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Occupy Wall Street: NYPD Chains Transgender Man To Jail Restroom For 8 Hours

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A transgender man arrested Saturday as part of the Occupy Wall Street protest at the Brooklyn Bridge was verbally and physically humiliated by the New York Police Department (NYPD), including being inappropriately patted-down, segregated from other arrested persons, refused repeated requests for food — despite the fact that other prisoners were fed — and chained for eight hours to the wall of a restroom in an NYC jail, according to a statement he released.

“The NYC police department needs to have a protocol and train its officers on how to treat transgender people. No one should experience the blatant discrimination and embarrassment that I did,” writes justin adkins (who spelled his name in all lower-case letters) in a statement he released that includes the following:

They took me away from the cellblock where they had all of the protestors locked up and
brought me to a room with 2 cells and a bathroom. One small cell was empty and the
large cell had about 8 men who had been arrested on charges not related to the protest.
Unlike me, these men had been arrested for a variety of crimes, some violent. When I
entered the room they had me sit down in a chair on the same portion of the wall as the
restroom, and then handcuffed my right wrist to a metal handrail. I thought that this was
a temporary arrangement as they tried to find me a separate cell as part of some
protocol regarding transgender people, which I later discovered does not exist in New
York City. After about an hour I realized that they had no intention of moving me. I
remained handcuffed to this bar next to the bathroom for the next 8 hours.

The cells, on the other side of the precinct where they had locked up the other 69
protestors, did not have working toilets so every person who had to use the toilet was brought to the one next to where they had me locked to the railing. This was not only
disgusting but also embarrassing. The smell of urine was so strong that I, and the men
locked up in the cell in the room that I was in, mentioned the odor on more than
one occasion.

Once they started bringing women in to use the bathrooms, a short young female officer,
who was in charge of people locked up in the room where I was handcuffed, harshly
turned my chair around with my arm still locked to the railing but now pinned behind my
back. She said that she knew it hurt but that they were bringing in women to use the
restroom and she could not have me watching. I had no interest in watching anyone use
the bathroom, and every-time a male had come into use the restroom I had respectfully
turned away. This process of people coming in and out to use the restroom went on for
the full 8 hours.

I was distinctly treated differently than the other protestors during my entire time at
Precinct 90 in Brooklyn. At one point in the night all of the protestors were given a
peanut butter sandwich and water. I asked for a sandwich three times but of all of the
officers who came in and out of the room where I was handcuffed never acknowledged
my request. I think this was because when I asked for a sandwich the men locked up in
the room I was in asked for one too. I do not know when or how long those men were
being held but I was there for eight hours and had sat on the bridge for about 2 hours
and was never once offered water or a sandwich when my fellow
protestors received both.

The New Civil Rights Movement has reached out to Speaker Quinn’s office for comment.

In an unrelated statement, NY1 reported yesterday on  Saturday’s protest:

Mayor Michael Bloomberg called the Wall Street protests “misguided” on Friday, and on Sunday, in the wake of hundreds of arrests the previous night, the mayor said the New York City Police Department is handling the demonstrators the right way.

“The police did exactly what they were supposed to do,” said the mayor. “It’s very easy to get a permit to protest, to parade in New York City, as long as it doesn’t interfere with other peoples’ rights.”

Organizers at Zuccotti Park did not want to respond to the mayor’s remarks.

Protesters claimed NYPD officers led them onto the roadway on the Brooklyn Bridge Saturday night, then detained and arrested more than 700 demonstrators.

Police said the protesters were warned beforehand.

It was the latest confrontation between the anti-corporate group and police. A week ago, police pepper sprayed some protesters during a march in Manhattan.

If the demonstrators were expecting much support from local elected officials, they had not received much of it. On Sunday, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, a leading mayoral candidate, agreed with Bloomberg’s assessment of the latest event.

“We all have the right to protest. The police, when it spills over into civil disobedience, have the right to arrest individuals who are engaging in civil disobedience, as has happened to me a few times,” said Quinn.

Additionally, adkins also states he is “a trans activist and website developer living in Williamstown, MA. He works at Williams College as the Assistant Director of the Multicultural Center where he coordinates LGBTQ programing, advises students and advocates for LGBTQ-inclusive policies on campus and beyond.”

https://youtube.com/watch?v=P8wdQzAvNJk%3Fversion%3D3%26hl%3Den_US

(Hat tip: Towleroad)

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‘Smug’: Governor Scorched for Signing Ten Commandments Bill as Child Faints

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Louisiana Republican Governor Jeff Landry signed into law on Thursday legislation mandating a version of the Bible’s Ten Commandments must be posted in every public school classroom, after bragging he looked forward to civil rights groups suing him. Gov. Landry, the former state attorney general, has been criticized nationally for what experts say is a violation of the First Amendment, but that criticism widened Thursday as a little girl standing behind the governor appeared to faint as the governor continued his remarks (video below), apparently without noticing.

After the governor described the bill to tremendous applause from guests, the child fell to the floor. Governor Landry, seemingly unaware, continued, declaring, “if you want to protect the rule of law you got to start from the original law giver.”

Highlighting what some experts see as the First Amendment violation in the law he was about to sign, Landry continued, claiming Moses was the original lawgiver.

READ MORE: ‘Morally Bankrupt Loser’: Top Trump VP Contender Wants to Deport 20 Million People

Historians and religious experts might disagree with the governor. In some cultures, for example, Hammurabi, King of Babylon, is credited as the original lawgiver. In Ancient Greece, Athenian statesman Solon is considered to have that role. And in ancient India, that role belonged to Manu.

Responding to Landry’s “original lawgiver” remark, researcher Eric Kleefeld commented, “If that’s your rationale, then you ought to be posting the Code of Ur-Nammu, the oldest known set of written laws that archaeologists have ever found, from ancient Sumeria.”

Critics blasted Landry, both for not realizing the child directly behind him had fallen ill, and for the alleged First Amendment violation.

“Gov. Landry with a self-satisfied smug look while a young child passes out behind him,” remarked MSNBC legal correspondent Katie Phang.

“Christian Nationalism is front and center in the South. Scared of Project 2025? It’s happening in our states,” commented U.S. Rep. Maxwell Frost (D-FL).

READ MORE: How SCOTUS ‘Let Trump Off the Hook’ and ‘Interfered in the 2024 Elections’: Expert

“Remember everyone…this is about the kids. Not the one me whom literally passed out behind him. But, definitely kids,” commented former Lincoln Project executive director Fred Wellman.

Louisiana ranks near the bottom in education, at number 47 according to U.S. News and World Report.

Watch the video below or at this link.

RELATED: ‘I Can’t Wait to Be Sued’ Gov. Brags Over Ten Commandments Bill – Rights Groups Vow To Oblige

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Pence’s $10 Million Spending Spree Will Help Trump Campaign on Tax Cuts for the Rich

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Former Vice President Mike Pence, who is not endorsing Donald Trump, is spending $10 million in an effort to preserve the Trump tax cuts that largely benefitted ultra-wealthy millionaires and billionaires, which will help his ex-boss’s re-election efforts.

Advancing American Freedom, Pence’s political advocacy group, “is launching a $10 million campaign to push for an extension of the Trump-era tax cuts, which are set to expire next year and will likely play a key role in the 2024 election,” according to The Hill.

President Joe Biden has said he wants to eliminate Trump’s 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for those making over $400,000, NBC News reports The tax cuts have added $1 to $2 trillion dollars to the national debt.

“A CBO report in May estimated that extending the provisions of Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would increase deficits by nearly $5 trillion into 2034,” the Associated Press reports, adding that Pence’s group is “press[ing] conservatives not to stray from the fight before the November election.”

READ MORE: How SCOTUS ‘Let Trump Off the Hook’ and ‘Interfered in the 2024 Elections’: Expert

Pence’s group also “released a 13-page blueprint Thursday with arguments being made to Capitol Hill and to voters in swing states, particularly in those that could decide control of the Senate.”

“As of May 2020, the Tax Policy Center estimated the tax cuts would add between $1 and $2 trillion to the federal debt by 2025. The Center for American Progress estimated the bill will have cost roughly $1.7 trillion by the end of fiscal year 2023 on June 30,” according to a 2023 USA Today fact check on the Trump tax cuts.

“The benefits of the 2017 tax changes were overwhelmingly skewed toward the wealthy,” the Center for American Progress reported in April. It provided “the largest tax cuts to the very wealthy,” which “failed to trickle down to ordinary workers.”

“The most significant piece of legislation former President Donald Trump signed during his first term had a dramatic cut in the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent as its centerpiece,” Center for American Progress Action reported last week in “Trump’s $50 Billion Tax Giveaway to the 100 Largest Corporations.”

“That corporate tax cut did not trickle down to ordinary workers but cost $1.3 trillion and helped fuel a record $1 trillion in stock buybacks the year after it passed.”

READ MORE: ‘I Can’t Wait to Be Sued’ Gov. Brags Over Ten Commandments Bill – Rights Groups Vow To Oblige
 

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How SCOTUS ‘Let Trump Off the Hook’ and ‘Interfered in the 2024 Elections’: Expert

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The U.S. Supreme Court has yet to hand down its decision on Donald Trump’s claim of absolute immunity for his “official” acts as President, despite first being asked to do so by Special Counsel Jack Smith 192 days ago. But one expert says, in a way, they already have.

Many court watchers expected the Court to rule on the question of Trump’s claim to immunity from prosecution Thursday morning, but none came.

“Don’t hold your breath waiting for the presidential immunity decision. If you’re wondering whether the MAGA majority on the Court will let Trump off the hook, they already have. By doing so, they have already interfered in the 2024 elections,” charges Michael Podhorzer, former political director of the AFL-CIO, and the political strategist deemed the “architect” of the secret bipartisan shadow campaign that saved the 2020 election, according to TIME magazine.

The Supreme Court has “forced a historic crisis—an irreconcilable showdown between the normal operation of the criminal justice system (which should find Trump in pretrial and trial proceedings for his January 6th crimes over the next five months) and the normal functioning of presidential elections (which should find him campaigning full-time during those months),” Podhorzer wrote on social media Wednesday. “It didn’t have to be this way; it’s a crisis entirely of their own manufacturing.”

READ MORE: ‘I Can’t Wait to Be Sued’ Gov. Brags Over Ten Commandments Bill – Rights Groups Vow To Oblige

Podhorzer was behind something of a “conspiracy unfolding behind the scenes,” a bipartisan effort to tamp down protests or violence when Donald Trump lost the 2020 election, that included “an informal alliance between left-wing activists and business titans… that both curtailed the protests and coordinated the resistance from CEOs,” TIME reported just weeks after Joe Biden was sworn into office.

“The pact was formalized in a terse, little-noticed joint statement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and AFL-CIO published on Election Day. Both sides would come to see it as a sort of implicit bargain–inspired by the summer’s massive, sometimes destructive racial-justice protests–in which the forces of labor came together with the forces of capital to keep the peace and oppose Trump’s assault on democracy.”

Podhorzer now alleges there has been a “hijacking” by “MAGA judges,” in a social media thread called “powerful” by former Nixon White House Counsel John Dean.

“Imagine you were told that in another country, a president who had been defeated in a free and fair election attempted a coup, for which he was indicted—but four years later, the very judges he had appointed have helped protect him from standing trial so he could return to office” he posits.

READ MORE: ‘Fact Checking His Delusions’: Trump’s Falsehoods May Not Be Lies Anymore, Critics Warn

“Whether it’s in Orban’s Hungary, Erdogan’s Turkey, Putin’s Russia, or now the United States, authoritarian movements consistently attempt to amass and consolidate power by hijacking courts to provide them with post-hoc impunity. In the US’s case, the hijacking we now confront by the MAGA judges is the result of decades of hollowing out judicial independence by the Federalist Society and its revanchist backers.”

And it started, Podhorzer says, with Bush v. Gore, the 2000 Supreme Court decision that placed George W. Bush in the White House.

“Since Bush v. Gore, the GOP-appointed justices have consistently acted to benefit Republicans electorally.”

In his social media thread Podhorzer does not mention that three right-wing justices on the U.S. Supreme Court today were part of the Bush legal team’s effort at the Supreme Court nearly a quarter-century ago: Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and Justice Amy Coney Barrett.

The rest of Podhorzer’s thread recounts at least half-a-dozen instances when right wing justices have worked to help Republicans.

“Let’s be clear,” he concludes. ” All six GOP-appointed SCOTUS justices, and Judge Aileen Cannon, have current or former associations with the Federalist Society. None of them can be impartial about cases involving Trump, because his defeat will also mean the defeat of their hard-fought ideological legacy.”

READ MORE: Republican Who Declared His State a ‘2nd Amendment Sanctuary’ Blocks Senate Bump Stock Ban

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