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23-Year Old Beheaded In Anti-Gay Hate Crime Murder In South Africa

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A 23-year old transgender and gay man was beheaded in his home town of Kuruman, South Africa Friday, in an anti-gay hate crime. Thapelo Makutle, who was crowned Miss Gay Kuruman, was murdered by two men who remain at large. Reports state that police, for reasons of language and training, are not classifying the murder as a hate crime, and do not understand the significance of the attack. On report states the police reject that Makutle was beheaded, but acknowledge his throat was slashed.

Mamba Online reports:

According to the group Legbo Northern Cape, Thapelo Makutle was attacked at his place of work in the John Taolo Gaetsewe district on Friday. The organisation said that there was an argument related to “his sexuality and homosexuality”.

His two attackers are believed to have followed him to the room where he lived and on Saturday cut his throat, decapitating him.

They left his body under a blanket as though he were sleeping.

Makutle, who identified as both gay and transgender, was a volunteer for Legbo Northern Cape. He recently participated in the Kimberley Out In Africa Gay and Lesbian Festival, was known as a beauty queen named Queen Bling and was recently crowned Miss Gay Kuruman.

“It’s so sad. I can’t describe the pain that we are feeling right now,” Shaine Griqua, director of Legbo Northern Cape, told Mambaonline. “We have lost a young, talented, gay man who was open about who he was. The last few days have been like a dark cloud.”

He said that no arrests have yet been made in connection with the murder. He expressed his frustration with the lack of support for LGBT people in the Northern Cape and noted that hate crimes are on the rise in the province.

“We recently had a lesbian stabbed three times in a bar because they said that she should be a woman and not a man. She chose not to press charges because she didn’t want her family involved,” Griqua said.

“The government is not interested in this problem,” he added.

A later report form Mamba Online states:

According to the Mothibistad police, Thapelo Makutle’s body was found lying on the floor of his rented room. It is alleged that the victim has been out with his friends that night. He left unannounced and his friends assumed that he had gone home to sleep.

Shaine Griqua, Director of Legbo Northern Cape, who first reported the attack, said that confusion around the state of the body likely stems from miscommunication due to most people in the area not speaking English as a first language.

Griqua believes that the attack was a hate crime and said that he has information that Makutle was killed as a result of an argument about his sexuality and gender appearance, but police have yet to confirm this, saying that the motive is as yet unknown.

He told Mambaonline that the police in the area are ill-equipped to deal appropriately with a hate crime.

“These people [the police] are not reliable. They don’t even know what a hate crime is. If you ask them if it was related to his sexuality they will say ‘no’ because they don’t understand the context,” Griqua insisted.

Global Post adds:

In a statement, Cosatu’s Northern Cape secretary Anele Gxoyiya condemned “this brutal attack on a young, brilliant and educated soul whose head was chopped off in a hate crime.”

While South Africa is one of the few countries in the world to extend equal rights to homosexuals, and the only nation in Africa to allow same-sex marriage, the reality of life in townships and rural areas for gays and lesbians has been one of often brutal violence.

In a high-profile incident last year, Noxolo Nogwaza, a lesbian activist based in KwaThema township near Johannesburg, was gang-raped and then stabbed and stoned to death, in what the New York-based group Human Rights Watch described as part of an “epidemic” of hate crimes against gays and lesbians in South Africa.

Politics Web published a statement in response to the murder, by Lindiwe Mazibuko MP, Democratic Alliance Parliamentary Leader:

This violent and gruesome assault is yet another reminder that many of our country’s people are still denied the basic rights and freedoms which our Constitution enshrines.

There is a spate of homophobic hate crimes which have recently taken place across our country, including the repugnant and unconscionable crime of so-called “corrective rape” committed against lesbian South African women.

At this time, South Africa needs strong leadership from President Jacob Zuma, and an indication of his commitment to ensuring that all South Africans are able to live their lives free from fear of discrimination or violence.

Unfortunately, the silence from the Presidency has been deafening. This silence is made worse by the fact that President Zuma has in the past shown himself to be prejudiced towards homosexuals.

Last year, the DA welcomed the establishment of a government-led Joint Task Team on a “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) Intervention Strategy”, established in September 2011, under the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development.

Unfortunately, this task team has yet to make any report on its work.

Meanwhile, the spate of crimes continues.

President Zuma must speak out against this weekend’s horrific murder, and the many others like it, which are in danger of becoming all too commonplace in our country today.

I will today be calling for a debate in Parliament about the prevalence of these crimes in South Africa, and calling on MPs to discuss what can be done by the government to address this ongoing problem.

In addition, I will also be writing to the President to ask what immediate steps his government will be taking to address the violence and intimidation that homosexual South Africans must face on a daily basis.

Such crimes, and the President’s silence on them, cannot be allowed to continue.

Hat-tip: Towleroad

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

‘Let’s Be Blunt’: Bannon Blasts Huckabee Sanders as ‘Not Intellectually Capable’ After ‘Insulting’ SOTU Response

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Arkansas Republican Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders delivered the Republican Party’s official response to President Joe Biden’s State of the Union Address and was panned from all sides.

Many on the left were angered and outraged as she attacked LGBTQ and Black Americans in a lengthy speech that was tall on culture war rhetoric and extremism and short on policy or vision.

But even those on the right seems exasperated with her remarks.

READ MORE: Yes, the GOP Has Repeatedly Said It Wants to Gut Social Security and Medicare Before Calling Biden a ‘Liar’ – Here’s Proof

Lou Dobbs, the far-right-wing culture warrior and former Fox Business anchor, told former Trump White House chief strategist Steve Bannon that Huckabee Sanders’ speech was “unacceptable,” and, “an insult to President Trump” for “not mentioning his name,” as Media Matters reports.

“Sarah Huckabee went to Iraq with the President,” Dobbs recalled, which the former White House press secretary spent an unusually large portion of her remarks discussing, “and the First Lady in the dark of night, for Christmas, with our troops.”

“To not mention is name, to talk about ‘new leadership’ – it looked like the Governor’s Association had written much of that speech, and aligned themselves with Ron DeSantis,” Dobbs lamented, calling it a “lack of respect to POTUS.”

READ MORE: Former GOP Congressman Calls for Marjorie Taylor Greene to Be Censured After Calling President Biden a ‘Liar’

Bannon, convicted on two federal criminal contempt charges, agreed that her remarks were “an insult to Trump.”

“She does not exist, politically, if it’s not for President Trump,” Bannon continued. “I thought the speech was terrible.”

“If you’re going to give a counter speech, you’ve got to talk about important issues. Don’t get me wrong, the wokeism is very important. But it’s not quite the heart of the matter right now, right? It’s not the heart of the matter. She is not — the reason is she’s just not — she’s not intellectually capable of going to the heart of the matter, right? Let’s be blunt.”

“This was like written by Ron DeSantis and the entire RGA,” Bannon said, referring to the Republican Governors’ Association.

Watch below or at this link.

 

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'FEIGNING OUTRAGE'

Yes, the GOP Has Repeatedly Said It Wants to Gut Social Security and Medicare Before Calling Biden a ‘Liar’ – Here’s Proof

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Many across the nation were likely horrified but not surprised Tuesday night when Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), and several other House and Senate Republicans lashed out at President Joe Biden as he delivered the State of the Union Address, falsely branding him a “liar” for telling the truth: The GOP has consistently called to gut, sunset, or otherwise dramatically alter or dismantle the critical, life-saving social safety nets of Social Security and Medicare.

But it’s no secret Republicans for years, including recently, have wanted to take an ax to these programs, and other “entitlements,” despite proof they literally save lives.

Just Monday, Bloomberg reported, “House Republican committee and caucus chairs are pushing to create panels to study extending Social Security and Medicare solvency as part of any debt limit deal.”

“The discussion about creating commissions indicates some policy proposals floated by Republicans on entitlements — such as increasing the eligibility age or adding means-testing measures — are a possibility, even as GOP leaders say they’re not negotiating policy changes directly as part of a debt-limit vote,” Bloomberg added.

READ MORE: Former GOP Congressman Calls for Marjorie Taylor Greene to Be Censured After Calling President Biden a ‘Liar’

Cutting, gutting, altering, or otherwise tampering with “entitlements” (which also include federal and state programs paid for by workers via their paychecks) has been a core policy of the Republican Party for years.

Donald Trump repeatedly called for gutting Social Security and Medicare, a fact that appears to have been conveniently forgotten by some of his staunchest supporters.

Numerous House and Senate Republicans have either attacked or outright called for gutting, “sunsetting,” or otherwise dramatically altering Social Security and Medicare in the past year, including U.S. Senators Rick Scott (FL), Mike Lee (UT), Lindsey Graham (SC), Ted Cruz (TX), Ron Johnson (WI), Ted Budd (NC), and U.S. Reps. Rick Allen (GA), Mike Waltz (NC), Kevin Hern (OK), and others.

Here’s Rep. Greene and most of the Republican caucus Tuesday night heckling the President, with some including Greene calling him a “liar.”

Proud of her disruption of centuries of decorum, after the State of the Union Greene told reporters, “I don’t clap for liars.”

Greene then recorded video after shouting “You’re lying!” and “Liar!” at President Biden, defending her antics — by lying.

Greene may have led the charge but she was far from the only culprit lying about the President of the United States in a nationally-televised speech that was seen in several parts of the world.

READ MORE: Republicans ‘Acting Like Jackasses’ Because Biden Nailed Them on Social Security: Morning Joe

Here’s U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), once floated as a Trump Supreme Court nominee, “feigning outrage” at President Biden’s truthful claim, and video of him calling to gut Social Security and Medicare. In fact, he says in the video the reason he was running for Senate was to pull up “by the roots” Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

And U.S. Senator Rick Scott, the head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), getting called out by Fox News for wanting to “sunset” Social Security and Medicare.

U.S. Rep. Rick Allen, Republican of Georgia, claiming people are telling him they “want to work longer,” as he says he wants to raise the retirement age, which would dramatically alter Social Security and Medicare.

Or an apparently younger U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX), calling Social Security a Ponzi scheme:

Center for American Progress Action’s research director, Will Ragland, in October pointed out Trump has repeatedly promised to gut Social Security and Medicare:

“Every single budget Trump proposed would’ve cut hundreds of billions of dollars from Social Security, Medicare, & Medicaid,” Ragland says.

READ MORE: ‘Salute Their Flags’: Sarah Huckabee Sanders Appears to Attack LGBTQ Americans and BLM During Angry GOP SOTU Response

And video of Trump saying it as recently as 2020:

Literally dozens of Republicans back in October called for gutting, sunsetting, or killing Social Security and Medicare. This was the GOP playbook just a few months ago.

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham in June: “entitlement reform is a must.”

U.S. Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) in August saying he wants to “fix” “broken” Social Security and Medicare by turning them into “discretionary” spending:

U.S. Senator Ted Budd (R-NC), as a candidate, agreed with the “major points’ of Sen. Rick Scott’s 11-point plan which included sunsetting all federal programs, which would include Social Security and Medicare. (Sen. Scott just hours ago “doubled down” on his call to die just that.)

U.S. Rep. Mike Waltz (R-NC) just one month ago called for “big reforms,” and said: “if we really want to talk about the debt and spending, it’s the entitlements program.”

Mike Pence, likely a 2024 presidential candidate, just days ago talked about dramatically altering Social Security, Medicare, and all “entitlements.”

Many of those who have been trying to gut Social Security belong to the far-right Republican Study Committee.

Last summer NBC News reported: “The Republican Study Committee, a large group of House conservatives, proposed a budget in June that would incrementally raise the retirement age to collect Social Security, based on changing life spans, and lower benefits over the long term by using a new formula.”

 

This article has been updated to include the portion on Mike Pence.

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News

Republicans ‘Acting Like Jackasses’ Because Biden Nailed Them on Social Security: Morning Joe

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MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough called out Republicans for acting foolishwhen confronted by President Joe Biden for proposed cuts to Social Security and Medicare.

The president urged Congress to protect the broadly popular social programs, saying “some Republicans want Medicare and Social Security to sunset,” which prompted literal howls from Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and a handful of GOP lawmakers, but the “Morning Joe” host said Biden’s claim was on the mark.

“If you’re at home an you’re not as much of a nerd as me and you don’t follow all this stuff, let me tell you something, they were booing reality, Republicans,” Scarborough said. “Joe Biden said that one administration raised the debt more than first 220 years of president, we can say to you on the show, that’s a truth, the debt went up 25 percent. When he said Republicans raised the debt ceiling three times during the Trump administration — wait, why are they booing? They did it. They’re booing themselves for doing that.”

“Then, this is the one that gets me, talking about sunsetting Social Security and Medicare every five years, nobody dreamed that up — that was the head of the Republican Senate Campaign Committee,” Scarborough added. “He won’t say his name, I will say his name. Say his name: Rick Scott, the most powerful Republican in the United States Senate for running campaigns. So they’re acting like jackasses because they can’t deal with the truth, can’t deal with the truth, and they make themselves look foolish.”

READ MORE: ‘Only in Mississippi’: White representatives vote to create white-appointed court system for Blackest city in America

House speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was seen at several points trying in vain to shush the hecklers in his caucus, and Scarborough said the reward structure in GOP politics gave the noisiest lawmakers outsized influence.

“Here is the problem being a leader of Republicans right now is Marjorie Taylor Greene just gave a gift to Joe Biden, gave a gift to the Democratic Party, gave a gift to every Democrat that is running against Republicans who won in Biden districts,” Scarborough said, “and yet the incentive structure is such that Marjorie Taylor Greene will raise a million dollars by calling the president a liar. So you have all of these extremists that are raising a ton of money while damaging their party and they just don’t care. So if you’re Kevin McCarthy, what do you do?”

Watch the video below or at this link.

 

 

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