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The Racism & Social Injustice Catch-All
After an interview was discovered at Auburn of Gov. Kay Ivey of Alabama talking about her participation in a blackface skit, her office reached out to black lawmakers to apologize and the governor has released a statement and the recording:

Quote:Gov. Kay Ivey is contacting state legislators, and apologizing for her role in a racist student skit from her time as an Auburn student.

Ivey was president of her Alpha Gamma Delta pledge class at Auburn. Photos of her sorority sisters in blackface emerged earlier this year. None showed the governor.

But Thursday she apologized after audio emerged of a skit at a Baptist Student Union Party. The audio is a radio interview of Ivey and her then-fiance. Ivey’s then-fiance describes Ivey as wearing blue coveralls and said she “had put some black paint all over her face.”

Fiance Ben LaRavia in the interview said they were acting out a skit called “cigar butts” that “did not require a lot of talent, as far as verbal talent, but did require a lot oef physical acting, such as crawling around on the floor looking for cigar butts and things like this, which certainly got a big reaction out of the audience.”

In a statement, Ivey said:

“I have now been made aware of a taped interview that my then-fiance, Ben LaRavia, and I gave to the Auburn student radio station back when I was SGA Vice President. 

“Even after listening to the tape, I sincerely do not recall either the skit, which evidently occurred at a Baptist Student Union party, or the interview itself, both which occurred 52-years ago. Even though Ben is the one on tape remembering the skit – and I still don’t recall ever dressing up in overalls or in blackface – I will not deny what is the obvious. 

“As such, I fully acknowledge – with genuine remorse – my participation in a skit like that back when I was a senior in college. 

“While some may attempt to excuse this as acceptable behavior for a college student during the mid-1960s, that is not who I am today, and it is not what my Administration represents all these years later. 

“I offer my heartfelt apologies for the pain and embarrassment this causes, and I will do all I can – going forward – to help show the nation that the Alabama of today is a far cry from the Alabama of the 1960s. We have come a long way, for sure, but we still have a long way to go.” 
Well, this is terrible:

Quote:A Denver woman gave birth alone in her jail cell, without any help from on-duty nurses and deputies, as surveillance cameras captured the entire experience, according to a federal lawsuit filed Wednesday.

Diana Sanchez welcomed her baby boy into the world on July 31 last year, on what "should have been one of the happiest days of her life," her suit filed in U.S. District Court in Denver says.

Instead, it was "a day of unnecessary terror, pain and humiliation that continues to cause her ongoing emotional trauma," the lawsuit says.

Video of the incident was supplied to NBC News by Sanchez's lawyer.

The plaintiff, now 27, was booked into Denver County Jail on July 14, 2018, over an identity theft charge for writing a check off her sister's account, Sanchez's lawyer, Mari Newman, told NBC News on Thursday.

The new inmate told her jailers she was eight months pregnant, the lawsuit says.

About two weeks later, at 5 a.m. July 31, Sanchez told a deputy that she was going into labor. She eventually "spoke with Denver deputies and Denver Health nurses at least eight times that morning, informing them each time she was experiencing contractions," the lawsuit claims.

"Instead of getting Ms. Sanchez and her baby immediate medical attention," nurses and deputies at the jail "chose to take a 'wait and see' approach to their care, as though it were not patently obvious to anyone — with or without medical training — that Ms. Sanchez was in labor and required immediate medical attention," the suit says.

For hours, the pregnant woman screamed in agony, which was "obvious to jail and medical staff alike, via a video feed from her cell" and yet "they took no action to provide" care, the suit claims.

The baby was born at 10:44 a.m., and Denver Fire Department paramedics showed up at about 11 a.m. They clipped the umbilical cord and gave treatment, the suit says.
Cops are bastards. Cops are bastards. Cops are bastards.
"Why did she do it?"
"Why are you the fucking Police?"

This Alabama man was sentenced without parole for stealing $50.75 from a bakery.  After 36 years, a judge re-sentenced him and he'll be getting out of prison shortly:

Quote:A man in Alabama just had his sentence changed so that he’ll be getting out of prison in the next few days.

His crime: Stealing $50.75 from a bakery 36 years ago.

Alvin Kennard was 22 years old when he was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole back in 1984. Alabama state law at the time mandated that since it was his fourth offense, the judge had no other option than to sentence him to life in prison.

That law, the Habitual Felony Offender Act, has since been changed so that judges now have the option of giving fourth-time offenders the possibility of parole. But when that change took place in the early 2000s it wasn’t made retroactive, so it didn’t automatically prompt a re-sentencing in Kennard’s case.

Instead, it was the curiosity of a judge that led to the re-sentencing of Kennard, who is now 58 years old.

"The judge in this case noticed how odd it seemed that someone was serving life without parole for a $50 robbery," said Kennard’s attorney, Carla Crowder, who said it was Jefferson County Bessemer Cutoff Circuit Judge David Carpenter who saw Kennard’s case when some documents came across his desk.

"This was a judge that kind of went out of his way," Crowder told ABC News.
Hey that’s like 1000 bucks today!

Wedding chapel refused to host an interracial marrage because religious beliefs.
Reforming cash bail would be great, but it's a big fight:

Quote:The unassuming tan building with green and burnt orange accents sits on a small hill before the jail. There is no way to miss Lederman Bail Bonds on the way in or out of the correctional complex.

It's the family business -- run by four brothers who have operations across Iowa and the rest of the Midwest. But behind the familiar drive-thru window set up is a well-funded political force with an agenda to stop the jail at the bottom of the hill from making any changes to a bail system that keeps their profits rolling in.

Across the country, bail bond companies like the ones owned by the Ledermans are up in revolt, fighting back against states' efforts to rethink and overhaul an antiquated money bail system.

Corrections officials, jail runners, judges, public defenders, civil rights groups, and bipartisan leaders alike agree that the system in place that handles the presumed innocent is broken.

As structured, the bail bonds industry survives largely off those who don't have the financial resources to post bail. Overwhelmingly, the service of a bail bondsman is their only way out of jail. Bail bond companies make money by charging a fee -- typically 10% of a defendant's bail amount. So if a defendant has bond set at $50,000, the bail bond company charges $5,000 to get them out. No matter what, the bonds company will collect that charge -- guilty or not guilty. Even if the charges are dropped. That is the price and process of release.

Those who can't afford the 10% the bond company charges can set up a payment plan, usually in small installments like $100 a week until the big bill is paid off. Contracts like those tether vulnerable families to debts that can linger on for years -- landing them in court for missed payments, with garnished wages and accruing interest. Experts say defendants will sometimes plead guilty to lesser charges, even if they are innocent, in order to avoid the bail system and get out of jail sooner.

More affluent defendants, who can afford to post bond with their own money, go free and get the money back provided they show up for their court dates.

Reform efforts across the country seek to make the bail system less burdensome on the poor. The majority of states addressing the issue are trying to make money bail the last resort, by mandating that judges apply the "least onerous release conditions possible" and consider the defendant's ability to pay, as well as eliminating money bail for low-level charges. As a result, the $2-billion-a-year bail bonds industry is in a fight for its very survival.

A CNN review of all 50 states and the District of Columbia found that the powerful industry has derailed, stalled or killed reform efforts in at least nine states, which combined cover more than one third of the country's population.

To date, more than 25 states have passed laws or enacted changes that address bail practices, while several still have pending efforts or bail procedure review committees in the works.

The story of bail reform is as messy as it is laborious. It's a long road of continuous push and pull between stakeholders. Even among reformers, there's disagreement over how best to do it. A popular remedy is using some sort of computerized "risk assessment" tool that evaluates the likelihood a person would show up for court based on criteria such as age, past failures to appear for court and criminal convictions. However, some scholars and civil rights activists, including the ACLU, oppose such tools, saying they are flawed and often racially biased.

Whether attempting sweeping or modest change, lawmakers have described the bail industry's involvement as nasty and contentious.
A good read on the next step in criminal justice reform: making it easier for people released from prison to find housing.
Gurratan Singh is a Sikh and a Canadian politician who has been attacked as "Muslim" before.  That happened again:

Quote:Earlier this week, Canadian MPP Gurratan Singh stood up to a bigot interrogating him about ‘Sharia.’

Instead of deflecting hate to Muslims, he said “racism is wrong.”

This is what love looks like.

Video at the link.
Suicide rates jumped 41% and increased faster and more significantly in rural, American counties:

Quote:Suicide is becoming more common in America, an increase most pronounced in rural areas, new research has found.

The study, which appears online today (Sept. 6, 2019) in the journal JAMA Network Open, also highlights a cluster of factors, including lack of insurance and the prevalence of gun shops, that are associated with high suicide rates.

Researchers at The Ohio State University evaluated national suicide data from 1999 to 2016, and provided a county-by-county national picture of the suicide toll among adults. Suicide rates jumped 41 percent, from a median of 15 per 100,000 county residents in the first part of the study to 21.2 per 100,000 in the last three years of the analysis. Suicide rates were highest in less-populous counties and in areas where people have lower incomes and fewer resources. From 2014 through 2016, suicide rates were 17.6 per 100,000 in large metropolitan counties compared with 22 per 100,000 in rural counties.

In urban areas, counties with more gun shops tended to have higher suicide rates. Counties with the highest suicide rates were mostly in Western states, including Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming; in Appalachian states including Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia; and in the Ozarks, including Arkansas and Missouri.

“While our findings are disheartening, we’re hopeful that they will help guide efforts to support Americans who are struggling, especially in rural areas where suicide has increased the most and the fastest,” said lead researcher Danielle Steelesmith, a postdoctoral fellow at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.

“Suicide is so complex, and many factors contribute, but this research helps us understand the toll and some of the potential contributing influences based on geography, and that could drive better efforts to prevent these deaths.”
Turns out that false alarm mass panic at Newark Airport was all because one airline employee's, uhm, economic uncertainty.
Finally saw some movement on this story:

Quote:A St. Louis police officer pleaded guilty to a federal charge Friday and admitted lying to both the FBI and a federal grand jury about the arrest and assault of an undercover colleague in 2017.

Bailey Colletta, 26, could now face years in prison and has agreed to give up her state license to be a law enforcement officer.

The arrest of Detective Luther Hall came during a series of protests that followed the Sept. 15, 2017, acquittal of former St. Louis police Officer Jason Stockley on a murder charge. The indictment of Colletta and three colleagues more than a year later alleged that some officers exchanged expletive-laced texts expressing “excitement about using unjustified force against (protesters) and going undetected while doing so,” and led to claims that investigators were ignoring the complaints of similar treatment by protesters who were not undercover officers.

Colletta and other officers of the Civil Disobedience Team ran into Hall near the intersection of 14th and Olive streets downtown, and believed he was a protester, her plea says. There was “very little protest activity” in the area at the time, Colletta’s plea says.

Officers tackled Hall as he was following Colletta’s orders and getting to his knees. He did not appear to be committing a crime, there was no probable cause for an arrest, and he did not do anything to justify the use of physical force, Assistant U.S. Attorney Reginald Harris said in court. 

She learned Hall’s identity the next day, and began to learn of his injuries. In June 2018, she found out from her then-boyfriend, Randy Hays, that the FBI was investigating. Hays had found out at a union meeting discussing the investigation.

Colletta admitted on Friday that she told an FBI agent in June 2018 that she didn’t know who Hall was and didn’t come into contact with him on the night of his arrest. Colletta then made a series of false and misleading statements to grand jurors, among them: that Hall was “brought to the ground very gently,” Harris said. She also gave grand jurors “misleading and inconsistent explanations” about what she falsely called a “textbook arrest” of Hall.
An ICE agent actually opened fire on immigrants outside a south Nashville grocery store:

Quote:On Thursday September 5, 2019, an Immigration Customs and Enforcement agent approached three men in a white work van parked in the Food Lion located in Antioch, TN. The Food Lion parking lot is used as an informal rideshare parking. Neighbors have expressed fear and anxiety over the fact that ICE has escalated a civil matter into the use of deadly force. The MIX denounces terrorizing of community members, using lethal force against our neighbors, and calls on our local elected officials to end cooperation with ICE.

The plain-clothed Immigration Customs and Enforcement agent approached three men in a parked white work van and requested to see IDs without any reported provocation or necessity. Two of the men in the van provided their IDs. However, the third person exercised his right to refuse to show his ID without a judicial warrant. Then the ICE agent fired an unconfirmed number of gunshots at the man who refused to show his ID.

The victim managed to escape in the box truck that was found parked in a neighborhood trailer park nearby. Federal officials and MNPD are still looking for the victim and are currently unaware of his whereabouts. Members of the MIX’s program Migra Watch were the first on the scene and arrived to start a live stream and record the incident.
The only difference between an ICE agent and a mass shooter is that one googled, "How to fake your way through a psych eval".
Gamertag: Tweakee
A police officer in Fresno, California repeatedly punched a black teenager for ‘resisting’ — but new bodycam footage shows otherwise:

Video at the link, which might not be safe for work.  The charges were dropped after the footage was released.
It's so weird that fictional dystopias always had cameras everywhere, WATCHING US... and now in our reality they're here, and they're an overwhelmingly positive thing.
Gamertag: Tweakee
Who watches the watchmen?
"Why did she do it?"
"Why are you the fucking Police?"

New HIV cases have hit a record low in San Francisco, but infections are spiking among the homeless:

Quote:The number of new HIV diagnoses in San Francisco has dropped again to a record low, officials said in a report issued Tuesday, but disparities based on race and gender remain and the proportion of homeless people contracting the virus is rising.
Purdue Pharma reached a settlement in an opioids case, but there's no admission of wrongdoing:

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