Drug War

What We Saw at the Occupy the Justice Dept. Rally in DC!


On Tuesday, April 24 members of the Occupy movement gathered in DC at the Department of Justice to protest "mass incarceration" of black and Latino youth, demand the release of convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal, end the "racist death penalty," and more. Among the celebrities scheduled to address the crowd were actor Danny Glover, rapper Chuck D, activist Angela Davis, and others.

Reason.tv asked protesters what they thought about praise by two of the rally's organizers, ANSWER Coalition and the Workers World Party, of North Korea, Barack Obama's terrible drug war record, and whether Cuba's court and electoral system was more trustworthy than our own.

About 3.30 minutes.

Produced by Anthony L. Fisher. Filmed by Fisher and Joshua Swain. Interviews by Lucy Steigerwald.

Go to Reason.tv for downloadable versions of this video and subscribe to Reason.tv's YouTube channel to receive automatic notification when new material goes live.

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  1. reason has no comment; likewise, nor do I.

    1. Three minutes and 22 seconds of brain-dead fail right there.

      1. actually the guy who said that justice department and police should all spend 24 hours in the lockup had a really insightful comment.

        1. They would gain insight above and beyond that which they get working with criminals all day, every day?

        2. I agree.

    2. “reason has no comment; likewise, nor do I”
      A comment claiming to be no comment!
      Would you be a (lying) lefty?

      1. No, just a wit; and that just barely.

        1. Missed the sarcasm.

  2. Cuban fair elections?

    Wow. That’s some quality delusion right there.

    Glad to know that none of them blame Obama or Holder for not releasing Mumia though, because hey- it’s not his fault!

    1. Fair elections & 90% turnout–because free universal healthcare doesn’t just vote for itself.

      1. Elections? Really? So Castro has been re-elected all this time?

        He must have one helluva campaign manager.

        This whole video is stuck on stupid.

        1. Tman|4.24.12 @ 9:08PM|#


  3. OT: Game of Thrones has really gone downhill.

    1. So you’re actively trying to increase your creepiness level, now. What next? Pictures of your mom?

      1. I was gonna post pics of your’s, but I didn’t wanna take the time to photoshop out all the naked bikers. So instead I found a pre-production still from the upcoming Hunger Games sequel.

        1. And right on cue, pictures of your mom. It’s like I’m psychic or something.

          1. Epi, don’t make me bring the pain.

            1. Why are you posting pictures of Tman?

              1. You’re just jealous because Chuck gave me that sweet chinese fan.

                Talk about the papercuts that bad boy can dish out!

                1. Karate…in SPACE!

                  1. We call it the universal roundhouse.

                  2. Karate is the dane cook of martial arts.

                2. You’re just jealous because Chuck gave me that sweet chinese fan.

                  I love that part. Cause nothing says “ass whoopin in space”, like a paper fan.

        2. That can’t be Epi, I don’t think he’s the type of cross dresser that would fall for a full mulleted bow hunter.

          1. You think wrong.

        3. How long before Hollywood makes the Hunger Games Twilight mashup, like Aliens v. Predator?

          1. I’ve been trying to pitch “The Wedding Terminator” for years.

            1. Wait, is that for The Wedding Singer or The Wedding Planner? Your response will either increase or decrease my giddiness at the possibilities.

  4. That’s the thing. Obama could free Mumia anytime he wished, but he won’t as there is currently no political reason for him to do so.

    By the way, mad props to Lucy for Marlene Dietrich-ing it up.

    1. Obama would lose pretty much every electoral vote in Pennsylvania if he freed Mumia.

      Not gonna happen.

    2. Could he? I thought Mumia was convicted in state court. The President can’t pardon or commute state prisoners. But you know who could have freed Mumia? Former DNC chair Ed Rendell. He was governor for what two terms? Yet, somehow Mumia is always the fault of the Republicans.

      1. Because I’m lazy and uninterested I’ve never read up on this Mumia guy, is there some sort of extraordinary evidence that he didn’t do it? People been harping on about this case forever.

        All I know is that he supposedly killed a cop.

        1. He was found holding a smoking .38 with five missing rounds next to a dead cop with five hot .38 rounds in him that happened to come from that gun.

          It’s the sort of evidence that only stupid people would take to indicate guilt. Smart people would look deeper and see the truth.

          1. What Brutus said.

          2. Jeeze, I just read the wiki page. Seemed pretty open and shut. I thought there’d be some kind of doubt, but damn.

          3. AND he was wearing the accompanying holster to the gun AND his brother who was at the scene never testified on mumia’s behalf and whose sole statement was essentially ‘it wasn’t me’ and…

            google the justice for daniel faulkner site. they have lots of case files, court stuff etc. up on that site (or did years ago when i read it) and the case is very compelling

            there are a lot of questionable murder convictions that happen, but mumia aint one of them

            he is guilty as fuck

        2. He was found shot at the scene of the dead cop who pulled him over at a traffic stop. To call the evidence overwhelming would be an understatement. A lot of people have gone to the chair on less evidence for less heinous crimes.

          1. I thought it was his brother who was pulled over and Mumia saw it from across the street.

            1. Yeah, it was his brother that was pulled over. Mumia decided that was the right time to dish out some justice.

        3. From the brief and admittedly surface inspection of the case I went through a few years ago, he seems pretty guilty.

          His brother, who witnessed the whole thing, never testified in defense of Mumia at the trial and at three post-conviction hearings, which seems odd.

          This doesn’t change the fact that the Philly PD were unbelievably corrupt and managed to botch almost every aspect of the forensics. But the big conspiracy that they were “out to get Mumia” is Occam razored by the fact that the police took him to the hospital to save his life. The level of corruption inherent in that city during that time says that if they really wanted to “get him” he would’ve been “delayed” on his trip to the emergency room.

          Still, the whole case stinks.

          1. Well, we’re talking about a police department that used a fucking helicopter to drop a bomb on a house.

            1. It’s the city that loves ya back!

            2. I was living in Brazil at the time and I recall there being coverage of the bombing even down there. Unbelievably stupid and criminal.

          2. Tman|4.24.12 @ 9:54PM|#
            “From the brief and admittedly surface inspection of the case I went through a few years ago, he seems pretty guilty.
            This doesn’t change the fact that the Philly PD were unbelievably corrupt and managed to botch almost every aspect of the forensics”
            Which pretty much sums up my arguments about why the state has no business taking live.

      2. You’re right, my bad. I think because I remember that his case went to the Supreme Court that it morphed into the U.S. vs. Mumia in my mind.

  5. Oh Lucy, you really need to start cheating on the assignment lotteries. That, or yield to The Jacket; give it the earthly sustenance it demands.

    It must have taken at least a half a bottle of good bourbon to wash the cognitive dissonance, that concentrated, from your mind.

    1. You know that Lucy only drinks wine coolers and Cisco, right?

      1. Cisco will only sully the purified youth that The Jacket seeks. You wouldn’t like it angry.

        Desperate times call for desperate measures.

        1. So you’re saying you drink Cisco. Because that’s what I’m hearing. Though I have to say I always figured you for more of a Night Train guy.

          1. Screw you, Skeezix! I ride the Bird or nothing at all.

            1. Always a good choice. As is the Mad Dog.

              1. It is a good choice, if you can’t get any Ripple.

                1. They haven’t made Ripple in years.

                  1. Which is why it’s hard to find. Q.E.D. bitches!

      2. Epi, you usually have wisdom, but JW knows better my beverage of choice.

  6. Mittens is dominating tonight’s contests and he gave what was essentially an acceptance speech. New York is the only state that has yet to report in.

    As for the video, there are just some people that can’t be reasoned with. We see it in the Cuba apologist lady and the African-Americans that can never admit that Obama has been a dismal failure on the one issue they really care about.

    I also loved Lucy’s tie.

    1. The whole time Cuba Lady was talking, I kept imagining that I was witnessing “She Who Cannot Be Named” in person.

  7. How tough am I? Not only did I watch Mitt Romney’s speech, I also watched Pier Morgan interview Obama’s campaign press secretary AND I just may stay and watch Piers interview Rick Santorum and his wife.

    1. I never watch those things. But judging from the reaction on the internet, it looks like Romney might actually run a real campaign as opposed to McCain. Alf Landon’s corpse would have run a better campaign than McCain.

  8. I love Lucy. They give her all of the shit jobs. But she soldiers on.

    1. We all love her, especially when she tries to eat all the candies off the belt.

      1. We have low standards. Lucy actually comes down from the mountain and talks to the commentators. For that she will always be beloved Reason staffer Lucy Steigerwald.

        1. Wait, have you not been getting those emails from the editors-in-chief? Or was that just me?

  9. I tried to get through the video, but could not. I puked about where the eco-socialist in the orange jacket said….something. An orange suit? Where in hell do you get an orange suit?

    1. Men’s Warehouse runs Hipster Loft.

    2. Jim Carrey had one back when he and the Farrelly Brothers were still funny.

    3. Where in hell do you get an orange suit?

      and you call yo’self suthen? Damn boy…UT.

    4. What a hypocrite. He should be aware what a crime against nature that suit is.

  10. Mumia Abu-Jamal is a cop killer. He should be given a medal.

    1. No. If he shot a cop on a wrong address no knock raid, he would deserve a medal. But he didn’t do that. He shot some cop who pulled him over on a traffic violation. He is an asshole who got what he deserved.

      1. Again John, Mumia wasn’t pulled over, it was his brother. Mumia happened to be across the street with his cab from where his brother was pulled over.

        1. I didn’t realize that. Either way, he doesn’t deserve a medal.

          1. And as I stated above, the giant ? standing in the middle of the whole story is um, why didn’t his brother -who witnessed the whole damn thing- testify on his behalf?

            Dumb vigilante with an axe to grind against cops makes very dumb decision. Story at 11.

            1. Maybe his brother did it and he is staying in prison for him.

              1. I suppose it’s possible considering the complete disaster that was the forensics (cops moved stuff around at the scene which even back then never happened). But again, if this were true, imagine the clusterfuck brother could cause by coming out now, well past the statute of limitations and screaming “it was me! You framed the wrong man!”.

                He hasn’t so I don’t think he did it.

                1. No statute of limitations on murder. If the brother ever gets a terminal disease however..

                  1. Maybe, but the unholy clusterfuck that would result from his confession seems like a wasted opportunity at this point.

              2. Maybe his brother did it and he is staying in prison for him.

                Of course, his junkie brother killed the cop. But that makes Mumia an accessory after the fact, or at the very least, an uncooperative witness. Which is why they will never actually execute Mumia. All he has to do is drop the dime on his brother. They would probably amend his charge, give him time served, and release him. But he has to give up his brother. Lynn Abraham basically said as much several years ago.

                Not that I agree with the City’s tactics.

                And yes, I am old enough to know what a Members Only jacket is, no I never owned one (are you kidding?), and I live in the Philadelphia area, rho. I’ve also never owned a pair of designer jeans.

          2. The Mumia case happened in the early 1980s.

            If you’ve never worn a Member’s Only jacket unironically, your knowledge of the case is largely based on myth and legend.

            1. I am old enough to remember it. Not sure if I ever owned a members only jacket. But I could have.

              1. You would remember the Jacket, if you owned one.

                1. I am old enough to have owned one. And that is enough.

                  1. You weren’t sure, and therefore your memories are suspect.

                    I know this to be true, because my hair is a bird.

      2. No, John, he hasn’t gotten what he deserves. A quick execution was what he deserved and that ship has sailed.

  11. Oh, Lucy, once again, you’re doing god’s work in some of the toughest protests in America.

    1. If by “tough” you mean “addled.”

  12. This video actually started out hopefully when the people were talking about our ridiculous incarceration rates, but sadly, it devolved to nonsense once they started interviewing idiots about socialism and dictatorships.

    1. But that woman has been to Cuba, so she must be right.

      1. I remember when I first came to Washington, having lived a sheltered life, I had never met anyone who actually claimed Cuba was a nice place. I met these clowns handing out pamphlets at GW who claimed just that. I had previously worked trying to get Cuban defectors, who had committed crimes but couldn’t be sent back to Cuba, out of ICE detention. I had read their files which included their criminal records in Cuba. Many of the “crimes” were things like “speaking about forming a union” or “having an unauthorized contact with a foreigner” and all sorts of stuff right out of Orwell. So I confront these clowns with my experience. And they refused to believe any of it. There was no way Cuba had crimes like that no matter what I saw. It was my first experience with real nuclear grade stupidity.

        1. “It was my first experience with real nuclear grade stupidity.”
          But not your last……

          1. He is still alive, isn’t he?

  13. This video is further proof that we will never reach Peak Retard.

    1. I thought you were proof of that, sage.

      1. Look, just because you’re Peak Guido, doesn’t mean you get to lord it over us.

        1. Whatever, Peak Geek.

      2. NO. I’m proof that we have reached Peak Awesome and will be on the decline once I’m in the ground.

        1. this video indicates the decline has long since started, despite your noble efforts to the contrary. Slacker.

          1. Obviously he’s undead. The filthy abomination.

  14. I’m protesting occupying the Justice (sic) Dept because I just learned they’ve been forgiving the student loans of lawyers they hire. This is ostensibly to help with recruiting. Because there’s such a dearth of lawyers available that we need signing bonuses and shit to attract them. Not. And we need to incent (sic) them by forgiven their student loans, too, also.

    Sons of bitches MUST pay….


    1. And it is not exactly like DOJ hires on merit. Some of the best lawyers I know couldn’t get an interview there. And I have met some real idiots who work there. It is a political cesspool.

      1. Starting with the Head Idiot, Esquire, Eric “Wouldn’t Hire Him to Represent Me for…Signing My Performance Review” Holder. What a waste of law school.

        1. What a slimy prick. If I could wish ill to any one person, it would be for him to go to prison.

  15. Also, these motherfuckers in the video need a piping hot mug of Shut The Fuck Up. Each.

    1. This is what 20+ years of self esteem education gets you.

      1. The more you suffer, the more it shows you really care.

  16. I heard about an incarcerated Latino youth named Zimmerman. Sounds like the guy is really getting railroaded. These people should help him out.

    1. You forget. Zimmerman is a White Hispanic, and Whitey be the root of all dat be evil.

  17. wow….they went full stupid.

  18. So, 9-1-1 still a joke?

  19. What we read about at Occupy Wells Fargo:

    “The Rev. Gloria Del Castillo of San Francisco said she was joining the protest not just as a religious leader, but as someone going through a foreclosure herself.
    “After banking with Wells Fargo for decades and having a great credit score, I asked them for a loan modification so I could stay in my home,” she said. “Wells Fargo denied it.”
    OK, but a quick search turns up:
    “At first, the mortgage for my new home was held jointly by Wells Fargo and one other bank. The initial monthly payments were well within my means. What no one told me was that after two years, my monthly mortgage payments would jump by 50%.”
    Well, that’s correct. No one said they “would” increase by that amount, but I’ll bet all the disclosure forms in the file say they “could”. The term “adjustable” has a meaning.

    1. Del Castillo. That sounds white Hispanic. Needs more gievance.

  20. We can’t have a free society until humans are enslaved to mother gaia, women rule the earth, and free markets are abolished. Awesome.

    1. Well duh. It’s not FATHER Earth, you know!

  21. mumia abu jamal is so obviously guilty it’s ridiculous. years ago, the DA put tons of files from that case up on the web, and the justice for daniel faulkner site still has a bunch, and the courtroom evidence, as well as the fact pattern is so overwhelmingly compelling.

    it’s a good litmus test for ideology over REASON!

  22. I completely understand that reaction, as the discrimination factor here is very sensible. After all we are very familiar with the fact that the efficiency of Cuba’s court system has been rather questionable matter. I hope the case will be handled with due respect and seriousness.
    Vacation Homes West Virginia

  23. Thanks Lucy, great job letting teh stupid speak for itself.

  24. I want to know how many outtakes resulted from Lucy cracking up. I really don’t see how she could keep a straight face through some of those interviews. Drinking would make it worse.

    1. My face may have twitched a bit while talking to Ms. Cuba fan. That’s all.

  25. Dude is like totally rocking it. WOw.


  26. Great job, Lucy.

    It’s hard to just stand there and look respectful in the face of all that stupid.

    But that is all you have to do to shine the light.

  27. Whoa!!!

    The dude in the orange suit and round glasses… and the Cuba fair elections lady. One thing this country has no shortage of is useful idiots. Those 2 are poster children for useful idiot.

  28. And Aunt Jemima… Shouldn’t she be on the porch stewin up a big old pot of underwear for whitey instead of out shillin for Obama?

    Did that sound racist?

    1. Nope.

      Not at all, Massa, not at all.

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