White Supremacy in the ranks: Removing extremists not as easy as it sounds


Testing the limits of the 1st Amendment:

California is one of four states, including Oregon, Minnesota and Tennessee, along with Washington, D.C., that have proposed new laws to give law enforcement agencies more power to exclude officers with ties to extremism.

Various such efforts have been simmering around the country for years, spurred by F.B.I. reports starting more than 15 years ago that document a concerted effort by white supremacist and other extremist organizations to infiltrate the police.

They actually stumbled across intel in 2004 that pushed them to investigate further, discovering the deployment of "Ghost Skins." These are White Supremacists who don't wear the garb (or tattoos) of neo-nazis, so they can blend in and work from inside police and other organizations. Here's the redacted 2006 report released last year (can't copy and paste, you'll have to read it yourself). Here's more on the rights of racists:

Wednesday News: The Ostrich bill

NC REPUBLICANS DON'T WANT RACISM OR SEXISM BROUGHT UP IN SCHOOL: The N.C. House Education Committee backed a new bill unveiled on Tuesday that prohibits schools from promoting concepts such as the U.S. being racist and that people are inherently racist or sexist, whether consciously or unconsciously. The legislation comes after backlash over the state’s newly adopted K-12 social studies standards and a fear from conservatives that schools are painting white people as being racist and sexist. But Rep. James Galliard, a Nash County Democrat, called it an “anti-education bill.” Gaillard talked about growing up bi-racial and said the bill would hide the nation’s injustices. “This is an act to ensure discrimination, fanaticism, bigotry,” Gailliard said. “This is really a don’t hurt my feelings bill. Don’t tell me the truth about our history because it may hurt my feelings.”

Tuesday News: Snowflakes in May

REPUBLICANS WANT TO CONCEAL-CARRY IN THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY: Three unidentified Council members and “many” House members requested the permit exemptions, according to the chief bill sponsor, Republican Rep. Keith Kidwell of Beaufort County. Kidwell said he's received death threats in the past, and expects other colleagues have as well. Another co-sponsor, GOP Rep. Mike Clampitt of Swain County, said he wore a bulletproof vest on the campaign trail last fall. Bill opponents focused on the portion of the measure that would allow for armed legislators in their offices, committee rooms and on the House and Senate chamber floors. The legislative complex has undergone significant security upgrades in the past three years, with the installation of metal detectors at the main entrances and ID badges for legislators, staff and news media. “We just spent untold dollars protecting our means of ingress and egress. And we have a robust police force," said Rep. Deb Butler, a New Hanover County Democrat. “I just think that this is just a terrible idea.”

Stifling public comments on...stifling public comments?


Yeah, it's just as absurd as it sounds:

A Senate committee on Wednesday shut down public discussion of a contentious portion of the Farm Act, which coincidentally, sharply curbs public input on swine farms that install biogas systems and anaerobic digesters.

The public was allowed to comment on Tuesday before the Senate Agriculture, Energy and Environment Committee, which approved the bill and sent it on to the Senate Judiciary Committee. On Wednesday, though, when the Judiciary Committee discussed the legislation, committee leaders limited public comment to non-controversial sections and specifically excluded the digester issue.

Republicans have refined this tactic over the years (only allowing certain topics for public comments). Senator Amy Galey was notorious for this as Chair of the Alamance County Commission, and kept deputies handy to drag out speakers who deviated from her "allowed" comments. FWIW, it is tempting to set such parameters. I've conducted several meetings where public commenters have gone way past their allotted speaking times, repeating almost verbatim what several others have said, and I have contemplated asking if anybody had a comment not related to a certain issue. But I held my tongue, because I didn't want anybody feeling they had been stifled. Back to the pigshit:

Monday News: Twelve thousand, seven hundred eighty


HALF OF NC ADULTS HAVE RECEIVED AT LEAST ONE DOSE OF VACCINE: At least 980,498 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the coronavirus, and 12,780 have died since March 2020, according to state health officials. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported 1,932 new COVID-19 cases on Friday, up from 1,798 reported the day before. At least 1,006 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus as of Friday, down from 1,031 on Thursday. As of Wednesday, the latest day for which data is available, 4.4% of coronavirus tests were reported positive. Roughly 50% of adults in North Carolina have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine and 43.6% were fully vaccinated as of Thursday.

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages


EXPAND VOTING OPPORTUNITIES, DON'T LIMIT THEM: Current state law requires any mail-in ballots to be postmarked on Election Day AND be received by the local board of elections within three days – unless they are sent from those in the military service or overseas. Now, the folks who run the legislature noticed that 45% of the nearly 1.1 million North Carolinians who voted by mail were Democrats compared to a mere 21% being Republicans. Now they want to command that ALL mail-in ballots must be received ON election day. The impact would be significant. They really think they’d be curtailing Democratic votes. But the reality is that there’s no telling which voters cast ballots when. There is no reason to set this date other than to deny some voters a chance to cast ballots. Votes aren’t officially counted for several days after Election Day – with the official canvass. The REAL votes for president aren’t cast until the Electoral College meets on the Monday after the second Wednesday in December, as set by federal law.


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