Friday, February 17, 2017

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

“Cat Call” by Vinegar Mother - BTR Live Studio [ep583]

Vinegar Mother is a progressive soul group begun in Connecticut and now making moves in the New York City music scene. Comprised of Julia Zivic on vocals, Itamar Gov-Ari on keyboard, Jason Zivic on drums, Paulie Beladino on guitar, and Mike Roninson on bass, the band is dedicated to bringing some much-needed good vibes to 2017. They dropped by Serious Business Music in DUMBO to share some of that with you for this session!

The Sunny Seat EP is available now.

Listen to the audio podcast for more music and interview:

Official website for Vinegar Mother:

Monday, February 13, 2017

Never Give Up Your Seat for a N****r' – White Louisiana Judge Banned From Restaurant After Making Racist Statement

While dining in Sammy’s Grill in Baton Rouge Louisiana one patron overheard a judge spew racist comments about a woman. When Judge Mike Erwin saw man sharing his seat with a Black woman in the crowded restaurant, he allegedly said, “You should have made her get her fat n****r ass up.”

On February 3, Baton Rouge resident Kaneitra Johnson witnessed the ordeal and made a public Facebook post over the weekend that recounted the story.
“I’m halfway on the seat and the Lyft driver is on the other half of the seat,” Johnson said. “Then he asked for his jacket. All of a sudden I hear this older man behind me tell the Lyft driver, ‘You never give up your seat for a n*gger.’”
Johnson said the man continued, “You should have made her get her fat n*gger a** up.”
Eventually the police were called and questioned the older man who made the comments. Johnson later learned the racist man was Judge Mike Erwin of Louisiana’s 19th Judicial District Court
According to Johnson’s post, no action by police or Sammy’s was taken against Erwin.
However, when Sammy’s grill manager Andy McKay, who was absent that evening, was made aware of the situation, he took matters into his own hand.
“I wasn’t there that night, so I can’t comment on the details, but I know police were called,” McKay told The Root“I can also tell you that the owner, Sammy Nagem, has made it clear that Judge Erwin is no longer welcome here.
“We will refuse his business,” McKay added.
While working for the 19th Judicial District Court, Erwin has frequently been in control of the outcomes for many Black men and women. For him to use such vile language about Black people means his abilities as a judge should be questioned.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

BREAKING: Mitch McConnell Implicated In Coverup Of Russia/Trump Election Meddling, FBI Inquiry

With many high-ranking congressional Republicans calling for a full investigation into the CIA’s report of interference by the Russians into the 2016 presidential election, it has been revealed that one, Senate Majority Leader, Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, knew about the hacks long before the election.
During a preliminary secret briefing for congressional leaders in September, McConnell dismissed the findings and cast doubts about the accuracy of the data. As reported by the Business Insider, several unnamed officials stated that McConnell even went so far as to threaten to rebuke the Obama administration if it publicly challenged Russia over the cyberattacks.

Despite recommendations from his own country’s intelligence stating that Russia was interfering with the U.S. elections — well enough in advance of the election to counter the cyberattacks — McConnell dismissed them and refused to act, and was complicit in covering them up.
According to The Washington Post, the CIA performed and presented a secret investigation into the suspected interference of the 2016 U.S. presidential election by Russian hackers backed by Moscow. The difference between the CIA’s report in September and the one presented to Congress last week is that, although they were aware of the cyber espionage as far back as July, they have now concluded that the purpose of the hacks were to help Donald Trump win the presidency.
U.S. intelligence has identified the individuals who provided thousands of stolen Democratic Party emails, and uncovered their connections to the Russian government. The CIA secret assessment concluded that not only did the Russian cyberattacks shake the American people’s faith in the system, they intended to aid the Republican candidate in becoming the next U.S. president.
A senior U.S. intelligence official presented the findings to U.S. senators, saying:
‘It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia’s goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected. That’s the consensus view.’
High-level senators were updated with the latest CIA assessment last week in a closed-door meeting. Officials requesting anonymity told the Washington Post that intelligence told the senators that it was “quite clear” that the Russian government’s intention was to see Donald Trump assume the presidency.
Last Friday, President Obama announced that he had ordered a “full review” of the Russian cyber-espionage and wants the full details before leaving the Oval Office in January.
McConnell has been open about his favoritism of the Republican president-elect, and had vowed to obstruct the Obama administration from the president’s early days in office. As reported in POLITICO, Donald Trump also recently hired McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, to be his secretary of transportation. Chao also worked under George W. Bush as his secretary of labor and deputy secretary of transportation.
McConnell seems to have no problem using his position as Senate Majority Leader to further his political ambitions. He also said that despite the implied conflict of interest, he would not absent himself from the vote on his wife’s appointment, according to the Washington Post.
‘Someone actually asked if I was going to recuse myself. Let me be quote clear: I will not be recusing myself.’
The Trump team also dismissed the updated findings on Friday, releasing a statement that read:
President-elect Trump has been dismissing the findings of U.S. intelligence agencies throughout his campaign and since winning the election on Nov. 8. He has been regularly skipping intelligence briefings, as well. President Obama has ordered his national security team to provide Trump and his cohort, Mike Pence, access to his daily briefings, but Trump has been ignoring the majority of the meetings and averaging only one per week since he became president-elect, According to MSNBC.
Mitch McConnell’s policy of personal power grab at the expense of Americans continues. Although he has given a slight head nod to the need to investigate further into the Russian hacks, he has also stated that the investigation should be done through regular channels; namely the Senate Intelligence Committee of which he is a member, raising more suspicions into the senator’s possible collusion into covering up the Russian interference in the U.S. Election.

Weekend Show Highlight- Vinegar Mother Feb. 12th, 2017 #BrooklynBazaar


Conversation With Sleigh Bells Live Podcast Taping | Kaufman Music Center

Thursday, February 09, 2017 | 7:30pm
Brooklyn rock duo Sleigh Bells to delve into the specific decisions that have gone into creating their exuberantly brash and visceral songs. A “former teen-pop singer turned punk-rock badass,”

Talib Kweli | Highline Ballroom

Friday, Feb 10, 2017 | 6:30 PM Doors
Brooklyn’s own hip hop recording artist, entrepreneur, and social activist Talib Kweli returns on center stage with guests Styles P & K’Valentine.

Shy Girls, Flamingosis, Ex Reyes | Music Hall Of Williamsburg

Friday February 10, 2017 | 8:00PM
A night of electrifying cinematic avant-soul bound to make you sweat all night!

2017 Reggae Bash | The Silent Barn

Saturday February 11th, 2017 | 10:00PM
A reggae & dancehall night – come ready to dance to Bob Marley, Vybz Kartel, Korede Bello, Gyptian, DJ Taj and much more! Featuring DJ’s RECK MILLZ and MO hosted by ASHLEY.

Vinegar Mother, The Textiles, Tabemono, C3

Sunday, February 12th, 2017 | Brooklyn Bazaar
In the vein of neo-soul genre-benders Hiatus Kaiyote, Vinegar Mother bring sexy grooves and impeccable musicianship to Greenpoint’s Brooklyn Bazaar.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Nashville police officer fatally shoots man after he bolted from traffic stop

A Nashville man was shot and killed by a police officer after a foot chase triggered a series of scuffles and gunfire on Friday afternoon, authorities said.
Jocques Scott Clemmons ran a stop sign around 1 p.m. and was subsequently pulled over by officer Josh Lippert, who was riding in an unmarked car in the city's East End neighborhood, according to a release from the Metro Nashville Police Department. 
As Lippert got out of his cruiser, surveillance video provided by police shows Clemmons tackling the officer to the ground before running off. Lippert quickly got to his feet and chased after Clemmons.  
A second fight broke out as Lippert tried to arrest Clemmons in a nearby parking lot, cops said. In the commotion, Clemmons stumbled to the ground, dropping a revolver he had been keeping in his waistband, officials said. 
Josh Lippert (left) is on administrative assignment after shooting Jocques Scott Clemmons (right) during a struggle.

Josh Lippert (left) is on administrative assignment after shooting Jocques Scott Clemmons (right) during a struggle.

Lippert tried to kick the gun away, but Clemmons allegedly picked it up, and refused to drop it despite shouted commands, according to cops. 
"Lippert, believing he was in imminent danger, fired on Clemmons just as Clemmons was turning to move between two parked vehicles," police said in a statement.
Lippert fired three shots, fatally striking Clemmons in the lower back. 
Surveillance video provided by cops showed Lipper opening fire at Clemmons. 

Surveillance video provided by cops showed Lipper opening fire at Clemmons. 

Clemmons was taken to a local hospital, but could not be saved. 
Police shared a picture of a loaded .357 magnum on their Twitter account, and said it belonged to the victim.
Lippert,a five-year veteran, was placed on administrative assignment as the shooting is being investigated.
Police said they later recovered a magnum pistol.

Clemmons was convicted of a drug felony in 2014, and was not allowed to carry a firearm due to his probation status, cops said. 
It was not immediately clear why Clemmons charged at Lippert, though cops speculated that carrying a loaded firearm illegally could have been a reason. 
But nearby resident Brenda Morrow mused that the shooting could prompt some skepticism.
"A person is shot in the back," Morrow told The Tennessean. "That means he's fleeing; he's no threat."    

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Before Nordstrom Cut Ties with Ivanka, Its Three Presidents Sent This Memo About the Muslim Ban to Employees

WHITE FEMINISM: So last season.

Last night, the New York Times reported that Seattle-based retailer Nordstrom would be severing its relationship from Ivanka Trump's brand of shoes and handbags. The company defended the move as apolitical—one made purely because of "performance" issues—amid a Trump products boycott campaign called #GrabYourWallet.
But while the decision to drop Ivanka Trump from the store may have been based on performance, it was President Donald Trump's Muslim ban that inspired the three presidents of the company to send a memo about immigrants to all Nordstrom employees three days before the Ivanka news broke.
The memo, sent by brothers Peter, Erik, and Blake Nordstrom, read (in part):
When John W. Nordstrom came to the U.S. as an immigrant, he was given opportunities that allowed him to find a more prosperous and happy life. In so many ways, our humble beginning and the work ethic and gratitude that goes with it helped shape the culture of our company to this day. Over 116 years we have been fortunate to be able to build on the foundation JWN laid for us, thanks to all of you who have chosen to bring your unique experiences and backgrounds to work here at Nordstrom every day. We currently employ more than 76,000 people who comprise different races, ethnicities and genders. We literally have thousands of employees who are first and second generation immigrants. Every one of your unique qualities brings a richness that allows us to better reflect and serve the multi-cultured communities we’re a part of and ultimately makes us a better company. We are a better place with you here, no doubt about it.
It’s important that we reiterate our values to all of you and make it clear that we support each of our employees. We will continue to value diversity, inclusion, respect, and kindness… you can count on that.
The memo also noted that the company was in the process of figuring out which employees would be affected by the executive order, and would be connecting with those employees to offer support.

Nordstrom, however, did not respond to a request for comment on whether the company endorsed the Washington Attorney General's lawsuit against the Trump administration over its Muslim ban executive order.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Republicans push anti-protest laws

Bills targeting nonviolent protests are multiplying across the country.

Demonstrators holds banners and signs as they protest during a march in downtown Washington in opposition of President-elect Donald Trump, Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. 

As people critical of President Trump’s Muslim ban flocked to airports this weekend to show their support for immigrants and refugees, one major airport decided to crack down on protesters.
Denver International Airport (DIA) began enforcing a rule on Sunday that requires anyone interested in demonstrating to submit an application seven days in advance. The regulation was challenged by protesters, including one who recorded a video criticizing Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez for violating his First Amendment rights.
“Put all the signs away that have anything to do with first amendment expression, political message,” Lopez told demonstrators. “Based on legal advice we are getting at this time from the city attorney, what’s being displayed is a violation of airport rules and regulations.”
“I cannot carry the Constitution without a permit?” a protester asks. “Correct, according to airport rules and regulations,” Lopez responds.

After the video spread on social media, Heath Montgomery, a spokesperson for DIA, told a local reporter that the regulation is intended to protect airport patrons’ safety. “We have to ensure that people who use this airport are safe and able to go about their business uninterrupted and that’s going to remain our focus,” he said.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that airports are not traditional public forums, so they can regulate people in ways that may seem to violate their First Amendment rights.
But the movement toward limiting protesters’ free speech rights is not confined to the terminals of DIA. In anticipation of an active protest movement during Trump’s administration, multiple Republican-controlled states are currently pushing for legislation that would discourage and even criminalize nonviolent, public demonstrations.
In Minnesota, a bill passed a Republican-controlled committee last week that would allow cities to sue protesters in order to collect money to pay police forces required at the demonstration. Lawmakers drafted the legislation in response to massive Black Lives Matter protests that erupted in the state after a police officer shot and killed Philando Castile.
Chip Gibbons, the policy and legislative council for the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, wrote on his group’s website that he believes this proposed law violates the First Amendment.
“It is most likely unconstitutional, and if passed will have a chilling effect on speech as individuals will worry if they can be sued by the government for exercising their constitutional rights,” he wrote.
While they attempt to open up the laws to sue protesters, Minnesota Republicans are also considering a bill that would increase the potential penalty for nonviolent demonstrations. Introduced in early January and named the “Minnesota Public Safety Personnel Protection Act,” the legislation would mandate a penalty of no less than 12 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000 to any protester that obstructs police or other public employees.
And in Michigan, Republican lawmakers are attacking both unions and protesters by pushing legislation that would increase fines against picketers to $1,000 per person per day of a picket and $10,000 per day for an organization or union involved in the picket. The bill passed the state House of Representatives in December, but was set aside by the Senate.
Law enforcement form a line across Interstate 94 on Saturday, July 9, 2016, in St. Paul, Minn., in response to protesters who blocked the highway in response to the death of Philando Castile. CREDIT: AP Photo/Joe Danborn
Taking a different tactic, four other states are considering anti-protest laws that would target demonstrators who protest on the streets, according to The Intercept. The bills have all been introduced in the last few months as responses to high-profile protests by Black Lives Matter activists and opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline that shut down highways.
The Intercept summarized the bills that Republican lawmakers have proposed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Washington, and Iowa:
In North Dakota, for instance, Republicans introduced a bill last week that would allow motorists to run over and kill any protester obstructing a highway as long as a driver does so accidentally. In Minnesota, a bill introduced by Republicans last week seeks to dramatically stiffen fines for freeway protests and would allow prosecutors to seek a full year of jail time for protesters blocking a highway. Republicans in Washington state have proposed a plan to reclassify as a felony civil disobedience protests that are deemed “economic terrorism” … And in Iowa a Republican lawmaker has pledged to introduce legislation to crack down on highway protests.
Though Democrats in state legislatures may be able to block at least some of these bills, the flood of legislative proposals stemming from anti-protester sentiment is worrisome for civil liberties advocates. Lee Rowland, a senior staff attorney at the American Civil Liberties Union, told ThinkProgress she finds it “troubling” that states would prioritize anti-free speech legislation at the beginning of their legislative sessions.
“This is a marked uptick in bills that would criminalize or penalize protected speech and protest, and every person should be alarmed at that trend,” she said, calling the bills unconstitutional. “We should also be alarmed by the attitude they betray, which is that when Americans get out into the streets and make their voices heard — recently, in record numbers — their elected representatives’ response is not to listen to those concerns but to attempt to silence and criminalize them.”
“That goes against the very fabric of our constitutional democracy, and legislators introducing these bills should be ashamed,” she added. “To try to silence those who are speaking up right now is a betrayal of American values.”