We Resist: Day 413

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One of the difficulties in resisting the Trump administration, the Republican Congressional majority, and Republican state legislatures (plus the occasional non-Republican who obliges us to resist their nonsense, too, like we don't have enough to worry about) is keeping on top of the sheer number of horrors, indignities, and normalization of the aggressively abnormal that they unleash every single day.

So here is a daily thread for all of us to share all the things that are going on, thus crowdsourcing a daily compendium of the onslaught of conservative erosion of our rights and our very democracy.

Stay engaged. Stay vigilant. Resist.

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Earlier today by me: Are You F#@king Kidding Me? and Hope Hicks Casually Testified Her Email Was Hacked. And late yesterday ICYMI: Breaking: Trump Asked Witnesses in Russia Probe to Disclose What They Discussed with Investigators.

Here are some more things in the news today...

Sari Horwitz and Devlin Barrett at the Washington Post: Mueller Gathers Evidence That 2017 Seychelles Meeting Was Effort to Establish Back Channel to Kremlin.

Um, okay.

If that sounds familiar, well, that's because we've known this information for almost a year. This is, of course, hardly the first time that things we've known for a very long time are reported as if they're news. The only "news," such as it is, is that Special Counsel Bob Mueller is collecting evidence (only now?!) of a year-old report long confirmed by officials from at least three different governments.

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[Content Note: Nativism; authoritarianism] I have spent the better part of a year warning that the Trump administration was signalling their intent to come after documented immigrants.

In January, they did the previously unthinkable: Revoked a naturalized citizen's citizenship, reverting him to a lawful permanent resident and potentially making him subject to deportation.

In February, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest raised "grave concerns" that ICE was targeting immigrants for their "immigration advocacy — a practice she associated with America's worst enemies."

Also last month, the Supreme Court ruled "that immigrants, even those with permanent legal status and asylum seekers, do not have the right to periodic bond hearings," i.e. can be indefinitely detained.

I have said before and will keep saying: This administration's (mis)treatment of undocumented immigrants is their canary in the coalmine. Their targeting is intolerable on its face, but understand that whatever they are doing to undocumented immigrants, they will target others in the same way eventually. We must resist their nativist strategies not only because they are cruel and indecent and unjust, but also because if we fail to resist them, they will proliferate.

That is all backdrop to this story by Regina Mahone at Rewire: Reproductive Justice Activist Detained 'in Retaliation' for Protesting.
Reproductive justice activist Alejandra Pablos has been detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in what immigrant rights advocates are calling an act of "retaliation" for protesting in Virginia earlier this year.

Pablos works for the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) and is a member of We Testify, an abortion storytelling leadership program of the National Network of Abortion Funds. She was put in deportation proceedings, losing her legal permanent resident status more than two years ago, following a drug-related arrest.

Elsewhere, other activists have called attention to apparent retaliation against protesters, most notably in Washington state. "Alejandra isn't the only one. Detainment is also evidence of ICE's pattern of singling out immigrant leaders for being outspoken and fearless community mobilizers. In recent months, ICE detained prominent immigrant activist Maru Mora-Villalpando for her 'extensive involvement with anti-ICE protests and Latino advocacy programs.' Among other immigration activists, ICE has also detained Ravi Ragbir, executive director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City, and Eliseo Jurado, husband of a Peruvian woman taking sanctuary at a Colorado church," NLIRH said in a statement to Rewire.News after publication.

The immigrant rights organization Mijente noted in a petition on Wednesday, the same day that Pablos was taken into custody, that she had led "chants [in early January] at a peaceful protest in Virginia outside of the Department of Homeland Security," where local agents took her into custody. "It appears that after the protest in Virginia, one of the ICE agents called her deportation officer in Tucson, Arizona, and sought to get her detained in retaliation for her protest."
This is utterly unacceptable. The federal government is using the power of law enforcement to chill dissent. It is intolerable that the Trump administration is targeting and silencing undocumented immigrants in this way, and it is intolerable that they will absolutely expand their use of intimidation tactics if we don't loudly resist their attacks on immigrants and refugees.

Make noise. Amplify what is happening. Raise awareness. And make your calls to your senators and representatives to demand that they take legislative action to stop ICE from intimidating and punishing undocumented immigrants and refugees for protesting.

Those of us who can still safely resist must.

The situation is getting critical, as the federal government continues to intervene even where local and state governments are resisting their nativist agenda. Alfonso Serrano at Colorlines: Department of Justice Sues California for Immigrant Sanctuary Policies. "In its most forceful move yet against sanctuary jurisdictions, the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Tuesday (March 6) sued California and the state's governor and attorney general for state laws that grant protections to immigrants with undocumented status. It's the latest volley in a mounting dispute between the Trump administration and states that limit cooperation on immigration enforcement with federal authorities." Goddammit.

Make all the noise.

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Also on the subject of trade:

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Carol Rosenberg at the Miami Herald: Now We Know Why Defense Attorneys Quit the USS Cole Case: They Found a Microphone. "Lawyers for the alleged USS Cole bombing mastermind quit the capital case after discovering a microphone in their special client meeting room and were denied the opportunity to either talk about or investigate it, the Miami Herald has learned. The narrative, contained in a 15-page prosecution filing obtained by the Herald, is the first authoritative description of the episode that caused three civilian defense attorneys to resign from the death-penalty case of Abd al Rahim al Nashiri on ethical grounds: Rick Kammen, a seasoned death-penalty defender, and Rosa Eliades and Mary Spears. In fact, the prosecution says the listening device that lawyers discovered in an early August inspection of their special meeting room was a legacy of past interrogations — and, across 50 days of ostensibly confidential attorney-client meetings, was never turned on." Holy shit.

Brian Stelter at CNN: Sinclair's New Media-Bashing Promos Rankle Local Anchors. "The instructions to local stations say that the promos 'should play using news time, not commercial time.' ...'Please produce the attached scripts exactly as they are written,' the instructions say. ...The promos begin with one or two anchors introducing themselves and saying 'I'm [we are] extremely proud of the quality, balanced journalism that [proper news brand name of local station] produces. But I'm [we are] concerned about the troubling trend of irresponsible, one sided news stories plaguing our country.' Then the media bashing begins. 'The sharing of biased and false news has become all too common on social media,' the script says. 'More alarming, national media outlets are publishing these same fake stories without checking facts first. Unfortunately, some members of the national media are using their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control 'exactly what people think' ...This is extremely dangerous to our democracy.'" OMFG. Sinclair is going to put the final nail in the coffin of U.S. TV news media.

[CN: Racism; police brutality] Tanasia Kenney at the Atlanta Black Star: 'I Can't Breathe!' Police Beating of Black North Carolina Man Draws Outrage. "Authorities are investigating police body camera footage from August that shows two white officers beating, then Tasering a Black man accused of jaywalking in Asheville, N.C. The footage, obtained by the Citizen Times, shows Officer Chris Hickman beating local man Johnnie Jermaine Rush with several blows to the head while another officer held him down. Rush was also shocked twice with a stun gun, saying several times that he couldn't breathe as officers struggled to restrain him."

Again, this started with a municipal violation. Over-policing by way of municipal violations is a dynamic from which the vast majority of white USians are insulated, because white supremacy, racial privilege, and segregation explicitly act in service to insulate us from precisely this reality: The brutal policing of black USians for municipal violations, using minor infractions to generate fines and police records that have lasting impact on black lives and communities. I will again recommend [CN: video autoplays at link] this segment by John Oliver on municipal violations.

I am very angry that Rush was assaulted by the police, and I am very glad he survived the encounter.

[CN: Environmental racism] Ayana Byrd at Colorlines: EPA Rules That Landfill in Majority Black Alabama Town is Not a Health Hazard. "The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined there is “insufficient evidence” to rule in favor of residents of an overwhelmingly Black town who filed a civil rights case in response to what they say are dangerous health risks associated with their local landfill. Arrowhead Landfill is located in Uniontown, Alabama. It holds waste from 33 states and is twice the size of New York City's 843-acre Central Park. ...For the past eight years, it has also held 4 million tons of coal ash, relocated from a coal plant 330 miles away in Kingston, Tennessee. Uniontown's population, which is 90 percent Black with half of the residents living below the poverty line, has suffered a number of illnesses since the coal ash arrived." Fucking hell.

[CN: Homophobia; slut-shaming] Andy Towle at Towleroad: NFL Prospect Derrius Guice Says Team Asked If He Is Gay in NFL Combine Interview. "Former LSU running back Derrius Guice said he was asked if he is gay during an interview at this week's NFL Combine. Guice made the disclosure during an interview with SiriusXM's NFL show Late Hits, according to USA Today: ''It was pretty crazy,' Guice said in an interview on the SiriusXM NFL show Late Hits. 'Some people are really trying to get in your head and test your reaction. …I go in one room, and a team will ask me do I like men, just to see my reaction. I go in another room, they'll try to bring up one of my family members or something and tell me, 'Hey, I heard your mom sells herself. How do you feel about that?''' ...The NFL is looking into Guice's claim, according to spokesperson Brian McCarthy."

[CN: Sexual assault] Staff at the Daily Beast: NBA Probing Mark Cuban After New Witness Emerges on Sex-Assault Report. "The NBA will be looking into Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban's 2011 sexual-assault investigation, specifically 'reviewing the allegations...and the decision by prosecutors not to pursue the case,' after a man at the bar that night came forward to support the unnamed woman's claims of assault. Christopher White, a security worker, told The Oregonian he witnessed the woman's reaction after Cuban reportedly shoved his hand down her jeans and touched her inappropriately. 'She jumped away like she was not happy with him,' White said. 'That's when the energy in the room kind of exploded.'"

[CN: Sexual assault] Staff and Agencies at the Guardian: NYPD on Verge of Arrest in Harvey Weinstein Rape Investigation. "The New York police department is ready to make an arrest in the sexual assault case against Harvey Weinstein. New York City's chief of detectives, Robert Boyce, said on 7 March that police have gathered considerable evidence in the investigation, but it is up to the district attorney to decide whether, and when, the disgraced film producer gets indicted. 'It's his case right now,' Boyce said of Manhattan district attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. 'I would ask you to ask him.' However, the Daily Beast quoted a police official with direct knowledge of the case as saying: 'We're ready to go with an arrest.' The district attorney's office had no comment."

What have you been reading that we need to resist today?

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