Obama’s Legacy: Rule of Law is suspended

“Obama said his rule without law gave him the right to murder at will. Trump agrees. It is critical to wake up everyday people before we lose the rest of our civil rights.”

Permalink: https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2017/01/05/there-is-no-rule-of-law-in-america/

cartoon-liberty-721768
Civil liberties are in decline in America. Currently habeas corpus is suspended.  We no longer have a right to know charges brought against us.  Our last president (Obama), decided he had an imperial right to murder anyone, anywhere, any time, for any reason or without providing any reason at all. And Barack Obama murdered innocent Americans who broke no laws. Obama did this without due process of law. No president is allowed to do this, but Obama effectively declared himself king. Now Don John Trump has assumed the throne. 
 obama_yes_we_can_murder
Currently, we are involved in unprovoked American aggression against 27 nations who have not attacked us.

We have extralegal operations going on in 134 nations and now have more than 800 military bases involved in expanding wars of aggression. These wars violate U. S. law, international law, the U. S. constitution, the War Powers Act and abrogate treaties which are federal law.

Here at home, police agencies murder unarmed people in the street and our judicial system murders prisoners who pose no threat. Some of these prisoners we murder have been found to be innocent.

81-kpqrfqzl-_sl1500_We allow police officers to kill innocent and unarmed citizens without accountability. The supreme court has declared U. S. Police officers are above the law. Right now North Dakota Police officers and militarized police from surrounding states are carrying on a war against unarmed Native Americans water-protectors. These criminals with badges are injuring men, women, children and elders in violation of U. S. laws and treaties. Obama and Trump both refused to stop these atrocities. The rule of law is over in America.


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Obama declared this new rule without law gave him a right to murder at will.  Trump has now assumed this new presidential “right of kings.”  We are in a heap of trouble. We must wake up everyday people because civil rights and human rights are disappearing. 
occupy_poster_004
“The rule of law’s erosion was implemented by the Bush administration and realized by the Obama administration. Congress failed to stop it. Now, under the Trump administration, the Washington, D.C., establishment has done nothing to stop this crisis. Voters across America have excused transgressions on both sides of the corporate aisles. 8c87a-ciaduhThis cannot go on indefinitely without causing serious harm to our country.”

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Join the Revolution!

Fidel Castro: An International Hero

“A revolution is a struggle to the death between the future and the past,” Fidel once memorably said. Though the man has died, the ideas for which he struggled and to which he dedicated his life will undoubtedly live on, not just in Cuba but anywhere imperialism and the exploitation of the weak by the strong is a fact of life.”

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Castro was a flawed man, but he saved lives in Cuba, Africa and across the planet. He rescued Cuba from the Batista dictatorship and provided free health care and the highest literacy rates on the planet.

 
These accomplishments were huge, in spite of billions of U. S. dollars spent to isolate and harm
the Cuban people and their revolution.


Some facts you may not know…

Less than 20% of U. S. congress members are women.
Nearly half of the Cuban Parliament seats are held by women.
Cuba has a higher GDP growth rate than America.
 
Cuba has a lower unemployment rate than America.

castro_fidelito_2
According to a study conducted in late April by the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institute of Literacy, 32 million adults in the U.S. can’t read. That’s 14 percent of the population. 21 percent of adults in the U.S. read below a 5th grade level, and 19 percent of high school graduates can’t read.

The American literacy rate is around 86%

Cuba has the highest literacy rate on the planet: 99.8%

(along with Latvia and Estonia)


Fidel Castro was a great friend to Africa, to countries in the Global South and to the Non-Aligned Movement. His place in history is assured.
 

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“Fidel, as he is known to all in Cuba and worldwide, is recognized as the principal leader of the Cuban Revolution, for his relentless struggle in overthrowing the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista on January 1, 1959.

 


Most importantly, Fidel inspired Cuban workers, students and peasants to carry on the fight against U.S. imperialism and go forward to build socialism.

Despite all their propaganda, U.S. imperialists know that it is not Fidel Castro alone who made and sustained the Cuban revolution. The Cuban people as a whole worked and struggled to defend their socialist revolution and their liberation.


Then Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro attends manoeuvres during the 19th anniversary of his and his fellow revolutionaries arrival on the yacht Granma, in Havana in this November 1976 file photo. REUTERS/Prensa Latina/File Photo
Then Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro attends manoeuvres during the 19th anniversary of his and his fellow revolutionaries arrival on the yacht Granma, in Havana in this November 1976 file photo. REUTERS/Prensa Latina/File Photo


Fidel’s unique capacity as an audacious military and political leader earned him the rightful title of “Comandante en Jefe,” and the deep admiration of the Cuban people.

Despite a relentless CIA campaign of demonization and assassination plots, Fidel not only survived, but emerged defiant as an immensely popular and revered leader in the worldwide anti-imperialist movement.



…Cuba’s alliance with Venezuela’s revolutionary process following Hugo fidel-castro-gives-rare-possible-farewell-speech-at-cubas-communist-party-congressChávez’s election as president, has breathed new life into the hopes and aspirations for all Latin America and the oppressed peoples of the world.

 
“This is why the U.S. empire demonizes Fidel Castro.
But it is also why his stature grows and the Cuban revolution continues to inspire others to fight for liberation.”

“By defying Yankee imperialism for 50 years, instituting the best healthcare, child immunization and literacy systems in the Western Hemisphere (surpassing the US and Canada), exporting doctors to countries in need all over the globe (the Bush administration turned down his offer to send medical teams to New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina), and being an unrepentant advocate of the poor and exploited it is no surprise that millions will mourn his passing.”


1992
Fidel Castro passed away at age 90.
Standing well over 6 feet (1.8m) tall, the bearded Castro was for years a cigar-chomping bulwark of ideological resistance to the United States.

HAVANA: Flag-waving Cuban students broke into a mass chant of “I am Fidel” to salute Fidel Castro as nine days of mourning began for the combative Cold War icon, who dominated the Communist island’s political life for generations.tribute ceremony. (Reuters Photo)A photograph of Cuba’s former President Fidel Castro is seen during a tribute ceremony. (Reuters Photo)

 _92672813_cheandcastro2

We are in a heap of trouble…

Today’s explosive increase in human CO2 emissions and warming of the oceans are recreating the conditions of the great Permian extinction 300 million years ago

resistWe are in a heap of trouble and things will get much worse before they get better.

Forest loss is the tip of the iceberg… 663 million people – 1 in 10 – lack access to safe water and we have declining air quality, collapsing fish stocks and are suffering extinctions and species loss while oceans are dying and seas rise.


dyingoceans1Our oceans are dying,

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/sep/20/fish-are-dying-but-human-life-is-threatened-too

Today’s explosive increase in human CO2 emissions and warming of the oceans are recreating the conditions of the great Permian extinction 300 million years ago

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/05/16/environment/


So, instead of addressing these issues we spend trillions killing millions for billionaires… in American wars on nations whose people have not attacked us.occupy
The United States of America is officially bankrupt and our pretend money will not support official fictions. We know dozens of unprovoked and expanding wars of aggression will result in the economic bottom falling out between 2025 and 2030. This will lead to a global economic depression unlike any in recorded human history.
In response to these collective threats, a bold and daring 18% of the American people elect a narcissist, neo-fascist, clueless, racist, ranting, orange misogynist.
 
trump7steadmanfromnewstatesmandotcom
The whole planet knows this hot-tempered, socio-pathic, orange, man-child and chump has no skills for leadership.

He’s like a teenager on steroids with his finger on the red button.

 
Sigh… A heap of trouble indeed.

www.bu.edu


“Because you can’t argue with all the fools in the world. It’s easier to let them have their way, then trick them when they’re not paying attention.”

― Christopher Paolini

https://revolutionresource.org/2016/11/15/common-sense/


cropped-rainy-day-reading.jpgSo what do you think? Let us know…

False Choices? : Tell us what you think…

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2014/08/27/false-choices/


Stand Up, Speak Out, Take Action! Contact Elected Officials!

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/stand-up-speak-out-take-action-contact-elected-officials/


MayDay2


ttd

The Wordsmith Collection: Writing & Creative Arts

You can contact us through Square via square@writingresource.org to provide donations to us through Missoula Federal Credit Union.
(editor@writingresource.org or timflanagan@writingresource.org)

Please support Alternative Media and Education

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http://www.ThePeaceresource.wordpress.com
http://www.ThePortlandAlliance.org

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Together we make a difference.

Thanks for all you do.

Join the Revolution!

 

 


Peace and Progress or Unending Wars

On most areas of economic policy, most progressives agree more than they disagree. But too many people with good hearts refuse to face facts about the last 8 years. This studious ignorance is not helpful. We cannot continue fighting 27 simultaneous, unprovoked and unwinnable wars. This has bankrupted the nation.

peace5The newest propaganda from the corporate elite is working too well. People who would not accept the illegal Vietnam war are now willing to condone or endorse more than 27 illegal and unprovoked wars of choice against smaller and less powerful nations who have not attacked us.

What have we become?  Too many of the people who stood up for peace have now chosen to remain silent. These unprovoked American wars for extraction, exploitation and extortion which expanded under Obama have continued to expand under “The Don” huckster and con-man D. J. Trump.

Where have the peacemakers gone?

If there was ever a time to speak up, this is the time. We have become the aggressor in 27 avoidable wars. This costs trillions of dollars and millions of lives. resistThese unnecessary wars of aggression create new enemies while making us demonstrably less secure.

We have not, will not and cannot “win” wars of aggression against dozens of smaller and less powerful nations who have not attacked us. Surrendering to unnecessary wars is a losing proposition.

 

In most areas of economic policy, most progressives agree more than they disagree.
But too many people with good hearts refuse to face facts about the last 9 plus years.
This studious ignorance is frustrating and fatal.

We cannot continue fighting 27 simultaneous, unprovoked and unwinnable wars. This insanity has already bankrupted the nation.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/05/22/the-dream-is-over/

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…We are still fighting unprovoked wars (Bombings, Drones, Other [CIA]) in Afghanistan, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gaza, Gulf of Guinea, Iran, Iraq, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Tunesia, Uganda, Ukraine, West Bank, & Yemen.

 

obamabush


No sane person can call this surrender to expanding wars “good leadership.”

During his time in office Obama bombed more than TEN sovereign states:  Afghanistan, Algeria, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, the Phillipines, Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen and Kandahar.

None of these nations attacked us.

This aggression against smaller and less powerful nations represents more violence than any of Obama’s predecessors since World War II. Most bombings violate International Treaties, U. S. Civil Law, the war powers act and constitutional mandates.

obama_yes_we_can_murder

 

Most Americans do not hate the former president, but we despise how congress and the president have spent trillions killing millions for billionaires instead of attending to the peoples’ business.

Barack Obama refused to govern. Instead, he allowed the CIA, the Pentagon, war-hawks and profiteers to bankrupt the nation with endless, expanding and increasing wars of aggression for the corporate bottom line.

 


We have become the primary source of terror, munitions and war on the planet. This matters.  No thinking person can condone what the Obama administration has done to the nation and the planet.

The U. S. A. is now Murder, Inc. And the Don of this organized crime syndicate,
D.J. Trump, is now on board for dozens of expanding wars and bankruptcy.

 no6

Publishing facts about the last 9 years can stir people up. We have watched dysfunctional leadership bankrupt the nation while avoidable deaths rise at home and abroad.

The Obama administration failed to secure the peace or create jobs at home.

This is the Obama legacy.

 ISIS, BUSH, OBAMA & Better Options…

 “It’s frustrating to see politicians ignore the origins of our conflicts abroad and use current foes as excuses for creating new ones,”

https://thewordsmithcollection.wordpress.com/2015/05/17/isis-bush-and-better-options/

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I  would enjoy having a beer with Obama at the local pub. But his refusal to govern is dangerous and disappointing. He allowed the CIA and Pentagon to take us from 4 wars to 27 wars.

Sigh. I voted for him once. But he stabbed us in the back and expects us to thank him for pulling the knife out halfway.  No more “lesser-evil” for me.  


Obama surrendered to the corporate elite. Liberal apologies for Obama’s bloody eight years cannot change facts on the ground. We have created millions new enemies, incurred trillions in new debt and are demonstrably less secure. This is a big part of how Trump the racist chump got elected.

 https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/06/10/the-liberal-apologies-for-obamas-ugly-reign/

war

American military misadventures have bankrupted the nation. If these more than two dozen simultaneous and expanding wars continue… we will be in full retreat from more than 900 military bases while dead oceans become seas rising to flood all shores.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/05/22/the-dream-is-over/

 


Facts matter. And we are in a heap of trouble.  We need to vote our values instead of our fears in 2018 and 2020. A Green New Deal is exactly what we need. Shut down corporate wars to rebuild the nation.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/09/23/we-must-vote-our-values-in-november/


Our New President could have been:
Dr. Jill Stein

DSC_0635-copy.14236.widea.0“My Power to the People Plan creates deep system change, moving from the greed and exploitation of corporate capitalism to a human-centered economy that puts people, planet and peace over profit.

It offers direct answers to the economic, social, and ecological crises brought on by both corporate political parties. And it empowers the American people to fix our broken political system and make real the promise of democracy.

This plan will end unemployment and poverty; avert climate catastrophe; build a sustainable, just economy; and recognize the dignity and human rights of everyone in our society and our world. The power to create this new world is not in our hopes, it’s not in our dreams – it’s in our hands.”


peace-conversion-task-force-cartoon-sized-down-adapted-300x235



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The Wordsmith Collection:
Writing & Creative Arts

 


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Please support Alternative Media and Education

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and other real news resources…

Together we make a difference. Thanks for all you do.
Join the Revolution!

We must vote our values

Corporate wars and profiteering have already bankrupted the nation. If we continue down this road, there will be a global recession while we are in full retreat.

81-kpqrfqzl-_sl1500_Mainstream media represents the corporate elite and are more concerned with entertainment than with hard news.

obamabush
George W. Bush was never elected president of the United States.

But he was installed as president of American Wars, Inc.
cryingObama has carried George W. Bush’s torch, taking us from 4 wars to 27 wars.
queen hillaryTrump and Clinton offered to continue spending trillions killing kingtrumpmillions for billionaires. Trump has done just that and this has not been working out well
for most of us.
Corporate wars and profiteering have already bankrupted the nation. If we continue down this road, a global recession will occur and we will be in full retreat from 800 military bases while dying oceans flood all shores. 

https://thewordsmithcollection.wordpress.com/2016/08/24/america-is-bankrupt/

stein123

We had a solution!  We could have voted for Jill Stein and the Green New Deal.

“Establish a foreign policy based on diplomacy, international law, and human rights. End the wars and drone attacks, cut military spending by at least 50% and close the 800+ foreign military bases that are turning our republic into a bankrupt empire. Stop U.S. support and arms sales to human rights abusers, and lead on global nuclear disarmament.”

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/01/20/our-new-president-dr-jill-stein/

But instead we are in dangerous waters with a racist chump at the helm. 



ttd

The Wordsmith Collection: Writing & Creative Arts

You can contact us through Square via square@writingresource.org to provide donations to us through Missoula Federal Credit Union.
(editor@writingresource.org or timflanagan@writingresource.org)

Please support Alternative Media and Education

http://www.RevolutionResource.org
http://www.ThePeaceresource.wordpress.com
http://www.ThePortlandAlliance.org

and other real news resources…peace5

Together we make a difference.

Thanks for all you do.

Join the Revolution!

 

Religion

Some people are so afraid they can’t find courage to debunk the junk and face facts.

 

ideas2
picture by: http://mark—lawrence.blogspot.com/2016/04/on-fear-of-imagination.html

Deism and atheism are faith-based myths.  Existentialism consist of our five senses. We are finite creatures in an infinite universe and much remains beyond our ken. 

But we can embrace the mystery.  ~OO~



https://thewordsmithcollection.wordpress.com/2015/01/11/life-creativity-faith-mystery-imagination-wisdom-love-joy-dreams-and-visions/

“Religious” people say all kinds of things. And people say all kinds of things about religion. Here are some examples…


“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
~Dalai Lamadalai


“When the missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said ‘Let us pray.’ We closed our eyes. When we opened them we had the Bible and they had the land.”

~Desmond Tutu



“I believe in a religion that believes in freedom. Any time I have to accept a religion that won’t let me fight a battle for my people, I say to hell with that religion.”

~ Malcolm X

Alice_Walkerbookfansnet

“I don’t call myself a Buddhist. I’m a free spirit. I believe I’m here on earth to admire and enjoy it; that’s my religion.”

~Alice Walker

“Religion is for people who are scared to go to hell. Spirituality is for people who have already been there.”
~Bonnie Raitt

 “I am a deeply religious nonbeliever – this is a somewhat new kind of religion.” “

 



“I cannot imagine a God who rewards and punishes the objects of his creation, whose purposes are modeled after our own — a God, in short, who is but a reflection of human frailty. Neither can I believe that the individual survives the death of his body, although feeble souls harbor such thoughts through fear or ridiculous egotisms.”

― Albert Einstein
“Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.”
― Voltaire, Questions sur les Miracles à M. Claparede, Professeur de Théologie à Genève, par un Proposant: Ou Extrait de Diverses Lettres de M. de Voltaire
carlin
“Religion has actually convinced people that there’s an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever ’til the end of time!
 
But He loves you. He loves you, and He needs money! He always needs money! He’s all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing, and all-wise, somehow just can’t handle money!”
― George Carlin
“All religion, my friend, is simply evolved out of fraud, fear, greed, imagination, and poetry.”
― Edgar Allan Poe
camus
“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”
― Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion
“I do not believe in God and I am not an atheist.”

― Albert Camus, Notebooks 1951-1959


 
“The problem with writing about religion is that you run the risk of offending sincerely religious people, and then they come after you with machetes.”
~Dave Barry
“The reason people use a crucifix against vampires is because vampires are allergic to pryorbullshit.”
― Richard Pryor
“My best advice to anyone who wants to raise a happy, mentally healthy child is: Keep him or her as far away from a church as you can.”
 
“There’s a big difference between kneeling down and bending over.”
― Frank Zappa
“We read the Golden Rule and judge it to be a brilliant distillation of many of our ethical impulses. And then we come across another of God’s teachings on morality: if a man discovers on his wedding night that his bride is not a virgin, he must stone her to death on her father’s doorstep (Deuteronomy 22:13-21).”
― Sam Harris

emerson

“The religion of one age is the literary entertainment of the next.”

― Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Truth, in matters of religion, is simply the opinion that has survived.”
“The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible.”
― Oscar Wilde (1854 – 1900)

“Religion is the opium of the poor”

― Ernest Hemingway


 

“The church is always trying to get other people to reform; it might not be a bad idea to reform itself a little, by way of example”

sam

“A man is accepted into a church for what he believes and he is turned out for what he knows.”

 

“It ain’t those parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me, it’s the parts that I do understand.”
― Mark Twain
“Why should there be a discipline such as epistemology?” ~ Aristotle


https://thewordsmithcollection.wordpress.com/2015/04/15/logic-101/

 “Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.”  Aldous Huxley
― Aldous Huxley


https://thewordsmithcollection.wordpress.com/2015/03/27/fear-blind-faith-and-ignorance-vs-education-science-and-courage/



After getting past religion, some people like to talk about faith. 

GgmmDmB0

Faith has always mattered…


“Faith is what someone knows to be true, whether they believe it or not.”

Flannery O’Connor

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/02/20/faith-hope-and-love/


 

 



Blessings we bestow upon one another, comforting words or a nod, wink, hug or simple touch; are more important than prayer and more essential than worship. The rest is commentary, art, science or fiction…

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/02/03/spiritual-and-religious-ideas/


“One of the most important criteria for any complete education is the importance of g7643_u4722_mlk04skepticism.  Systems of spiritual beliefs and articles of faith can be based in logic and rational considerations, yet include existential ideas.

Why limit ourselves?

“I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality. ”
―Martin Luther King, Jr.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/01/16/love/

“Love takes off masks that we fear
we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.”
―James A. Baldwin

james_baldwin_550px

Love Notes: about faith, lies, truth, science and ficton…

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/08/05/love-notes-commentary-about-faith-lies-truth-science-and-ficton/

“We find our places, stay where we’re needed and do the best we can. The rest is commentary.”
~
Doc Adams on Gunsmoke

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2014/04/29/faith-life-blessings-and-joy/


Some people are so afraid they cannot 
ebd267800757e69e80f8126431615227--kindness-matters-acts-of-kindnessfind the courage to debunk the junk and face facts. And increasing numbers don’t want to know truths which may be too terrible to bear.

On kindness…

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/04/23/kindness/

Here are selected opinions about great mysteries which elude scientific confirmation and hover over humanity.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/04/28/what-about-the-afterlife/

We rely on paolocurtazdotitfive senses to interpret the universe.  With a vast array of modern interconnected technology, we see great distances and hear sounds earlier generations could never have imagined.

We are always and forever smelling, tasting and touching evidence which surrounds. But our individual and collective impressions remain subjective, variable and eccentric.

These are no more than illusions which may or may not resemble objective reality…

Timothy Martin Flanagan 


https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/04/23/mystery-imagination-and-small-wisdom/

An invisible man in the sky, perfect… yet with violent human emotions, angers and fears… seems like a natural contradiction.  Much of the bible, written by human beings, is vicious, cruel and filled with prejudice, hatred and vitriol.

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/03/29/abrahamic-resolutions/

5914-Camus-2

“I shall tell you a great secret my friend.  Do not wait for the last judgment,
it takes place every day.”
Albert Camus

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/03/01/the-last-judgement/


“From my rotting body, flowers shall grow and I am in them, and that is eternity.”

492ef5d189f28ae678fd96be17854718--edvard-munch-beaux-arts

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”


“There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.”

― Søren Kierkegaard

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2016/01/23/fool-me-once/


“Love is like a faucet, it turns off and on.”billie-holiday

Billie Holiday

 


“Love takes off masks that we fear
we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.”
―James A. Baldwin

https://thepeaceresource.wordpress.com/2015/01/16/love/




ttd


Please support our efforts! 2016-09-16-1474044012-2676960-defend_the_sacred

You can contact us through
square@writingresource.org to provide donations to us through
Missoula Federal Credit Union

Support Alternative Media and Education

http://www.RevolutionResource.org
http://www.ThePeaceresource.wordpress.com
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peace5


and other real news resources…

Together we make a difference.

Thanks for all you do.

Join the Revolution!


Please Donate for Literacy and to help us keep this resource online 


Supreme court rules American police bureaus are above the law.

“Some people are so afraid they cannot find the courage to debunk the junk and face facts. And increasing numbers don’t want to know truths too terrible to bear.”

bo-pino-cartoonSotomayor dissents at SCOTUS: “This case allows the police to stop you on the street, demand your identification, and check it for outstanding traffic warrants—even if you are doing nothing wrong. If the officer discovers a warrant for a fine you forgot to pay, courts will now excuse his illegal stop and will admit into evidence anything he happens to find by searching you after arresting you on the warrant. Because the Fourth Amendment should prohibit, not permit, such misconduct, I dissent.”
http://www.vox.com/…/sonia-sotomayor-dissent-supreme-court

 “Please try to remember that what they believe, as well as what they do and cause you to endure does not testify to your inferiority but to their inhumanity”
James Baldwin, The Fire Next Time

VOX.COM|BY VICTORIA M. MASSIE


ignorancejbIn an impassioned dissent Monday, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor broke with the majority of the court in a case about unreasonable searches and seizures, citing James Baldwin’s and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s written experiences of constantly being viewed as criminally suspect as black people in America.

The case, Utah v. Strieff, examined whether it was constitutional for evidence collected unlawfully by a police officer to be used as evidence in court. In 2006, Utah Narcotics Detective Douglas Fackrell stopped Edward Strieff Jr. in Salt Lake City based on an anonymous tip about potential drug activity, discovered an outstanding warrant, arrested him, and found drug paraphernalia.

 In a 5-3 decision, the Court reversed the Utah Supreme Court decision that the illegal stop disqualified the evidence. Instead, the Supreme Court ruled that the evidence did not violate the Fourth Amendment because the evidence seized weakened the unlawful stop.

1498146393-177479-James_a__baldwin_quotes_and_saJustice Ruth Bader Ginsburg joined sections I through III of Sotomayor’s dissent. Justice Elena Kagan also issued a separate dissent, joined by Ginsburg.

For Justice Clarence Thomas, who gave the opinion, Utah v. Strieff was a case in which “the costs of exclusion outweighs its deterrent benefits.” But in section IV, Sotomayor wrote for herself about how the ruling was a clear erosion of individuals’ rights:


By legitimizing the conduct that produces this double consciousness, this case tells everyone, white and black, guilty and innocent, that an officer can verify your legal status at any time. It says that your body is subject to invasion while courts excuse the violation of your rights. It implies that you are not a citizen of a democracy but the subject of a carceral state, just waiting to be cataloged.

2cd09c402b83186e957feaeb7f75592bThe central point in Sotomayor’s dissent is that the case centers around “suspicionless stops” that are all too familiar for people of color, even though the defendant in this case is white. She cites James Baldwin’s The Fire Next Time, W.E.B. Du Bois’s The Souls of Black Folk, and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me as evidence of those who have testified to what it is like living with the indignity of always being susceptible to unconstitutional searches, especially when one has done nothing more than be born in a body that is always already deemed criminal.

As Vox’s Dara Lind has noted, over the past 50 years, there has been a growing push from the Court undermining the rights of defendants and suspects in criminal cases despite the fact that their rights make up a significant portion of the Bill of Rights. Utahfurther solidifies the pro-prosecutor standing that Sotomayor does not share.

downloadBut Sotomayor’s dissent highlights how the ruling fails to listen to those who have long discussed the ways illegal stops undermine American democracy.

“We must not pretend that the countless people who are routinely targeted by police are ‘isolated,'” she wrote. “They are the canaries in the coal mine whose deaths, civil and literal, warn us that no one can breathe in this atmosphere.”

Read the full ruling, including Sotomayor’s dissent here.


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     Willie Dixon

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