Daily Archives: December 9, 2019

2019-12-09: News Headlines

Naureen Shah (2019-12-09). Under Attack by Trump, Immigrant Justice is Advancing in the States. aclu.org This year was another of devastating attacks on immigrants' rights | by the Trump administration. However, in both red and blue states, we fought | and won new measures that stymie Trump's deportation machine. These local wins, | though often overshadowed by the president's xenophobia, are powerful. Here are | some of the most surprising and significant of our 2019 immigrant justice victories | in the states. | In | Michigan, a former marine's arrest prompts police reform | Grand Rapids, Michigan police kept veteran and U.S. citizen Jilmar | Ramos-Gomez in immigration detention for 3 days — even though <...

Staff (2019-12-09). Supreme Court Allows Kentucky's Fetal Ultrasound Law to Stand. truthdig.com WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court on Monday left in place a Kentucky law requiring doctors to perform ultrasounds and show fetal images to patients before abortions. | The justices did not comment in refusing to review an appeals court ruling that upheld the law. Enforcement of the law had been on hold pending the legal challenge but will begin shortly, said Steve Pitt, general counsel to Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin. | The American Civil Liberties Union had challenged the law on behalf of Kentucky's lone remaining abortion clinic. The ACLU argued that "display and describe" ultrasound laws violate physicians' speec…

Matthew Segal (2019-12-09). Immigrants have been denied due process for years. In New England, that's about to change. aclu.org One of the bedrock principles of our judicial | system is that the government can't just lock people up without showing why | it's necessary. | For noncitizens caught up in Trump's deportation | machine, though, that principle doesn't always apply. But now because of our | litigation in New England that's about to change. | Gilberto Pereira Brito was detained in March by ICE | — snatched from his wife and three children, all of whom are U.S. citizens — and | brought before an immigration judge for a bond hearing. To keep him in | detention, the government had to prove nothing, whereas Gilberto had…

Heather Stroud (2019-12-09). Question for Kirbymoorside UK Hustings Meeting: Would you stand up for Julian Assange? dissidentvoice.org To those candidates who are putting themselves forward as MPs to become a voice within the UK Parliament — would you stand up for Julian Assange and for those who. in speaking truth, have the audacity to challenge the dialogue of power? I am disappointed that my question relating to the arbitrary detention of Julian …

WSWS (2019-12-09). Exiled NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden condemns persecution of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning. wsws.org Edward Snowden gave an interview via live video link to The Right Livelihood Awards in Stockholm, in which he categorically defended WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange and imprisoned whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

John Washington (2019-12-09). The Government Has Taken At Least 1,100 Children From Their Parents Since Family Separations Officially Ended. theintercept.com Border Patrol agents, untrained in child welfare, decide that some parents are unfit to stay with their children based on brief interactions in detention.

IMEMC News & Agencies (2019-12-09). Hunger-striker in Serious Condition. imemc.org Ahmad Zahran, a Palestinian administrative detainee held in Israeli jails who has been on hunger strike for 78 consecutive days, in protest against his incarceration without charge or trial, is in serious health condition and has been admitted to an Israeli hospital, today, said the Palestinian Prisoner Society (PPS). Zahran, …

Fight Back (2019-12-09). Arizona educators, progressives confront ALEC summit and Betsy DeVos. fightbacknews.org Tucson, AZ – On December 4, a coalition of union educators, immigrant rights, police crimes, and climate change activists confronted the agenda of corporations like UPS and energy industry giants and billionaires like Charles Koch and Sheldon Achelson. At its height the crowd numbered around 200 with signs reading: "ALEC: Oligarchy in progress" and "Privatization, criminalization, incarceration, climate change, imperialism: #ALECisBehindIt." | The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a notorious organization of hardcore conservatives, was holding its States and Nation Policy Summit in Arizona. ALEC hoste…

SubRosa Community Space (2019-12-09). Black and Pink prisoner letter writing holiday card party. indybay.org SubRosa Community Space | 703 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz…

David Rovics (2019-12-09). An Australian Tourist, a Bulgarian Prison, and a Recording Session. dissidentvoice.org Bulgaria, it appears, is a captured state. I'll get to that in a minute. I first heard about Jock Palfreeman, an Australian serving a lengthy prison sentence in Bulgaria, through a fellow Australian. The context was a message from my friend Kamala that was straightforward, to the effect of, "would you write a song about …

Thomas Knapp (2019-12-09). Meet Virgil Griffith: America's Newest Political Prisoner. counterpunch.org On November 29, FBI agents arrested hacker and cryptocurrency developer Virgil Griffith. His alleged crime: Talking. Yes, really. The FBI alleges that Griffith "participated in discussions regarding using cryptocurrency technologies to evade sanctions and launder money." Griffith, a US citizen who lives in Singapore, gave a talk at conference on blockchain technology in April. Because More

Julia Conley, staff writer (2019-12-09). Supreme Court Won't Hear Appeal of Kentucky's Forced Ultrasound Law, Allowing Law Intended to 'Shame' Patients Stand. commondreams.org Kentucky will uphold a law reproductive rights groups say is intended only to "shame and intimidate" patients who seek abortion care, following the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on Monday not to hear an appeal to H.B. 2, or what the ACLU calls a "forced narrated ultrasound law." | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_special_coverage/public/headline/thumbs/5880678247_59510d0bff_o1_1_0_0.jpg

RT (2019-12-09). Iran ready for big prisoner exchange with Washington but 'ball is in US' court' — Zarif. rt.com Tehran is open to exchanging more prisoners with the US, but it is now time for Washington to make a move on it, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said, after a recent swap left more room for optimism. | "After getting our hostage back this week, fully ready for comprehensive prisoner exchange," Zarif tweeted on Monday. | The ball is in the US' court. | His words came after a two-person Swiss-brokered prisoner swap with Washington concluded over the weekend. Tehran released a…

Ian S. Thompson (2019-12-09). Three Ways the "Fairness for All Act" Doesn't Protect LGBTQ People from Discrimination. aclu.org On Friday, Congressman Chris Stewart (R-Utah) and | several of his Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives introduced | the so-called "Fairness for All Act." The bill is being described by its | supporters as a compromise that protects both LGBTQ people and religious | liberty. | In reality, the bill facilitates the Trump | administration's ongoing efforts to give a greenlight to those who would turn | LGBTQ people away from jobs, health care, housing, even taxpayer-funded | programs, simply because of who they are. The bill also weakens some | longstanding protections in federal and state laws…

patrick (2019-12-08). Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Reinstates Angela Davis' Award. bdsmovement.net Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Reinstates Angela Davis' Award: In the NewsThe organization faced backlash and internal dissension after previously rescinding the honor—a decision Davis and allies attributed to the racial justice activist's support for Palestinians' rights and BDS. | Right To BoycottJanuary 25, 2019 | By: | | COLORLINES

Ben Norton (2019-12-07). US government drops case against Max Blumenthal after jailing journalist on false charges. thegrayzone.com As the mysterious disappearance of Secret Service records and complete absence of evidence supporting its case came to light, the…

RT (2019-12-07). Satanic Temple members say 'HELL NO' to discrimination after American Airlines forces woman to change 'HAIL SATAN' shirt. rt.com Backers of the Satanic Temple are raising hell after American Airlines forced a Florida woman to change out of a shirt proclaiming "Hail Satan," threatening to remove her from the flight over its "offensive" message. | Key West resident Swati Runi Goyal was awaiting takeoff aboard a flight headed for Las Vegas on the day before Halloween — known in some regions as "Devil's Night" — when an American Airlines crew member approached her demanding an immediate wardrobe change. | "The gentleman asked me if I understood what 'offensive' meant," Goyal told the New York Post. "I said, 'I'm a foreign-born min…

RT (2019-12-07). 'We can make a deal together': Trump thanks Iran for 'very fair negotiation' that led to prisoner swap. rt.com In a reprieve from the usual bellicose rhetoric, President Donald Trump thanked the leaders of Iran for swapping an American prisoner with a detained Iranian scientist. Senior officials, however, told a different story. | Princeton scholar Xiyue Wang left Iran for the US on Saturday morning, while Iranian Scientist Massoud Soleimani returned to Tehran from America. Wang had been in Iranian custody since 2016 and was serving a ten-year term on espionage charges, while Soleimani was arrested in Chicago last year for sanctions violations and was awaiting trial. | The prisoner exchange came after weeks of negotiat…

RT (2019-12-06). Defense firm faked documents to bilk US government of $1.2 billion — lawsuit. rt.com A defense contractor overcharged the Pentagon by more than $1.2 billion for thousands of armored vehicles, a whistleblower's complaint alleges. The company also threatened employees who refused to go along with the grift. | With Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks responsible for more than six in ten deaths of US personnel in Iraq and four in ten deaths in Afghanistan in 2007, the Pentagon solicited designs for a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle to replace its thin-s…

Shaw Drake (2019-12-05). A Border Officer Told Me I Couldn't Opt Out of the Face Recognition Scan. They Were Wrong. aclu.org "Look at the camera," a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) | officer told me as I approached the primary inspection point at the Paso del | Norte port of entry. | "Is that the face recognition technology?" I asked. "If so, I want to opt-out." | "Look at the camera." | "I want to opt-out." | "Look at the camera." | On the evening of November 25, 2019, I crossed from Mexico into the United States. Signs in the port noted the new use of face recognition technology and United States citizens' option to "undergo alternative procedures." After handing over my U.S. passport card, and despite my repeated protests…

Janine Jackson (2019-12-05). 'It's This Culture of Secrecy That's Pervading the Courts' – CounterSpin interview with Melissa Goodman on the PATRIOT Act. fair.org Janine Jackson interviewed the ACLU's Melissa Goodman about the PATRIOT Act for the September 30, 2005, episode of CounterSpin—a conversation that was reaired on the November 29, 2019, show. This is a lightly edited transcript of the rebroadcast. | Media…

Alice Speri (2019-12-05). New Legislation Aims to End the "School to Confinement Pathway" theintercept.com Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts introduced new legislation Thursday aimed at ending the "school to confinement pathway." The bill targets discriminatory and punitive school discipline policies that push black and brown students out of schools at disproportionately high rates, often directly into the criminal justice system. | The bill offers incentives to states and schools that commit to ban most suspensions and expulsions, as well as corporal punishment and the physical restraint of students. It also allots resources to the Education Department's Office of Civil Rights at a time when the Trump administrat…

Staff (2019-12-05). Aminatou Haidar Honored For Decades of Peaceful Resistance in Western Sahara, Africa's Last Colony. democracynow.org In Stockholm, Democracy Now! sat down with one of the winners of this year's Right Livelihood Award: Sahrawi human rights leader Aminatou Haidar. For over three decades, Haidar has led a peaceful campaign to resist the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara, which is often called Africa's last colony. Morocco has occupied Western Sahara — a small region just south of Morocco in northwest Africa — since 1975. Thousands have been tortured, imprisoned, killed and disappeared while resisting the occupation. Peaceful protesters, led by women, are routinely beaten in the streets. Despite this violent repress…

Staff (2019-12-05). Edward Snowden: If I Came Back to the U.S., I Would Likely Die in Prison for Telling the Truth. democracynow.org The Right Livelihood Awards celebrated their 40th anniversary Wednesday at the historic Cirkus Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, where more than a thousand people gathered to celebrate this year's four laureates: Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg; Chinese women's rights lawyer Guo Jianmei, Brazilian indigenous leader Davi Kopenawa and the organization he co-founded, the Yanomami Hutukara Association; and Sahrawi human rights leader Aminatou Haidar, who has challenged the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara for decades. The Right Livelihood Award is known as the "Alternative Nobel Prize." Over the past four deca…

Fight Back (2019-12-04). Immigrant rights activists protest ICE detention at Sherburne County commissioners' meeting. fightbacknews.org Elk River, MN – Immigrant rights activists mobilized to the Sherburne County commissioners' meeting at 9: 00 in the morning Tuesday, December 3 in Elk River, a town of around 20,000 people an hour northwest of Minneapolis. They held signs throughout the meeting, and several of them spoke passionately during the public comment section of the agenda, appealing to the commissioners to stop participating in and profiting from immigrant detention in the Sherburne County Jail. | The Sherburne County Jail has a contract for 300 beds to detain immigrants for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), making it the la…

splcenter (2019-12-04). SPLC lawsuit seeks to restore Mississippi citizens' right to vote. splcenter.org When they were children, Herman Parker and his three sisters went to their grandparents' house every election day.

Staff (2019-12-04). U.N. Report Finds Over 7 Million Children Worldwide Are Being Held in Various Kinds of Detention. democracynow.org A damning United Nations report says that 7 million children are deprived of their liberty worldwide, from children imprisoned on the U.S.-Mexico border to the missing children of ISIS fighters. The Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty says that at least 410,000 of those children are detained in jails and prisons, where violence is "endemic." The study also found that the number of children detained in the context of armed conflict has dramatically risen. The global study was published in November, on the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the landmark international treaty affi…

Staff (2019-12-04). Headlines for December 4, 2019. democracynow.org House Impeachment Report Accuses Trump of Soliciting Foreign Interference in 2020 Election, Report: Europe Could Face Annual Extreme Heat Waves Due to Climate Change, Kamala Harris Ends Her 2020 Presidential Campaign, ProPublica: McKinsey Helped Trump Speed Up Mass Deportation Program, Detained Asylum Seekers Protest in Winnfield, Louisiana, House Votes for Bill to Punish China over Mass Imprisonment of Muslims, ICC Begins Hearing over Alleged U.S. Military Torture in Afghanistan, Rikers Island Officers Stood By as Teenager Attempted to Hang Himself, Today Marks 50th Anniversary of Assassination of Fred Hampton…

Sonia Gill (2019-12-03). Congress Must Act to Protect the Right to Vote. aclu.org Update 12/06/19: The House passed the Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would update the Voting Rights Act for the first time since it was last reauthorized in 2006. | Read the ACLU's report to Congress on the importance of restoring the Voting Rights Act. | This week, the House is expected to vote on H.R. 4, the Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019. The bill would help ensure racial barriers to voting are removed from elections across the country. Passing the VRAA will advance needed protections for people whose right to vote is under attack based…

Staff (2019-12-03). Meet Yetnebersh Nigussie: A Blind Ethiopian Lawyer Fighting for Global Disability Rights. democracynow.org December 3 is International Day of Persons With Disabilities. "Unfortunately, disability-based discrimination is still a global phenomenon," says Yetnebersh Nigussie, a lawyer and disability rights activist from Ethiopia who in 2017 received the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the "Alternative Nobel Prize." Nigussie is the director for advocacy and rights at Light for the World and the former chair of the Ethiopian National Association of the Blind women's wing. She has been blind since the age of five. Yetnebersh Nigussie speaks with us in Stockholm. She is one of many former Right Livelihood Award recipie…

splcenter (2019-12-02). Prison By Any Other Name: A Report on South Florida Detention Facilities. splcenter.org

LaLa B Holston-Zannell (2019-12-01). Reducing HIV Transmission Requires Decriminalizing Sex Work. aclu.org Transgender people are criminalized for our bodies. | We are profiled, stereotyped, and presumed | guilty based on the way we look or for failing to meet gender expectations, and | it must stop. | Nearly one | in six transgender people has been incarcerated. For trans people of color, | the number is one in two. It's staggering, and it demonstrates the deep bias in | our current laws and criminal justice system. | This World AIDS Day, let's not forget that transgender | women —…

Ashoka Mukpo (2019-11-27). "If I Could Just Look at Her" aclu.org Watch the journey of two separated parents trying to cross the border and reunite with their children.: | " data-whitelisted="false" data-domain="www.youtube.com"> | In October, the Trump administration admitted that in a 12-month period, beginning in July 2017, it separated 4,370 immigrant children from their parents at the border. Since then, over 1,000 more have been separated under a dubious loophole that all…

David Cole (2019-11-26). We're Grateful for the Constitution. aclu.org Thanksgiving is here: that time of year when we pause to take stock of all we're grateful for. At the ACLU, we're saying thanks for all the crucial wins from our legal teams — and for the Constitution. | In just the last few months, we've racked up many essential victories in the ongoing battle to protect civil liberties and civil rights. The scope of these victories is breathtaking: they span criminal justice, privacy, religious freedom, reproductive rights, due process for immigrants, racial justice, LGBTQ rights, and the right to protest the Keystone pipeline, among others. We've won crucial victories…

Kathryn Casteel (2019-11-21). After parole, Alabama man gets life back on track, helps others. splcenter.org Chris "Champ" Napier started speaking to students and at-risk youth about his experience in prison before he knew he would ever regain his freedom.

Hatewatch Staff and Brett Barrouquere (2019-11-13). Neo-Nazi Group NSM Faces New Upheaval After James Hart Stern's Death. splcenter.org The leadership of the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement (NSM) has been thrown into chaos again following the death of self-described civil rights activist James Hart Stern.

Will Tucker (2019-11-07). After a hard-won sentence reduction, Huntsville man's court debt is another obstacle to freedom. splcenter.org Fresh out of prison after nearly 23 years, Archie "Jody" Hamlett appeared at his mother's door in Huntsville, Ala., one fall day in 2017.

splcenter (2019-11-05). SPLC celebrates 30th anniversary of Civil Rights Memorial. splcenter.org The first African American elected mayor of Montgomery, Alabama — a city known as both the "Cradle of the Confederacy" and the "Birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement" — urged those who gathered today to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Civil Rights Memorial to ask themselves how they can make an impact on the lives of others.

2019-12-09: Social Media Postees

Please be social by posting these 'POSTEES' on social media!

Under Attack by Trump, Immigrant Justice is Advancing in the States
Naureen Shah | aclu.org | 2019-12-09
This year was another of devastating attacks on immigrants' rights | by the Trump administration. However, in both red and blue states, we fought | and won new measures that stymie Trump's deportation machine. These local wins, | though often overshadowed by the president's xenophobia, are powerful. Here are | some of the most surprising and significant of our 2019 immigrant justice victories | in the states. | In | Michigan, a former marine's arrest prompts police reform | Grand Rapids, Michigan police kept veteran and U.S. citizen Jilmar | Ramos-Gomez in immigration detention for 3 days — even though
aclu.org/news/immigrants-rights/under-attack-by-trump-immigrant-justice-is-advancing-in-the-states

Immigrants have been denied due process for years. In New England, that's about to change
Matthew Segal | aclu.org | 2019-12-09
One of the bedrock principles of our judicial | system is that the government can't just lock people up without showing why | it's necessary. | For noncitizens caught up in Trump's deportation | machine, though, that principle doesn't always apply. But now because of our | litigation in New England that's about to change. | Gilberto Pereira Brito was detained in March by ICE | — snatched from his wife and three children, all of whom are U.S. citizens — and | brought before an immigration judge for a bond hearing. To keep him in | detention, the government had to prove nothing, whereas Gilberto had…
aclu.org/news/immigrants-rights/immigrants-have-been-denied-due-process-for-years-in-new-england-thats-about-to-change

Question for Kirbymoorside UK Hustings Meeting: Would you stand up for Julian Assange?
Heather Stroud | dissidentvoice.org | 2019-12-09
To those candidates who are putting themselves forward as MPs to become a voice within the UK Parliament — would you stand up for Julian Assange and for those who. in speaking truth, have the audacity to challenge the dialogue of power? I am disappointed that my question relating to the arbitrary detention of Julian …
dissidentvoice.org/2019/12/question-for-kirbymoorside-uk-hustings-meeting-would-you-stand-up-for-julian-assange99425/

Exiled NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden condemns persecution of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning
wsws.org | 2019-12-09
Edward Snowden gave an interview via live video link to The Right Livelihood Awards in Stockholm, in which he categorically defended WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange and imprisoned whistleblower Chelsea Manning.
www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/12/09/snow-d09.html

Supreme Court Allows Kentucky's Fetal Ultrasound Law to Stand
Staff | truthdig.com | 2019-12-09
WASHINGTON–The Supreme Court on Monday left in place a Kentucky law requiring doctors to perform ultrasounds and show fetal images to patients before abortions. | The justices did not comment in refusing to review an appeals court ruling that upheld the law. Enforcement of the law had been on hold pending the legal challenge but will begin shortly, said Steve Pitt, general counsel to Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin. | The American Civil Liberties Union had challenged the law on behalf of Kentucky's lone remaining abortion clinic. The ACLU argued that "display and describe" ultrasound laws violate physicians' speec…
truthdig.com/articles/supreme-court-allows-kentuckys-fetal-ultrasound-law-to-stand/

The Government Has Taken At Least 1,100 Children From Their Parents Since Family Separations Officially Ended
John Washington | theintercept.com | 2019-12-09
Border Patrol agents, untrained in child welfare, decide that some parents are unfit to stay with their children based on brief interactions in detention.
theintercept.com/2019/12/09/family-separation-policy-lawsuit/

Hunger-striker in Serious Condition
IMEMC News & Agencies | imemc.org | 2019-12-09
Ahmad Zahran, a Palestinian administrative detainee held in Israeli jails who has been on hunger strike for 78 consecutive days, in protest against his incarceration without charge or trial, is in serious health condition and has been admitted to an Israeli hospital, today, said the Palestinian Prisoner Society (PPS). Zahran, …
imemc.org/article/hunger-striker-in-serious-condition/

Arizona educators, progressives confront ALEC summit and Betsy DeVos
Fight Back | fightbacknews.org | 2019-12-09
Tucson, AZ – On December 4, a coalition of union educators, immigrant rights, police crimes, and climate change activists confronted the agenda of corporations like UPS and energy industry giants and billionaires like Charles Koch and Sheldon Achelson. At its height the crowd numbered around 200 with signs reading: "ALEC: Oligarchy in progress" and "Privatization, criminalization, incarceration, climate change, imperialism: #ALECisBehindIt." | The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a notorious organization of hardcore conservatives, was holding its States and Nation Policy Summit in Arizona. ALEC hoste…
fightbacknews.org/2019/12/8/arizona-educators-progressives-confront-alec-summit-and-betsy-devos

Meet Virgil Griffith: America's Newest Political Prisoner
Thomas Knapp | counterpunch.org | 2019-12-09
On November 29, FBI agents arrested hacker and cryptocurrency developer Virgil Griffith. His alleged crime: Talking. Yes, really. The FBI alleges that Griffith "participated in discussions regarding using cryptocurrency technologies to evade sanctions and launder money." Griffith, a US citizen who lives in Singapore, gave a talk at conference on blockchain technology in April. Because…
counterpunch.org/2019/12/09/meet-virgil-griffith-americas-newest-political-prisoner/

An Australian Tourist, a Bulgarian Prison, and a Recording Session
David Rovics | dissidentvoice.org | 2019-12-09
Bulgaria, it appears, is a captured state. I'll get to that in a minute. I first heard about Jock Palfreeman, an Australian serving a lengthy prison sentence in Bulgaria, through a fellow Australian. The context was a message from my friend Kamala that was straightforward, to the effect of, "would you write a song about …
dissidentvoice.org/2019/12/an-australian-tourist-a-bulgarian-prison-and-a-recording-session/

Black and Pink prisoner letter writing holiday card party
SubRosa Community Space | indybay.org | 2019-12-09
SubRosa Community Space | 703 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz…
indybay.org/newsitems/2019/12/08/18828760.php

Supreme Court Won't Hear Appeal of Kentucky's Forced Ultrasound Law, Allowing Law Intended to 'Shame' Patients Stand
Julia Conley, staff writer | commondreams.org | 2019-12-09
Kentucky will uphold a law reproductive rights groups say is intended only to "shame and intimidate" patients who seek abortion care, following the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on Monday not to hear an appeal to H.B. 2, or what the ACLU calls a "forced narrated ultrasound law." | www.commondreams.org/sites/default/files/styles/cd_special_coverage/public/headline/thumbs/5880678247_59510d0bff_o1_1_0_0.jpg
commondreams.org/news/2019/12/09/supreme-court-wont-hear-appeal-kentuckys-forced-ultrasound-law-allowing-law-intended?cd-origin=rss

Iran ready for big prisoner exchange with Washington but 'ball is in US' court' — Zarif
rt.com | 2019-12-09
Tehran is open to exchanging more prisoners with the US, but it is now time for Washington to make a move on it, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said, after a recent swap left more room for optimism. | "After getting our hostage back this week, fully ready for comprehensive prisoner exchange," Zarif tweeted on Monday. | The ball is in the US' court. | His words came after a two-person Swiss-brokered prisoner swap with Washington concluded over the weekend. Tehran released a…
rt.com/news/475402-zarif-us-prisoner-exchange/

Three Ways the "Fairness for All Act" Doesn't Protect LGBTQ People from Discrimination
Ian S. Thompson | aclu.org | 2019-12-09
On Friday, Congressman Chris Stewart (R-Utah) and | several of his Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives introduced | the so-called "Fairness for All Act." The bill is being described by its | supporters as a compromise that protects both LGBTQ people and religious | liberty. | In reality, the bill facilitates the Trump | administration's ongoing efforts to give a greenlight to those who would turn | LGBTQ people away from jobs, health care, housing, even taxpayer-funded | programs, simply because of who they are. The bill also weakens some | longstanding protections in federal and state laws…
aclu.org/news/lgbt-rights/three-ways-the-fairness-for-all-act-doesnt-protect-lgbtq-people-from-discrimination

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Reinstates Angela Davis' Award
patrick | bdsmovement.net | 2019-12-08
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Reinstates Angela Davis' Award: In the NewsThe organization faced backlash and internal dissension after previously rescinding the honor–a decision Davis and allies attributed to the racial justice activist's support for Palestinians' rights and BDS. | Right To BoycottJanuary 25, 2019 | By: | | COLORLINES …
bdsmovement.net/news/birmingham-civil-rights-institute-reinstates-angela-davis-award

US government drops case against Max Blumenthal after jailing journalist on false charges
Ben Norton | thegrayzone.com | 2019-12-07
As the mysterious disappearance of Secret Service records and complete absence of evidence supporting its case came to light, the…
thegrayzone.com/2019/12/07/us-government-dropped-charges-max-blumenthal-arrest/

Satanic Temple members say 'HELL NO' to discrimination after American Airlines forces woman to change 'HAIL SATAN' shirt
rt.com | 2019-12-07
Backers of the Satanic Temple are raising hell after American Airlines forced a Florida woman to change out of a shirt proclaiming "Hail Satan," threatening to remove her from the flight over its "offensive" message. | Key West resident Swati Runi Goyal was awaiting takeoff aboard a flight headed for Las Vegas on the day before Halloween — known in some regions as "Devil's Night" — when an American Airlines crew member approached her demanding an immediate wardrobe change. | "The gentleman asked me if I understood what 'offensive' meant," Goyal told the New York Post. "I said, 'I'm a foreign-born min…
rt.com/usa/475253-hail-satan-shirt-airline/

'We can make a deal together': Trump thanks Iran for 'very fair negotiation' that led to prisoner swap
rt.com | 2019-12-07
In a reprieve from the usual bellicose rhetoric, President Donald Trump thanked the leaders of Iran for swapping an American prisoner with a detained Iranian scientist. Senior officials, however, told a different story. | Princeton scholar Xiyue Wang left Iran for the US on Saturday morning, while Iranian Scientist Massoud Soleimani returned to Tehran from America. Wang had been in Iranian custody since 2016 and was serving a ten-year term on espionage charges, while Soleimani was arrested in Chicago last year for sanctions violations and was awaiting trial. | The prisoner exchange came after weeks of negotiat…
rt.com/usa/475297-trump-thanks-iran-prisoner/

Defense firm faked documents to bilk US government of $1.2 billion — lawsuit
rt.com | 2019-12-06
A defense contractor overcharged the Pentagon by more than $1.2 billion for thousands of armored vehicles, a whistleblower's complaint alleges. The company also threatened employees who refused to go along with the grift. | With Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks responsible for more than six in ten deaths of US personnel in Iraq and four in ten deaths in Afghanistan in 2007, the Pentagon solicited designs for a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle to replace its thin-s…
rt.com/usa/475243-defense-overcharged-mrap-lawsuit/

New Legislation Aims to End the "School to Confinement Pathway"
Alice Speri | theintercept.com | 2019-12-05
Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts introduced new legislation Thursday aimed at ending the "school to confinement pathway." The bill targets discriminatory and punitive school discipline policies that push black and brown students out of schools at disproportionately high rates, often directly into the criminal justice system. | The bill offers incentives to states and schools that commit to ban most suspensions and expulsions, as well as corporal punishment and the physical restraint of students. It also allots resources to the Education Department's Office of Civil Rights at a time when the Trump administrat…
theintercept.com/2019/12/05/criminalization-students-school-prison-pathway/

A Border Officer Told Me I Couldn't Opt Out of the Face Recognition Scan. They Were Wrong
Shaw Drake | aclu.org | 2019-12-05
"Look at the camera," a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) | officer told me as I approached the primary inspection point at the Paso del | Norte port of entry. | "Is that the face recognition technology?" I asked. "If so, I want to opt-out." | "Look at the camera." | "I want to opt-out." | "Look at the camera." | On the evening of November 25, 2019, I crossed from Mexico into the United States. Signs in the port noted the new use of face recognition technology and United States citizens' option to "undergo alternative procedures." After handing over my U.S. passport card, and despite my repeated protests…
aclu.org/news/immigrants-rights/a-border-officer-told-me-i-couldnt-opt-out-of-the-face-recognition-scan-they-were-wrong

'It's This Culture of Secrecy That's Pervading the Courts' – CounterSpin interview with Melissa Goodman on the PATRIOT Act
Janine Jackson | fair.org | 2019-12-05
Janine Jackson interviewed the ACLU's Melissa Goodman about the PATRIOT Act for the September 30, 2005, episode of CounterSpin–a conversation that was reaired on the November 29, 2019, show. This is a lightly edited transcript of the rebroadcast. | Media…
fair.org/home/its-this-culture-of-secrecy-thats-pervading-the-courts/

Edward Snowden: If I Came Back to the U.S., I Would Likely Die in Prison for Telling the Truth
Staff | democracynow.org | 2019-12-05
The Right Livelihood Awards celebrated their 40th anniversary Wednesday at the historic Cirkus Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, where more than a thousand people gathered to celebrate this year's four laureates: Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg; Chinese women's rights lawyer Guo Jianmei, Brazilian indigenous leader Davi Kopenawa and the organization he co-founded, the Yanomami Hutukara Association; and Sahrawi human rights leader Aminatou Haidar, who has challenged the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara for decades. The Right Livelihood Award is known as the "Alternative Nobel Prize." Over the past four deca…
www.democracynow.org/2019/12/5/edward_snowden_amy_goodman_interview_sweden

Aminatou Haidar Honored For Decades of Peaceful Resistance in Western Sahara, Africa's Last Colony
Staff | democracynow.org | 2019-12-05
In Stockholm, Democracy Now! sat down with one of the winners of this year's Right Livelihood Award: Sahrawi human rights leader Aminatou Haidar. For over three decades, Haidar has led a peaceful campaign to resist the Moroccan occupation of Western Sahara, which is often called Africa's last colony. Morocco has occupied Western Sahara — a small region just south of Morocco in northwest Africa — since 1975. Thousands have been tortured, imprisoned, killed and disappeared while resisting the occupation. Peaceful protesters, led by women, are routinely beaten in the streets. Despite this violent repress…
www.democracynow.org/2019/12/5/aminatou_haidar_sahrawi_activist_right_livelihood

Immigrant rights activists protest ICE detention at Sherburne County commissioners' meeting
Fight Back | fightbacknews.org | 2019-12-04
Elk River, MN – Immigrant rights activists mobilized to the Sherburne County commissioners' meeting at 9: 00 in the morning Tuesday, December 3 in Elk River, a town of around 20,000 people an hour northwest of Minneapolis. They held signs throughout the meeting, and several of them spoke passionately during the public comment section of the agenda, appealing to the commissioners to stop participating in and profiting from immigrant detention in the Sherburne County Jail. | The Sherburne County Jail has a contract for 300 beds to detain immigrants for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), making it the la…
fightbacknews.org/2019/12/4/immigrant-rights-activists-protest-ice-detention-sherburne-county-commissioners-meeting

SPLC lawsuit seeks to restore Mississippi citizens' right to vote
splcenter.org | 2019-12-04
When they were children, Herman Parker and his three sisters went to their grandparents' house every election day.
splcenter.org/news/2019/12/04/splc-lawsuit-seeks-restore-mississippi-citizens-right-vote

U.N. Report Finds Over 7 Million Children Worldwide Are Being Held in Various Kinds of Detention
Staff | democracynow.org | 2019-12-04
A damning United Nations report says that 7 million children are deprived of their liberty worldwide, from children imprisoned on the U.S.-Mexico border to the missing children of ISIS fighters. The Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty says that at least 410,000 of those children are detained in jails and prisons, where violence is "endemic." The study also found that the number of children detained in the context of armed conflict has dramatically risen. The global study was published in November, on the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the landmark international treaty affi…
www.democracynow.org/2019/12/4/un_report_seven_million_children_deprived

Congress Must Act to Protect the Right to Vote
Sonia Gill | aclu.org | 2019-12-03
Update 12/06/19: The House passed the Voting Rights Advancement Act, which would update the Voting Rights Act for the first time since it was last reauthorized in 2006. | Read the ACLU's report to Congress on the importance of restoring the Voting Rights Act. | This week, the House is expected to vote on H.R. 4, the Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019. The bill would help ensure racial barriers to voting are removed from elections across the country. Passing the VRAA will advance needed protections for people whose right to vote is under attack based…
aclu.org/news/voting-rights/congress-must-act-to-protect-the-right-to-vote

Meet Yetnebersh Nigussie: A Blind Ethiopian Lawyer Fighting for Global Disability Rights
Staff | democracynow.org | 2019-12-03
December 3 is International Day of Persons With Disabilities. "Unfortunately, disability-based discrimination is still a global phenomenon," says Yetnebersh Nigussie, a lawyer and disability rights activist from Ethiopia who in 2017 received the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the "Alternative Nobel Prize." Nigussie is the director for advocacy and rights at Light for the World and the former chair of the Ethiopian National Association of the Blind women's wing. She has been blind since the age of five. Yetnebersh Nigussie speaks with us in Stockholm. She is one of many former Right Livelihood Award recipie…
www.democracynow.org/2019/12/3/international_day_of_persons_with_disabilities

Prison By Any Other Name: A Report on South Florida Detention Facilities
splcenter.org | 2019-12-02
splcenter.org/20191209/prison-any-other-name-report-south-florida-detention-facilities

Reducing HIV Transmission Requires Decriminalizing Sex Work
LaLa B Holston-Zannell | aclu.org | 2019-12-01
Transgender people are criminalized for our bodies. | We are profiled, stereotyped, and presumed | guilty based on the way we look or for failing to meet gender expectations, and | it must stop. | Nearly one | in six transgender people has been incarcerated. For trans people of color, | the number is one in two. It's staggering, and it demonstrates the deep bias in | our current laws and criminal justice system. | This World AIDS Day, let's not forget that transgender | women –…
aclu.org/news/hiv/reducing-hiv-transmission-requires-decriminalizing-sex-work

"If I Could Just Look at Her"
Ashoka Mukpo | aclu.org | 2019-11-27
Watch the journey of two separated parents trying to cross the border and reunite with their children.: | " data-whitelisted="false" data-domain="www.youtube.com"> | In October, the Trump administration admitted that in a 12-month period, beginning in July 2017, it separated 4,370 immigrant children from their parents at the border. Since then, over 1,000 more have been separated under a dubious loophole that all…
aclu.org/news/immigrants-rights/if-i-could-just-look-at-her

We're Grateful for the Constitution
David Cole | aclu.org | 2019-11-26
Thanksgiving is here: that time of year when we pause to take stock of all we're grateful for. At the ACLU, we're saying thanks for all the crucial wins from our legal teams — and for the Constitution. | In just the last few months, we've racked up many essential victories in the ongoing battle to protect civil liberties and civil rights. The scope of these victories is breathtaking: they span criminal justice, privacy, religious freedom, reproductive rights, due process for immigrants, racial justice, LGBTQ rights, and the right to protest the Keystone pipeline, among others. We've won crucial victories…
aclu.org/news/civil-liberties/were-grateful-for-the-constitution

After parole, Alabama man gets life back on track, helps others
Kathryn Casteel | splcenter.org | 2019-11-21
Chris "Champ" Napier started speaking to students and at-risk youth about his experience in prison before he knew he would ever regain his freedom.
splcenter.org/news/2019/12/03/after-parole-alabama-man-gets-life-back-track-helps-others

Neo-Nazi Group NSM Faces New Upheaval After James Hart Stern's Death
Hatewatch Staff and Brett Barrouquere | splcenter.org | 2019-11-13
The leadership of the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement (NSM) has been thrown into chaos again following the death of self-described civil rights activist James Hart Stern.
splcenter.org/hatewatch/2019/11/13/neo-nazi-group-nsm-faces-new-upheaval-after-james-hart-sterns-death