Drug Wars VIII

     Sometimes writing these essays are a chore and seem demanding, then there are other times when they seem to write themselves, this is one of the latter. I have written extensively about America's war on drugs and all the ills and problems that it has caused. First of all let me state that I am not a conspiracy theorist. I do not believe that racism is involved in every aspect of life in America, at least it hasn't been in my life. However, there are times when it plays a major role in how we interact with one another. The war on drugs and the death penalty are probably two of the most egregious ways in which racism does play a role in America. The recent results of a couple of studies highlight the disparity in our criminal justice system that can not be explained by any other means.

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Getting Rid of Whiteness?

Wanted to share this provocative post from the Movement Vision Lab blog by Dan Horowitz Garcia entitled, "Get Whitey!  A 21st Century Racial Justice Agenda".

Horowitz Garcia argues that whiteness is the main glue that holds the United States together, allowing the perpetuation of economic inequality not only for people of color but poor and working class white folks, too.  

How do we achieve equality and justice in the United States?

The key is to abolish whiteness, to end a political category that gives privilege to one group at the expense of others.

But rather than abolishing the politically-laden category of whiteness and transforming the many, many institutions that perpetuate hierarchy based on race -- from police to public schools -- Horowitz Garcia argues that in many cases, we actually reinforce white supremacy in institutions.  For instance, he uses the example of calling for new hate crimes laws in the wake of Jena, LA -- in the attempt to vindicate a racially profiled young man of color, demanding to expand the criminal justice system that spends most of its energy racially profiling young men of color.

As a white girl, I found this piece provocative.  What is whiteness, beyond skin color?  What does it mean in society?  And how do we move toward a vision where whiteness doesn't have exclusive power and privilege over others?  What do you think?

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NY-03: Peter King - Knee-jerk reactionary

In a recent Newsday article, Peter King endorsed a proposal to base our airport security on a full-scale racial profiling program. This is a cheap election year stunt aimed at motivating King's ultra-conservative base, NOT at increasing security. The security of our country is a serious problem that requires significant thought and practical answers. King has repeatedly shown that he cares little for coming up with a real solution.

Then, Peter King (probably stung by the criticism he received) dramatically reversed himself. During an appearance on Fox News Sunday, King's new opinion was that airport screeners should merely take into account a person's ethnicity as part of the threat equation in combination with displayed behavioral characteristics. His initial position followed by his subsequent flip-flop further proves that King, the Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, has no serious solutions for our nation's flawed security procedures.

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How has the immigration system fared one year under Obama's presidency?

From Restore Fairness Blog

In early 2009, President Obama appointed the governor of border-state Arizona Janet Napolitano, and a supporter of comprehensive immigration reform, as the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). For many, it was a sign that the administration would tackle immigration reform as a priority. In her first week in office, Napolitano ordered a sweeping internal review of DHS, aimed at identifying key areas for reform. March 2010 marks the one year anniversary from that week. So how much has changed for immigration?

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How has the immigration system fared one year under Obama's presidency?

From Restore Fairness Blog

In early 2009, President Obama appointed the governor of border-state Arizona Janet Napolitano, and a supporter of comprehensive immigration reform, as the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). For many, it was a sign that the administration would tackle immigration reform as a priority. In her first week in office, Napolitano ordered a sweeping internal review of DHS, aimed at identifying key areas for reform. March 2010 marks the one year anniversary from that week. So how much has changed for immigration?

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