You are hereCivil Rights / Liberties

Civil Rights / Liberties

Lost drug war: Pot Decriminalization Yields $9-million in Savings for Philadelphia

By Linn Washington, Jr.


A vivid example of value from decriminalization of possessing small amounts of marijuana occurred at the Philadelphia airport recently, a few days after the release of a report from two prominent organizations that called for the national decriminalization of personal use/possession of marijuana and other illicit drugs.

Do Western Nations Care about Yemeni Lives or Saudi Blood Money?

 How much is the life of a Yemeni worth? Not much, according to the Saudi regime that has been bombing and starving the people of Yemen since March 2015, or to the Saudi’s western backers, particularly the US and UK, which have been supplying the Saudi regime with weapons, military training, logistical support and diplomatic cover for its dirty interventionist war.

Keywords to add to all electronic communications: As the Surveillance Expands, Best Way to Resist is to Bury the NSA in Garbage

By Dave Lindorff


Word that Yahoo! last year, at the urging of the National Security Agency, secretly developed a program that monitored the mail of all 280 million of its customers and turned over to the NSA all mail from those who used any of the agency's thousands of keywords, shows that the US has become a total police state in terms of trying to monitor every person in the country (and outside too).

A scandal that reveals more than it says: Yahoo Scanned All Users’ Mail for the Government

By Alfredo Lopez


If you are one of the approximately 280 million people with Yahoo email accounts, your email was scanned for content and possibly turned over to the U.S. government. Yahoo, on Tuesday, admitted that fact.

We got 8 years of change, but not much hope: President Barack Obama’s Crappy Legacy

By Dave Lindorff


Barack Obama came into the White House on a wave of passionate new voters, many of them black or young and white, becoming the nation's first black president and promising a new era of "hope and change."

Security Firm Guarding Dakota Access Pipeline Also Used Psychological Warfare Tactics for BP

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

G4S, a company hiring security staff to guard the hotly contested Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL), also works to guard oil and gas industry assets in war-torn Iraq, and has come under fire by the United Nations for human rights abuses allegedly committed while overseeing a BP pipeline in Colombia and elsewhere while on other assignments.

Documents: How Big Oil Pushed to Make Dakota Access-Style Permitting a New Normal

Cross-Posted from DeSmogBlog

In the two months leading up to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' decision to issue to the Dakota Access pipeline project an allotment of Nationwide 12 permits (NWP) — a de facto fast-track federal authorization of the project — an army of oil industry players submitted comments to the Corps to ensure that fast-track authority remains in place going forward.

This fast-track permitting process is used to bypass more rigorous environmental and public review for major pipeline infrastructure projects by treating them as smaller projects.

New York Times shames itself: Attacking Wikileaks’ Assange for Doing What Journalists are Supposed to Do

By Dave Lindorff


While I periodically have written commentaries dissecting and pillorying news articles in the New York Times to expose their bias, hypocrisy half-truths and lies, I generally ignore their editorials since these are overtly opinions of the management, and one expects them to display the elitist and neo-liberal perspective of the paper’s publisher and senior editors.

Initiative-873 gives small flicker of hope: Seattle’s ‘Liberals’ Get Chance to Finally Start Addressing Police Brutality

By Jess Guh, MD


Seattle, WA -- Ever since moving to Seattle it’s become clear to me that though most of its inhabitants identify as liberals, the dominant white culture enables a culture of armchair liberals. When it comes to LGBT rights, Seattle will stand up, but when it comes to addressing issues that actually threaten the comfortable, largely white and privileged population of the Seattle, it’s another story.

As Police Killings of Minorities Mount, Attacks on Police Like the One in Dallas, While Awful, Are Also Sadly Predictable

By Dave Lindorff


            The tragedy that is America has deepened with the news that several people on Thursday organized a military-style sniper attack targeting police in Dallas during a protest march and rally against police brutality and killings of black people in that city.


Internet divide issues persist: An Emancipation Proclamation for the Digital Age

By Alfredo Lopez and Jackie Smith


We just celebrated "Juneteenth" (the start of the end of slavery in the U.S.) amid tumultuous and sometimes confusing politics and what appears to be an increase in racist mobilization. For internet activists the situation begs the question: what, at this moment in our history, is the relationship between technology and black people?

America’s party-line corporate media: The Democratic Primary Race Has Been Called Before 15% of the Country Votes

By Dave Lindorff


            Reading the papers and listening to the radio about the Democratic primary race, which is reaching its climax tomorrow in California, New Jersey, Montana, New Mexico and South Dakota, I’m having a powerful sense of deja vu harking back to my years living and working as a journalist in China in the 1990s.

It’s happening right under our noses!: Let’s Stop Google from Gobbling Up Our Schools

By Jackie Smith and Alfredo Lopez


(The following article was co-written by Dr. Jackie Smith -- of the International Network of Scholar Activsts -- and TCBH member Alfredo Lopez. It is being published here and in other places.)


Fanning fears during London’s mayoral election: Islamophobia on the Rise in England

By Linn Washington, Jr.


During a casual conversation inside a store on a swanky shopping street located a short distance from London’s fabled Kensington Palace a twenty-something retail clerk said she feels a strange sense of discomfort that she’s never felt before in London, the city where this native of Algeria has lived most of her life.

Belgium attacks: more proof that the TSA is useless

The bomb attacks in Belgium today -- three of them, two at different locations in the airport and one in the subway -- present in high relief yet more proof  of what some us have been pointing out for years: the TSA is a charade. The TSA does not and cannot and will never prevent terror attacks. All the pre-boarding bullying, harassing, scanning, and groping doesn't make a damn bit of difference, because -- duh -- people can set off bombs anywhere, not just on a plane.  

Hillary Clinton backed the coup: Shine the Light of Truth on Poor Honduras

By John Grant


Since the coup, Honduras has become one of the most dangerous places in the world.

TSA finally issues “rule” on body scanners, ignores public



On the righthand side of this blog, you’ll see this paragraph:

TSA goons steal woman’s shoes, bracelet at BWI

In the never-ending saga of TSA theft and stupidity — and did I say theft? — we have the latest episode (that we know of): at Baltimore-Washington International Airport, the goons saw yet another tasty treat they wanted to sample. So they pretended that said items were dangerous and confiscated them — er, sorry, encouraged the passenger to give them up. (As we know, since they tell us all the time, especially at their main propaganda organ, they don’t confiscate anything.) From the story in the Baltimore Sun:

Whatever its motive, Apple’s on the right far: Apple Champions Privacy; Government Seeks to Trash It

By Alfredo Lopez


Truth can be stranger than fiction...or at least more surprising. Apple Computer is the current champion of privacy against U.S. government attempts to expand its spying on us. The company, a frequent NSA and FBI collaborator in the past, finds itself in the strange position of confronting a federal court order to dislodge its iPhone security system, an action Apple insists will cripple encryption as a privacy-protection measure.

Frederick Douglass wouldn’t have put up with the TSA

by Lisa Simeone

Great American orator, scholar, and abolitionist Frederick Douglass was born sometime in February of 1818 and died on this date, February 20th, in 1895. Among the many brilliant, fiery speeches he gave and essays he wrote, none have been more often excerpted and quoted than these lines, which apply today every bit as much as they did in his time. I’ve quoted them often, but never enough. So it’s fitting that I take this opportunity to commemorate him and do it again:


Read the rest at TSA News.

Wrongs still need to be righted: Britain's Supreme Court Reverses Legal Practice Notorious For Prejudicial Enforcment

By Linn Washington, Jr.

London, UK

Often lost amidst the damning evidence of injustice in the enforcement of Britain’s notorious legal doctrine of joint enterprise are real people like Susan Williams –- persons whose lives have been shredded by the JE doctrine that Britain’s Supreme Court just gutted in a dramatic ruling today. Williams' grandson is serving a life sentence under joint enterprise which permits convictions carrying long sentences even of persons who did not commit a crime or even know a crime would occur.

Williams said her grandson was trying to break up a fight in 2010 that ended in a fatal shooting by others, yet led to his conviction under JE. The nightmare for Williams following the joint enterprise arrest and conviction of her grandson, Trevelle Williams, got much darker last November when her youngest daughter, the mother of Trevelle, committed suicide. Williams’ daughter, Tara Le, was distraught over her inability to free her son Trevelle, nicknamed Bluey, from what the Williams family and others saw as a wrongful conviction.

Ask TSA by Susan Richart

As TSA News readers know, the Transportation Security Administration has a nifty new “training academy” in Glynco, Georgia. Supposedly all new TSA hires from across the country, including Hawaii and Alaska, will attend this academy for two weeks of training (replacing the current four weeks of in-house local airport training), and all current TSA employees will be sent for additional training.

Chris Bray wrote about it

Read the rest at TSA News.

Supreme Court Junket King Scalia Dies While Vacationing with Wealthy Patrons at Private West Texas Getaway

By Dave Lindorff


            It’s appropriate that Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died at a luxury resort while freeloading as the guest of thus far unidentified wealthy sponsors as one of  40 guests at a private quail-hunting vacation party.


Speaking Events


Support This Site


Get free books and gear when you become a supporter.



Speaking Truth to Empire


Families United


Ray McGovern


Financial supporters of this site can choose to be listed here.

Buy Books

Get Gear

The log-in box below is only for bloggers. Nobody else will be able to log in because we have not figured out how to stop voluminous spam ruining the site. If you would like us to have the resources to figure that out please donate. If you would like to receive occasional emails please sign up. If you would like to be a blogger here please send your resume.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.