Friday, November 10, 2023

“Text-Book Case of Genocide”: Top U.N. Official Craig Mokhiber Resigns, Denounces Israeli Assault on Gaza

Palestinian Groups Ask ICC to Arrest Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu for War Crimes & Genocide in Gaza

“Unspeakable”: Dr. Fady Joudah Grieves 50+ Family Members Killed in Gaza & Slams U.S. Media Coverage

“From the River to the Sea”: Omer Bartov on Contested Slogan & Why Two-State Solution Is Not Viable

“Clear Intention of Ethnic Cleansing”: Israeli Holocaust Scholar Omer Bartov Warns of Genocide in Gaza

“I Will Not Be Silenced”: Rep. Rashida Tlaib Calls for Gaza Ceasefire as House Votes to Censure Her

Holocaust Survivor Condemns Israel for Attacks on Israel


Thursday, October 19, 2023

Crimes Against Humanity in Palestine


I hope Netanyahu is not alone in International Court. I hope President Biden is right there with him, on trial.

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

POWERLANDS FILM

Monday, October 2, 2023

INSTITUTE TO END MASS INCARCERATION

 


https://endmassincarceration.org/people/jocelyn-simonson/

Survived & Punished: Meet Tracy McCarter, a Nurse Jailed, Then Cleared, for Stabbing Abusive Husband



Tracy McCarter was incarcerated after killing her partner who attacked her at her home. She separated from him following a pattern of violence. He came to her home and attacked her while trying to get money. She stabbed him in self defense and was incarcerated for seven months at Rickers Island and charged with murder. 

She was finally released after a massive public movement for her freedom ensued. 

This story highlights the plight of Black women who kill White Men, in self-defense 




THE REAL REASON DONALD TRUMP WANTS GEN. MILLEY KILLED (SALON SEP 2023)

 

The real reason why Donald Trump wants Gen. Milley to be killed

By Chauncey DeVega

https://img.particlenews.com/image.php?url=1u0RR4_0ojgG7bg00

Donald Trump is continuing to threaten the lives of his "enemies" and all others who oppose him. Trump has been doing this publicly and without contrition, pause or any apparent fear of repercussions or negative consequences. His behavior is a function of his depraved character, damaged personality, and diseased mind.

Despite how too many among the news media and political class, even after seven years of experience to the contrary, would like to believe, Trump is not going to pivot. Moreover, there are no "responsible" senior members of today's Republican Party who are going to place country over party to finally stop Trump and his neofascist MAGA movement.

Trump's threats of violence and acts of intimidation are so great that the Department of Justice is seeking a gag order in an attempt to protect the safety of the jurors, witnesses, and members of law enforcement who will be involved in the ex-president's upcoming criminal trials, as Salon's Areeba Shah reports:

Threats against law enforcement, judges and elected officials are on the rise as Donald Trump's prosecutions gain momentum, The New York Times reported on Monday.

FBI agents have raised alarms about harassment and threats targeting their families. These concerns have amplified amid complaints by Trump supporters and many Republicans that the Justice Department has been "weaponized" — a narrative the former president has extensively promoted on social media.

"Trump's pattern of lashing out at anyone who opposes him has been dangerously emulated by his supporters," V. James DeSimone, a California civil rights attorney, told Salon. "Now that he is facing four indictments, his most dangerous supporters view law enforcement and our judicial system as the enemy. So the risk is there for increased violence."

The FBI has witnessed a substantial surge in threats against its personnel and facilities following the August 2022 search of Mar-a-Lago Trump's Florida residence and private club, according to the Times. This led the agency to establish a dedicated unit to address these threats.

One federal official told the Times that threats have increased by more than 300 percent since then, partly because FBI agents' identities and personal information has been spread on social media by Trump supporters.

Who is the target of Trump's latest threats of murderous violence? Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Mark Milley.

Here is what Trump said in a Friday post on his Truth Social disinformation propaganda website:

Mark Milley, who led perhaps the most embarrassing moment in American history with his grossly incompetent implementation of the withdrawal from Afghanistan, costing many lives, leaving behind hundreds of American citizens, and handing over BILLIONS of dollars of the finest military equipment ever made, will be leaving the military next week.

This will be a time for all citizens of the USA to celebrate!" he continued. "This guy turned out to be a Woke train wreck who, if the Fake News reporting is correct, was actually dealing with China to give them a heads up on the thinking of the President of the United States. This is an act so egregious that, in times gone by, the punishment would have been DEATH!

Of course, Trump is lying about these events. So what is the real reason why Donald Trump wants Gen. Milley to be killed?

Trump is enraged that Gen. Milley attempted to stop his coup and other attacks on democracy and civil society. Milley, as a responsible military officer, places loyalty to the Constitution and democracy and the American people over personal loyalty to the person who happens to occupy the White House. This was antithetical to Trump's attempts, and now future plans, to be America's first dictator.

The most immediate reason why Donald Trump is now threatening Gen. Milley's life is in response to a recent Atlantic profile by Jeffrey Goldberg, which confirms, again, that the ex-president is an enemy of democracy and a neofascist, who possesses deep contempt for America's soldiers.

Others have speculated that Gen. Milley may be a witness against the ex-president in the upcoming classified documents trial, which may also explain the disgraced president's murderous rage towards him.

Army Captain Luis Avila was grievously wounded during his five combat tours in Afghanistan. Gen. Milley invited Captain Avila to sing at an Armed Forces Welcome Ceremony that took place in September 2019. Trump reportedly told Gen. Milley, "Why do you bring people like that here? No one wants to see that, the wounded." Trump reportedly also told Gen. Milley to never let Captain Avila make an official public appearance again. As summarized by Goldberg in his Atlantic profile, "Trump's attitude toward the uniformed services seemed superficial, callous, and, at the deepest human level, repugnant."

Trump's disdain towards Captain Avila, is also representative of a larger pattern of hostility towards disabled people by the ex-president, as Eric Garcia explains at MSNBC:

But there's enough evidence of Trump deriding military heroes and deriding people who are disabled to believe he has little regard for people who are disabled military heroes. For example, in what counts as one of the most deplorable displays by a candidate for U.S. president, in 2015 Trump mocked Pulitzer-Prize winning New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski, who has arthrogryposis, a congenital joint condition that limits movement in his arms.

During that same presidential campaign, Trump said the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who became disabled while a prisoner of war in Vietnam, was "not a war hero" because "he was captured." And The Wall Street Journal reported in 2019, before Trump's visit Japan that year, that a U.S. Indo-Pacific Command official sent U.S. Navy and Air Force officials an email including the directive that while Trump was there, the "USS John McCain needs to be out of sight."

Trump denied having made a request that the ship be kept out of sight but described whoever made the request as "well meaning" "because they thought I didn't like" McCain.

In one of the most deplorable displays by a candidate for president, Trump mocked reporter Serge Kovaleski, who has arthrogryposis, a congenital joint condition that limits movement in his arms.

Like other white supremacists, eugenicists, and racial authoritarians, Trump is very proud of his "good genes", believes that human beings can be bred like horses, and is contemptuous towards for those he views as being somehow inferior to his "superior" racial stock.

In a post on Twitter/X, political analyst and author David Rothkopf, correctly described Trump's recent death threats against Gen. Milley in the following way:

Trump this weekend indicated military leaders who opposed his policies should be put to death and media that presented views he did not like are traitors and will be prosecuted. He is a monster, an aspiring dictator, the greatest threat America faces.

At the Atlantic, political scientist Brian Klaas, who is an expert on authoritarianism, sounded this alarm about Trump's most recent death threats and how they have been responded to by the news media and public:

Trump's rhetoric is dangerous, not just because it is the exact sort that incites violence against public officials but also because it shows just how numb the country has grown toward threats more typical of broken, authoritarian regimes. The United States is not just careening toward a significant risk of political violence around the 2024 presidential election. It's also mostly oblivious to where it's headed…

Bombarded by a constant stream of deranged authoritarian extremism from a man who might soon return to the presidency, we've lost all sense of scale and perspective. But neither the American press nor the public can afford to be lulled. The man who, as president, incited a violent attack on the U.S. Capitol in order to overturn an election is again openly fomenting political violence while explicitly endorsing authoritarian strategies should he return to power. That is the story of the 2024 election. Everything else is just window dressing.

Trump's death threats against Gen. Milley are being echoed by other Republicans in Congress.

Focusing on the specific dangers embodied by Donald Trump in his role as leader of the neofascist MAGA movement, ex-president, coup plotter, and Republican frontrunner in the 2024 Election (who is now leading President Biden in at least one national poll) is critical if America's democracy is to survive. Trump must be defeated both at the polls and in court. However, Trump's pattern of threats and violence against his "enemies" is a problem that is much larger than any one person or leader or party. Trumpism and American neofascism and their violence

The United States is the richest country on the planet, but experts estimate that hundreds of thousands of people die here each year from poverty. These are largely preventable deaths and a type of choice by the country's elites and policy makers. More than 1 million Americans have died from the coronavirus. President Trump and his regime and other Republican Party leaders engaged in an act of democide through their willful negligence and decisions to make "the economy" more important than saving lives during the pandemic.

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world.

The United States is structured by racism, white supremacy, sexism, classism, and other forms of social inequality. As social scientists and other experts have repeatedly demonstrated, social inequality is a type of structural and institutional violence.

The United States – especially Republicans and the "conservative" movement – refuse to enact the necessary policies to slow down global climate disaster. To that point, in a much-discussed 2017 interview on Democracy Now!, Noam Chomsky powerfully explained how today's Republican Party and "conservative" movement are antihuman and an enemy of human civilization:

[H]as there ever been an organization in human history that is dedicated, with such commitment, to the destruction of organized human life on Earth? Not that I'm aware of. Is the Republican organization—I hesitate to call it a party—committed to that? Overwhelmingly. There isn't even any question about it.

In an excellent new essay at Truthout, social theorist and cultural critic Henry Giroux locates Trump's threats of violence and destruction within America's larger culture of cruelty, violence, and neofascism.

Giroux's essay merits being quoted at length:

The lies embraced by demagogues such as Trump do more than distort meaning, turn truth to ashes and spread misinformation. As Ariel Dorfman observes, they also "exhibit a toxic mix of ignorance and mendacity," while legitimizing and reproducing a vocabulary and culture that revels in unrestricted power, cruelty, terror and "homicidal extremes." This is a language through which power is enacted; a language in which agency is made manifest "as an act with [often deadly] consequences." This is a rhetoric that emerges from living corpses whose mouths are filled with blood.

Trump's lies cannot be separated from the language of violence and its ongoing attempts to instill fear, promote threats against alleged opponents and inspire violence from his MAGA followers. His lies are inseparable from the creation of a language that promotes a lethal formative culture that wallows in the blood of those viewed as disposable, and that produces deranged anger and unchecked despair. Trump's use of an inflammatory violent rhetoric to obtain political power feeds the GOP call for civil war and accelerates the arming of political extremists such as the Proud Boys, the Patriot movement and a heavily militarized police force.

Giroux continues:

Trump's embrace of lies and violence have produced an unrelenting series of shocks to the body politic and its democratic ideals. Violence that was once considered inconceivable and relegated to the margins of society now passes for normal. As Trump's violent rhetoric accelerates, actual acts of violence "have become a steady reality of American life, affecting school board officials, election workers, flight attendants, librarians and even members of Congress, often with few headlines and little reaction from politicians."..

In Trump's worldview, the opposition is not to be debated, it is to be destroyed, eliminated. This friend/enemy distinction reinforces the notion that a pledge of loyalty to Trump is comparable to becoming part of a militarized army engaged in war. In this discourse, violence is equated with power, and brutality becomes a measure of loyalty. Reason is now replaced with loyalty, and loyalty becomes the medium to "deploy sadism by bullying and humiliating others."

National security experts have concluded that there are more than ten million Trump MAGA people and other members of the Republican fascist party and right-wing who support using violence to remove President Biden and the Democrats from power. Of those many millions, there are perhaps only a "few" hundred thousand who are willing to actually engage in direct acts of violence.

For those Trumpists and other neofascists who are unwilling (or unable) to take up arms or otherwise participate in direct acts of political violence, Trump and his MAGA movement represents a type of idea and permission function.

Want a daily wrap-up of all the news and commentary Salon has to offer? Subscribe to our morning newsletter, Crash Course.

Trumpism is a way for them to engage in the fantasy and ideation of violence as a way of getting power and "getting even" with their "enemies", those Black and brown people, gays and lesbians, transgendered people, "liberals", "the left", "political correctness", "Black Lives Matter", "Woke", "Critical Race Theory", "illegal immigrants", criminals, "intellectuals", "socialists", "feminists", "Muslims", or whoever in their minds has somehow "oppressed" "real Americans" like them by not staying in their place as a second class citizens who are to be subservient and obedient to White "Christian" Americans.

Ideation and fantasy and wish fulfillment of committing acts of violence against "the enemy" are well-documented steps in a process through which political violence up to and including genocide and eliminationism is normalized.

In an email to me, Giroux warned about where Trump and the "conservative" movement's embrace of fascism and other forms of violence will almost inevitably lead the country.

Violence has a long legacy in the United States, but Trump has used the threat of violence with hurricane force against his proposed enemies, going so far recently to issue a death threat against a high-profile figure such as Gen. Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint chiefs of Staff. There is nothing shocking about this threat because Trump has accelerated both his lies and threats of violence for years. What is disturbing, if not dangerous, is how the mainstream press refuses to analyze such threats and Trump's addiction to violence as a central element of fascist and authoritarian politics. We know from the study of history that such threats led to executions, torture, imprisonment, and death camps—think of Pinochet, Pol Pot, Nazi Germany, Stalin's trials, Mussolini's fascist regime, among others. Yet the mainstream media simply reports the violence issued by Trump and his lackeys as mere description, uncivilized rhetoric, and undignified.  Silence on this issue is a form of complicity, and the mainstream press is further legitimating such violence through their tone-deaf reporting. There is more at stake here than a lack of journalistic responsibility, there is a refusal to imagine what the end of democracy, if not humanity might look like if this culture of lies and violence continues unabated and unaccountable.

The potential and reality of right-wing political violence in America as part of a plan to end multiracial pluralistic democracy is not some type of unknown unknown or mystery. The immediate question is, what to do about it?

As I and others have repeatedly implored, Democrats, liberals, progressives, Black and brown people, women, the LGBTQI community, and all others who believe in real democracy must vote and organize and resist like their lives and freedom literally depend upon it – because it does.

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

America Does Not Want Democracy in The Middle East

 Our government sends our fighting men and women to war in The Middle East to spread democracy...when...they do not want democracy there.



Tuesday, August 22, 2023

DemocracyNow Featuring George Chidi, Vijay Prashad - Fulton County Jail and BRICS

Inside the Fulton County Jail where Trump will surrender. 15 prisoners died last year, one, eaten by insects. Democrats are responsible for it’s operation. Meet George Chidi, the journalist who uncovered the secret meeting of fake Trump electors. Vijay Prashad on BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) and why global south cooperation is key to dismantling unjust world order.

Saturday, August 12, 2023

Beast of Jersey

States of Jersey police outside the Royal Court

The mask worn by Edward Paisnel during his horrific assaults that included children as victims 

The face of evil. Mug shot of Edward Paisnel

The picturesque beaches of Jersey 

Alphorn Le Gastelois after fleeing the island. Wrongly accused and persecuted.

A police officer ‘models’ The clothes and mask worn by the ‘Beast of Jersey’ during his attacks. He made sure that he had nail studded wristlets so that if a victim fought back, they would be injured.



             



 The picturesque island of Jersey sits in the bay of St. Malo, only 14 miles from the coast of Normandy.

It’s quaint streets and low crime rate attracts tourists as well as those wanting to start a new life.

However, during the 1950’s terror would grip the island. A predator lurked in the shadows.

In 1957 a nurse was waiting at a bus stop in Mont  a l’abbé. A man approached her, dressed in a long coat and a scarf hiding his identity.

He struck her on the head, tied a rope around her neck then dragged her into a nearby field. There he sexually assaulted her.

A second attack occurred when a 20 year old lady had just got off her bus. Using the same method, he dragged her into a field and again sexually assaulted her.

A man hunt was underway. The states of Jersey police dubbed him the ‘Beast of Jersey’. The attacks continued. 

He would also sneak into holes during the night and attack women and children. 

They all gave the same description. He wore a rubber mask, He had wristlets which were nail studded.

The Jersey police intent on finding this sick individual set their sights on an eccentric man by the name of Alphinse Le Gastelois. He was questioned and then released due to lack of evidence.

Despite the fact that there was nothing that pointed to this man being the ‘Beast’, hatred in the community grew, the cottage of Alphonse burnt to the ground due to arson.

He feared for his life and decided that the safes thing to do was to leave the island. He moved to Les Echreois. He was later dubbed ‘Kind of the Echreois’

After Alphonse left, the attacks continued. Residents were terrified and families worried that their home would be the next that would be entered.

On the 17th July, 1971, a Jersey resident by the name of Edward Paisnel was stopped by the police after Failing to stop at a red light and evading a police pursuit.

In the car that he had stolen earlier that night, the police discovered several pointed sticks as well as elements of his ‘Beast’ costume.

He was later arrested, charged and convicted of 13 counts of assault, rape and sodomy. He was sentenced to 30 years imprisonment.

After his prison sentence in the UK ended, Edward Paisnel returned to Jersey, however, due to the strength of bad feeling towards him, he soon left.

He moved to the Isle of Wight where he later died in 1994.


Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Senator Tuberville and Rep. Gosar Support White Supremacy and Neo Nazi Activities In Congress


We must launch a national campaign to get Tommy Tuberville out of office. The GOP Alabama congressman OPENLY SUPPORTS White Supremacy in the military and he sits on key Veteran's and Armed Services committees.

See the story here https://www.democracynow.org/2023/5/16/tommy_tuberville_white_nationalist_comments?jwsource=cl

We can boycott his top contributors. See them here: https://www.opensecrets.org/members-of-congress/tommy-tuberville/summary?cid=N00044434


See the story of Rep. Gosar he too supports White Supremacy. https://www.democracynow.org/2023/5/16/paul_gosar_groyper_wade_searle_fuentes

Gosar funding https://www.opensecrets.org/members-of-congress/paul-gosar/summary?cid=N00030771


Please share this story widely.

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Psychiatrists Have Taken 170 Years to Apologize for History of Racism


This is a radio show. Call in number 310-861-2349



The Racism of Former American Psychiatric Association President Jeffrey Lieberman, Chair of the Columbia University Department of Psychiatry, has caused him to resign. His tweet about Model Nyakim Gatwech has drawn international condemnation and demands of his resignation - https://www.cchrint.org/2022/02/25/psychiatrists-racist-tweet-about-model-nyakim-gatwech/





 
• Rev. Fred Shaw, Anti-Racism Task Force Leader, Joins Calls for APA President and Columbia University Psychiatrist Jeffrey Lieberman to Resign All Advisory and Executive Positions in Light of Blatant Racist Tweet.

• Lieberman has a controversial past, including being irrationally critical of anyone opposing his or psychiatry’s works—making accusations of the type that are now being similarly directed at him, but with merit.

• The Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons wrote to leaders at four institutions affiliated with Lieberman questioning if New York Presbyterian Hospital is safe for students and patients of color.

• Rev. Shaw states, “As an African American and human rights advocate, I am appalled that Ms. Gatwech was subject to this racial abuse,” Rev. Shaw calls for Lieberman’s resignation from all executive and advisory positions he holds internationally, including with pharmaceutical companies.


By CCHR International
Mental Health Industry Watchdog


February 25, 2022

 

Former American Psychiatric Association president Jeffrey Lieberman, Chair of the Columbia University Department of Psychiatry, has been suspended after issuing a racist post on his Twitter account about a dark-skinned model, Ms. Nyakim Gatwech.

 


He was subsequently removed from his position as psychiatrist-in-chief at Columbia University Irving Medical Center/New York-Presbyterian Hospital and forced to resigned from his role as executive director of the New York State Psychiatric Institute.[1] However, Rev. Frederick Shaw, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Inglewood South Bay branch and founder of the Task Force Against Racism and Modern-Day Eugenics, said Lieberman’s subsequent trite apology to Ms. Gatwech, was grossly inadequate for someone of his stature in psychiatry.

“Jeffrey Lieberman’s apology to the model, Ms. Nyakim Gatwech, was trite and grossly inadequate for someone of his stature in psychiatry. As an African American and human rights advocate, I am appalled that Ms. Gatwech was subject to this racial abuse.” – Rev. Frederick Shaw, founder of CCHR’s Task Force Against Racism and Modern-Day Eugenics

“As an African American and human rights advocate, I am appalled that Ms. Gatwech was subject to this racial abuse,” Rev. Shaw said.




He called for Lieberman’s resignation from all executive and advisory positions he holds internationally, including with pharmaceutical companies—from the U.S. to Spain.

Lieberman tweeted in response to a photo of Ms. Gatwech, an American model of South Sudanese descent, that her skin color was possibly a “freak of nature.”



In an email to his colleagues before he was suspended, Lieberman apologized for the tweet, describing it as “racist and sexist.” He added that he was “deeply ashamed” of his “prejudices and stereotypical assumptions.”[2]

 


But Rev Shaw said the apology was “public relations rhetoric. This is no light-weight psychiatrist, he’s the former head of the American Psychiatric Association, and has been a researcher for the National Institute of Mental Health and served on its National Advisory Mental Health Council; he also served on the advisory board of the Food and Drug Administration advisory committee for Neuropharmacologic and Psychopharmacologic Drugs and has been on the editorial boards of numerous journals. We shall approach all of them to have Dr. Lieberman be removed as an expert and denied future official affiliations.”[3]

 


The New York state Office of Mental Health, which operates the New York State Psychiatric Institute, asked Lieberman to resign as director, stating: “The Office of Mental Health took immediate action after learning of Dr. Lieberman’s offensive and inappropriate comments on social media. As of February 22, he is no longer affiliated with OMH or the State of New York,” said agency spokesperson Jessica Zahn.[4]

 

The government-funded position with the New York State Psychiatric Institute paid Lieberman almost $250,000 annually in 2020 and 2021, according to payroll records.[5] 

“To not understand how racist language like that is harmful when your profession is supposed to care for the mental health of people makes you unqualified to be a psychiatrist at all, let alone the chief of the top program.” – Dr. Elle Lett, a postdoctoral fellow in medicine at the University of Pennsylvania[6]

“This man held the sentiments that shaped the department. This is a reckoning for institutional change,” Lett told THE CITY. “I don’t trust him or the people he trained of being stewards of mental health to Black women.[7]

“Jeffrey Lieberman’s comment is not surprising given psychiatry’s long history of fueling racism and harming African Americans and minorities.” – Rev. Frederick Shaw

In April 2021, the APA issued a formal apology over what it called psychiatry’s “role in perpetrating structural racism” and “history of actions…that hurt Black, Indigenous, and People of Color” (BIPOC).[8] It took them over 170 years to apologize, which the Task Force rejected.  APA’s response to Lieberman’s comment was unremarkable and self-serving. Its Board of Trustees issued a statement, saying it “reiterates its position that both racism and sexism harm the APA as an organization, the field of psychiatry, and the people and communities we serve. Past APA presidents do not speak for, or on behalf of, the APA.”[9]



Rev. Shaw says the APA needs to take a much stronger stand—removing Lieberman’s past presidential title and issuing other sanctions.

Lieberman’s post, with a photo of Ms. Gatwech, was not only racist but also sexist. “It is not a work of art made of black stone or granite,” read the original tweet, published by a user with the handle @zg4ever. Further, he wrote that Gatwech “is in the Guinness Book of World Records for the darkest skin on Earth. But in 2020, Guinness tweeted and clarified that it does not monitor skin tone.” [10]



Rev. Shaw, also a spokesperson for the mental health watchdog Citizens Commission on Human Rights International, which helped found the Task Force Against Racism and Modern-Day Eugenics, notes examples of psychiatry’s racist history:

  • In 1792 Benjamin Rush, the “father of American psychiatry,” declared that African American’s skin color derived from a “disease” called Negritude, which he theorized was a form of leprosy. The “cure” was when their skin turned “white.[11]


  • In the 1950s U.S. psychiatrist J.C. Carothers argued that in many ways the African resembles a European 8- or 9-year-old child in his reaction to the environment. He compared Africans to a “leucotomized European.”[12]

 

  • 1960s: Psychiatrists claimed civil rights protests caused violent “schizophrenic” symptoms in “Negro populations,” calling this “protest psychosis.” African American men were said to have developed “hostile and aggressive feelings” and “delusional anti-whiteness after listening to civil rights leaders.” Ads for antipsychotics used African symbols to reflect so-called “violent traits” in Blacks.[13]

 



  • 1990s: NIMH Director, psychiatrist Frederick Goodwin, compared Black youth to “hyperaggressive” and “hypersexual” monkeys in a jungle who only want to kill one another, have sex and reproduce. He was forced to resign. He helped developed a “Violence Initiative” program to look for a “violent” gene in African Americans and Hispanics that could be controlled by psychiatric drugs, including the antidepressant Prozac—known to cause violent and suicidal behavior.[14]

 

  • 1990s: As reported by The Black Chronicle, The New York State Psychiatric Institute has its own history of racial discrimination and questionable practices. The facility came under fire in 1998 after news broke of research involving Black and Latino children targeted to test a theory about criminal or violent behavior and given a drug that was later pulled from the market. According to The New York Times, the researchers targeted boys 6-10 who were the younger brothers of people labeled at the time as “delinquents.”

 

Shaw rejected explanations for Lieberman’s behavior, including Robert Klitzman, a professor of psychiatry at Columbia, who described the episode as “unfortunate” and said it “really highlights how deep and pervasive some of our own unconscious biases can be.”[15] “I don’t believe this was some ‘unconscious’ bias,” Shaw said. “You could never excuse slave owners’ brutality by saying they were ‘unconsciously’ indoctrinated in the fraudulent idea that Africans were genetically inferior to white humans, justifying their enslavement.”



Comments from others include:

  • “We condemn the racism and sexism reflected in Dr. Lieberman’s tweet and acknowledge and share the hurt, sadness, confusion, and distressing emotions you may be feeling,” Thomas Smith, the new acting director of the New York Psychiatric Institute and other leaders said in an email to staff. [16] 
  • “It’s unconscionable that anyone would post that anywhere—it is nothing but hurtful and propagates racism. That it was a psychiatrist in such a position of power and authority makes it that much worse. An apology is no longer enough—that is just words.” – Dr. Daniel Block, psychiatrist[17]
  • A dozen doctors called the Coalition of Concerned Analysts of Color at Columbia sent a mass email to the psychiatric department demanding Lieberman’s resignation, condemning his beliefs and stating: “We do not support such views and condemn these beliefs and actions. Nor do we support a department that continues to employ anyone holding them….”[18] 

 

  • The Columbia Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons wrote to leaders at four institutions affiliated with Lieberman questioning if New York Presbyterian Hospital is safe for students and patients of color.[19] 

 

Lieberman’s Past Comments: “self-promotional and condescending” ….

Lieberman has a controversial past, including being irrationally critical of anyone opposing his or psychiatry’s works—making accusations of the type that are now being similarly directed at him, but with merit.

  • In 2013, Lieberman was APA president when the organization’s Diagnostic & Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) was released, garnering international criticism from mental health professionals with threats to boycott its use. Lieberman told Psychiatric News that he’d hired a public relations firm to address psychiatrists being “stigmatized” in the wake of this outcry over the manual.
  • “Psychiatry remains blind to the fact that it is its own spurious pathologizing of its clients that creates the stigma. It has no interest in genuine reform, but instead is embarked on a tawdry PR campaign to whitewash its transgressions and sell its concepts to the media, stakeholders, and the general public.” – Psychologist Philip Hickey, Ph.D.[20]
  • “Tawdry PR explains both his comments at that time and today,” Rev. Shaw opined. Lieberman justified the DSM-5, stating “…it represents a system that is as good as we can have, given our current state of knowledge” and psychiatry has “no better alternative.”[21]

 

  • Judy Stone, writing in Scientific American, commented on Lieberman’s criticism of those expressing disfavor toward DSM-5. She called his views “self-promotional and condescending,” adding that he “stoops to disparaging characterizations of critics…” Dr. Stone quipped: “…it makes me wonder if there is a DSM-5 diagnosis for someone who is self-serving, can’t accept criticism, and believes critics are prejudiced bigots?”[22] 

 

  • Further, Dr. Stone wrote: “I was very disappointed to see Dr. Lieberman’s shallow, self-serving and evidence-free diatribe appear in Scientific American as a guest opinion. He failed to reveal important conflicts of interest. He made serious claims for which he presented no evidence. He has made thinly veiled personal attacks on his critics, without offering anything substantive to counter rationally.”

 

  • With Frederick Goodwin targeting African American children targeted to be drugged with Prozac in the late eighties to “curb” their supposed “violence,”, it is notable that in 1991, Lieberman was a member of the FDA’s Pharmacologic Drugs Advisory Board, which met to hear evidence that Prozac could cause violent and suicidal behavior. At the time, Lieberman had financial ties to antidepressant makers.[23] Despite damning evidence, the committee refused to support a warning that Prozac or antidepressants could cause violent/suicidal behavior. (Since then, dozens of school shootings have been linked to teens taking antidepressants documented to cause hostility.)

 

  • In 1997, Lieberman helped with the formation of the International Early Psychosis Association, along with Australian psychiatrist, Patrick McGorry. Between 2002 and 2010, Lieberman was Vice President for the group’s North America sector and in 2014, was Vice President for the entire group. McGorry came under criticism for promoting the theory of “Psychosis-Risk Syndrome” for which individuals from age 14 could be arbitrarily determined to be at risk or developing psychosis and drugged with antipsychotics before the onset of psychosis to “prevent” it. The problem was that the “diagnosis” had a more than 80% false positive rate and psychosis is a side effect of antipsychotics.[24] Lieberman and McGorry are on the Editorial Board of The World Journal of Biological Psychiatry—a position Lieberman should resign from.

 

  • In 2003, in response to British regulators warning doctors not to prescribe antidepressants to those aged 18 and younger because of the risk of suicide, Lieberman told The New York Times, ‘‘I think they’re really overreacting. This is really going way too far, and in the process doing more harm than good.’’[25] However, in 2004, the FDA also found that antidepressant use in youngsters and young adults could cause suicidal behavior. It then mandated manufacturers to place a black box notice on drug packaging, warning of the risk of suicide. After the FDA issued the warning, Lieberman’s rhetoric changed, now claiming there “wasn’t sufficient evidence to support a link between these drugs and suicide,” in 1991.[26]

 

One former trainee of Lieberman told THE CITY in the wake of his current racist comments that no one was “surprised” by his remarks:

Everyone had a very low opinion of him [Lieberman] but no one says or does anything about it.” He was very powerful, that “If you write a grant, he has to write the letter of support.” – Former trainee of Lieberman[27]

Rev. Shaw adds: “This is the character of the man who now—in response to his racist comments said: ‘An apology from me to the Black community, to women, and to all of you is not enough. I’ve hurt many, and I am beginning to understand the work ahead to make needed personal changes and over time to regain your trust.’”[28]

 

Rev. Shaw called the apology self-serving and reiterated that Lieberman should be denounced internationally and any pharmaceutical company affiliations should remove him as a speaker, consultant, advisory board member or researcher. In December 2020, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company in Spain, announced collaboration with Lieberman and other researchers from Columbia University that the Task Force will seek revocation of the relationship.[29]

 

Rev. Shaw’s Task Force will write to government agencies and private companies and organizations to ask them to remove Lieberman as one of their experts and will also contact psychiatric agencies or groups planning on having him as a speaker.[30]

 

The Task Force Against Racism and Modern-Day Eugenics comprises over 100 African American community members that want to see racism eliminated from the mental health field and greater accountability instituted in the psychiatric industry for racist and harmful treatment of minorities.

References:

[1] Lola Fadulu, “Columbia Psychiatry Chair Suspended After Tweet About Dark-Skinned Model: The post from Jeffrey Lieberman, which described the model as possibly a ‘freak of nature,’ drew negative attention from medical professionals,” The New York Times, 23 Feb 2022, Updated 24 Feb 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/23/nyregion/columbia-jeffrey-lieberman.html

[2] Ibid.

[3] “Interview: In search of the pathophysiology and prevention of schizophrenia,”

Lieberman, Jeffrey A., Neuropsychiatry; London Vol. 1, Iss. 3, (Jun 2011): 225-231. DOI:10.2217/npy.11.30, https://www.proquest.com/docview/912446471

[4] Josefa Velasquez “A Racist Tweet by Columbia Psychiatry Chair Ripples Through New York’s Elite Medical Circles,” The City, 24 Feb. 2022, https://www.thecity.nyc/2022/2/24/22949146/racist-tweet-columbia-psychiatry-chair-jeffrey-lieberman-new-york-medical-elite

[5] Ibid.

[6] Op. cit., The New York Times

[7] Op cit., The City

[8] https://www.cchrint.org/2021/01/26/american-psychiatric-associations-apology-for-harming-african-americans-rejected/, citing: Megan Brooks, “APA Apologizes for Past Support of Racism in Psychiatry,” Medscape, 19 Jan 2019, https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/944352?src=wnl_edit_tpal&uac=345404PY&impID=3143084&faf=1

[9] Anna Madaris Miller, “Top psychiatrist suspended after tweeting about a Black model, using the phrase ‘freak of nature,’“ Insider, 24 Feb 2022, https://www.insider.com/columbia-psychiatrist-jeffrey-lieberman-suspended-tweet-black-model-2022-2

[10] Nick Mordowanec, “Columbia Psychiatry Chair Suspended After ‘Racist’ Tweet About Black Model,” Newsweek, 24 Feb. 2022, https://www.newsweek.com/columbia-psychiatry-chair-deactivates-twitter-account-after-racist-tweet-1681877

[11] https://www.cchrint.org/2021/01/26/american-psychiatric-associations-apology-for-harming-african-americans-rejected/, citing: Prof. Thomas Szasz, M.D., The Manufacture of Madness: A Comparative Study of the Inquisition and the Mental Health Movement, Jan. 1970, p. 154

[12] https://www.cchrtaskforce.org/articles/mental-health-racism

[13] https://www.cchrint.org/2019/07/17/minority-mental-health-month-may-spell-mental-health-slavery/ citing Jonathan M. Metzl, The Protest Psychosis, How Schizophrenia became a Black Disease, (Beacon Press, Boston, 2009), pp. xii, xiv, p. 101

[14] https://www.cchrint.org/2020/06/16/naacp-inglewood-executive-educates-about-psychiatric-racism/ citing “U.S. Hasn’t Given Up Linking Genes to Crime,” The New York Times, 18 Sept. 1992, https://www.nytimes.com/1992/09/18/opinion/l-us-hasn-t-given-up-linking-genes-to-crime-153192.html

[15] Op. cit., The New York Times

[16] Ibid.

[17] Ronny Reyes, “Columbia University psychiatry department chair is suspended after referring to a dark-skinned model as ‘a freak of nature’” Daily Mail, 24 Feb 2022, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10548689/Columbia-University-prof-suspended-referring-dark-skinned-model-freak-nature.html

[18] Op. cit., The City

[19] Op. cit., Insider

[20] https://www.cchrint.org/2021/03/08/resource-on-why-psychiatry-is-upset-about-its-failures-and-critics/

[21] https://www.cchrint.org/2021/03/08/resource-on-why-psychiatry-is-upset-about-its-failures-and-critics/, citing: Michael Vlessides, “The Past, Present, and Future of the DSM,” Medscape, 15 Dec. 2020, https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/942694

[22] https://www.cchrint.org/2021/03/08/resource-on-why-psychiatry-is-upset-about-its-failures-and-critics/, citing: Judy Stone, “Anti-Psychiatry Prejudice? A response to Dr. Lieberman,” Scientific American, 24 May 2013, https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/molecules-to-medicine/anti-psychiatry-prejudice-a-response-to-dr-lieberman/

[23] Talking Back to Prozac: What Doctors Aren’t Telling You About Today’s Most Controversial Drug Mass Market, 1994, pp. 198, 285

[24] Sue Dunlevy, “US expert slams Patrick McGorry’s psychosis model,” The Australian, 14 June 2011, https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/us-expert-slams-patrick-mcgorrys-psychosis-model/news-story/17af8dc06430231afbf44bc9df2d38bf

[25] Erica Goode, “British Warning on Antidepressant Use for Youth,” The New York Times, 11 Dec. 2003, http://www.nytimes.com/2003/12/11/world/british-warning-on-antidepressant-use-for-youth.html

[26] http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/963903/posts

[27] Op cit., The City

[28] Olafimihan Oshin, “Columbia chair suspended after tweet about model of South Sudanese descent,” The Hill, 23 Feb. 2022, https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/595599-columbia-chair-suspended-after-tweet-about-black-model

[29] https://www.einnews.com/pr_news/532992356/oryzon-launches-pioneering-schizophrenia-precision-medicine-study-in-collaboration-with-columbia-psychiatry

[30] https://www.speakerbookingagency.com/talent/jeffrey-lieberman

 

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Sandy McNownDirector of Public Activities, CCHR International
s.mcnown@cchr.org www.cchrint.org 

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