Leid Stories Stories and news that affect us all

July 31, 2013  

Edward Snowden & The Prism of Whiteness

It’s enough, in many quarters, that Edward Snowden has disemboweled Prism, the NSA’s massive cybersurveillance program, and is serving up its entrails at his whim on silver platters for the whole world to see.  He’s hit Big Brother where it really hurts. He’s recalibrated the power equation between the government and the governed. He’s a world-class hero, worthy of unqualified, no-questions-asked, global support. Leid Stories takes a look at Snowden, his actions and expressed beliefs and the current situation through the prism that shapes his world—the prism of whiteness. It is an undemocratic world that negates certain realities and histories while arrogating onto itself the “natural” power and “right” to reorder and reshape things to its own liking. People of color in the United States and all around the world know this story only too well.

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July 30, 2013  

Two issues! What’s Your Opinion? Voice Your View on Open Forum!

You know things are bad and the pickings slim when prostitute-patron ex-governor Eliot Spitzer, now a candidate for comptroller, thinks the weenie-texting ex-congressman Anthony Weiner is an embarrassment to politics and should quit the race for mayor – and Weiner was in the lead! So, question: With candidates like these running under the Democratic banner, is this not the best time to dump the Democratic Party?

While NSA superleaker Edward Snowden continues his temporary asylum in Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport, his dad Lonnie has revved up his campaign to force the Obama administration to agree to terms that might encourage his son to return to the United States. In any event, says Lonnie Snowden, his son has done the right thing by exposing the NSA’s massive cybersurveillance program. So, question: Should the U.S. government negotiate Snowden’s return and whatever charges it might bring against him?

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July 29, 2013  

Showdown in Tallahassee/The Democratic Party’s Notion of ‘Standards’

For two weeks now, The Dream Defenders, a group of young activists, have camped outside Gov. Rick Scott’s office in Tallahassee, Fla., insisting that he call a special legislative session to re-examine the state’s “Stand-Your-Ground” law. In a very brief meeting last week, Scott said he would not call a special session, and the camp-in continued. Leid Stories gives a report on the status of the protest.

Plus, a pointed question: What does it say about the Democratic Party that it allows the likes of Anthony Weiner (candidate for New York City mayor) and Eliot Spitzer (candidate for New York City comptroller) to run under its banner?

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July 26, 2013  

Courting Trouble: How the Court Manipulates Jurors’ Verdicts

A second juror’s explanation of how the six-member panel arrived at its not-guilty verdict against George Zimmerman raises troubling questions.

Identified as Juror B29, the lone nonwhite juror in an exclusive interview with Nightline’s Robin Roberts spoke of her agony in voting not guilty—even though she initially had voted for conviction on the second-degree murder charge. The law was very confusing, she said, but she felt pressured to “obey the law.”

Juror B 37, the first juror to speak publicly after the verdict, related a similar story about how confusing the law was.

Leid Stories tells why the jurors voted to acquit Zimmerman for killing Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26 last year and why, as Juror B29 said, “he got away with murder.”

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July 25, 2013  

50 Years Since the Big March for Jobs, How Much Progress?

Coming up on the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington for economic and social justice, how much progress has been made?

Leid Stories tackles the first part of the two-pronged mission of the march with a status report on the economy today.

Dr. Algernon Austin of the Washington, D.C.-based Economic Policy Institute discusses alarming shifts in the U.S. economy that have created almost unbridgeable gaps between rich and poor, and focuses particularly on the Obama administration’s policies.

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July 24, 2013  

Say It Loud, Say It Clear, for the Whole Wide World to Hear!

It’s Open Phones on Leid Stories, and you take the conversation where you want it to go. Opine, critique, explain, hypothesize—just make your point, being sure, to begin with, that you do have a point. But as usual, expect to be challenged – with love and respect, of course!

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July 22, 2013  

Say, Whaaat? Obama Publicly Wrestles with Being Black In ‘Post-Racial’ America—and puts Trayvon Martin ‘In Context’

It’s been lauded as his most eloquent statement yet, both on “race relations” and on being a black man in America--the 17-minute “personal” speech President Obama made on July 19 ostensibly “addressing” the not-guilty verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. Say, whaaat? So, Leid Stories is starting the week off right. We’ll deconstruct the president’s speech to show the wide variance between what he said, what he meant, and what people believe they heard. It’s media literacy for people who value their brains!

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July 19, 2013  

Zimmerman’s Natural Rights; Trayvon’s Civil Rights

The jury’s favorable verdict for George Zimmerman confirmed an age-old truth about the criminal-justice system that explains the wide variance of outcomes for blacks and whites. Whites come before the court protected by their “natural” rights—the rights of real persons, no matter how guilty they may be. Blacks, on the other hand, have no such guarantees. The rights they allegedly have are largely construed to be “civil” rights— constitutional concessions grudgingly given. The system, especially in former slave states (as Florida is), hasn’t rid itself of Justice Roger’s Taney’s declaration in the Dred Scott decision: The black man has no rights that the white man (or system) is bound to respect. Leid Stories’ discussion today begins here.

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July 19, 2013  
July 18, 2013  

A Travesty of Justice…Yet Again! How Do We Break the Pattern?

Leid Stories continues the conversation on the Zimmerman verdict, its genesis and its aftermath.

The jury’s verdict touched off a number of protests nationwide. Yet, an all-too-familiar pattern is emerging—a flurry of activity in several quarters with established “leaders” at the forefront who have vested interests in maintaining a high profile. This hot-button issue is precisely what they need; it can open doors that have long been shut to them.

How do we break the pattern of predictable behavior—a lot of noise that soon gives way to deafening silence and inaction? That’s the uncomfortable question Leid Stories poses today.

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