Lawmakers Begin Bipartisan Push to Cut Off Police Access to Military-Style Gear
- The effort to end a program transferring surplus military equipment from the Pentagon to the police reflects a revived bipartisan concern about excessive use of force by law enforcement.
- WASHINGTON — Republicans and Democrats in Congress have begun a new push to shut down a Pentagon program that transfers military weaponry to local law enforcement departments, as bipartisan urgency builds to address the excessive use of force and the killings of unarmed black Americans by the police.
- Senator Brian Schatz, Democrat of Hawaii, who has long pressed to limit the transfer of military-grade equipment to police departments, announced that he would move to include an amendment in the must-pass annual defense policy bill to shut down the program entirely.
- In response to stark images of heavily armed police confronting unarmed protesters in armored vehicles in Ferguson, Mr. Obama placed limits on that program in 2015, restricting the transfer of weapons, including battering rams and explosives, from the Pentagon to local police.
People from ethnic minorities are up to 50% more likely to die from coronavirus than white people, UK report finds
- The analysis, conducted by government agency Public Health England (PHE), found that people of Bangladeshi heritage who tested positive for the virus were around twice as likely to die as their white British peers.
- People from other minority communities, including those of Chinese, Indian, Pakistani and Caribbean descent, also had a 10% to 50% higher risk of death when compared to white Britons, the report found.
- Commissioned by England's Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty in April, amid fears the coronavirus pandemic was "disproportionately" affecting black and ethnic minority communities, the analysis was due to be published at the end of May, according to PHE.
- Its publication came as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet warned that Covid-19 had exposed inequalities within society and was having a major disproportionate impact on racial and ethnic minorities, including people of African descent.
Game companies delay events, tweet #BlackLivesMatter amid police brutality protests
- Further ReadingPS5 game reveal event has been delayed: “Not a time for celebration” [Updated]Game makers and gaming brands including PlayStation, Xbox, Riot Games, Naughty Dog, Warner Bros., Insomniac Games, Harmonix, and Bethesda Softworks are among those that have issued tweets using the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag and offering largely vague and non-specific support for people of color.
- The International Game Developers Association issued a statement Monday highlighting protests that "stem from frustration over failure in the United States to reform practices and policies that hurt black communities there...
- The IGDA's Blacks in Gaming Special Interest Group plans to host a livestreamed panel "to discuss the current situation, concerns of the black game development community, and the ways to support progress and combat prejudice." The panel will be livestreamed on the organization's Twitch channel on Thursday, June 4 and 2pm EST.
How Atlanta's mayor became the face and voice of her party
- Bottoms, the mayor of Atlanta, has emerged more so than any other Democratic politician -- including the party's presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden -- as the sort of leader the party (and the country) needs amid ongoing protests and violence across the country following the murder of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, at the hands of Minneapolis police last week.
- Even before the last five days, Bottoms was widely regarded as a potential vice presidential pick for Biden -- a longtime surrogate and supporter of the former vice president's 2020 campaign, not to mention the mayor of a major southern city in an emerging swing state.
- And even if Biden picks someone other than Bottoms as his VP, her words and actions over these past days have put her in an entirely new place in terms of the national Democratic Party.
1918 + 1929 + 1968 = 2020
- The nation's collective unwillingness to confront the violent history of American race relations, despite the urgent appeals of some, continues to impede meaningful progress between white America and people of color.
- Because millions repeatedly tell themselves their country has made great strides on the race front, they have failed to grapple with and effectively address the persistence of black poverty, of inferior health care for African Americans, of discrimination in employment, and of profound inequity in the criminal justice system.
- This persistent determination to turn a blind eye to the American past reveals a country that lacks the stomach -- to say nothing of the heart and the conscience -- to work in a serious way to address generations of racial persecution.
Blackout Tuesday posts hide info with Black Lives Matter, BLM hashtags - Insider
- A social media movement encouraging people to post plain black squares on Instagram in an effort to elevate Black voices on the platform has unintentionally hidden those voices, as many people are including Black Lives Matter hashtags in their posts.
- The #BLM and #BlackLivesMatter hashtag pages on Instagram have been used to disseminate information and resources about the nationwide police brutality protests in the wake of George Floyd's death.
- Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez urged her Instagram followers not to use the BLM and Black Lives Matter hashtags with Blackout Tuesday posts.
- If you must post a blackout pic use the hashtags #blackouttuesday, #theshowmustbepaused, etc which were originally made by Black women organizers in the music industry.
- Other actions taken by some on social media, like sharing the video of George Floyd being pinned down by Minneapolis cops before he died in police custody, have been widely criticized for doing more harm than good.
Tech companies mark Blackout Tuesday
- Over the weekend, music industry execs Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang called on fellow industry members to protest police violence against black people by pausing operations for the day.
- The pair created the site and hashtag #theshowmustbepaused, which spread quickly throughout social media as people looked for a way to offer solidarity with nationwide and international protests.
- The call has transformed in a larger movement, among individuals and companies seeking to respond to the killing of George Floyd and other black Americans at the hands of police.
- Perhaps the most visible manifestation of the movement are the black squares that have begun to populate Instagram, Facebook and other social media sites.
- Music-related tech companies have begun to embrace the movement, as well, days after many penned open letters about Lloyd’s death and subsequent protests.
Premier League players urged to take a knee in protest at George Floyd's death
- As pictures of the Liverpool players' gesture went viral on social media the head of Kick It Out, a leading UK organization that works to tackle discrimination in professional and grassroots football, urged every Premier League player to take a knee once the season restarts later this month.
- While Liverpool's squad took a knee during training on Monday, Manchester United stars Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford also posted messages of solidarity on social media.
- Bhandari's comments came on the same day that the German Football Federation (DFB) announced it was investigating protests made by Jadon Sancho, Achraf Hakimi, Weston McKennie and Marcus Thuram during Bundesliga matches over the weekend, a decision for which the federation has drawn criticism.
- Over the weekend, Borussia Dortmund's Sancho received a yellow card for lifting up his shirt to reveal the message "Justice for George Floyd" written underneath.
Top Air Force enlistee posts passionate plea for justice
- Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died Monday in Minneapolis police custody after video showed him pleading for air as an officer knelt on his neck.
- Floyd's death has sparked protests and unrest across the nation as demonstrators demand police reform and justice served to Floyd's arresting officers.
- Wright said Monday that what happened to Floyd and occurs "all too often in this country to Black men who are subjected to police brutality that ends in death" could happen to him or any black airman -- regardless of rank.
- Wright said he struggles with the "Air Force's own demons" of racial disparities in military justice and discipline and the "clear lack" of diversity in leadership.
- He also said they are working to improve the diversity of the force, particularly in its senior officer ranks.
- Wright also made an impassioned plea to his fellow servicemen to take action.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: 'Rioting is the voices of people who have no voice'
- Demonstrators filled streets across the country to protest police brutality and the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died at the hands of a police officer in Minneapolis.
- Although Abdul-Jabbar says that the majority of the police force are not a problem, "something has to change" with how African Americans are treated by a minority of law enforcement officers.
- As well as critiquing President Trump, Popovich has never been shy about speaking about racism or police brutality.
- While Popovich called the protests "necessary," their organization has frustrated the 71-year-old coach.