Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! explores fourth-generation Black farmer John Boyd’s 30-years-in-the-making victory of $5 billion COVID relief for Black farmers as part of the American Rescue Plan. Also addressed is the egregious historical USDA racial discrimination in lending, resulting in the crushing decline of Black farming with 90 percent of Black farmers’ land lost over the past century.
The powerful judgement-based, experience-barrren Parole Board is a kingpin of the prison industrial complex system and a blatant indictment against the lack of humanity as incarcerated humans with eligibility for parole dates specified at sentencing are arbitrarily and diabolically denied time and again without just cause, inflicting pain, suffering and damage to prisoners, their families, communities and society at large.
Police officers in Ferguson, whose sole duty is to protect and serve, are seen using dogs, tear gas and now military grade weapons to suppress any peaceful protest and public outcry. This really hits home to those who can relate to being targets of police brutality, where in essence police departments have become judge, jury and executioner, getting away with murder time and time again.
“The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons,” wrote Dostoyevsky. If what he says is true – and I believe it is – then America, which boasts the largest prison population in the world, is perhaps the most uncivilized country there is. Who better to speak to the reality of prison life than someone who is living the experience?
In a scathing report, China condemned America’s treatment of its Afro-descendants and other minorities and cited America’s numerous human rights violations. China charges that human rights reports issued by the U.S. are full of distortions and accusations about the human rights situation in China and elsewhere.
Among the very few people celebrating our country’s fiscal crisis are criminal justice reformers. Bill Piper of Drug Policy Alliance says, “Next year is probably an unprecedented opportunity to defund the federal drug war.” But colorblind cost-benefit approaches leave intact the racial attitudes, stereotypes and anxieties that gave rise to the system in the first place.
This October will mark the 43rd anniversary of the founding of the Black Panther Party. To celebrate this milestone, the It’s About Time Committee and The Commemorator are presenting a two-day Book Fair and Teach-In at the Laney College Student Center on Friday, Oct. 23, 12-3 p.m., and Saturday, Oct. 24, 11 a.m. until 4 p.m., as just one of many scheduled October events.