Monument Protection Task Force; Trump Veto Threat: Protest Wrap
(Bloomberg) -- A special task force has been created to protect historic monuments, memorials, statues and federal facilities following President Donald Trump’s executive order last week, acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad F. Wolf said in a statement. With the July 4th holiday approaching, teams will be deployed across the country to respond to potential threats to facilities and property, he said. Trump tweeted this morning, saying, “My Executive Order to protect Monuments, Statues etc., IS IN FULL FORCE AND EFFECT. In excess of a 10 year prison term.”
Separately, the president has threatened to veto the entire defense bill if it contains a provision that would strip the names of Confederate generals from U.S. military bases. An amendment in the bill sponsored by Senator Elizabeth Warren would establish a commission that would put in place a plan for the removal of the names within three years. A House bill is expected to go further than the Senate’s, requiring such names to be changed within a year.
Trump also said he may get rid of a fair-housing rule originally designed to desegregate neighborhoods, which some say in practice simply means building more housing. His administration has been trying to revise an Obama-era regulation on how to enforce the Civil Rights-era law; opponents say it’s an effort to weaken the rules.
Joe Biden’s campaign asked Facebook for assurances that it’s treating seriously what it called Trump’s “hateful content” and “disinformation.” Three Senate Democrats sent a letter to CEO Mark Zuckerberg demanding answers by July 10 on whether and how the company will enforce its policies against hate speech and white supremacy and who at the company is responsible for it.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council agreed to an $88 billion budget on the final day of the city’s fiscal year, cutting about $1 billion from the NYPD. But that wasn’t enough to satisfy demands for change in police practices and spending: Protesters gathered outside City Hall said the cuts didn’t all come from the department’s $5.9 billion operating budget and didn’t reduce its 36,000-officer headcount enough.
Efforts by Congress to limit the types of military equipment the Defense Department can transfer to law enforcement departments is unlikely to touch an even bigger source of advanced weapons accessible to civilian police. Two Homeland Security initiatives established in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks have given state and local law enforcement agencies billions to buy equipment without the rules and restrictions of the Defense Department program.
Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves signed a bill that would change the state’s flag, removing the Confederate battle emblem after 126 years. Mississippi was the last state with the symbol on its flag, now voided amid the turmoil, anger and reform set off by George Floyd’s death. Reeves, a Republican, argued against taking further anti-Confederate steps like removing statues of Civil War leaders from the South. The flag was pulled down from a display at the U.S. Capitol and replaced with a flag with the state’s seal on it.
Adidas AG’s human resources chief resigned following criticism from Black employees who said the German sportswear giant has done too little to promote diversity.
A judge in Georgia granted bond for the former police officer charged in the killing of Rayshard Brooks in a Wendy’s parking lot June 12, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. The city of Aurora, Colorado, has suspended three officers pending an investigation over photos taken at a memorial for Elijah McClain, local TV station CBS4 reports. The photos reportedly involve officers reenacting the restraint that preceded McClain’s death.
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