Monday, December 1, 2014

GOP Staffer Who Said Obama Girls Lacked Class Was Arrested As A Teen

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Lauten resigned as the the communications director for Rep. Stephen Fincher (R-TN) on Monday following backlash over a Facebook post about the Obama daughters' attire at the White House turkey pardon ceremony.
"Dear Sasha and Malia, I get you’re both in those awful teen years, but you’re a part of the First Family, try showing a little class," she wrote last week. "Act like being in the White House matters to you. Dress like you deserve respect, not a spot at a bar."

Monday, November 24, 2014

Obama Numbers
It’s rather bizarre that Republicans see all issues relating to black people (ie. Ferguson,Mo)  as being the President’s purview. Did we hold every white president accountable for every thing white people did? Um, no. That would have been absurd because being white is not a relationship. But for Republicans, everyone who is black is in some club and the President is the defacto leader of said club.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Cartoon Politics


Not really ‘new’ news, but a study done by researchers from New Jersey’s Fairleigh Dickinson University found that Fox News viewers are less informed about politics and current events than people who don’t watch any news at all.

Monday, November 17, 2014



Actually happening. The cartoon refers to gun shops in Ferguson, Missouri, reporting a spike of up to 300% in gun sales as residents await a decision on whether Darren Wilson, the white police officer who shot and killed unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, will face criminal charges. ..

"From 1945 to the end of the century, the United States attempted to overthrow more than 40 foreign governments, and to crush more than 30 populist-nationalist movements struggling against intolerable regimes. In the process, the US caused the end of life for several million people, and condemned many millions more to a life of agony and despair." .. (William Blum, ‘Rogue State’)

Cartoon Politics

Cartoon Politics

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Cartoon Politics


"Despite the fact that whites engage in drug offenses at a higher rate than African-Americans, African-Americans are incarcerated for drug offenses at a rate that is 10 times greater than that of whites.” .. the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Cartoon Politics

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Wealthy ‘Lucas Oil’ Founder’s Facebook Rant: ‘I’m Sick And Tired of Minorities Running Our Country’

A Facebook post written by Charlotte Lucas, the wife of Lucas Oil founder in Indianapolis, displays disparaging remarks about minorities. Mrs. Lucas is “sick and tired of minorities…”
Lucas claims minorities are “running the country,”  however, her oppressed white husband Forrest has a net worth of $300 million and their company brings in an annual revenue of $150 million, according to Addicting Info.


Lucas


Charlotte has had it, dammit! Won’t you please “fight back” for her gazillions of dollars?
Charlotte and her husband live in a sprawling 25,000 square foot home. To put that in perspective, I live in a 1,300 square foot home which has 3 bedrooms. So, the poor beaten down couple is really living in a modest home which is about 10 times the size of mine. I  live in one of those “minority” neighborhoods which according to her, is full of residents who are “running our country”.
The 33.6 acres where the Lucases reside, include an infinity swimming pool with a cascading waterfall and five buildings. Their estate has been the site of community benefits such as the Young Presidents Organization with guest speaker former President George W. Bush. Their home houses a 60-spot parking lot.
In total, they own five residences so they’re really just scraping by.
Charlotte whitesplained her Facebook post to RTV 6“I was very upset when I wrote that,” she said. “I will not elaborate other than to say that there are certain people who are trying to make the whole world eat what they want to eat and do what they want to do. I don’t think it’s any of their business what I put in my mouth. Thank you.”
Whatever that means.


Rep. Cummings: Blacks Worried Secret Service Is Racist



Congressman Elijah Cummings spoke on “Face the Nation” of his concerns about how African-Americans view the Secret Service now.
“Eighty-five percent of all African-Americans that come to me mention [this fear], and I don’t agree with it,” said Cummings, who was vocal about the need for former Director Julia Pierson to resign.
“We have information that this goes all the way back to the Bush administration, a lot of the problems that we’re talking about now. It’s just that they’re coming to light. So a lot of these things existed before President Obama.”
“The president’s people have told me that he feels very comfortable,” Cummings said. “He feels good about it, and most importantly the First Lady feels good about it.


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Autopsy report shows Louisiana police lied about suspect’s suicide by shooting self in back

An autopsy report released this week cast further doubt on a police officer’s claim that a suspect committed suicide by shooting himself while handcuffed in the back of a police cruiser, reports KATC.
According to the first page of the official autopsy report released by the Iberia Parish Coroner’s Office, Victor White III, 22, died from a gunshot to the chest, not in his back as reported by the arresting officer.
White was arrested by State Police in March of this year on narcotics charges and, according to authorities, was handcuffed, with his hands behind his back, in the back seat of a police cruiser when he refused to exit the vehicle for processing. According to the police report, the arresting officer went to get help and when he returned he found White critically wounded from a gunshot wound to his back.Police believe that White had somehow hidden a gun in the backseat of the cruiser and committed suicide by shooting himself. White died shortly after, with police stating there were no surveillance cameras in that area of the parking lot where the car was parked.Questions were immediately raised as to how White could have smuggled a gun into the cruiser and then managed to shoot himself in the back when left alone.According to the autopsy report, the bullet entered White’s chest, perforated his left lung and heart before exiting his armpit area and lacerating his upper arm.   The report still lists his death as a suicide.Admitting that the case is still being investigated, State Police Master Trooper Brooks David said that state troopers originally did believe the gunshot entry wound was in White’s back.No explanation was given for how White could have shot himself in the chest with his hands cuffed behind him.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Klan heading to Ferguson to ‘guard white businesses,’ back shooting of ‘n*gger criminal’

kkk
Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members from three different states are reportedly traveling to Ohio to hold a two-day fundraiser for the officer who shot unarmed teen Michael Brown, and to “guard white businesses.”The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) first reported last week that that the New Empire Knights of the Ku Klux Klan had begun raising money in support of the Ferguson police officer who killed Brown.
On Friday, the New Empire Knights announced that it would be holding a fundraiser on August 23-24 in Sullivan, about 60 miles from Ferguson.“With the police state in Ferguson, we will be holding our fundraiser in Sullivan City, MO,” the announcement said. “Donations of $10 and up. All money will go to the cop who did his job against the negro criminal.”New Empire Knights Imperial Wizard Charles Murray said in the comments section of the group’s website that the event was “being attended by 3 different Klan fractions.”And to anyone thinking of trying to get in the way, Murray warned, “we have guns (and more).” “We are raising money for a cop who shot a n*gger criminal,” he explained.
In a statement on Monday, Sullivan Mayor Thomas Leasor said that the city had seen reports about the KKK’s plans.
“City elected officials nor City staff is aware of the specific location for the gathering or have any details regarding the event,” the statement said. “On behalf of the City of Sullivan elected officials and City staff I want to emphasize that we have not, or will not, endorse or condone any activity based on hatred, more specifically any activity based on hatred towards any ethnicity.”
Murray, whose group is based in Abbeville, SC, clarified to Sullivan Independent News that the event being held next weekend should not be considered a “rally.”
”We are not holding a rally. We are having a fundraiser,” Murray said. ” Members of ours have been selling items online also. All funds are going to [the officer].”
On Monday, the New Empire Knights issued a statement about plans to “guard white businesses near Ferguson.”
“With blacks out of control, we have our Missouri Realm going to areas near Ferguson,” the statement said. “We can’t have blacks robbing and murdering innocent whites. I am on my way down along with members from three different states and members from the Southern Mountain Knights.”

Sunday, August 3, 2014

and on that subject, the U.N. has previously accused Israeli forces of using Palestinian children as human shields .. (article here) .. and  .. (more here)

and on that subject, the U.N. has previously accused Israeli forces of using Palestinian children as human shields ..

Cartoon Politics

"Congress is so strange. A man gets up to speak and says nothing. Nobody listens, and then everybody disagrees." .. (Boris Marshalov)
"Congress is so strange. A man gets up to speak and says nothing. Nobody listens, and then everybody disagrees." .. (Boris Marshalov)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

A PIECE OF NEGRO LEAGUE HISTORY IS DECAYING IN NEW JERSEY



July 24, 2014 Patrick Kearns

Without the proper context, Hinchliffe Stadium is nothing more than cracked earth and rotting wood. The former ballpark squats out on the bluffs of the great Paterson Falls in Paterson, New Jersey, a relic you can miss unless you're looking for it. I wasn't aware of it's existence until the first time I made that trip as an adult to the Paterson Falls, and even then, I only happened upon it by accident. I remember wandering inside the fortifications of the great structure and coming across a few older men stood in the center of the field, chain-smoking and remembering their high school days, when they played there.
Another time, on a more purposeful visit, three friends and I parked outside it, crawled through a hole in the fence, and stared up at the industrial ruin, imagining history, spinning pictures of the past. There was no one else there except for the wildlife who have made the place their home since 1997, when the stadium was abandoned after years of decay.
Playing baseball doesn't make you a better person. Read more.
I climbed the creaky stairs, devoured by years of termites, as if ascending a mountain. The summit, and my grand prize, was a battered old broadcast booth that looked as if the years had taken their toll. The inside looked about how you'd expect a place that's been all but forgotten to look.
For the next hour or so my friends and I tossed around an old baseball we found and used a tree branch as a bat. We took long breaks to sit in the bleachers—when the stadium was built, in those pre-luxury box days, all the seats were bleachers—just imagining the crowds that packed the stadium.
The park was home, from 1933-37 and from 1939-45, to the New York Black Yankees, and often played host to some of the great Negro League superstars, including Larry Doby, a future Hall of Famer who played high school ball at Hinchliffe Stadium. Doby, a seven-time All-Star who got his start with the Cleveland Indians, was the first black man to play in the American League and was the second to play Major League Baseball, after Jackie Robinson. Students from Paterson's Eastside High School also used the field, taking on their rivals from the Paterson Central in an annual Thanksgiving game.
It's hard to understand why for so long a tremendous piece of history like Hinchliffe Stadium didn't get the historical attention it deserved. I grew up in neighboring Glen Rock, a mere 15-minute drive from the stadium. When we were 15, my friends and I would get someone to drive us down the road and play "hey mister" until someone bought us beer. That was about as far as my exploration of Paterson went. It was poorer than my town, mysterious, damaged, off-limits.
But I grew up in privilege. My public high school was highly ranked and I had everything I wanted. My parents gave me a car when I was 17, I had a cell phone in high school, and I was given money for new clothes. The problems in Glen Rock were things like teen drinking and how to shelter kids from reading historical fiction that was a little too "real."
Paterson had bigger problems in those days, and still does. The city has been pegged as the gateway to Northern New Jersey's white suburban heroin problem, and with that drug "epidemic" getting national attention, the cops have been cracking down on drug-related crimes—meaning the city is spending money on arresting and prosecuting minorities and not restoring Hinchcliffe.
Last year, however, the stadium got some recognition when it was designated a historic landmark by the National Park Service.
"Today marks a great day in Paterson's history," US Congressman Bill Pascrell, who played high school baseball at the stadium, said. "As one of the last remaining Negro League stadiums in our nation, this designation allows us to honor the many athletes, including Larry Doby, who proudly called this historic stadium home.
"It's had a great history, and you can't ever replace that history, ever," he continued. "We've come a long way since the days of institutionalized segregation, but we still have a long way to go. We can't forget where we came from if we want to keep moving forward. I say this to the Doby family: We are not going to forget, and we will always not only keep your dad in mind, but we keep your whole family and what you meant to our city."
Over the years, there have been attempts at putting together money to renovate the stadium, but it still sits in disrepair despite the efforts of groups like the Friends of Hinchliffe Stadium, a nonprofit dedicated to the preservation of the stadium. It won't be demolished, at least—thanks to a bill passed this week by Congress, the ballpark is going to become part of Great Falls National Historical Park, and thus safe from anyone who would want to tear it down and build something in its place.
Hopefully, the money can be raised to restore Hinchcliffe to an approximation of its past glory, or at least get it to a point where people can play baseball again there without using tree branches and old balls.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

CARTOON POLITICS

"Fox News is nothing if not impressive. No matter how harsh the criticism it endures, the network somehow always manages to prove itself even worse than we had previously imagined." .. (Eric Alterman)
"Fox News is nothing if not impressive. No matter how harsh the criticism it endures, the network somehow always manages to prove itself even worse than we had previously imagined." .. (Eric Alterman)

CARTOON POLITICS

(story here)

CARTOON POLITICS

CARTOON POLITICS

As well as unconditional diplomatic support the US gives Israel financial support of at least $3 billion of American taxpayers money every year, much of it for military use .. (video about US aid to Israel here)
As well as unconditional diplomatic support the US gives Israel financial support of at least $3 billion of American taxpayers money every year, much of it for military use ..

CARTOON POLITICS

As Mark Twain reputedly said .. “reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated” .. and the same is true of Obamacare, despite the increasingly desperate efforts of the Republican party .. (report of the latest skirmish here)
As Mark Twain reputedly said .. “reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated” .. and the same is true of Obamacare, despite the increasingly desperate efforts of the Republican party .

Because They Hate: Health Care Obstructionism and the Conservative Mind

TIM WISE July 23, 2014



 It’s because they hate. There is no other logical explanation. After all, it’s one thing to oppose a piece of legislation and fight to keep it from being passed because you honestly disagree with it as a matter of principle. Decent people can disagree on policy. But it’s quite another to celebrate like frat boys at a keg party upon hearing the news that millions of people may now lose their health care, or that their care may become so financially prohibitive as to bankrupt them. Yet that is what they are doing, and by they I mean pretty much the entirety of conservative America. Check out their Twitter spew, where you can see their nearly orgasmic delight at yesterday’s 2-1 decision by an appellate court panel to the effect that only persons enrolled in state level insurance exchanges can receive federal subsidies for coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Since most states — especially those with conservative political leadership — have refused to establish exchanges, thereby forcing residents to turn to the federal version, the ruling (were it to stand) would mean that millions of Americans may no longer be able to access care under the law. Decent human beings, irrespective of their take on a matter of policy, do not celebrate at the news that millions of peoples’ lives could now be made harder. Decent human beings do not cheer and gloat at the news that millions of children could now go without care, or that millions of people may once again be forced to choose between health insurance they really can’t afford, or paying a light bill, or buying groceries, or paying rent. Decent human beings don’t put such a premium on political victories that they would purposely seek to harm people, deliberately make them worse off, intentionally leave them adrift with no real recourse to obtain care, possibly causing them, in many cases, to quite literally die. But conservatives in America do all of these things. Because they hate. There is no other logical explanation.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Georgia cop pulls gun on black children because building a tree house is ‘hazardous’

Police in Georgia are investigating reports that officers pulled a gun on African-American children who were building a tree house in their neighborhood. Omari Grant, 11, told WSB-TV that he and several friends were behind his home constructing the tree fort when a neighbor called 911 with concerns’ about the children’s safety. “There were falling hazards, tripping hazards, all types of hazards, so No. 1 was concern for the children and concern for the environment,” Edgar Dillard, whose wife made the 911 call, explained. And the Henry County police officers who showed up took the call so seriously that they were prepared to use deadly force. “I guess the release of tension was like, ‘Mom, he had a gun in my face, Mommy. Mommy, he had a gun in my face,’” Omari’s mother, Janice Baptiste, said. “So my son was of course traumatized by that.” Omari recalled what happened: “I was thinking that I don’t want to be shot today, so I just listened to what they said.” After using foul language, the officer ordered the children to get on the ground, Omari said. “I learned that they’re supposed to help you not make you feel scared to even come outside,” the 11-year-old explained. Henry County Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Joey Smith said that the department began investigating after Omari’s mother filed a complaint about excessive use of force. “If it was justified then we’ll deal with it, if it wasn’t we’ll address it as well,” Smith insisted. Watch the video below from WSB-TV, broadcast April 1, 2014.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Tax-Hating States Totally Fine With Taxing The Poor

As everyone knows, Southern politicians despise taxes more than just about anything -- except perhaps cornbread with sugar, or iced tea without. This established rule of the universe makes a new report by the Tax Foundation especially curious, at least at first look. The group, which typically takes an anti-tax stance, combined each state's sales tax rate with the average local sales tax rate, as of Jan. 1. The group found that the five states with the highest average combined state-local tax rates are mostly Southern-fried: Tennessee (9.45 percent), Arkansas (9.19 percent), Louisiana (8.89 percent), Washington (8.88 percent), and Oklahoma (8.72 percent). The combined sales tax rate is also high in New York (8.47 percent) and California (8.40). Four states, Oregon, Montana, New Hampshire and Delaware, collect no sales taxes at all. (Story continues after chart.) Not mentioned in the report are some of the factors that play into high sales tax rates. In the South, especially, property taxes are very low, and voters have historically rejected attempts to raise them. The region also has a history of handing out huge tax breaks to large manufactures in order to persuade them to move there. Alabama, for example, handed out a sweet package of $253 million in tax breaks and other incentives in order to woo a Mercedes-Benz plant to the state in 1993. A decade later, the plant reaped an additional $11.5 million in tax breaks for an expansion that didn't create any new jobs. Washington, number four on the list, passed a package of $9 billion in tax breaks in November in order to keep Boeing to locate production of its newest jet in Seattle. So with few other options available to pay for things like roads and schools, states have been forced to boost sales taxes, a form of revenue generation generally considered regressive -- meaning it hurts poor people the most. That's because the cost of food, clothing and other purchased goods tend to make up a higher percentage of a low income consumer's budget than for people with higher incomes. The poor are also less likely to own property, and thus less likely to benefit from lower tax rates for homes and land.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Dear MSNBC: If Scarborough's Running For President, Get Him Off The Air

Joe Scarborough was just speaking at the Northeast Republican Leadership Conference in New Hampshire. His name was included in the presidential straw poll until MSNBC talked the organizers into taking it off. At least theoretically, the media is supposed to serve as a watchdog. If Scarborough's going to be running around the country making noises about running, he needs to resign from his morning show. You can't leave a presidential candidate in charge of a highly-rated political show, where he has the power to make or break other candidates. Even in these amoral times, that stinks to high heaven. So MSNBC, you need to make him put up or shut up: The audience seems to like his speech, and there is a long line of people waiting to buy his book. But it's not exactly a "run, Joe, run" groundswell. A dozen attendees tell me they've heard no talk of a Scarborough candidacy and find the idea implausible on its face. Linda Paul, a homemaker from Bedford, New Hampshire, tells me she "won't even turn on MSNBC," and while she was impressed with Scarborough's remarks, she'd like to see a presidential candidate with a more recent record in elected office. Others were not on board with Scarborough's plea for party unity. "He hasn't always been kind to the Republican Party," says Kris Hammond, an attorney from Washington. "RINO stands for Republican In Name Only, and that means you're not really a Republican. We need to hold the line on what we believe in." "I watch his show," says former Representative Frank Guinta, who's running again for his old seat in New Hampshire. "Sometimes I'm yelling at the TV because he's not tough enough on Mika." Scarborough tells me that whether he plunges back into politics will depend on how the 2016 field takes shape. There are, he believes, two candidates who could plausibly capture the hearts of Wall Street and the GOP establishment: Chris Christie and Jeb Bush. Of Christie, he says, "If he comes out of all these investigations unscathed, I think Chris'll be a really strong candidate in 2016." Of Bush: "He was a great governor and I think he'd be a great candidate, but there's an awful lot of questions about whether Americans want another Bush." But if neither man runs, Scarborough believes there will be a void. "You take those guys off the playing field and suddenly it is wide open," he tells me. "Who else is there? It's the most open Republican field, my God, since Eisenhower was trying to figure out whether to run or not in 1952." And then, perhaps, just as it once implored a military commander and university president to be its champion, Scarborough's party will seek him out as its only hope. My time with Scarborough is ending, so I ask him whether being a member of the media has changed his outlook on politics. "It's a blessing and a curse," he says. "I've been debating three hours a day without a teleprompter ... so I'm thinking the debates may go okay if I ever decide to run! Nobody will have to put a packet on my back and an earpiece in my ear. I won't have to be shuffling nervously between notecards!" On the other hand, it could be a problem, he acknowledges, that "MSNBC, obviously, is seen as a liberal network .... But at the end of the day, it doesn't matter. People meet you. They judge you by who you are."

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Backlash Over Remarks About Shooting Liberals Ends Columnist's Radio Gig

It must be an election year, because there's no other reason for wingers who never do anything about their crazies to react to the backlash over Austin Ruse's statement that "liberal professors should just be taken out and shot." After Mr. Ruse made those remarks, he went back on the radio Thursday and ranted about how meaaaan RightWingWatch was to him.Ruse started today’s show by explaining that his remarks yesterday weren’t serious and that liberals should “turn to Wikipedia or the Internet, I don’t know if they know how to use the Internet.” “The pajama boys over at Right Wing Watch have their panties all in a twist about what I said, and I sometimes think that the left is really dumb, these are the low-information voters that make all of these mistakes when they get into the ballot box and all of these mistakes as they go through their lives and one of the reasons is because they are so dumb,” he said. Low information voters...oh, how they make me laugh. Ruse ranted on: “These people, these dumb leftists, are really smear merchants, they’re out to hurt, to harm, to isolate,” Ruse said. “They don’t like me, they don’t like you, they don’t like your children, they don’t like anything about you and they want you to basically shut up and go away…. It’s quite astounding what these folks are able to get away with and it’s also astounding how dumb they are.” And then he took to Twitter and ranted some more. He also spent some time on Facebook ranting, right after deactivated his Twitter account due to "leftist swarm." Mr. Ruse was not a happy camper. In an abrupt about-face, Ruse issued an apology on Friday, but it was too late. Of course, one might ask why he apologized via a statement to Talking Points Memo instead of directly to the Right Wing Watch folks, but I think we all know the answer to that. And the apology wasn't really to liberal professors, as you'll see: “I deeply regret and apologize for using the expression 'taken out and shot' on the Sandy Rios Show this week. It was not intended to be taken literally. I have dedicated my life and career to ending violence. I regret that these poorly chosen words are being used to attack my friends at American Family Radio and American Family Association.” See, professors! He's not a bit sorry that he might have offended you, but he really does feel badly about the backlash directed at American Family Association, which is well known for its consistency when it comes to offensive, gay-bashing, hating statements. AFA terminated his position as substitute radio host with a terse statement that “AFR condemns such comments, no matter who makes them.” AFA also allowed that "his comments were “un-Christian.” Gosh, ya think? I spent the last two days looking for that passage in the Bible about how Jesus commanded Christians to hunt down liberals and shoot them. Alas, no luck. So yeah, I'd agree with that. It's good that they acknowledged how odious his comments were. However, they're certainly not off the hook when they leave wingnuts like Brian Fischer out there with weak disclaimers about how he doesn't speak for them. Either they should clean the whole house, or not bother at all.

Arizona GOP congressional candidate: Slavery wasn't so bad, ‘kept business rolling’

An Arizona Republican who is running to represent the state’s 2nd District in Congress wrote on Facebook that the institution of slavery wasn’t really so hard on slaves and was actually good for the economy. According to the Root’s Keli Goff, Arizona congressional hopeful Jim Brown was trying to make a statement about federal spending and the nature of “entitlements” when he veered off course into racially offensive territory. “Back in the day of slavery, slaves were kept in slavery by denying them education and opportunity while providing them with their basic needs,” wrote Brown. “Not by beating them and starving them,” he said, adding “Although there were isolated cases, of course.” “Basically slave owners took pretty good care of their slaves and livestock and this kept business rolling along,” he said. As Goff noted, “This flies in the face of all credible historical accounts.” Brown began his congressional run earlier this year, running to represent Arizona’s District 1, then abruptly switching to District 2. In both districts, he faced vulnerable Democratic opponents. In District 2, he would run against Democratic Rep. Ron Barber. First, however, he has to win the Republican primary in August. He apologized for the remarks and took down the Facebook post on Friday. “Some people read this to mean that I didn’t think slavery was that bad. I believe that slavery is worse than death — yesterday, today and tomorrow. I apologize to anyone I offended,” he wrote.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Louisiana: Free Speech Isn't For Liberals

How Republican of them! Refusing the ACA Medicaid expansion is somehow a 'fiscally sound' decision, but spending a lot of money on lawyers and lawsuits to squelch MoveOn's criticisms are perfectly fine. Nola.com: Louisiana is suing national left-leaning policy group MoveOn.org in federal court, saying it violated copyright law when it put up a billboard and commissioned video ads critical of Gov. Bobby Jindal that use the state's tourism logo and motto. Republican Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne has been locked in a pitched battle with the group for weeks, unsuccessfully calling for it to take down the billboard that is currently up on the I-10 coming into Baton Rouge from Port Allen. "We have invested millions of dollars in identifying the Louisiana: Pick Your Passion brand with all that is good about Louisiana. No group should be allowed to use the brand for its own purposes, especially if it is for partisan political posturing," Dardenne said in a statement announcing the suit. "MoveOn.org has every right to attack Gov. Jindal, the state's refusal to accept Medicaid or, for that matter, me personally. But they do not have the right to use our protected service mark, which is used solely for the purpose of promoting and marketing Louisiana. We own the mark and its use is under the direction of my office, not the Office of the Governor." Dardenne is protecting Louisiana's marketing investment, which they've spent "millions" on, but the people who live in Louisiana aren't even worth the millions they won't spend because the federal government covers the full cost for the first three years? As for 'trademark infringement', I'd like to remind Lt. Governor (who aspires to Governor) Jay Dardenne that the people of Louisiana paid for that and own it. And the people of this nation have decided free speech is something worth defending, and not just when the right wing decides it's ok. Stay tuned.

Jon Stewart Trashes Fox News and Eric Bolling for Food Stamp Hypocrisy

Last week, Jon Stewart took Fox News Channel to task for their apparent fixation with food stamp recipients being able to purchase sea food with their benefits. The Five co-host Eric Bolling shot back at “dummy” Stewart for those remarks and criticized him for minimizing the problem of welfare fraud. On Thursday night, the feud continued as Stewart responded to Bolling’s “schooling.” Stewart said it was “reasonable” for Fox to be exposing government waste, but that was not why he was making fun of the network. “What we were ridiculing was the way you exaggerate the scope of public assistance abuse through random, often unprovable anecdotes,” Stewart said. Stewart hit Fox for creating the narrative that the poor are “just sh**ty people and those food stamps are just making them sh**tier.” He added that the network had found their “food stamp abuse bigfoot” in a surfer on welfare who has been featured on over six Fox programs. Stewart admitted that there is an estimated $3 billion in welfare fraud. The Daily Show Host then skewered Bolling for supporting what the Fox host called a $4 billion “pittance” in government subsidies directed to oil producers. “What I have learned today from my ‘teacher’ is that $3 billion dollars of taxpayer money is greater than $4 billion dollars of taxpayer money,” Stewart said. Stewart then played a series of clips of Fox hosts and contributors defending “job creators” who are also recipients of government subsidies. “So, what I’m getting from Fox is this,” Stewart concluded. “Exploiting government largess, while morally reprehensible and corrupting for an individual is a-ok for corporations.”

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Daily Show Proves America Does Not Have the ‘Best Health Care System in the World’

You hear it a lot from opponents of the Affordable Care Act: America already has the “best health care system in the world.” On last night’s episode of The Daily Show, Aasif Mandvi set out to dispel this myth once and for all by visiting this country’s version of a “Third World country.” Mandvi began by talking to NYSE Euronext Managing Director and occasional Fox Business guest Todd Wilemon, who argued that Obamacare will cause American health care to slip into “Third World status,” with less choice and longer lines for patients. To see what that might be like, Mandvi traveled with Remote Area Medical’s Stan Brock to a place he thought might be Africa or South America, but turned out to be Knoxville, Tennessee. There, he learned that the United States is actually ranked 37th in the world when it comes to health care, right between Costa Rica and Slovenia. And he got a first hand look at why that is. When Mandvi told Wilemon what he saw right here in America, he left the Obamacare opponent utterly speechless. All he could come up with was, “people do fall through the cracks.” “From what I saw, those are some pretty big fucking cracks,” Mandvi said. “So the worst case scenario for Obamacare is that it gets up to a place where we already are?” And as for Wilemon’s solution for those who can’t afford health care,” Mandvi summed it up this way: “If you’re poor, just stop being poor.”

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

There should be a White History Month

There should be a White History Month in America. That way we can teach all about the things White Americans have done in history, like: 1.Cherokee Trail of Tears 2.Japanese American internment 3.Philippine-American War 4.Jim Crow 5.The genocide of Native Americans 6.Transatlantic slave trade 7.The Middle Passage 8.The history of White American racism 9.Black Codes 10.Slave patrols 11.Ku Klux Klan 12.The War on Drugs 13.Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo 14.How white racism grew out of slavery and genocide 15.How whites still benefit from slavery and genocide 16.White anti-racism 17.The Southern strategy 18.The rape of black slave women 19.CORE 20.Madison Grant 21.The Indian Wars 22.Human zoos 23.How the Jews became white 24.White flight 25.Redlining 26.Proposition 14 27.Homestead Act 28.Tulsa Riots 29.Rosewood massacre 30.Tuskegee Experiment 31.Lynching 32.Hollywood stereotypes 33.Indian Appropriations Acts 34.Immigration Act of 1924 35.Sundown towns 36.Chinese Exclusion Act 37.Emmett Till 38.Vincent Chin 39.Islamophobia 40.Indian boarding schools 41.King Philip’s War 42.Bacon’s Rebellion 43.American slavery compared to Arab, Roman and Latin American slavery 44.History of the gun 45.History of the police 46.History of prisons 47.History of white suburbia 48.Lincoln’s racism and anti-racism 49.George Wallace 50.Fox News 51.Cointelpro 52.Real estate steering 53.School tracking 54.Mass incarceration of black men 55.Boston school busing riots (I did not list slavery, the abolitionist movement, the civil war, Reconstruction or Lincoln since they are, in fact, covered in history class, however poorly).

Dem State Rep: GOP Would Back Abortion if Black Men Impregnated Their Daughters

Alabama state legislator Alvin Holmes went off on pro-life Republicans during a debate on a strict anti-abortion bill, charging that they would change their tune on abortion immediately if their daughters were ever impregnated by black men. During the debate on the legislation, Holmes invoked race to make quite a strong point about abortion opponents. “99 percent of the all of the white people in here are going to raise their hand that they are against abortion. On the other hand, 99 percent of the whites that are sitting in here now, if their daughter got pregnant by a black man, they’re going to make their daughter have an abortion.” He added, “The truth sometimes hurts, I know it’s hard to say that!” Holmes also told the people he was addressing, “You will never admit it!” Holmes previously came under fire (and found himself in Sean Hannity‘s crosshairs) after calling Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas a “prolific Uncle Tom.”

Monday, March 3, 2014

Limbaugh: 12 Years a Slave Only Won Best Picture Because of ‘Magic Word’ in Title

Rush Limbaugh has not seen 12 Years a Slave, but he opined anyway on Monday that the only reason it won Best Picture at the Oscars was because it had the “magic word” of “slave” in the title. Limbaugh mocked the “self-satisfaction” of the awards ceremony and said that unlike at past Oscars, there wasn’t any “demonstrable political preaching” from anyone. But what Limbaugh did pick up on was Ellen DeGeneres‘ joke that either 12 Years a Slave would win the big prize or everyone’s a racist. And Limbaugh believed that to be more true than anyone realized. “If it was the only thing that movie won, it was gonna win best picture. There was no way. It didn’t matter if it was good or bad. I haven’t seen it. It was going to win. It had the magic word in the title. Slave.”

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The Daily Show’s Larry Wilmore ‘Unf*ck’s’ Fox Business’ Slavery Facts

As Black History Month draws to a close, The Daily Show examined how one Fox Business Network program spent their time discussing the “mythologization” of President Abraham Lincoln, and some reasons why he might be overrated. Vampire hunting and being “kinda racist” were not among the reasons, but rather, Lincoln’s decision not to let slavery “die a natural death.” Daily Show Senior Black Correspondent Larry Wilmore was on hand to respond. Host Jon Stewart played a few clips from the February 15 episode of Fox Business Network’s The Independents, in which Judge Andrew Napolitano and hosts Kennedy and Kmele Foster discuss Abraham Lincoln’s legacy, and all agree that Lincoln gets credit that he doesn’t deserve. First, Napolitano is shown explaining that in Lincoln’s day, “slavery was dying a natural death all over the western world,” but “instead of allowing it to die, or helping it to die by purchasing the slaves and then freeing them, which would’ve cost a lot less money, Lincoln set about on the most murderous war in American history.” Stewart pointed out that Lincoln did propose compensated emancipation, and was rejected, but then played a clip of Napolitano claiming that “it’s not even clear that slavery was the reason for secession, but largely the impetus for secession was tariffs.” Both ideas, Stewart pointed out, are popular in certain circles, but as Wilmore then pointed out, are unsupported by facts, logic, or moral decency. “These people think that Lincoln started the Civil War because the North was ready to kill to end slavery,” Wilmore said, “when the truth was the South was ready to die to keep slavery. You’re welcome, libertarians, I just unfucked your facts.” He also pointed out that even the idea of “compensated emancipation” still validates the idea of people as property. In fairness to The Independents, though, the full clip shows that the discussion also ranged to Lincoln’s civil liberties record, and atrocities committed by some in the Union army, which history ignores “because of the demonizing of the South, and it’s not even clear that slavery was the reason for secession, but largely the impetus for secession was tariffs that were being collected at Southern ports, and spent by Northern politicians.” Kennedy then wound things up by observing that Lincoln has defenders “who say that if you are so opposed to Abraham Lincoln, that, in itself, racist.” “Yes, people say that,” Napolitano replied, adding “I of course reject that. You have to be able to discuss every president with equanimity, without being tarred with a brush that won’t come off.”

Monday, February 24, 2014

Powerful GOP lobbyist drafts bill to ban gay athletes from playing in the NFL

Powerful GOP lobbyist drafts bill to ban gay athletes from playing in the NFL (via Raw Story )

Washington lobbyist Jack Burkman issued a statement saying that his firm, J M Burkman & Associates, is preparing legislation that would ban gay athletes from playing in the National Football League (NFL). In a statement, Burkman wrote that “We are…

Saturday, February 22, 2014

NFL Expected To Penalize Players Who Use N-Word On The Field

Cast of Broadway’s ‘Raisin in the Sun’ speak out against ‘Stand Your Ground’ law




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Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun first debuted on Broadway in 1959, and tackled taboo issues of the time, including racial segregation, class issues, and poverty in the inner city.The story is based upon a black family’s experiences in Chicago as they attempt to purchase a home and integrate into a white neighborhood.Today, A Raisin in the Sun is being revived on Broadway, helmed by director Kenny Leon, with a stellar cast including Oscar winner Denzel Washington, LaTanya Richardson, Anika Noni Rose, Sophie Okonedo, and Sean Patrick Thomas.In an interview with theGrio’s Chris Witherspoon, cast members from A Raisin in the Sun discussed the play’s relevancy some fifty years later, in light of hot-button issues like Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” self-defense law.“It’s shocking that’s still going on,” Thomas said. “These idiots in Florida that are just still so afraid of black people… that’s what this play is about. This family is about to move into a white neighborhood and they’re terrified… they’re afraid. They feel like whatever they say and whatever they do justifies their behavior because they’re afraid.”“It’s the same thing in Florida,” Thomas continued. “These people are irrationally afraid and they’re marching around with their guns and they think that gives them an excuse to just kill black boys.”“I think that a lot of us think that the play is no longer relevant…and then you realize that it’s quite relevant,” Rose added. “Not so much people being held out of a neighborhood because of race necessarily, although that still does happen and we still have children being killed just because of the way that they look and the color of their skin… but because of the economic situation that is going on.”Leon, who directed the 2004 Broadway revival of A Raisin in the Sun, says that Hansberry’s production is the “play that keeps on giving.”Leon says that the play will cause viewers to question the status of the American dream.“Where do we stand in terms of the future for young African-American men?” Leon asks.“When you see Travis in our play [played by Bryce Jenkins], you will see the man in him. You will see the Trayvon Martin in him.”“This particular time the play will resonate on a much deeper, richer level.”Previews for A Raisin in the Sun begin March 8 and the show officially opens April 3 for a 14-week limited engagement through June 15.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Jeopardy! Contestants Avoid Black History Like the Plague

jeopardy

There are people who say that Americans are not very astute on the topic of Black History. But there are some who say that those who complain are just persistent whiners and race baiters who will find a problem with any issue in front of them.

But what do you say when the so-called smartest people on the planet avoid Black History Month questions like they are the plague?  This is what happened on the show Jeopardy! during a college panel that they had on the show.  Of course the episode was all-white, which is what you’re usually going to get, but that doesn’t mean that the contestants can’t be enlightened on matters of race.

According to Jezebel.com, there were these categories: “International Cinema Showcase,” “Weather Verbs,” and “Kiwi Fauna.”  The sixth category was “African American History.”

The players did all they could to avoid Black History, leaving the questions over to the side like the five year old who refuses to eat his green beans.  What’s saddest about this episode, which you can view below, is that it explains why you hear so many incidents of college students doing disrespectful things to African Americans, like hanging nooses in their fraternity houses or having parties in blackface.   It happens because even the brightest college students don’t know the first things about black history, mainly because their campuses never force them to learn it.

If black people were lined up on a show and asked to give answers to questions about white history, they’d nail them in a heart beat.  Black cultural competency has been a matter of survival to people of color since we arrived on slave ships.  So, we know more about white people than whites know about themselves.  But when the situation is reversed, the answer is basically, “who gives a sh*t?”

The two students from Oklahoma and Texas A&M might have an excuse, since racism there is so bad that you think you’ve gotten into a time machine. But the third student was from The University of Chicago.   There’s no excuse for that and it doesn’t say good things about their racially-biased curriculum.

HLN’s Resident Zimmerman and Dunn Defender Once Called Oprah a ‘N*gger’


Remember Frank Taaffe? He’s the neighbor of George Zimmerman who spent much of last summer engaging in screaming matches with Nancy Grace on HLN. More recently, he joined Grace to offer up his defense of Michael Dunn, a man he doesn’t know, but believes was probably justified in shooting and killing a black teenager in Florida for playing loud music.

Before Taaffe was a talking head on HLN, he was probably best known for hosting “Standing Our Ground,” a white-supremacist podcast that took on such important issues as when it’s OK for white people to use the “n-word.” Liberal think tank Political Research Associates did the brave work of going through the podcast’s archives and came up with a clip of Taaffe repeatedly calling Oprah Winfrey a “n*gger.”

While his co-host did not think it was “appropriate” to use that word to describe the media mogul, Taaffe did not hesitate.

Yeah, she’s a n*gger because she keeps spewing out all that bullshit. She goes over to Switzerland and she says that the lady didn’t want to share a handbag because she thought that she couldn’t afford it, and she keeps just doing what she’s doing. She keeps stirring the pot. She keeps trying to promote her boy Obama. You know, Obama could do no wrong. You know, it’s birds of a feather, they flock together and stick together, and to me, she’s a n*gger. Oprah Winfrey’s a n*gger. She ain’t a n*gga, she’s a n*gger.”
So, now you know just a little bit more about the man that HLN has on its new programs, defending men who shoot and kill black teenagers.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Blitzer Gets Super-Detailed on Nazi Origins of Nugent’s ‘Subhuman Mongrel’ Obama Remark



Decorated (with poo) veteran (of phallic gun fantasies about other men) Ted Nugent caused a mild headache for former Governor Mitt Romney (R-MA) in 2012 over whether the Republican presidential candidate had sought and welcomed the controversial figure’s endorsement (yes and yes). Now, Texas gubernatorial candidate and Attorney General Greg Abbott (R-TX) faces a similar problem, as he campaigns with the man whom Wolf Blitzer just called out for using Nazi rhetoric.

A few weeks ago, Nugent launched his latest verbal volley at President Obama, calling him a “subhuman mongrel,” among other things. On Tuesday afternoon’s Wolf, the eponymous host discussed Abbott’s decision to campaign with Nugent, and went into great detail about the historical origins of the rocker’s comments about the President. Blitzer asked Wayne Slater of the Dallas Morning News if the Abbott campaign was aware of “the history of that phrase, subhuman mongrel?”

“That’s what the Nazis called Jews to justify the genocide of the Jewish community,” he continued. “They called them ‘untermenschen,’ subhuman mongrels, if you read some of the literature that the Nazis put out there, there is a long history of that specific phrase he used involving the President of the United States.”

Slater said he didn’t know, but that Nugent’s history of outrageous remarks is easy enough to check. “When you talk about something like the word ‘mongrel,’ with its racial and ethnic and historic ramifications, there is no doubt, it seems to me, that whether or not Abbott’s people recognized it instantly or not, it’s offensive, deeply offensive, to some voters, and not just Democratic voters, but other voters,” Slater said, adding “might that phrase be a kind of dog whistle, and code to exactly some of the voters that Greg Abbott wants?”

Blitzer then went deep on Nugent’s remarks, telling Slater, “As someone who has studied the Holocaust and studied World War II, I went back and we checked, and during World War II, Julius Streicher, this is what he would say about the Jews in justifying the genocide of the Jewish people: ‘The Jew is a mongrel. He has hereditary tendencies from Aryans, Asiatics, Negroes, and from the Mongolians. Evil always preponderates in the case of a mongrel.’”

“That’s the history of that phrase,” Blitzer continued. “And a) I wonder if Ted Nugent himself knows that history, the use of that phrase; but b) the Republicans in Texas who are welcoming him on the campaign trail and saying, ‘You know what, he’s using some outspoken language, that’s Ted Nugent’ — do they know what this means to so many people out there?”




Yesterday was President's Day here in America. It is a time for Americans to reflect on their presidents and how they brought us to this point in our history. From Washington to Obama, it has been an interesting ride to say the least.

We know for a fact that Jefferson, Clinton, and Kennedy, all stepped out on their wives while they were in office. Jefferson took it to the next level and fathered children with his black mistress.

Eight of our presidents died in office and four of them were assassinated. (Four out of forty three isn't a very good record.)We happen to know much more about the assassination of John Kennedy than we do about James A. Garfield, but then he was Camelot, and he was cut down in the prime of his life while America was coming into the television age, so you can't really blame us for that one.

Anyway, Americans, to my displeasure, all happen to think that Ronald Reagan was a great president. I believe that they are wrong.

Here is why:

Ronald Reagan tripled the national debt.

By cutting taxes for the wealthy he left the government with less money. We were 900 billion in debt when he came into office and 2.8 trillion in debt when he left. Do the math.

The Iran/Contra affair. If wingnuts believe that Benghazi(drink drink, gulp) is a scandal,they should read up on Iran/Contra a little bit sometime. Now that, my friends, was a scandal.

Under Ronald Reagan unemployment went from 7.5% to 11%. It eventually started falling again with the help of low paying jobs. This happened in part because large American companies started shipping jobs oversees and cutting out the American worker.

Ronald Reagan ignored the AIDS crisis, and, one could argue, contributed to the devastating crack epidemic that engulfed inner city America in the eighties. Sadly, it is a scourge that is still ravaging some African- American families today.

Ronald Reagan did more to destroy unions and the American middle class than any other President in history. (Google Reagan PATCO for an example.)

Ronald Reagan raided the Social Security Trust Fund and raised the social security tax on the middle class to fund his scheme.

Finally, Ronald Reagan and his government funded the Taliban and Afghan freedom fighters so that they could fight the "evil" Soviets.

What did we get for it? We got a tall cave dwelling dude with a beard who brought terror to the shores of the United States on September 11, 2001.

The next time you hear conservatives showering hero worship on Saint Ronald of Reagan; send them a link to this post. It won't change their minds about their conservative god, but you will feel better knowing that you have done your part to make your neighbors smarter.

Monday, February 17, 2014

CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield: ‘I’ve Had It’ with Death Threats for My Reporting on Dunn Trial





Ashleigh Banfield is not pleased with how Twitter users have treated her as of late. The CNN anchor railed against alleged death threats she and her family have received in response to her coverage of Michael Dunn‘s murder trial.

Dunn, the so-called “loud music” shooter, was convicted Saturday on three counts of second-degree attempted murder, but jurors deadlocked on whether he committed first-degree murder when his bullets struck and killed 17-year-old Jordan Davis.

Some TV anchors and legal analysts like Banfield have suggested race may have played a factor in the jury’s decision, leading to all kinds of criticism on social media. Though Banfield told her panelists on Monday that she intends to feature “all colors” in an upcoming discussion of the Dunn case, she lamented that Twitter has been hateful towards her and other commentators.

“Call it back, folks!” she implored. “Stop threatening to kill people on Twitter because you don’t like what they are saying! That’s the problem: If we can’t communicate, we are never going to know what the problem is. And this is a case that outlines it.”

Her co-panelists agreed that this trial has brought about a need for a longer conversation on “the laws, about race, about sensitivity, about tolerance, about ‘Stand Your Ground.’”

“And you know? No Twitter,” Banfield declared. “I have had it with people who are threatening me, and my kids, and my family over simply commenting on the law and criminal procedure and respecting juries. Because they do work hard. They work way harder than I do; and they work way harder than the rest of those people making those peanut gallery comments.”







US airman stands his ground in Florida, sentenced to 25 years

Michael Giles



A former U.S. airman is currently sitting in a Florida prison for what his supporters argue was a simple act of self-defense.

Just two years into a 25-year sentence, he joins a list of cases that have drawn national attention to the Sunshine State’s sentencing and gun laws. Encouraged by the activity, his family is hoping to stir up interest in his case and is currently petitioning Florida’s governor for clemency.

In the spring of 2010, 26-year-old Michael Giles was on active duty with the Unites States Air Force and stationed in Tampa. The married father of three had recently finished two tours in the Middle East and was looking forward to a career in the military, says his family. One night in February, a friend invited Giles to party at a Tallahassee nightclub. Shorty after arriving, a fight broke out among members of fraternities from nearby Florida A&M University.

According to court documents, an argument quickly escalated into a brawl involving 30 to 40 young men.

Giles reportedly was not involved in the melee but, separated from his friends, went outside to the car where he had a gun, for which he had a concealed carry permit. Giles put the weapon in his pants pocket and searched the crowd for his friends. Suddenly, he says, someone from the crowd punched him. Knocked to the ground and in fear for his life, Giles says he pulled out the gun and fired one shot into the leg of his alleged attacker.

Three men were injured, wounded by bullet fragments. Giles was immediately arrested and charged with second-degree attempted murder.

Aside from his having no criminal background, Giles’ supporters argue that he was merely defending himself from an unprovoked attack. In fact, when testifying in the case, the man who punched Giles, Courtney Thrower, admitted that the assault was random. “The first person I get to I’m going to hit,” he remembered thinking.

Other witnesses testified that Thrower, having heard of an attack on one of his fraternity brothers, was outside of the nightclub pacing with his fists clenched and, in the middle of the brawl, “leapfrogged” from the crowd to hit Giles. Despite all of that, according to the Florida state prosecutors, Giles had no right to use deadly force that night.

“The evidence is clear here that the act of pointing a gun into a group of people, even if you’re not specifically deciding to kill them, is a crime,” said Assistant State Attorney Jack Campbell in his closing statements during the trial. “There is no self-defense that is applicable based on the evidence that’s before the jury.”

The defense argued, however, that Giles was justified in using deadly force if he reasonably believed that such force was necessary to prevent “imminent death or great bodily harm” to himself.

“He doesn’t have to think he’s going to get killed, even though people looking in from the outside thought someone could get killed,” said defense attorney Don Pumphrey in his closing. “If the defendant was not engaged in an unlawful activity and was attacked in any place where he had a right to be, where he had a right to stand, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force.”

The jury disagreed however and Giles was ultimately convicted in August of 2011 of the lesser charge of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, a crime that comes with a mandatory minimum sentence of twenty years in the state of Florida. It is the same sentence Marissa Alexander received in her controversial case – a case recently awarded a new trial on appeal.

“10-20-Life” (Florida Statute 775.087) is a controversial Florida law under which Giles and Alexander were sentenced. It confers a minimum sentence of 10 years for a felony conviction where a firearm is merely brandishing. Firing the gun adds another 10 years – even if no one was hit, as was the case with Alexander. And, if someone is hit, the shooter necessarily faces 25 years to life in prison.

“Frankly, I think the 25-year mandatory is overly harsh on the facts of this case, but that’s what the law requires I do and I intend to follow the law,” said Judge James C. Hankinson when issuing Giles’ verdict

Given the facts of the case, Giles’ supporters – led in an effort by his parents – are hoping to have his case reevaluated by the state. His mother, Phyllis Giles, has created an online petition through Change.org asking Florida Governor Rick Scott for executive clemency for her son. She claims that not only do the facts of the case show that Michael was reasonably defending himself, but that his lawyer pressured him against taking the stand and evoking a “Stand-Your-Ground” defense.

Giles’ new defense attorney is currently in the process of filing a motion for post-conviction relief, claiming that he received ineffective assistance of counsel and, so far, the petition for clemency has received more than 56,000 signatures.

Florida State Senator Dwight Bullard (D-39) has also written a letter to Gov. Scott asking him to commute Giles’ sentence. According to a statement to theGrio from Bullard’s office, he has received no response from the governor.

“As of yet our office has heard nothing from Gov. Scott’s office. His office has time and again proven non-responsive on issues related to injustice,” Bullard said in a statement to theGrio. “He subsequently has turned a definitive blind eye to high[-]profile plights of injustice involving African-Americans. His lack of intervention on behalf of Marissa Alexander and lack of compassion for the killings of Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis have not gone unnoticed by Black Floridians – and all Floridians. So it comes as no surprise that he has been noticeably absent in the case of Michael Giles. Nonetheless I will continue pressing his office and others to take notice of cases like Mr. Giles, Ms. Alexander and others.”

In response, John Tupps, deputy press secretary for Governor Scott, told theGrio, “Florida is at a 42-year low in its crime rate, and Governor Scott works every day to ensure that Florida families are kept safe and have the opportunity to live the American Dream.”

Michael Giles supporters believe that’s not enough and are asking for direct action on his behalf. Ultimately, Phyllis Giles says she would like the state to take into consideration her son’s character and the extraordinary circumstance he was in the night of the shooting.

“Michael is a very caring person, never been in trouble, never been arrested. He’s a family man. We’re a bible-based family and both my husband and I are retired military,” she says. “We believe that we have raised a good man, so we don’t understand how the state of Florida could sentence him to 25 years in prison for defending himself. Michael is a good man. He is honest. He is hard working and, through all of this, he is our rock and confidence we need to keep fighting.”