Archive | March 6, 2015

Jail Time and a $20k Fine for Refusing to Give a Phone Password*

Jail Time and a $20k Fine for Refusing to Give a Phone Password*

It would have been easier to ask the NSA for his password/code, at least that is what we are led to believe.

A 38-year old Canadian citizen is facing up to a year in jail and a fine of up to 25,000 Canadian dollars for refusing to unlock his cell and thus “obstructing” an in-depth security screening by the border service officials at the Halifax airport.

Alain Philippon from Ste-Anne-des-Plaines, Quebec, has been detained and charged with “obstructing border officials” after he refused to provide his BlackBerry phone password to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officers upon his arrival from the Dominican Republic this week.

“Philippon refused to divulge the passcode for his cell phone, preventing border services officers from their duties,” the Canada Border Services Agency told AFP.

It was not announced why the Quebecan was selected for an in-depth examination, but the agency says that the Customs Act allows border officials to examine “all goods and conveyances including electronic devices, such as cell phones and laptops.”

As a result, the man was charged under section 153.1 (b) of the Customs Act. After being let out on bail, and having lost the privilege of using his seized cell phone, Philippon is to appear in court in May to face charges that could see him barred for up to a year and a CAD$25,000 fine.

Philippon told local media he would fight the charges, saying that he refused to provide the password because his smartphone data is “personal.”

“Officers are trained in examination, investigative and questioning techniques,” a border services spokesperson wrote in an email to CBC.

“To divulge our approach may render our techniques ineffective. Officers are trained to look for indicators of deception and use a risk management approach in determining which goods may warrant a closer look.”

Philippon’s case may make him the first person in Canada to test the depth and the scope of the applicable law.

“This is a question that has not been litigated in Canada, whether they can actually demand you to hand over your password to allow them to unlock the device,” Rob Currie, director of the Law and Technology Institute at the Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University told CBC.

“[It’s] one thing for them to inspect it, another thing for them to compel you to help them,” Currie added.


Related Topics:

Canada: ISIS False Flag Served to Bring in Draconian Laws*

On Trial in Canada for Speaking against Zionist Crimes*

Disappearing and Murdered: Canada’s Indigenous Women*

Canada under Criminal Investigation for Murders, and Child Trafficking*

Europe’s ‘Smart Borders’*

The Big Bang is Just a Theory, as New Equations Point to Infinity*

The Big Bang is Just a Theory, as New Equations Point to Infinity*

A new quantum equation developed by Ahmed Farag Ali and Saurya Das, from the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada, shows it to be possible that the universe has no beginning, or end, and is in fact eternal.

This is an artist’s concept of the metric expansion of space, where space (including hypothetical non-observable portions of the universe) is represented at each time by the circular sections. Note on the left the dramatic expansion (not to scale) occurring in the inflationary epoch, and at the center the expansion acceleration. The scheme is decorated with WMAP images on the left and with the representation of stars at the appropriate level of development. Credit: NASA

This is an artist’s concept of the metric expansion of space, where space (including hypothetical non-observable portions of the universe) is represented at each time by the circular sections. Note on the left the dramatic expansion (not to scale) occurring in the inflationary epoch, and at the center the expansion acceleration. The scheme is decorated with WMAP images on the left and with the representation of stars at the appropriate level of development. Credit: NASA

This new work and equation examines older theories, attempts to explain dark energy and looks at hypothetical gravity particles called gravitons.

The universe may have existed forever, according to a new model that applies quantum correction terms to complement Einstein’s theory of general relativity. The model may also account for dark matter and dark energy, resolving multiple problems at once.
The widely accepted age of the universe, as estimated by general relativity, is 13.8 billion years. In the beginning, everything in existence is thought to have occupied a single infinitely dense point, or singularity. Only after this point began to expand in a “Big Bang” did the universe officially begin.

Although the Big Bang singularity arises directly and unavoidably from the mathematics of general relativity, some scientists see it as problematic because the math can explain only what happened immediately after—not at or before—the singularity.

“The Big Bang singularity is the most serious problem of general relativity because the laws of physics appear to break down there,” Ahmed Farag Ali at Benha University and the Zewail City of Science and Technology, both in Egypt, told

Ali and co-author Saurya Das at the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada, have shown in a paper published in Physics Letters B that the Big Bang singularity can be resolved by their new model in which the universe has no beginning and no end.

Old ideas revisited

The physicists emphasize that their quantum correction terms are not applied ad hoc in an attempt to specifically eliminate the Big Bang singularity. Their work is based on ideas by the theoretical physicist David Bohm, who is also known for his contributions to the philosophy of physics. Starting in the 1950s, Bohm explored replacing classical geodesics (the shortest path between two points on a curved surface) with quantum trajectories.

In their paper, Ali and Das applied these Bohmian trajectories to an equation developed in the 1950s by physicist Amal Kumar Raychaudhuri at Presidency University in Kolkata, India. Raychaudhuri was also Das’s teacher when he was an undergraduate student of that institution in the ’90s.

Using the quantum-corrected Raychaudhuri equation, Ali and Das derived quantum-corrected Friedmann equations, which describe the expansion and evolution of universe (including the Big Bang) within the context of general relativity. Although it’s not a true theory of quantum gravity, the model does contain elements from both quantum theory and general relativity. Ali and Das also expect their results to hold even if and when a full theory of quantum gravity is formulated.

No singularities or dark stuff

In addition to not predicting a Big Bang singularity, the new model does not predict a “big crunch” singularity, either. In general relativity, one possible fate of the universe is that it starts to shrink until it collapses in on itself in a big crunch and becomes an infinitely dense point once again.

Ali and Das explain in their paper that their model avoids singularities because of a key difference between classical geodesics and Bohmian trajectories. Classical geodesics eventually cross each other, and the points at which they converge are singularities. In contrast, Bohmian trajectories never cross each other, so singularities do not appear in the equations.

In cosmological terms, the scientists explain that the quantum corrections can be thought of as a cosmological constant term (without the need for dark energy) and a radiation term. These terms keep the universe at a finite size, and therefore give it an infinite age. The terms also make predictions that agree closely with current observations of the cosmological constant and density of the universe.

New gravity particle

In physical terms, the model describes the universe as being filled with a quantum fluid. The scientists propose that this fluid might be composed of gravitons—hypothetical mass-less particles that mediate the force of gravity. If they exist, gravitons are thought to play a key role in a theory of quantum gravity.

In a related paper, Das and another collaborator, Rajat Bhaduri of McMaster University, Canada, have lent further credence to this model. They show that gravitons can form a Bose-Einstein condensate (named after Einstein and another Indian physicist, Satyendranath Bose) at temperatures that were present in the universe at all epochs.

Motivated by the model’s potential to resolve the Big Bang singularity and account for dark matter and dark energy, the physicists plan to analyze their model more rigorously in the future. Their future work includes redoing their study while taking into account small inhomogeneous and anisotropic perturbations, but they do not expect small perturbations to significantly affect the results.

“It is satisfying to note that such straightforward corrections can potentially resolve so many issues at once,” Das said.


Scientists Say Universe Shouldn’t Exist if Big Bang Is True

Creation Phenomena in The Holy Qur’an

Related Topics:

Physics of Tawhid: A Quantum View of the World

Forget the Theory you cannot go Faster than the Speed of Light!

Finding God in a Particle!

Why Gene Therapy and Designated Genetic Disorders is Tinkering and not Science!

Beyond DNA and Our Dangerous Limited Minds*

Evolution: God’s Game

Climategate: March on Climate Change vs. 1000 Int’l Conscientious Scientists*

The Frequency of Everything*

The Hidden History of the Human Race*

Take II on Cholesterol… Doctors Got It Wrong!*

March 2015: 117 Vaccine Injuries and Deaths*

March 2015: 117 Vaccine Injuries and Deaths*

By Brian Shilhavy

The Depart of Justice issues a report on vaccine injuries and deaths every quarter to the Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines (click on “Meeting Book PDF – 11 MB” and start reading at page 51.). This March 5, 2015 report states that there were 117 cases for vaccine injuries and deaths compensated from 11/16/2014 to 2/15/2015.

92 of the settlements were listed in the report, giving the name of the vaccines, the injury, and the amount of time the case was pending before settlement. Five of those settlements were for deaths linked to vaccines, with three deaths related to the flu shot. 73 of the 92 settlements were for injuries and deaths due to the flu shot, and the majority of flu shot injuries were for Guillain-Barré Syndrome.

These quarterly reports on vaccine injuries and death settlements from the U.S. vaccine court are seldom, if ever, reported in the mainstream media. We report them here at Health Impact News. Here is the March 5, 2015 report:

Most of the U.S. Public is Unaware of the Vaccine Court

In November of 2014 the Government Accounting Office (GAO)  issued the first report on America’s “Vaccine Court,” known as the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP), in almost 15 years. Most citizens of the United States are not even aware that there is something called the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, and that if you suffer harm or death due to a vaccine, that you cannot sue the manufacturer of the vaccine, but you must sue the Federal Government and try to obtain compensation from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Trust Fund, which is funded by taxes paid on vaccines.

The November 2014 GAO report criticized the government for not making the public more aware that this program exists, and that there are funds available for vaccine injuries. Therefore, the settlements represented by vaccine injuries and deaths included in the DOJ report probably represent a small fraction of the actual vaccine injuries and deaths occurring in America today.

The Federal Vaccine Court is Not Helping Victims of Vaccine Injuries and Vaccine Deaths

But even for those families and individuals who are aware of the NVICP, fighting a legal battle that can take years to get access to the funds ensures that many who do file claims never get any of the funds reserved for vaccine injuries. That fund, the Vaccine Injury Compensation Trust Fund, is currently over $3.5 billion, largely because the U.S. Government refuses to even hear cases related to autism which would quickly deplete the fund. (See: How the Government has Earned $3.5 BILLION from the Claim that Vaccines Don’t Cause Autism.)

Wayne Rohde, author of the book The Vaccine Court: The Dark Truth of America’s Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, explains how the NVICP is no longer a viable justice venue for the vaccine injured as Congress intended it to be. (See: GAO Report on Vaccine Court Reveals Vaccine Injured Victims Not Being Helped.)

Lies, Fraud, and Corruption Mar U.S. Vaccine Policy

The unified message presented by the U.S. mainstream media and certain government agencies is that vaccines are safe.

This is a lie. Vaccines are dangerous. People are injured and killed by vaccines, and the quarterly reports from the DOJ, which probably reflects a very small percentage of the actual cases, clearly reflect that inherent danger.

So many people were being injured and killed by vaccines in the 1980s, that the pharmaceutical companies petitioned Congress to pass legislation giving them legal immunity from cases in civil court. They basically blackmailed Congress by threatening to get out of the vaccine business if such legislation was not passed.

Congress obliged in 1986, and today we have the NVICP, while new vaccines entering this “protected” and “guaranteed” market have soared. The largest purchaser of vaccines is the CDC, purchasing over $4 billion worth of vaccines a year.

In addition, the U.S. Government holds patents on some vaccines, and earns royalties on them, such as the Gardasil vaccine. Julie Gerberding was in charge of the CDC from 2002 to 2009, which includes the years the FDA approved Gardasil as a vaccine. Soon after she took over the CDC, she reportedly completely overhauled the agency’s organizational structure, and many of the CDC’s senior scientists and leaders either left or announced plans to leave. Some have claimed that almost all of the replacements Julie Gerberding appointed had ties to the vaccine industry.

Gerberding resigned from the CDC on January 20, 2009, and is now the president of Merck’s Vaccine division, a 5 billion dollar a year operation, and the supplier of the largest number of vaccines the CDC recommends (article here).

In 2014 Dr. William Thompson, a senior epidemiologist at the CDC who co-authored and published research on the MMR vaccine for the CDC back in 2004, made the decision to become a whistleblower and reveal data that was concealed by the CDC linking the MMR vaccine to autism among African American boys. In addition, Merck has been involved in a long federal lawsuit with allegations of fraud over the mumps portion of the MMR vaccine, in a case filed back in 2010 by two whistleblowers, virologists who worked for Merck. Merck has apparently tried hard to get this case thrown out of court, and keep this news out of the media, but late in 2014 a federal judge finally ruled that the case is to move forward. (See: Why is the Mainstream Media Ignoring Measles Vaccine Fraud Cases?)

Conclusion: Do Not Trust what the Government Says About Vaccines

The U.S. government has massive conflicts of interest where it concerns policies related to the vaccine industry. Before you make a potential life-changing decision for you or your children by agreeing to be vaccinated, do your own research. The government cannot be trusted on vaccine matters, and the mainstream media and many doctors are also not doing their own research related to the vaccine industry. Be informed and educated regarding vaccines, before you become a statistic among the vaccine injured and dead.


Related Topics:

Ebola hoax update: my FOIA request to the CDC

Drugs that Damage your DNA: When Dementia isn’t Alzheimer*

17 Year Old’s Life Ruined by the Gardasil Vaccine*

A Two-week Old to be Confiscated if Entire Family doesn’t get Flu Shots*

Link Between Child Mortality And Unvaccinated Kids*

A Glorious Past Before Colonialism and the Oppression of African Women*

A Glorious Past Before Colonialism and the Oppression of African Women*

By Garikai Chengu

Sunday marks International Women’s Day, which was founded in 1908 by the Socialist party of America in order to promote the struggle for women’s equality. Unbeknown to many, for the vast majority of human history, which took place in Africa, women have been equal if not superior to men.

“I want to show warriors from ancient times; revolutionists, anti-colonialists, intellectual women who have written the story of Africa. We need figures to be proud of our roots, to keep fighting for our rights, and to write the story of tomorrow.” – YZ (French artist)

The world’s first civilizations arose from the spiritual, economic and social efforts of African women and African women in turn went on to lead those Matriarchal societies.

Matriarchy in ancient Africa was not a mirror image of patriarchy today, as it was not based on appropriation and violence. The rituals and culture of matriarchy did not celebrate violence; rather, they had a lot to do with fecundity, exchange and redistribution.

Early man was unaware of the link between intercourse and birth, therefore it was thought that new life was created by the woman alone. This belief created the first concept of God as a caring, compassionate, generous, all loving and all powerful Mother, which is the basis of the African matriarchal ideology.

Historian Cheikh Anta Diop illustrates how as early as 10,000 BC women in Africa pioneered organized cultivation, thereby creating the pre-conditions for surplus, wealth and trade. African women are responsible for the greatest invention for the well being of human kind, namely, food security. It is the practice of organized agriculture that made population expansion, food surpluses and the emergence civilization possible.

Pre-capitalist matriarchal civilizations in Africa included the Nigerian Zazzau, Sudanese Kandake, Angolan Nzinga, and Ashanti of Ghana, to name but a few. The quintessential African matriarchal system was most evident and most enduring in black Ancient Egypt.

Women in Ancient Egypt owned and had complete control over both movable and immovable property such as real estate in 3000 BC. As late as the 1960s, this right could not be claimed by women in some parts of the United States.

A closer look at ancient Egyptian papyrus’ reveals that society was strictly matrilineal and inheritance and descent was through the female line. The Egyptian woman enjoyed the same legal and economic rights as the Egyptian man, and the proof of this is reflected in Egyptian art and historical inscriptions. Egypt was an unequal society but the inequality was based much more upon differences in the social classes, rather than differences in gender.

From ancient legal documents, we know that women were able to manage and dispose of private property, including: land, portable goods, servants, slaves, livestock, and financial instruments such as endowments and annuities. A woman could administer all her property independently and according to her free will and in several excavated cemeteries the richest tombs were those of women.

Mask of Queen Idia, the political administrator, mystical woman, warrior and the first Queen of Bini (Benin) kingdom in Nigeria

The independence and leadership roles of ancient Egyptian women are part of an African cultural pattern that began millennia ago and continued into recent times, until Europeans brought capitalism and Christianity to Africa.

In the 1860s, the colonial explorer Dr. David Livingstone wrote of meeting female chiefs in the Congo, and in most of the monarchical systems of traditional Africa there were either one or two women of the highest rank who occupied a position on a par with that of the king or complementary to it.

Professor of Ancient African History, Barbara Lesko illustrates how anthropologists who have studied African history and records of early travellers and missionaries tell us

“everywhere in Africa that one scrapes the surface one finds ethno-historical data on the authority once shared by women.”

Under colonial misrule, black women suffered double-edged discrimination and dis-empowerment both as women and as black people.

It is difficult for many people to accept that racial discrimination and antagonism, which is such a pervasive phenomenon in the world today, has not been a permanent historical feature of humanity. In fact, the very notion of “race” and the ideology and practice of racism is a relatively modern concept.

For instance, historians recount how the Romans and Greeks attached no particular stigma to the colour of a person’s skin and there were no theories about the inferiority of darker skin. Slavery in ancient societies was not defined by colour, but primarily by military fortune: conquered peoples, irrespective of their colour, were enslaved.

Queen Tiye wife of King Nebmare Amenhotep III

Just before colonisation, African women were largely equal to men. The significant value of African women’s productive labour in producing and processing food created and maintained their rights in domestic, political, cultural, economic, religious and social spheres, among others. Because women were central to production in these pre-class societies, systematic inequality between the sexes was non-existent, and elder women in particular enjoyed relatively high status.

With the creation of the capitalist colonial economy, the marginalization of women came in several ways:

Firstly, the advent of title deeds, made men the sole owners of land. Consequently, as women lost access and control of land, they became increasingly economically dependent on men. This in turn led to an intensification of domestic patriarchy, reinforced by colonial social institutions.

Secondly, as colonialism continued to entrench itself on African soil, the perceived importance of women’s agricultural contribution to the household was greatly reduced, as their vital role in food production was overshadowed by the more lucrative male-dominated cash crop cultivation for the international market. Prior to colonialism, women dominated trade. Markets were not governed by pure profit values; but rather, by the basic need to exchange, redistribute and socialize. Traditional African economic systems were not capitalist in nature.

Thirdly, colonialism brought with it Christianity and a masculine fundamentalism, which is now prevalent across Africa today. The imported patriarchal religion does not allow women to play the leading roles they have in the indigenous African religion.

In Ancient African religions it is not only God who is female, but also the main guardian spirits and sacred principles. Rosalind Jeffries, a historian, documents the concept of the Supreme Mother. In a paper entitled, “The Image of Woman in African Cave Art”, she shows how African Creation stories focused on the Primordial Mother, creating woman first, then man.

Christianity brought the monogamous nuclear family unit to Africa. Its sole purpose was to pass on private property, in the form of inheritance, from one generation of men to the next. Under capitalism, the modern family unit is founded on concealed, domestic slavery of the wife; and, the modern capitalist society is a compound made up of many individual families as its molecules.

A glance at the dictionary will reveal that the word family, has rather telling Latin origins. Famulus literally means domestic slave; and familia, which is also the Italian word for family, signified the total number of slaves belonging to one man. Karl Marx lays it bare:

“The modern family contains in germ not only slavery (servitus) but also serfdom, since from the beginning it is related to agricultural services. It contains in miniature all the contradictions which later extend throughout society and its state.”

Finally, the introduction of wage labour affected women by uprooting men from villages to work in urban areas, causing profound, negative economic impacts on women. Colonial authorities routinely used native African males to impose taxes on women, thereby entrenching male dominance in the Native’s psyche. After all, colonialists brought to Africa the concept of the Victorian woman: a woman who should stay in the private domain and leave “real work” to the men. Due to the Victorian concept of women held by all colonialists, African women were excluded from the new political and administrative system, whose sole purpose was to extract raw materials and labour from the colony.

Colonialism replaced the role and status of the pre-colonial, African woman with a landless and disenfranchised domestic slave.

The United Nations Development Program notes that nowadays, African women perform 66% of the world’s work, produce 50% of the food, but earn only 10% of the income and own only one percent of the property.

The greatest threat towards the African woman’s glorious future is her ignorance of her glorious past. Armed with knowledge, Africans must now fight to restore women to a position of respect and of economic freedom that exceeds that which she enjoyed before colonialism.


Related Topics:

Ordinary Women Doing the Impossible 

UN’s Heterophobic Agenda*

Enough Say the Women of Gbaramatu to Chevron

African-American Women and Childbirth

Rabbi Admits Jewish Role in the African Slave Trade*

Israel admits to Birth Controlling Ethiopian Women*

Black Women Targeted with Eugenics Drug*

The WHO’s Private Vaccine Laboratory*

The Collective Intelligence of Women

U.S. Erosion of the Civil Rights of Women

How Feminism Destroys Society*

Why Billionaire Oligarchs Bankroll Feminism*

NWO Imperial Destabilization of Africa Unabated*

The Paths of Return

South Africa: NWO’s Agenda 21 Litmus Test*

Bishop Badejo: U.S. won’t fight Boko Haram because of their Eugenics Agenda in Africa*

Think You’re All European or African? Most Are Mixed*

The Hidden History of the Human Race*

Re-writing European History for the Classroom*

Mexican Study: Lower Mother Mortality and Violence against Women in Less ‘Liberal’ States*

Corruption Charges in the Wind for Spanish Ruling Party Members*

Corruption Charges in the Wind for Spanish Ruling Party Members*

Blame and revenge have one by-product. Even if justice takes place for their crimes against and in the name of Spanish people, the elite’s knee-jerk reaction to the population will be severe as exampled by Egypt. So how to heal a nation and facilitate a sustainable alternative for all remains the biggest challenge in order to go forward as a nation as exampled by Bolivia while purging and cleansing governance.

A lot can happen in 6 months when the trial is scheduled, like making sure it does not happen. This sets precedence for the way forward for the corrupt governing European elite following the way Iceland dealt with its banksters.

Anti-prosterity protest, Spain

A Spanish Judge Thursday ordered the reopening of a trial against 40 individuals involved in one of the biggest corruption scandals in the country’s history.

The scandal has rocked the administration of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, as among those involved include Luis Barcenas, former treasurer of the ruling Popular Party (PP), and various other members of his party.

The decision was taken by judge Pablo Ruz, and follows a High Court decision to reject the defence of accused as the court saw “a clear indication of a crime.” The judge also imposed court bonds worth a total of US$500 million on 36 of the 40 suspects.

Barcenas faces the highest court bond of US$97 million, while the alleged mastermind of the scheme , businessman Francisco Correa, was ordered by the judge to file a US$66 million bond.

The trial, which is not expected to start for another year, could last for as long as six months.

In Spain, the scandal – is better known as “Gurtel” case after the company that the contracts went to – involves numerous officials and politicians who are alleged to have taken bribes and luxury gifts, in return for public contracts. Those being investigated for influence-trafficking and embezzling public funds include politicians, football clubs and even the king’s sister.

This is the latest of a series of scandals for Rajoy and the PP, and comes as Spain gears up for a general election that will be most likely held on Dec. 20.

According to recent surveys, corruption is the second biggest concern for Spanish people after unemployment.


Related Topics:

Spanish Judge Makes Bank President and Former IMF Chief Pay for Financial Crimes*

Spanish are Pulling Cash Out at Record Rate*

NWO: Anti-Protest Laws, Following Canada, U.S. Now Spain and Egypt*

Spain to Tax Bank Deposits*

Popular Resistance against Privatization Delivers Results in Spain*

Protesting has Gone Flamenco, in Spain at Least*

1.8mn Catalonians Rally for Independence from Spain*

Spain to Use the Military Where U.K. Used Emotional Blackmail to Stop Secession*

Spanish Police also getting Training from Israel*

Moroccans Say No Royal Pardon for Spanish Elite Paedophile Network*

350,800 Missing Children Found in Mass Graves in Ireland, Spain, Canada*

Spanish Independence and the Re-colonization of Southern Europe*

Not in the West: Bolivian Economy Grew $34 Billion in 2014*


Only $3 billion Declared of the $39.5 billion in Gulf Aid to Sisi*

Some Police Departments have been under Investigation*

Some Police Departments have been under Investigation*

Ferguson isn’t alone. There are 20 other law-enforcement agencies around the country that are plagued by abuses, according to the Department of Justice

The Justice Department’s much-anticipated report on the Ferguson Police department is now out, but the St. Louis city is just one of 21 U.S. law-enforcement agencies that the feds have investigated over the past six years for chronic abuses like racial bias and excessive force. The maps below show the investigations that have been launched since 2009, and include some of the cases that highlight some of the practices that have gotten those departments in trouble.


Related Topics:

Report Confirms Predatory System of Ferguson*

Obama’s Policed State

Utah Police Responsible for More Killings than Criminals*

No Debate on Congress Passing Police Unlimited Access to Citizens’ Private Communications*

Undercover Cops Inciting Violence in anti-Police Brutality Demos*

Spanish Police also getting Training from Israel*

U.S. Killer Cops get Further Training in Israel*

Report Confirms Predatory System of Ferguson*

Report Confirms Predatory System of Ferguson*

By Juan Thompson and Ryan Devereaux

Police in Ferguson, Missouri have presided over a predatory system of entrenched racism, economic exploitation and constitutional rights violations stretching back several years, according to a long-awaited Department of Justice investigation released Wednesday. The scathing 102-page report paints a portrait of a vicious environment in which Ferguson’s black residents are disproportionately mired in municipal court fines — frequently resulting from dubious traffic stops — in order to generate revenue for the St. Louis suburb and routinely subjected to excessive use of force.

The report, six months in the making, confirms many of the complaints black residents raised in the wake the fatal August shooting of Michael Brown — an unarmed African American teen — by Darren Wilson, a white Ferguson police officer. Brown’s killing sparked months of protest, highlighting longstanding discriminatory practices carried out by Ferguson’s majority white police force against Ferguson’s majority black population.

In a press conference Wednesday unveiling the report, Attorney General Eric Holder blamed Ferguson’s police for creating a “powder keg” that exploded when Brown was gunned down in broad daylight. In November, a grand jury declined to indict Wilson in Brown’s slaying; in a separate development Wednesday, the DOJ cleared Wilson of alleged civil rights violations in the teen’s killing.

The DOJ’s report on the Ferguson police department places responsibility for the deplorable civil rights conditions in Ferguson on department and city officials alike — some of whom federal officials documented sending racist emails denigrating the president, the first lady and black people in general.

The report took aim at five distinct areas: the Ferguson Police Department’s exploitation of citizens as a source of revenue, police practices, the municipality’s court system, racial bias and community distrust. In each area, the police department in Ferguson was found to be an abysmal failure in which interlocking abuses and perverse incentives have eroded constitutional rights.

The report tells the story of a city where, under the colour of law enforcement, demands for revenue have been coupled with racial discrimination, resulting in disastrous conclusions for the city’s black residents.

As the report noted, from 2012 to 2014 African Americans accounted for “85% of vehicle stops, 90% of citations, and 93% of arrests made by FPD officers, despite comprising only 67% of Ferguson’s population.” Tickets mean money for the city — in 2013, municipal court fines were Ferguson’s second highest source, the bulk of which were levelled against African Americans.

“Ferguson’s law enforcement practices are shaped by the City’s focus on revenue rather than by public safety needs,” the report stated.

“This emphasis on revenue has compromised the institutional character of Ferguson’s police department, contributing to a pattern of unconstitutional policing, and has also shaped its municipal court, leading to procedures that raise due process concerns and inflict unnecessary harm on members of the Ferguson community.”

For those familiar with law enforcement in St. Louis County, the report reflected a confirmation of longstanding problems.

“This report tells us something we already know,” said Montague Simmons, chair of the St. Louis nonprofit Organization for Black Struggle.

“The question we should be asking is what do we do with it? Do we dismantle the racist police state, and disband the Ferguson the Police Department? Or do we learn nothing and keep on with the same thing.”

Holder’s DOJ stopped short of calling for the wholesale disbanding of Ferguson’s police department, though he did blame the department for fostering a “toxic environment, defined by mistrust and resentment.” In the report, however, his office laid out 26 recommendations for Ferguson’s police department and municipal court system. Failure to comply with a “consent decree” could result in the city facing a lawsuit from the federal government.

“It is time for Ferguson’s leaders to take immediate, wholesale and structural corrective action,” Holder said Wednesday, adding that,

“the United States Department of Justice reserves all its rights and abilities to force compliance and implement basic change.”

The report found that in nearly nine out of 10 uses of force by the Ferguson police department, the person on the receiving end was black. In one particularly brutal scene described in the report, the police tasered a mentally disabled man who had tried to commit suicide in his cell. It occurred in July 2011 when, “a correctional officer used a [taser] to stun an African-American male inmate three times after he tried to hang himself with material torn from a medical dressing and banged his head on the cell wall.”

Another incident in the report illustrated how Ferguson police frequently violated the First Amendment rights of Ferguson’s black residents. “In July 2012,” the report said, “a police officer arrested a business owner on charges of Interfering in Police Business and Misuse of 911 because she objected to the officer’s detention of her employee. According to FPD records, the owner ‘became verbally involved,’ came out of her shop three times … The officer characterized her protestations as interference and arrested her inside her shop. The arrest violated the First Amendment.”

Such arrests were routine; the report detailed numerous cases of police arresting residents for constitutionally protected activities such as disrespectful language toward police and the recording of citizens’ encounters with police.

The Department of Justice accused Ferguson Police of being too quick to “escalate encounters with subjects they perceive to be disobeying their orders or resisting arrest. They have come to rely on [Electronic Control Weapons], specifically Tasers, where less force — or no force at all — would do.”

The department’s use of force also included the discriminatory use of police canines, even on children: “FPD engages in a pattern of deploying canines to bite individuals when the articulated facts do not justify this significant use of force. The department’s own records demonstrate that, as with other types of force, canine officers use dogs out of proportion to the threat posed by the people they encounter, leaving serious puncture wounds to nonviolent offenders, some of them children.” The report documented 14 bites by police dogs in which racial information was available — every person was black.

The Ferguson police also targeted black women. In one scene, officers were called to a domestic disturbance, but instead of aiding the woman who called 911, police jailed her for an occupancy violation. In a separate incident, another black woman, who had also called 911, was issued a summons for an occupancy permit violation. The report says she told the officer that she “hated the Ferguson Police Department and will never call again, even if she is being killed.” The Department of Justice also catalogued how police tasered black women even when they posed no physical threat.

Discriminatory behavior by street-level cops was matched by racist attitudes by higher-level city officials. One remarkable section of the report detailed how “some Ferguson decision makers hold negative stereotypes about African Americans, and lack of personal responsibility is one of them” — despite the fact that black residents made incredible efforts to pay the fines that were disproportionately handed out to them. At the same time, according to the report, white Ferguson police officers made a habit of fixing parking tickets for friends.

“Even as Ferguson City officials maintain the harmful stereotype that black individuals lack personal responsibility,” the report said, “and continue to cite this lack of personal responsibility as the cause of the disparate impact of Ferguson’s practices — white City officials condone a striking lack of personal responsibility.”

Ferguson’s municipal employees also held anti-black views, using official city email accounts to trade racist jokes. The report documents seven such emails. In one email municipal officials “mocked African Americans through speech and familial stereotypes, using a story involving child support. One line from the email read: ‘I be so glad that dis be my last child support payment! Month after month, year after year, all dose payments!’” Other employees referred to Barack Obama as a Chimpanzee, and endorsed the termination of black pregnancies as an effective tool for reducing crime. Another email “included a photo of a bare-chested group of dancing women, apparently in Africa, with the caption, ‘Michelle Obama’s High School Reunion.’” The authors of the emails were not identified.

The city of Ferguson — which is still reeling from the events following Brown’s killing last summer — will now have to answer for a report that depicts a widely bigoted police force and local government that actively targets black residents for harassment and assault.

In a statement released Wednesday, Brown’s parents welcomed the report, saying,

“It is our hope that through this action, true change will come not only in Ferguson, but around the country. If that change happens, our son’s death will not have been in vain.”


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