amckiereads

(with less books) [trigger warnings for sexual assault / rape / racism apply to many posts here]

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Michael Brown's mom laid flowers where he was shot—and police crushed them

Soon, police vehicles reappeared, including from the St. Louis County Police Department, which had taken control of the investigation. Several officers emerged with dogs. What happened next, according to several sources, was emblematic of what has inflamed the city of Ferguson, Missouri, ever since the unarmed 18-year-old was gunned down: An officer on the street let the dog he was controlling urinate on the memorial site.”

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You don’t have to have an armored vehicle to be a jerk and a danger to the public. If you have the attitude that you are owed deference and instant obedience by the people around you, and that you are justified in using violence against them if they don’t comply, we already have a problem. That’s especially true if official institutions back you up, which they do.
If you really think that everybody else should “just do what I tell you,” you’re wearing the wrong uniform in the wrong country. And if you really can’t function with some give and take—a few nasty names, a little argument—of the sort that people in all sorts of jobs put up with every damned day, do us all a favor: quit.
The law enforcement problem in this country goes well beyond boys with toys. It’s much deeper, and needs to be torn out by the roots.
http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/19/police-officer-if-you-dont-want-to-get-s

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Fatal Hypothesis: How Belief in a Just World is Killing Us

For so many ordinary people, who are not inured to the folkways and norms of activism, the idea that the world is fundamentally unjust frightens them. It is a night terror that they violently barricade against in their minds, hoping that if they chant “everything happens for a reason” enough all the clamour outside will go away or at least be silenced into sensible white noise. This leads, also, to clinging to the prejudicial ‘common sense’ that makes such a belief credible, whether it’s believing that the Third World brought poverty upon itself, that the poor only need to “work harder,” that those on food stamps buy too much king crab, that women bring our rapes and sexual assaults upon ourselves, that transgender women’s “deception” of cis men is an invitation to violent reprisal, or that people with various mental health struggles simply need to “try harder” to not “be crazy.” The list could go on.”

#mustread

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xoJane

I don’t know how to tell people that I’d rather be let down by white society than be let down by white individuals.”

We must must MUST always be better at listening, at not dismissing, at taking others seriously. It’s the only way to truly be allies and friends. 

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Why don’t we hear about women victims of state violence?

"The truth is that, in the predominantly male-led civil rights organizations who lead efforts to respond to police brutality, in the male-dominated media that covers them, and in the hearts and minds of many people in this country, women who are of color, who are sex workers, undocumented immigrants, transgender (or, god forbid, more than one of those at once) are rarely candidates for “innocence,” and are often blamed for their own deaths, forgotten, or hardly counted at all. Women of color who are targeted by the police, and black women in particular, are seen as so disposable, so far from being moral actors, that their lives and deaths are just passed over by the mainstream — their victimization and murder just another facet of the American landscape. Aiyana Jones’ case is the last time that I can remember a black girl’s murder by the police gaining significant national attention; she was seven years old.”