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Publisher’s Picks: Our Favorite Stories Of 2012

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2012 was definitely an election year of epic proportions, a watershed moment in history that no one alive will soon forget. But 2012 was also a year filled with amazing, terrifying, fantastic, terrible, wonderful, heart-warming, and heart-breaking incredible stories.

As publisher of The New Civil Rights Movement, one of my greatest satisfactions is sharing beautifully told tales that help people see the world just a little differently.

Sadly, many of those stories often get upstaged by events that are more “exciting,” or more scandalous, or shorter, or just more appealing to the lowest common denominator — and thus get more reads.

I love a well-told tale, news-you-can-use that’s as well-written as it is informative, op-eds that are meaningful, masterful, and take your breath away.

We all have stories we meant to read, wanted to read, bookmarked to read, later, but forgot.

So, today I bring you some of my favorite 2012 stories from some of our amazing writers — favorite because they’re well-written, impassioned, important, under-reported, and, or, well, really deserve your attention. These aren’t news stories as much as they’re just good stories. I looked through all the opinion and op-ed pieces our team wrote this year, and culled not the most popular stories but the very best tales. The list was long, but I wanted to ensure we shared at least these with you again.

I hope you’ll take a moment to read them all, check out the authors’ other works, and share them with your friends, family, social media followers, co-workers, and neighbors.

And remember to read:

2012 In Review: Obama Coalition Enshrines Liberals As America’s New Moral Majority

 

 

Publisher’s Picks: Our Favorite Stories Of 2012

 

John Culhane

Law, Unwrapped: Gay Marriage – Why Chris Christie Is Wrong On All Counts: NJ Governor Chris Christie’s desire to put marriage equality to a vote of the people is wrong. Civil unions are not equality. Only marriage can offer equality.

 

Tanya Domi

The GOP War On Women Demands A New Women’s Rights Agenda for America: “Feminism” with a capital “F” is making a roaring comeback, thanks to the GOP War On Women: misogyny on steroids. It’s time we demand a new women’s rights agenda.

 

Jean Ann Esselink

On Our Radar – The Straight Spouse Network: The Straight Spouse Network helps you when your wife tells you over breakfast that she is in love with another woman, and she is moving her in and you out.

Mother’s Day On Our Radar – Lesbian Supermoms Take On Family Equality: If their names were Ward & June, every right-wing “pro-family” group would be holding them up as an icon of family values. But their names are Jayne and April.

On Our Radar – Everyday People Fighting Everyday Bullies: Despite “Don’t Say Gay” bills or schools refusing Gay-Straight Alliances, across the US hopeful things are happening –everyday people are fighting everyday bullies. (With video)

On Our Radar – The Oxymorons Of The North Carolina Republican Party: The North Carolina Republican Party introduced a noteworthy new phrase into the Tea Party lexicon. “Sexual orientation is not an appropriate category.”

Father’s Day On Our Radar – Two Dads Say Thank You For The Gift Of Sons: A young unmarried mother in Vietnam gave Bob Page and Dale Frederiksen a chance to be fathers. Nine years later they gave her a new life in return. This Fathers Day, the generosity of the human heart is On Our Radar.

On Our Radar – The Romney Millions And The Damage They Have Done: Mitt and Ann Romney have decided they deserve adulation for giving ten percent of their wealth to the Mormon Church – one of the major funders of Prop 8. Today, the LGBT discrimination enabled by the Romney money is On Our Radar.

On Our Radar – The Crucible of Chris Armstrong: This week, a jury awarded out, gay University of Michigan graduate Chris Armstrong 4.5 million dollars after Andrew Shirvell, a former Assistant Michigan Attorney General, stalked and tormented him. Today Chris Armstrong, who showed remarkable grace under pressure, is On Our Radar.

On Our Radar – The “Health Of The Mother” And The War On Women: The Romney campaign announced last week that Mitt was mistaken when he said he believed in a “health of the mother” abortion exception.” What “health of the mother” really means to women is On Our Radar.

On Our Radar – Abstinence Only Sex Education, The American Version Of The Taliban: In Pakistan, the Taliban tries to keep girls uneducated and sexually repressed with beatings and bullets. In America, congress does the same thing with money. Today, abstinence only sex education and the lives it destroys are On Our Radar.

 

Clinton Fein

Yes, It Is Time For That Conversation: This is the time for that conversation. Let’s try regulating guns with the same fervor we do women’s bodies and protect our children with the same ferocity we do fetuses.

Susan G. Komen and the Cancer Within: Susan G. Komen for the Cure, in the wake of its decision to defund Planned Parenthood ended up subjecting itself to harsh scrutiny from which it can’t run nor hide.

 

Max S. Gordon

Proud Americans, Be Who You Are: From Paul Ryan to Michelle Obama, and every American in between, it’s time for “us vs. them” to stop so we can be we. Equally.

An American Mourning: A Remembrance of Emmett Till, Rodney King And Trayvon Martin: Emmett Till, murdered fifty-seven years ago on this day, August 28th, in 1955. His death was a crucial turning point for the Civil Rights movement in America.

Whitney: Sister Can’t Fly On One Wing: Perhaps the drugs were Whitney Houston’s “black” scream, the expression of her rage at the dichotomy between the truth of her life and what we were watching onstage.

 

Zinnia Jones

Is This Really Just ‘Mainstream Christian Advocacy’?: Washington Post’s Dana Milbank describes the Family Research Council as “a mainstream conservative think tank,” “driven by deeply held religious beliefs.” Really?

 

Benjamin Phillips

Christian Pastors Partying Like It’s 538-332 BC: Every pastor preaching genocide must be met with 100 preaching love and acceptance. Christians must adapt their dogma for today, or fully embrace the Bible’s hatred.

God Hates Fags Is The Heart Of The Religious Right: From Tony Perkins to Bryan Fischer to Rick Santorum to Rick Perry to Stacey Campfield, “God hates fags” – the concept – is at the very heart and soul of the Religious Right.

Rick Santorum, The New President Of Jesus: Evangelical Christians have found the new president of Jesus, Rick Santorum, a man terrified of the future, who would destroy the very lives of LGBT Americans.

The Ballad Of John Edwards: If John Edwards were a character in a movie about the rise and fall of a politician from South Carolina the actor they would hire would look just like John Edwards.

 

Ian Rivers

Reflections On Romney: Why Being ‘A Bully’ Is No Laughing Matter: In the wake of revelations that Mitt Romney was a high school gay bashing bully, we learn that bullies are often viewed “as some of the coolest kids at school.”

 

Keph Senett

You’ve Probably Never Even Heard Of The Homeless World Cup — Here’s Why You Should: The 10th Annual Homeless World Cup, a soccer tournament played by homeless and socially-disadvantaged people, attracted over 50,000 spectators its opening weekend.

 

William Lucas Walker

Spilled Milk: Tea and Coco: I’m sure there are many people who’d rush to call me a bad parent for taking my daughter to tea with a drag queen. I’d say they’re wrong. I think every kid in America could benefit from an afternoon with Miss Coco Peru.

Spilled Milk: Strangers On A Train: Did you know September was Grandparents Month? Neither did I. God will smite you, as he does nonobservant Jews and sex fetish bloggers. Unless you do something about it, pronto.

 

Joseph Ward III

Can We Trust Christians? A Question For LGBT People And Straight Allies: Homophobic Christianity is rampant but there are over 5,000 congregations in the U.S. that have declared their unequivocal affirmation of LGBT equality.

 

Stuart Wilber

LGBT Images In Art: The Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name Just Won’t Shut Up!: Four states have major exhibitions at notable museums which focus on works of art that are explicitly or implicitly depictions of LGBTQ subjects or iconography.

 

Images, top, by DonkeyHotey

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BREAKING NEWS

‘The Law Is Clear’: Appeals Court Rules Trump Handpicked Judge Should Never Have Appointed Special Master

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A three-judge panel on the conservative 11th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled against Donald Trump, and effectively against his hand-picked federal district court judge Aileen Cannon in the ex-president’s “special master” case.

The judges, all three conservatives, two of whom appointed to the bench by Trump himself, ruled that Judge Cannon should never have agreed to Trump’s request to appoint a “special master” to review all the items the Dept. of Justice removed from his Mar-a-Lago residence by executing a legal search warrant.

Cannon had ordered the special master to specifically review approximately 100 classified documents, and blocked the DOJ from accessing them while they were under review. That block halted its investigation into Trump’s likely illegal retention of the documents and other items – over 10,000 – he removed from the White House and was string at Mar-a-Lago.

RELATED: In Trump’s ‘Special Master’ Appeal 2 of 3 Judges Are Ones He Appointed – and Both Previously Ruled Against Him

CNN calls Thursday’s ruling “a major defeat for former President Donald Trump.” The appeals court’s ruling halts  “a third-party review of documents seized from his Mar-a-Lago estate,” and “removes a major obstacle to the Justice Department’s investigation into the mishandling of government records from Trump’s time in the White House.”

“The law is clear,” the judges wrote in their ruling Thursday, posted by NBC News’ Daniel Barnes. “We cannot write a rule that allows any subject of a search warrant to block government investigations after the execution of the warrant. Nor can we write a rule that allows only former presidents to do so. Either approach would be a radical reordering of our caselaw limiting the federal courts’ involvement in criminal investigations.”

“And both would violate bedrock separation-of-powers limitations,” they continued. “Accordingly, we agree with the government that the district court improperly exercised equitable jurisdiction, and that dismissal of the entire proceeding is required.”

READ MORE: ‘Roughing Him Up’: Judges Scorch Trump’s Attorney in Tense Hearing Over His ‘Secret’ Argument

They also wrote: “In considering these arguments, we are faced with a choice: apply our usual test; drastically expand the availability of equitable jurisdiction for every subject of a search warrant; or carve out an unprecedented exception in our law for former presidents. We choose the first option. So the case must be dismissed.”

“The district court,” meaning Judge Cannon, “improperly exercised equitable jurisdiction in this case. For that reason, we VACATE the September 5 order on appeal and REMAND with instructions for the district court to DISMISS the underlying civil action.”

 

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News

Right Wing Social Media Platform Parler Announces Kanye West Will No Longer Buy It in ‘Interest of Both Parties’

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After Kanye West‘s antisemitic and racist remarks last month, which led to him being deplatformed by Twitter and Instagram, the extremist artist and rapper announced he was purchasing the right wing “free speech” social media platform Parler, which performs little content moderation.

On Thursday, hours after West went on far right extremist and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ show and praised Adolf Hitler, Parler issued a statement saying by mutual agreement West would not be purchasing the platform.

But the Parler statement, which came from its parent company, also claimed the decision had been made weeks ago.

“In response to numerous media inquiries, Parlement Technologies would like to confirm that the company has mutually agreed with Ye to terminate the intent of sale of Parler,” Parler said on Twitter. “This decision was made in the interest of both parties in mid-November.”

READ MORE: ‘This Is Nazism’: Americans Outraged After Kanye West Praises Hitler – ‘This Is Not a Clown Show. It’s Dangerous’

On Thursday, stunning many, West told Alex Jones, “I see good things about Hitler,” as Consequence reported. “Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.” 

When West had agreed to purchase Parler, he stated, “In a world where conservative opinions are considered to be controversial we have to make sure we have the right to freely express ourselves.”

CNBC reported last month that “Parler, which initially launched in 2018, was swept up in controversy last year over the role it played in the Jan. 6, 2021, riots at the Capitol building. That led a slew of tech companies, including Google and Amazon, to blacklist the service, rendering its app and website inaccessible.”

READ MORE: Matt Gaetz ‘Wingman’ Joel Greenberg Sentenced to 11 Years in Prison – Attorney ‘Disappointed’ Others Not Prosecute

Parler’s CEO is George Farmer, who is married to far right commentator Candace Owens. Owens several years ago had her own Hitler-praising scandal.

Owens, promoting nationalism, told young supporters in London, “Whenever we say nationalism, the first thing people think about, at least in America, is Hitler.”

“But if Hitler just wanted to make Germany great and have things run well, OK, fine. The problem is that he wanted, he had dreams outside of Germany. He wanted to globalise. He wanted everybody to be German, everybody to be speaking German. Everybody to look a different way. To me, that’s not nationalism.”

Hitler was responsible for the slaughter of up to 17 million people.

 

Image via Tinseltown / Shutterstock

 

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

‘This Is Nazism’: Americans Outraged After Kanye West Praises Hitler – ‘This Is Not a Clown Show. It’s Dangerous’

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Disgraced rapper and antisemite Kanye West on Thursday praised Adolf Hitler while in an interview with far right extremist and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Many are expressing outrage online.

“I see good things about Hitler,” West told Jones, as Consequence reports. “Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.” 

In between those two remarks West launched into a plethora of lies about all the good things Hitler has done, including inventing the microphone (false) and highways (also false.)

West doubled down, exclaiming, “I like Hitler,” and said, “the Jewish media has made us feel like Nazis and Hitler have never offered us anything of value to the world.”

West, who brought a white supremacist with him to dine with Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago last week, today also claimed he loves everyone but injected antisemitic tropes about contracts and pornography.

“I think most Jews are great people,” West said, while claiming, “I agree there’s a Jewish mafia.”

West, who goes by “Ye,” astonishingly “took credit for popularizing antisemitism,” Consequence reports, “saying, ‘No one in high school knew what antisemitic meant until Ye made it popular.'”

That, too, is a lie.

The outrage online is palpable.

U.S. Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY) tweeted, “JUST NOW: ‘I see good things about Hitler, also. The Jews… Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.’
— Kanye West on far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ InfoWars show.”

“This is Nazism,” he added. “When are we going to say ENOUGH?”

Many pointed to a wildly offensive tweet posted by GOP Congressman Jim Jordan, who heads the House Judiciary Republicans. After nearly two months it was removed within minutes of West praising Hitler.

U.S. Rep. Eric Falwell (D-CA) blasted Jordan, saying: “for 2 months you were cool with Jew-bashing.”

Sam Stern of Politico and MSNBC took a wider view.

“We’re all gawking at Kanye saying he sees ‘good things about Hitler’ but i can’t escape the absolute dread that people who know no better and look up to this man and stumble upon this interview will be moved, even on the margins, by him,” he tweeted. “This is not a clown show. It’s dangerous.”

As did actor Josh Gad:

“It’s not what Kanye West says that scares me. It’s that he has 30 million followers who listen to his insanity on top of a cheerleader in the form of the current owner of this platform. No one who says “I love Hitler” should be allowed any oxygen on any social platform (period).”

There is video online of Kanye West’s vile remarks. NCRM will not post or link to it.

 

Image via Shutterstock

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