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Laura Flanders

Contributing Writer

Contributing writer Laura Flanders is the host and founder of GRITtv with Laura Flanders, a daily talk show for people who want to do more than talk. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller BUSHWOMEN: Tales of a Cynical Species (Verso, 2004) and Blue GRIT: True Democrats Take Back Politics from the Politicians  (Penguin Press, 2007). A regular contributor on MSNBC, Flanders has appeared on shows from Real Time with Bill Maher to The O’Reilly Factor. Flanders is the editor of At the Tea Party: The Wing Nuts, Whack Jobs and Whitey-whiteness of the New Republican Right… and Why we Should Take it Seriously (October 2010, OR books). For more information, go to LauraFlanders.com or GRITtv.org.


  • October 16, 2007

    40 Years On, a New Call to Resist?

    Forty years ago, a handful of smart Americans had an idea how to end a war. They published a call for moral, political and financial support for those refusing to serve. Initially signed by Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Grace Paley, Dr. Benjamin Spock, Marcus Raskin, and the Reverend William Sloane Coffin among others, eventually, 20,000 signed on and the indispensable RESIST foundation was formed.

    Listening as it was read aloud at a 40th anniversary party this weekend, "Resist: A Call to Resist Illegitimate Authority" seems as relevant as ever. How about a second Call?

    The Call:

    Laura Flanders

  • September 27, 2007

    Next on Jena at the New York Times?

    In response to those who've written to ask whether I read Louisiana District Attorney, Reed Walters' op-ed in the New York Times. Yes I did! And I asked Alan Bean about it today on the RadioNation program that will air Sunday on Air America and across the country this week.

    Bean, of the Friends of Justice, says that contrary to Walters' assertions, there is sufficient stand alone legislation on the books in Louisiana to have covered the noose-hanging incident. I'm no lawyer, but it seems to me that the there were plenty of ways the local authorities could have responded to the noose-hanging, short of bringing criminal charges, that would nonetheless have sent a clear message about where the campus stood on racial equality.

    Jena High needed to suspend the noose-hangers for a long enough period to make an impact (not just a couple of days. ) In addition, the principal could have convened a community meeting, held a public event, hosted a teach-in on lynching. You name it. Anything that sent a strong message to the parents, the school body and the public: this community will not tolerate hate-speech or hateful acts. Says Bean: "The principal needed to say clearly: there's no such thing as a color line on campus, no such thing as a black or a white tree." Handled firmly back in September '06, the whole incident need never have left the auspices of the school. No one needed to have gone to court; no one should ever have been beaten up.

    Laura Flanders

  • September 25, 2007

    Is Jena America?

    "Jena is America," says Alan Bean, speaking of the Louisiana town where six black students are looking at decades in jail for a schoolyard brawl while white kids are facing nothing for hanging up nooses. Jena is America in the sense that the unequal justice there is not unique. There are "Jena Sixes" behind bars in every state. But it isn't America in the sense that the country as a whole has had no trouble at all ignoring Jena.

    Bean is a Baptist minister from Texas who formed Friends of Justice in response to the now infamous Tulia drug sting of 1999 in which over half of Tulia's black males were convicted on the uncorroborated word of a corrupt and racist undercover cop. He was instrumental in getting that story out. In January he got busy in Jena. By that time, a young white man had already been beaten up and six young black students had been indicted, originally on attempted murder charges. One of the six, Mychal Bell, was legally still a juvenile when he was convicted of attempted second-degree murder with a deadly shoe. While five were released on bail, Bell remains in jail.

    "If the media wasn't watching what was going on then every last one of those kids would be in jail," one of the Jena mothers, Tina Jones, told the Nation's Gary Younge.

    Laura Flanders

  • June 14, 2007

    Idiot Liberals Strike Again

    When will Democratic leaders stop dissing their base? David Obey is making a habit of it.

    Earlier this year, the Wisconsin veteran, who heads up the House Appropriations Committee called anti-war workers, "idiot liberals" for calling for a cut off in funds for Bush's Iraq disaster. This week, Obey told advocates for youth to grow up and stop complaining about the millions of dollars his committee intends to shovel to deadly, discredited abstinence-only programs.

     

    Laura Flanders

  • May 21, 2007

    Taking on Dobbs

    I had an interesting run in with Lou Dobbs on May 8th. The clip has just become available on my site. Dave Niewert at Orcinus transcribed the key part and kicked off an interesting conversation about Dobbs and macho bullying.

    Laura Flanders

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  • Campaigns and Elections April 9, 2007

    Bottom-Up Power

    In Montana, grassroots campaigns elected politicians and influenced policy. The same can happen across the country.

    Laura Flanders

  • Political Figures January 31, 2007

    Obama’s Ruined Homeland

    In Kenya's Yala Swamp, where Senator Barack Obama traces his African roots, an Oklahoma-based company has wrecked a rich and delicate ecosystem.

    Laura Flanders

  • December 22, 2004

    Letters

    SAVE YOUR CONFEDERATE MONEY...

    Manchester, NJ

    Thomas Geoghegan, Laura Flanders, Our Readers and Laura Ross

  • Armed Conflicts October 28, 2004

    Antifeminists Hit Iraq

    As the right wing's antifeminist front, the sisters of the Independent Women's Forum have been such a hit in this country that they're now getting taxpayer money to take their act on the road.

    Laura Flanders and Laura Ross

  • Election 2004 March 4, 2004

    Beware the Bushwomen

    This article was adapted from Bushwomen: Tales of a Cynical Species (Verso). Check www.lauraflanders.com for book-tour information.

    Laura Flanders