We Resist: Day 504

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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: This Is What the Threat of Gun Violence in Schools Looks Like and Trump Doesn't Mention Puerto Rican Hurricane Victims at FEMA Hurricane Preparedness Event.

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

Eliana Johnson at Politico: Trump and Bolton Spurn Top-Level North Korea Planning. "National Security Adviser John Bolton has yet to convene a Cabinet-level meeting to discuss [Donald] Trump's upcoming summit with North Korea next week, a striking break from past practice that suggests the Trump White House is largely improvising its approach to the unprecedented nuclear talks. For decades, top presidential advisers have used a methodical process to hash out national security issues before offering the president a menu of options for key decisions. But since Trump agreed on a whim to meet with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un on March 8, the White House's summit planning has been unstructured, according to a half-dozen administration officials. Trump himself has driven the preparation almost exclusively on his own, consulting little with his national security team outside of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo."

On the one hand, yes, there has been little formal, traditional, strategic planning. On the other, Rudy Giuliani didn't publicly say on a foreign trip that, following Trump's (rescinded) cancellation, Kim "got back on his hands and knees and begged for it, which is exactly the position you want to put him in" without Donald Trump knowing about it.

Meanwhile, a U.S. official Trump leaks that he might invite Kim to Mar-a-Lago if they get along, or maybe they'll play a round of golf together. Flattering cop; threatening cop.

There's a strategy at work. It just isn't one that centers effective diplomacy or peace.

And in other foreign policy goings-on...

Lily Kuo at the Guardian: 'Sonic Attack' Fears as More U.S. Diplomats Fall Ill in China. "U.S. State Department officials said on Wednesday it had sent 'a number of individuals' from its consulate in Guangzhou back to the U.S. for 'further evaluation and a comprehensive assessment of their symptoms.' Last month, a consulate worker in Guangzhou was found to have suffered a mild traumatic brain injury after reporting 'abnormal sensations of sound and pressure' from late 2017 through to April 2018. The department sent a team to Guangzhou in late May to examine other US staff and their families, and investigate possible links between their symptoms and those of U.S. diplomats in Cuba last year, an incident that prompted Washington to pull its staff from the country and expel Cuban diplomats from the U.S." Stranger and stranger!

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[Content Note: Nativism; white supremacy; violence. Covers entire section.]

Erik Larson at Bloomberg: Judge Calls Trump's Border Separations of Children 'Brutal'.
The Trump administration failed to kill a legal challenge to its practice of separating undocumented parents and children who seek to enter the U.S. to flee persecution at home, with a judge handing an early victory to civil rights activists who say the policy is unconstitutional and cruel.

U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw in San Diego on Wednesday denied a motion to dismiss the suit, in which the American Civil Liberties Union argues that splitting up families at the border violates their due process rights.

..."These allegations sufficiently describe government conduct that arbitrarily tears at the sacred bond between parent and child," the judge wrote. The conduct, if true, "is brutal, offensive, and fails to comport with traditional notions of fair play and decency."

...Sabraw said the ACLU's claims are particularly troubling because the plaintiffs in the case had allegedly come to the U.S. seeking asylum out of fear for their well-being in their home countries. The suit applies to migrants who formally present themselves at ports of entry as political refugees as well as those who seek asylum after they are apprehended during illegal border crossings.

"The government actors responsible for the 'care and custody' of migrant children have, in fact, become their persecutors," the judge said.
This isn't a definitive win (yet), as Judge Sabraw "rejected the ACLU's argument that the separation practice violates the Asylum Act and the Administrative Procedure Act." However, she also gave the ACLU "permission to amend its complaint to address deficiencies in those claims."

Betsy Woodruff at the Daily Beast: Ronal Francisco Romero Died in Agony in ICE Custody; Now His Family Is Preparing to Sue. "Border Patrol agents arrested [Honduran native Martina Blasina Romero's] son on May 9, 2018, when he tried to enter the United States illegally. They held him at a Customs and Border Protection detention facility for about six days before turning him over to ICE custody. At about 2:30 a.m. on May 16, the authorities sent him to a local hospital. Less than 24 hours later, he was pronounced dead. Katie Shepherd of the American Immigration Council said health care in CBP facilities — where Romero first got sick — is severely lacking. 'The access to medical care in the CBP holding facilities is virtually nonexistent,' she said. At least 27 people have died in ICE custody since 2015, according to the American Immigration Lawyers Association."

Liz Robbins at the New York Times: He Delivered Pizza to an Army Base in Brooklyn; Now He Faces Deportation. "Pablo Villavicencio Calderon, 35, an undocumented immigrant, was making a delivery from a brick-oven pizza restaurant in Queens to the Army base next to the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge on Friday before lunchtime. According to his wife, Sandra Chica, he presented a New York City identification card, as he had done in the past. ...But on that day, Ms. Chica said, it was not enough for the military police officer on duty, who said Mr. Villavicencio needed a driver's license, which he did not have. A background check revealed an open order of deportation from 2010. Military personnel detained him and called Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, who took him into custody, an official for the immigration agency said."

Lauren Gambino at the Guardian: Immigration Showdown: Dreamers' Future on the Table as Republicans Clash. "A bloc of moderate House Republicans are challenging far-right conservatives — and their leadership — in the latest effort to secure protections for Dreamers, the nearly 700,000 undocumented immigrants protected from deportation under the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Daca) program that Donald Trump terminated. Their rebellion has set the stage for a dramatic showdown over a politically perilous issue that has riven the Republican party — and, some worry, could cost them their majority control in this year's midterms. House Republican leaders have scheduled a private, two-hour conference to discuss the issue on Thursday morning."

Their only concern is their electoral fortunes. That families are being forcibly separated and people are being targeted and attacked and dying in ICE custody doesn't fucking matter. These vile wrecks.

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This seems normal (it does not seem normal):

Alexandra Ma at Business Insider: 'Delete All Your Emails and Then Acid-Wash' Your Hard Drives: Sean Hannity Suggests Mueller Probe Witnesses Should Destroy Their Evidence. "Sean Hannity has called on the witnesses in the special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation to delete their evidence and destroy all their hardware in an attempt to derail the case. The Fox News host on Wednesday night said witnesses should 'acid-wash the emails on the hard drives and your phones' then smash them into 'itsy-bitsy pieces' with a hammer. The advice — which would be illegal to follow — appeared to be sarcastic and was delivered as part of an attack on Hillary Clinton." Hahaha of course it was.

[CN: Sex work stigma; misogyny; video may autoplay at link] Kaelyn Forde at ABC News: Giuliani Takes Swipe at Stormy Daniels, Adult Film Stars: 'I Don't Respect a Porn Star the Way I Respect a Career Woman'. "Rudy Giuliani took aim at Stormy Daniels today, saying that her career as an adult-film star and director undermines her 'credibility' in her lawsuit against the president over their alleged affair. 'So Stormy, you want to bring a case, let me cross-examine you. Because the business you were in entitles you to no degree of giving your credibility any weight,' Giuliani told an audience in Tel Aviv, adding later, 'I'm sorry I don't respect a porn star the way I respect a career woman or a woman of substance or a woman who...isn't going to sell her body for sexual exploitation.'" Someone tell this execrable slut-shaming dipshit that "sex work" and "career" are not mutually exclusive.

Relatedly: Melania has now made two public appearances — at a Gold Star Families event and at the FEMA Hurricane Preparedness event — but has not spoken at either of them. She has walked in and sat down and then remained there in total silence. Odd. To say the least.

[CN: Class warfare]

Fucking hell. This is really bad news. Really bad.

Renae Merle at the Washington Post: Mick Mulvaney Fires All 25 Members of Consumer Watchdog's Advisory Board. "Mick Mulvaney, acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, fired the agency's 25-member advisory board Wednesday, days after some of its members criticized his leadership of the watchdog agency. ...On Monday, 11 CAB members held a news conference and criticized Mulvaney for, among other things, canceling legally required meetings with the group. On Wednesday, group members were notified that they were being replaced — and that they could not reapply for spots on the new board." This fucking administration. JFC.

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

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