Tim DeChristopher, whose act of civil disobedience stopped the illegal auction of oil and gas leases on thousands of acres of public land, was sentenced yesterday to two years in federal prison for fraudulently halting illegal government actions. This was his statement to the court.
Thank you for the opportunity to speak before the court. When I first met Mr. Manross, the sentencing officer who prepared the pre-sentence report, he explained that it was essentially his job to “get to know me.” He said he had to get to know who I really was and why I did what I did in order to decide what kind of sentence was appropriate. I was struck by the fact that he was the first person in this courthouse to call me by my first name, or even really look me in the eye. I appreciate this opportunity to speak openly to you for the first time. I’m not here asking for your mercy, but I am here asking that you know me.
By Rady Ananda
Governor Jan Brewer continues to ignore the international attention paid to Quartzsite, Arizona over $5 million in corruption charges, while the Chief of Police suspended nine of the city's 14 police officers with pay, ordering them not to leave their homes between the hours of 8 am and 5 pm.
All of the suspended officers blew the whistle on the chief, calling for an independent investigation into several serious charges, including false arrests and violating federal medical privacy laws.
In response to citizen demands for action, Brewer's office wrote:
"As you may know, the Governor does not have the authority to intervene in local law enforcement matters. Nor does this office have the authority to investigate misconduct by the police, county jails, federal prisons, and/or judges."
Well, she may not have the "authority," but she certainly has the power to pressure Chief of Police Jeff Gilbert into a leave of absence while he is being investigated.
By Rady Ananda
Dr. Jack Kevorkian passed away on June 3, at the age of 83. His “compassionate and common sense approach to ending human suffering is but one facet of his decades-long advocacy of the Ninth Amendment.”
So I wrote in 2009 after hearing him speak in a gymnasium packed with 2,500 people.
Best known for assisting 130 terminal patients to end their lives, and actually even killing one who was too weak to do so himself (for which he was imprisoned for eight years), Kevorkian was a fierce opponent of growing government intrusion into our daily lives, including the right to end it.
By Rady Ananda
Arthur Laurents’ story about love, racism and violence set in 1950s New York City took on a new twist under the direction of David Saint in Broadway Across America's Ft. Lauderdale production of West Side Story. By making subtle changes (from the 1961 film version starring Natalie Wood), Saint softens the criticism of US racism and salutes same-sex love.
When I first saw the film as a teen, the song “America” shocked me with its blunt lines, “Life is all right in America … if you are white in America.” Given our media-fostered culture of anti-Arab sentiment, I looked forward to hearing those words again. Instead, under Saint’s direction, the song mocked Puerto Rico. “Twelve in a room in America” became San Juan’s burden.
Renewing the Patriot Act: The Patriot Act will be renewed this week. What is the Patriot Act? The government claimed that it was a vital law necessary to protect us against future terrorist acts.
Who would oppose that? Shortly after 9/11 the act became law. There was public shock at the devastation caused by the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Surely, the government would make good use of the legislation. Failing to do so would violate the public trust since the act eliminated major constitutional protections of privacy, the right to a fair trial, and other civil liberties.
Before the act, you had an unqualified right to a "fair and speedy trial:"
By Rady Ananda
What France has done with its ban on the face veil is deem protection from a statistically remote threat (terrorists dressing in veils) superior to freedom of expression, freedom of religion, and freedom of dissent. The excuse of national security is not supported by the facts, so what can be the real reason for the ban?
The chairman of the Republican National Committee may have begun an irreversible descent into a future as a fear-bound paranoid victim of functional amnesia, possibly caused by a hysterical post-traumatic event such as the overwhelming victory of Democrats in the 2008 election and the nation's repudiation of Republican policies.
In a two-page vitriol-loaded letter dated "Friday morning"--he apparently was unable to remember the exact date--Robert M. (Mike) Duncan, RNC chairman, told Americans that the Democrats plan to "impose their radical leftist agenda on America," and that Republicans "must work vigilantly to guard our country's freedoms from the inevitable assault [by Democrats] they will face." He didn't mention that not one of Barack Obama's proposed cabinet members nor any of the members of the current Congress is a "radical leftist."
Until April 5, 2013 the 1984 American science fiction-horror film, directed by John Carpenter could be streamed or downloaded from a number of websites. They Live (Full movie) was in the playlist below created by Buddy Huggins.
These days you can’t swing a cat or open your mailbox without being hit by a flood of emails about the memorials, tributes, condolences, and donation sites for the victims of these tragedies that the conspiracy theorists say were created -- not right after the event, but right before the event.
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