Thursday, May 25, 2017

Miss Black Texas: I Was Arrested Over 'Color of My Skin'

The winner of Miss Black Texas 2016 says she was harassed and berated by a North Texas police chief who called her a "black b----," and then was unlawfully detained and arrested.  

Carmen Ponder recounted her alleged interaction with Commerce Police Chief Kerry Crews in a Twitter post Tuesday. She is calling for police accountability and wants charges filed against Crews. 

In her account, Ponder wrote that she was driving to a Wal-Mart in Commerce Saturday when a black truck cut in front of her car and began driving erratically, braking and accelerating. Ponder said she turned on her blinker, pulled around to pass the truck and then drove into the Wal-Mart parking lot.

Click here for video. 


Trump Paved The Way For Montana Politician’s Body Slam

GOP candidate Greg Gianforte

Donald Trump set a hostile precedent for how to treat journalists during his campaign. 

By Nida Khan

Journalists have long been the target of attacks, harassment, acts of intimidation, arrests and even death around the world. In this country however, most journalists and most Americans for that matter, have been shielded from some of the harsher realities the press faces in other parts of the globe. That all may be changing now – and it’s not a good thing.

Wednesday night, news broke that Guardian’s reporter Ben Jacobs was allegedly body-slammed by House GOP candidate Greg Gianforte on the eve of Montana’s special election. According to Fox News reporters who were in the room when the attack reportedly happened: “Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground behind him.” They go on to say that they watched in disbelief as Gianforte then began punching the reporter.

Perhaps the most damning part of the entire account is when the eyewitnesses say: “To be clear, at no point did any of us who witnessed this assault see Jacobs show any form of physical aggression toward Gianforte, who left the area after giving statements to local sheriff’s deputies.”

Prior to the release of the Fox News account, Gianforte’s office put out a defensive statement which included the following: “Greg then attempted to grab the phone that was pushed in his face. Jacobs grabbed Greg’s wrist, and spun away from Greg, pushing them both to the ground. It’s unfortunate that this aggressive behavior from a liberal journalist created this scene at our campaign volunteer BBQ.”

This framing of a ‘liberal journalist’ or ‘liberal media’ is nothing new. We’ve heard it time and again from conservative politicians, pundits and the right’s echo chamber for years now (despite the fact that most media isn’t liberal by any stretch of that word). 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The Huffington Post

President Trump Participates in the NATO Unveiling of the Article 5 and Berlin Wall Memorials (Full Video)

This video was published on YouTube on May 25, 2017.

2017 Cybersecurity Conference Opening with Ted Koppel

This video was published on YouTube on March 20, 2017. 

Ted Koppel, legendary anchor, journalist, and author of "Lights Out," opens the 2017 Energy Grid Cybersecurity conference. Co-hosted by the Siebel Scholars program and the Siebel Energy Institute, the conference examined the frequency, nature, sources, and potential impact of cyber-attacks on U.S. critical infrastructure, with a concentration on the power grid. 

Source: Siebel Scholars

U.S. Warship Sails Within 12 Miles of China-Claimed Reef

Source: Wochit News

Steven Mnuchin Testifies on FY 2018 Budget and Tax Reform

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin testified before the Senate Finance Committee regarding the president’s fiscal year 2018 budget request for the department, as well as his plans to overhaul the tax code.

Click here for video. 

Source: C-SPAN

House Speaker Weekly Briefing

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) holds his weekly briefing with reporters at the Capitol and responds to questions on a range of topics including the CBO score of the American Health Care Act.

Click here for video. 

Source: C-SPAN

House Minority Leader Weekly Briefing

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi holds her weekly briefing with reporters at the U.S. Capitol and fields questions on a range of issues including the CBO score on the American Health Care Act and the president’s fiscal year 2018 budget.

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

The President Just Made a Titanic Foreign Policy Shift. The Media Missed It.

By Newt Gingrich 

Newt Gingrich, a Republican from Georgia, was speaker of the House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999. He served as vice chair of the Trump transition team and is the author of the book “Understanding Trump,” which is scheduled to be released in June.

This newspaper’s legendary former publisher, Philip Graham, famously described journalism as the business of writing the “first rough draft of history.” This week, as President Trump gave a historic speech in Saudi Arabia before the leaders of more than 50 Muslim-majority nations, journalism’s first draft missed the history almost entirely.

While the media focused on the ephemeral questions — whether the president would use campaign rhetoric in a diplomatic setting, or how the trip would affect the Obama legacy — they largely missed the real drama of the moment: a titanic shift in U.S. foreign policy occurring right before their eyes.

Trump stood before an unprecedented gathering of leaders to do something far more significant than utter a single phrase or undermine his predecessor’s record. He was there to rally the Muslim world, in his words, “to meet history’s great test” — defeating the forces of terrorism and extremism. He did so in a way that no American president ever had before. While extending a hand of friendship to Muslim nations, he also issued them a clear challenge: to take the lead in solving the crisis that has engulfed their region and spread across the planet. “Drive out the terrorists and extremists,” he urged them, or consign your peoples to futures of misery and squalor.

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The Washington Post

Saving Our Youth: S.T.R.O.N.G. Youth

This video was published on YouTube on December 18, 2013. 


Black Man Found Not Guilty of Crime, Still Sentenced to 7 Years In Prison


In today’s example of how the American justice system treats black bodies, we take a look at Ramad Chatman, a 24-year-old man who was found not guilty by a jury of his peers but will serve seven years in prison because ...

Come on, you know why. Read the first two words of the headline again.

According to The Independent, in 2012 Chatman was convicted of breaking and entering for stealing a television worth $120. It was his first offense, but because he was—again, you know why—Chatman was sentenced to five years’ probation. You read that right. He was 19, and a judge thought it necessary to make him property of the state for half a decade.

During his probation period, court papers show that he paid his restitution, attended every meeting, finished his community service and even kept himself employed.

Unbeknownst to Chatman, he was identified as a suspect in a convenience store robbery in 2014. Although he was on probation, which means that he was required to submit his whereabouts to law-enforcement officials monthly, Chatman was never arrested for the robbery. 

Click here for the full article.


Trailblazers in Black History: Alexander Augusta

Four African-American Mothers File Lawsuit Against Mississippi for Education Equality

The paint on the walls of Raines School in Jackson, Mississippi, is chipped and litters the floor, snakes roam around the playground and only 15 out of the school's 376 students are at grade level for math but Precious Hughes says it's the only option for her 6-year-old kindergartner.

"The school is dark, gloomy and uninviting. It feels like a prison," she said. "Not even the teachers want to show up because the school has nothing, but that's where we live."

Raines School, which is over 99 percent African-American, is part of 19 school districts that got an "F" from the Mississippi State Department of Education.

The other 18 school districts with failing assessments have a majority African-American student populations topping over 81 percent.

The pattern is not coincidental, says the Southern Poverty Law Center, a non-profit watchdog group. 

Click here for the full article. 

Ronald Gray, on Military Death Row, Loses Latest Appeal

A serial rapist and murderer who could be the first inmate put to death by the military in more than 50 years has lost his latest appeal.

Private Ronald Gray asked the Army Court of Criminal Appeals to vacate his death sentence, claiming he was incompetent to stand trial and had ineffective lawyers. He also challenged the whole notion of capital punishment and argued the death penalty is racially biased. 

Click here for the full article. 

Health Care Bill Impact on Premiums, Uninsured, Pre-existing Conditions

WASHINGTON — The GOP health care bill would insure 23 million fewer people than current law after a decade, while potentially impacting many with pre-existing conditions, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

The bill would spend $1.1 trillion less on health care and use the savings primarily to finance large tax cuts for high-income earners and medical companies. Overall, it would reduce deficits by $119 billion over ten years.

While some Americans would see lower premiums, CBO concluded that many people with pre-existing conditions would no longer be able to afford insurance and that many who received coverage would pay thousands of dollars more in out-of-pocket expenses. 

Click here for the full article. 

Trump Slams NATO Allies: 23 of 28 Nations ‘Still Not Paying’ Fair Share

During a ceremony at NATO headquarters in Brussels, President Trump faults NATO allies for not making full contributions to the alliance for common defense measures, especially against terrorism.