Toward Freedom Editor Julie Varughese recently spoke with Ramiro Sebastián Fúnez, who produced a film, “Nicaragua Against Empire,” which premiered May 15 on YouTube. The film casts a lens on the landscape, culture and geopolitics that led to the ongoing Sandinista Revolution.
Chadians protested May 14 at the Embassy of France in Washington, D.C., in response to a French-backed coup to install the son of Idriss Déby, which they assert is in violation of the country's constitution.
Dear Toward Freedom readers:
This week, Toward Freedom’s Board of Directors bids farewell to guest editor Charlotte Dennett, welcomes Toward Freedom’s new editor, Julie Varughese, and extends a heartfelt thanks to Sam Mayfield who stepped down as President of Toward Freedom’s Board of Directors in December, 2020.
Charlotte Dennett stepped in as Toward Freedom’s guest editor last October. Her decades-long experience as a scholar, author and activist allowed Charlotte to seamlessly step into the position serving Toward Freedom’s mission, “to publish international reporting and incisive analysis that exposes government and corporate abuses of power, while supporting movements for universal peace, justice, freedom, the environment, and human rights.”
He was best known as “World Citizen # 1.”.He was a former WWII bomber pilot who was so pained about having bombed a civilian city that, in 1948, he gave up his US national citizenship and declared himself a citizen of the world. Many more acts of defiance would follow, landing him in prison 34 times. Now, the late Garry Davis (1921-2013), whose obituary appeared on the front page of the New York Times, is the subject of a newly released documentary by Arthur Kanegis and Melanie N. Bennett called The World is My Country. It is now airing on public television stations across the country -- including Vermont broadcasts on May 2.
By Charlotte Dennett
The televised trial of (former) officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd has once again brought home how deeply embedded racism is in our “Anglo-Saxon” culture. New video footage of Floyd’s cries for help, accompanied by bystanders’ anguished protests throughout the entire 9 minute and 29 seconds of his painful demise, will hopefully have far-reaching ramifications regarding police reform and legislative actions to redress racist policies in the U.S.
What you may not know is that the demonstrations following George Floyd’s death last summer caused considerable introspection and angst in American newsrooms over an issue that may strike some as relatively trivial, but to editors throughout the U.S. was long overdue and fraught with meaning: whether to capitalize the word “black” in reference to “peoples of African ancestry.”
The More We Know…
…the worse it gets. That’s been the commentary from media pundits and members of Congress since the Trumpers’ assault on the US capitol on January 6th. We now know that members of Congress phoned good-bye messages to loved ones as they lay huddled on the floor of the House chamber before Security was able to whisk them away to safety. The marauders came within minutes of confronting Vice President Pence, accusing him of treason for failing to stop the certification of the November election and vowing to string him up. (One of them was carrying a noose). A security briefing by the acting Capitol police chief – described by members as” horrific and chilling” – told them their purchase of bullet-proof vests would be compensated. Members of the National Guard are now sleeping on the floors inside the Capitol – somewhat reassuring the lawmakers.