Articles Featured on indymedia.us for February 2010

March 2010 >> << January 2010

Feb 02 2010
United We Stand Celebration brought hundreds together to emphasize diversity and GLBT safety

On January 20th, over 300 people gathered at Babeville to show support for hate crime victims Lindsay Harmon, the 20 year old gay man who was attacked at the Galleria mall, and the victims of unreported hate crimes that take place in Buffalo annually. The Buffalo Gay Men's Chorus sang a very upbeat and cheery number to start the evening which carried on with a bit more serious tone. Petitions circulated before the event online and in paper form calling for a BPD GLBT hate crime liaison, more lighting on Allen between Franklin and Main, and a camera on the corner of Allen and Main. Mayor Byron Brown spoke at the even and promised those requests would all be taken care of, with a camera up and operational in the next two weeks. read more by Jenna Piasecki | RELATED: Take Back the Night GLBT March in Allentown | What's more effective: Bash Back! or conventional responses to anti-gay hate crimes?

Feb 03 2010
Forty Portlanders Join San Francisco Protest Against Obama Housing Practices

Forty activists and homeless people from Portland joined newly-formed WRAP (Western Regional Advocacy Project) protest in San Franciso for march down Market Street for housing rights and against 'crimes of status' with target of Nancy Pelosi's office. Organizers also helped with a picket in Ashland against US Bank over 66/67, and a forum on housing politics with JwJ/OA.

On January 20, 2010, the one year anniversary of Obama's Inauguration, hundreds of West Coast activists and poor people pooled their protesting energy in San Francisco and marched down Market Street in the rain to Nancy Pelosi's office, advocating for more housing funding and civil rights. WRAP, Western Regional Advocacy Project, with members from Sisters of the Road and Street Roots in Portland, endorsed by PSU Progressive Student Union, Tenant Rights Project and Transit Riders Union (among others) in Portland, and including groups from San Francisco and Los Angeles, like LA CAN -- organized this protest, with the theme "Housekeys Not Handcuffs." Read More | Photo from Wrap Blog | RELATED: Tax Fairness Protest @ US Bank in Ashland, OR | North, West, Point Breeze residents feel effects of gentrification

DC
Feb 04 2010
Funk the Warming storms PEPCO, Monsanto, Caterpiller

On Jan 2009, Funk the Warming, featuring DC SDS and Rising Tide DC, stormed the offices of PEPCO(aka PEPCOAL),Caterpiller, and Monsanto, to deliver "fossil eggs" about the size of soccer balls. Additional deliveries took place outside The US Chamber of Commerce, Shell and the building housing Xe(Blackwater) and Chevron. Read more & audio | video

Feb 05 2010
Alexis Hutchison, a Single Mother from Oakland, is Facing a Year in Military Prison

Alexis Hutchinson, a single mother from Oakland, CA, is facing up to a year in military prison for refusing to leave her son in Georgia foster care while being deployed to Afghanistan.

Fort Stewart, GA, Army officials announced four separate court martial charges against Specialist Alexis Hutchinson, the single mother of a one-year-old son who missed deployment in early November 2009 when her childcare plan fell through. Despite assurances by military public affairs officers that the Army would work with Spc. Hutchinson and her attorneys to resolve the matter administratively, rather than through the criminal process, charges of missing movement, AWOL, dereliction of duty, and insubordinate conduct were filed on January 13th. Spc. Hutchinson is a 21-year-old native of Oakland, CA, now facing over three years in prison, a dishonorable discharge, and the loss of custody of her infant. She has been assigned to Hunter Army Airfield near Savannah, GA, since February 2008.

Military objector support group Courage to Resist is raising funds for Hutchinson's defense and circulating a petition on its website to demand that charges be dropped. Read more | Previously: Seeking time to plan for son, Army mother is arrested

Feb 06 2010
Port Richmond Philadelphia Community Rallies Against Police Officer in Fatal Shooting

The community of Port Richmond has come together and rallied against police officer Frank Tepper after he killed Billy Panas Jr, this past November in Northeast Philadelphia. Port Richmond is in the part of Philadelphia adjacent to Fishtown and Kensington and is one of the more working class sections of the city. This community has mobilized against a police shooting where support for the police is usually very strong. Report by John Kalwaic

Feb 07 2010
War on the Poor. . . Continues in Fresno

A new Fresno ordinance would ban homeless people from standing on medians and asking for money. The Fresno City Council gave tentative approval to the measure at its meeting yesterday. Nonprofit community groups wanting to solicit money from median strips would have to get a permit. Homeless people and their advocates called the measure discriminatory. Photo: Al Williams and Carissa Phelps hold sign asking for help.

NYC
Feb 08 2010
Pan African Unity Triumph! Black New Yorkers Deliver for Haiti

A delegation from the December 12th Movement and the Friday Haiti Relief Coalition departed from Kennedy Airport destined for Haiti on Monday morning. In the wake of the tremendous earthquake that shook the island nation, Black people throughout New York came together to begin their contribution to the relief process.

Photo: the water was distributed directly to the people of Leogane

RELATED: I am still very traumatized from seeing that many dead bodies. Stories from Haiti. | AID to Haiti! Not armed intervention! | Scientologists in Haiti: A Firsthand Account | Focus on Israel: Harvesting Haitian Organs | VIDEO: Naomi Klein on Haiti | Haiti: Canada's New Imperialism? | Feb. 11: Benefit for Haiti

Feb 09 2010
Visiting A Modern Day Slave Plantation — An Interview With St Paul Professor Nancy A. Heitzeg

"Despite the supposedly benign tour at Angola, both students and I were horrified. There is a cavalier attitude, a blasé’ acceptance of capital punishment, mass incarceration and of course little critique of the class and race dynamics of the inmate population—80% of whom are black and nearly all of whom were poor, under-educated and dependent on a public defender at trial. There is passive acceptance and even sometimes celebration of Louisiana’s harsh sentences—it has the highest incarceration rate in the US—and of the fact that 90% of the inmates will die there and 80% will receive no visitors after 5 years."

Read more of the interview with St. Catherine Professor Nancy Heitzeg by Angola 3 News HERE

Feb 10 2010
Chicago journalist and anti-Olympics activist Martin Macias deported from Canada

From the newswire: "Martin Macias, Jr., a credentialed freelance journalist who contributes to Vocalo.org, the online and new media outlet for Chicago Public Radio, was turned back from the Canadian border late Saturday night.

"[Macias] was a lead organizer for No Games Chicago, the all-volunteer citizens group that opposed the Chicago bid for the 2016 Olympics. Martin was part of the No Games delegations that went to the International Olympic Committee's international headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland and then to Copenhagen, Denmark to deliver materials documenting the reasons why Chicago should not have been awarded the games. Martin was an invited guest a conference critical of the 2010 Vancouver games and the Olympic industry."

Quoting Macias: "I was in the passport line in Vancouver and I told them I was a radio journalist and a student a Malcolm X College. The agent put a big circle and x on my ticket. I was pulled out the line and questioned aggressively for two hours. They wanted to know what I was going to do in Vancouver, who i was meeting with, who organized the conference and what they looked like. They took all my contact information and business cards of journalists and other people I was to connect with while in Vancouver." When Macias demanded to know what his rights were, he was told: "You don't have any." Read more

Additional Coverage: Vancouver Media Co-op: Anti-Olympics organizer and journalist denied entry to Canada | No Games Chicago | Portland Indymedia | Democracy Now!: Canada Blocks Olympic Critic from Entering Country | Twin Cities IMC: Suppression of Independent Journalists for Widely Opposed 2010 Olympics | Rochester IMC Volunteer Detained at Canadian Border | All out against the 2010 Winter Olympic Games – Why the resistance? | 2010.mediacoop.ca

Past Indymedia Coverage on No Games Chicago: Chicago Opposition to 2016 Olympics Bid Ramps Up | Chicago Rallies Against 2016 Olympics with IOC Vote Looming | Chicago Public and Community Organizations Relieved by Lost Olympic Bid | From The Trenches coverage of April 2 IOC rally in Chicago | Chicago Independent Television feature on No Games Chicago

NYC
Feb 11 2010
The Right To A Fair Defense Cannot Be Controversial: The Case of Fahad Hashmi

We must consider cases such as Fahad Hashmi's, which illustrates the overreaching powers that have come to characterize the Federal Government, the intelligence community, and the American justice system through the War on Terror. Read More by Udai Malhotra | Image from freefahad.com.

RELATED: Aafia Siddiqui: Victimized by American Injustice | The Powerful Testimony of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui

Feb 12 2010
Decolonizing, Destroying Borders and Attacking Infrastructure. What side are you on?

solidaridad On January 16, Diné, O’odham and Autonomous/Anti-authoritarian (DO@) people answered a call-out from the O’odham Solidarity Across Borders Collective and Phoenix Class War Council to form the DO@ Block.

The bloc, consisting of anarchists and Indigenous people, converged on occupied Akimel O’odham Pi-Posh land (Phoenix) to take part in what was a larger march against Maricopa County, AZ, Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Arpaio is well known for his racist border politics and strict prison regulations. However this time people were confronting his repression on those that take situations into their own hands and defiantly cross the border without the permission of others.

DC
Feb 13 2010
Happy 10th Ann of Anti-Globalization Movement: DC To Pay Another Settlement for Illegal Mass Arrests on April 15, 2000

The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund is pleased to announce that the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has granted preliminary approval to the class action settlement in Becker, et al. v. District of Columbia, et al., relating to the April 15, 2000 mass arrest of nearly 700 people in Washington, D.C.

This sets in motion the process for class members to receive up to $18,000 each in compensation for their claims. This is the largest class action settlement of protester claims in U.S. history.

This historic victory is the consequence of nearly ten years of hard-fought litigation by PCJF attorneys. Read More | beckersettlement.com | Dec09 Coverage

NYC
Feb 14 2010
50 Protest Human Rights Violator & Israeli Settlement Builder Leviev in New York

Protesters Declare "A Diamond is Forever, but Apartheid Has to End" on Valentine's Day

Fifty human rights activists performed for Valentine's Day shoppers compelling them to boycott the Israeli diamond and settlement mogul Lev Leviev outside his store on Madison Avenue. The New York protest took place against the backdrop of an escalating arrest and harassment campaign by the Israeli military against Palestinian human rights organizations and protest and boycott activists from the West Bank villages where Leviev has built settlements.

The protest also included a dance performed to a parody of Beyonce's "Single Ladies," which told "All the customers":
Its Apartheid so you shouldn't put a ring on it
Occupation is a crime so put an end to it

Feb 15 2010
Union Janitors Take Over Minneapolis Skyways in Lunch Hour March

Hundreds of SEIU Local 26 members, their friends and families; and allies from labor and environmental organizations crowded downtown skyways today over the lunch hour in march to demand better fair pay, better healthcare and green cleaning practices. Local 26 janitors announced their intention to strike over disagreements with cleaning contractor companies on contract terms that the union says would be a huge step backwards for the workers.

“We are marching today for better healthcare and green cleaning to keep everyone at full time,” said Aschalew Alemu, a Local 26 steward who works in the Target building and has been with the union for almost seven years. “Affordable healthcare is very important for every family.” FEB 16 COVERAGE: Janitors Crash Banker Meeting, Slam Billions in Exec Bonuses

Feb 16 2010
Same Sex Couples Try to Apply for Marriage Licenses in San Mateo

On February 12th, same-sex couples requesting marriage licenses were joined by members of supporting organizations, guest speakers, and the Raging Grannies on the front steps of the San Mateo County Clerk's office. San Mateo County Deputy Assessor County Clerk-Recorder Theresa Rabe spoke out in support of full marriage rights. She said that the short period in which gays and lesbians were able to marry legally in California was sadly cut off by Proposition 8, which passed in November of 2008.

Feb 17 2010
Will Texas Soon Execute Another Innocent Man? The Case of Hank Skinner

Hank Skinner has been on death row for the last 15 years after being convicted of killing his life partner and her two adult disabled children. As the execution date quickly approaches, a number of questions still remain. Questions that could be easily cleared up with DNA testing that the state so far has refused to grant. Dr. Protess, a professor at Northwest University, shares more about the doubts and unanswered questions that linger and makes a direct plea to Governor Perry to save Skinner's life...

Texas continues to lead the nation in executions. But will the state earn the dubious distinction of executing five innocents in two decades? Hank Skinner’s fate lies in the hands of the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles, Gov. Perry and the U.S. Supreme Court. Read More | Petition to Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles

Feb 18 2010
Multi Media Report Back: News Conference On Killing of Aaron Campbell

Video, audio and photographs from the February 12, 2010 News Conference at the Portland Justice Center regarding the death of an unarmed Portland citizen at the hands of a police sniper.

A number of people stood forward and addressed the crowd and media, including JoAnn Bowman of Oregon Action, a speaker from the Urban League, former State Senator Avel Gordly, as well as representatives from a wide variety of religions, to name just a few. All voiced outrage and sorrow at the latest death of an unarmed citizen at the hands of our law enforcement officers. All were numb with grief, yet moved to action, on how to organize on local, state and federal levels to end this abuse of power. Many regarded the actions of the PPD as reprehensible, and demanded an independent investigation of the incident.

Audio of Speakers at the News Conference | Audio of Marva Davis, mother of Aaron Campbell | A Growing Concern

Feb 19 2010
Protest against John Yoo

Accused war criminal John Yoo spoke at the Federalist Society on Thursday. As one can tell by our signs, we're not in any doubt as to Yoo's guilt. There's a very strong case against Yoo that was brought by Jose Padilla, the fellow who spent several years in solitary confinement and suffered severe mental damage as a result. Photos by Bill Perry and Rich Gardner

DC
Feb 20 2010
Protestors occupy W.Va. mining office in response to mounting environmental violations

Pettus, W.Va.— Three occupied Massey Energy subsidiary Marfork Coal Company, Inc.’s main office this morning at eight. The protestors plan to present a citizen's arrest warrant and list of violations on the Marfork processing plant, Bee Tree Surface Mine and Brushy Fork sludge impoundment to company president Christopher Blanchard and Massey CEO Don Blankenship. Read More

Related Coverage: Legendary environmentalist arrested | Funds Needed for Combined $17,500 Cash-Only Bail | Massey and Marfork, the real eco-terrorists | Citizen’s Arrest Warrant issued to Marfork president for wanton endangerment, poisoning & assault of children near a school

Feb 21 2010
Dakota Activists Drop Banners to Challenge Proposed Funding for Fort Snelling

St. Paul, Minnesota, February 15 --- About 20 Dakota activists and supporters interrupted the Minnesota Historical Society’s "Rally for History" this afternoon at the state capitol.  Protesters are challenging the proposed funding for the renovation of Historic Fort Snelling, the site of a 19th century concentration camp where several hundred imprisoned Dakota people died of starvation and disease while 1,600 were held by US troops during the winter of 1862-1863.   Protesters say that by choosing to preserve the fort, Minnesotans are choosing to celebrate a symbol of violence against native people.

Activists with the Take Down The Fort Campaign unfurled several banners above and in front of the podium, and denounced Fort Snelling as a symbol of genocide while the speakers pressed on with their rally. More & Video

Related: Realizing Justice in Minisota: Imagination and Action at U of M 2/24

Feb 22 2010
Activist Coalition Tells Israel Ballet: Don’t Tiptoe Around Apartheid!

Troupe Associate Director Replies: “Nothing” Was There in 1948

February 20, 2010 – The Israel Ballet’s recent performance of Don Quixote was protested by a coalition of activists who sought to highlight the troupe’s role in the Israeli government’s attempt to whitewash its record of war crimes, violations of international law, and other atrocities through promotion of its country’s artistic and cultural workers. Read More | Video

More Coverage: Student Group Advocates Boycott of Ballet | Dancing, Singing New Yorkers protest, calling for boycott of Israel Ballet | Israel Ballet Runs into “ResisDance” in Brooklyn | Israel ballet interrupted in Burlington, VT | Free Speech Again Censored at University at Buffalo | Coming up: Peace and social justice groups to boycott the Israel Ballet performance at Montgomery College, MD on Friday, February 26th

Related: Hit Play "I Heart Hamas" Reframes Palestinian Identity

Feb 23 2010
Action Against Big Banks' Abusive Treatment of Customers

Animal Teeth Swallow Up Bank Cards at Bank of America and Wells Fargo

Four of the nation's biggest banks — Bank of America, Citibank, Chase and Wells Fargo — are ruining the American economy, say activists who are taking to the streets this month to urge bank customers to "break up that affair with your big bank." In the San Francisco Bay Area members of the Raging Grannies launched a culture jamming action at banks in three cities to give the message some "real teeth". READ MORE | RELATED: Janitors Protest Wells Fargo, Deluge Bankers with Monopoly Money and Toy Houses

Feb 24 2010
Uranium Mining Begins Near Grand Canyon

Thousands of Claims Threaten Public Health & Sacred Lands

Grand Canyon, AZ -- In defiance of legal challenges and a U.S. Government moratorium, Canadian company Denison Mines has started mining uranium on the north rim of the Grand Canyon. According to the Arizona Daily Sun the mine has been operating since December 2009.

The Grand Canyon is ancestral homeland to the Havasupai and Hualapai Nations. Although both Indigenous Nations have banned uranium mining on their reservations the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management may permit thousands of mining claims on surrounding lands. Read the full article here

Feb 25 2010
The People vs. Johannes Mehserle: Second Los Angeles Hearing

The latest in the ongoing trial of Johannes Mehserle, accused of shooting Oscar Grant in the back early New Year's Day 2009. Mehserle is the first police officer in California history to be tried for murder committed while on-duty. The Grant-Mehserle saga has sparked unrest and rebellion in the Bay Area, leading to the transfer of the trial to Los Angeles, where social justice advocates have placed immense pressure to ensure that the truth comes out and that the structures permitting this type of injustice are challenged.

The preliminary hearing on February 19, 2010 dealt with four main things: the reduction of bail, the removal of the Alameda DA, a ruling made by Judge Espinoa, and the schedule of the case. Full report: The People vs. Johannes Mehserle Second Los Angeles Hearing by Traci and Erinn

RELATED: Lessons from the Oscar Grant Tragedy – We Need to Get to Work by Kokayi Kwa Jitahidi

Feb 26 2010
Scott DeMuth’s Hearing Held Tuesday; Carrie Feldman Still in Segregation

[Tuesday] morning, over a dozen supporters from Minneapolis and the Quad Cities joined Scott DeMuth, indicted for conspiracy under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA), in the Federal Courthouse in Davenport for his arraignment for the new indictment that was issued last week. There was also a hearing on numerous discovery-related motions for his upcoming trial. Scott’s attorney, Michael Deutsch, argued that the prosecution has failed to produce the discovery that the defense is entitled to under the rules. Judge Shields took the arguments under advisement and is expected to issue a ruling within the next few days.

Related: Feldman moved to Muscatine County ... | ... And then to Dubuque County, IA | Updates from the Scott/Carrie Support Committee | Events: Political Repression and State Violence with Dhoruba Bin Wahad | Star Tribune: Stuck Three Months in Iowa Jail For Refusing To Testify

Past Feature: As DeMuth's Trial Date Nears, Federal Prosecutor on Crusade Against Anarchist Ideology

Feb 27 2010
Students and Education Workers Gear Up for March 4th

In anticipation for the statewide strike and day of action on March 4th activists have stepped up their actions with a renewed round of occupations in California. An occupation of a construction site at UC Berkeley resulted in a "mass riot" on Telegraph Avenue with hundreds of youth fighting the police. March 4th actions are planned throughout the Bay Area, California and beyond. In the East Bay strikes and walkouts are planned to converge in Downtown Oakland and an evening rally is planned for San Francisco.

Related: UCSC Banner Drop to Mobilize for March 4th | Banner dropped at Umass Boston | March 4 Crowdsourced News

Feb 28 2010
"Dignity Not Detention" Campaign Calls for Closure of South Texas Detention Centers

Friday, February 26th - Faith leaders, formerly detained immigrants, and human rights activists from across Texas today participated in an action and letter-delivery as part of a launch of a “Dignity, Not Detention” campaign. Activists gathered to call on Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to close two south Texas detention centers – the Willacy County “Tent City” detention center and the Port Isabel Detention Center (PIDC). Both facilities have been racked by allegations of human rights abuses, and PIDC has been the site of hunger strikes lead by detained immigrants over conditions of confinement and due process concerns.

March 2010 >> << January 2010