The Clowns in Power: How US Forces are Raging War Against Activists, Education, and People of Color

Armed American soldiers dressed up in military uniform, no identification, unidentifiable vehicles, targeting civilians and kidnapping them into vans where they become disappeared with no explanation.  Sound like a scenario out of a dictatorship?  This is America.  More specifically, this is Portland,Oregon this last week where Trump’s Secret Police have been unleashed to capture and disappear protesters over the past few days–protestors who have risen up to speak out against rampant racism in this country.

So, where do they go?

One captured protestor reported that upon being placed in one of these unidentified vans, his eyes were covered and he was not read his Miranda rights till he was detained in a federal courthouse.  However, upon asking for a lawyer, he was released.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler gave NO authority for the Federal Government to unleash the Secret Police to snatch up protesters, and on Friday gave Trump this message, “Keep your troops in your own buildings, or have them leave our city.”  Not only is the kidnapping of people by Trump’s Secret Police unconstitutional, but it is actually creating a divide between states and the Federal Government.  If Trump and his cronies are trying to treat America like their own backwards-authoritarian playground, why are these clowns still in office?

Trump’s Administration is not only terrorizing citizens and ruthlessly trying to bypass states, it is also attacking higher education through the Dept. of Homeland Security’s ICE agency.

ICE passed an action on July 6th “requiring all [foreign] students on F-1 visas whose university curricula are entirely online to depart the country, and barring any such students currently outside the United States from entering or reentering the United States” (Civil Action No. 1:20-cv-11283).

Students on F-1 visas would only be allowed to remain in the US if their universities offered  them IN-PERSON classes during a GLOBAL PANDEMIC.

In response to this Harvard and MIT have sued the United States Dept. of Homeland Security; ICE, Harvard President issuing a letter to the Harvard Community stating:

“The order came down without notice—its cruelty surpassed only by its recklessness. It appears that it was designed purposefully to place pressure on colleges and universities to open their on-campus classrooms for in-person instruction this fall, without regard to concerns for the health and safety of students, instructors, and others.”

AND LAST, BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST:

If you haven’t heard already, ICE is offering a “Citizens Academy” where (according to them) citizens will be given scenario-based training in “defensive tactics, firearms familiarization, and targeted arrests”.  According to ICE’s government website, civilian participants will “become familiar with how and why ICE carries out its mission. Modeled after other law enforcement academies, including ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), FBI, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and local police departments, ERO plans to directly engage and educate the public through the academy”.

The “Academy” starts Sept.15th in Chicago.   ICE claims that this would be just to inform the public on what ICE does, and not necessarily train citizens to conduct arrest.  Then WHY ARE PEOPLE RECEIVING FIREARMS TRAINING IN THIS PROGRAM AND GOING THROUGH SCENARIO-BASED TRAINING?

This is basically a pathway to give aggressive racist citizens authority to practice the disgustingly glorified act of profiling people of color, as well as possibly detaining them without a badge–which could lead to more acts of violence! Luckily, on July 15th a bill was passed for the 2021 fiscal year denying federal funding for that “academy”.

All of this is unbelievably unconstitutional and a foreshadowing of what lies ahead if we do not work now to get these destructive idiots out of power.  We need to build up our communities and support one another during this time, because while the US Gov is basically eating itself, Our People will remain.

 

To Read the Suit Filed by Harvard and MIT, use link below:

https://www.harvard.edu/sites/default/files/content/sevp_filing.pdf

On This Day in Indigenous History:

1784: Chief El Mocho of the Native Tribe Tonkawa (in Texas), signs a peace treaty with the Spanish, but actually organizes the indigenous people in the area to stage an attack on the Spanish.  Upon hearing this information, the Spanish shoot and Kill El Mocho in the plaza of Presidio-La Bahia, Texas.

On This Day In Chicano History:

2014: Protesters march to the Department of Homeland Security in El Paso, Texas demanding humane treatment for Mexican migrants at the border after Obama requests for 3.7 billion dollars to (according to the Las Vegas Sun) “deal” with Mexican children and families.  Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson  states,  “Our message to those who come illegally is we will send you back”, sparking outrage among Chicano activists and communities.

On This Day In Indigenous History:

2020: Today marks the first day after Supreme Court Rules that Native American Tribal jurisdiction extends over nearly half of Oklahoma.

What this means: Because the Oklahoma tribes will have jurisdiction over these areas, people who commit crimes in these areas will be tried in Tribal and Federal Courts.  This is important because when crimes involving Native American people go to State courts, they often are ignored, or Native people are treated unfairly in the judicial system.  Rapes of Natives go largely unpunished, making this a win for indigenous peoples, especially in the fight for the protection of Native girls and women.

What this does not mean: The Oklahoma tribes do not technically have all of this land “back”.  They cannot kick out people/entities who have bought, or been allowed land in the jurisdiction of the reservation.

About the Urgency for Change and Justice

Today, and everyday, is an important time to address the issues of historical oppression through classism and racism.  American capitalism has created major disparities between the rich and the poor; the haves and the have-nots; the people of color and the people of privilege—arguably, capitalism has created classism, and classism has helped create the structure of racism.  We are living in a time of class/racial disparities.  It is time, not just to call-out these disparities but to thoroughly examine them, to understand them, to challenge them, and to come together to dismantle them.  

Equity, fairness, and justice are the demands for the people of today.

Unfortunately, American capitalism would have people believe that we all live in a just society, that our income/education/treatment is based solely on merit…that if we just try hard enough and pull up ourselves by our boot-straps, we will become wealthy, educated and apart of the higher social class.  This is a lie meant to keep the lower classes docile citizens of a corrupt system that is thriving in the US today—a system working for the higher strata of society.  This is a lie as evidenced by the fact that in poor communities adult education is low, schools are underfunded in poor communities, housing is sub-par at best in communities of color, health disparities have plagued whole families who exist in poverty, and there is little to no opportunities for families of color, families of low socio-economic status, to mobilize upwards.

The system of American capitalism will ensure that economic capital and educational capital will stay in the hands of the wealthy, the elite, the 1% and the upper middle-middle class.  This results in the working class not having access to resources of politics, education, legislation and even healthcare.  This is the time, as has always been the time, to begin conversations, to take action, and to build communities that will no longer be victims of this unjust system, but empowered peoples of mobilization for justice and equitable treatment.

The idea should not be to focus on what we as members of our communities don’t have, but what we do have.

We have hopes for our peoples futures, we have goals, we have the ability to band together and raise our voices as a unified voice, and in that we have power.  We can mobilize by fighting for the best education of our youth, by creating unions that demand labor equality, by empowering our communities of color…revolutions start through even simple means, even by coming home and enjoying time with your family, even by having a conversation about how to best support your community, even by educating yourself about historical injustice.

For people of color, people of marginalized classes, there is power in knowledge and power in numbers.  Equity, fairness, and justice is on the horizon when we begin to collectively mobilize for change.

 

The Library for the nationalbrownberets.org is currently under construction.

For facts that support this message refer to:

https://www.centerforhealthjournalism.org/2014/08/27/long-view-suggests-kids-end-where-they-start

“Social Justice, Multicultural Counseling, and Practice: Beyond a Conventional Approach ed.2” by Heesoon Jun.  Published 2018 by Springer International Publishing AG.

SAFER SCHOOL SUPPLIES: SHOPPING GUIDE (PIRG Report)

As reported by the United States Public Interest Group:

Their three takeaways are:

1) Some of these school products contain toxic chemicals that have been recalled. The government mandates that products for children should have less than 100 ppm of lead. If your family owns a water bottle described in this Guide that has been recalled for having above 100 ppm, immediately stop using the water bottle and return it to the store.

2) Some of these school products contact toxics that, while not banned by the federal government, could possibly pose a risk to children. It is legal to have asbestos in crayons. However, scientists and government agencies point out that it is unnecessary to expose children to asbestos. Manufacturers selling asbestos-containing crayons should voluntarily recall the crayons and reformulate the ingredients. Similarly, it is legal to have phthalates in some back to school products, but scientists recommend that children not be exposed to high levels of phthalates.

3) Given that it is often legal to sell products containing these toxic substances, parents can do several things. First, look for the Art and Creative Materials Institute (ACMI) “AP” label, letting consumers know that the product is non-toxic. If there is no AP label, look for the manufacturer’s “children’s product certificate” on the product, which assures parents that the product has been tested in a third-party laboratory under government specifications. If neither of those labels is on the product, parents can reach out to the manufacturers and ask that they start using AP certification, or that they meet the requirements needed for a children’s product certificate.

We have the following recommendations:

* Dollar Tree and Playskool should recall the asbestos-tainted crayons and remove them from store shelves. They should also contact customers to warn them about the crayons.

* Dollar Tree and Jot should recall the 3-ring binder that contained high levels of phthalates and remove them from store shelves. They should also contact customers to warn them about the binders.

* The Board Dudes and Amazon should recall their dry-erase markers that contain benzene and remove them from store shelves.

* Policymakers should maintain the CPSC’s funding and authorities to protect the public and mandate the CPSC to regularly test more children’s products for toxic chemicals.

* Parents and teachers should look for the AP label posted on items by the Art & Creative Materials Institute (“ACMI”). For items not certified by the ACMI, parents should look for a manufacturer’s label certifying that the product meets CPSC guidelines for children.

* Parents should demand that manufacturers without a label start carrying a label, and that the products meet the safety guidelines.

On this day, in Chicano History

1972: San Antonio:
A state report reveals that nearly half of the people in the lower Rio Grande Valley are living in poverty, that most are Chicanos, and that 70% of those in poverty are employed.