Sunday, December 31, 2017

'The fruit of war': Pope Francis prints photo of Nagasaki victims/’This Man Is a Monster': Trump Under Fire for Dismissing Entire HIV/AIDS Council by FedEx Letter

'The fruit of war': Pope Francis prints photo of Nagasaki victims
Photo release is a first during holiday season


·          CNN

Posted: Dec 30, 2017 11:09 PM MST
Updated: Dec 31, 2017 02:48 AM MST

'The fruit of war': Pope Francis prints photo of Nagasaki victims

Pope releases photo 'The fruit of war' Nagasaki 1945, taken by American photographer Joseph Roger O'Donnell.
(CNN) - Pope Francis is having cards printed and distributed showing a 1945 photo of victims of the nuclear bombing of Nagasaki along with the words "the fruit of war."
The photo captures a boy carrying his dead brother on his shoulders while he waits for his turn at the crematory. It was taken by US Marine photographer Joe O'Donnell shortly after the bombs were dropped at the end of World War II.
The leader of the world's Roman Catholics asked that "the fruit of war" be written in the back of the card along with his signature "Franciscus."
A short caption explains the content and origin of the photo, it reads in part: "The young boy's sadness is expressed only in his gesture of biting his lips which are oozing blood."
After the bombs dropped by the US on Nagasaki and Hiroshima forced Japan's surrender and ended World War II in 1945, O'Donnell spent four years documenting the aftermath in the two cities, according to Library of Congress records.
His photos were published in the book titled "Japan 1945: A US. Marine's Photographs from Ground Zero."
CNN's senior Vatican analyst John Allen wrote on his website: "Though release of the photo in the run-up to New Year's does not add anything substantive to the pontiff's positions, it's nevertheless the first time Francis has asked that a specific image be circulated in the holiday season, suggesting he believes its message is especially relevant at the moment."
The Pope has previously condemned nuclear weapons and highlighted the impact of conflict on children, Allen wrote.

Copyright 2017 by CNN NewSource. All rights reserved.


This Man Is a Monster': Trump Under Fire for Dismissing Entire HIV/AIDS Council by FedEx Letter

Friday, December 29, 2017
Critics note that with this "dangerous" and "appalling" decison, the Trump "administration appears to be blatantly admitting it will do nothing" to address the epidemic.

The White House was adorned with a red ribbon
The White House was adorned with a red ribbon for World AIDS Day in 2015. (Photo: Ted Eytan/flickr/cc)

In a decision denounced as "dangerous" and "appalling," President Donald Trump has enraged members of the public health and LGBTQ communities by reportedly firing the remaining 16 members of his HIV/AIDS council in letters delivered to them by FedEx on Thursday.

Six members of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) had resigned in protest earlier this year, as Common Dreams reported, on the grounds that the Trump administration "has no strategy to address the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic, seeks zero input from experts to formulate HIV policy, and—most concerning—pushes legislation that will harm people living with HIV and halt or reverse important gains made in the fight against this disease."

Scott Schoettes, a Lambda Legal senior attorney who resigned from PACHA in June, tweeted about Thursday's firings, claiming Trump has "no respect for their service" and warning about what future HIV/AIDS policy may look like under this president:

Remaining #HIV/AIDS council members booted by @realDonaldTrump. No respect for their service. Dangerous that #Trump and Co. (Pence esp.) are eliminating few remaining people willing to push back against harmful policies, like abstinence-only sex ed. #WeObject #PACHA6 #Resist

Gabriel Maldonado, head of the LGBTQ and HIV/AIDS group Truevolution and a remaining member of PACHA, confirmed the firings to the Washington Blade, but added that the "explanation is still unclear" and "I can only speculate" as to why they were dismissed.
"Like any administration, they want their own people there," Maldonado said, acknowledging "ideological and philosophical differences" and that many of the remaining members, including her, were appointed by former President Barack Obama.

   "I was co-chair of the disparities committee," Maldonado added, "so much of my advocacy and policy references surrounded vulnerable populations, addressing issuing of diverse communities, specifically looking at the impacts of the LGBT community, namely, the disproportionate impact of HIV and AIDS to people of color, gay men, transgender women...and a lot of those key vulnerable populations are not being prioritized in this administration."

Sources close to the decision told Newsweek "they suspect the charter for PACHA will be re-written with renewed focus on abstinence and religious, non-evidence based public health approaches." Newsweek noted that while the Obama administration also dismissed all panel members who were appointed by his predecessor, George W. Bush, the current administration has been particularly complacent on the issue, and "Trump has yet to appoint an HIV/AIDS chief, the first time since Bill Clinton created the position in 1993 that a president has failed to do so."

   Critics swiftly denounced the firings on social media, including one who noted that with this decision, the Trump "administration appears to be blatantly admitting it will do nothing about HIV/AIDS epidemic."

People living with #HIV/AIDS are some of the most vulnerable in our communities. #Trump and Co. have now dismantled #PACHA, the council serving those marginalized people. Absolutely cruel. #Resist #ActUP

๐Ÿ˜ก HIV/AIDS is slamming the nation, especially the South. We cannot afford lack of leadership in #HIV policy, treatment, prevention, and research lest we return to the heartbreak of the 1980s and 1990s. #PACHA …

Some accused the president of trying to appease his more religious supporters, while others noted Vice President Mike Pence's influence over the administration and his track record on HIV/AIDS.

Let’s make no mistake: Trump is firing these people to appease a religious right who believe that HIV/AIDS is appropriate punishment for homosexuals. They are trying to kill us. …

More reasons for concern about where the Trump/Pence administration's health care priorities do - and don't - lie. (As if we needed anymore). …

Now that Trump has fired the entirety of the HIV/AIDS advisory council, it is worth remembering that Mike Pence enabled Indiana’s recent HIV outbreak through inaction. …

In a series of tweets, journalist and activist George Johnson outlined how the move is just the latest in a series of decisions by the adminstration to dismantle federal efforts to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
So Trump has disbanded the Presidents Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA). A recap and some thoughts.

So we are clear in January they shut down ONAP (Office of National Aids Policy)

A thread

In March they announced no cuts to HIV funding, then proposed 50 million in cuts domestically and 300 million to PEPFAR (globally). A dangerous and unprecedented move against the HIV community.

By May they suggested cuts of closer to 1.2 billion dollars combined domestically and globally. This led to 6 members leaving the council. In September, the actual budget kept HIV funding stable based on prior years.

And now, he has eliminated the Council.

HIV is still deadly, both here and abroad.
HIV still affects Black and Brown communities at higher rates.
HIV is still growing in the South due to lack of resources and education.
HIV hurts Black women and Black LGBTQ people at epidemic levels.

Stay fighting.

This fight is far from over, and despite the constant attacks from this administration, HIV activists and advocates have been here before. We did not give up when Reagan was on his bullshit, and we will not stop now because Trump has always been bullshit.

If anything, find a renewed spirit to continue to do the work to end this administration, work on a grassroots approach where community helps community for the shortcomings of an anti-black establishment.

Johnson was not alone in making a reference to former President Ronald Reagan—who is often criticized for "his shameful abdication of leadership in the fight against AIDS"—or noting how this move is just one of many by the Trump administration that could have dire consequences for Americans battling HIV/AIDS.
Trump budget proposed dramatically slashing HIV/AIDS funding:
-$150 million cut from HIV prevention programs
-$26 million cut from housing for people with AIDS
-$800 million from global programs
And now this
๐Ÿ‘‡ …

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"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs

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