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LGBT Splinter Group From Migrant Caravan Is The 1st To Arrive In Tijuana

Nov 14, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on LGBT Splinter Group From Migrant Caravan Is The 1st To Arrive In Tijuana

A group of mostly LGBT Central American migrants are the first to reach northern Mexico. On Sunday about 80 of them arrived in Tijuana. They plan to apply for asylum as early as Thursday.

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A group of mostly LGBT Central American migrants are the first to reach northern Mexico. On Sunday about 80 of them arrived in Tijuana. They plan to apply for asylum as early as Thursday.

Rodrigo Abd/AP

A group of LGBT migrants who were part of the massive caravan slowly marching toward the U.S. made it to the coastal border city of Tijuana on Sunday. They are the first of more than 3,600 Central Americans to reach the northern border of Mexico.

About 80 migrants, the majority of whom identify as LGBT, splintered off from the larger group in Mexico City after weeks of what they say was discriminatory treatment by local residents and other travelers, Honduran migrant Cesar Mejia told reporters at a news conference on Sunday.

“Whenever we arrived at a stopping point the LGBT community was the last to be taken into account in every way. So our goal was to change that and say, ‘This time we are going to be first,’ ” Mejia said.

Members of the group in Tijuana include Honduran, Guatemalan, Nicaraguan and Salvadoran men and women, including transgender men and women, and also a handful of children. They are weeks ahead of the thousands who are on foot; the largest group of migrants is in Guadalajara, Mexico — nearly 1,400 miles south of Tijuana.

Most plan to use their status as members of a persecuted class to request asylum in the U.S. as early as Thursday.

“We are fleeing a country where there’s a lot of crime against us,” an unidentified transgender woman, told reporters.

U.S. Officials 'Harden' Border With Mexico To Prepare For Migrant Caravan

Trump Administration Seeks To Limit Asylum-Seekers With New Rule

The LGBT migrants gravitated toward one another within the caravan and began organizing en route. An internal count revealed there were more than 120 LGBT people among them, Voice of San Diego reported. Their number emboldened the collective to forge their own path northward, which they did after linking up with an assortment of U.S. and Mexico-based LGBT groups that paid for the asylum-seekers to travel by bus, Univision said.

“When we entered Mexican territory, those organizations began to help us. We did not contact them; they learned from our group thanks to the media and decided to help us,” Mejia said.

On Sunday the group arrived at an upscale neighborhood called Coronado in Playas de Tijuana just a few miles from the San Diego port of entry. They were dropped off in the tony enclave in small groups by Mexican immigration officials who had been alerted of the migrants’ arrival in nearby Mexicali. But upon their arrival they were met with anger from local residents who said they should have been warned by local authorities that LGBT people would be renting the four-bedroom house.

“This is a peaceful neighborhood and we don’t want any trouble,” Jose Roberto Martinez told Mejia. He said he lived in the neighborhood and that families in the area had survived terrible violence that plagued the region in the early 2000s — a result of the vicious drug wars in Tijuana.

“We aren’t safe here,” a woman who lives in the neighborhood said. “There could be someone within your group that could hurt us.”

Another woman demanded to know how the group had come up with the money to pay the rental fee for the expensive house. Mejia assured the community they were not backed by narcotraffickers.

    NPR Politics Podcast

Mejia spoke with reporters about the arduous journey that began on Oct. 12, recounting instances in which many LGBT migrants were denied food and access to showers by other members of the caravan or local groups providing aid.

“There was no physical abuse but there was plenty of verbal abuse,” a transgender woman told reporters, although she added it was nothing compared to the reality of living as a transgender woman in her home country of Honduras.

Erick Dubon told Telemundo 20 that he was forced into prostitution in Honduras. With no options for any other type of work, he said, he had to choose between becoming a thief or sleeping with men for money. He chose the latter and that made him vulnerable to attacks. Telemundo reported Dubon’s body is covered in scars from a violent assault.

Nehemias de Leon shared similar stories about living in Guatemala. He said the trip north was difficult and frightening, and that the chances of obtaining asylum are slim in light of the Trump administration’s rhetoric regarding the caravan and immigrants in general. But Leon said he’ll never go back. “It would be a death sentence,” he said.

Among the few possessions Leon has carried with him along the 2,400 mile journey are documents he said are proof of the danger he faces living as a gay man in his country of origin.

“We want to do things in order, in the right way,” Mejia told reporters. He said the LGBT group plans to request asylum at the San Ysidro or Otay Mesa ports of entry. “We are waiting for our representatives,” he added.

César Palencia, the head of migrant services for Tijuana’s municipal government, told Univision there are more than 2,000 people already waiting for an interview with U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials. He anticipates anyone who applies now will have to wait until the end of the year for an interview.

Trump’s Continued Claims Of Fraud Without Evidence Undermines Legitimacy Of Elections

Nov 14, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Trump’s Continued Claims Of Fraud Without Evidence Undermines Legitimacy Of Elections

President Trump and GOP leaders in Florida have been raising doubts about the process of counting votes, claiming fraud without evidence. That can have a corrosive effect on democratic institutions.

‘The Cleaners’ Looks At Who Cleans Up The Internet’s Toxic Content

Nov 13, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on ‘The Cleaners’ Looks At Who Cleans Up The Internet’s Toxic Content

Content moderators are responsible for determining what we see and what we don’t on social media.

Courtesy of gebrueder beetz filmproduktion


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Content moderators are responsible for determining what we see and what we don’t on social media.

Courtesy of gebrueder beetz filmproduktion

Thousands of content moderators work around the clock to ensure that Facebook, YouTube, Google and other online platforms remain free of toxic content. That can include trolling, sexually explicit photos or videos, violent threats and more.

Those efforts — run by both humans and algorithms — have been hotly contested in recent years. In April, Mark Zuckerberg spoke before a congressional committee on how Facebook would work to cut down the prevalence of propaganda, hate speech and other harmful content on the platform.

With 'Napalm Girl,' Facebook Humans (Not Algorithms) Struggle To Be Editor

“By the end of this year we’re gonna have more than 20,000 people working on security and content review,” Zuckerberg said.

The Cleaners, a documentary by filmmakers Hans Block and Moritz Riesewieck, seeks to get to the bottom how, exactly, that work is done. The film follows five content moderators and uncovers their jobs actually entail.

“I have seen hundreds of beheadings. Sometimes they’re lucky that it’s just a very sharp blade that’s being used to them,” one content moderator says in a clip from the film.

Block and Riesewieck explored more of the harsh realities that come along with being a content moderator in an interview with All Things Considered.

Did Fake News On Facebook Help Elect Trump? Here's What We Know

Interview Highlights

On a Facebook content moderator’s typical day

They see all these things which we don’t want to see online, on social media. That could be terror, that could be beheading videos like the ones the voice was talking about before. It could be pornography, it can be sexual abuse, it could be necrophilia, on one hand.

And on the other hand it could be content which could be useful for political debates, or to make awareness about war crimes and so on. So they have to moderate thousands of pictures every day, and they need to be quick in order to reach the score for the day. … It’s sometimes up to so many pictures a day. And then they need to decide whether to delete it or to let it stay up.

On Facebook’s decision to remove the Pulitzer Prize-winning “napalm girl” photo

This content moderator, he decides that he would rather delete it because it depicts a young, naked child. So he applies this rule against child nudity, which is strictly prohibited.

So it is always necessary to distinguish between so many different cases. … There are so many gray areas which remain, in which the content moderators sometimes told us they have to decide by their gut feelings.

How Russian Propaganda Spreads On Social Media

On the weight of distinguishing harmful content from news images or art

It’s an overwhelming jump — it’s so complex to distinguish between all these different kinds of rules. … These young Filipino workers there have a training from three to five days, which is not enough to do a job like this.

On the impact of content moderators being exposed to toxic content daily

Many of the young people are highly traumatized because of the work.

From Hate Speech To Fake News: The Content Crisis Facing Mark Zuckerberg

The symptoms are very different. Sometimes people told us they are afraid to go into public places because they’re reviewing terror attacks every day. Or they’re afraid to have an intimate relationship with his boy or girlfriend because they seeing sexual abuse videos every day. So this is kind of the effect this work has….

Manila [capital of the Philippines] was a place where the analog toxic waste was sent from the Western world, has been sent there for years on container ships. And today the digital garbage is brought there. Now thousands of young content moderators in air conditioned office towers are clicking through the infinity toxic sea of images and tons of intellectual junk.

Emily Kopp and Art Silverman edited and produced this story for broadcast. Cameron Jenkins produced this story for digital.

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema Wins Arizona Senate Race, Flipping Second GOP Seat

Nov 13, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Democrat Kyrsten Sinema Wins Arizona Senate Race, Flipping Second GOP Seat

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema is projected to win the Arizona Senate race, according to the Associated Press.

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Democrat Kyrsten Sinema is projected to win the Arizona Senate race, according to the Associated Press.

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Updated at 8:40 p.m. ET

Democrat Kyrsten Sinema has defeated Republican Martha McSally to win the Arizona Senate race, the Associated Press projected Monday evening.

With Sinema’s victory to flip the open seat of retiring GOP Sen. Jeff Flake, she becomes the first Democrat Arizona has elected to the Senate since 1988. She will not only be the state’s first female senator but will also be the first openly bisexual senator in U.S. history.

Shortly after the race was called in her favor, Sinema wrote on Twitter that she will “be an independent voice for all Arizonans.”

McSally also posted a video saying she had called Sinema to congratulate her.

McSally could still, however, become a senator. An Arizona Republic op-ed on Monday called for Republican Gov. Doug Ducey to appoint McSally to Arizona’s other seat. Former GOP Sen. Jon Kyl was appointed to fill the vacancy following the death of Sen. John McCain earlier this year, but if Kyl steps down Ducey would need to name another Republican to replace him. That person would have to run in a special election in 2020 before running again for a full term in 2022.

For now, the win in Arizona means that Democrats have narrowed GOP gains in the Senate to only one seat so far — Republicans defeated incumbents in North Dakota, Indiana and Missouri, but Democrats flipped seats in Nevada and now Arizona. There are two outstanding races, including Florida, where a recount is underway to determine whether Republican Gov. Rick Scott’s narrow lead over Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson will hold.

Mississippi’s Senate race will be decided by a runoff on Nov. 27, and the race was thrown into turmoil after video surfaced on Sunday of incumbent GOP Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith making a comment about a “public hanging.” Mississippi is a state with a dark history of racial violence including lynchings, and Hyde-Smith’s Democratic opponent, Mike Espy, is African-American.

Democrats’ win in Arizona means they were able to expand their reach into traditionally red territory — something they did in the House last week as they flipped control of the chamber, but have yet to do in the Senate. President Trump won Arizona by 4 points in 2016.

The campaign between the two congresswomen was a bitter race that took almost a week to decide, with mail-in ballots still being counted. But over the past few days, Sinema’s lead continued to grow.

Sinema, a member of the centrist Blue Dog caucus in the House, had campaigned as a moderate. But Republicans had hit her over her more liberal past when she was a state lawmaker, including for her anti-war stances and past protests.

A retired Air Force colonel who made history as the first woman ever to fly in combat, McSally had to first survive a conservative primary challenge. That forced her to move to the right, especially on immigration. A onetime Trump critic, McSally instead allied herself with the president in this contest.

After NRA Mocks Doctors, Physicians Reply: ‘This Is Our Lane’

Nov 12, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on After NRA Mocks Doctors, Physicians Reply: ‘This Is Our Lane’

Doctors have been tweeting about their experiences treating victims of gun violence after the NRA mocked a position paper by the American College of Physicians. Above, the NRA logo in 2017 at an outdoor sports trade show in Harrisburg, Penn.

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Doctors have been tweeting about their experiences treating victims of gun violence after the NRA mocked a position paper by the American College of Physicians. Above, the NRA logo in 2017 at an outdoor sports trade show in Harrisburg, Penn.

Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images

Note: This story includes graphic imagery and language.

A mocking tweet from the National Rifle Association has stirred many physicians to post on social media about their tragically frequent experiences treating patients in the aftermath of gun violence.

“Someone should tell self-important anti-gun doctors to stay in their lane,” the NRA tweeted on Thursday. “Half of the articles in Annals of Internal Medicine are pushing for gun control. Most upsetting, however, the medical community seems to have consulted NO ONE but themselves.”

The NRA was criticizing the American College of Physicians’ (ACP) new position paper, in which the physicians’ group outlines its public health approach to reducing deaths and injuries from firearms.

“We are not anti-gun: we are anti-bullet holes in our patients,” Esther Choo, a doctor and professor of emergency medicine at Oregon Health Science University, replied on Twitter. “Most upsetting, actually, is death and disability from gun violence that is unparalleled in the world.”

The NRA posted its tweet just hours before a man shot and killed 12 people at a country-western bar in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

“I would like to graciously extend the invitation to the author of this tweet and anyone else from the NRA to join me at the hospital the next time I care for a child who has been hurt or killed by a gun that wasn’t safely stored or was an innocent bystander,” tweeted Jeannie Moorjani, a pediatric doctor in Orlando.

Court Strikes Down Florida Law Barring Doctors From Discussing Guns With Patients

More physicians weighed in, often using the hashtag #ThisIsOurLane.

“Do you have any idea how many bullets I pull out of corpses weekly? This isn’t just my lane. It’s my f****** highway,” wrote forensic pathologist Judy Melinek, in a tweet that has gone viral.

A trauma surgeon in Utah tweeted a photo of his blue scrubs covered in blood. “Can’t post a patient photo,” he wrote, “so this is a selfie. This is what it looks like to #stayinmylane.”

The NRA’s criticism of the physicians’ position paper hinges in part on research studies cited by the ACP.

“The problem is that the ACP cites ‘studies’ that wouldn’t qualify as ‘evidence’ in any other debate,” the gun advocacy organization argued in an article posted at the NRA Institute for Legislative Action. “One cited study was focused on a single rural county in Iowa. Another was of 106 outpatients at a single clinic. The authors acknowledge evidence is limited but cite their own belief there is ‘enough evidence’ or simply argue the policy should be enacted anyway. Inconclusive evidence is not ‘enough evidence.’ Applying narrow findings to a larger population is not ‘enough evidence.'”

The paper’s co-author, ACP Senior Vice President of Governmental Affairs and Public Policy Robert Doherty, responded to the NRA’s criticism in a series of tweets.

“All of our recommendations are supported by a comprehensive review of research on the causes of gun violence, policies that could reduce it. Where the evidence is limited, we said so,” he wrote. “All of our recommendations were reviewed and approved by ACP physician-members who serve on our health policy committee, several of whom are gun owners.”

Doherty also noted that the paper calls for increased funding for research on gun violence.

How The NRA Worked To Stifle Gun Violence Research

For years, the NRA has lobbied to prevent the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from conducting research on gun violence. A spending bill passed in March of this year notes that the CDC has the authority to do research on the “causes” of gun violence. But it doesn’t change the 1996 law that mandates “none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) may be used to advocate or promote gun control.” The rule has had a chilling effect on gun research in the U.S. ever since.

Which makes the NRA’s criticism about physicians not having adequate research particularly frustrating to doctors like Melinek.

“We aren’t against the second amendment,” she told The Guardian. “What we are against is not researching, not putting effort into researching, and not putting the funding into researching what can be used to prevent gun violence and death, whether it’s trigger locks, security, training or the idea of requiring insurance and having people have insurance in case their gun is used to kill someone else. We need to have the research and we need to have the data to back it up, and right now that’s not happening.”

“We need to do something, and telling doctors to say in their own lane is not the way to do it,” she told the newspaper. “We’re the ones who have to deal with the consequences. We’re the ones who have to testify in court about the wounds. We’re the ones who have to talk to the family members. It breaks my heart, and it’s just another day in America.”

Dan Crenshaw, Navy SEAL And Congressman-elect, Takes To ‘SNL’ For A Teachable Moment

Nov 12, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Dan Crenshaw, Navy SEAL And Congressman-elect, Takes To ‘SNL’ For A Teachable Moment

In this Nov. 10, 2018 photo provided by NBC, Lt. Com. Dan Crenshaw, left, a congressman-elect from Texas, appears next to comedian Pete Davidson during Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update” in New York.

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In this Nov. 10, 2018 photo provided by NBC, Lt. Com. Dan Crenshaw, left, a congressman-elect from Texas, appears next to comedian Pete Davidson during Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update” in New York.

Will Heath/Will Heath/NBC via AP

Thirty years ago, Congress was more than half veterans — many from the World War Two generation. Recently, that number has hovered around 20 percent — a decline that some observers link to a loss of civil discourse and bipartisan compromise. With only about 1 percent of Americans serving, there’s also a gap of understanding between vets and civilians.

Which is what brings comedian Pete Davidson into this story.

Davidson made a joke on Saturday Night Live the weekend before Election Day, making fun of Texas Republican Dan Crenshaw for wearing a black eye-patch. Crenshaw lost his eye to a bomb-blast during his third combat deployment. He recovered, remained in active duty, and deployed twice more before a medical retirement in 2016. A year later, he returned to Texas and launched a bid for Congress.

Social media took umbrage on his behalf, but Crenshaw got the last laugh — as well as a chance to push a message he held throughout his run for Congress.

On Saturday, four days after he won his race, Crenshaw appeared next to Davidson on SNL, and after roasting the comedian with a bunch of prepared jokes, he accepted his apology. Crenshaw then offered up a lesson about civility in politics.

“The left and right can still agree on some things,” Crenshaw said, adding that “Americans can forgive one another. We can remember what brings us together as a country and still see the good in each other.”

The remark wasn’t out of character for Crenshaw, or for the dozens of other veterans who ran for Congress in this year’s midterm election. At least 16 new veterans were elected to the House, according to a tally by the University of San Francisco and the non-profit Veterans Campaign.

“What’s exciting about this group of vets that have won, is that they’ve committed to talk to each other, and get things done,” says former Marine Rye Barcott.

It’s not just rhetoric, Barcott said. He has the commitment in writing.

Barcott leads a superPAC called With Honor, which funded dozens of veteran candidates, both Republicans and Democrats. All those candidates, including Crenshaw, signed a pledge to meet with members of the opposite party, co-sponsor legislation and serve with civility.

“The core of the mission is serving in a cross partisan way. Lord knows we need it right now,” said Barcott.

As rare as that sort of cooperation is these days, Democratic representative-elect Mikie Sherrill said it’s what her constituents in New Jersey told her they wanted.

“Certainly the issues that people are concerned about are tax reform, health care reform, infrastructure spending,” said the former Navy pilot, “But then the narrative beyond all that is, you know, ‘Mikie, can you just promise me that you’re going to go try to get Congress to work again, that you’re going to put the country first and not spend all your time and effort fighting Republicans?’ “

Sherrill is one of several female veterans heading to Congress in January and a notable number of female combat pilots who ran, including MJ Hegar of Texas, who flew medivac choppers in Afghanistan; Amy McGrath of Kentucky, who flew jets in Iraq and Afghanistan; and Arizona’s Martha McSally, who flew a fighter jet in Iraq. Hegar and McGrath both lost narrowly. Votes are still being counted in McSally’s Senate race against Democrat Kyrsten Sinema.

Sherrill says vets may have been brave, or naïve, or both about running.

“A lot of the veterans myself included that stood up to run this cycle, ran in districts that most people said at the beginning … were unwinnable,” she said.

Sherrill flipped a seat in New Jersey’s 11th district that had been controlled by the GOP since 1982.

Americans rank Congress among the least respected public institutions, but hold the military in the highest regard, according to polls. Candidates like Crenshaw and Sherrill say their military service has fostered a baseline of respect and pragmatism they hope will spread in the next Congress — and continue as a new generation of veterans begins to enter politics.

Turkey Says Recordings Of Jamal Khashoggi’s Murder Have Been Given To The U.S.

Nov 11, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Turkey Says Recordings Of Jamal Khashoggi’s Murder Have Been Given To The U.S.

Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan says audio recordings of Jamal Khashoggi’s murder have been released to the U.S. Khashoggi was a journalist and critic of Saudi Arabia’s government.

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Turkey’s President Tayyip Erdogan says audio recordings of Jamal Khashoggi’s murder have been released to the U.S. Khashoggi was a journalist and critic of Saudi Arabia’s government.

Burhan Ozbilici/AP

Turkey says it has handed audio recordings of Jamal Khashoggi’s death to the United States and other Western countries. According to Turkish officials, the recordings prove that Khashoggi’s murder was premeditated.

Last month, Gina Haspel, director of the C.I.A., traveled to Turkey, where officials reportedly played the audio recordings for her. It is unclear if copies of the recordings were later physically handed over to the U.S., or if U.S. officials were allowed only to listen to the recordings. According to The New York Times, “For the C.I.A., possessing a physical copy of the tape would be important to verify its authenticity, determine how it was made and analyze its contents independently.”

Khashoggi, a journalist and critic of Saudi Arabia’s government, was killed after visiting the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain a marriage license last month. Saudi officials have admitted its operatives killed Khashoggi, but denied involvement by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

At a news conference in Ankara, Turkey on Saturday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, “We gave them the tapes. We gave them to Saudi Arabia, to America, to the Germans, the French, to the British, to all of them.”

He also insisted Saudi Arabia step up transparency in its investigation of Khashoggi’s death. “Saudi Arabia must respond to our good will, and be just, and clear themselves of this stain,” Erdogan said.

The statement by Erdogan puts pressure on U.S.-Saudi relations. The U.S. has levied sanctions on some Saudi Arabians directly linked to Khashoggi’s killing, but so far has not imposed tougher sanctions on the country.

In recent weeks, U.S. officials, including Defense Secretary James Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have called on Saudi Arabia to end airstrikes on Yemen, and are reportedly suspending mid-air refueling of Saudi Arabian military aircraft involved in the airstrikes.

In a statement Friday, Saudi Arabia took responsibility for the decision. “In consultation with the United States” it had requested the end of in-flight refueling, Saudi Arabia said. “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the member countries of the Coalition to Support legitimacy in Yemen, continually pursue improvements to military professionalism and self-sufficiency,” the statement read, according to NBC News.

Saudi Arabia’s war with Yemeni rebels began four years ago, and has evolved into a humanitarian crisis, with at least 10,000 killed, according to U.N. estimates, and a resulting famine devastating the country. U.S. support for the Saudi-led war has faced growing criticism.

Activist Shaun King On Why He’s Reviving Frederick Douglass’ ‘North Star’ Paper

Nov 11, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Activist Shaun King On Why He’s Reviving Frederick Douglass’ ‘North Star’ Paper

Activist and journalist Shaun King plans to revive The North Star, originally an abolitionist newspaper published by Frederick Douglass in 1847. He says it’s necessary to fight back against injustices in today’s world.

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Activist and journalist Shaun King plans to revive The North Star, originally an abolitionist newspaper published by Frederick Douglass in 1847. He says it’s necessary to fight back against injustices in today’s world.

Courtesy of Shaun King

In 1874, Frederick Douglass published one of the most influential antislavery newspapers of its time — The North Star. In the newspaper’s first issue, the abolitionist, himself formerly enslaved wrote, “It is evident that we must be our own representatives and advocates, not exclusively, but peculiarly, — not distinct from, but in connection with — our white friends.”

Now, 171 years later, activist and journalist Shaun King and his friend Ben Dixon plan to revive the paper next week. King says that it’s “necessary for where we’re going and where we are as a country on issues of voting rights, police brutality, mass incarceration,” that people have a news source like The North Star. He says he wants people to have the information they need in order to take a stand on these issues.

'Frederick Douglass' Is An Extended Meditation On The Legend's Self-Invention

Unlike The North Star that Douglass knew, King says the new team plans to bring the paper into the modern age and publish on the Internet while also providing its audience podcasts, video news services and mobile apps for both iPhone and Android. King also said that the team is working to eventually create a version of the news geared toward children.

King spoke with NPR ahead of the newspaper’s official launch about why he decided now was the time, what Douglass’ descendants think and who he hopes to reach with the content.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Interview Highlights

On why The North Star needs to be revived

A huge reason why we really wanted to start something new is that there are great outlets that I love and read and subscribe to, but they weren’t necessarily created for us and they weren’t necessarily created to fight back against some of the injustice and problems that we see. What Frederick Douglas and Dr. Martin Delany knew all the way back in 1847 was that for 250 years in the United States newspapers really were on the fence about slavery, and what they knew was that we need a periodical that we manage that we curate that isn’t on the fence, that’s strongly against it.

There is kind of this spirit in journalism to tell both sides of the story and to just let the listeners choose what they want to choose, and I understand that and there’s a place for it, but on some issues we really do need to take a stand.We felt like instead of starting over from scratch, it would also give us an opportunity to revitalize something beautiful that was started generations ago.

Frederick Douglass On How Slave Owners Used Food As A Weapon Of Control

On how The North Star will differ from other outlets with strong points of view

There are many great outlets that we love and respect, but The North Star really is going to be a hard news outlet with reporters and journalists, White House correspondents. I think we’ll be hard news with some cultural commentary.

On what the descendants of Frederick Douglass think

First we didn’t know if we were going to revitalize something old, but we really thought part of being able to do that was going to give ourselves the opportunity to tell like “Hey, we have a rich journalistic tradition that goes back hundreds of years.” When we settled on the name and identity of The North Star, we found the family, reached out and talked with them for weeks and they really love the idea.

The revived North Star is set to launch next week. Activist and journalist Shaun King said in his announcement on Medium that it will be “a news app, a full news website, a collection of podcasts, and an online nightly news broadcast.”

Courtesy of Shaun King


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Courtesy of Shaun King

The revived North Star is set to launch next week. Activist and journalist Shaun King said in his announcement on Medium that it will be “a news app, a full news website, a collection of podcasts, and an online nightly news broadcast.”

Courtesy of Shaun King

On who this content is for

I think what irritates both conservatives and liberals alike is when news outlets pretend that they don’t have an agenda, but then clearly do, be it in the editorial decisions they make and the guests they have and the material that they cover. We’re really going to wear our heart and soul and beliefs on our sleeve. I’m not sure many conservatives who are so deeply entrenched in their own views would come to our platform and be persuaded. I used to believe that. For most of my adult life, I saw myself as a bridge builder and I still have the heart of a bridge builder, but our time now is so partisan. People get their information in such silos that I’ve found more and more and more it’s just difficult to build those bridges.

I used to think this notion of preaching to the choir was a problem and we kind of use it in a bit of a pejorative sense … but I’ve actually grown to adopt that perspective that the choir needs good preaching — they need good information. They need good tools and insight. So while we may be a silo, we’ll be an informative one. But we also have a heart to speak to people outside of it. It’s not that we won’t be in that silo, it’s just that they’ve gotten much harder shells and exteriors than they used to.

Weekend All Things Considered intern Lilly Quiroz produced the audio for this interview and NPR’s Natalie Winston edited. Wynne Davis adapted it for Web.

Driver Who Slammed Into Church Bus Sentenced To 55 Years In Prison

Nov 10, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Driver Who Slammed Into Church Bus Sentenced To 55 Years In Prison

Jack Dillon Young of Leakey, Texas, was sentenced on Friday to 55 years in prison for driving into a church bus in South Texas last year, killing 13 people on the bus.

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Jack Dillon Young of Leakey, Texas, was sentenced on Friday to 55 years in prison for driving into a church bus in South Texas last year, killing 13 people on the bus.

Uvalde County Jail /AP

The driver of a pickup truck that slammed into a church bus in March 2017, killing 13 passengers, was sentenced to 55 years in prison on Friday.

Jack Dillon Young had smoked marijuana and misused a prescription antidepressant, prior to the head-on collision with the bus that was carrying choir members from the First Baptist Church in New Braunfels, Texas, MySanAntonio.com reported. The fatal accident happened about 75 miles west of San Antonio.

The 21-year-old’s defense attorney called for mercy from the judge and said Young’s prescription drug medications were not properly monitored by doctors, according to The Associated Press.

The church choir was returning from a retreat in Leakey, where Young lived at the time. The only passenger who survived was sitting farthest from the point of impact.

Jack Dillon Young the driver of the pickup truck pictured in this March 31, 2017 file photo provided by National Transportation Safety Board, was sentenced to 55 years in prison on Friday. Young killed 13 people in the crash on March 29, 2017 near Garner State Park in Texas.

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Jack Dillon Young the driver of the pickup truck pictured in this March 31, 2017 file photo provided by National Transportation Safety Board, was sentenced to 55 years in prison on Friday. Young killed 13 people in the crash on March 29, 2017 near Garner State Park in Texas.

Jennifer Morrison/AP

Young and members of his family testified during the three-day sentencing hearing.

Young’s testimony included apologies to the victims’ families. “I can’t put into words how sorry I am,” he said, according to KFDM-TV.

“I wish every day that it was me,” he added. “It should not have been them. If I could, I would in a heartbeat. I wish I could describe to y’all how much I’m sorry, but I can’t. Nothing will ever do it justice. I’m sorry for what I took from y’all.”

According to the AP, “Young pleaded no contest in June to 13 counts of intoxication manslaughter and one count of intoxication assault.”

He had faced up to 270 years in prison.

Man Suspected Of Mailing Pipe Bombs Is Indicted And Faces Life In Prison

Nov 10, 2018   //   by Administrator   //   World News  //  Comments Off on Man Suspected Of Mailing Pipe Bombs Is Indicted And Faces Life In Prison

Pipe bomb suspect Cesar Sayoc, who raised his arm to swear to the truth of his statement on Tuesday in New York, received a 30-count indictment on Friday.

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Pipe bomb suspect Cesar Sayoc, who raised his arm to swear to the truth of his statement on Tuesday in New York, received a 30-count indictment on Friday.

Elizabeth Williams/AP

The man accused of mailing a series of pipe bombs across the country to critics of President Trump — including former President Barack Obama, liberal philanthropist George Soros, actor Robert De Niro and CNN offices — was indicted on Friday.

Cesar Sayoc of Aventura, Fla., was charged in Manhattan federal court in a 30-count indictment.

Prosecutors say that he sent 16 improvised explosive devices to 13 people through the U.S. mail with an intent to “kill, injure and intimidate.” The indictment covers packages mailed to victims in the southern district of New York.

Judge Orders Pipe Bomb Suspect Cesar Sayoc Held Without Bail

The 56-year-old was charged with the use of a weapon of mass destruction, interstate transportation of an explosive, threatening interstate commerce, illegally mailing an explosive, carrying an explosive while committing a felony, and using a destructive device to engage in a violent crime.

“He faces life in prison,” spokesman Nicholas Biase of the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of New York told NPR.

And prosecutors believe the evidence of his alleged involvement abounds.

Between Oct. 22 and Nov. 2, the FBI and the U.S. Postal Service recovered all 16 padded manila envelopes containing IEDs, prosecutors said. The envelopes bore similar features, in addition to a clock, wiring and PVC pipe packed with explosive material: they included a return addressee of “Debbie Wasserman Shultz” – a congresswoman and former chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee — and six self-adhesive postage stamps with the American flag.

DNA, including fingerprints on two envelopes, linked Sayoc to many of the devices, prosecutors said. They also identified him by studying his social media accounts, analyzing the contents of the posts as well as their misspellings.

He was arrested Oct. 26 at an auto parts store, and charged with five federal crimes, including transporting explosives across state lines, threatening former presidents and assaulting federal officials.

Prior to the arrest, the registered Republican was living in a van plastered with pro-Trump and anti-Democrat stickers. One image showed the president standing on a tank with a rifle, complete with United States flag and fireworks.

The FBI seized a laptop from the van which contained lists of mailing addresses that matched labels on the envelopes, according to prosecutors. Authorities also said they found Internet searches for victims’ addresses on his cell phone. Those queries started as early as July.

Sayoc had also amassed a list of more than 100 potential targets.

He was already in the criminal justice system due to prior arrests in Florida, NPR’s Gabriela Saldivia reported.

According to the indictment, targeted victims, including Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, former CIA Director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, also received a photograph of themselves with a red “X” on it.

No one was injured, as the bombs failed to detonate.

In a written statement, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman called the pipe bomb mailings “an assault on a nation that values the rule of law, a free press, and tolerance of differences without rancor or resort to violence.” He added that it took just five days to identify and arrest Sayoc. “He now faces justice from a nation of laws,” Berman said.

Mail Bomb Suspect Reportedly Had List Of More Than 100 Potential Targets

Sayoc appeared in New York earlier this week after being transferred from Florida. He is being held without bail.

The case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff.

Sayoc’s attorney, Sarah Baumgartel, did not immediately respond to NPR’s requests for comment.

Debra Gureghian, who worked with Sayoc at the New River Pizza where he was a delivery driver, told NPR’s Greg Myre that he openly spoke about the elimination of Jewish, gay and black people. “He would start talking about Hitler. He loved Hitler – loved Hitler,” she said.

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