Six Ways The Guardian Is Wrong About Ecuador, Again.

Last week The Guardian published a piece that wildly misrepresented the situation in Ecuador, offering a one-sided view of recent events. We’ve previously critiqued the paper’s coverage of Ecuador (check that out here) and regional broadcaster TeleSUR has already produced a video addressing some of the falsehoods from The Guardian‘s latest attempt. Their response focused on presenting footage of opposition violence at protests, which The Guardian had uncritically reported as peaceful. However, The Guardian’s report was so full of omissions and outright falsehoods that we felt a further list was in order to set the record straight. Continue reading

The Unspeakable Depth Of US Racism

My interviewees for this story, from top left: Lauren Butler, Blake Simons, Chanelle Helm, Dimitri Reeves and Prof Gerald Horne.

My interviewees for this story, from top left: Lauren Butler, Blake Simons, Chanelle Helm, Dimitri Reeves, and Prof Gerald Horne.

On my left side was a whole bunch of cops…the riot team. On my right side there was a CVS [pharmacy] burning. So we just said let’s set up right here and perform.

The above are the words of Dimitri Reeves. Reeves is a musician and Michael Jackson tribute artist whose performances on the streets of Baltimore during protests and riots following the alleged murder of Freddie Gray by the Baltimore Police Department, have led to misleading headlines calling him the “Michael Jackson Protester”. In reality Reeves had been performing on those same streets regularly for over two years, since his manager, Vaughan Mason (whose 1980 song “Bounce, Rock, Skate, Roll” will be familiar to roller-disco aficionados) had convinced him that he should follow the examples of great artists like James Brown and Muddy Waters, who began their careers on street corners.

When the protests first broke out Reeves had been at the dentist’s. “We see on CNN, oh wow, this is really going on…We saw places we perform at all the time…I normally see this stuff on TV, movies…when it’s in your backyard it’s a whole ‘nother experience.” Reeves and his manager decided to take their sound system and hit the streets, setting up outside the burning pharmacy. “We did “Will You Be There”, “Heal The World”, and “You Are Not Alone”, and protesters came up, and looters came up, and they said keep on going, they cheered me on.” Continue reading

Who’s Coming North? – Migrants’ Journeys Through Mexico

Don’t miss the Artefact accompanying this piece: A Guided Art Tour of La 72

Ann Coulter thinks they’re more dangerous than ISIS. Donald Trump thinks Mexico is sending them north to hurt us. And Iowa Congressman Steve King thinks they have “calves the size of cantaloupes.”

But who are the actual people at the center of the firestorm? Who are these so-called “illegals” that have invaded the collective nightmares of America’s whitest suburbs?

I recently visited La 72 Hogar, a shelter on the southern border of Mexico that feeds, clothes, houses, and provides legal assistance to migrants crossing Mexico. Many of the folks that pass through La 72 plan to stay in Mexico. Many more plan to come to the United States, with or without papers.

I spoke with several of the migrants – all of whom had normal-sized calves – to find out what spurred them to leave their countries and what they hope to find at their final destination. Continue reading