This is the transcript for The Morning Brew, which aired August 21, 2018. The edited portion of the news segment can be found below.
US inmates stage nationwide prison labor strike over ‘modern slavery’ starting Today.
I was going to read the story about this strike, but instead I will be reading the letter below, followed by the 10 demands for prison reform, and finally the ways these prisoners will strike. They have been warned by wardens across the country that stiff penalties will be issued if they attempt it. There is an estimated 2.3 million prisoners in this nation, which makes up the largest prison population in the world. I can understand to a point why they are doing this because we do need prison reforms; not just another band-aid fix. At the same time, this so-called “modern slavery” happened because these people broke the law. If you don’t break the law, guess what? You don’t have to go to prison, funny how that works out. Anyway I will let you guys decide what to think about this.
A statement and update from Jailhouse Lawyers Speak on the upcoming prison strike.
Over the last several days, Jailhouse Lawyers Speak (JLS) has had numerous conversations. The JLS mailbox has been packed with correspondence from prisoners around the nation. As prisoners, it’s clear we are all on the same page. So are the prisoncrats overseeing the prison-industrial slave complex. Federal and state authorities are on high alert across the nation. Preemptive repression tactics have already been initiated to silence visible prisoners that have influence who have vocally supported the August 21st call. This includes those less-known figures to the public. Prisoners are reporting in a few states that wardens are openly making threats to prisoners of consequences if they participate in the nationwide strike. Even with the authorities threatening, prisoners are ready for action.
Why is this so important to us? Fundamentally, it’s a human rights issue. Prisoners understand they are being treated as animals. We know that our conditions are causing physical harm and deaths that could be avoided if prison policy makers actually gave a damn. Prisons in America are a war-zone. Every day prisoners are harmed due to conditions of confinement. For some of us it’s as if we are already dead. So what do we have to lose?
South Carolina is only a reflection of the issues facing other states and governmental buildings of confinement. This is a systematic problem born out of slavery that this nation must come to grips with and address. Our protest cry rallies around 10 national demands. We ask that even after September 9, you continue to lobby these demands that we are calling for a solution. We will continue to organize around these demands further into the future until they are met.
Do not expect to see major coverage of our strike on the mainstream media. Definitely do not expect any prison officials to give you accurate or updated information. It’s their jobs to make it all seem like a normal day of operations. The only time they will report an uprising is when it’s full-blown beyond their control. At that point they will label it a riot. Prisoners will have to sneak out updates. For those of you with these updates, please share with others.
Our collective message to prisoners, stop the violence against each other. Regardless of race, class or label, we are one. And yes, we are by our very interest a class. We support all prisoners. We support prisoners’ rights to self-defense, but we are promoting a line against senseless collective violence against each other.
Let this nationwide strike be a wake-up, prisoners will destroy the crops, we will not comply, we will not allow you to exploit our families’ hard-earned dollars anymore. Striking the match, let it go up in a blaze. We are humans! On behalf of the prisoners nationwide, we thank every supporter out there that’s making our voices heard through their actions of solidarity. Stay vigilant, we will need you more than ever during the strike.
Jailhouse Lawyers Speak
NATIONAL DEMANDS of the men and women in federal, immigration, and state prisons:
1. Immediate improvements to the conditions of prisons and prison policies that recognize the humanity of imprisoned men and women.
2. An immediate end to prison slavery. All persons imprisoned in any place of detention under United States jurisdiction must be paid the prevailing wage in their state or territory for their labor.
3. The Prison Litigation Reform Act must be rescinded, allowing imprisoned humans a proper channel to address grievances and violations of their rights.
4. The Truth in Sentencing Act and the Sentencing Reform Act must be rescinded so that imprisoned humans have a possibility of rehabilitation and parole. No human shall be sentenced to Death by Incarceration or serve any sentence without the possibility of parole.
5. An immediate end to the racial overcharging, over-sentencing, and parole denials of Black and brown humans. Black humans shall no longer be denied parole because the victim of the crime was white, which is a particular problem in southern states.
6. An immediate end to racist gang enhancement laws targeting Black and brown humans.
7. No imprisoned human shall be denied access to rehabilitation programs at their place of detention because of their label as a violent offender.
8. State prisons must be funded specifically to offer more rehabilitation services.
9. Pell grants must be reinstated in all US states and territories.
10. The voting rights of all confined citizens serving prison sentences, pretrial detainees, and so-called “ex-felons” must be counted. Representation is demanded. All voices count!
We all agree to spread this strike throughout the prisons of Ameri$$$a! From August 21st to September 9th, 2018, men and women in prisons across the nation will strike in the following manner:
Work Strikes: Prisoners will not report to assigned jobs. Each place of detention will determine how long its strike will last. Some of these strikes may translate into a local list of demands designed to improve conditions and reduce harm within the prison.
Sit-ins:In certain prisons, men and women will engage in peaceful sit-in protests.
Boycotts All spending should be halted. We ask those outside the walls not to make financial judgments for those inside.
Men and women on the inside will inform you if they are participating in this boycott. We support the call of Free Alabama Movement Campaign to “Redistribute the Pain” 2018 as Bennu Hannibal Ra-Sun, formerly known as Melvin Ray has laid out (with the exception of refusing visitation).
Hunger Strikes: Men and women shall refuse to eat.
Protesters topple Silent Sam Confederate statue at UNC
Protesters toppled the Silent Sam Confederate statue on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill on Monday night. The monument came down after 9:15 p.m. Monday. Earlier in the evening, protesters covered the statue with gray banners, erecting (Giggity) “an alternative monument” that said, in part, “For a world without white supremacy.” Okay, quick history lesson, I can understand why the lefties would try to make the Civil War to disappear. The progressive roots were actually planted in the Confederacy, shocking I know. They were the party of slavery back then as they are the party of slavery today. Instead of real chains, we have welfare and big government that act like chains today.
The gathering downtown on Franklin Street started as a demonstration in solidarity with the UNC graduate student who faces criminal and honor court charges for throwing red ink and blood on the Confederate statue in April, now faces a criminal charge of defacing a public statue and an honor court violation at the university. At the rally, protesters chanted her name. The defense that the statue was a bad guy doesn’t really work when you are damaging school property. Anyway, a skirmish broke out when someone threw a smoke bomb into the crowd. Police chased one protester and arrested another for resisting, delaying and obstructing an officer. The unidentified man who was arrested may also face another charge of wearing a mask to a rally. The crowd quickly took control of the area immediately around the statue as the police formed a perimeter around the protesters. They have vowed to sustain the pressure on the university to relocate the Confederate monument, but campus and UNC system officials insist state law prevents them from doing so. The rally started with the singing of the black national anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” Insert eye roll here. Then of course this peaceful protest resulted in the protesters knocking down the statue and stomping on it and stuff. Thus another protest by the left that involves violence. The mainstream media however will call them heroes.
A judge on Monday ordered Michigan’s state health director to stand trial on involuntary manslaughter charges in the deaths of two men linked to an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease in the Flint area, the highest ranking official to stand trial as a result of the scandal.
Legionnaires’ disease is a severe, often lethal, form of pneumonia. It’s caused by the bacterium Legionella pneumophila found in both potable and nonpotable water systems. Each year, an estimated 10,000 to 18,000 people are infected with the Legionella bacteria in the United States. It is not uncommon for patients with Legionnaires’ disease to be admitted to the intensive care unit. Some will suffer long-term impaired health-related quality of life.
Nick Lyon is accused of failing to issue a timely alert to the public about the outbreak. Judge David Goggins said deaths likely could have been prevented if the outbreak had been publicly known and keeping the public in the dark was “corrupt.” Some experts have blamed Legionnaires’ on the scandal over Flint’s water, which wasn’t properly treated when it was drawn from the Flint River in 2014 and 2015. Goggins found there’s probable cause for a trial. The legal standard isn’t as high as beyond a reasonable doubt. The state says at least 90 cases of Legionnaires’ occurred in Genesee County, including 12 deaths. Lyon denies wrongdoing. His lawyers say sending the case to trial will “dangerously chill” public employees. Oh stop it! He failed to do his job, nothing more, and if he had warned the public instead of playing politics, we wouldn’t have a death count now would me. Yes, I have taken into consideration that if someone tells you the water is not potable, some people will still go ahead and drink it. The Legionnaires’ investigation is part of a larger probe into how Flint’s water system became poisoned when the city used Flint River water for 18 months. The water wasn’t treated to reduce corrosion. As a result, lead leached from old pipes. By the way, they made the switch to using the Flint River to save money…
U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday that it is “very dangerous” for social media companies like Twitter and Facebook to silence voices on their services. Trump’s comments in an interview with Reuters come as the social media industry faces mounting scrutiny from Congress to police foreign propaganda. Trump previously criticized the social media industry on Aug. 18, in a series of tweets that unnamed companies were “totally discriminating against Republican/Conservative voices.” In the same post, Trump said “too many voices are being destroyed, some good & some bad.” Those tweets followed actions taken by Apple, Alphabet, YouTube and Facebook to remove some content posted by Infowars, a website run by conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. His own Twitter account was temporarily suspended on Aug. 15. “I won’t mention names but when they take certain people off of Twitter or Facebook and they’re making that decision, that is really a dangerous thing because that could be you tomorrow,” said Trump. We The People can do something about it, click the link in the chat, that will take you to the Internet Constitution. Arthur from Rhetorical Entertainment came up with this constitution as a way to protect free speech in this country. It is a living document and is open to suggestion and ideas. Follow us on Coffee Talk once a month for a Constitutional forum, and the changes, ideas and discussion about this all important topic. Share the link and spread the word.
President Trump on Monday questioned why Attorney General Jeff Sessions hasn’t fired Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr, pointing to Ohr’s connection to the “phony, dirty and discredited” dossier financed by Democrats during the 2016 campaign. You know Mr. President, that is an excellent question! “Will Bruce Ohr, whose family received big money for helping to create the phony, dirty and discredited Dossier, ever be fired from the Jeff Sessions “Justice” Department? A total joke!” Trump tweeted.
Ohr’s wife, Nellie, is a former contractor for Fusion GPS – the research company that worked with ex-British spy Chris Steele to compile the infamous dossier of unverified and salacious claims about Trump’s ties to Russia. Conservatives have accused Ohr — who was once former associate deputy attorney general and still works for the DOJ — of having a conflict of interest during the presidential campaign because of his wife’s work. Yet the Mainstream media thought nothing of it, because you know…#TrumpBashing. Trump has repeatedly criticized Sessions, his attorney general, for recusing himself from the Russia investigation. Trump has threatened to pull Ohr’s security clearance which by a way is a privilege and not a right CNN. The dossier, which was used by federal officials to justify the surveillance of a top Trump aide, Carter Page, was created by Fusion GPS and paid for by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee and the FBI. Fox News has reviewed a collection of Ohr’s emails, texts and handwritten notes that reveals that he was deeply connected to the dossier as well as its author. Ohr wrote that Steele was “very concerned (about) about [former FBI Director James] Comey’s firing — afraid they will be exposed.” The Ohr documents also shed more light on Steele’s activities before the presidential election. While Steele shopped the dossier to multiple media outlets, he also appeared to ask Ohr for help with a Russian oligarch — Oleg Deripaska — after rumors the U.S. might impose sanctions. Oopsy!
Animal crackers break out of their cages
After more than a century behind bars, the beasts on boxes of animal crackers are roaming free. Mondelez International, the parent company of Nabisco, has redesigned the packaging of its Barnum’s Animals crackers after relenting to pressure from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. PETA, which has been protesting the use of animals in circuses for more than 30 years, wrote a letter to Mondelez in the spring of 2016 calling for a redesign. Also PETA has killed more animals than most animal shelters, but yes PETA please bitch about a drawing of circus animals in a cage of freaking animal crackers! That should give you more credibility indeed. “Given the egregious cruelty inherent in circuses that use animals and the public’s swelling opposition to the exploitation of animals used for entertainment, we urge Nabisco to update its packaging in order to show animals who are free to roam in their natural habitats,” PETA said in its letter. The redesign of the boxes, now on U.S. store shelves, retains the familiar red and yellow coloring and prominent “Barnum’s Animals” lettering. But instead of showing the animals in cages — implying that they’re traveling in boxcars for the circus — the new boxes feature a zebra, elephant, lion, giraffe and gorilla wandering side-by-side in a grassland. The outline of acacia trees can be seen in the distance. “When PETA reached out about Barnum’s, we saw this as another great opportunity to continue to keep this brand modern and contemporary,” said Jason Levine, Mondelez’s chief marketing officer for North America, in a statement. PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman says she’s celebrating the box redesign for the cultural change it represents. “The new box for Barnum’s Animals crackers perfectly reflects that our society no longer tolerates the caging and chaining of wild animals for circus shows,” she said.
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