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Sen. Chuck Grassley To LGBT Victims Of Domestic Abuse: You Don’t Exist

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The GOP, led by the infamously bigoted Senator Chuck Grassley, is telling LGBT victims of domestic abuse that they simply do not exist, in his new substitute version of the decades-old Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Democrats have been trying hard to add protections for LGBT people, Native Americans, and immigrants into the bill, to which Grassley and his Republican colleagues have been vociferously objecting.

Now, as Think Progress’s Annie-Rose Strasser reports today, Grassley has teamed up with Texas Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison to “water down” the Violence Against Women Act — an effort the White House publicly opposes. In “GOP Tries To Water Down Violence Against Women Act, Expresses Willingness To Tolerate Some Domestic Abuse,” Strasser writes:

Although the full details of Grassley and Hutchinson’s watered down protections for domestic violence victims have yet to be released, it is likely that they will map Grassley’s previously stated opposition to providing greater support for LGBT, undocumented, and tribal victims of domestic violence. The Hutchison/Grassley amendment will likely leave out some victims who face particularly harsh discrimination. If Senate Republicans embrace Grassley’s earlier objections to reauthorizing VAWA, they will show that they are willing to tolerate a certain amount of domestic violence by ignoring certain victims:

For Native victims: In 86 percent of reported rapes or sexual assaults on Native women, the perpetrators are non-Native. While Hutchison has criticized the tribal provisions, saying that ‘any American’ could be imprisoned by tribal courts, in actuality, the provisions allow tribal members to prosecute a non-tribal people who commit domestic violence and who either live or work on a reservation, or are married to a tribal member. The Grassley / Hutchison amendment requires any domestic violence to be prosecuted in federal courts, meaning that rural tribal victims won’t seek help. Additionally, federal prosecutors “already decline to prosecute half of Indian Country crimes that are referred to them,” and with the added number of domestic violence crimes, victims are likely to never see justice.

For LGBT victims: The new version of the bill also lacks any additional provisions for the LGBT community, blanketing over LGBT-specific issues with gender neutral language that lumps the needs of gay and lesbian protections in with the needs of straight couples. The original version of VAWA says that domestic violence shelters cannot discriminate against gay, lesbian, or trans people, but the new version says nothing about this issue. Grassley has said that he does not believe discrimination in shelters is an issue — despite the fact that “44.6 percent of LGBT/HIV-positive survivors of intimate partner violence were turned away from shelters.”

For undocumented victims: The Grassley/Hutchison version of the bill takes out the added visas for undocumented people who are beaten and seek assistance from the state. The visas are put in place so that victims aren’t too scared to contact the authorities when they find themselves physically harmed or in danger. When such protections don’t exist, people are forced to work outside of the law to protect themselves.

(Emphasis ours.)

Last summer, Senator Grassley out-right lied during the DOMA repeal debate. Earlier this month, Senator Grassley called President Barack Obama “stupid” via Twitter.

There are, however, a few GOP outliers, like Senator John McCain, who blasted Democrats this morning on the Senate floor for what he called an “imaginary war” on women, but who does support the reauthorization of the VAWA.

“My friends, this supposed ‘War on Women’ or the use of similarly outlandish rhetoric by partisan operatives has two purposes, and both are purely political in their purpose and effect: The first is to distract citizens from real issues that really matter and the second is to give talking heads something to sputter about when they appear on cable television. Neither purpose does anything to advance the well-being of any American,” Senator McCain said, adding, “To suggest that one group of us or one party speaks for all women or that one group has an agenda to harm women and another to help them is ridiculous.”

 

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FASCISM

‘Just Shoot Them’: Trump Told Top US General to ‘Crack Skulls’ and ‘Beat the F’ Out of Civil Rights Protestors: New Book

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President Donald Trump told America’s highest-ranking general and top law enforcement officials to “shoot” civil rights protestors in Seattle and Portland, “crack their skulls,” and “beat the f–k” out of them, according to a new book by a Wall Street Journal reporter.

“The President would highlight videos that showed law enforcement getting physical with protesters and tell his administration he wanted to see more of that behavior,” CNN reports, citing excerpts from Michael Bender’s book, “Frankly, We Did Win This Election: The Inside Story of How Trump Lost.”

“That’s how you’re supposed to handle these people,” Trump told his top law enforcement and military officials, according to Bender. “Crack their skulls!”

Trump also told his team that he wanted the military to go in and “beat the f–k out” of the civil rights protesters, Bender writes.

“Just shoot them,” Trump said on multiple occasions inside the Oval Office, according to the excerpts.

But Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley (photo, right) refused, Bender reveals, with Milley and Attorney General Bill Barr often finding themselves the only ones willing to push back against the president.

General Milley, who made headlines Wednesday after delivering a stunning lecture on critical race theory and “wokeness” to U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who was not pleased by it, also pushed back against Trump senior advisor, white supremacist Stephen Miller.

During one Oval Office debate, senior Trump adviser Stephen Miller chimed in, equating the scenes unfolding on his television to those in a third-world country and claiming major American cities had been turned into war zones.

“These cities are burning,” Miller warned, according to the excerpts.

The comment infuriated Milley, who viewed Miller as not only wrong but out of his lane, Bender writes, noting the Army general who had commanded troops in Iraq and Afghanistan spun around in his seat and pointed a finger directly at Miller.

“Shut the f–k up, Stephen,” Milley snapped, according to the excerpts.

Read the entire report at CNN.

 

Image of President Trump and General Milley: Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead via Flickr

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WHATEVER HAPPENED TO COMPETENCY?

‘No Time to Waste’: DeSantis Blasted for Going on Fox News as Biden and Miami Mayor Urge Him to Request State of Emergency

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Florida GOP Governor Ron DeSantis is taking time to pose for the cameras and talk to Fox News in the wake of the stunning partial building collapse that more than 12 hours later has left 99 people missing, and feared dead.

DeSantis reportedly added an interview with far right Fox News host Mark Levin to his calendar for Thursday.

President Joe Biden during a news conference announcing a bipartisan agreement on, appropriately, an infrastructure bill on-camera Thursday afternoon urged the Florida Republican governor to ask for a declaration of a state of emergency, but DeSantis has yet to do so – nor has he declared a state of emergency himself for the Surfside disaster. President Biden appears to have ordered FEMA to Florida to assess the situation, which is the most they are allowed to do until the governor acts.

Also urging DeSantis to request a state of emergency declaration is Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, who says “there is no time to waste.”

Apparently DeSantis believes there is, and many are blasting the likely 2024 GOP presidential hopeful.

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NOT AN EXPERT

Watch: MSNBC’s Joy Reid Takes Down Architect of the Critical Race Theory Culture War in Epic Debate

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MSNBC host Joy Reid took on Christopher Rufo, the think-tank “scholar” who claimed to be an expert on race because he works as a “scholar” at a conservative think tank. Speaking Wednesday, Reid got him to confess that he’s neither an expert in race nor in law, which is where the idea of critical race theory is generally taught.

Rufo claimed that Reid was attacking him on air, which she corrected, saying that she was doing nothing more than reading the quote from his own documents.

Reid began by asking at what point “critical race theory” was invented, and he didn’t know, saying sometime in the 1980s or 1990s. Reid cited the Harvard University paper in which it was first mentioned in 1981 by Professor Derrick Bell, who died in 2011.

She cited Rufo’s “documentary” on critical race theory that cites professors or professorial types who he admits are academics who he claims are replacing equality with equity, which is a conservative charge Reid said she’s been hearing since she was in high school. “To ending individual property rights and even to committing reverse genocide or calling for reverse genocide.”

Rufo said that it wasn’t true, which is when Reid said she would play the clip if Rufo allowed her to do it, but he wouldn’t. He said that the term is counter genocide, a genocide perpetrated in retaliation to another genocide.

Rufo claims in his talking points that the father of critical race theory was Ibram X. Kendi, who told Reid that he wasn’t a critical race theorist.

“I admire critical race theory but I don’t identify as a critical race theorist. I’m not a legal scholar, so I wasn’t trained on critical race theory,” Kendi said. “I’m a historian and Chris would know that if he actually read my work or understood that critical race theory is taught in law schools. I didn’t attend law school.”

Rufo began to complain that Reid was citing things and not letting him answer, but she explained she wanted to go through her list of disputes.

Rufo claimed that he wasn’t a political operative, but Reid rolled a video of Rufo speaking at the Claremont Institute on May 18 in which he called critical race theory a political “cudgel,” meaning a giant political weapon. He went on to supplement his point by quoting Barbara Applebaum, who he said was a critical race theorist. She’s, in fact, listed as being trained in philosophy and education and “her research is heavily influenced by feminist ethics, feminist philosophy, and critical race theory.”

He also quoted American author Robin DiAngelo who did her thesis on whiteness in racial dialogues. She also is an education professor, not a critical theorist, according to her website.

“There are these very pathetic and very angry graduate students who try to fight me on these highly technical haggle interpretations,” said Rufo. “I don’t have time for this. Like I don’t give a sh*t.”

Reid noted that there again explains that critical race theory isn’t something being taught in kindergarten, it’s a graduate-level conversation among academics.

His argument fell apart from there.

See the videos below:

 

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