Rasheed Robinson warns that the US government has jacked up intimidation and surveillance of Black Activists, even as they downplay actual terrorism from White Supremacists. Freedom of Information requests unearthed documents showing that ...
The federal government, often in coordination with local police departments across the country, continues to use its expanded authority, dating from the beginning of the “War on Terror,” to demonize and intimidate Black activists—people who are rightly demanding that our country be more just—through surveillance and harassment.
I agree with Robinson, that ...
Conservatives voices from Fox News to the White House openly demand that law enforcement pursue policies that discriminate against Black Americans and then protest when they do not. Black people speaking truth to power isn't a threat to the country’s national security; it is a threat to the American system of justice that uses racist lies to justify rampant discrimination.
Today's FBI racism is worse that in Dr. King's time Consider that an FBI memo identified Black civil rights leaders as “Black Identity Extremists,” who pose a threat to national security.
As far as I'm concerned, it's the Trump Administration and GOP hardliners who threaten national security by criminalizing people just exercising their constitutional rights. Aren't they acting like White Identity Extremists?
As a kid, I thought that that sort of institutionalized racist thuggery, and suppression of dissent, was a relic of the US's past!
More disturbing bits from the article:
One FBI email chain showed that the agency maintains 24-hour surveillance of some Black activists [...] Another set of documents showed how the FBI performed a detailed search of the vehicle records of someone who was [...] parked in front of [an] activist’s house, essentially criminalizing a person simply for associating with that activist.
[...] the specter of surveillance is designed to keep some people from exercising their free-speech rights in the first place. One recent study by communications scholar Elizabeth Stoycheff has shown that people censor themselves on social networks and refrain from posting comments with dissenting views when they’re aware that an intelligence agency is monitoring online activities. Another study based on a National Telecommunications and Information Administration survey of 41,000 U.S. households found that one in five people surveyed avoided online activity because of concerns about government surveillance.
(Bolding is mine.)
"people censor themselves." Self-censorship does the work for those who would censor. Women who self-censor become part of the problem, not of the solution. The same for Blacks, Irish, Japanese, Cubans, or any of the many other groups struggling to live the "American Dream." Self-censorship is an example of "foot-binding/mind-binding." We self-censor to survive. Someone, somewhere, pays the price for speaking out against bigotry and the rest suffer in silence.
Citizens of U.S.A. can do better than that!