Midday open thread: Confederate monuments rise on private land; 19 indicted in Turkish embassy melee

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

Today’s comic by Matt Bors is Trump condemns both sides of natural disaster:

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New Rebel monuments are being installed on private land:

[A]mid the furor over Confederate monuments, touched off by the violence in Charlottesville, Va., two weeks ago, an unexpected reality has largely been overshadowed: While old monuments erected in bygone eras are coming down, new ones continue to go up. […]

But if the memorials of yesteryear were put in busy public squares, today’s are mostly appearing far from the bustle of daily life on plots of private land, or on battlefield sites, Professor Brundage said. It is a sign that while most Americans may oppose the tearing down of old monuments, the building of new ones is no longer finding acceptance in broader society, something even proponents of the monuments acknowledge.

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EPA says scientists are trying to politicize Hurricane Harvey:

Several scientists have said that factors related to global warming have contributed to increased rainfall from storms like Harvey, which struck the Texas coast as a major hurricane on Friday and has since triggered catastrophic flooding in Houston, killing at least 12 people and forcing tens of thousands from their homes.

“EPA is focused on the safety of those affected by Hurricane Harvey and providing emergency response support – not engaging in attempts to politicize an ongoing tragedy,” said EPA spokeswoman Liz Bowman, responding to a question about comments from the climate scientists.

Meanwhile, the Wisconsin woman picked to run EPA’s Region 7 office is a disaster for environment in her previous job. Her name is Cathy Stepp and she ran the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources before Donald Trump picked her for secretary of the Region 7. The region covers Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, and Nebraska:

During Stepp’s six-year tenure at DNR, fines for environmental violations dwindled, and the EPA twice stepped in to spur department action after residents complained of problems like manure-contaminated drinking water. […]

Under Stepp, enforcement of environmental violations has declined, vacant staff positions increased and both the EPA and the state audit bureau have pressed the DNR to remedy deficiencies in water quality programs. Citizen groups and the EPA have urged the department to do more about contaminated drinking water in areas with large animal feedlots.

 Most Harvey victims aren’t covered by flood insurance:

Insurance experts say only a small fraction of homeowners in Harvey’s path of destruction have flood insurance. That means families with flooded basements, soaked furniture and water-damaged walls will have to dig deep into their pockets or take on more debt to fix up their homes. Some may be forced to sell, if they can, and leave their communities.

Grand jury indicts 19 over May 16 melee outside Turkish embassy:

Federal prosecutors on Tuesday announced indictments against 19 people with ties to Turkey’s government who are accused of assaulting protesters near the Turkish embassy in Washington earlier this year.

Fifteen of the people for whom the D.C. grand jury returned indictments are Turkish security officials who allegedly assaulted protesters who demonstrated against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during and after his visit to the White House in May.

• Houston’s Human Catastrophe Started Long Before the StormDecades of neglect, inequality, and disenfranchisement mean that all Houstonians, but especially the poorest and most vulnerable, have been left utterly undefended.

Ruth Hopkins: Violence against American Indian women perpetuates genocide:

If you want to destroy a people, you target the women. We are the root, the heart, and the backbone. We are Mother. We birth mighty red nations. That’s why colonial governments forcibly sterilized thousands of Native women for decades.

They are still killing us.

There are very little statistics available on the epidemic of missing and murdered Native women, but I can tell you this, the numbers are staggering. Here are a few Native sisters I cannot and will not forget.

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin brought us the latest headlines on Harvey and Houston. Joan McCarter was on hand to warn us of the September from hell, and straighten us out on just what was & wasn’t happening between Trump & Mattis on transgender service members.

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