In a draft addressing the use of military weaponry, The San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) has struck out a line stating, “Robots shall not be used as a Use of Force against any person,” according to the independent investigative news outlet Mission Local.
The line had initially been added to the draft by the city board of supervisor member Aaron Peskin. However, this newly revised draft may be voted on by the full board as early as November 29, the publication reported.
It would be the first such policy to allow extrajudicial killings by a police-operated robot or drone. Critics worry that the tech would allow police officers to use lethal force even though they can only view what’s happening on a TV monitor.
The SFPD currently has 12 functional, remote-controlled robots in its arsenal, though none have been used to attack anyone. They’re typically used to defuse bombs or provide surveillance in dangerous or inaccessible areas. However, tech experts worry that they could easily be weaponized and misused against marginalized communities.
SFPD spokesperson Office Robert Rueca said that the department “does not have any sort of specific plan in place” for lethal robots, and added, “The unusually dangerous or spontaneous operations where SFPD’s need to deliver deadly force via robot would be a rare and exceptional circumstance.”
However, Tifanei Moyer, a senior staff attorney at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area, criticized the revised bill.
“We are living in a dystopian future, where we debate whether the police may use robots to execute citizens without a trial, jury, or judge,” she wrote in an email to the aforementioned publication. “This is not normal. No legal professional or ordinary resident should carry on as if it is normal.”
The international civil rights group Human Rights Watch, the robot creators of Boston Dynamics, and other civil rights groups have written pleas asking the government not to approve the development or deployment of lethal robots.
At a United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons last year, the U.S, the UK, and Russia — three countries developing lethal robot tech — objected to a consensus governing the use of such bots.
The SFPD’s draft has also been criticized for allegedly excluding military-style assault rifles from a state audit requiring police departments to report their arsenal and its use against civilians.
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Army leader investigated for defending female soldiers against Tucker Carlson’s insults
An Army investigation criticized the Army’s top enlisted leader for using Twitter to defend female soldiers after Fox News host Tucker Carlson said they were weakening the military.
The investigation’s outcome has at least one Army general worried that “The Army has gone full MAGA,” a reference to former President Donald Trump’s campaign slogan, Make America Great Again.
In March 2021, Maj. Gen. Patrick Donahoe defended female soldiers after Carlson criticized new military policies providing maternity uniforms, “making it easier for women to pump breast milk on duty, and relaxing grooming standards to allow them to have ponytails and braids,” Insider reported.
In a segment that month, Carlson said, “While China’s military becomes more masculine as it assembles the world’s largest Navy, our military needs to become, as Joe Biden says, more feminine — whatever feminine means anymore, since men and women no longer exist.”
The statement likely referred to comments that President Joe Biden said referencing women in key military positions. Biden never said the military need to become “more feminine.”
In response to Carlson’s comment, Donahoe published a video on Twitter of him honoring a female officer. Donahoe wrote, “just as a reminder that Tucker Carlson couldn’t be more wrong.”
Donahoe’s response received “national media coverage” from Fox News personalities like Carlson and Laura Ingraham, as well as RepublicWorld.com and OpIndia.com, two right-wing Indian news outlets, Task and Purpose reported.
“While potentially admirable,” the Inspector General report said of Donahoe’s response to Carlson, “his post brought a measurable amount of negative publicity to the Army, enough that [the Office of the Chief of Public Affairs] warned [the Secretary of the Army] of the fallout…. [His tweets] exhibited poor judgment… [and the] subsequent media coverage drew national attention … and it cast the Army in a negative light.”
An Army general who anonymously spoke to Military.com to avoid retaliation said, “Why would any women want to serve now? The Army gave a hunting permit to radical partisans. … The Army has gone full MAGA.”
Far-Right Texas Republican Platform Calls for State to Secede From U.S.
The Texas state Republican Party’s 2022 platform is not only hideously anti-LGBTQ, it also calls for the state to hold a referendum in 2023 on a possible secession from the United States.
A document from the party’s Platforms and Resolutions committee developed during its recent state conference in Houston, revealed the party’s intention to hold the secession vote.
In a section on state sovereignty, the party says the federal government has “impaired” Texas’ right to locally self-govern. The section says any federal laws that infringe upon states’ rights should “be ignored, opposed, refused, and nullified.”
“Texas retains the right to secede from the United States, and the Texas Legislature should be called upon to pass a referendum consistent thereto,” the document adds. The vote will let state residents “determine whether or not the State of Texas should reassert its status as an independent nation.”
The call for “sovereignty” echoes claims made by far-right activists nationwide who claim that they shouldn’t be subject to taxation or other laws.
Just because the item appears on the party platform doesn’t necessarily mean that legislators will act on it. The last time a state seceded from the U.S., it led to a four-year-long Civil War.
The state’s platform also referred to homosexuality as “abnormal” and said that President Joe Biden didn’t legitimately win the 2020 presidential election. As such, the platform illustrates just how much the party has been transformed by the party’s far-right wing.
‘Why Broadcast Your Ignorance?’: Nikki Haley Slammed for Claiming ‘Kids Don’t See Color’ After Saying She Was Bullied
2024 GOP presidential hopeful Nikki Haley is once again under fire. Once seen by some as a stalwart who held to her beliefs regardless of political consequence, the former South Carolina governor and former Trump UN Ambassador has flip-flopped on nearly every issue she has weighed in on at least since leaving the administration, while choosing to speak out on the most fleeting issues the GOP is focused on.
“Critical race theory is harmful to a child’s education,” Haley tweeted, complete with video of her talking to far right commentator Dennis Prager, who insists America is not racist. He’s also decried not being able to use the “n” word anymore.
After Prager calls the 1619 Project a “lie,” Haley says “kids should not be taught that they are racist,” which is not what critical race theory does.
“They don’t see color. They don’t see gender. They don’t see anything, they’re just kids,” Haley insists.
But as Daily Beast editor Justin Baragona notes, last year Haley talked about the discrimination and bullying she faced because she is of Indian descent.
“In much of the Democratic Party, it’s now fashionable to say that America is racist. That is a lie. America is not a racist country,” Haley said at the 2020 RNC, as NBC News reported.
“I was a Brown girl, in a Black and white world. We faced discrimination and hardship,” she added.
“I grew up in a small town where we were the only Indian family, and I was bullied because they didn’t know if I was black or if I was white,” she said. “All I knew was I was Indian. I was brown; and I was bullied because I wouldn’t take a side. … So I told my parents and my parents talked to the teachers, and we ended up educating the class.”
Haley has also described herself as “white” on a voter registration form, as Mother Jones reported in 2011.
She is getting scorched on social media.
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) May 4, 2021
This is what I mean. People who are capable of making 180 degree turns whenever and however it suits their personal ambitions are very dangerous people. That shows a lack of any real internalized value system https://t.co/p3nBDlBp42
— DEFUND & ABOLISH POLICE, REFUND OUR COMMUNITIES (@BreeNewsome) May 5, 2021
Also, I thought the word literally meant in a literal manner or exact. Please cite the critical race theory text that tells white children they’re racist. Lastly, the 1619 Project is journalism, CRT is is a legal theory, which you probably didn’t know since you haven’t read.
— Ida Bae Wells (@nhannahjones) May 4, 2021
Dennis is also real mad that he can’t say the n-word.https://t.co/D27AI110rw
— The Next Day (@incompetusrex) May 5, 2021
Wait… the “expert”, this melting cumquat you’re talking to, is the Prager guy????? Amazing. Thanks for the laugh.
— Dave Zirin (@EdgeofSports) May 4, 2021
You don’t even know what “critical race theory” is. You just want to deny knowledge of the country’s foundational sins– sins that we can see perpetuated every day centuries later and that you literally don’t want us to learn from.
— Scott Tobias (@scott_tobias) May 4, 2021
You’ve literally read nothing on the subject. Why broadcast your ignorance?
— Dave Zirin (@EdgeofSports) May 4, 2021
Schools aren’t teaching kids they are racist. Schools are teaching kids the history of the United States, which unfortunately includes racism, slavery, segregation and intolerance towards non-whites and non-Christians.
— Edw. A. Havens III (@havens_iii) May 4, 2021
ARE YOU KIDDING?! I went to a predominately white and considerably “friendly” public school and was called a “terrorist,” a “towel head,” and even a “sand n*****” – the few black students had it worse. Some kids ARE RACIST bc they’re not taught better, and to deny that is naive. https://t.co/e3sI6Hjohy
— Puneet✨ (@Peeziedoesitt) May 5, 2021
Nonstop, vicious lying is all there is left.
This person has presidential ambitions, too. https://t.co/1QHGPy7ETw
— John Stoehr’s Editorial Board (@johnastoehr) May 4, 2021
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