Deputies Accused of Being in Secret Societies ; White Christian America Needs a Moral Awakening ; and More Picks 8/5

Deputies Accused of Being in Secret Societies Cost LA County Taxpayers $55 Million (Reader Steve)

From the Los Angeles Times: “Los Angeles County has paid out roughly $55 million in settlements since 1990 in cases in which sheriff’s deputies were alleged to belong to a secret society, records obtained by The Times show. … The report, prepared by L.A. County attorneys, lists nearly 60 cases, some of them pending, and names eight specific cliques. The county has paid out nearly $21 million in cases that began in the last 10 years alone. The high cost underscores how these deputy groups — with monikers such as the Vikings, Regulators, 3000 Boys and the Banditos — have operated out of several Sheriff’s Department stations for decades, exhibiting what critics have long alleged are the violent, intimidating tactics similar in some ways to criminal street gangs.”

White Christian America Needs a Moral Awakening (Gerry)

The author writes, “Underneath the glossy, self-congratulatory histories that white Christian churches have written about themselves—which typically depict white Christians as exemplars of democratic principles and pillars of the community—is a thinly veiled, deeply troubling past. White Christian churches have not just been complacent or complicit in failing to address racism; rather, as the dominant cultural power in the U.S., they have been responsible for constructing and sustaining a project to protect white supremacy.”

What Police Really Believe (Dana)

From Vox: “Something about the way police relate to the communities they’re tasked with protecting has gone wrong. Officers aren’t just regularly treating people badly; a deep dive into the motivations and beliefs of police reveals that too many believe they are justified in doing so.”

Homeland Security Is Quietly Tying Antifa to Foreign Powers (Reader Pat)

The author writes, “DHS intelligence officials are targeting activists it considers ‘antifa’ and attempting to tie them to a foreign power, according to a DHS intelligence report obtained exclusively by The Nation. The intelligence report, titled ‘The Syrian Conflict and its Nexus to the U.S.-based Antifascist Movement,’ mentions several Americans, including a left-wing podcast host who traveled to Syria to fight ISIS. … ‘They targeted Americans like they’re Al Qaeda’ a former senior DHS intelligence officer with knowledge of the operations told The Nation.”

Lead From Notre-Dame Fire Discovered in Parisian Beehives (Dana)

The author writes, “University of British Columbia researchers Kate Smith and Dominique Weis and a team of scientists collected 36 honey samples from urban beehives in Paris in July 2019, according to a statement. They found that honey from hives downwind of Notre-Dame had lead concentrations on average four times higher than samples collected in nearby suburbs, and up to three and a half times higher than the typical amount for Parisian beehives before the fire.”

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