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Los Angeles Independent Media Center website offers a forum where left-wing issues are discussed. On this website, people with moderate to extreme political issues are offered the opportunity to share their views with society because sometimes the mainstream media often ignore them. According to Mac (2016), numerous socio-economic and political concerns are often discussed, especially those that have a direct impact on the lives of those who feel oppressed in the society. The following are some of the topics currently discussed actively on this website.
- The Dakota pipeline protest
- Black lives matters
- Los Angeles protest against the murder of Noel Aguilar by Sheriff
- Commemoration of trans day in West Hollywood
- Activists outraged by Kapparot chicken slaughter
- Murder of mentally distressed youth by police in Long Beach
- Families protest practices of foreclosure by Wells Fargo
- Protest in City of Fullerton against conspiracy to silence media
Black Lives Matter
Black lives matter is one of the issues that has raised massive public attention, especially the approach of the protests that have been witnessed not only in Los Angeles but also in other parts of the country. Cases where police officers fatally shoot unarmed people have been on the rise in the recent past. Statistics show that majority of those killed by police officers are Blacks. In some instances, these victims are shot after they have been successfully arrested, which raises the question of why the officers use lethal force against them. In some parts of the country, the protestors completely paralyze business operations as they engage the police in running battles.
Links to Extremist Groups
Black lives matter has become a movement that is fighting against police brutality that has been witnessed across the country. According to Alexander and West (2012), there has been fear among the law enforcement agencies that this movement might have links to extremist groups. Organizations such as ISIS and Al Qaeda are infiltrating the society and in most cases, they take advantage of the disgruntled section of the society that feels the existing systems and structures are designed to frustrate them.
According to Mac (2016), investigations have revealed that this movement has had no links with extremist groups. These are protestors who often respond to the clarion call to turn out and demonstrate against the social injustices that target Black Americans. It is important to note that the protestors are often both Blacks and Whites who feel that the actions of these rogue officers should come to an end.
Potential for Criminal Acts or Public Disorder
According to Taylor (2016), criminals often tend to take advantage of civil strife to cause mayhem in society. Protestors who often come out to demonstrate against police brutality are law-abiding American citizens who are interested in having a society where the law is allowed to prevail. However, such protests have offered criminals the best opportunity to cause public disorder and sometimes even engage in criminal acts.
A good example is the 2016 Dallas sniper attack that left five police officers dead and nine others wounded (Edwards & Harris, 2016). On that particular day of July 7, 2016, people were protesting against an incident where a police officer fatally shot an unarmed African American man. The sniper, Micah Xavier Johnson, was part of the protestors. As the peaceful protest came to an end, Johnson positioned himself inside a building within the El Centro College campus and started firing at unsuspecting police officers.
By the time the officers realized that they were under attack, five of them were already dead and nine others got seriously wounded. A gun battle ensued and the standoff lasted for hours. Johnson was later killed using a robot after it became apparent that his position within the building gave him leverage over the officers. It was a clear demonstration that in such demonstrations there is often a potential for criminal acts.
How Left-Wing Issues Are Covered in This Forum
In this forum, the left-wing issues are covered from a completely different perspective compared to the approach taken by the mainstream media. Alexander and West (2012) say that the mainstream media is riddled with bureaucracy and the desire to be seen as a law-abiding news outlet fully responsible for the message they pass to the public. The approach taken in this forum is completely different. It is a forum where those who feel helpless and ignored get to air their views.
There is a sense of concern and sympathy for the extremist. Even in cases where criminals take advantage of the protests and kill officers as witnessed in the case of Micah Johnson, the forum tends to justify such acts. There is the claim that Johnson gave out his own life to help liberate the African Americans who are yet to be free in their own country. The forum clearly shows how American society is still deeply divided even after the first African American was elected to the highest office in this country.
Alexander, M., & West, C. (2012). The new Jim Crow: Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness. New York, NY: New Press.
Edwards, S. B., & Harris, D. (2016). Black lives matter. Minneapolis, MN: Essential Library.
Mac, D. H. (2016). The war on cops: How the new attack on law and order makes everyone less safe. New York, NY: Encounter Books.
Taylor, K. (2016). From Black Lives Matter to Black liberation. Chicago, ILL: Haymarket Books.