Remembering Jesse Jackson

Today’s events reminded me of the time I heard Jesse Jackson speak.

I spent January of 1984 in Jackson, Mississippi, sleeping on the floor of a church and studying the Civil Rights movement. While we were there, Jackson, who was running for president, came to speak at Jackson State.

Before the speech I came walking across the gym floor carrying a brown paper bag. After I took my seat, the security guys (all white, like me) singled me out of the mostly black crowd and brought me down under the bleachers.

They wanted to know what I had in the bag.

I was a little embarrassed when they looked inside, only to find a pocket New Testament and a dozen or so vanilla sandwich cookies.

They let me go, and I rejoined my friends and the gym full of students. We sang “This Little Light of Mine, I’m Gonna Let it Shine,” then marched downtown to register voters for the fall election. I drove folks back to Jackson State in the school van.

A couple weeks later I hitchhiked to California to follow Jesus. But that’s a different story.

Teen sustains non-life-threatening injuries in an apparent wolf bite

Minnesota DNR news release

A 16-year-old boy was injured in an apparent wolf bite early Saturday morning, Aug. 24, near the lakeshore of the West Winnie Campground on Lake Winnibigoshish in north-central Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

The boy sustained multiple puncture wounds and a laceration to his head of about 11 centimeters long. The wolf ran into the woods after the boy kicked it.

After receiving local first-aid, the boy was transported to a hospital in Bemidji. The wound required multiple staples to close, but was not life-threatening.

Officers from the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, U.S. Forest Service and the DNR collected reports from the boy and the boy’s father, as well as others at the camp.

Statements from other campers indicated there were other incidents at the U.S. Forest Service campground where an animal bit through tents, one resulting in the puncturing of an air mattress. Another camper indicated that he witnessed a wolf near his campsite with coloration and markings matching the description of the animal involved in the attack on the boy.

“This is an extremely rare incident and not normal wolf behavior,” said Tom Provost, regional manager of the DNR’s Enforcement Division. “Because wolf bites or attacks on humans are so rare, they are poorly understood. These rare incidents have usually involved food-habituated wolves and have led to minor injuries, but no fatalities.”

Before this incident, a serious injury or fatal attack on a human had never been documented in Minnesota. There have been two wolf attack fatalities in North America in the last decade. One was in northern Canada and another was in Alaska.

Enforcement officers from the U.S. Forest Service, Leech Lake and the DNR briefly located the animal matching the description in the wooded area adjacent to the campground, but were unable to immediately kill it. U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services was called for assistance in locating and capturing the wolf.

On early Monday morning, an average-sized male wolf of about 75 pounds, matching the description of the wolf in the attack, was trapped and killed in the campground.

The wolf is being taken to the University of Minnesota veterinary diagnostic lab to be tested for rabies. Also, the lab will collect samples for DNA analyses and complete a thorough medical examination to determine the health of the animal.

Traps will be left in place for one more night to be sure another wolf is not present in the area. The Forest Service has closed the campground until further notice.

Wolf safety tips
Always be alert in the outdoors. Wild animals biting or attacking humans is a rare occurrence but people should be aware of the possibility and know how to react.

Animals are attracted to campgrounds due to food/cooking smells.  It is important not to feed wild animals.

Don’t make homes or camps attractive to wild animals:

  • Keep a clean camp; don’t dispose of food by dumping into the campfire.
  • Don’t leave unwashed cooking utensils around your camp.
  • Don’t leave garbage unsecured.
  • Don’t cook food near your tent or sleeping area.
  • Don’t allow pets to freely roam away from your home or camp.
  • Don’t leave pet food or other food attractants out near your home or camp.
  • Don’t bury garbage, pack it out.

In the rare event that you do have an encounter with an aggressive wolf:

  • Don’t run, but act aggressively, stepping toward the wolf and yelling or clapping your hands if it tries to approach.
  • Do not turn your back toward an aggressive wolf, but continue to stare directly at it. If you are with a companion and more than one wolf is present place yourselves back to back and slowly move away from the wolves.
  • Retreat slowly while facing the wolf and act aggressively.
  • Stand your ground if a wolf attacks and fight with any means possible (use sticks, rocks, ski poles, fishing rods or whatever you can find).
  • Use air horns or other noise makers.
  • Use bear spray or firearms if necessary.
  • Climb a tree if necessary, wolves cannot climb trees.

Go away, George Zimmerman! –

As Trayvon Martin’s parents headed to Washington for a protest commemorating the 1963 March for Jobs and Freedom, their son’s killer was touring the factory that produced the gun he used to kill their son, and posing for celebrity photos while he was there. Fittingly, celebrity gossip site TMZ broke the news of George Zimmerman’s visit to the Kel-Tec factory last Thursday. Trayvon Martin’s killer is clearly enjoying his post-acquittal right-wing folk-hero status.

via Go away, George Zimmerman! –

War on Leaks Is Pitting Journalist vs. Journalist –

“By no means was I treated as a hero when I first came forward. I was indicted and spent two years in court,” Mr. Ellsberg said in an interview. “But in those days, journalists were not turning on journalists. With Snowden in particular, you have a split between truly independent journalists and those who are tools — and I mean that in every sense of the term — of the government. Toobin and Grunwald are doing the work of the government to maintain relationships and access.”

via War on Leaks Is Pitting Journalist vs. Journalist –

Journalist wars

This former (pseudo) journalist sides with the “non-journalists” on this one. Just because you claim to be objective doesn’t make you a journalist, or prove that you are objective. Writing can be objective, but people can’t be. There’s an old saying, “Opinions are like a——s; everybody’s got one.” That includes journalists, and anyone who says they don’t is lying which is most of the respectable media establishment in the USA.

“So which is it? Does having an opinion disqualify one from being a journalist? Or can you have an opinion and still retain the coveted “journalist” status and protections? The answer today clearly depends on the kind of opinion, and whether it serves or challenges those in power.”

“By contrast, Grunwald has saber-rattling opinions that proudly support the government’s drone strikes and surveillance. Sorkin’s opinions promote Wall Street’s interests. Broder had opinions that supported, among other things, the government’s corporate-serving “free” trade agenda. Woodward has opinions backing an ever-bigger Pentagon budget that enriches defense contractors. Goldberg promotes the Military-Industrial Complex’s generally pro-war opinions. Friedman is all of them combined, promoting both “free” trade and “suck on this” militarism. Because these voices loyally promote the unstatedassumptions that serve the power structure and that dominate American politics, all of their particular opinions aren’t even typically portrayed as opinions; they are usually portrayed as noncontroversial objectivity. And because their opinions support the government and corporate establishment, those promoting them get to keep their journalism credentials — and all the attendant protections.”