Democracy Now! 2021-03-31 Wednesday
from new york this is democracy now getting back to go back whole. We don't get in the resistance to the military coup in verma continues despite a bloody crackdown. More than five hundred people have been killed during two months of protests including the deadliest day saturday alone when soldiers opened fire killing one hundred forty people including more children. We'll get an update from burmese student. Then today is international trans day. Visibility will look the wave of anti trans laws being enacted across the country the easy for transgender individuals to have the health care that they need which is what we want is gives a freedom of choice and service for those that might have a A conflict because of conscience to the very notion that transient vanity is going to be recognized. And one way that that is. Manifesting are in dozens of bills across the country that would banned trans young people from sports and health. Care for. We'll speak with trans activists chase strain. Gio and rock hell willis who say visibility alone will not keep transgender youth safe and we'll look at. How many states have excluded incarcerated people from light saving covid nineteen vaccines now. A new york. Judge has ruled. This is unfair and unjust for people held one of the largest correctional systems in the country. All that and more coming up. Welcome to democracy now democracy now dot org the quarantine report. I made me goodman the trial of former minneapolis. Police officer derek. Chauvin is entering its third day. Chauvin faces murder and manslaughter. Charges for killing. George floyd last may by kneeling on his neck for nine minutes and twenty nine seconds on tuesday jurors her chilling testimony from witnesses including darnell frazier. Who is just seventeen years old when you used her cell phone to film the killing of floyd her image was not broadcast on the court television feed because she was a minor at the time of his death. When i look at george floyd luke. My brother cousin uncle because they are all plaque. I have black brother have friends. And i look at that and i look at how that could have been one of them been nice. I stated apologizing for not doing more and these interacting in his life. It's not what absolute he's now eighteen year old daughter. Neyla frazier testifying at the trial of derek chauvin. Who she says should have saved. George floyd life the next martial artists donald williams who also witnessed floyd's death told prosecutor matthew frank. He called nine one one. After seeing chauvin put floyd and what williams had earlier called a blood choke at some point. Did you make a nine one one. Call that is correct Why did you do that. Because i believe i witness a murder and so are you felt the need to call the lawyers for officer. Derek chauvin attempted to counter the moving accounts by portraying the eye witnesses to george. Floyd death is being part of an angry mob but another one of the eye. Witnesses was an off duty firefighter. Emt genevieve hansen told prosecutor michael frank. She urged the police officers to check. George floyd pulses. He lay motionless on the ground. I also offered in my memory. I offered to walk. Walk them through it or them. If he doesn't have a pulse you need to start compressions and that wasn't done either. This are these things that you wanted to do. It would what. I would have done for anybody when you couldn't do that. How did that make you feel totally distress. Frustrated minneapolis fighter fire and ems genevieve. Hanson broke down in tears as she recalled. Seeing george floyd die and being prevented from helping him visit democracy now dot org to see all of our coverage on the police killing of george. Floyd brazil is facing mounting public health and political crisis on tuesday brazil recorded nearly thirty eight hundred new covid nineteen deaths its highest daily death toll yet. Meanwhile the heads of brazil's army navy and airforce all quit in an unprecedented move a day. After brazil's far-right presidential bolsonaro ousted his defense minister. As part of a broader cabinet shakeup developments. Have alarmed many in brazil. Who believed bolsonaro. Who is a former army. Captain will install ultra loyalist to the military post to consolidate his power at of next year's election when he's expected to be challenged by former president. Louis in osceola to silva the us covid nineteen death. Toll has topped five hundred fifty thousand by far the highest in the world. The true figure is likely far higher. A new study in american journal of public health suggests florida's undercounted. The number of cova deaths by thousands. This comes as arkansas has become the latest state to lift. Its statewide mask. Mandate ignoring calls by president biden for states to keep restrictions in places. Cova cases are rising and twenty six states in vaccine news. Pfizer has announced clinical trials. Show its covid. Nineteen vaccine is a hundred percent effective for youths between the ages of twelve and fifteen. Meanwhile the new york times has revealed. Nyu langone health. A major hospital system in new york city has set aside cova vaccine solely for employees of bloomberg. Which is run by the billionaire. Former mayor of new york mike bloomberg. The news comes just weeks after bloomberg philanthropies gave another part of nyu. That's new york university. A twenty five million dollar donation. In international news palestinian authorities have received one hundred thousand vaccine doses from china. In a boost to efforts to vaccinate the three million palestinians living in the west spank while vaccinated more than half of its population. It has largely refused to vaccinate palestinians. Except for some who work in israel. Or in the illegal settlements. The white house has unveiled a two trillion dollar jobs plan to help address the nation's deteriorating infrastructure it includes over six hundred fifty billion dollars for roads bridges railways and ports over three hundred billion dollars for housing infrastructure three hundred billion dollars for domestic manufacturing and billions for modernizing the electric power grid expanding broadband and eliminating lead pipes and drinking water systems to pay for the plan. President biden wants to increase the corporate tax rate from twenty one to twenty eight percent. Federal tax breaks for fossil fuel companies and crackdown on corporate tax attorney. Since a grand jury in texas is indicted. Two former police deputies on second degree manslaughter. Charges for killing javier ambler forty year. Old african american man. Ambler tasers to death in austin in march of two thousand and nineteen after being pulled over for not dimming his headlights for oncoming traffic as he was dying ambler said quote. I have congestive heart failure. And i can't breathe. Bail has been set at one hundred fifty thousand dollars for the two deputies. James johnson and zachary camden to police officers. The capital who were injured in the january six insurrection have sued former president trump for inciting and directing the right wing rioters. Meanwhile republicans are continuing to embrace backers of the violent insurrection. Videos emerged showing stewart roads. The founder of the far right group oath keepers spoken an official republican event in texas march. Twenty six in the border town of laredo. Other speakers at the event included texas republican party. Chairman alan west over a dozen members of the oath keepers have been charged with conspiracy for attacking the us capitol a warning to our audience. The following story includes graphic description video of a hate crime. new york. Police have arrested a man who viciously attacked a sixty five year old filipino. Woman near times square as she was walking to church on monday video footage shows the men kick the woman in her stomach and then repeatedly stomped on her face while reportedly laying anti asian slurs. The assailant walked away. Bystanders including security guards had luxury apartment. Building did nothing in response. New york mayor candidate entry yang condemned the attack and elderly asian woman. Walking the streets of hell's kitchen could easily then my mother because that's where we live And so when. I saw this video. That is who i thought of. My children are actually playing that playground across the street from that apartment building Regularly so seeing this happened in my neighborhood hit very close to home. Us attorney general merrick garland has ordered the justice department to conduct a thirty day review of what he called a disturbing trend of hate. Crimes targeting ericans in news from mali. United nations investigation has determined french warplanes bombed a wedding party in january killing nine thousand nine hundred civilians. The mass killing prompted protests and mali. Where france has deployed five thousand troops. France rejected the findings of the un report claiming all the victims were slavic militants. The biden administration's finally allowed some journalists inside a temporary customs and border protection jail in donna. Texas over forty one hundred asylum seekers including thirty four hundred unaccompanied children are being held at the site which has an official capacity of just two hundred fifty due to the pandemic children were seen crying as they lay on floor mats up being covered by foil blankets one. Cbs reporter counted six hundred fifteen children. In a plastic walled pod designed to hold just thirty two people. During the pandemic lawmakers in washington state have passed a bill banning four prophet prisons and immigrant detention facilities in a move that could result in the eventual shutdown of the northwest detention center in tacoma washington. Which is run by the geo group during the pandemic many asylum seekers imprisoned northwest launched several hunger strikes protesting the squalid dangerous conditions inside the ice jail. The bill now heads to governor jay inslee as desk. The new york state legislature has voted to legalize recreational marijuana for adults into expunge. The records of people previously convicted of possession of small amounts of marijuana governor. Andrew cuomo has vowed to sign the legislation. Florida republican congressman matt gates is facing a department of justice probe into whether he violated federal sex trafficking laws by having a sexual relationship with a seventeen year old paying for her to travel with him gates has denied the reports and claims. He's the victim of criminal. Extortion the probe grew out of an investigation of one of gates. His political allies joel greenberg who is indicted last year for sex trafficking of a child among other charges in two thousand nine hundred nine gates and greenberg visited the white house together. The expose was in the new york times and the notorious republican operative g. Gordon liddy has died at the age of ninety liddy spent four and a half years in jail for his role in the one thousand nine hundred seventy two break in of the democratic party national headquarters at the watergate complex which led to the downfall of richard nixon. He also wants admitted to making plans to kill. The investigative journalist. Jack anderson and romain chip fitzgerald has died in prison after being locked up for over fifty one years in california. He was the youngest imprisoned member of the black panther party for decades authorities in california who refused to grant him parole even after he had a stroke and was forced to use a wheelchair or walker. Chip fitzgerald was seventy one years old and those are some of the headlines assist democracy now democracy now dot org the quarantine report. I'm amy goodman in new york joined by democracy now co host one gonzales new brunswick new jersey high juan. Hi amy and welcome to our listeners. New viewers across the country and around the world. Well we begin. Today's show in burma. Where more than five hundred people have been killed. During protests against the february first military coup that toppled burma's democratically elected civilian government. At least one hundred forty. One people were killed on saturday alone in the bloodiest day. So far as soldiers opened fire on civilians demonstrating against military rule in dozens in cities and towns across the country. Children were among the dead including five year old boy. According to amnesty international and a thirteen year old girl on sunday burmese troops fired on a funeral service for twenty year. old student. Protester killed near the commercial capital rangoon. The attacks drew condemnation from the european union. United states uk germany with the u n special rapporteur for burma accusing the military regime of mass murder on tuesday. Us secretary of state. Tony blinken condemned the crackdown and called for international companies to consider cutting ties to enterprises that support burma's military. The people of burma are speaking clearly. They don't wanna live under military rule and that is evident from what we're seeing and hearing and witnessing and continue to call on the military regime to release all those people who've been unjustly detained stop its attacks on civil society members journalists labor unionists halt the killings by security forces and returned to power the democratically elected government. The united states is committed to working with its allies and partners to hold the perpetrators of these acts accountable. This comes as human rights. Activists are calling an international energy companies like chevron to withhold revenues from natural gas projects. They operate in burma from the hunter controlled government. Meanwhile an estimated three thousand people have fled southeastern burma into thailand. After the burmese military bombed areas controlled by the karen ethnic minority group. At least four hundred fifty nine people including at least thirty five children have been killed since the start of the protests according to rights groups burma is also known as myanmar military leaders changed the name to myanmar in one thousand nine hundred eighty nine after brutally. Suppressing a pro-democracy uprising. For more. we're joined by our and he is from rangoon. The former capital of burma formerly known that is now called yang-gon. He came to the us to attend college and a senior at the new york institute of technology. His recent for the colleges newspaper called the manhattan globe is headlined misogyny silenced. Feminism amplified welcome to democracy. Now it's great to have you with us. And first of all. I want to say you're incredibly brave to come on this broadcast to show your face and i'm wondering if you can talk about what's happening in your home country talk about your family and why you've chosen to do this first broadcast interview of your life. I'm so as we all know. On figure i the military took over as a coup in my country And ever since that it's been almost over two months now So many people have died so far like you said there's have there have been partnered fifty debts and that's just an estimate With a seven year old girl being one of the youngest victims of five year old boy recently And the situation by call does not seem to be getting any better. We have there. There's some days where like you know. People have a little more hope but they are most days. It's more gloomy Many of us abroad Were very worried about people back home. We wake up to more bad news every morning. More debts. It's just been chaotic. Everyone's really worried for my family Our families but My family calm. They're saying safe at home staying indoors during our best during the tough times. And i'm wondering if you could talk. You mentioned your family your parents themselves. Have they talked to you about their participation ago in in the nineteen eighties in the democracy movement. Then what's different about this movement versus the The up the uprising of of young people. Back then right. So my i know. I know that my parents had they were a part of the ninety eight revolution As people so many people Marched the streets back then They've told me stories about their crackdowns by ben but the thing is on the also said that the protests back then they lasted for only about two months because there was a huge miliket military crackdown. But the difference. Is that back then. They didn't have telecommunications and the internet like we do nowadays were also connected of. There's a lot of young people who are also technologically more on smart That are like now that we have a better sense of like sharing information on know what to do like if we're planning to do a certain protests today are happening unlike back then when they had no internet connections or phone calls so they had to just hide it homes and like surrendered to the coup. But what's different about this This time is we're also connected and everyone's very angry where gonna stop protesting. We're not gonna Submit to this military regime. It's time that the and step down. And i wanted to ask you a little bit in terms of the history of burma because the military has dominated the life of of the country ever since it became independent but it was for one hundred and twenty years. A colony of the british empire and the burmese army was in essence sort of create. Wasn't it during the japanese occupation during world war. Two by the the japanese fascists. I'm wondering what's the responsibility of countries like the uk and the rest of the world as you are battling to reestablish democracy right so the military edge very deep rooted in our history of like you said it was formed during the japanese takeover in our country back then and basically they rose into power when we Quote unquote won independence from a from the british So what happened was after we received a dependence of our of father of independence Will johnson he was assassinated and the country kind of went into turmoil. There was no rulers so the military stood up and like they took over and they have not like given back the power to the people sense So it's very deep-rooted and i believe that Countries like the united The united kingdom and like japan all these countries like They do have a sense. They do have a sense of responsibility to appoint that. Are you know this is a very deep rooted issue and they should be supporting the people In this modern world that we live in today your piece in the manhattan globe. The new york technology newspaper begins. I remember as a young boy sitting in restaurants and neighborhood teashops hearing sh- amongst the voices of conversations and the clinking chaos of spoons and ceramic cups when police or soldiers presence was detected. People would stop talking and try to ignore these men in uniform but the intimidated by them. Talk about growing up there and what your parents would say to you about what could be talked about. And now as you desperately tried to reach your parents on the phone Yes so. I grew up under the military regime Basically born into a and the world was just thinking about it. it was a scarier time But then as a kid. I didn't understand anything right because we will be out in public on. Everyone's scared of soldiers. I was just. I just thought soldiers to someone to be scared of on not loved or appreciated like in other countries like the united states. Where marines and soldiers are like you know like congratulated and like everyone is like everyone even when you see military bug marines on the streets people say. Thank you for your service. But that's not the experience that i had in my country instead we were taught to fear them Democracy is definitely not a word back. Then when i was growing up to be talked about dawn sensor g like we couldn't talk about her. We couldn't bring up her name anywhere in public because you never know who's listening Back then undercover cops were huge thing so even in lake teashops in restaurants getting breakfast. it's a huge. It's a huge culture my country to go to teashops in the morning to catch up and talk about the daily news and stuff so they purposely would place these undercover cops in these teashops and restaurants so that they can listen to the citizens conversations Prosecute them at will if they may Yeah so it was very interesting growing up experience. If i look back to it now you also write about. The women led revolution which i don't think people hear so much about in burma. You talked about dogs song. You talked about on sun. Suci who was detained by the military on february first at the time of the military coup but the significance of. Who's in the streets right now. Erin yeah so a few weeks ago. We had the two main revolution to main as like a salon or a skirt by traditional sarong one by the women of mar and Our country has deep-rooted like misogyny Just culture wise We have this idea called pony. Which is a the topic that i talked about in the second article that i wrote for school poem which is like it's the idea that men have higher aura or like physical just like look right Ben women so this idea had been ingrained in all of us But than this has nothing to do with religion or anything. It's just a cultural thing where we've been rates but with this revolution. A few weeks ago women stood up to the front lines and women have been standing up in this this revolution women have been on the front lines on. They've been showing men have been proving all these misogynistic men that they have the power they have like. They can do what these men are doing. and so they started going out on the protests that went out on the streets tied their sarongs to sticks and wave them. Slacks proudly up in the air They started tying the their loan. Jeez and their undergarments on the street. Polls because it's also a belief that Men are about to walk under underneath these skirts women's clothing items and stuff like that so these soldiers were actually hesitant to cross these lines because they were women's undergarments that were blocking away so they had to spend time taking them down which protesters time to run away from them. Hide from them So i'm just I just so happy with people's creativity. he's back home in the way with sweet protests. And how we do it so seamlessly peacefully an aaron about that issue of the a peaceful protests have long been a ethnic groups in different parts of the country that have resisted the the control of the central government and back into british colonial period the british actually pitted different ethnic groups within burma against each other. I'm wondering how use your sense. The the potential for these the armed groups of the the ethnic minorities to unite with the broader peaceful movement that has developed in the cities against the dictatorships correct Growing up We were all taught a we were all like the news media portrayed these ethnic on military groups as rebel groups right so until honestly up until the of the coup I also believe that to be true. I just thought that They had these rebel military groups Little did we know now that we're there speaking up about it on the now on there. Now we find out that this military like ethnic cleansing has been going on for way too long and the people of burma were unaware of it in the major cities but All they were trying to do is to protect their own people from the military And now all the So-called rebel groups but they are no longer rebel groups. They are fighting for us. They're fighting for the people of mir mar They have been joining together to form our military to serve under the crp. H which is the committee representing with. Look which is the democratic government. group that we the people of miramar elected in twenty twenty elections That happened over finally. Are you afraid for your family back in burma berry like i would. I would like to think that they'd be safe inside their own homes up until recently but just seeing videos and news of them just barging into people's houses with no respect for human life. It's just honestly like you'd never know what they will do. they're targeting any activists Any anyone honestly late who who would go into a house to murder seven year old child you know. Well i wanna thank you for being with us and for your bravery and speaking out burmese student. Who's come to the. Us for college is a senior. At the new york institute of technology we will link to your pieces in the manhattan globe among them misogyny silenced. Feminism amplified next up. Today is international trans day. Visibility will look at the wave of anti trans laws that are being enacted across the country. Stay with us here. Conman us with ma chong in so miss yang So far you faced and who am. They're being no to mom. Now by celeste. This is democracy now. Democracy now dot org the quarantine report. I mean goodman. Is we turn now to look at a wave of anti trans laws being enacted across the united states with dozens more anti trans bills making their way through state legislatures. this week. The arkansas senate approved one of the most harmful bands on access to healthcare for transgender youth. The measure would prohibit the use of gender affirming care including hormones in puberty blockers. Care that has been lifesaving unless republican governor ace hutchinson vetoes. The bill are console will become the first state to ban gender. Affirming care to trans-youth earlier. This month arkansas tennessee and mississippi enacted new laws aimed at banning trans athletes from joining sports teams in tennessee. The legislation forces trans students to show legal documents revealing the sex. They were assigned at birth in order to participate in middle and high school. Sports and in south dakota republican governor christie gnome issued two executive orders monday banning trans women and girls from playing school sports as attacks against the trans community intensify so has their resistance with trans-youth leading the fight against violence and discrimination trans seventh grader. Chris wilkinson who plays football for north middle school and harrisburg south dakota. His last score refused to let him. It's team because he's trans. Wilco said football has saved. His life did not exist. I don't think i would be here. Respect the person next to you in the person behind you just let them live their life the way they want to and makes them feel accepted. Because that's all anyone ever wants. Today is international trans day visibility which this year was marked with a week of action urging people to be active in the fight against antitrust legislation violence and discrimination joining us. Now a rocco willis activists award winning writer former executive editor of out magazine and former national organizer for transgender law center. And chase strange. You the deputy director for transgender justice with the lgbt an hiv project. Raquel and chase cole road. A new piece in the nation titled visibility alone will not keep transgender youth safe. We welcome you both packed a democracy. Now chase strange. Let's begin with you. Can you review for us. The laws that are being voted on a cross country store with the latest arkansas. We are truly witnessing and escalation of attacks on trans people. Unlike anything i've ever seen in government this week the arkansas senate passed. hp fifteen seventy a sweeping bill that would strip young people of healthcare that we know they need to survive. It is going to the governor's desk. We only have four more days for him to veto. This bill and young people and their families across arkansas are already planning for the worst. People are considering fleeing their homes. Having to relocate to other states. Young people are in sheer panic. We have to understand. This is medically supported care approved by every major medical association. That people need to stay well to stay alive and we were on the verge of having that stripped away from hundreds of people across the state of arkansas and unfortunately there are similar bills pending currently in alabama and tennessee part of this wave of anti trans legislation that started at the beginning of twenty twenty one and has escalated throughout the state legislative sessions and chase to. What do you attribute this sudden wave of legislation and all various states across the country. I mean you know. This year is particularly egregious and sweeping. But this is something that is been the culmination of work from an anti trans anti lgbtq lobby for the past at least seven years and of course we can trace this history going back much much longer we can look at the moral panic of anita bryant of phyllis schlafly and even just looking in one hundred years in the past and the ways in which colonial powers used regulation and control over upset bodies to exert power. So there's a long history here. I think what we're seeing today in state. Legislatures is a particular effort to pivot from the anti trans restroom bills into a new form of regulation of trans young people and trans bodies and they have seen an opening because they built alliances even with some people who consider themselves liberals and progressives who have either remained relatively complacent or who have joined forces and the attacks on trans young people. So right now. We're seeing an escalation in super majority republican legislatures where we are not countering that escalation with the appropriate level of resistance given the magnitude of harm that is going to result to bring into the conversation. Rocco you tweeted the quote. The gop continues to terrorize communities on the margins. All across this country. This is why we must come together on these fights as a black trans woman from georgia. It's not lost on me of these fights against people of color and lgbt lgbtq. Folks are connected. Can you elaborate on that absolutely. Yeah you know. i'm from georgia. And when i think about my life all of my identities have played a role in in the way that i've navigated society and of course the way that i have been made a target and so when i think about the recent passage of voter voter restriction back in Georgia i think about the wave and woods. It's all about policing communities of color and and that is completely tied to this fight and this onslaught against trans people. It's about policing our bodies right. And so this is about us interrogating what power looks like and how it is wielded within our society it makes absolutely no sense for these people to be trying to control the lives of vulnerable communities. And when i think about trans children is so horrible how they are being stripped of their childhood and not even look out the humans that they are. I wanted to ask chase about one of the. Aclu's clients dry a year would black trans student athlete. Andre is a recent high school graduate. Who ran on our schools. Girls track team. Let's go to her in her own words. One of the issues Our community is facing. It hasn't been facing for while is misinformation in general who we are in our community stands for in our community is and wanting to combat that is education more more education within our school system. So that people don't say oh that's a man or woman miss gender education very important in having to understand what we as a community. What gets you will stand for chase. Can you tell us about intra. Yeah so i just want to start by saying under a year. Would and terry miller too young trans athletes from connecticut to young black women who have endured so many attacks simply for existing and participating in school sports alongside their peers. As they have every right to do andrea is young person who graduated from high school. She was a track athlete. She trained every day for four hours. Worked so hard loved the sport. And how is she rewarded for that. She is the centerpiece of attack campaign with pieces on fox. News targeting her a lawsuit brought by alliance defending freedom on behalf of sis gender athletes trying to block her from running in her senior year which ultimately all of their senior seasons were cancelled because of covid but the lawsuit continues even though she has quit the sport altogether due to the ongoing harassment that she experienced the lawsuit is continuing because they are trying to strip her and terry of their past titles and any win that they have achieved. They're trying to get it. You raised from records even records that are hanging in their individual high schools. They have been the subject of so much misinformation and assault and claims that they have displaced this gender athletes when all they were doing was running consistent with their rights under state and federal law winning sometimes they lost this gender athletes. And i think an important clarification point here is that there are claims that gender athletes are going to be somehow displaced in scholarships by transgender athletes. No trent out. Transgender woman are athlete from high school has ever achieved or received athletic scholarship to compete in flex at the collegiate level. Because there is so much discrimination. Terry and andrea never once got a recruitment call even though all of this gender athletes who are trying to block them from participating are currently on athletic scholarship in division one schools. We have a serious conversation to have about. How much discrimination trans people are facing and yet they're still escalating attacks if you can also elaborate on that raquel and talk about the peace. The two of you co authored for the nation visibility alone will not keep transgender youth safe. What will rock cal. Yeah i mean. I think a big part of the work that safe and i have been partnering on over this last week. As we've expanded trans day visibility into trance week of visibility and action is really getting people to be about that action. And so that means we can't just rest on some of the social strides that we've made whether it's in hollywood or on different screens and these different sector. Those things are powerful and great and we definitely need to see more of our stories in media in the way but we also need to be using that action. Such chains are material reality and protect our right and so this week has rarely been for us all about getting people mobilize so that they can contact makers let them know that trans people have a whole group. Folks who support us are behind us who love us and wanted to see us. Safe and protected when i think about Trans you i think about two trans youth who actually really inspired me because of the way that their lives ended just a few years ago so within months of each other leila alcorn young trans girl and blake rocking sending young trans boy die by suicide right and we know based on the things that they said and the people who knew them and of course a suicide letter leila had published online after she pads is that they felt like they were not being supported that there was no future for them out openly trans youth. And i'm afraid that if we don't get involved and be active we're gonna see that trend continue and chase. Give us a quick shake on her. How you see the biden administration of the actions. It's taken on behalf of the trans community in three first three months of the presidency. I think we've seen some important federal executive actions coming down from this administration. And i hope to see way. More aggressive and robust actions from this administration enforcing federal civil rights laws. I also you know as we think about what today represents i also want to hold the fact that the law alone isn't isn't gonna save us that we are ultimately going to have to energize and mobilize and build power for our. If i think of the two things to central things for me as a trans person that saved my life or sports and health care and those are things that are being stripped away from our young people and yes we already have the legal rights. It's all of these bills are illegal. They violate title nine. They violate the constitution. But we need mass mobilization resources to our translate organizations and support for our communities materially beyond what visibility can afford. And even beyond what the law can afford chase. You spoke to joanna brand the mother of a fifteen year old trends boy ahead of arkansas state. Senate vote earlier this month. This is joanna speaking about the importance of gender. Affirming care for her son dylan today. After two years of therapy doctors visits and almost eighteen months gender affirming hormone therapy and don is happy. Healthy confident and hopeful for his future is outside now. Mattress deals on the inside and his support to other. Lgbt kids tramps Trans girls our girls in trans boys. Our boys denying access to gender affirming. Healthcare is denying the right to be themselves. My son will be devastated if he is forced to stop his hormone treatment. All of the progress that he has made all the plans to be able to graduate from high school and go off to college presenting outwardly. In the full expression of how does the insider would come to a screeching halt. It would be heartbreaking. Not only for him but for all the other trans youth in arkansas. That depend on this care chase strange you. It looks like the governor is going to sign this legislation. is that right. I am hopeful that we can mobilize for. Vito and i think everyone should take action. We have a few days. Tell him tell him to veto it because it will send a message to trans young people and even if he does be to it. It's a simple majority override in the state legislature so we are preparing litigation because we want trans people to know that we will defend their ability to access us life. Saving care through any possible tool that we have in our toolbox and your final comments on this day of trans visibility racquel willis. Yes i mean. I think that we have to continue to have a nuance discussion about what visibility mean there are so many great strides that come from it but it also makes our community more of a target and the other thing i wanna say is that it's important for us along with being in contact with lawmakers to make sure. We're supporting the organizers and organizations who are on the front lines and lift every day so donate support their work. And we'll continue to move. Forward racquel willis leading transgender activists We will link to your and chase strangers. Peace in the nation headline visibility alone will not keep transgender youth safe chase stranger deputy director for transgender justice with the aclu next up state so excluding incarcerated people from saving covid nineteen. Vaccines will look at. How a new york judge has ruled this unfair and unjust stay with us report. The theme song took threatening weather. This is democracy now democracy now dot org the quarantine report. I'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. If you'd like to get our daily digest the headlines of the day our stories and also news alerts you can sign up at democracy now dot org or text the word democracy now one word to six six eight six six. Well we end today's show. At how many states have excluded people hold in prisons and jails from lifesaving. Covid nineteen vaccine rollouts. Now in new york. Judge has ruled this as unjust and unfair for people held and one of the largest correctional systems in the country in a strongly worded decision. Monday new york state supreme court justice alison to it ordered the state to immediately vaccinate incarcerated people and said officials quote irrationally distinguish between incarcerated people and people living in every other type of adult congregate facility at great risk to incarcerated people's lives during this pandemic. This comes as people who work in. New york's prisons in jails became eligible to receive the vaccine in january justice to its decision also came as governor cuomo announced only yorkers over the age of thirty canal access. The vaccine she ruled incarcerated people. Even younger than thirty should also be offered the vaccinations now. The lawsuit was filed behalf of two people. Held a new york city's rikers island jail. Twenty four year. Old obama free us and fifty two year old charles holden who lives in a dorm with forty eight of fifty beds filled with the beds inches apart the complaint says he shares quote eating spaces. Toilets sinks showers televisions telephones and recreational spaces of other incarcerated. Men at mealtime eats a communal table surrounded by other incarcerated. People cannot wear masks while they eat in short quote every aspect of daily life is communal. He's not able to practice social distancing unquote currently about ten percent of people held at rikers have covid nineteen new york. Jails about thirty four thousand people only about thirteen hundred prisoners who were senior citizens or have pre existing conditions have already been fully vaccinated for more we go to sophie elisha the executive director of the alliance of families for justice which supports people impacted by the criminal justice system. She's also an attorney who's represented many political prisoners. Some of whom are now in their sixties seventies and eighties and contract covert. So feel we'll will come back to democracy. Now talk about the significance of this court. Ruling to its decision was extremely significant. Families advocates have been begging pleading and trying to prod department of corrections. Our community sue the vision and governor cuomo since the beginning of the pandemic to prioritize the health and safety of incarcerated people and all of our efforts seemed to have fallen on deaf ears. It's unfortunate that it took court intervention in order to make the state do what it's supposed to do and we applaud the courage of to it and issuing this very important decision. I'm wondering if you could talk about. The population and in new york state cleared the prison system of new york. State has had a sharp drop in the number of incarcerated people but also those incarcerated have grown increasingly having the the the The number or percentage of the inmates who are in the most vulnerable population yes. The median age of the prison population. Not only in new york but across the country has increased. that's due in part to harsh sentences have been handed down for decades in our country and in this state and the people who are incarcerated. Who are older are at greater risk and because of their health conditions so we have a virtual ticking time bomb with respect to the health of incarcerated people in older incarcerated people and he took a very long time for new york state to finally even offered testing to the incarcerated population. Any longer to offer vaccinations for the incarcerated population. I wanted to ask you about a bill. That was passed by the new york state. Lawmakers that would end the excessive use of solitary confinement governor. Cuomo has less than twenty four hours to sign the bill and the albany times union editorial of this week called for a halt to this prison torture. Could you talk about the prospects of the governor's signing this bill. We certainly support signing the bill. I think all informed advocates and well meaning people understand that the use of solitary confinement is torture. Shame that it's taken this long for this issue to rise to the level now where it's sitting on the governor's desk whether or not the governor is going to sign. It still remains to be seen. Certainly he ought to advocates gearing up to today to increase the pressure on him to sign. This bill doesn't sign. The bill is basically Signing off on an agreed to torture inside prisons and jails in the state on sufi elijah. I wanted to ask you about two people still in person mumia abu-jamal and the former member of the black panther party. Cindy atta coli. Who's now eighty four years old has been in prison new jersey for nearly half a century. Even though he's been eligible for parole for almost three decades he was denied. Parole again in february. In fact an appeals court said he should be freed. You've supported a coli for decades last year. He contracted covid nineteen and was hospitalized. He reportedly as early stage dementia. You think live long enough to appear before the parole board again and describe what could happen when his case is reviewed later this year by new jersey's supreme court and then talk about mumia abu-jamal and he also contracted Covid nineteen in a pennsylvania. Prison yes thank you cindy outta has been denied parole six times by the new jersey parole board each time. They claim that he's a risk to public safety. He's eighty four years old and in since nineteen seventy nine. He's been held in federal facilities and his last job in the federal facility where he's held now before the pandemic was to teach a course called avoiding criminal thinking which he was tapped to to teach by the bureau of prisons to incarcerated men so that they could avoid recidivism when he when they return to society so clearly he presents no risk in eighty four years old with dementia. It is. it's just unfounded. That they should continue to deny him. His current hit before the parole board which means how old he would have to be before he could return is ninety three and he is waiting now to see how much more time the parole board is going to tack onto that before he should be eligible to return to the parole so basically they are hoping and trying to make sure that he dies in prison. It's important to understand that in new jersey there is a presumption of a right to parole so when someone serves the minimum sentence than they should be eligible for parole unless they are disciplinary record indicates otherwise so the oughta has had a completely disciplined free record for the past twenty seven years so he's been more than eligible for release this fall. The new jersey supreme court will hear the appeal of his denial of his fourth appearance before the parole board and we are hopeful that this will be successful in the courts in new jersey and we just twenty seconds sophia. The latest. i'm amelia buccio. Who cova also contract. Covert nineteen inside the prison and it's a clear. Indication is talked about earlier about the lack of social distancing in the lack of adequate healthcare for incarcerated people an hoping pregnant when the a surprise so feel launch. I want to thank you so much for being with us. Executive director of the alliance of families for justice. That does it for show a very happy birthday to mike. Burke and a fun farewell to libby rainy our producer who have traveled all over from the firefighting prison prisoner prison camps in northern california to the border to those long train rides between washington. Dc at the last minute in new york and wherever a un climate summit is in the world your compassion. Your humor and your intelligence will be missed and fond farewell and best of luck in law. School i mean he goodman with juan gonzalez. Thanks so much for joining us.