There are few topics more depressing than that of crimes committed by young people. But a shocking study regarding the make up of the children in the American juvenile delinquency system has come back in the public consciousness.
A report for the National Council on Crime and Delinquency says that 40% of girls in the juvenile delinquency system fall under the LGBTQ umbrella. Shocking.
The report was authored by Dr. Aisha Canfield and Dr. Angela Irving.
“New NCCD research findings from a sample of 1,400 girls in juvenile jurisdictions around the country show that 40% of girls in the juvenile justice system are lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning, or gender-nonconforming (LBTQ/GNC), and 86% of girls in the system are of color.[i]” Irving explained in a blog post.
She further went on to elaborate that these girls would end up there due to committing what she called “survival crimes” such as prostitution.
OZY commented that falling under the LGBTQ umbrella set these girls up for further discrimination and harsh treatment, which leads to them being placed in juvenile hall.
“‘LGBT of both sexes are also three times more likely to receive disproportionately harsh consequences at school, while also being the target of harassment. Perhaps surprisingly, LGBT girls are more likely to get in trouble for fighting; for boys, it’s disruptive behaviors in the classroom.”
This information means that people who work in juvenile halls should probably have to adapt their training and practices to learn how to address issues that girls who fall under the LGBTQ umbrella could face.
“I think statistics like that really identify the importance for us to think intersectionally…A lot of times when we think about the criminal justice systems it’s often directed at young black men… this is not only about young black men, it’s about young black trans women, it’s about young cis women, it’s about the LGBTQ population also,” Jonathan Lykes, policy analyst of the Center for the Study of Social Policy told the Huffington Post. “So really understanding how all of these different populations are impacted by these oppressive systems.”
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Exclusive: Man Says Florida Bar Bouncer Physically Moved Him Off Dance Floor Because He Is Gay
A gay couple was physically separated from each other Saturday night by a bouncer working at a Boca Raton, Florida bar.
Joseph Raia, a 22-year-old Florida State University graduate and Miami native, said on his Facebook that he and his boyfriend were singled out because of their sexuality.
Raia’s social media post quickly went viral after he blasted Blue Martini Boca for the treatment he said that he received at the bar.
“The bouncer was paid to remove us from the bar because the men who ordered the bottle service did not want us there anymore because we were gay.”
“For the past four years I have been openly gay and extremely fortunate to have never had a problem, felt threatened, or been discriminated against because of who I am until Saturday night, Raia wrote on the social media site. “I am proud and happy of who I am but unfortunately I experienced how hateful homophobia can be at Blue Martini Boca.”
Raia said that he was dancing with his boyfriend within a group of four other friends when he was grabbed and separated from them.
“The bouncer had pulled me off saying ‘We can’t have this here, you two can’t be here, you need to stop it and leave,'” Raia said. “I was genuinely shocked and did not understand why or where it was coming from. I kept asking why this was happening, what was his reason for attempting to kick us out.”
Raia said that he knows the reason for the physical treatment he received.
“A friend had come up to us to see what was going on and said he had witnessed a man who had ordered bottle service give the bouncer cash, thinking to himself that it was weird, but now making sense,” Raia said. “The bouncer was paid to remove us from the bar because the men who ordered the bottle service did not want us there anymore because we were gay.”
Another bouncer at the bar came over to Raia and apologized about the incident and said that the bouncer who touched Raia would be “reprimanded.”
“The manager on duty had said the same thing, that Blue Martini does not stand for this, and gave us $100 gift card to use when we return. I said I would never be coming back and we had spent much more than that, having a great night until that point but he would not let us leave without taking it,” Raia wrote on Facebook. “We left upset, hurt, and threatened since we did not know if the men would become physical towards us. I have never in my entire life felt wrong for being who I am and after the support from friends and family now realize that we were not wrong for dancing with each other.”
In an interview with Rise News, Raia said that he thinks the bouncer who got physical with him should be fired.
“As for the bouncer that tried to eject us, I would like to know that he has been removed from his position. The manager said there would be an investigation and then he would be reprimanded, but a slap on the wrist isn’t enough of a consequence for his illegal act of discrimination and bribery,” Raia told Rise News. “In our shock and being upset, we did not file a police report l, which we should have. At the time all we wanted to do was leave before someone got physically hurt.”
Raia said that he was fearful that the men who ordered the bottle service would turn physical toward he and his boyfriend.
“I am unapologetically proud of who I am and who I have become and I will not change because of pressures from someone else.”
“The men who ordered bottle service did not directly speak with us, only the bouncer,” Raia said. “They just stared at us, which was why the second bouncer suggested us to move.”
Rise News has tried to reach Blue Martini Boca for comment numerous times. A manager on call Wednesday evening said that she did not know who the on-call manager was on Saturday, and had not heard about the incident. The general manager of the bar could not be reached for comment before publication of this story.
Raia said that he would not be returning to any of the 12 Blue Martini locations.
“It is true that the actions of one man does not represent the actions of the group, but all the locations look the same. I would not feel comfortable being in the same environment that the incident occurred in,” Raia told Rise News. “As it stands now, I feel like I have to watch my back while walking down the side walk with my boyfriend. I know there is a time and place to show affection freely but I stand by my belief that we did nothing wrong.”
Raia ended his viral Facebook post with a poignant message.
“Our love is the same as anybody else’s love,” Raia said. “I am unapologetically proud of who I am and who I have become and I will not change because of pressures from someone else.”
Rise News will update this story with additional information as it becomes available.
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Ten Reasons Abe Lincoln Would Be Rolling Over in His Grave TodayBy Contributor
By Andrew Feinberg
President Teddy Roosevelt put a portrait of Lincoln in the oval office and, when confronted with a problem, would ask, “What would Lincoln do?”
Today, the answer, I’m afraid, would be roll over in his grave. There are ten reasons for this and only some contain the words Donald Trump.
1. Donald Trump—In Lincoln’s day, the best people often ran for office. Today, well, maybe not. Being a lying, narcissistic, racist, misogynistic know-nothing does not seem to be an impediment to seeking the highest office in the land. Not yet, anyway. If the sixteenth president heard Trump say he was proud to belong to the party of Lincoln, he would wonder if his name had become a joke while he was away.
2. The new social civil war—Lincoln would be thrilled that we elected a black president but dismayed this milestone has enraged and emboldened racists. When Fox News ran an online story about Malia Obama deciding to attend Harvard, the piece drew so many racist responses—some with full names attached—that Fox had to shut down its Comments section.
3. Voter cynicism—In Lincoln’s day, citizens were passionate about politics. They flocked to political speeches as if they were sporting events. In 1860, the year Lincoln was first elected president, 81.2% of eligible voters cast ballots. In 2012, the number was a pathetic 57.5%. Lincoln considered politics a noble pursuit and he would be horrified to find that only 11% of Americans hold a favorable view of Congress.
4. The Internet—Lincoln would love the Internet—in theory. After all, it could spread detailed knowledge to every corner of the nation and create a more enlightened electorate. In theory. Alas, Lincoln would find it has become a wondrous mechanism for spreading lies. It has Balkanized the country at least as much as it has informed it.
5. Science denial—Lincoln was extraordinarily rational and curious. The only president to receive a patent, he signed legislation creating the National Academy of Sciences in 1863. If he came back and learned that, as the French ambassador to the U.S. put it, the only group of people in the world who do not believe in human-caused climate change are the Republicans in the U.S. Congress, he would not be amused.
6. Income inequality—Lincoln believed in a strong and growing middle class. He hated slavery partly because he believed it depressed wages for the average worker. He was a capitalist, but a somewhat unusual one by today’s standards. “Labor is the superior of capital,” he declared. If he learned that real wages for the middle-class had been falling in recent decades and that CEOs now out-earned the average employees in their companies by over 300 to one, he would be heartsick.
7. Crumbling infrastructure—Both the left and right agree that we have “third world” infrastructure. Lincoln wouldn’t know what “third world” meant—unless he landed at LaGuardia—but he would recognize underspending when he saw it. From his days as a state legislator in Illinois, he was passionate about government spending on “internal improvements,” as infrastructure was known back then.
8. Political purity—An irony of history is that Lincoln—the Great Emancipator—spent much of his political life battling abolitionists. He thought abolishing slavery was unconstitutional and believed that whites would never support a war whose primary objective was to end slavery. (The Emancipation Proclamation was permissible because it was enacted as a wartime measure.) Seldom an absolutist, Lincoln said the issue with a law “was not whether it has any evil in it; but whether it has more of evil than of good.” Our current inability to reach compromise solutions would dismay him.
9. Return of nativism—Donald Trump is stirring up, and profiting from, anti-immigrant feelings—much as the Know-Nothing party did in the late 1840s and early 1850s. Lincoln, who saw America as a haven of opportunity for everyone, would deplore such prejudice and might remind us that many male immigrants in the 1850s and 1860s joined the army and helped preserve the union.
10. Belief in government incompetence—Lincoln thought part of the federal government’s job was to do things for people they could not do themselves. He was an activist president. Under his leadership, the government established land-grant colleges (the forerunners of today’s great state universities) and passed the Homestead Act, which gave settlers 160 acres of federal land for a small filing fee. He knew from experience that government could do some things more effectively than the private sector. But times were different then. Oh, were they different.
Andrew Feinberg is the author of Four Score and Seven, a novel that imagines that Abe Lincoln comes back to life for two weeks during the 2016 campaign and encounters a candidate who resembles Donald Trump. Learn more about the book and author at www.MissingLincoln.com.
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for us.
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Is This South Africa’s Tiananmen Square Moment?
Bryce Swerhun had spent most of his time in Johannesburg safely away from the sounds of explosions near the University Of The Witwatersrand (Wits).
But something drew him to the campus on October 10 as scores of angry students gathered in a large protest for the elimination of college fees across the country.
What Swerhun, a Canadian who is in South Africa doing field work for his PhD program at City University of Hong Kong, saw there was nothing short of government sanctioned violence against young people on a scale rarely seen in liberal democracies.
Student organizers of the so called #FeesMustFall movement warned private security gathered on the steps of the Great Hall at the center of Wits’ campus that some among their number may start hurling stones at them unless they opened the doors to the building.
By the time Swerhun entered through the visitor gate and walked upon the scene, some protestors were indeed throwing stones at the security guards.
Then the police got involved.
“I saw the water cannon truck shoot up and spray the students below,” Swerhun said in an interview with RISE NEWS.
Swerhun said that “several hundred” student protestors were in the area around the Great Hall at the height of the clashes and that police were being very heavy-handed in the way in which they were breaking up the group.
Tear gas canisters leaving trails of smoke as they hit the ground. Rubber bullets thumping through the air. People yelling. People running.
Through the chaos in front of the Great Hall, Swerhun said that he saw one scene that reminded him of the troubling racist past of South Africa.
A white police officer had a group of black protestors cornered while allowing other students to freely pass. When a group of white students walked behind the officer without being stopped, the cornered black students started to argue how unfair it was.
This is what has become of Wits, one of the world’s top universities. Sad no? pic.twitter.com/3ja1OfCV0g
— Sure Kamhunga (@SureKamhunga) October 11, 2016
At a certain point, Swerhun decided that he had seen enough and that he wanted to get back to the safety of his hotel room.
He walked behind the Great Hall, where he spotted a church where some students seemed to be gathered.
He thought that he could escape from the campus by going through the church.
“The priest then slumped over and then the blood was pouring out. They shot him because he defied them.”
What follows sounds like it is straight out of movie.
“There was a significant moment that reminded me of Tiananmen Square,” Swerhun said.
When he reached the church, most of the students in the area where gathered in a parking lot. There he saw a priest in white robes standing in the entrance.
“He [the priest] seemed to be making a statement, that he was there and it was a place of refuge,” Swerhun said.
But then a massive armored police vehicle started racing towards the church.
“It was moving at quite a speed and everyone is running away,” Swerhun said. “When I get behind a parked car, I see the priest put his arm and the vehicle backed up and left.”
Joy swept through the crowd but it was a short-lived feeling.
“Another armored vehicle came and started shooting rubber bullets at random, Swerhun said. “The priest then slumped over and then the blood was pouring out. They shot him because he defied them.”
Swerhun said that the shooting of the priest had a profound impact on the people who witnessed it.
“Some people got really angry and I saw someone say ‘call up the people with the petrol bombs.'”
“This was nothing but a brutal show of state force,” Swerhun said. “Those police in the vehicle were not in any danger.”
The priest was then brought into the church were he was tended to by private paramedics.
Despite being shot in the face with at least one rubber bullet, he was able to walk out of the church to a waiting car.
While the violence has largely been ignored by the world’s media, it shouldn’t be.
The issue is unlikely to go away even though things are starting to calm down on the streets.
Sure Kamhunga, a political commentator who has a large Twitter following said in an interview with RISE NEWS that the government should do more to end the clashes.
“Meet the student body. Listen to their demands. Offer a solution that paves way for mutual understanding,” Kamhunga said in way of advice to President Jacob Zuma’s government. “Students have already proposed a funding model and that is a good start to reach a common understanding and solution.”
Calling Young South African Writers, Journalists And Leaders: Tell Your Story And Make A Difference
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