A comprehensive list of at least one hundred separate incidents in the past week where law enforcement was violent with press at protests over the police killing of George Floyd.
Over the past few days, Nick Waters / @n_waters89 of Bellingcat has collected over 100 photos and videos showing American police violently attacking credentialed reporters.
More at Mediagazer. Here are excerpts from the thread.
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A group of unmasked shoppers attacked a Target employee escorting them from the store, reports the Mercury News, breaking his arm and earning themselves battery charges. It's the fourth such incident at the Van Nuys store, and the first to result in serious injury.
The incident occurred on the morning of May 1 in a Target in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Van Nuys, the Los Angeles Police Department said. The police released surveillance video of the incident on Monday. Two customers had been ordered to leave the store because they didn’t have masks, and security guards were escorting them toward the exit. One of the customers then turned and attacked the guards.
I occasionally blog about the "exonerative tense", a style of news-writing that poses as impartial (or necessary to avoid legal liability) but echoes the weird, implicitly victim-blaming language of police reports. Here's a beauty from CNN today:
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A contestant on the Romanian edition of Survivor lost a challenge, became angry, then punched and headbutted another contestant, apparently breaking his nose. Read the rest
A forthcoming book by two New York Times journalists reveals that Donald Trump suggested shooting migrants in the legs, to slow them down. The remark was uttered in a White House meeting, and was only the most blantantly sadistic of the various stupid and deranged suggestions they claim he made.
The book - called Border Wars: Inside Trump's Assault on Immigration, by reporters Michael Shear and Julie Davis, and based on interviews with more than a dozen unnamed officials - was published by the New York Times. It chronicles a week in March 2019 when Mr Trump reportedly tried to halt all southern migration to the US.
According to an excerpt, the president privately suggested to aides that soldiers shoot migrants in the legs, but he was told it would be illegal.
Another: a border moat containing snakes and alligators. Read the rest
Nothing worth saying about this man can safely be said—at least on Twitter. Read the rest
For two decades, the Phoenix police union has had a secret deal with the police department that required that the disciplinary records of cops would be "purged," so that no one, not even their supervisors, would be able to retrieve them.
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58-year-old Republican lawmaker Douglas McLeod was arrested this week after allegedly punching his wife in the face for not undressing quickly enough when he wanted sex.
McLeod, Mississippi state representative for Lucedale, was "intoxicated and holding a glass of alcohol in his hand" when deputies responded to his home late Saturday, reports the Sun-Herald. He was charged with misdemeanor domestic violence and released on a $1,000 signature bond.
McLeod tried to explain to deputies that everything was OK, then said something else the deputies said they couldn’t understand because of his slurred speech. When deputies went inside, they saw two women standing at the top of a stairwell, both of whom the deputies described as frightened. McLeod’s wife eventually came outside after deputies assured her they would keep her away from her husband. The deputy said McLeod’s wife was shaking and upset. McLeod’s wife said her husband was drunk and “just snapped,” as he often does when under the influence of alcohol, the report said.
More details from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
The lawmaker's wife said McLeod was intoxicated and "snapped" because she undressed too slowly when he wanted sex, authorities said. She told deputies that he struck her in the face, giving her a bloody nose.
McLeod's wife then fled to the other woman's room, the report said. He banged on the locked door and threatened to kill the woman's dog if she didn't let him in, the woman told deputies.
What a way to celebrate a vote for an abortion ban. Read the rest
The FBI describes the group Proud Boys as an “extremist group with ties to white nationalism” in a document provided to reporters by law enforcement in the state of Washington. Read the rest
A gunman opened fire at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh Saturday, killing at least 11 people while shouting "All Jews must die". The man, identified by KDKA as Robert Bowers, opened fire upon police when they arrived, injuring three officers. Bowers, who is white, was then taken into custody
"The scene is very bad inside," said Wendell Hissrich, Pittsburgh's director of pblic safety.
The SWAT team had been talking with the suspect, and he was crawling and injured. Police sources tell KDKA’s Andy Sheehan the gunman walked into the building and yelled, “All Jews Must die.” Sheehan confirmed that eight people were confirmed dead. Others had been shot but the extent of their injuries in unknown at this time. Police have requested that residents stay inside their home as they exchanged gun fire with a suspected gunman.
Squirrel Hill is Pittsburgh's biggest Jewish neighborhood. Social media profiles associated with Bowers (and archived by Laura Rozen before their deactivation) show a Neo-Nazi Qanon true believer ranting about "invaders", "globalists", and the Jews: "there is no #MAGA as long as there is a kike infestation."
"Officials are looking to determine whether or not this was a hate crime," adds ABC News.
Updates: Bowers confirmed as the shooter by KDKA; death toll.
Here's CBS live:
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Brennan Walker, a 14-year-old black boy, missed his school bus and tried to walk to school. Getting lost, he knocked on Jeffrey Ziegler's door to ask for directions. Ziegler, a 53-year-old white man, walked shirtless onto his porch armed with a shotgun and fired it at Walker. Though claiming the gun went off accidentally when he tripped, his own porch camera shows him calmly taking aim at the boy, who escaped unharmed. The video was released today in Ziegler's attempted murder trial.
Also taking the stand Tuesday was Detective Shawn Pace, who said during his investigation, his assessment of what had allegedly happened at the Zeigler house — a home invasion attempt — changed as he watched the surveillance video.
Ziegler is why black boys run. Pace is why black men kneel. Read the rest
We haven't talked about Nicaragua for a while. But things still aren't going well down there, so let's get back on that shit.
According to the Financial Times, Nicaragua's national police released a statement on Friday that declared demonstrations--of which, in Nicaragua, there are many--to be illegal. The day after making this declaration, riot police were employed to break up a gaggle of protesters prepping for a march. It's just another step down the country's short, bloody road into becoming a fascist, autocratic state.
Nicaragua's been in turmoil since last April, as protesters took to the streets to first sound off about some pretty shitty reforms to their pension system and other important issues such as a lack of government response to imminent threats from forest fires and the nation's eroding infrastructure. As the protests fell on deaf ears, the protesters started to demand the resignation of the nation's oh-so-corrupt president, Daniel Ortega. Once this happened, it didn't take long for the peaceful protests to turn violent, thanks to the actions of the police and masked paramilitary types loyal to the Ortega government. Defenseless students were fired on whilst taking refuge from the police in a Catholic church. Academics and other individuals deemed to be a "terrorist threat" to Ortega's rule have been carted away by paramilitary units. Hundreds have died in the months since these clashes began. The Nicaraguan economy, which was never all that strong to begin with, is circling the drain as investment in the country has been scaled back in the face of its uncertain future. Read the rest
In an interview with Democracy Now, Noam Chomsky talks about Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega's bullshit and what responsibility the United States bears for the current state of the South American nation.
If you're interested in reading a transcript of Chomsky's comments, you'll find it, here. Read the rest
In Michigan, a woman was arrested on charges that she bit off part of a man's ear, while she was fighting with him at a Chinese restaurant over food she'd ordered. The victim does not speak English as a first language, and had a hard time communicating. The woman who attacked him immediately lost custody of her child as a consequence. Read the rest
Artist Robert Longo has created Death Star II, a stunning sphere made with a bullet for each gun death in the US. It premiered at Art Basel this week (photos below). Read the rest
WKYC Channel 3 in Canton, Ohio, posted footage of police smashing a car window, dragging out the driver and setting a dog on him after he very politely refused to answer questions. The driver, Ronald D. Wagner II, appears to be a "sovereign citizen" type who refuses to screw the number plate on their car for arcane constitutional reasons. Their excuse? The car's registered owner had a concealed carry permit, so they were frightened for their lives: "Stop fighting the dog"
Listen to his screams and ask yourself if America is great again. Read the rest
I was getting on a plane in Toronto yesterday when I heard the news that a van had been intentionally driven into a crowd of people. By the time I landed a few hours later in Calgary, word was that 10 people lost their lives in the attack. Just under 20 were wounded. I assumed that if he was found by the authorities, the alleged driver of the van would be toast. He or she would have no chance to be tried by a jury of peers; no option to stand before a judge. There'd be no justice, save what a bullet, by the driver's own hand or that of a police office, could afford.
This morning when I woke, I was amazed to see that this was not the case. A single Toronto Police Service constable managed to capture a suspect alive in the murder of those ten unfortunate souls. Despite the fact that the suspect menaced the officer, his demanded to be killed, and constantly reached for a firearm – which turned out not to have been there – the suspect ended up in handcuffs instead of a body bag.
The Canadian Broadcast Corporation's got what little footage of the event there is, along with commentary on how a police service that was once known for its heavy-handed tactics identified its aggression as a problem and fought to change its ways. Through frequent deescalation courses, Toronto's Police Service is changing its officer's responses to violent situations, slowly, but with measurable success. Read the rest