“The reality is, on my watch, drug arrests in South Bend were lower than the national average, and specifically lower than in Indiana,” Buttigieg said, avoiding the question about the increase of arrests over marijuana during his term. He then spoke about opiate arrests and the crack epidemic of the 1990s.
ABC debate moderator Linsey Davis then steered the issue back to the question, noting that arrests of black people for marijuana possession went up. Buttigieg said the arrests only increased in drug cases connected to serious crimes like “gun violence and gang violence, which was slaughtering so many in our community — burying teenagers, disproportionately black teenagers.”
Davis then asked Warren if Buttigieg answered the question.
“No,” Warren said. Applause rippled through the crowd.
Time and again, we see how backlash on social media is used to bully people into submission and silence criticism. For writers and commentators like me, sometimes we have to weigh whether or not it’s even worth writing something that could incur the wrath of a political figure’s devout following. The backlash is important because it gives us insights into the nature of the political debate on social media — who has power, and how that power is wielded.
…The attacks against Warren come from the same corners of social media that disparage Democrats (like myself) as being “puppets,” “centrist,” “anti-Semitic, and “ageist” for having the audacity to question or scrutinize their chosen leader. People of color and women who dare to disagree with Sanders’ political assertions have often borne the brunt of this abuse.
…Disturbingly, there are times where you really can’t distinguish between the tone and tactics of Trump’s #MAGA nation and Sanders’ “Bros.”
…Bernie Twitter operates under the self-righteous guise of being the true progressives of the internet. This smugness distinguishes their tweets. But there’s nothing progressive about attacking members of your own party who may have reservations about the presidential candidate you’re supporting.
…Earlier this week, Sanders supporters made the #RefundWarren hashtag trend as they demanded the Warren campaign provide refunds — retaliation for Warren not backing down from her claim that Sanders told her women weren’t electable.
…As Trump’s supporters have shown us already, violent rhetoric has ripple effects.
…If this trend continues, I have a hard time accepting that Sanders is truly our best bet for social progress.
The documents — communications between associates of Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Kremlin-linked oligarch indicted by special counsel Robert Mueller for previous influence operations against the U.S. — laid out a new plot to manipulate and radicalize African Americans. The plans show that Prigozhin’s circle has sought to exploit racial tensions well beyond Russia’s social media and misinformation efforts tied to the 2016 election.
…One document said that President Donald Trump’s election had “deepened conflicts in American society” and suggested that, if successful, the influence project would “undermine the country’s territorial integrity and military and economic potential.”
…The documents contained proposals for several ways to further exacerbate racial discord in the future, including a suggestion to recruit African Americans and transport them to camps in Africa “for combat prep and training in sabotage.” Those recruits would then be sent back to America to foment violence and work to establish a pan-African state in the South, particularly in South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana.
…The blueprint, entitled “Development Strategy of a Pan-African State on U.S. Territory,” floated the idea of enlisting poor, formerly incarcerated African Americans “who have experience in organized crime groups” as well as members of “radical black movements for participation in civil disobedience actions.”
The goal was to “destabilize the internal situation in the U.S.”
…The Mueller report exposed how Russian trolls, employed by associates of Prigozhin, deliberately inflamed racial tensions by spreading false and incendiary stories to African Americans via social media. Among the objectives was to suppress black turnout in the 2016 U.S. election.
Another of the newly obtained documents is a map of the U.S. overlaid with information about African American population size in seven southern states. Also included are the number of subscribers to websites and social media accounts that were set up by Russian trolls at the IRA to spread race-baiting rhetoric, the latter of which were later removed by the social media companies.