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Civil rights groups ask FBI and DHS to reveal how they define ‘black identity extremists’

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Dozens of civil rights groups have demanded the full release of federal reports documenting so-called “black identity extremists.”

A redacted version of the paper was leaked to the media on Aug. 3, 2017 — just days before a violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia — that showed FBI officials believed those black extremists would likely target law enforcement, reported TruthDig.

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Other documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act revealed another document, known as the “Race Paper,” was circulated within the Department of Homeland Security, which later released the document in fully redacted form.

The American Civil Liberties Union, the Center for Media Justice and 40 other organizations have called for the release of an unredacted version of the DHS paper, which they said raised concerns about racial profiling and other potential abuses of constitutional rights.

“We believe that the ‘Race Paper’ may improperly suggest that constitutionally-protected Black political speech should be considered an indicator of criminal conduct or a national security threat,” the letter reads.

The groups warned DHS secretary Kirstjen Nielsen the paper has “serious implications on the constitutional rights and safety of Black and Brown people in the United States, and, in particular, protesters and activists of color.”

At least one black activist has been jailed as a “black identity extremist,” although Dallas-based Rakem Balogun was released and his firearms charges dropped in early May after he spent five months in jail.

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“The FBI was pretty much surveilling me for over two and a half years as a domestic terrorist,” Balogun told Democracy Now. “The judge denied me bond based off of me using my First Amendment right to criticize police officers on Facebook.”


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Armed security forces in DC are refusing to identify their agencies — sparking condemnation

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On Tuesday, Mother Jones national security reporter Dan Friedman posted an image of heavily-armed federal officials overseeing protests in D.C. — and noted that they refused to identify their agency when asked.

Asked who they’re with, these guys say only that they’re with “The Department of Justice.” pic.twitter.com/ciVDtP8ndk

— Dan Friedman (@dfriedman33) June 2, 2020

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Internet scorns Trump for saying D.C. was the ‘safest place on earth last night’: ‘Bunker Boy says what?’

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On Tuesday, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to proudly proclaim he had succeeded in restoring order to Washington, D.C. last night.

Washington, D.C., was the safest place on earth last night!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 2, 2020

Commenters on social media did not see it the same way.

Did your hear that George W. Bush’s former alum have launched a Super PAC to elect Joe Biden?

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Trump campaign provokes outrage with demand that media stop saying protesters were tear gassed

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On Tuesday, the Trump campaign issued a statement demanding that the media "correct or retract" the reports that peaceful protesters were tear gassed in front of the White House — citing claims from the U.S. Park Police that the substance used to forcibly disperse the crowd was not tear gas.

This demand did not go over well on social media, with commenters siding with journalists over the official reports — and others asking what the point is for the White House to dispute the type of substance they sprayed at peaceful protesters.

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