Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston



Saturday, June 27, 2020

Republican Joe Scarborough

“Russians are paying Islamic radicals to kill American troops in Afghanistan. Donald Trump has known about Putin targeting Americans for months and has refused to even condemn Russia diplomatically. What Republican senator will speak out against this shocking dereliction of duty?”

Conservative Steve Schmidt

“Putin put contracts on American soldiers. He paid bounties for dead American soldiers and Trump did nothing. 

This is a low moment unequaled in all of our history. 

This President won’t defend America. 

He is a grotesque and vile man. He is the weakest and worst President ever!”

Friday, June 26, 2020


In the middle of a pandemic, the Trump administration is set to take away healthcare from millions of Americans. The cruelty of that is monstrous and unimaginable, but a fact.

What will Americans do without healthcare in a time of a pandemic that is not lessening but actually increasing? 

Yesterday the US recorded the highest number of Covid-19 cases since April, almost 40,000.

And remember that Trump and his family have the best healthcare as do the rest of the GOPers in Congress who are  working to take it away from millions and millions of vulnerable Americans in a time of plague.

Trump administration asks Supreme Court to strike down Obamacare

June 26, 2020 at 12:00 a.m. EDT 

The Trump administration asked the Supreme Court late on Thursday to overturn the Affordable Care Act, telling the court that “the entire ACA must fall.” The administration’s argument comes as hundreds of thousands of Americans have turned to the government program for health care as they’ve lost jobs during the coronavirus pandemic.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

This is America under Trump's reckless leadership:


Tuesday, June 23, 2020

The Harlem Globetrotters and Tennis Star James Blake

h/t Dave Miller:

Fred “Curly” Neal (left) admires Meadowlark Lemon’s adroit ball-handling in the CBS Sports special, Harlem Globetrotters: The Road to Mexico. CBS/Getty Images

"Globetrotters Louis Dunbar, Ovie Dotson and Jimmy Blacklock were stopped by Santa Barbara, Calif.,  police in November 1983 during a robbery investigation only because they were black.

 They testified they were returning to their hotel from a downtown shopping trip to prepare for a game the evening of Nov. 13, when police stopped their taxi and they were forced out of the car at gunpoint, handcuffed, searched and detained for about 30 minutes.

 They were stopped in connection with a $300,000 heist at a jewelry store in nearby Montecito earlier that day in which at least one person was killed. They were released after the shop owner told police they were not the robbers. The famed, all-black comedy basketball team had just arrived in town after a two-month tour of the Far East and Australia."

And this:

"From one team member to the next, the Globetrotters who played during the Jim Crow era can share stories of their struggles. Curly Neal, a Globetrotter from 1963-1985, is one of the most recognized team members. He was awarded the Legends honor in 1993 for making a major contribution to the success and the development of the Globetrotters organization. He penned an op-ed piece for USA Today in which he recalled one of the multiple racial incidents the team experienced: 

 “I can still remember hearing the story from the great Tex Harrison. Fifty-nine years ago, the Harlem Globetrotters had just played in front of 18,000 fans in northern Florida — most of them white — and tried to grab a bite to eat at a restaurant. The restaurant wouldn’t let the team in. Wouldn’t serve them. They went to a hotel next. They were turned away. Later, they found out that a performing chimpanzee sponsored by a local bowling alley got a big fancy suite.” 

 Sweet Lou Dunbar, who joined the Globetrotters in 1977 after playing in the semipro league with the Houston Rockets, said black families would house the team when they couldn’t find a hotel. But Globetrotter Hallie Bryant, who received the Legends distinction in 2009, remembers having to resort to extreme measures when the team couldn’t find a hotel or black family in Nebraska. 

 “When the team played in a Nebraska town that only had ‘white hotels,’ the team had to sleep in the county jail; players often had to bunk together in unheated quarters,” said Bryant, who spent 27 years in the organization as player, official spokesperson and director of team personnel. And with separate hotels for black and whites, the Globetrotters had to double up on games because audiences were logistically segregated. 

 “They had to play for two different audiences; for the white audience and [then] they had to go across the track and play for the black audience,” Dunbar said. While the Globetrotters were treated as second-class citizens at home, overseas, they were treated like royalty."

Retired tennis star, James Blake:

Retired tennis star James Blake in an appearance on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon opened up about a scary run-in he had with police while he was on his way to the U.S. Open in 2015.

"I was waiting for the car to take me to the Open and just waiting outside my hotel when an officer ran up and just ran into me, slammed me into the wall and threw me on the ground, handcuffed me and had me in custody for about 10 to 15 minutes without me doing anything," Blake told host Jimmy Fallon. "I was standing there just ready to get to the Open and they said I looked like a suspect. Turns out, the suspect was for a credit card scam they were running. Nothing violent. No reason, in my opinion, to necessarily tackle someone."

Blake — who had 10 career singles wins and climbed as high as No. 4 in the world rankings — said the officer pinned him down to the pavement and put his knee in his back while he was being handcuffed and instantly told him, “Shut your mouth. Put your arms back.” “

At that point, it's 2015, there were still already plenty of signs in the media, plenty of cases of police violence of Black men and women being killed or harmed by the police,” Blake said. “So, my first thought is back to the conversation I had with my dad, back to all those instances and my first statement was, 

‘I'm complying 100 percent. Whatever you say, I'm complying 100 percent.’ “Because I know I don't want to be a stat and everything else can be figured out afterwards, you know, any legal battles, their mistake in identity. Whatever it is, it can be figured out later. But, you just comply. “It's really a sad situation. It's really a sad state of affairs that there has to be that set of rules and every black man in this country pretty much knows those — that you have to be completely emasculated. You have to do whatever they say.”

Sunday, June 21, 2020

George Stinney, Jr.

"WE REMEMBER June of 1944 George Stinney Jr. was the youngest person to be sentenced to death in the 20th century in the United States. 

He was only 14 years old when he was executed in an electric chair. 

During his trial, even on the day of his execution, he always carried a bible in his hands, claiming to be innocent. He was accused of killing two white girls, 11-Year-old Betty, and Mary of 7, the bodies were found near the house where the teenager resided with his parents. At that time, all members of the jury were white. The trial lasted only 2 hours, and the sentence was dictated 10 minutes later. 

The Boy's parents were threatened, and prevented from being present in the courtroom, and subsequently expelled from that city. 

Before the execution, George spent 81 days in prison without being able to see his parents. He was held in solitary confinement, 80 miles from his city. He was alone without the presence of his parents or a lawyer. He was electrocuted with 5,380 volts in his head. 

70 years later, his INNOCENCE was finally proven by a judge in South Carolina. George was innocent, later to find out Police Officers had set him up looking to blame someone for the murders. May his innocent soul rest in peace." --George Lone Elk       #RIPGeorge #BlackLivesMatter

Friday, June 19, 2020



Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.

From its Galveston, Texas origin in 1865, the observance of June 19th as the African American Emancipation Day has spread across the United States and beyond.

Today Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement. It is a day, a week, and in some areas a month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings. It is a time for reflection and rejoicing. It is a time for assessment, self-improvement and for planning the future. Its growing popularity signifies a level of maturity and dignity in America long over due.

In cities across the country, people of all races, nationalities and religions are joining hands to truthfully acknowledge a period in our history that shaped and continues to influence our society today. Sensitized to the conditions and experiences of others, only then can we make significant and lasting improvements in our society.

One of General Granger’s first orders of business was to read to the people of Texas, General Order Number 3 which began most significantly with: 

 "The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired laborer."


Franklin County, Ohio, will acknowledge Juneteenth as a paid holiday starting 2021:

"June 19th celebrates the abolition of slavery in America, and the recognition that African Americans are entitled to equal rights in this country they helped to build. Yet 155 years later, their ancestors and other people of color are faced with unequal opportunity in pursuit of the American Dream. On this Juneteenth, we recognize the struggle that so many have endured and are still enduring to help us realize the dream of a more perfect union, and we stand with our residents in the ongoing fight for racial equity." -- Franklin County, Ohio, Board of Commissioners

Juneteenth has never been a celebration of victory, or an acceptance of the way things are. It's a celebration of progress. It's an affirmation that despite the most painful parts of our history, change is possible––and there is still so much work to do.

Juneteenth should be made a national holiday.

Thursday, June 18, 2020

The Greenwood Massacre

Greenwood, 1921: 

One of the worst race massacres in American historyIn 1921, a thriving black neighborhood in Tulsa, Oklahoma, burned, leaving hundreds dead.

Smoke rises north of Greenwood Avenue from Hartford Avenue, in Tulsa, Okla. on June 1, 1921. Images from The University of Tulsa's McFarlin Library archives show scenes from the Tulsa race massacre of 1921 when a white mob destroyed the 35-block "Black Wall Street" - a thriving business district in Tulsa. The number of deaths has never been confirmed, but estimates vary from about three dozen to 300 or more. The University of Tulsa, McFarlin Library Archives

During the Tulsa Race Massacre (also known as the Tulsa Race Riot), which occurred over 18 hours on May 31-June 1, 1921, a white mob attacked residents, homes and businesses in the predominantly black Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

The event remains one of the worst incidents of racial violence in U.S. history, and one of the least-known: News reports were largely squelched, despite the fact that hundreds of people were killed and thousands left homeless. 

Gov. Stitt says he, Sen. Lankford now recommending Trump not visit Greenwood District

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

AFRICAN DODGER and other popular carnival games in America

"The history of the United States is both scarred and partly defined by racial subjugation and violence, a legacy with an almost endless litany of horrific incidents and phenomena. In February 2018, many thousands of Americans were confronted — some for the first time — with images of a once-popular fairground game with the extremely offensive name shown below:

(I have not found any hard evidence that actual babies were used as targets. But it wouldn't surprise me to read that if it were true.)

This image is authentic and shows a 1942 YMCA brochure for Camp Minikani, a children’s summer camp in Wisconsin. “Hit the Nigger Baby” (also known as “The Black Dodger” or “Hit the Coon”) was a common fairground game in which players hurled objects (usually eggs or baseballs) at African-American people serving as human targets.

According to the Jim Crow Museum at Ferris State University, “It sounds like a common carnival target game, but there was one unsettling part of the game, namely, the game’s target was a real live human being, a ‘negro’ human being.”

 In our research of newspaper archives, we found evidence of the game’s being staged as early as the 1880s, and as recently as the 1950s. In several instances, the stand received top billing in newspaper bulletins promoting upcoming carnivals and fairs, along with the shooting gallery and fish pond.

In July 1948, a “soldiers reunion and homecoming” held in the public square in Brownstown, Indiana, was advertised in the Jackson County Banner with the exhortation “Make this big week your vacation time — Bring the family — meet old friends — Hit the ‘Nigger Babies’ — Eat Hot Dogs — Join the Fun.”

 In November 1935, the Iowa newspaper Lake Park News recounted a recent successful high school carnival which featured a musical show and a “thrilling athletic event,” touting that “After this show, the crowd enjoyed themselves in visiting the various booths or trying to ring a duck’s neck in a tank of water or hit the nigger baby.”

 One vignette from the St. Petersburg Times gives a particularly disturbing sense of the popularity of the game, describing how some residents of St. Petersburg, Florida, celebrated Labor Day in 1925: “Who can hit the nigger? Buy three chances to hit the nigger.”

With all the vigor of a professional ballyhoo man, the laborer drew the crowd to the side attraction at the Labor Day celebration at Waterfront park Monday afternoon. A grinning negro boy, his head stuck through the opening of a sheet, awaited the battery of eggs thrown at him by the majority of St. Petersburg’s star pitchers. From the width of his grin, he enjoyed it almost as much as the crowd — one time where the goat wasn’t a goat, for only a few of the eggs found their mark.

 “Take it easy, go slow, take your time. One, two gone, three — try again?” Thus the man in charge, as contestant after contestant tried his luck — “his,” as the women only looked on and laughed at the men’s attempts. One boy was determined, and amid the jeers of the crowd, took three tries, missing them all until his last. The crowd grew larger and larger until the ball game started, when it rapidly dwindled, the Tampa-St.Petersburg game being more of an attraction than even “hit the nigger baby.”

As could be expected, injuries resulting from this “game” were common, especially when baseballs were used instead of eggs. In 1887, the New York Sun recounted a bad day at the Westchester County Fair by noting that “Everything seemed to go wrong. The African Dodger was disabled. A very hard ball had explored a very soft region of his cranium and he was laid up for repairs.”

The Sun also reported, with no apparent concern for the injured man, that “another negro was procured to do the African Dodger’s act.”

Based on newspaper reports, it appears that some African-American men may have been killed during the course of these games. In 1908, for example, an “African Dodger” named William White was the target of carnival-goers in Hanover, Pennsylvania, where a squad of baseball players took turns throwing hard balls at his head. White, according to the Philadelphia Record, was “subjected to a fusilade of balls” but “took the punishment courageously.” Almost as an afterthought, the Record observed later in the piece that “He was compelled to retire soon afterward with internal injuries which may prove fatal.”

 Notwithstanding the horrific brutality of the game, we did not find any evidence of actual infants being used as targets, despite what the name of the game suggests."

See also:

Black men are target practice: 

America's grotesque history of racist gamesOur country's more perverse forms of leisure and recreation are instructive about the way white supremacy works

The African Dodger

Tuesday, June 16, 2020


Meet Ruby Bridges. 

At 6 years old, she was the first Black child to attend an all-White elementary school in the south. 

For her to attend school her first day, men with guns had to make way through a crowd of grown men and women screaming “nigger”, threatening her life and waving confederate flags. 

Nearly all the teachers abandoned the school except for one. In her classroom, all her classmates abandoned the class refusing to sit with the 6 yr old. 

For the entire school year, Ruby went to school to a classroom that was just her and the one teacher that didn't refuse her. She wouldn't eat any food that wasn’t pre-packaged and sealed because White protestors frequently threatened to poison her like a rat. 

Ruby is only 65 years old today, younger than most of your parents. 

If you think America doesn’t have dramatic and urgent work to do on racial equity, you still have blinders on.

"On the morning of November 14, 1960, federal marshals drove Bridges and her mother five blocks to her new school. While in the car, one of the men explained that when they arrived at the school, two marshals would walk in front of Bridges and two would be behind her.

 When Bridges and the federal marshals arrived at the school, large crowds of people were gathered in front yelling and throwing objects. There were barricades set up, and policemen were everywhere. Bridges, in her innocence, first believed it was like a Mardi Gras celebration.

When she entered the school under the protection of the federal marshals, she was immediately escorted to the principal's office and spent the entire day there.

Only one teacher, Barbara Henry, agreed to teach Bridges. She was from Boston and a new teacher to the school. 

"Mrs. Henry," as Bridges would call her even as an adult, greeted her with open arms. Bridges was the only student in Henry's class because parents pulled or threatened to pull their children from Bridges' class and send them to other schools. 

For a full year, Henry and Bridges sat side by side at two desks, working on Bridges' lessons. Henry was loving and supportive of Bridges, helping her not only with her studies but also with the difficult experience of being ostracized. 

 Bridges' first few weeks at Frantz School were not easy ones. Several times she was confronted with blatant racism in full view of her federal escorts.

On her second day of school, a woman threatened to poison her. After this, the federal marshals allowed her to only eat food from home. On another day, she was "greeted" by a woman displaying a black doll in a wooden coffin." 


Monday, June 15, 2020

Miles Davis

 Miles Davis arrested outside Birdland on August 25, 1959. Miles was standing on the sidewalk between sets for an Armed Forces Day broadcast on Voice of America and was told to "move along" by NYC cop Gerald Kildduff. 

Miles didn't budge. A plainclothes detective came up on him from behind and hit Davis on the head with his blackjack, dropping him to the ground. He took ten stitches in his scalp, was jailed, charged with disorderly conduct and assault. His arrest was later ruled illegal and a "travesty of justice" by a three-judge panel. #BlackLivesMatter

Friday, June 12, 2020

Trump and his cultists plan rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Juneteenth.

The guy who claims he's done more for African-Americans than any other president in American history has planned a bund rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, on Juneteenth?

Do any of his staff have any acquaintance with history? Apparently not. Apparently they've never heard of Juneteenth or the Tulsa Massacre.

So the Stable Genius who brags that he's done more for the African-American community than any other president in American history just gave that community a very big FU by planning his bund rally on one of the most important days for the African-American community. And that doesn't even take into account the fact that he's forcing this white supremacist  rally on his unfortunate supporters during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Trump's people are now requiring the mobs that will attend his rallies to sign an agreement stating they will not sue the Trump campaign should they come down with Covid-19. 

Here's the agreement wording:

By clicking register below, you are acknowledging that an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 exists in any public place where people are present. By attending the Rally, you and any guests voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19 and agree not to hold Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.; BOK Center; ASM Global; or any of their affiliates, directors, officers, employees, agents, contractors, or volunteers liable for any illness or injury,” the legal notice reads.

So. By signing the agreement Trump cultists are essentially saying that even if they get Covid-19 or become infected and pass it along to their loved ones and friends, it will all be worth it just so they can be in the presence of The Stable Genius who emerged from hiding in his bunker and gassed his own citizens for a fake photo-op holding a Bible which he never reads!

“This isn’t just a wink to white supremacists — he’s throwing them a welcome home party,” --Kamala Harris

Black leaders call Trump’s Juneteenth rally in Tulsa ‘a slap in the face’

Thursday, June 11, 2020

The only way the Republicans can win elections is by cheating.


Republican senators vote to strip Confederate names from Army bases, defying Trump!

General Milley Apologizes for Role in Trump Photo Op: 

‘I Should Not Have Been There’President Trump’s walk across Lafayette Square, current and former military leaders say, has sparked a moment of reckoning in the military.

"Last week, Defense Secretary Mark Esper called a news conference to announce that he, too, opposed invoking the 1807 Insurrection Act to deploy active-duty troops across the country to quell protests, a line that a number of American military officials say they will not cross. 

 The president*, aides say, has been furious with both Mr. Esper and General Milley since then."


If this happened in George yesterday, it will happen again in other states.

The only way the Republicans can win is by cheating

Atlanta, home to the largest Black communities in Georgia, closed 80 polling places since March — 

Now, 16,000 active registered voters from five precincts had to vote at ONE polling place for Tuesday’s primaries

With already long lines due to these poll closures, voting machines in multiple precincts were’t even working, causing even longer waits 

After waiting in line for upwards of two hours, many voters have given up and left 

Does this sound like a free and fair election to you? 

If we don’t act now, the undemocratic debacle playing out in Georgia will happen in every state come November 3rd. 

Republicans have no response to tackle racism

"[Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina] would have to tell fellow Republicans that they will never have credibility on race so long as they scurry away and refuse to condemn President Trump’s insane suggestion that 75-year-old protester Martin Gugino, whose skull was cracked when pushed to the ground by a police officer in Buffalo was part of some sort of setup with antifa activists. Scott would need to tell Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) that objecting to anti-lynching legislation in 2020 is as grotesque an example of racial callousness as one could imagine. Scott would also be compelled to tell his colleagues that in refusing to take up the Heroes Act, which would fund testing and state and local governments, they are once against disproportionately harming African Americans — just as their ludicrous effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act in the middle of a pandemic would do. He would be obliged to tell Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) that proposing the military be unleashed on civilians and give “no quarter” is akin to recommending the killing of protesters, who are predominately African American. 

 Scott would also have to tell Republicans to cease support for voter suppression techniques — including opposition to mail-in voting, voter ID laws (in the absence of significant fraud), denial of sufficient polling facilities in African American neighborhoods, gerrymandering (to limit the voting power of nonwhites) and voter roll purges. 


"Scott cannot fashion a remotely adequate Republican response to Floyd’s killing because Trump and his Republican Party are a central part of and, indeed, aggravate the problem — along with their cadre of right-wing white nationalists and run-of-the-mill apologists. The American response to racism requires the political obliteration of the Republican Party as we know it. That starts with voting them out of office, up and down the ballot, in November."

Republicans talking like morons:

Ohio GOP lawmaker asks if ‘colored population’ is hard hit by covid-19 because they don’t ‘wash their hands as well

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Joe Biden isn't acting presidential.

Biden’s response to the George Floyd protests isn’t presidential. He should be tweeting more insults!

Rex Huppke:

As an astute observer of present-day presidential politics, I’m baffled by the way presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is behaving. 

 The most immediate example, of course, is that he spent time Monday traveling to Texas to meet in person with the family of George Floyd. He was the black man killed by a white Minneapolis police officer, setting off nationwide protests over police brutality and racism. 

 What kind of modern-day leader shows empathy during a time of national crisis? If Biden had an ounce of presidential timber he would have been in a secure location, surrounded by armed guards and newly erected fencing, tweeting about his own “GREATNESS” and calling his political opponents “Crazy!” 

 Even worse, Biden has yet to tweet the words “LAW & ORDER” accompanied by no specific context or policy proposals. Donald Trump, our current president and the model for cutting-edge presidential behavior, has tweeted those words a dozen times in the past week. That, former Vice President Biden, is a thing we Americans have come to recognize as “leadership.” Maybe try it some time.  

Indeed, while Biden spent time meeting privately Monday with Floyd’s family before the 46-year-old man’s funeral in Texas, he failed to label Americans exercising their right to protest as “thugs” or “terrorists.” He didn’t attempt to paint people appalled by systemic racism as part of a shadowy group known as antifa, which isn’t actually an organized group but sounds scary and is probably coming to destroy your family farm or rage-stomp your begonias...

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Thursday, June 4, 2020

"We Can Unite Without Him"

Jim Mattis blasts Trump in message that defends protesters, says president ‘tries to divide us’

“Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead, he tries to divide us,” Mattis wrote in a statement published by the Atlantic. 

 “We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership," he continued. “We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children.”


Mattis wrote that he has watched events this week “angry and appalled," and said protesters are right to demand equal justice under the law. 

 “It is a wholesome and unifying demand — one that all of us should be able to get behind,” he wrote. “We must not be distracted by a small number of lawbreakers. The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values — our values as people and our values as a nation.”

I wonder what the usual Trump cultists/apologists will have to say about this from retired General Jim Mattis. The GOP has always been in love with the military and always supported them in all ways.

What do Trump's cultists think of this? Will they denigrate the general? Will they call him a "Never Trumper?" Will they ignore his statements about a man he watched day in and day out destroy and debauch America?

Will they take Trump's side against a man who devoted his life in service to his country? Who fought and served America?

I'm betting they will ignore it. Ignore once again an American who puts country above party -- Trump who pretends to be a president. And failed at even pretending.

President Obama Speaks to America

Words from a real president:


Wednesday, June 3, 2020


3 more cops charged in George Floyd death, other officer’s murder charge upgraded, Sen. Klobuchar says

Three former Minneapolis police officers will be criminally charged Wednesday in connection with the death of George Floyd, Sen. Amy Klobuchar wrote in a post on Twitter. 

In addition, Derek Chauvin, a former officer who had already been charged with third-degree murder in the case, will now be charged with second-degree murder, the Minnesota Democrat wrote. 

Klobuchar did not detail the charges that Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison plans to file against the three other ex-cops: Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng and Thomas Lane.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020


"This is an awful man, waving a book he hasn’t read, in front of a church he doesn’t attend, invoking laws he doesn’t understand, against fellow Americans he sees as enemies, wielding a military he dodged serving, to protect power he gained via accepting foreign interference, exploiting fear and anger he loves to stoke, after failing to address a pandemic he was warned about, and building it all on a bed of constant lies and childish inanity.” -- Robert Hendrickson, Rector at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church in Tucson, Arizona


GOP Sen Ben Sasse slams Trump hard: 

“I’m against clearing out a peaceful protest for a photo op that treats the Word of God as a political prop."

Are We For America -- or Trump?

“We long ago lost sight of normal, but this was a singularly immoral act,” said Brendan Buck, a longtime former Hill aide who is now a Republican operative. “The president used force against American citizens, not to protect property, but to soothe his own insecurities."

Jennifer Rubin, WaPo: "Nothing could be more representative of the dangerous narcissism of a president in over his head, resorting to threats of violence against a country he ostensibly is supposed to lead. The deliberate instigation of violence for his own photo op tells Americans how deeply twisted and deformed his character is.

His stunt was designed to play to the most rabid white evangelicals, who inexplicably have always seen themselves — not African Americans — as the true victims. The invocation of a religious institution to justify an assault on peaceful protesters was as great an abuse of religious symbols as anything Trump has done. Surely, he never heard of the “Blessed are the peacemakers” passage from the Christian bible. 

He worships not peacemakers but instruments of brute force. Moreover, any attempt to use the military against civilians in this fashion would almost certainly be illegal and unconstitutional. Even under the Insurrection Act, federal troops would have to be invited into the states to suppress an actual rebellion. For Trump, the threat of force, however unrealistic, is his go-to move when his manliness is called into question — as it was when he fled to the bunker at the White House over the weekend.

Witnesses at Trump's gassing of peaceful demonstrator at St. John's, Lafayette Square:
Friends, I am ok, but I am, frankly shaken. I was at St. John's, Lafayette Square most of the afternoon, with fellow clergy and laypeople - and clergy from some other denominations too. We were passing out water and snacks, and helping the patio area at St. John's, Lafayette square to be a place of respite and peace. All was well - with a few little tense moments - until about 6:15 or so. By then, I had connected with the Black Lives Matter medic team, which was headed by an EMT. Those people were AMAZING. They had been on the patio all day, and thankfully had not had to use much of the eyewash they had made. 

Around 6:15 or 6:30, the police started really pushing protestors off of H Street (the street between the church and Lafayette Park), and ultimately, the White House. They started using tear gas and folks were running at us for eyewashes or water or wet paper towels. At this point, Julia, one of our seminarians for next year (who is a trauma nurse) and I looked at each other in disbelief. I was coughing, her eyes were watering, and we were trying to help people as the police - in full riot gear - drove people toward us. 

Julia and her classmates left and I stayed with the BLM folks trying to help people. Suddenly, around 6:30, there was more tear gas, more concussion grenades, and I think I saw someone hit by a rubber bullet - he was grasping his stomach and there was a mark on his shirt. 

The police in their riot gear were literally walking onto the St. John's, Lafayette Square patio with these metal shields, pushing people off the patio and driving them back. People were running at us as the police advanced toward us from the other side of the patio. We had to try to pick up what we could. The BLM medic folks were obviously well practiced. They picked up boxes and ran. I was so stunned I only got a few water bottles and my spray bottle of eyewash. 

We were literally DRIVEN OFF of the St. John's, Lafayette Square patio with tear gas and concussion grenades and police in full riot gear. We were pushed back 20 feet, and then eventually - with SO MANY concussion grenades - back to K street. By the time I got back to my car, around 7, I was getting texts from people saying that Trump was outside of St. John's, Lafayette Square. I literally COULD NOT believe it. 


More below: