News & Updates

  • Support for Confederate symbols and monuments follows lines of race, religion, and education rather than geography.

    Posted by · October 11, 2022 6:09 PM

    The United States of Confederate America

    By David A. Graham

    The Atlantic - Several years ago, I was driving on a rural road when I came up behind a pickup truck with a Confederate-flag sticker on the back window. This isn’t such an unusual sight in some parts of the United States, but this instance surprised me: The truck had Pennsylvania plates, and the road was in Gettysburg, where an invading force of tens of thousands of Confederates, formed to defend Black slavery, arrived in summer 1863 on a pillaging expedition.

    But though the Civil War was a battle between two regions of the country, sympathy for the Confederacy is no longer confined to states that seceded and border states. Support for Confederate symbols and monuments now exists across the country, following lines of race, religion, and education rather than geography. This is one of many ways in which the South is no longer simply a region: A certain version of it has become an identity shared among white, rural, conservative Americans from coast to coast. That’s one takeaway from a new survey about Confederate symbols from the Public Religion Research Institute and E Pluribus Unum.

    “We’ve had hints of this in the ways that campaigns get run: It used to be that all politics are local, and it’s seeming more like all politics are national,” Robert P. Jones, the president and founder of PRRI, told me. “When you look at the predictors on Confederate monuments, they are much more about race and partisan affiliation and education levels than they are about region.”

    Some of the survey’s findings are unsurprising: Southerners are more likely to report Confederate monuments or displays of the flag in their community; Black southerners report especially acute awareness of such monuments. White Americans are more likely than Black Americans to see Confederate symbols as expressions of southern heritage rather than racism.

    Where things get interesting is when the survey measures support for reforms, whether destruction of these markers or removal to a museum: Across race, party, and education levels, numbers diverge, but views about reform are nearly identical in the South and in the rest of the country. Nearly identical portions of southerners and Americans elsewhere (22 percent versus 25 percent) back reform, and nearly identical portions oppose it (17 percent versus 20 percent). The remainder are split between leaning one way or another, again closely mirrored. In other words, non-southerners feel the same way about Confederate monuments that southerners do.

    This would surely come as a surprise to the men who professed fidelity to state and region above national identity when they sided with the Confederacy in 1861. But it’s the product of a dynamic in which white, rural Americans around the country have adopted the culture of white, rural southerners. This is only one piece of the region’s heritage, a rich, cosmopolitan, and multiracial mix that has shaped the entire country’s music, food, and culture, though it is also the one that has become the go-to stereotype of the region’s identity.

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  • Little progress combating systemic racism against people of African descent: UN report

    Posted by · October 03, 2022 7:19 AM

    More than two years since the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in the United States sparked the global Black Lives Matter movement, there’s been only “piecemeal progress” in addressing systemic racism, the UN human rights office (OHCHR) said on Friday, in a new report.

    While more people have been made aware of systemic racism and concrete steps have been taken in some countries, the Acting High Commissioner for Human Rights called on States to demonstrate greater political will to accelerate action.

    “There have been some initiatives in different countries to address racism, but for the most part they are piecemeal. They fall short of the comprehensive evidence-based approaches needed to dismantle the entrenched structural, institutional and societal racism that has existed for centuries, and continues to inflict deep harm today,” said Nada Al-Nashif, who will present the report to the UN Human Rights Council on Monday.

    She specifically pointed to key recommendations made in OHCHR’s Agenda towards Transformative Change for Racial Justice and Equality.

    Triggering change

    The report describes international, national and local initiatives that have been taken, towards ending the scourge of racism.

    These include an Executive Order from the White House on advancing effective, accountable policing and criminal justice practices in federal law enforcement agencies; an Anti-Racism Data Act in British Columbia, Canada; measures to evaluate ethnic profiling by police in Sweden; and census data collection to self-identify people of African descent in Argentina.

    The European Commission has issued guidance on collecting and using data based on racial or ethnic origin; formal apologies issued, memorialization, revisiting public spaces, and research, to assess links to enslavement and colonialism in several countries.

    ‘Barometer for success’

    The report notes that poor outcomes continue for people of African descent in many countries, notably in accessing health and adequate food, education, social protection, and justice - while poverty, enforced disappearance and violence continues.

    It highlights “continuing…allegations of discriminatory treatment, unlawful deportations, excessive use of force, and deaths of African migrants and migrants of African descent by law enforcement officials”

    The barometer for success must be positive change in the lived experiences of people of African descent,” continued Ms. Al-Nashif.

    “States need to listen to people of African descent, meaningfully involve them and take genuine steps to act upon their concerns.”

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  • Fetishized, sexualized and marginalized, Asian women are uniquely vulnerable to violence

    Posted by · September 12, 2022 12:22 PM

    CNN - Of the eight people who were killed when a White man attacked three metro Atlanta spas, six were Asian women.

    Investigators said it was too early to say whether the crime was racially motivated, and instead pointed to the suspect’s claim of a potential sex addiction.

    But experts and activists argue it’s no coincidence that six of the eight victims were Asian women. And the suspect’s remarks, they say, are rooted in a history of misogyny and stereotypes that are all too familiar for Asian and Asian American women.

    They’re fetishized and hypersexualized. They’re seen as docile and submissive. On top of that, they’re often working in the service sector and are subject to the same racism that affects Asian Americans more broadly.

    The way their race intersects with their gender makes Asian and Asian American women uniquely vulnerable to violence, said Sung Yeon Choimorrow, executive director of the non-profit advocacy group National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum.

    And those factors came together this week in a dangerous, and ultimately deadly, way.

    These perceptions are rooted in US history

    The perceptions of Asian and Asian American women as submissive, hypersexual and exotic can be traced back centuries.

    Rachel Kuo, a scholar on race and co-leader of Asian American Feminist Collective, points to legal and political measures throughout the nation’s history that have shaped these harmful ideas.

    One of the earliest examples comes from the Page Act of 1875.

    That law, coming a few years before the Chinese Exclusion Act, was enacted seemingly to restrict prostitution and forced labor. In reality, it was used systematically to prevent Chinese women from immigrating to the US, under the pretense that they were prostitutes.

    US imperialism has also played a significant role in those attitudes, Kuo said.

    American service members, while abroad for US military activities (including the Philippine-American War, World War II and the Vietnam War), have a history of soliciting sex workers and patronizing industries that encouraged sex trafficking. That furthered denigrating stereotypes of Asian women as sexual deviants, which were memorialized on screen.

    All of those perceptions “have had the effect of excusing and tolerating violence by ignoring, trivializing and normalizing it,” Kuo said.

    They’ve affected Asian women economically

    Those stereotypes also feed into perceptions of “Asian women as cheap and disposable workers,” said Kuo. That’s made them economically vulnerable, too.

    Asian American businesses have already been hit especially hard during the pandemic, fueled both by unemployment and xenophobia.

    Asian women, in particular, made up the highest share of long-term unemployed workers last December, according to a January report from the National Women’s Law Center.

    And many Asian American women work in service industries, such as beauty salons, hospitality and restaurants.

    “The narrative gets lost because we’re seen as the ‘model minority,’ where they think we’re all lawyers and doctors and engineers, but look into it a little deeper and many of the women in our community work in frontline service-based sectors,” Choimorrow, of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, said.

    Other advocates also called attention to the recent victims’ employment situations.

    “That the Asian women murdered yesterday were working highly vulnerable and low-wage jobs during an ongoing pandemic speaks directly to the compounding impacts of misogyny, structural violence, and white supremacy,” Phi Nguyen, litigation director at Asian American Advancing Justice - Atlanta, said in a statement.

    Massage parlor workers and sex workers are especially at risk, according to Esther Kao, an organizer with Red Canary Song, a New York-based collective of Asian and Asian American advocates for massage parlor workers and sex workers.

    She said those workers not only face stigma, but are also often migrants. Some may fear they risk deportation should authorities investigate violence or crimes against them.

    It’s also important to note that not all massage businesses provide sexual services, Kao said. To suggest as much, as the suspect in the Atlanta area attacks did, is a “racist assumption,” she said.

    “It ties specifically to the fetishization of Asian woman,” Kao added.

    They’re showing up in the violence seen today

    The recent attacks come as Asian Americans are experiencing a rise in incidents of hate and violence since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, echoing a historical pattern that has seen Asian Americans targeted during times of crisis because they are viewed as foreigners.

    Groups that track violence and harassment against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders say that their data shows that women are disproportionately affected.

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  • Black Americans see racism as a persistent challenge, and few say the country's racial reckoning has brought change

    Posted by · September 06, 2022 11:17 AM

    CNN - Two-thirds of Black Americans say that recent increased focus on race and racial inequality in the US has not led to changes that are improving the lives of Black people, according to a new report from the Pew Research Center.

    The finding marks a pessimistic turn: In September of 2020, a majority of Black adults (56%) felt the added attention to issues of race and equality following a summer of protests sparked by the murder of George Floyd would lead to changes that improved the lives of Black people.

    In the new survey, however, 65% of Black adults say that such changes haven't materialized. Just 13% see it as extremely or very likely that Black people in the US will achieve equality, with little variation in that figure by age, gender, region or education level.

    The survey -- which included interviews with more than 3,000 Black Americans nationwide conducted last fall -- finds 82% consider racism a major problem for Black people in the US. About 8 in 10 Black Americans report having personally experienced discrimination because of their race or ethnicity (79%) -- including 15% who say they experience such discrimination regularly. And roughly 7 in 10 (68%) say racial discrimination is the main reason why many Black people can't get ahead these days.

    "Overall, Black Americans are clear on what they think the problems are facing the country and how to remedy them," write Kiana Cox and Khadijah Edwards, the report's authors. "However, they are skeptical that meaningful changes will take place in their lifetime."

    A broad majority (85%) of Black adults say Black people in the US today are significantly affected by the legacy of slavery, and 77% say descendants of people enslaved in the US should be repaid in some way. But just 7% of Black adults see the payment of reparations as very or extremely likely in their own lifetimes. Among the overall US adult population, just 30% favor such reparations.

    Racism ranks as the most pressing problem for Black people living in the US out of six issues tested in the survey. Almost two-thirds of Black adults, 63%, say it is an extremely big problem for Black Americans, while 60% say the same of police brutality, 54% of economic inequality, 47% affordability of health care, 46% efforts to limit voting and 40% the quality of K-12 schools.

    A narrow majority of Black adults say that racism in the law is a bigger problem than racism by individual people (52%), while 43% feel individual racism is a bigger issue than that built into the law. Opinions are polarized, with 56% of Black Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents saying racism in the law is the bigger issue, while 59% of Black Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say racism by individuals is a bigger problem.

    Most Black Americans say that major changes are needed in American institutions to enable Black people to be treated fairly. That sentiment is strongest when it comes to the criminal justice system, where about half or more say the prison system (54%), policing (49%) or courts and the judicial process (48%) need to be completely rebuilt for Black people to receive fair treatment. Fewer feel a complete rebuild is in order for the political system (42%), the economic system (37%) or the health care system (34%), even though most say those systems merit major changes or more. Across each of these areas, few who think changes are needed expect to see them happen in their own lifetime.

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  • "New America": Avowed white nationalist, LGBTQ-hater pushes vision to Catholic right

    Posted by · August 29, 2022 11:45 AM

    On Aug. 18, the Catholic-right media outlet Church Militant featured a half-hour interview with John Doyle, a young YouTube streamer who drew national attention this June for helping to lead a uniquely ugly protest against an LGBTQ Pride Month event in downtown Dallas. The 22-year-old Doyle, whose YouTube show "Heck Off, Commie!" has an audience of some 300,000 subscribers, has openly referred to himself as both a "white nationalist" and "Christian fascist." But to his interviewer, Church Militant founder and president Michael Voris, he was a "saint in the making." And as the conversation brought Doyle's message to a new and different audience, the alignment of right-wing Catholicism with some of the most extreme voices on today's far right only grew. 

    For years, Church Militant has served as an angry gadfly within the world of right-wing Catholicism, objecting not just to moderate and progressive Catholics and Pope Francis, whom the outlet sees as a heretical liberal, but also to more mainstream conservative Catholic outlets it views as insufficiently critical of church hierarchy. 

    For his part, Doyle is a prominent member of online far-right youth circles aligned with the white nationalist America First/groyper movement and its leader, the gleefully racist and antisemitic livestreamer Nick Fuentes, with whom Doyle led a "Stop the Steal" protest in 2020. On his livestream show, where Doyle promotes an authoritarian form of Christian nationalism, he has attacked figures like Martin Luther King, Jr., claiming that "being assassinated was like the best thing that could happen to him" and said that "the destruction of white racism is ultimately code for the destruction of American society." Last October, Doyle taunted students at the University of North Texas by asking, "What is wrong with Christian fascism?" and warning that "when we and all my friends take power, bad things are going to happen to you."

    In February, Doyle appeared as a special guest at Fuentes' third America First Political Action Conference (AFPAC III) in Orlando, alongside far-right politicians like Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Arizona state Sen. Wendy Rogers, who called for hanging the movement's political enemies. In April, after keynoting an event hosted by the University of California, Santa Barbara, chapter of Turning Point USA, Doyle praised the group for being brave enough to invite "white nationalists" like "yours truly" to speak. 

    And this June, as Salon reported, Doyle attacked a family-friendly drag queen brunch at a Dallas gay bar, declaring that LGBTQ people are "the symptom of a dying society," that he aimed to take away "every single one" of their rights and that Texas sheriffs should enter the bar "and put bullets in all their heads" because "That's what the badge is for." 

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  • CNN SPECIAL REPORT RISING HATE: ANTISEMITISM IN AMERICA Sunday August 21 9:00PM

    Posted by · August 21, 2022 6:28 PM

    Sunday August 21st 9:00PM

    How to watch

  • Videos Show Man Attacking Women Minutes Apart in San Francisco's Richmond District

    Posted by · August 15, 2022 10:33 AM

    NBC - San Francisco police are searching for a man who attacked two women minutes apart in the city's Richmond district.

    The assaults have left some businesses and residents even more afraid in a normally safe and quiet area that has now become the scene of the most recent attacks on the Asian community.

    One of the attacks happened just past 11:30 a.m. Wednesday. Surveillance video shows a man in a black hoodie speaking to himself as he makes his way east on Geary Street. Another angle from a different surveillance video shows he turns around and points at an elderly woman wearing a hat. The woman glances at him and that's when the man turns and attacks, running her down and repeatedly punching her in the face.

    A car alarm is set off as the woman falls, which caused the attacker to run away. A witness who ran out to help, but did not want to be identified, told NBC Bay Area the 65-year-old Asian woman was left with a bloody lip, bloody teeth, and damaged glasses.

    The witness said what makes all this worse is the incident was the suspect's second attack.

    The first attack occurred minutes earlier and was also caught on surveillance video. The same man is seen punching another woman - also believed to be Asian - as she crosses the street.

    A nearby business owner said the attacks leave her even more afraid and even less sure about how to protect herself.

    "If you carry pepper spray - what are we going to do if they're going to attack you? They're faster than us and we are only women," the business owner said. "What should we do?"

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  • Veteran S.F. commissioner latest victim of attacks against Asian Americans

    Posted by · August 08, 2022 4:22 PM

    MSN - A veteran San Francisco commissioner was assaulted while walking home in San Francisco’s South of Market district, the latest in a spate of violent attacks against Asian Americans.

    Gregory Chew, a former member of the city’s arts, film and immigrant rights commissions, said he was walking down Third Street at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday when an assailant rolled up on a bicycle and suddenly began punching him.

    “I didn’t even know what happened,” Chew told The Chronicle on Saturday as he sat at home recuperating from injuries, including a badly swollen eye and a broken left shoulder. He remembered blacking out on the sidewalk as the attacker took off.

    When Chew regained consciousness, he remembered seeing two women emerge from a pingpong club, trying to help. A bystander evidently called police, and within minutes, he said, an ambulance arrived to take him to California Pacific Medical Center on Van Ness Avenue.

    The man who attacked Chew did not say anything during the encounter, and his motivations were not clear. Chew said he felt his pockets minutes after the assailant left, and realized his wallet and cell phone were still there.

    “There was no robbery,” he said.

    Representatives of San Francisco Police Department did not immediately respond to requests for comment Saturday. As of Saturday evening the department had not released information on the alleged assault, nor have police identified a person of interest or announced an arrest.

    Supervisor Matt Dorsey, whose district includes SoMa, described the assault in a tweet as “senseless violence” directed at a longtime public servant.

    “We’ve talked and he is doing okay — he’s got many fans who are wishing him well — but there should be no place for these kinds of attacks in San Francisco,” Dorsey wrote, referring to Chew.

    Both the supervisor and retired commissioner fear the attack fits a pattern of unprovoked violence against Asian Americans — particularly older adults like Chew, who is in his 70s — that ramped up during the pandemic. On Sunday, Asian American community leaders and their allies rallied in Washington Square Park, urging the city to clamp down on what appear to be targeted crimes.

    From March 19, 2020, to March 31, 2022, people nationwide reported 11,467 episodes of aggression and hate towards Asian Americans, one-sixth of which involved physical violence, according to data collected by the organization Stop AAPI Hate.

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  • While causing significant fear and trauma, the majority of hate incidents reported to Stop AAPI Hate are not hate crimes and would not be investigated or prosecuted as such.

    Posted by · August 01, 2022 10:16 AM

    StopAAPIHate

    In February and March 2020, Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI)
    communities around the country experienced a surge in harassment,
    bullying, and other acts of hate. News media cited an increasing number
    of horrific attacks targeting AAPI community members. A large number
    of these incidents employed anti-China rhetoric that blamed AAPI
    communities for the emerging COVID-19 pandemic.


    In response, Chinese for Affirmative Action, AAPI Equity Alliance (formerly the Asian Pacific Policy &
    Planning Council), and San Francisco State University’s Asian American Studies Department launched
    the Stop AAPI Hate reporting center on March 19, 2020. In the first week, we received over 600 reports
    from across the country. Within one month, we received almost 1,500 reports.

    Sadly, two years later, AAPI community members across the country continue to experience hate at
    alarming levels. Everyday, we receive stories of anti-AAPI slurs, shunning, physical violence, or other
    forms of discrimination. The patterns are consistent: these terrible incidents occur as people attempt
    to go about their daily lives — buying groceries, riding public transit, or walking their children to school.
    Community members share the fear and trauma that they experience as a result of these incidents.

    Collectively, the voices of individuals who have reported almost 11,500 incidents to us over the past two
    years have become a powerful tool. Not only have their stories garnered national attention on anti-AAPI
    hate, the details that they have provided have facilitated a more nuanced understanding of what anti-
    AAPI hate looks like. We now know that the majority of hate incidents, though harmful and traumatic, do
    not meet the legal definition of a crime, and therefore require solutions beyond law enforcement.

    This report shares what we have learned over the past two years and what it takes to address the
    systemic root causes of anti-AAPI hate. Every individual traumatic incident reported to Stop AAPI Hate
    reminds us of the urgent need to address systemic racism; our collective voice advocating for solutions
    is how we will do it.

    Read the Report at Stop AAPI Hate

  • This movement uses Christian language to cloak sexism and hostility to Black people and non-White immigrants in its quest to create a White Christian America.

    Posted by · July 26, 2022 9:59 AM

    An ‘imposter Christianity’ is threatening American democracy

    CNN - Three men, eyes closed and heads bowed, pray before a rough-hewn wooden cross. Another man wraps his arms around a massive Bible pressed against his chest like a shield. All throughout the crowd, people wave “Jesus Saves” banners and pump their fists toward the sky.

    At first glance, these snapshots look like scenes from an outdoor church rally. But this event wasn’t a revival; it was what some call a Christian revolt. These were photos of people who stormed the US Capitol on January 6, 2021, during an attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.

    The insurrection marked the first time many Americans realized the US is facing a burgeoning White Christian nationalist movement. This movement uses Christian language to cloak sexism and hostility to Black people and non-White immigrants in its quest to create a White Christian America.

    A report from a team of clergy, scholars and advocates — sponsored by two groups that advocate for the separation of church and state — concluded that this ideology was used to “bolster, justify and intensify” the attack on the US Capitol.

    Much of the House January 6 committee’s focus so far has been on right-wing extremist groups. But there are plenty of other Americans who have adopted teachings of the White Christian nationalists who stormed the Capitol — often without knowing it, scholars, historians, sociologists and clergy say.

    White Christian nationalist beliefs have infiltrated the religious mainstream so thoroughly that virtually any conservative Christian pastor who tries to challenge its ideology risks their career, says Kristin Kobes Du Mez, author of the New York Times bestseller, “Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation.”

    “These ideas are so widespread that any individual pastor or Christian leader who tries to turn the tide and say, ‘Let’s look again at Jesus and scripture,’ are going to be tossed aside,” she says.

    The ideas are also insidious because many sound like expressions of Christian piety or harmless references to US history. But White Christian nationalists interpret these ideas in ways that are potentially violent and heretical. Their movement is not only anti-democratic, it contradicts the life and teachings of Jesus, some clergy, scholars and historians say.

    Samuel Perry, a professor of religious studies at the University of Oklahoma who is authority on the ideology, calls it an “imposter Christianity.”

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