🤬 Georgia’s war on black voters

If you have not heard about what is happening down in Georgia, the state, which is run almost entirely by Republicans, is doing everything in their power to prevent black people from voting.

The state is rejecting absentee ballots, removing hundreds of thousands of people from the voter rolls, putting tens of thousands of voter applications on-hold ahead of the election, as well as physically stopping residents from voting. The majority (~70%) of those being prevented from voting are black. Simply put, Georgia’s Secretary of State Brian Kemp is systematically using his office to suppress votes and sway the November 2018 election.

This is a very, very dark time for democracy and representative government in the United States. There is no other way to put this: The Republican party is completely and wholly evil. The idea of minority voters participating in elections is anathema to Georgia Republicans.

Oh, and I nearly forgot to mention that Georgia votes entirely using digital machines which do not produce a paper voting record. The software used on Georgia’s voting machines is more than 10 years old. Additionally, after reports surfaced which showed that the Russians hacked state election systems around the country, Brian Kemp rejected federal offers to help secure Georgia’s voting systems. Since 2016, no actions have been performed in Georgia to increase the security of their voting systems.

The idea that we will be able to trust the results of Georgia’s 2018 midterm elections is laughable.

🎵 Music of the Week: W42, 2018

This week brings Local H to the blog. Formed in 1990 in Illinois, Local H has been pumping out music for many years. In fact, they’re still releasing new music as evidenced by ‘Innocents’ in the playlist below (released Aug 14, 2018).

‘Bound For The Floor’ was in my top-10 rotation in 8th/9th grade and was burned to many, many CDs. Nowadays I find myself listening to their cover of TV On The Radio’s ‘Wolf Like Me’.

🧠 TIL the owner of In-N-Out is not very charitable

In-N-Out, the company that prints Christian bible verses on their product packaging, is owned by a person who does not follow the teachings of that bible they quote. Lynsi Snyder, the 36-year old billionaire heir to the In-N-Out empire, was recently given a score of 1 out of 5 for philanthropy by the Forbes 400 list. That’s the lowest score Forbes gives to the people they rank.

What people do with their money is up to them. However, when you claim to be such a strong follower of a religion that you print that religion’s beliefs on your company’s products, the stench of hypocrisy is impossible to overlook when you ignore one of the central tenants of that religion.

Lynsi Snyder – Forbes 400 [Forbes]

🤬 Police are untouchable

In July 2015 a pregnant woman named Mara Mancini heard a commotion outside of her home in Indianapolis. She stepped out onto her front porch to investigate and that’s when a police dog from the Indianapolis Police Department ran up and severely mauled her.

The mauling left here with irreparable nerve damage to her arm which has seriously impaired its ability to function. The medical bills from multiple surgeries to fix the damage have forced Mancini into bankruptcy and the pain medications she took caused her son to be born with a drug dependency.

Instead of owning their actions, the Indianapolis Police Department denied all responsibility in the mauling. Mancini then sued the department for violating her Constitutional rights under the 4th Amendment, arguing that the attack violated her right against unreasonable searches and seizures.

Last week a judge ruled on the case that Mancini’s 4th Amendment rights were not violated because the police dog was not intentionally directed to attack her. Rather, she was considered an unintended bystander. Using this same line of reasoning, the police can legally shoot anyone as long as the shot was not intentionally directed at the person it hits.

This story is nothing less of disgusting and is an excellent example of how both the American judicial and law enforcement systems are broken. It is also one more example of how police are untouchable when it comes to legal accountability.

Judge: Police dog attack didn’t violate woman’s rights [AP News}

🤬 I am confused about tsunamis

Last week, Indonesia experienced a tsunami after a 7.5 magnitude earthquake occurred near the island of Sulawesi. While the death toll is still rising, it currently stands at 844 people. Regardless of the viewpoint assumed, this event is incredibly sad and horrible.

However, I want to ask a question from my privileged, first-world, well-educated, wealthy-white-male perspective: Why are so many people in tsunami-prone areas ignorant of the danger present in the minutes and hours following an earthquake???

Tsunamis have been occurring for as long as the Earth has held enough water to form oceans, well before the appearance of land animals let alone human beings. After modern humans showed up on the scene, it did not take long for them to understand the danger tsunamis posed and when they were likely to occur. There are many examples from cultures around the planet which explain the danger of tsunamis. From folklore to proverbs, different cultures have used different mechanisms to teach their people about how to avoid tsunamis when they occur. Some of these warning are literally carved in stone. The point I am trying to make is that knowledge about tsunamis has been held for thousands of years, well before computers and modern communications.

If knowledge about tsunamis has been held and well-disseminated for thousands of years, why are hundreds of people killed by tsunamis when they occur? Why do these unfortunate people think that they do not need to avoid low-lying land after strong earthquakes? Do I hold a misunderstanding about just how well known tsunami danger is in developing countries?