Black Agenda Report for July 31, 2013: Obscene 14 Blacks in Congress, Obama & Holder Argue to Extend Mass Incarceration

1 August 2013 — Black Agenda Report

This week in Black Agenda Report

Obama Administration Seeks to Keep Tens of Thousands Imprisoned Under Unfair Crack VS Powder Cocaine Penalities

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Our black political class wants to feed us outrage over the case of Trayvon Martin. But for 3 years the black press, advocacy organizations and the black political class have ignored the Obama administration’s attempt to keep as many unjustly sentenced crack defendants in jail under old and unjust laws as long as possible. Why are they ignoring this, and more importantly, why are we?

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by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

If only half of the “Obscene 14” Black members of Congress had voted against NSA telephone spying, “the Bush-Obama surveillance regime would have been dealt its first serious setback in more than a decade of fascism-in-the-making.” Their treachery is deadly. “African Americans, more than any other U.S. constituency, have an existential interest in ending the Surveillance State.”

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A Black Agenda Radio Commentary by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Bradley Manning is a US political prisoner, not the first or the last. The Obama administration is just as craven, vicious, and fearful of the truth and the American people as any of its predecessors. As the Obama administration has assumed the tradition of making new political prisoners we must expand the tradition of corresponding with, supporting and educating our communities, and working toward amnesty for all US political prisoners.

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by BAR editor and senior columnist Margaret Kimberley

The Obama administration is fighting a federal court ruling that would free the remainder of the mostly Black prison inmates convicted under now-defunct, viciously racially disparate crack cocaine laws. The First Black President and his Black attorney general are determined to keep “5,000 people in jail who have no reason to be there.”

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A Black Agenda Radio commentary by BAR executive editor Glen Ford

President Obama, like his Republican colleagues, says the word “jobs” when he really means “corporate tax cuts.” He lectured in the same Corp-Speak in Chattanooga, where he told low-wage workers how wonderful their bosses are, and what economic miracles could be accomplished by lavishing corporations with “incentives” to do the right thing.

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by Rob Hager

The Sanford vigilante was certainly guilty of the crime of “aggravated stalking, a felony in the third degree,” as defined by Florida law. Having committed the predicate crime of stalking, Zimmerman was responsible for the outcome of his actions. The trial jury was “led astray by being asked to focus on the end rather than the beginning of the fatal encounter.”

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by Mark P. Fancher

The U.S. Military Command in Africa – AFRICOM – is a highly sophisticated force for domination of the continent. AFRICOM is adept at “manipulating news and commentary on the Internet, especially social media,” portraying itself as an ally in “the fight for Africa’s liberation from the grip of terrorism.” Don’t believe the hype.

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by Ezili Dantò

The United States needs a “bottom” racial caste – African Americans – but allows some groups to “pass” as white over time. “Zimmerman used the confusion to alternatively identify himself as Hispanic and white, depending on who his family wanted to manipulate.” He chose not to publicly identify as Hispanic “in order to emphasize self-defense.”

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by Raymond Nat Turner

Jury Has Spoken Stout and

Nation Of Laws Lager were trotted

Out like “8 Ball,” as Ole English 800’s

Known in the ‘hood.”

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Listen to Black Agenda Radio on the Progressive Radio Network, with Glen Ford and Nellie Bailey – Week of 7/29/13

Trayvon Protests Should Lead to Movement Against Racial Surveillance

If there is to be a mass movement against racial profiling, “we’ve got to talk about the War on Drugs and decriminalization and legalization; we’ve got to talk about the surveillance state, where the government at the local and the national level profiles you every day of your life,” said South Carolina activist and author Kevin Alexander Gray. “We’ve got to talk about the idea that the only people that are being required to show something to prove that they are not guilty of something are people of color in this country – and we’ve got to figure out a way to fight back.” Gray is author of The Fundamentals of Black Politics.

Obama Approval Rating Drops Among Blacks

A recent NBC News-Wall Street Journal poll shows Black approval of President Obama dipped to 78 percent following George Zimmerman’s murder acquittal. “It’s a perceptual shift, a big-time shift in how Black people are perceiving Obama when it comes to being responsive to the needs of our community,” said Dr. Johnny Williams, professor of sociology at Trinity College, in Hartford, Connecticut. The president’s high praise for New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly, who runs the nation’s biggest stop-and-frisk operation, as a potential new chief of Homeland Security “speaks to where Obama is, morally,” said Williams. “How are you going to put somebody who, basically, does the same thing that George Zimmerman did to Trayvon Martin, in charge of Homeland Security?”

White Reaction to Zimmerman Verdict Disturbing

An ABC News-Washington Post poll showing two-thirds of whites think Trayvon Martin’s killing was justifiable, is a measure of the “separateness in perspective that reflects very real, savage, and profound, literal segregation” of the races in America, said historian and activist Paul Street. “That’s a lot more than just the segment of the white population that’s Republican or Tea Party,” said Street, author of The Empire’s New Clothes: Barack Obama and the Real World of Power. “There’s a lot of Democrats in there, and that probably includes a whole bunch of ‘liberals.’ This isn’t just about cracker whites in the South.”

NSA Vote Shows Hope in Face of Fascist Trends

The narrow defeat of a U.S. House bill to halt wholesale NSA spying on Americans’ telephone calls was “a tactical loss but a strategic victory” for the rule of law, said Shahid Buttar, executive director of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. He warned of the rise of “fascist principles” in the U.S., including “collusion between the corporate private sector and the government sector to abuse fundamental rights,” and “xenophobia and militarism…vilifying the Other, within our country, justifying international belligerence towards other countries.”

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