Democracy Now!
Dr. Harry Edwards on the Injustice of Brain Injuries & CTE as NFL Rosters Become Predominantly Black
Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:56:11 -0400
Amid increasing concern over chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a degenerative brain disease linked to repeated blows to the head, a recent study of the brains of 111 deceased NFL players found all but one were found to have CTE. We speak with Dr. Harry Edwards, sociologist, author and sports activist, who says a consequence of CTE that is largely overlooked is the lack of alternative job opportunities for black players. We're also joined by Donté Stallworth, sports commentator and former NFL player who spent 10 years in the league.
Dr. Harry Edwards: Nominate Football Player Colin Kaepernick for the Nobel Peace Prize
Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:48:26 -0400
As sports players join a growing movement of kneeling during the national anthem ahead of games to protest racial injustice, we get response from one of the advisers to the player who started it all, former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Dr. Harry Edwards, a longtime staff consultant with the San Francisco 49ers, says he hopes Kaepernick "will become a person of the year" and should be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Edwards is professor emeritus of sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, and author of "The Revolt of the Black Athlete," reissued this year for its 50th anniversary edition. He was the architect of the 1968 Olympic Project for Human Rights.
Former NFL Player Donté Stallworth: Don't Let Trump Hijack the Conversation on Racism & Violence
Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:38:58 -0400
At a campaign rally in Huntsville, Alabama, on Friday evening, Trump lashed out at players who have joined a growing protest movement started by former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick against racial injustice, kneeling during the national anthem ahead of games. We get response from former NFL player Donté Stallworth, who spent 10 years in the league and is now a sports commentator, who says, "We can't allow the president to hijack this conversation and make it all about him."
Take the Knee: Athletes Unite in Historic Protest Against Racism & Police Brutality, Defying Trump
Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:12:18 -0400
In the biggest display of athletic defiance in years, football teams across the nation protested President Donald Trump after he attacked the NFL, NBA and some of their most popular athletes for daring to draw attention to racism and police violence. We look at the unprecedented role of political activism among athletes under the Trump presidency and the politics of playing the national anthem at games. We speak with Dr. Harry Edwards, professor emeritus of sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, and the author of several books, including "The Revolt of the Black Athlete," reissued this year for its 50th anniversary edition. He was the architect of the 1968 Olympic Project for Human Rights and is a longtime staff consultant with the San Francisco 49ers. We're also joined by Dave Zirin, sports editor for The Nation magazine, who notes that playing the national anthem before games has a long and hallowed history that goes back to the days of "Jersey Shore" and Justin Bieber.
Headlines for September 25, 2017
Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:00:00 -0400
After Trump Attack, Sports Leagues Unite in Protest of Racism & Police Brutality, Puerto Rico: Thousands Evacuate Amid Fears of Dam Collapse After Maria, Mexico: Death Toll from Earthquake Tops 300 as 2 More Quakes Strike South, Trump Threatens North Korea; NK Foreign Minister Says Trump on "Suicide Mission", Trump Admin Issues New Order Expanding Travel Ban to Chad, North Korea & Venezuela, Republican Lawmakers Scramble as McCain Says He'll Oppose Healthcare Bill, Germany: Merkel Wins 4th Term; Right-Wing Party Wins 13% to Enter Parliament, Tensions Escalate One Week Ahead of Catalonia Independence Referendum, Iraqi Kurds Head to Polls for Kurdish Referendum Vote, U.S. Launches 6 Drone Strikes into Libya, Killing 17, Syrian-American Journalist & Her Mother, Syrian Opposition Activist, Assassinated in Turkey, France: Tens of Thousands Protest After Macron Signs Anti-Worker Laws, St. Louis: 22 Arrested Protesting Acquittal of Cop for Killing Anthony Lamar Smith, Howard University Students Disrupt FBI Director James Comey's Speech
Amid Tensions with North Korea, 51 Countries Sign Ban on Nuclear Weapons Despite U.S. Opposition
Fri, 22 Sep 2017 08:53:25 -0400
Amid tensions over North Korea's nuclear and missile tests, 51 countries have signed the world's first legally binding treaty banning nuclear weapons. It prohibits the development, testing and possession of nuclear weapons, as well as using or threatening to use these weapons. It was first adopted in July by 122 U.N. member states, despite heavy U.S. opposition. None of the nine countries that possess nuclear weapons signed the measure, including Russia, Britain, China, France, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel. We speak with Susi Snyder, nuclear disarmament program manager for the Netherlands-based group PAX and author of the report "Don't Bank on the Bomb."
"His Laughter was a Battle Cry": Thousands Celebrate Comedian & Human Rights Legend Dick Gregory
Fri, 22 Sep 2017 08:27:34 -0400
Thousands gathered Saturday to celebrate the life of legendary comedian and civil rights activist Dick Gregory, who passed away last month at the age of 84. We feature some of the voices of those who gathered to remember him, including Rev. William Barber, president and senior lecturer of Repairers of the Breach; Rep. Maxine Waters; and children of civil rights legends, such as Martin Luther King III; Reena Evers, daughter of Medgar Evers; and Ilyasah Shabazz, daughter of Malcolm X.
Amnesty International Reveals the Bomb That Killed 16 Civilians in Yemen Was Made in the U.S.A.
Fri, 22 Sep 2017 08:12:36 -0400
A major new investigation by Amnesty International reveals a bomb that killed 16 civilians in Yemen's capital last month was made in the U.S.A. Among the survivors was 5-year-old Buthaina, whose photograph went viral in the aftermath of the strike. She lost her entire family in the strike. Amnesty International’s arms expert analyzed remnants of the weapon and found clear markings that matched U.S.-made components used in laser-guided, air-dropped bombs. Coalition airstrikes continue to be the leading cause of child casualties, as well as overall civilian casualties. The latest finding by Amnesty comes as some European Union countries recently tabled a motion at the U.N. Human Rights Council calling for an independent inquiry into human rights abuses committed by all sides in the conflict. The U.N. high commissioner for human rights has called the humanitarian crisis in Yemen an "entirely man-made catastrophe." We speak with Raed Jarrar, the advocacy director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International USA.
Headlines for September 22, 2017
Fri, 22 Sep 2017 08:00:00 -0400
North Korea Threatens Pacific H-Bomb Test as U.S. Brings New Sanctions, Puerto Rico Under Curfew as Hurricane Maria Death Toll Rises to 32, Mexico: Earthquake Death Toll at 273 and Climbing, Iran Nuclear Deal Signatories Oppose U.S. Threatened Withdrawal, Iraq: Tens of Thousands Trapped in Hawija as U.S.-Backed Offensive Begins, Amnesty International: U.S.-Made Bomb Killed Yemeni Civilians, NYT: Trump Rolling Back Limits on Drone Strikes, Commando Raids, India: Muslims Protest Planned Mass Deportation of Rohingya Refugees, Bangladeshi PM Lays Out Plan for U.N.-Backed Repatriation of Rohingya, Indian Journalist Killed on the Job in Northeast State, Philippines: Mass Protests Oppose President Duterte's Authoritarianism, France: Unions March as President Macron Plans to Cut Labor Protections, Sen. Bernie Sanders to Debate Republican Authors of Healthcare Bill, Children of Interned Japanese Americans Oppose Trump Travel Ban, Ex-NFL Star Aaron Hernandez Had Severe CTE at Time of Suicide, Vice Media Workers Vote to Unionize, St. Louis: Protests Against Acquittal of White Police Officer Continue, Cornell University Black Students Protest Racist Incidents on Campus
"One Long Night": Writer Andrea Pitzer on History of Concentration Camps & Rise of Intolerance Today
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:49:19 -0400
A humanitarian crisis is unfolding in Burma, where more than 400,000 members of the Rohingya Muslim minority have fled the country after hundreds of their villages were burned to the ground. The U.N. high commissioner for human rights has accused the Burmese government of waging a textbook example of ethnic cleansing. In the United States, there are increasing displays of anti-immigrant sentiment and anti-Semitism. In Palestine, the United Nations has warned the Gaza Strip has become uninhabitable. For more on concentration camps and anti-Semitism, we speak with journalist and author Andrea Pitzer. Her book has just been published, titled "One Long Night: A Global History of Concentration Camps."
Trump Admin Doubles Down on Plans to Withdraw from Paris Deal as UNGA Makes Climate Top Priority
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:43:04 -0400
At the United Nations, President Trump's chief economic adviser, Gary Cohn, said Monday the U.S. would withdraw from the landmark 2015 Paris climate accord as planned. His comments came as U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres said climate should be a top priority at this year's General Assembly. Our guest, economist Jeffrey Sachs, notes that the "agreement is completely symmetrical for all 193 countries," and also argues that chemical and oil companies should help pay for recovery efforts after extreme weather related to climate change.
Economist Jeff Sachs: Americans Who Don't Want War with Iran Must Speak Out Now
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:36:33 -0400
President Trump's comments at the United Nations General Assembly urging the withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal sounded familiar to our guest, Jeffrey Sachs. "The last time we had this kind of rhetoric was George W. Bush with the axis of evil," Sachs said. "It was immediately followed by the Iraq War, which was the most disastrous single step of American military action and 'diplomacy,' or anti-diplomacy, in modern times. So this is a setup, again, for war, for conflict. And it is extraordinarily ignorant and dangerous. Iran is in compliance with the agreement that was reached."
Jeff Sachs Warns "Nuclear War is a Real Threat" as Trump Threatens to "Totally Destroy" North Korea
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:27:50 -0400
On Tuesday, President Trump gave his first address to the United Nations General Assembly, boasting about the size of the U.S. military and threatening to "totally destroy" North Korea. "[N]uclear war is a real threat," says Jeffrey Sachs, leading economist and director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University. "It's not some idle imagination right now. You have two leaders—both seem unstable—yelling at each other. Both have nuclear arms."
Environmental Disaster Looms in Puerto Rico, Lashed by Hurricane Maria & Left Without Power
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:15:24 -0400
Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico Wednesday as a Category 4 storm, bringing record rainfall and catastrophic flooding, destroying power lines and leaving the entire country in the dark. This comes as many homes on Puerto Rico were still dark two weeks after Hurricane Irma cut electricity to hundreds of thousands. The storm also raised concerns about potential environmental disasters. Puerto Rico is home to 23 Superfund sites, including on the island of Vieques, site of a former U.S. naval test range, which took a near-direct hit from the storm. It is also the site of a coal-fired power plant owned by the private company AES. Residents across the island have been demanding the plant be closed and that the company stop dumping toxic coal ash into their community, saying the waste is poisonous to their health and the environment. We speak with Emily Atkin, staff writer covering the environment at the New Republic, who writes, "Puerto Rico is Already an Environmental Tragedy. Hurricane Maria Will Make It Even Worse."
Headlines for September 21, 2017
Thu, 21 Sep 2017 08:00:00 -0400
Mexico: Death Toll from Massive Earthquake Rises to 250 People, Hurricane Maria Knocks Out Power & Causes Catastrophic Flooding in Puerto Rico, Dozens of Countries Sign Landmark Treaty to Ban Nuclear Weapons at U.N., Iran Slams Trump for Threatening to Undo Nuclear Treaty, Trump Considering Resuming Suspended Military Aid to Egypt, Obama Slams Republicans' Latest Effort to Repeal Affordable Care Act, California Sues Trump over Border Wall, Togo: Hundreds of Thousands Demand President's Ouster and Term Limits, Spanish Officials Raid Catalan Offices in Crackdown on Independence Referendum, U.S.-Led Coalition Airstrikes Reportedly Kill Six Civilians on Syria-Iraq Border, Croatia Removes Billboards of Melania Trump After She Threatens Lawsuit, Scottie Nell Hughes Sues Fox, Alleging Fox Anchor Charles Payne Raped Her, ND Judges Trying to End Program Allowing Out-of-State Lawyer to Represent Water Protectors, Palestinian Activist Rasmea Odeh Deported from U.S. to Jordan
Trump Slammed as "Enemy to Most of the World" as He Vows Not to Lift Sanctions on Cuba
Wed, 20 Sep 2017 08:44:44 -0400
On Tuesday, speaking to the United Nations General Assembly, President Trump railed against the Cuban government and said the U.S. would not lift its sanctions against Cuba. Trump has moved to reverse the normalization of relations between the U.S. and Cuba and reimpose travel and trade restrictions. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson also said the U.S. may close the embassy over a host of unexplained health problems that embassy workers are suffering, including hearing loss and brain injury. The health problems appear to be caused by some form of sonic attack. Cuban officials deny any involvement in the apparent sonic attack and are cooperating with U.S. officials to investigate the incidents. We speak with José Pertierra, a Cuban attorney who represented the Venezuelan government in its efforts to extradite Luis Posada Carriles. We also speak with Jeri Rice, director of the film "Embargo," a new documentary about U.S.-Cuba relations premiering this week in New York.
Advocates Warn All Rohingya May Be Driven Out of Burma If Military's Ethnic Cleansing Continues
Wed, 20 Sep 2017 08:30:56 -0400
A humanitarian crisis continues to unfold in Burma, where more than 400,000 members of the Rohingya Muslim minority have fled the country to escape a brutal Burmese military operation. According to Human Rights Watch, tens of thousands of Rohingya homes have been burned to the ground. Some 214 Rohingya villages in Burma have been destroyed. Before-and-after satellite photos distributed by Human Rights Watch reveal that wide swaths of Rakhine state have been destroyed in recent weeks. Last week, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein accused the Burmese government of waging a textbook example of ethnic cleansing. On Tuesday, Human Rights Watch called on the United Nations General Assembly to condemn the Burmese military operation. Meanwhile, Burmese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who is now Burma's de facto president, is facing mounting criticism for her handling of the violence. Last year, she attended the United Nations General Assembly as Burma's much-esteemed new civilian leader. This year, she has refrained from attending the gathering, choosing to avoid questions about the Burmese military's crackdown on the Rohingya. During a nationally televised speech on Tuesday, Suu Kyi refused to blame the military or address the U.N.'s accusation of ethnic cleansing. We speak with Azeem Ibrahim, author of the book "The Rohingyas: Inside Myanmar's Hidden Genocide." He's a senior fellow at the Center for Global Policy.
Senate Republicans Scramble to Secure Votes for Last-Ditch Effort to Repeal Affordable Care Act
Wed, 20 Sep 2017 08:22:56 -0400
Vice President Mike Pence and other Trump administration officials spent Tuesday on Capitol Hill lobbying Republican senators to support the latest healthcare plan, known as the Graham-Cassidy bill, named after its main architects, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina. The last-ditch effort by Senate Republicans to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act has to be done by September 30, when a deadline allowing the Senate to pass the legislation by a simple majority expires. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities says the bill would cause many millions of people to lose coverage, gut Medicaid, eliminate or weaken protections for people with pre-existing conditions and increase out-of-pocket healthcare costs to individuals, all while showering tax cuts on the wealthiest Americans. The New York Times editorial board wrote on Tuesday, "It is hard to overstate the cruelty of the Graham-Cassidy bill." We speak with Alice Ollstein, a politics reporter at Talking Points Memo focusing on healthcare. Her recent piece is titled "Where Things Stand with the Senate's Last-Ditch Obamacare Repeal Push."
Hurricane Maria Strikes Puerto Rico, Threatening to Be the Most Catastrophic Storm in a Century
Wed, 20 Sep 2017 08:17:40 -0400
In the Caribbean, Hurricane Maria struck the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico this morning as a major Category 4 storm—the most powerful hurricane to make landfall there since 1928. The landfall on Puerto Rico came after Maria lashed the U.S. Virgin Islands and devastated the island of Dominica, causing what the country's prime minister called "mind-boggling" devastation. For more, we speak with Democracy Now! co-host Juan González.
Hundreds Dead in Mexico After Earthquake Strikes on Anniversary of Devastating 1985 Quake
Wed, 20 Sep 2017 08:10:51 -0400
In Mexico, a massive 7.1-magnitude quake struck 100 miles southeast of Mexico City Tuesday, collapsing dozens of buildings around the capital city and trapping schoolchildren, workers and residents beneath the rubble. At least 217 people are dead, and hundreds more are missing. Among the dead are least 21 students at a primary school in Mexico City and 15 worshipers who died during a Catholic mass when the earthquake triggered an eruption at a volcano southeast of the city. The disaster struck just hours after residents participated in an earthquake preparedness drill marking the 32nd anniversary of a 1985 earthquake that killed 5,000 people. Tuesday's quake follows another earthquake less than two weeks ago, which killed at least 90 people and leveled thousands of homes after it struck near the coast of the southern state of Oaxaca. We speak with Laura Carlsen, director of the Mexico City-based Americas Program of the Center for International Policy.