Democracy Now! Blog

Mayor Chokwe Lumumba: A Life of Struggle, a Legacy of Progress

The world lost a visionary activist this week, with the death of Chokwe Lumumba, the newly elected mayor of Jackson, Miss.

February 27, 2014 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, African-American History, Mississippi, Civil Rights

"A Sad Day For All Americans": Human Rights and Legal Organizations Slam Bradley Manning Sentence

Response from Amnesty International, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights on the sentencing of Bradley Manning.

August 21, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive

Bradley Manning Sentenced to 35 Years In Prison

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking classified information to Wikileaks. Manning faced a maximum of 90 years in prison after his conviction last month on charges of espionage, theft and fraud. Manning’s sentence will automatically go the Army Court of Criminal Appeals, where he can seek a reduction of his prison term.

August 21, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Bradley Manning

READ: Two New Books on "Misremembering" MLK’s "I Have a Dream" Speech at the March on Washington

Read an excerpt from the new book by our recent guest, historian William P. Jones, "The March on Washington: Jobs, Freedom, and the Forgotten History of Civil Rights."

As Indonesia Threatens West Papuan Freedom Flotilla, Benny Wenda on Struggle for Independence

Bennywenda2

A group of Australian and West Papuan activists have set sail on a Freedom Flotilla bound for the Indonesian territory of West Papua. We speak to West Papuan independence leader Benny Wenda. [includes rush transcript]

August 20, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, West Papua, Indonesia, Jennifer Robinson, Benny Wenda

Massacre in Egypt: Sharif Abdel Kouddous Reports From Cairo After Hundreds Killed

Follow the latest on the crisis in Egypt with our correspondent Shariff Abdel Kouddous who is posting photos and video from the streets of Cairo.

August 14, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Egypt

Questlove on the Satirical Michele Bachmann Tribute That Almost Booted The Roots from "Late Night"

Bachmann-fallon

Since 2009, the legendary hip-hop group The Roots have made an unlikely transition as the nightly house band on NBC’s "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon." In this Democracy Now! web exclusive, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, The Roots’ drummer and "Late Night" musical director, talks about the 2011 controversy that almost got them fired: For the walkout music introducing guest Michele Bachmann, the Republican lawmaker and then-presidential candidate, The Roots played the Fishbone song "Lyin’ Ass Bitch." [includes rush transcript]

Questlove on How He Warned Occupy Wall Street of the Police Raid on Zuccotti Park

Questlove-ows-tweet1

Some have called Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson the "Paul Revere of Occupy Wall Street" after he tweeted them a warning on the night of November 2011 police raid of Zuccotti Park. In this Democracy Now! web exclusive, Questlove tells us the story. [includes rush transcript]

Web Exclusive: Questlove on His Memoir, Hip Hop, Occupy, Stevie Wonder and The Cosby Show

Here are some web-only highlights of our interview with hip-hop artist Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, drummer and co-founder of The Roots, the legendary hip-hop group and house band on NBC’s Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

August 14, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Race in America, Trayvon Martin, Author Interviews

The Comcast-Time Warner Merger Threatens Democracy

By Amy Goodman with Denis Moynihan

Comcast has announced it intends to merge with Time Warner Cable, joining together the largest and second-largest cable and broadband providers in the country. The merger must be approved by both the Justice Department and the FCC. Given the financial and political power of Comcast, and the Obama administration’s miserable record of protecting the public interest, the time to speak out and organize is now.

February 20, 2014 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, Media Consolidation, Media Analysis

Questlove of The Roots on His Musical Memoir, "Mo’ Meta Blues: The World According to Questlove"

Questlove-book

In this Democracy Now! web exclusive, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, the drummer for the legendary hip-hop group The Roots, discusses the writing of his new memoir, "Mo’ Meta Blues: The World According to Questlove." The book’s title is a riff on the 1990 Spike Lee film about jazz musicians, "Mo’ Better Blues." [includes rush transcript]

August 14, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Author Interviews, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson

Questlove on How Stevie Wonder & "The Cosby Show" Helped Shape Modern Hip-Hop

Steviewonder1

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, the drummer for the legendary hip-hop group The Roots, talks about the Cosby Show episode that left an indelible impression on him when he saw it at a young age: a guest appearance by Stevie Wonder, showcasing the art of sampling. [includes rush transcript]

August 14, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Author Interviews, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson

Questlove of The Roots: How the DEA Once Mistook Me for a Drug Don

Questlove

Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson, the drummer for the legendary hip-hop group The Roots, has been harassed by law enforcement on multiple occasions since a young age. In this Democracy Now! web exclusive, Questlove describes what’s likely his oddest experience: the time DEA agents held him at a Buffalo airport, suspecting him of being a drug dealer. [includes rush transcript]

August 14, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Drug War, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson

Part 2: Civil Rights Leader Bayard Rustin’s Role in Organizing the March on Washington

Bayard_rustin

We continue our conversation with former NAACP chair Julian Bond and Rustin’s partner, Walter Naegle. Rustin played a central role in organizing the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, which the nation is set to celebrate the 50th anniversary of in the coming weeks. [includes rush transcript]

Pete Seeger & Onondaga Leader Oren Lyons on Fracking, Indigenous Struggles and Hiroshima Bombing

Peteorensplitscreen

An extended web-only discussion with two prominent elders. Legendary musician Pete Seeger sings "If I Had A Hammer" and "I Come and Stand at Every Door," and Onondaga leader Oren Lyons talks about indigenous struggles against environmental destruction. [includes rush transcript]

August 09, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Indigenous, Hiroshima, Andy Mager, Oren Lyons, Pete Seeger

Cable Companies Urged to Make Public Access Television Shows More Accessible

Public-access-thumb1

Many cable companies refuse to list the titles of shows that air on public access television stations in their on-screen guides. Now media activists are pushing for the FCC to intervene. [includes rush transcript]

August 07, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Media Policy, FCC, Mitsuko Herrera

People of Color Are Losing Their Right to Vote

By Amy Goodman & Denis Moynihan

“I found myself standing in front of railroad tracks in South Florida. I was waiting on the train to come so I could jump in front of it and end my life.” So recounted Desmond Meade, describing his life nine years ago. He was homeless, unemployed, recently released from prison and addicted to drugs and alcohol. The train never came. He crossed the tracks and checked himself into a substance-abuse program. He went on to college, and now is just months away from receiving his law degree.

February 13, 2014 |  Filed under  Columns & Articles, Prison, Voting, Civil Rights

Glenn Greenwald on How Secretive DEA Unit Illegally Spies On Americans, Covers Up Actions

Journalist Glenn Greenwald responds to a report by Reuters about how a secretive U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration unit is covering up its use of intelligence intercepts and wiretaps to help launch criminal investigations of Americans.

August 05, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Domestic Spying, Drug War, Glenn Greenwald

WikiLeaks Attorney on Manning Guilty Verdict: Blowing Whistle on U.S. War Crimes is Not Espionage

U.S. Army whistleblower Bradley Manning was found guilty today of 20 charges in total, including espionage, but he was acquitted of aiding the enemy, the most serious charge. Michael Ratner, an attorney for WikiLeaks, appeared on the Democracy Now! special broadcast to respond to today’s verdict. [includes rush transcript]

Watch: Democracy Now! Live Coverage of Bradley Manning Verdict at 1pm EDT

Watch Democracy Now!’s special live broadcast of the Bradley Manning verdict featuring Jeremy Scahill, Wikileaks attorney Michael Ratner, Icelandic Parliamentarian Birgitta Jónsdóttir and independent journalist Kevin Gosztola.

July 30, 2013 |  Filed under  Web Exclusive, Bradley Manning, Wikileaks, Iraq, Whistleblowers