NEW YORK — A Black Brooklyn teenager, after marching in a drumline to celebrate the debut of Juneteenth as a national holiday, viewed the festivities as a move in the right direction. “It’s a good step, a good step for getting justice for black people,” said Emmanuel Georges, 15, after the celebratory Saturday morning event in Grand Army Plaza. “It was good vibes, these young black kids, young black youth doing their things.” A six-foot statue of George Floyd was unveiled to cheers in Flatbush and marchers crossed the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan’s Black Lives Matter Plaza as New Yorkers mar...
‘Actions, not words’: LGBTQ activists still skeptical after Liz Cheney admits ‘I was wrong’ on same-sex marriage
U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) admitted she was wrong when, in 2013, she very publicly came out against same-sex marriage despite her sister being a lesbian who is married to a woman and raising two children together. But some in the LGBTQ community, along with activists and allies, are still skeptical, pointing to her record on related issues.
"I was wrong. I was wrong," Cheney told "60 Minutes" in an interview that aired Sunday evening, but she also continued to insist marriage equality is a "very personal issue," while it is actually a civil rights issue. She called it "very personal for my family," saying, "I believe that my dad was right. And my sister and I have had that conversation."
“I was wrong. I was wrong." says Rep Liz Cheney about condemning same-sex marriage in 2013, a position that caused a split with her sister Mary, who is married to a woman. Rep Cheney says the sisters are now reconciled. “I love my sister very much." https://t.co/EwRrkWDcT8 pic.twitter.com/KEdlqibZoJ
— 60 Minutes (@60Minutes) September 26, 2021
But her sister, Mary Cheney, made clear marriage wasn't a "personal issue" eight years ago. It's about civil rights.
“Liz — this isn't just an issue on which we disagree — you're just wrong — and on the wrong side of history," Mary Cheney wrote on Facebook.
On Sunday Congresswoman Cheney, who has voted against the LGBTQ Equality Act and against reauthorizing the Violence Against Woman Act (VAWA), said of LGBTQ equality, "this is an issue that we have to recognize, you know, as human beings that we need to work against discrimination of all kinds in our country, in our state. We were at an event, a few nights ago and there was a young woman who said she doesn't feel safe, sometimes, because she's transgender, and nobody should feel unsafe. Freedom means freedom for everybody."
While some see that as a marvelous transformation – Cheney was once also he founder and the head of an anti-Islam group, LGBTQ activists and allies expressed skepticism, or at least the need for more proof than just words.
Liz Cheney is an ambitious opportunist who threw her lesbian sister under the bus because she thought it would play well with Wyoming bigots.
She knew she was wrong then, but didn't care. I know it's popular to praise her now for not being crazy, but she is not a nice person. https://t.co/4ZmykHzKf6 — Mrs. Betty Bowers (@BettyBowers) September 27, 2021
I can't wait till I never have to listen to Liz Cheney again.Her saying she was wrong on same-sex marriage and saying that "no one [gay or trans] should feel unsafe" doesn't explain why she voted against the #EqualityAct TWICE. She's smart. She knows better. @60Minutes
— Victoria Brownworth (@VABVOX) September 26, 2021
Congratulations to Liz Cheney to catching up to uh most people? https://t.co/whG7BPVWAy
— Jane Coaston (@janecoaston) September 27, 2021
I will trust Liz Cheney's statement on trans rights on "60 Minutes" when she supports the Equality Act in its current form. Because just a few months ago, she voted against it. Why? Because it fully supports trans rights.
Actions, not words, @Liz_Cheney. — Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) September 27, 2021
Does this mean Liz Cheney will support the Equality Act?
Probably not, and she'll offer transphobic reasoning because we're not quite at the point where lawmakers like Liz Cheney take the right positions on trans rights until they've been shamed for many years. — Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) September 27, 2021
Liz Cheney is 6 months younger than me, so she came of age when I did during the AIDS Crisis, and like the child of any wealthy Republican politician, she ignored it.
Her sister came out, she married her partner of 29 years, but Liz waited until 2021 to support marriage equality pic.twitter.com/ADT0IUusRo — Geoffrey (@TheGeoffey) September 27, 2021
Great. So is she going to cosponsor and vote for the Equality Act then? She voted against it just this year. #lizcheney https://t.co/qTsfCyBnRb
— Konrad Juengling (@PDX_er) September 27, 2021
Trump officials were 'manipulating the intelligence' on white supremacy — and it made Jan 6 worse: DHS whistleblower
On CNN Monday, Homeland Security whistleblower Brian Murphy — a self-described conservative Republican and Trump voter who served as deputy undersecretary of the DHS intelligence office — opened up about how Trump administration DHS officials pressed him to manipulate intelligence about issues like white supremacy, and how it contributed to the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
"You said you were told to lie about multiple topics," said anchor Brianna Keilar. "Which topics?"
"So it was really anything that made the president look bad," said Murphy. "From the moment I arrived, three main topics that would draw the ire of the administration, anything to do with white supremacy, Russian disinformation, and the southwest border."
"Did officials confront the fact that ignoring these things could be problematic?" asked Keilar.
"I think it was more than ignoring them," said Murphy. "It was to manipulate the intelligence to fit that political narrative. They did not only not want things to come out, but shape it in a way that would support the president's objectives."
"Who basically said, we need to change the narrative, and did they actually use words like 'change the narrative'?" said Keilar.
"So I was told by virtually all the senior departmental officials, Chad Wolf, Ken Cuccinelli and many others, 'I'm ordering you to change the outcome of these products,' the intelligence products we would do, and I told them many times that I would not do that and if they kept the pressure up, I would go to Congress or use the whistleblower path to make sure it was addressed," said Murphy.
"Ken Cuccinelli demanded you modify the Homeland Security threat assessment," said Keilar.
"We completed the threat assessment in March of 2020," said Murphy. "It doesn't go out for months. The reason for that is Ken Cuccinelli and Chad Wolf and others consistently wanted several areas changed. One was on white supremacy, and the other was the Russia disinformation."
"Did they say why that made President Trump look bad?" said Keilar.
"Because of the president's statement in Charlottesville and more, as the spring and summer of 2020 went along, as it related to the murder of George Floyd and other things in that time era, it would make the president look bad," said Murphy. "Those were his exact words."
"White supremacy antigovernment extremism, we saw some of the fruits of that January 6th during the insurrection," said Keilar. "Do you think this denialism affected preparedness for January 6th?"
"Absolutely," said Murphy.
DHS whistleblower Brian Murphy says Trump admin was "manipulating the data" on white supremacy www.youtube.com
A Capitol rioter is seeking to avoid jail time — arguing in a motion filed Sunday that he "did not contemplate defecating on anyone's desk."
The Department of Justice is requesting a four-month jail term for Derek Jancart, who has pleaded guilty and is set to become the first military veteran sentenced in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection on Wednesday.
Jancart's attorney — A. Eduardo Balarezo — is instead asking for a sentence of 24 months of probation.
"Mr. Jancart's conduct is undisputed," Balarezo wrote in the defense's sentencing memo Sunday. "He did not engage in any violence; did not break anything; did not confront or fight with police. He did not enter any offices; did not enter the House or Senate floor; he did not take any 'souvenirs;' did not contemplate defecating on anyone's desk; did not yell that 'we have the police surrounded!'; did not have a pickaxe with him; did not yell 'traitors gonna hang!'; did not yell 'go, go, go!' when police lines were breached. He also was not affiliated with any organized or extremist group. He did mill about the Capitol building taking pictures and left when told to do so."
Balarezo was responding to prosecutors' sentencing memo, in which they said Jancart's co-defendant, Erik Rau, "admitted to hearing rioters in the Speaker's conference room discussing breaking into glass cabinets and taking everything in it and hearing a rioter screaming to 'sh*t on her desk.'"
"(Jancart and Rau) walked past the shattered glass and penetrated the U.S. Capitol until they arrived at Speaker Pelosi's conference room where Rau overheard another rioter shouting to 'sh*t on her desk,'" the DOJ memo states. "They were undeterred by other rioters shouting, 'sh*t on her desk' and instead continued even further into the U.S. Capitol until they encountered police officers who specifically told them to leave and, based on video footage, physically placed a hand on Erik Rau in order to escort him out of the building."
Prosecutors also said they consider Jancart's military service to be an aggravating factor in the case.
"While Jancart's military service is laudable, it renders his conduct on January 6 all the more egregious," they wrote. "As a former military member, Jancart was well aware that taxpayer status does not bestow upon a person the right to enter restricted government buildings. His voluntary decision to storm a guarded government building is nothing short of shocking in light of his former military service and training."
Politico reported last week that prosecutors' sentencing memo in the case is significant given that Jancart is one of "dozens of military veterans and retired service members, current and retired police officers, and even a few security-clearance holders" charged in the insurrection.
"In the case of Jancart and Rau ... prosecutors say they came to Washington prepared for potential violence — Jancart brought a gas mask and Rau brought kevlar-lined gloves — and were among the first to breach the building, emboldening others to follow suit," Politico reported. "They delved deeper into the building, stepping past broken glass, and ignoring alarms and tear gas. In addition, after the riot, the pair celebrated their actions on social media. Jancart defended his actions when interviewed by law enforcement, suggesting that his status as a taxpayer gave him the right to enter the building."
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