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Historian faces shocking death threat — just for comparing Donald Trump to Andrew Johnson

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On Friday this stark tweet drew gasps from across Twitter:

The tweet was written by Manisha Sinha, a professor of history at the University of Connecticut. Messages of support poured in immediately from Jelani Cobb, Annette Gordon-Reed, Kevin Kruse and scores of others.

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The ordeal began shortly after she wrote an op ed published by CNN with the headline, “What happened the last time a President chose America’s enemies over its friends.”  In the article Sinha compared Donald Trump to Andrew Johnson.

Trolls immediately attacked Sinha. But she took the broadsides in stride.  This was the cost of doing business on the Internet, she acknowledged, as noted in this tweet:

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But within hours the discussion had turned potentially violent.

The article had been published on Friday at 6:37 in the morning.  At 10:17 went out the tweet indicating she’d received death threats from someone who knew where she lived.  In her tweet she asked followers to alert campus police.

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Sinha, the author of a new acclaimed study of abolitionism, The Slave’s Cause:  A History of Abolition, published this past February by Yale University Press, was unnerved.  In a Facebook post composed the next day she related what had happened: “[J]ust after 9 am I received a series of threatening phone calls, vile, racist, and misogynistic. I thought I would just ignore them until the last one read out my home address and said they have it on GPS and would be coming to kill me.  I called 911.”   She explained that she was so “freaked out” that when FedEx showed up to deliver a package she called the police.  They arrived within minutes.

The authorities’ investigation quickly identified the culprit who’d made the GPS death threat call.  It was from someone in Texas.  He can now be prosecuted in Massachusetts.  But Sinha, writing a little more than 24 hours after the threats had been made, remained frightened:  “I want to thank everyone who worked so fast to track the phone calls but I have to say my peace of mind is gone.”

She won’t stop speaking out, she said.  But she also declined an invitation to go on Tucker Carlson’s show on Fox News for fear of riling up his audience.

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She ended her Facebook post on an alarming note.  “As an immigrant, naturalized citizen, I actually do love living in the United States despite the fact that I study the history of slavery and now of racial terror after the Civil War. I feel invested in the project of American democracy otherwise I would not write. That we now again live in an age where violent intimidation is becoming the norm is horrifying.”

Note: HNN published an interview with Sinha a few months ago.  You can read it here.

 

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By Rick Shenkman, the editor of the History News Network.

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… 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 outlets, 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.

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2020 Election

Ex-Tea Party lawmaker perfectly nails why Trump is going down in 2020

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On Saturday, former Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) tweeted the simple reason he believes President Donald Trump will lose his bid for re-election in 2020:

Trump will lose in 2020 because the vast majority of America is tired of him. Tired of his bullshit. Tired of his drama. Just plain tired of him.

— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) August 17, 2019

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Illinois woman out of a job after calling for a return to slavery in this incredibly racist video

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According to a report from the Riverfront Times, an Illinois woman seen in a video using ugly racial slurs and calling for a return to slavery is now out of a job over her comments.

The reports states that the two women seen in the video, identified as Macy Castleman and Jayde Landers, claim it was recorded it three years ago but it just came to light again after Gabbi Goldsborough posted it to Facebook with the warning: "I love how people sit around & act like racism isn’t still a thing. macy castleman and jayde landers u have a lot of explaining to do."

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Epstein hired multiple lawyers to meet with him to avoid being kept in cell before his death: report

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On Saturday, The New York Times published an account of the final days of high-powered wealth manager Jeffrey Epstein, who was found dead of apparent suicide in New York's Metropolitan Correctional Center while facing trial for child sex trafficking.

One of the key new revelations from the report is that Epstein despised his cell, which was "cramped, dank and infested with vermin" — so he used his vast wealth to exploit a legal loophole in the prison system that would let him spend most of his time outside of it: hire a bunch of lawyers to come and talk to him for hours and hours so he could get a private room to himself.

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