Hello from Venice, Italy ! Yesterday spent a long day walking, gawking and photographing yesterday so having a lazy morning this am.
Saw this and thought you might be interested....
From my Occupy Santa Fe FBstream:
Amnesty International sends team within US for first time as National Guard deployed
Michael Brown shooting:
Amnesty International sends team within US for first time as National...
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Had read on DK where AG Holder going to Ferguson. Nice.
Glad to see Amnesty International observers going as well, given the allegations/evidence of government trampling on human rights!
For those who might not be familiar with AI, here's an excerpt from Wikipedia entry:
Amnesty International (commonly known as Amnesty and AI) is a non-governmental organisation focused on human rights with over 3 million members and supporters around the world. The stated objective of the organisation is "to conduct research and generate action to prevent and end grave abuses of human rights, and to demand justice for those whose rights have been violated."
Amnesty International was founded in London in 1961, following the publication of the article "The Forgotten Prisoners" in The Observer 28 May 1961, by the lawyer Peter Benenson. Amnesty draws attention to human rights abuses and campaigns for compliance with international laws and standards. It works to mobilise public opinion to put pressure on governments that let abuse take place. The organisation was awarded the 1977 Nobel Peace Prize for its "campaign against torture," and the United Nations Prize in the Field of Human Rights in 1978.
From Occupy Santa Fe link to The Independent (UK)
As anger erupted again on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, a human rights team from Amnesty International worked on the ground in the US for the first time ever.
Confrontation flared up after an autopsy found that Michael Brown, an unarmed teenager who was fatally shot by an officer on 9 August, had suffered at six bullet wounds including one in the top of his head.
Eye-witnesses report seeing police, with no visible ID badges, hurling tear gas and rubber bullets at protesters and threatening members of the press in another night of demonstrations.
Amnesty International, said it would be observing police and protester activity and gathering testimonies as well as training local activists “on methods of non-violent protest” in an “unprecedented” move by the campaigners.
Huffpo had this on AI :
Amnesty International Calls For Investigation Of Ferguson Police Tactics
“Amnesty International has a long and tested history of monitoring and investigating police conduct, not just in foreign countries, but right here at home in the United States,” executive director Steven W. Hawkins said in a Sunday statement. “Our delegation traveled to Missouri to let the authorities in Ferguson know that the world is watching. We want a thorough investigation into Michael Brown’s death and the series of events that followed.”
In addition to a review of local police training and tactics, the group called on state and federal officials to complete a "prompt, thorough, independent and impartial investigation" into Brown's death. (Brown was shot and killed by Darren Wilson, a white police officer.)
“This is a moment for people around the country -- and around the world -- to join the Ferguson community in raising concerns about race and policing, and about the impact of militarization on our fundamental right to peacefully assemble," Hawkins said.
The recent protests in Ferguson -- where police officers have donned riot gear and used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse crowds -- have shined a spotlight on the increasing militarization of local police units.
What about us? What will we do for Ferguson? Our own community?
In case you missed it check Meteor Blades Aggressive activism needed to push Rep. Hank Johnson's proposal to stop militarizing police
The question is whether the invading-army appearance of the police presence in Ferguson could, just maybe, have sparked a new (and lasting) attitude among rank-and-file Americans about the unacceptability of militarization of local police forces that many were oblivious to previously. And whether such an attitude shift will also take place in Congress. No way the latter will happen without an aggressive activist push. And, while crucial, getting rid of the Pentagon's hardware giveaways is just one piece of action needed to redress the situation, although it is an excellent place to start.
I signed the DailyKos petition, and set a goal to work to demilitarize police when get back to US.ell
Probably time to make another contribution to Amnesty International as well:
From the website:
How you can help
Amnesty International doesn’t just reveal the outrage of human rights abuse but inspires hope for a better world through public action and international solidarity.
We help stop human rights abuses by mobilizing our members and supporters to put pressure on governments, armed groups, companies and intergovernmental bodies
There are many ways you can help us, including making a donation, joining Amnesty International and taking action
12:47 AM PT: Pic of AI team on the ground in Ferguson CREDIT: http://instagram.com/...
12:50 AM PT: More on way to join AI team:
CREDIT: http://instagram.com/... http://photos-e.ak.instagram.com/...
1:06 AM PT: Link to Amnesty press release on Ferguson Press Release
August 18, 2014
Amnesty International USA Calls for Investigation of Police Tactics in Ferguson
Organization On the Ground in Ferguson Monitoring Policing of Protests
Contact: Amanda Simon, email@example.com, 202.680.2866, @AIUSAmedia or Gabe Cahn, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202.412.1678