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‘I would have done 5’: Nashville cop busted for callous post about Philando Castile

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Police officers in two Tennessee cities were swiftly disciplined for social media activity following the fatal shootings of Philando Castile and Alton Sterling this week.

In Nashville, Officer Anthony Venable, an eight-year veteran of the force, was “decommissioned” after posting, “Yeah. I would have done 5,” in a Facebook conversation regarding the shooting death of Castile, who was shot four times during a traffic stop. Venable said the comment was meant to be sarcastic.

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“The police department is treating this matter very seriously and took immediate action, regardless of what he claims the context to have been,” Police Chief Steve Anderson told The Tennessean. Anderson had previously told The Tennessean that he was concerned that people were judging all police by the actions of the police officers involved in the shootings of Sterling and Castile.

“I am extremely concerned and disturbed by the videos and the accounts we have heard thus far coming from Baton Rouge and Falcon Heights,” Anderson said.

A vigil and protest is planned for Friday night in Nashville, and Anderson said that the vigil should go on as scheduled, despite the massacre of police in Dallas Thursday night. Anderson indicated his support for people to express their concerns. He insisted that Venable was not representative of the Nashville force.

He told Nashville Public Radio:  “What he said does not in any way represent the men and women of this police department It was a disservice to the city of Nashville. It was a disservice to this police department. It was a disservice to every individual officer on the street. It’s something that can’t be tolerated.”

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Meanwhile, over in Memphis, the Commercial-Appeal reported that Memphis Interim Director Michael Rallings had suspended two officers for a social media post. The officers posted an image on Snapchat that was an illustration of a white hand pointing a gun at an emoji depicting a black child.

Rallings told the Commercial-Appeal: “I will also address today’s incident regarding a disturbing image that was supposedly posted by an MPD officer. At this point two MPD officers have been relieved of duty. The image is disgusting and will not be tolerated. We will conduct a thorough investigation and the individuals responsible will be held accountable. I just spoke to a group of young people at LeMoyne-Owen about decisions and we are responsible for the decisions we make and we are held to a higher standard.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Barack Obama was an awesome president — and Democrats shouldn’t forget that

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It's time for a defense of Barack Obama, the best American president of the last 50 years.

Part of that is because the competition hasn't exactly been fierce, but we'll get to that in a moment. First it is worth reflecting on how Obama became something of a goat during the last round of Democratic debates in Detroit. As the Rev. Al Sharpton said afterward, "This whole suicide mission of going after Barack Obama smells like desperation, and I think it certainly shows that some of them are just not ready for where they are."

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2020 Election

Morning Joe uses Fox News report to ridicule Trump’s business skills in coming trade deal with China

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During a discussion on bad economic reports indicating that the U.S. may be heading for a recession, "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough first mocked President Donald Trump's business acumen before predicting that he will cobble together a bad deal with China in hopes of slowing down the economic slide before the 2020 election.

Using a report he heard on Fox News, which predicted that same scenario, the MSNBC host noted that China knows they have the president over a barrel.

"I actually heard this on Fox News last week. somebody expressing real concern that the Chinese already know that, for Donald Trump, the only sort of economic trick he has left in his bag is to come to a resolution on the trade war with China to get the economy going," Scarborough recalled. "Well, if we all know that, then the Chinese leaders know that. Xi [Jinping] knows that."

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Trump’s ignorance has touched off a new crisis in Kashmir

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South Asia is again in crisis and could be on the brink of war. For the second time in six months, the world is on tenterhooks, waiting to see what turn events will take. Because the two antagonists are armed with nuclear weapons, the possibility of a confrontation is taken seriously. And as has happened before, Kashmir is at the center of the dispute that has kept India and Pakistan at loggerheads for over 70 years.

The simmering cauldron came to a boil about 10 days ago, when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, flush after a landslide electoral victory, revoked Article 370 of the Indian constitution, which established special status of the disputed territory. As expected, public reaction has been strong. In a bid to control the situation, the government has imposed a curfew and a clampdown on communications, cutting off the Kashmiris from the outside world.

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