Symphonic Love
theblackoaksyndicate:

lakotapeopleslawproject:

Become a member at http://lakota.cc/1kvf8ka. This is just an example of the corruption that South Dakota DSS perpetuates. Learn more about the Mette Case at http://lakotalaw.org/special-reports/the-mette-affair. There are many stories like this, which is why we are assisting the Lakota tribes to create their own foster care system. Free the Mette Children! The South Dakota Dept. of Social Services placed 7 Lakota foster children into foster care with a non-Native, known molester. In what appears to be a common situation, the state of South Dakota placed 7 Lakota children into a foster family with a known molester, Richard Mette, and his enabling wife, Wendy Mette, from 2000 to 2013. The DSS knew of the accusations against Mr. Mette, but still placed Lakota foster children with him. The state ignored MULTIPLE complaints of sexual and physical abuse, and pleas for help from the children. 1. In 2001, the state ignored the foster boys’ complaints of molestation, and simply made the Mette adoptive parents sign a contract pledging to discontinue any illegal behavior. 2. In 2007, one of the girls told the police how she was sexually molested by Mr. Mette. She reported that Mrs. Mette knew about the molestations. Again, the DSS defended the Mette foster parents, and allowed the children to stay in the home. 3. Afterwards, Kelly, the older foster sister who had aged out of the Mette foster family, was getting reports from her younger siblings that the sexual and physical abuse was increasing and intensifying. She reported this to the South Dakota DSS, who ignored it and said they did not believe the children. Yankton Doctor sees bruises and reports abuse. In October 2010, the only boy among the Mette foster siblings at that time went to see a doctor at the Human Services Center in Yankton, S.D. The child, covered with bruises, disclosed abuse occurring in his adoptive home. He also detailed how Richard Mette, the adoptive father, was molesting the girls. The doctor contacted the authorities at once.  Brandon Taliaferro, the Assistant State’s Attorney responsible for criminal child abuse cases in Brown County, immediately began an investigation. The police search the Mette house and find more evidence of sexual abuse, including enough pornography to “pack a store”, including “family incest” porn. The children revealed they had been subjected to physical abuse, sexual molestation and threats of being beaten if they did not comply with the molestation or if they told anyone. In addition, the children explained that they were often given a choice between “b***jobs or beatings”. The children say they were forced to watch incest porn with Mr. Mette. The children were told that the porn, with titles like “Family Heat”, is how families are supposed to act.  The disgusted police charged Mr. Mette with 23 counts of child rape and incest, and Mrs. Mette with 11 counts of physical abuse and enabling. The State prosecutor, however, first attempted to drop all charges, and charged sexual predator Mr. Mette with only one count of “spanking”. When the State was not allowed to do this, they decided to charge Mr. Mette with only one count of rape of a child under 10. The other 22 charges of aggravated child rape and incest were dropped. The State then dropped all charges against Mrs. Mette, who the children said knew about and enabled the abuse. Children are now back with Mrs. Mette, where they can’t sue the State DSS. As the state’s DCI agent explained, South Dakota fears that they will face an expensive lawsuit by the seven Lakota foster children whose complaints of sexual abuse were ignored by the state for 10 years. Since they are now minors in the custody of Wendy Mette, the person who enabled the abuse, they cannot sue the state without her permission and support. What can we do?  Please call Tony West, the Associate Attorney General of the United States, and let him know that the federal Department of Justice needs to Free the Mette Children immediately!  (202) 514-9500 Learn more: www.lakotalaw.org/special-reports/the-mette-affair

SIGNAL. FUCKING. BOOST.

theblackoaksyndicate:

lakotapeopleslawproject:

Become a member at http://lakota.cc/1kvf8ka. This is just an example of the corruption that South Dakota DSS perpetuates. Learn more about the Mette Case at http://lakotalaw.org/special-reports/the-mette-affair. There are many stories like this, which is why we are assisting the Lakota tribes to create their own foster care system.

Free the Mette Children!

The South Dakota Dept. of Social Services placed 7 Lakota foster
children into foster care with a non-Native, known molester.

In what appears to be a common situation, the state of South Dakota placed 7 Lakota children into a foster family with a known molester, Richard Mette, and his enabling wife, Wendy Mette, from 2000 to 2013. The DSS knew of the accusations against Mr. Mette, but still placed Lakota foster children with him.

The state ignored MULTIPLE complaints of sexual and physical
abuse, and pleas for help from the children.

1. In 2001, the state ignored the foster boys’ complaints of molestation, and simply made the Mette adoptive parents sign a contract pledging to discontinue any illegal behavior.

2. In 2007, one of the girls told the police how she was sexually molested by Mr. Mette. She reported that Mrs. Mette knew about the molestations. Again, the DSS defended the Mette foster parents, and allowed the children to stay in the home.

3. Afterwards, Kelly, the older foster sister who had aged out of the Mette foster family, was getting reports from her younger siblings that the sexual and physical abuse was increasing and intensifying. She reported this to the South Dakota DSS, who ignored it and said they did not believe the children.

Yankton Doctor sees bruises and reports abuse. In October 2010, the only boy among the Mette foster siblings at that time went to see a doctor at the Human Services Center in Yankton, S.D. The child, covered with bruises, disclosed abuse occurring in his adoptive home. He also detailed how Richard Mette, the adoptive father, was molesting the girls. The doctor contacted the authorities at once.

Brandon Taliaferro, the Assistant State’s Attorney responsible for criminal child abuse cases in Brown County, immediately began an investigation.

The police search the Mette house and find more evidence of sexual abuse, including enough pornography to “pack a store”, including “family incest” porn.

The children revealed they had been subjected to physical abuse, sexual molestation and threats of being beaten if they did not comply with the molestation or if they told anyone. In addition, the children explained that they were often given a choice between “b***jobs or beatings”.

The children say they were forced to watch incest porn with Mr. Mette. The children were told that the porn, with titles like “Family Heat”, is how families are supposed to act.

The disgusted police charged Mr. Mette with 23 counts of child rape and incest, and Mrs. Mette with 11 counts of physical abuse and enabling.

The State prosecutor, however, first attempted to drop all charges, and charged sexual predator Mr. Mette with only one count of “spanking”.

When the State was not allowed to do this, they decided to charge Mr. Mette with only one count of rape of a child under 10. The other 22 charges of aggravated child rape and incest were
dropped.

The State then dropped all charges against Mrs. Mette, who the children said knew about and enabled the abuse.

Children are now back with Mrs. Mette, where they can’t sue the State DSS. As the state’s DCI agent explained, South Dakota fears that they will face an expensive lawsuit by the seven Lakota foster children whose complaints of sexual abuse were ignored by the state
for 10 years. Since they are now minors in the custody of Wendy Mette, the person who enabled the abuse, they cannot sue the state without her permission and support.

What can we do?

Please call Tony West, the Associate Attorney General of the United States, and let him know that the federal Department of Justice needs to Free the Mette Children immediately!
(202) 514-9500

Learn more: www.lakotalaw.org/special-reports/the-mette-affair

SIGNAL. FUCKING. BOOST.

atane:

Pictured above is 8 year veteran NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo. He is the Staten Island police officer that choked Eric Garner on the street.
Now I know some of you fine white folks and a few non-Black POC (I see y’all too) are saying that this was an isolated incident. I guess they skipped the beginning of the video where Eric Garner said he was tired of the police harassing him all the time and they should leave him alone. That’s the selective hearing people in denial tend to have. Someone also told me to “stop playing the race card”. Another said that Eric Garner died because he was heavy. Being choked from behind, forcibly taken to the ground, having 5 officers pounce on top of you making you unable to breathe and having your head slammed on the concrete sidewalk as you plead that you can’t breathe had nothing to do with it all. They will overlook all that. If there is one thing I know, it’s that no matter how clear cut something is, a white person somewhere will excuse and rationalize it if the victim is Black.
Back to officer Daniel Pantaleo. The NY Daily News is now reporting that he has a history of complaints from Black folks (big surprise).
Via the NY Daily News

Pantaleo has been accused of false arrest and violating police procedures in two lawsuits, court records show. In one, two African-American plaintiffs won $15,000 apiece after claiming they’d been falsely arrested on Staten Island in 2012 and forced to publicly strip so cops could search them. All charges against them were dropped.
Plaintiff Darren Collins, 46, told The News on Friday night he was too frightened to talk.
“I’m scared of what (the cops) may do to me … I was harassed” after the arrest, he said.
The other lawsuit, filed in Brooklyn in February, alleged Pantaleo trumped up charges to arrest the plaintiff, who was wrongly jailed for a day.

This is what they do. That forced stripping thing is very common. They even did it to a 14 year old Black boy. They saw him throwing eggs on halloween, so what did they do? They took him in their patrol car and drove him out to an isolated marsh area on the Island, then told him to strip and proceeded to beat him up to their satisfaction and then abandoned him naked out there. The kid’s name is Rayshawn Moreno. You can read about his case here.
Another thing they love to do when patting down Black men is grabbing and squeezing your privates. I want people to understand that it’s not isolated and it’s not out of the blue. All this talk about the nice police officers you know is meaningless when the system they serve targets Black people. What good is individual niceness when systemic brutality is the rule? When racist policies like stop and frisk were enacted, will officer friendly prevent that reality or will he follow the command? Their colleagues are setting people up, bringing up trumped up charges, dishing out beatings, harassment etc. Where is officer friendly taking a stand against all this? White people never consider that officer friendly is often a nightmare in other communities. The violation of rights that will never happen in white communities is standard operating procedure by the NYPD in Black communities.
In addition, most victims won’t sue or file reports because they’ve come to expect it and are sadly used to ill treatment by the police. Are they supposed to file a report against the police with the police? Does that make sense to you? It’s the police harassing them. Some of the victims might also have rap sheets. No one is going to listen to a Black person with a record about police brutality. The victims always end up being crucified, not their attackers. 
Going beyond that, some will even think they deserve the abuse. We live in a society that perversely relishes the ill treatment of felons. Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona is seen as a hero by white conservatives, and not the depraved and sadistic man he is. He keeps being voted in because the white conservative populace he serves is equally depraved and sadistic. In the US, prison rape is seen as something to laugh about. “Don’t drop the soap” or “Say hi to Bubba” is what people say with a smile on their face, as if this is a joking matter. People wish for the sexual violation and abuse of prisoners. They laugh about prisoners being raped, as if being sexually violated is part of the punishment in a prison sentence. Being in prison is the punishment. Seemingly well adjusted people will joke about it.
This is a mentality we as a society have to exorcise. A good start is reading Michelle Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow”. We need to recognize everyone’s humanity. Only a twisted and depraved person enjoys someone being abused and violated, especially when that person is already in prison!
The humanity of Black life is so devalued that a Black man dying has to be captured on video before society at large momentarily pays attention, and even then the excuses will still come. If Eric Garner’s last moments weren’t captured on video, ask yourselves if this case would have received the same level of attention it did. Just ponder it. Let us also note that Mr. Garner has been in the system before (mostly minor offenses for weed and untaxed cigarettes). If there was no video, the NYPD would have used that to paint a negative picture of him, and people would use that preconceived and prejudiced picture to think that he “deserved it” and probably did something wrong, when it’s clear from the video that he did not. This is anti-Blackness and the criminality that is equated with Blackness. This type of behavior exhibited by the NYPD towards Eric Garner does not happen in white society. It is reserved for Black people.
Now officer Pantaleo has been stripped of his weapon and badge and has been put on modified duty (whatever that means). Don’t take that as some sort of victory. That is just how it goes. At most Pantaleo will lose his job and maybe even a civil suit from Eric Garner’s family, but he’s probably not going to prison for this. They will find a way for him not to be culpable. The wheels of his exoneration are already in motion. See via Gothamist below. 

It’s unclear whether Pantaleo will be criminally charged, and Eugene O’Donnell, professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, told the Post, “If you’re the defense counsel in this case, this is very good news, because it’s consistent with what appears to be the case — that they didn’t mean to hurt him” 
However, the News reports, “Another source said the likely cause of death will be a heart attack, although other actions — including the illegal takedown of Garner — ‘will probably go down as contributing factors.’”
Chokeholds are prohibited by the NYPD. Another video shows that Garner was left handcuffed for minutes while apparently not breathing.

All this is standard operating procedure for them. Not just the NYPD, but for police across the US. BART police officer Johannes Mehserle who shot a handcuffed Oscar Grant in the back as he lay on the ground only served 11 months in prison for the murder.

atane:

Pictured above is 8 year veteran NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo. He is the Staten Island police officer that choked Eric Garner on the street.

Now I know some of you fine white folks and a few non-Black POC (I see y’all too) are saying that this was an isolated incident. I guess they skipped the beginning of the video where Eric Garner said he was tired of the police harassing him all the time and they should leave him alone. That’s the selective hearing people in denial tend to have. Someone also told me to “stop playing the race card”. Another said that Eric Garner died because he was heavy. Being choked from behind, forcibly taken to the ground, having 5 officers pounce on top of you making you unable to breathe and having your head slammed on the concrete sidewalk as you plead that you can’t breathe had nothing to do with it all. They will overlook all that. If there is one thing I know, it’s that no matter how clear cut something is, a white person somewhere will excuse and rationalize it if the victim is Black.

Back to officer Daniel Pantaleo. The NY Daily News is now reporting that he has a history of complaints from Black folks (big surprise).

Via the NY Daily News

Pantaleo has been accused of false arrest and violating police procedures in two lawsuits, court records show. In one, two African-American plaintiffs won $15,000 apiece after claiming they’d been falsely arrested on Staten Island in 2012 and forced to publicly strip so cops could search them. All charges against them were dropped.

Plaintiff Darren Collins, 46, told The News on Friday night he was too frightened to talk.

“I’m scared of what (the cops) may do to me … I was harassed” after the arrest, he said.

The other lawsuit, filed in Brooklyn in February, alleged Pantaleo trumped up charges to arrest the plaintiff, who was wrongly jailed for a day.

This is what they do. That forced stripping thing is very common. They even did it to a 14 year old Black boy. They saw him throwing eggs on halloween, so what did they do? They took him in their patrol car and drove him out to an isolated marsh area on the Island, then told him to strip and proceeded to beat him up to their satisfaction and then abandoned him naked out there. The kid’s name is Rayshawn Moreno. You can read about his case here.

Another thing they love to do when patting down Black men is grabbing and squeezing your privates. I want people to understand that it’s not isolated and it’s not out of the blue. All this talk about the nice police officers you know is meaningless when the system they serve targets Black people. What good is individual niceness when systemic brutality is the rule? When racist policies like stop and frisk were enacted, will officer friendly prevent that reality or will he follow the command? Their colleagues are setting people up, bringing up trumped up charges, dishing out beatings, harassment etc. Where is officer friendly taking a stand against all this? White people never consider that officer friendly is often a nightmare in other communities. The violation of rights that will never happen in white communities is standard operating procedure by the NYPD in Black communities.

In addition, most victims won’t sue or file reports because they’ve come to expect it and are sadly used to ill treatment by the police. Are they supposed to file a report against the police with the police? Does that make sense to you? It’s the police harassing them. Some of the victims might also have rap sheets. No one is going to listen to a Black person with a record about police brutality. The victims always end up being crucified, not their attackers. 

Going beyond that, some will even think they deserve the abuse. We live in a society that perversely relishes the ill treatment of felons. Sheriff Joe Arpaio in Arizona is seen as a hero by white conservatives, and not the depraved and sadistic man he is. He keeps being voted in because the white conservative populace he serves is equally depraved and sadistic. In the US, prison rape is seen as something to laugh about. “Don’t drop the soap” or “Say hi to Bubba” is what people say with a smile on their face, as if this is a joking matter. People wish for the sexual violation and abuse of prisoners. They laugh about prisoners being raped, as if being sexually violated is part of the punishment in a prison sentence. Being in prison is the punishment. Seemingly well adjusted people will joke about it.

This is a mentality we as a society have to exorcise. A good start is reading Michelle Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow”. We need to recognize everyone’s humanity. Only a twisted and depraved person enjoys someone being abused and violated, especially when that person is already in prison!

The humanity of Black life is so devalued that a Black man dying has to be captured on video before society at large momentarily pays attention, and even then the excuses will still come. If Eric Garner’s last moments weren’t captured on video, ask yourselves if this case would have received the same level of attention it did. Just ponder it. Let us also note that Mr. Garner has been in the system before (mostly minor offenses for weed and untaxed cigarettes). If there was no video, the NYPD would have used that to paint a negative picture of him, and people would use that preconceived and prejudiced picture to think that he “deserved it” and probably did something wrong, when it’s clear from the video that he did not. This is anti-Blackness and the criminality that is equated with Blackness. This type of behavior exhibited by the NYPD towards Eric Garner does not happen in white society. It is reserved for Black people.

Now officer Pantaleo has been stripped of his weapon and badge and has been put on modified duty (whatever that means). Don’t take that as some sort of victory. That is just how it goes. At most Pantaleo will lose his job and maybe even a civil suit from Eric Garner’s family, but he’s probably not going to prison for this. They will find a way for him not to be culpable. The wheels of his exoneration are already in motion. See via Gothamist below. 

It’s unclear whether Pantaleo will be criminally charged, and Eugene O’Donnell, professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, told the Post, “If you’re the defense counsel in this case, this is very good news, because it’s consistent with what appears to be the case — that they didn’t mean to hurt him” 

However, the News reports, “Another source said the likely cause of death will be a heart attack, although other actions — including the illegal takedown of Garner — ‘will probably go down as contributing factors.’”

Chokeholds are prohibited by the NYPD. Another video shows that Garner was left handcuffed for minutes while apparently not breathing.

All this is standard operating procedure for them. Not just the NYPD, but for police across the US. BART police officer Johannes Mehserle who shot a handcuffed Oscar Grant in the back as he lay on the ground only served 11 months in prison for the murder.

surprise surprise.

sasha-thumper:

yarrahs-life:

dynastylnoire:

ourafrica:

I’m so upset, angry and just completely disgusted about this story!


Matthew Durham, 19, allegedly confessed to sexually assaulting several children at an orphanage in Kenya, police said. (Credit: KFOR)

An Edmond teenager faces a possible life in prison sentence after authorities say they learned about shocking crimes he allegedly committed on an African mission trip.

The suspect was volunteering at a Kenyan children’s home when he allegedly raped and molested a number of young children.

According to court records, 19-year-old Matthew Durham confessed to raping several young girls, forcing some boys to perform oral sex on him and even making other kids watch.

“This is a young man in our community that made choices to exploit children in an orphanage,” said United States Attorney Sanford Coats. “It’s a true tragedy all the way around.”

The 19-year-old suspect traveled overseas with a group called Upendo.

Upendo is an organization that assists neglected Kenyan kids by providing food, housing, clothes and religion.

While Durham volunteered to travel overseas several times over the last two years, on his last visit, the criminal complaint alleges, “Durham requested to stay at the children’s home in an ‘overflow bunk’ rather than at an offsite facility.”

During that visit, several alleged victims claimed Durham “often touched them in a sexual manner or told them to touch themselves while he watched.”

Once confronted, Durham allegedly came clean.

“A caretaker at the orphanage noticed something wasn’t right and confronted Mr. Durham. He admitted to some of the acts,” said Coats.

The affidavit continues, “The victims are believed to be both boys and girls between the ages of four and nine, at least one of whom is HIV positive.”

Prosecutors say while the alleged sex crimes were committed overseas, Durham can be held accountable for the crimes in Oklahoma.

Durham is being held without bond.

PUT HIM UNDER THE JAIL

Tie his hand and feet with 78 heavy duty zip-ties and drop his ass off near a lion pride and put zebra blood on his dick. From the heart. I mean it.

Oh my God. 

dynastylnoire:

hikergirl:

Here is the link to the City Lab article and the link to the actual website, Turn On Detroit’s Water.
h/t to amomenttothink for retweeting this.

boooooooooooooooooost

dynastylnoire:

hikergirl:

Here is the link to the City Lab article and the link to the actual website, Turn On Detroit’s Water.

h/t to amomenttothink for retweeting this.

boooooooooooooooooost

glaad:

Today, President Obama signed an executive order that prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity against federal workers and contractors.

glaad:

Today, President Obama signed an executive order that prohibits employment discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity against federal workers and contractors.

magicalzonbi:

note-a-bear:

the-goddamazon:

angelica-aswald:

thepeoplesrecord:

Florida city police department embedded with KKK members
July 21, 2014

Ann Hunnewell and her central Florida police officer husband knelt in the living room of a fellow officer’s home, with pillow cases as makeshift hoods over their heads. A few words were spoken and they, along with a half-dozen others, were initiated into the local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan, she says.

Last week, that initiation ceremony, which took place five years ago, stunned residents of the small town of Fruitland Park, who found out an investigative report linked two city officers with the secret hate society that once was violently active in the area. Ann Hunnewell’s ex-husband, George Hunnewell, was fired, and deputy chief David Borst resigned from the 13-member Fruitland Park Police Department. Borst has denied being a member.

James Elkins, a third officer who Ann Hunnewell says recruited her and her husband, resigned in 2010 after his Klan ties became public.

Read More

Are we even surprised? 

Florida continues to be a trash ass state.

More news at 11.

but let’s not pretend as if this is isolated to FL or the South, though.

Right?

thepeoplesrecord:

Hospital must pay out 190 Million USD to the 8,000 women who were secretly videotaped by gynecologist for his personal videosJuly 21, 2014
A major U.S. medical institution has agreed to pay $190 million to more than 8,000 women (that’s less than $23,750 each) who were secretly photographed and videotaped by a gynecologist as he examined them at the hospital.
Monday’s settlement covers claims Dr. Nikita Levy recorded images of the women for several years with a pen-like camera he wore around his neck as he gave them pelvic exams at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He was fired by the hospital in February 2013 after a female colleague spotted the camera and alerted officials of her suspicions.
Police discovered about 1,200 videos and 140 images at his home, but concluded there was no evidence he shared the material with others. Levy committed suicide 10 days after his firing.
A lawyer for the women said they “were brutalized” by the doctor’s conduct, which left some dysfunctional in their personal and professional lives.
Source

thepeoplesrecord:

Hospital must pay out 190 Million USD to the 8,000 women who were secretly videotaped by gynecologist for his personal videos
July 21, 2014

A major U.S. medical institution has agreed to pay $190 million to more than 8,000 women (that’s less than $23,750 each) who were secretly photographed and videotaped by a gynecologist as he examined them at the hospital.

Monday’s settlement covers claims Dr. Nikita Levy recorded images of the women for several years with a pen-like camera he wore around his neck as he gave them pelvic exams at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. He was fired by the hospital in February 2013 after a female colleague spotted the camera and alerted officials of her suspicions.

Police discovered about 1,200 videos and 140 images at his home, but concluded there was no evidence he shared the material with others. Levy committed suicide 10 days after his firing.

A lawyer for the women said they “were brutalized” by the doctor’s conduct, which left some dysfunctional in their personal and professional lives.

Source

thepoliticalfreakshow:

AIDS researchers, activists and advocates en route to the 20th International AIDS conference in Melbourne, Australia are among those believed to have perished on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was shot down over Ukraine on Thursday.

The exact number of people who were headed to the conference is still unknown, but various AIDS organizations from around the globe began to eulogize the lives that were lost shortly after the crash was confirmed.

Scientist Joep Lange of the Netherlands, who has researched the AIDS virus almost since its discovery, was among the first identified as a passenger on the flight, as was his colleague and partner Jacqueline van Tongeren, who was head of communications at Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development, reports the Associated Press.

World Health Organization spokesman Glenn Thomas is also among the dead, confirmed WHO, as well as three Dutch AIDS activists and advocates, reports the Washington Post. They are Lucie van Mens, Martine de Schutter of Bridging the Gaps, and Pim de Kuijer of Stop AIDS Now.

An estimated 35.3 million people around the world are living with HIV/AIDS. The deaths of these AIDS researchers and activists is a huge loss to the international AIDS community and the world at large, as they broke new ground in terms of medical treatment for patients, led public health and policy efforts and worked to de-stigmatize the disease.

Dr. Peter Singer, CEO of the global health organization Grand Challenges Canada, put it best in this tweet:



Joep Lange, a leader in the field

joep lange

"Joep Lange was intimately involved in the design and implementation of several studies of anti-HIV drugs," Dr. Bruce Walker of the Ragon Institute told HuffPost. "Those studies have created the knowledge we have today that’s keeping patients alive." At the time of his death, Lange had published over 350 studies.

Lange refused to give up on HIV/AIDS patients.
When expensive antiretroviral drugs first came on the market, it became clear that not all HIV/AIDS patients would be able to afford the life-improving drugs. Langefought for global drug access, especially for the world’s poorest patients. His actions raised the bar in terms of what could be done for the millions who were acquiring AIDS around the world, and they set off a wave of global initiatives that turned out to vindicate his stance on access for all.

He safeguarded the next generation.
Without intervention, HIV/AIDS can be transmitted from mother to baby in utero or via breastmilk. Lange pioneered research on simple and affordable treatments to prevent mom-to-baby transmission, especially crucial in countries where formula milk is too expensive for most families. Here’s just one example of his research: In 2003 he came up with a method for dosing babies with anti-retroviral drugs for the first few months of their lives so that they could continue to breastfeed.

He recognized HIV/AIDS as a global problem
Lange was passionate about confronting the disease head-on, and he knew that it would require an international effort. During his career, he served as chief of clinical research and drug development at the Global Programme on AIDS at the World Health Organization in Geneva, presided over the International AIDS Society and founded PharmAccess Foundation, a health care access organization in Africa.

Another of his many global campaigns was HIVNAT, an HIV research center in Bangkok that involved researchers from Netherlands, Australia and Thailand was among the first of its kind in a developing nation. Its aim was to prevent HIV/AIDS from gaining a stronghold in Asia. Professor David A. Cooper of UNSW Australia co-founded HIVNAT with Lange, and he released this statement through his university:

“Joep had an absolute commitment to HIV treatment and care in Asia and Africa,” Professor Cooper said. “The joy in collaborating with Joep was that he would always bring a fresh view, a unique take on things, and he never accepted that something was impossible to achieve. Our joint work in Bangkok, the HIVNAT centre, will stand as his legacy.”



Pim de Kuijer, an advocate for women’s and gay rights

At the time of his death, Pim de Kuijer was a lobbyist at STOP AIDS NOW!, a Dutch organization aimed at stopping the spread of AIDS in developing countries. According to the organization’s website, de Kuijer’s department lobbies Dutch and European governments to develop an international, comprehensive and sustainable response to AIDS.

Aside from his work in support of HIV/AIDS research, de Kuijer worked as an election observer in Kosovo, Egypt and Ukraine, his brother Paul de Kuijer told the New York Times.

“He was an outspoken advocate on human rights, especially the position of women in society and position of gays in society,” his brother added.




Lucie van Mens, a champion for the female condom

In a field that prioritized male condoms for the prevention of HIV/AIDS transmission, Lucie van Mens championed the female condom. At the time of her death, she was a Director of Program Development and Support for the Female Health Company, a female condom manufacturer based in Chicago.

She started researching HIV/AIDS and STIs back in 1995, according to a press release. Van Mens also worked as a coordinator for Universal Access to Female Condoms, a partnership that included Oxfam Novib, Rutgers WPF and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as the organization STOP AIDS NOW!.




Martine de Schutter, a voice for the marginalized

Martine de Schutter was a program manager for the coalition Bridging the Gaps, an organization that focused on treatment access and services for LGBT, sex workers and people who use drugs. During her career, de Schutter had successfully lobbied to get important but marginalized populations included in the current EU HIV policy, Buzzfeed reported.

She wrote this moving description of her career on her LinkedIn profile:

Throughout my (professional) life I hope to contribute to making the world a better place to live, work and love. My long-term experience abroad (working and living for 10 years in Argentina, Bolivia & the United States) and shorter-term missions to many countries in Latin America and (Eastern) Europe has added much value to my professional and personal life. As a cultural anthroplogist specialised in gender and sexual and reproductive health, including HIV/AIDS, pro-active defence of human rights and the right to good health is at the core of my work.

descentintotyranny:

"My late father was in Auschwitz. My late mother was in Majdanek concentration camp. Every single member of my family on both sides was exterminated. Both my parents were in the Warsaw ghetto uprising. And it is precisely and exactly because of the lessons they taught me and my two siblings that I will not be silent when Israel commits its crimes against the Palestinians. And I consider nothing more despicable than to use their suffering, and their martyrdom, to try to justify the torture, the brutalization, the demolition of homes, that Israel gainly commits against the Palestinians. So I refuse any longer to be intimidated or brow-beaten by the tears. If you had any heart in you, would be crying for the Palestinians."

-Norman Finkelstein