Civility and the evil that men do

Recently, we’ve seen the President of the United States call the press our "biggest enemy”. We’ve seen right-wing extremists call for the assassination of journalists and liberals. A Black Democratic woman who is a member of Congress has had to call off public appearances because of death threats after she called for non-violent protest against the members of our hideously corrupt and immoral administration that is kidnapping children and holding them in concentration camps.

Welcome to the world I lived in during the 1980s and 1990s.

Annapolis newspaper shooting reveals the dark side of Facebook

Sometimes a blast from the past is the last thing you need:

In what a judge called "rather bizarre" behavior, Ramos used Facebook to contact a woman he knew in high school and then sent her threatening emails, called her vulgar names and told her to kill herself, court documents and the article say. "If you're on Facebook, you've probably gotten a friend request or message from an old high school classmate you didn't quite remember," the article begins. "For one woman, that experience turned into a yearlong nightmare."

The article says Ramos contacted the woman and thanked her for being kind to him in high school. She wrote back, and they emailed. She suggested he see a counselor. Then, he lashed out at her. She "lived in fear for her safety for months," the article says.

I recently told a small group of people if they really wanted to use social media to advocate for a cause, they needed to let down their drawbridges. Make their posts public, so they can be shared and/or found in searches. And we discussed the positive and negative aspects of increased exposure. At one point I told them that "stranger danger" is a virtually non-existent threat, because most Internet trolls are basically cowards at heart, and stifling your advocacy is their main goal. This horrible incident does not change my views on that. She knew this guy from high school, he did not fit the classic definition of "stranger." And after he got in trouble over harassing her, he transferred his rage to the newspaper that told everybody else about his obsession:

The evil among us

I've long resisted acknowledging the presence of evil. The very act of saying things brings them into existence, and some things, I thought, were better left unspoken. Then Trump emerged, evil incarnate, contagious as the plague.

Journalists assassinated. Children ripped from families. Unrestrained greed. Never-ending lies. Democracy subverted. These things are evil, there is no other way to describe them.

Friday News: Partisan hackery


LEGISLATIVE REPUBLICANS BLOCK SEVERAL COOPER APPOINTMENTS: Legislative Republicans turned back a number of Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's appointments Thursday, giving little reason for the opposition in a couple of cases. Cooper's three State Board of Education appointments had been pending more than a year, a running source of friction between the administration and the GOP-controlled legislature. Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger said the Cooper administration didn't consult legislators before naming his appointees, a misstep that "bothered a number of people." Democrats said it sounded like partisan politics to them. The governor's office pointed out that the legislature confirmed people from Gov. Pat McCrory's administration to similar positions in the past, including his chief of staff's wife, who was appointed to the Industrial Commission two weeks before McCrory left office.

North Carolinians for a Fair Economy video

Tax Cuts For Billionaires Threaten Healthcare for Dying Man and His Family

This week, “Not One Penny” - an organization which advocates for repeal of the Trump Tax Plan in order to support health care, Medicare, and Medicaid - is up with digital ad featuring Ady Barkan, a longtime healthcare advocate who is dying of ALS. Barkan calls out Congressman George Holding for dismantling healthcare protections with his support for the GOP tax law favoring billionaires and millionaires.

Two white cops charged with crimes after shooting black men who were fleeing

But being charged is a long way from being convicted:

A white Pennsylvania police officer was charged with criminal homicide just eight days after fatally shooting an unarmed black teenager in the back in a case built quickly on the testimony of multiple witnesses, video and the officer's own conflicting statements.

"You do not shoot someone in the back if they are not a threat to you," Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala said. East Pittsburgh officer Michael Rosfeld was charged Wednesday in the June 19 shooting death of 17-year-old Antwon Rose Jr. after the teen fled from a traffic stop.

In this case, the officer in question was brand new, had just been sworn in less than two hours before this shooting took place. Meaning, he probably wasn't allowed to carry a sidearm until then. But he wasn't a "rookie" in the classic sense, he had been a cop for the University of Pittsburgh for six years prior to this, until he was terminated for cause (don't know the cause yet, so don't click it). So there was apparently something hinky about this guy that was known beforehand, just as there was in this Georgia case also being prosecuted:

Thursday News: Tyranny of the majority


NC REPUBLICANS DANCE BACK AND FORTH WITH VETO OVERRIDES AND CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS: Three of the seven vetoes Gov. Roy Cooper issued late Monday have been overridden and are now law. They are the Farm Act, with its controversial provision insulating hog farms from lawsuits by neighbors, changes to the early voting schedule and rollbacks of various state regulations. The House quickly overrode two other vetoes but didn't even touch the final two. The Senate has yet to take up any of the four remaining. Both chambers also continue to pass proposed amendments back and forth. The Senate gave final approval to an amendment that would once again overhaul the structure of the state elections board. The measure, if approved by voters in November, also would asset legislative authority to appoint people to dozens of state boards and commissions.


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