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Georgia

Atlanta Fights To Save Its Forest

Activists from throughout the country have converged on Atlanta this week to oppose the construction of the police training facility and the destruction of the forest upon which the project depends. Dubbed “Cop City” by its critics, the 85-acre police training facility carries a price tag of $90 million for its initial phase. In September, 2021, Atlanta’s City Council approved a proposal to construct the facility within a huge swath of forested land in unincorporated DeKalb county southeast of Atlanta. The particular parcel of land slated to become a police training center is the former home of a city-run prison farm, which operated in the area from 1920 to 1989. The facility was used to house prisoners from Atlanta who were forced to work on the farm raising food for the city’s prison population.

Sedan Barricades South Power Line Cut Pathway To Atlanta Forest​

A black sedan barreled it’s way into the south power cut blocking off a MAJOR entrance to the woods off Constitution Road across from Black Hall Studios Sunday night, May, 8th, accompanied by a banner that states, “Fuck this World And It’s Cops”– kicking off the, “Week of Action,” to, “Defend the Forest,” in south Atlanta… A huge ass bonfire along with a vast array of fireworks and feral friends silhouetted and serenaded the break in the forest that has now come to be one of the main zones to defend against police incursion into the woods so many people and non-human animals call home. Cop City and Black Hall Studios will NEVER be built as long as Forest Defenders occupy these 500 or so collective acres of woods and comrades continue to engage in the practice that, “solidarity means attack.”

In Georgia, Protesters March At Monument To South’s Pro-Slavery Past

Atlanta, Georgia – Carrying signs decrying “racist traitors,” about a hundred civil rights activists marched and chanted at Georgia’s Stone Mountain on Saturday to protest at the return of an annual celebration of the Confederacy at the foot of a towering monument to the heroes of the South’s pro-slavery past. As dozens of state and local police, including SWAT teams with armored trucks, looked on, the state chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) with 200 supporters gathered for its celebration, which it says honors the sacrifices of their forebears. The Atlanta NAACP and other civil rights supporters, some using megaphones to try to shout down the event, which it views as a salute to the South’s legacy of racism.

Israel Gets Georgia To Strip Free Speech Rights (Again)

After Abby's major legal victory getting Georgia's anti-BDS law ruled unenforceable, Israel has hit back by getting the State Legislature to keep this brazenly unconstitutional law officially on the books.

Three Men Convicted Of Murdering Ahmaud Arbery Sentenced To Life

The three white men convicted of murdering Ahmaud Arbery were sentenced Friday to life in prison, with a judge denying any chance of parole for the father and son who armed themselves and initiated the deadly pursuit of the Black man in February 2020. The life sentences for Travis McMichael, who fatally shot Arbery, and his father, Gregory McMichael, do not carry the possibility of parole. Their neighbor William "Roddie" Bryan will be eligible, however, Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley said. Bryan must serve at least 30 years in prison before he is eligible for parole.

‘Finding Kendrick Johnson’ Reveals FBI’s Complicity In Coverup Of Black Child’s Murder

Millions of people in the United States believe the justice system—from the cops in the street right on up to the judges in the courthouse—is fair and unbiased. Millions of people also believe systemic racial and class biases are relics of a bygone era washed away by progressivism, the election of the First Black President, and the great healer called Time. But those millions of people need to wake up and watch Jason Pollock’s documentary, “Finding Kendrick Johnson” (2021), for a healthy and horrifying dose of reality. The film begins with Kendrick Johnson, a 17-year-old Black student, who was found dead in 2013 inside a rolled-up mat that was propped up against a little-used wall in the gymnasium of Lowndes High School in Valdosta, Georgia.

School Bus Drivers Protest Inadequate COVID-19 Protection And Low Pay

On September 3, 54 school bus drivers in the Savannah-Chatham County Public School System SCCSS) in Georgia began a rolling sickout and staged a protest at the school district offices over pay structure and lack of adequate protections from COVID-19. The sickouts forced the school board to scramble for drivers to transport students. The school relies on about 218 drivers to ferry more than 18,700 students to and from school; the 54 drivers who are protesting represent about 22 percent of the district’s drivers. A school district spokesperson reported that the district had been forced to call upon private coaches and other employees with commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) to make up for the deficit. The school board released a statement on Friday saying that they were already understaffed, and they were trying to hire more drivers.

Ex-Prosecutor Indicted For Misconduct In Ahmaud Arbery Death

Savannah, Ga. — A former Georgia prosecutor was indicted Thursday on misconduct charges alleging she used her position to shield the men who chased and killed Ahmaud Arbery from being charged with crimes immediately after the shootings. A grand jury in coastal Glynn County indicted former Brunswick Judicial Circuit District Attorney Jackie Johnson on a felony count of violating her oath of office and hindering a law enforcement officer, a misdemeanor. The indictment resulted from an investigation Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr requested last year into local prosecutors’ handling of Arbery’s slaying after a cellphone video of the shooting and a delay in charges sparked a national outcry. “While an indictment was returned today, our file is not closed, and we will continue to investigate in order to pursue justice,” Carr, a Republican, said in a statement.

Nabisco Workers In Georgia On Strike

BCTGM International President Anthony Shelton issued the following statement in support of members of BCTGM Local 42 (Atlanta, Ga.) who are on strike against Nabisco in Norcross, Ga.: “Early this morning, members of Local 42 at the Nabisco distribution center outside Atlanta joined their Brothers and Sisters in Portland, Ore., Aurora, Col., Richmond, Va. and Chicago, Ill. in striking Nabisco. Nabisco workers in all five locations are saying strong and clear: stop exporting our jobs to Mexico and end your demands for contract concessions. The BCTGM will take all appropriate action necessary in order to reach a contract settlement that treats Nabisco workers fairly and equitably.

Abby Martin Had Free Speech Rights Violated By Georgia’s Anti-BDS Law

A federal court ruled in favor of journalist Abby Martin, who was barred from speaking at Georgia Southern University after she refused to pledge she would not boycott Israel.

How A Black And Latinx Coalition Turned Utilities Back On In LaGrange

Anton Flores thought it would be simple to help someone get their water turned back on.  "I had a single mom, who was undocumentable, whose utilities had been cut off, and she came to me," Flores, an immigration activist in the small Georgia city of LaGrange, said. He helped new immigrants navigate unfamiliar systems frequently. He figured all they had to do was come up with the money—so they did. Together, they went down to the municipal utility office. But it turned out, getting utilities turned on in LaGrange was a lot more complicated than having the money to pay.  In fact, for the undocumented woman in question, it was impossible: with no social security number, the municipal clerk denied her request.

‘A Betrayal’: Georgia Voters Enraged Over Democrats Promise Of ‘$2000 Checks’

President-elect Joe Biden released his long-awaited stimulus proposal last Thursday that contained an inauspicious provision for millions of Americans expecting additional $2,000 stimulus checks. Instead of that long-promised amount, Biden’s proposal only calls for an additional $1,400 stimulus payment. Georgia voters who recently delivered the Democratic Party control of the U.S. Senate by electing Reverend Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff say they feel betrayed, let down, and outraged at what NBC Peacock host Mehdi Hasan has termed “Biden’s first broken campaign promise.” Oscar Zaro voted for the Democratic Party slate during the recent Senate runoff election.

Update: Abby Martin’s Lawsuit Over Israel Loyalty Oath Mandate In US

New developments in Abby Martin's major lawsuit challenging unconstitutional pro-Israel, anti-BDS law in the state of Georgia. Abby Martin: "In February of this year, I was supposed to give a keynote speech at Georgia Southern University. Before the event, I refused to sign a state-mandated pledge to not boycott Israel in order to speak. My invitation was rescinded and the conference canceled as a result. I decided to sue the state of Georgia because signing an anti-BDS clause in order to work in the state is a direct violation of my rights to Constitutional free speech and to participate in political boycotts."

US Deports Migrant Women Who Alleged Abuse By Georgia Doctor

The Trump administration is trying to deport several women who allege they were mistreated by a Georgia gynecologist at an immigration detention center, according to their lawyers. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has already deported six former patients who complained about Dr. Mahendra Amin, who has been accused of operating on migrant women without their consent or performing procedures that were medically unnecessary and potentially endangered their ability to have children.

Report: Georgia Wrongfully Purged 200,000 Voters

A seven-year investigation of voter suppression in Georgia has found that the state likely removed 200,000 voters from its rolls who were, in fact, eligible to vote. The voters whose registrations were removed were also overwhelmingly concentrated in the counties comprising the Atlanta Metro area, according to initial findings released on Wednesday. Conducted by the Palast Investigative Fund, which specializes in data journalism, and released by the ACLU of Georgia, the report reviewed more than 300,000 registered voters whom the state had purged from its rolls.
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