Tag Archives: Opposing oppression and injustice

People oppose injustice and oppression in  a social system.  These are some examples of the oppression and the opposition.

The erosion of U.S. democacy. Credit Freedom House

Democracy in Retreat: Freedom in the world 2019

Freedom House February 4, 2019

In 2018, Freedom in the World recorded the 13th consecutive year of decline in global freedom. The reversal has spanned a variety of countries in every region, from long-standing democracies like the United States to consolidated authoritarian regimes like China and Russia. The overall losses are still shallow compared with the gains of the late 20th century, but the pattern is consistent and ominous. Democracy is in retreat.

In states that were already authoritarian, earning Not Free designations from Freedom House, governments have increasingly shed the thin façade of democratic practice that they established in previous decades, when international incentives and pressure for reform were stronger. More authoritarian powers are now banning opposition groups or jailing their leaders, dispensing with term limits, and tightening the screws on any independent media that remain. Meanwhile, many countries that democratized after the end of the Cold War have regressed in the face of rampant corruption, antiliberal populist movements, and breakdowns in the rule of law. Most troublingly, even long-standing democracies have been shaken by populist political forces that reject basic principles like the separation of powers and target minorities for discriminatory treatment.

Some light shined through these gathering clouds in 2018. Surprising improvements in individual countries—including Malaysia, Armenia, Ethiopia, Angola, and Ecuador—show that democracy has enduring appeal as a means of holding leaders accountable and creating the conditions for a better life. Even in the countries of Europe and North America where democratic institutions are under pressure, dynamic civic movements for justice and inclusion continue to build on the achievements of their predecessors, expanding the scope of what citizens can and should expect from democracy. The promise of democracy remains real and powerful. Not only defending it but broadening its reach is one of the great causes of our time.

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El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua 2019

Nayib Bukele, an outsider candidate, claims victory in El Salvador election Gene Palumbo and Elisabeth Malkin New York Times February 3, 2019
“Analysts said…Mr. Bukele was able to set himself apart on the issue of corruption, which has roiled politics across Latin America and paved the way for candidates promising to combat it. In El Salvador, both traditional parties made for easy targets. Former President Tony Saca, an Arena politician, is serving a 10-year prison sentence after he pleaded guilty last year to charges of embezzlement and money laundering in the diversion of more than $300 million in public funds. Mauricio Funes, a former television broadcaster who was the F.M.L.N.’s first president, is accused of embezzling $351 million. In 2016, he fled to Nicaragua, which has granted him asylum. ”

Killings of Guatemala’s indigenous activists raise specter of human rights crisis  Maria MartinNPR January 22, 2019
“Maya communities bore the brunt of almost four decades of a civil war that ended in 1996, leaving over 200,000 casualties, the majority indigenous Guatemalans, according to the United Nations. Now the mostly Maya organizations and many human rights groups worry that the violence is making a comeback: In just the last year, 26 members of mostly indigenous campesinoorganizations have been killed.”

Honduran crisis produces new caravan Jan Egeland Inter Press Service January 16, 2019

Opposing oppression, injustice 2019

Unpaid miners blocked a coal train in protest. Weeks later, they’re still there. Campbell Robinson New York Times August 19, 2019

The four ordinary people who took on big pharma Beth Macy New York Times July 20, 2019 (Opinion)
“They tried to warn us about the dangers of OxyContin. Almost two decades later, we’re finally listening.”

Puerto Rico has turned on its governor as deep unrest reaches the surface Arelis R. Hernández Washington Post July 21, 2019
“Puerto Rico has reached a turning point, with hundreds of thousands of protesters demanding that a generation of corruption, graft and class warfare here come to an end.”

The creeping criminalization of humanitarian aid The New Humanitarian June 7, 2019
“At the heart of the trial of a volunteer with American migrant aid group No More Deaths that began in Arizona last week lies the question of when humanitarian aid crosses the line and becomes a criminal offense…. Aid organizations have long faced suspensions in difficult operating environments due to geopolitical or domestic political concerns – from Pakistan to Sudan to Burundi – but they now face a new criminalization challenge from Western governments, whether it’s rescue missions in the Mediterranean or toeing the US counter-terror line in the Middle East. ”

An Arizona teacher helped migrants. Jurors couldn’t decide if it was a crime. Miriam Jordan New York Times June 11, 2019

I criticized Poland’s government. Now it’s trying to ruin me. Wojciech Sadurski Washington Post May 21, 2019

A widow’s pathbreaking election bid highlights a deep crisis in rural India Joanna Slater Washington Post May 15, 2019

A large crowd of people demonstrating against the Algerian government of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika who is seeking to remain in power after 20 years of continuous rule.
A scene from a February 2019 demonstration against the Algerian government of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika who is seeking to remain in power after 20 years of continuous rule. Credit : Tin Hinane El Kadi

Algeria’s uprising: The beginning of the end of ‘Le Pouvoir’? Tin Hinane El Kadi  Review of African Political Economy March 21, 2019

Tens of thousands protest Algerian leader’s quest for a fifth term Sudasarn Raghavan Washington Post March 1, 2019

Edwardo Frei Motalva, former president of Chile, who was assassinated in 1982, most likely on the orders of then-dictator Augusto Pinochet. Credit National Library of the [Chilean] Congress

Six men convicted in 1982 murder of Chilean leader Pascale Bonnefoy New York Times January 30, 2019
“A judge convicted six men on Wednesday in the 1982 murder of former President Eduardo Frei Montalva of Chile, then the leader of the moderate opposition against the dictator Augusto Pinochet. In an 811-page ruling, Judge Alejandro Madrid found that the men — a former security agent, four doctors and Mr. Frei’s driver — conspired to slowly poison Mr. Frei after he had surgery in a private clinic in Santiago, the capital, and then worked to conceal the autopsy report…. ‘The battle doesn’t end here,’ said Mr. Frei’s son, also named Eduardo Frei, who was a president himself from 1994 to 2000. ‘Our next task is to establish the political responsibilities of high government officials at the time. This wasn’t the work of a few agents or doctors.’ “

Killings of Guatemala’s indigenous activists raise specter of human rights crisis Maria Martin NPR January 22, 2019
“Maya communities bore the brunt of almost four decades of a civil war that ended in 1996, leaving over 200,000 casualties, the majority indigenous Guatemalans, according to the United Nations. Now the mostly Maya organizations and many human rights groups worry that the violence is making a comeback: In just the last year, 26 members of mostly indigenous campesino organizations have been killed.”

China 2019

How China uses high-tech surveillance to subdue minorities Chris Buckley and Paul Mozur New York Times May 22, 2019
“[The technician] showed how the system could retrieve the photo, home address and official identification number of a woman who had been stopped at a checkpoint on a major highway. The system sifted through billions of records, then displayed details of her education, family ties, links to an earlier case and recent visits to a hotel and an internet cafe. “

How China turned a city into a prison Chris Buckley, Paul Mozur and Austin Ramzy New York Times April 4, 2019

China: Founder of human rights website jailed for 5 years Patrick Poon Amnesty International January 29, 2019
“Liu Feiyue shone a light on the human rights violations faced by many people in China. But instead of addressing these abuses, the authorities have instead decided to unjustly silence him. “

China’s global battle over human rights James M. Dorsey The Globalist January 23, 2019 “China is leading the charge to undermine universally accepted concepts of human rights accountability and justice. What the Chinese have accomplished in a relatively short time, backed by autocrats elsewhere, is to turn human rights into an underrated, yet crucial battleground in the shaping of a new world order. Its basic interest is to strengthen the hand of repressive, autocratic or authoritarian regimes.”

Learning China’s forbidden history, so they can censor it Li Yuan New York Times January 2, 2019
“Thousands of low-wage workers in “censorship factories” trawl the online world for forbidden content, where even a photo of an empty chair could cause big trouble.”