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Lindsey Graham Says There’s ‘No’ Systemic Racism In U.S., Citing Kamala Harris As VP

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Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Sunday said systemic racism doesn’t exist in the United States, pointing to the elections of former President Barack Obama and Vice President Kamala Harris to back up his claim.

During Graham’s appearance on “Fox News Sunday,” host Chris Wallace played a clip of President Joe Biden stating Tuesday that the country needs to confront systemic racism “head on” after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of murdering George Floyd.

“Is there systemic racism in this country in policing and in other institutions?” Wallace asked Graham.

“No, not in my opinion,” Graham said. “We just elected a two-term African American president. The vice president is of African-American-Indian descent. So our systems are not racist. America is not a racist country. Within every society, you have bad actors.”

Graham, who helped perpetuate President Donald Trump’s “big lie” that Biden and Harris stole the election, instead bashed Biden for stating that systemic racism is a problem in the United States, a country built by enslaved people.

“This attack on police and policing ― reform the police, yes. Call them all racist, no,” Graham said. “America is a work in progress but [sic] best place on the planet. And Joe Biden spends a lot of time running the place down. I wish you would stop it.”

The elections of Obama and Harris ― the country’s first Black president and first Black vice president, respectively ― do not negate the racism entrenched in the country’s institutions and laws, which is exemplified in myriad ways, including the disproportionate rate at which police kill Black men; the income disparity between Black families and white families; and the high number of people of color killed by COVID-19.

In a subsequent interview on Sunday, Rep. Karen Bass (D-Calif.), the former chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, pushed back on Graham’s claim.

“My response is, at some point in our country’s history, we have got to figure out a way to talk about race where we can talk about it objectively and people don’t feel individual guilt,” Bass said.

“You can look at each of our institutions,” she added. “Why is there such massive inequality when it comes to education, when it comes to health care? Why does that exist? And so we have to figure out a way to talk about it. Right now, to say it doesn’t exist does not help anyone.”

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Culled from the HuffPost and has been updated.  By Hayley Miller ·(Senior reporter)

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Africa

Deadly bombing at restaurant packed for Christmas in Congo

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Officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo say at least six people have died in a suicide bomb attack on a crowded restaurant in the eastern city of Beni.

Police prevented the bomber from entering the building, but he blew himself up at the entrance killing himself and five other people.

Another 13 people were injured.

The officials blamed Saturday’s attack on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a militant group said to be linked to the so-called Islamic State (IS).

So far no group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

More than 30 people were celebrating Christmas at the In Box restaurant when the bomb went off, two witnesses told AFP news agency.

Children and local officials were reportedly in the restaurant at the time.

“I was sitting there,” local radio presenter Nicolas Ekila told AFP. “There was a motorbike parked there. Suddenly the motorbike took off, then there was a deafening noise.”

After the explosion the military officer responsible for the state of emergency in the country’s east told residents to return home for their own safety.

There have been frequent clashes in Beni between the army and Islamists in recent weeks.

In November, Congolese and Ugandan forces began a joint operation against the ADF in an attempt to end a series of brutal attacks.

Authorities in Uganda say the group is behind a series of recent attacks in the country, including in the capital Kampala.

Map
Map

The militant group was formed in the 1990s by Ugandans disgruntled with the government’s treatment of Muslims, but it was routed from western Uganda and its remnants fled across the border to DR Congo.

It established itself in the eastern DR Congo and has been blamed for thousands of civilian killings there over the past decade, including in attacks on Christians.

In March the US put the ADF on its list of terror groups linked to IS. For its part, IS says the ADF is an affiliate.

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South Africa’s Tutu – anti-apartheid hero dies at 90

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Desmond Tutu, South Africa’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning activist for racial justice and LGBT rights and retired Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town, has died, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced Sunday. He was 90.

An uncompromising foe of apartheid — South Africa’s brutal regime of oppression against the Black majority — Tutu worked tirelessly, though non-violently, for its downfall.

The buoyant, blunt-spoken clergyman used his pulpit as the first Black bishop of Johannesburg and later Archbishop of Cape Town as well as frequent public demonstrations to galvanize public opinion against racial inequity both at home and globally.

Tutu’s death on Sunday “is another chapter of bereavement in our nation’s farewell to a generation of outstanding South Africans who have bequeathed us a liberated South Africa,” Ramaphosa said in a statement.

“From the pavements of resistance in South Africa to the pulpits of the world’s great cathedrals and places of worship, and the prestigious setting of the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony, the Arch distinguished himself as a non-sectarian, inclusive champion of universal human rights.”

Tutu had been hospitalized several times since 2015, after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1997. In recent years he and his wife, Leah, lived in a retirement community outside Cape Town.

Throughout the 1980s — when South Africa was gripped by anti-apartheid violence and a state of emergency giving police and the military sweeping powers — Tutu was one of the most prominent Blacks able to speak out against abuses.

A lively wit lightened Tutu’s hard-hitting messages and warmed otherwise grim protests, funerals and marches. Short, plucky, tenacious, he was a formidable force, and apartheid leaders learned not to discount his canny talent for quoting apt scriptures to harness righteous support for change.

The Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 highlighted his stature as one of the world’s most effective champions for human rights, a responsibility he took seriously for the rest of his life.

With the end of apartheid and South Africa’s first democratic elections in 1994, Tutu celebrated the country’s multi-racial society, calling it a “rainbow nation,” a phrase that captured the heady optimism of the moment.

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Unashamed Anti-vaxxer, Marjorie Taylor Greene owns stock in 3 major vaccine makers

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Marjorie Taylor Greene, who has boasted about being unvaccinated, owns stock in 3 major vaccine makers

  • Marjorie Taylor Greene owns stock in three major vaccine makers, financial-disclosure filings show.
  • Greene holds AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson stock, each worth between $1,000 and $15,000.
  • Greene has boasted about being unvaccinated and slammed “vaccine Nazis” last month.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who has boasted about being unvaccinated against COVID-19, owns stock in three major vaccine makers, financial-disclosure filings analyzed by Insider show.

Greene holds stock in AstraZeneca, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson, each worth between $1,000 and $15,000, according to an August 13, 2020, filing from Greene with the clerk of the House of Representatives.

The discovery was made as part of Insider’s Conflicted Congress project, which revealed that multiple US lawmakers held stock in vaccine makers as the pandemic raged in 2020.

The project found that at least 13 senators and 35 US representatives held shares in Johnson & Johnson, 11 senators and 34 representatives held shares in Pfizer, and two representatives or their spouses held shares of Moderna.

In September, Greene told Insider: “I have an independent investment advisor that has full discretionary authority on my accounts. I do not direct any trades.”

Despite her financial interest in vaccine stocks, Greene says she isn’t vaccinated and has decried those trying to make her get the shot.

In an episode of Steve Bannon’s “War Room” podcast released November 2, Greene said “vaccine Nazis” were “ruining our country.”

The issue of Greene’s vaccine assets has been seized on by Jennifer Strahan, who is running against her for Congress in Georgia’s 14th district.

Last week Strahan held a Twitter poll in which she asked, “Which of the following COVID vaccine manufacturers does @mtgreenee currently own stock in?”

She listed AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, or “all of the above” as choices.

“For those of you wondering, the correct answer is D! Our current representative rails against the vaccine, but owns stock in 3 of the 4 major vaccine manufacturers,” Strahan wrote in a follow-up tweet.

Speaking at Turning Point USA’s “AmericaFest” conference on Sunday, Greene reiterated her disdain for vaccines.

“I’m not vaccinated, and they’re going to have a hell of a time if they want to hold me down and give me a vaccine,” she said.

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