Saturday, 5 May 2012

1968 Olympics Black Power salute From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - Peter Norman

1968 Olympics Black Power salute

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Gold Medallist Tommie Smith, (center) and Bronze medallist John Carlos (right) showing the raised fist on the podium after the 200m in the 1968 Summer Olympics wearing Olympic Project for Human Rights badges. Silver medallistPeter Norman from Australia (left) joins them.

The black power salute at the 1968 Olympics was a protest made by the African American athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos; the athletes made the raised fist gesture at the Olympic Stadium in Mexico City. The Australian competitor, Peter Norman, wore an Olympic Project for Human Rights badge in solidarity. The event was one of the most overtly political statements[1] in the history of the modern Olympic Games. Tommie Smith stated in his autobiography, Silent Gesture, that the gesture was not a "black power" salute, but in fact a "human rights salute".




[edit]The protest

On the morning of 16 October 1968,[2] U.S. athlete Tommie Smith won the 200 meter race in a world-record time of 19.83 seconds, with Australia's Peter Norman second with a time of 20.06 seconds, and the U.S.'s John Carlos in third place with a time of 20.10 seconds. After the race was completed, the three went to collect their medals at the podium. The two U.S. athletes received their medals shoeless, but wearing black socks, to represent black poverty.[3] Smith wore a black scarf around his neck to represent black pride, Carlos had his tracksuit top unzipped to show solidarity with all blue collar workers in the U.S. and wore a necklace of beads which he described "were for those individuals that were lynched, or killed and that no-one said a prayer for, that were hung and tarred. It was for those thrown off the side of the boats in the middle passage."[4] All three athletes wore Olympic Project for Human Rights (OPHR) badges after Norman, a critic of Australia's White Australia Policy, expressed empathy with their ideals.[5] Sociologist Harry Edwards, the founder of the OPHR, had urged black athletes to boycott the games; reportedly, the actions of Smith and Carlos on 16 October 1968[2] were inspired by Edwards' arguments.[6]

Both U.S. athletes intended on bringing black gloves to the event, but Carlos forgot his, leaving them in the Olympic Village. It was the Australian, Peter Norman, who suggested Carlos wear Smith's left-handed glove, this being the reason behind him raising his left hand, as opposed to his right, differing from the traditional Black Power salute.[7] When "The Star-Spangled Banner" played, Smith and Carlos delivered the salute with heads bowed, a gesture which became front page news around the world. As they left the podium they were booed by the crowd.[8] Smith later said "If I win, I am American, not a black American. But if I did something bad, then they would say I am a Negro. We are black and we are proud of being black. Black America will understand what we did tonight."[3]

[edit]International Olympic Committee response

International Olympic Committee (IOC) president, Avery Brundage, deemed it to be a domestic political statement, unfit for the apolitical, international forum the Olympic Games were supposed to be. In an immediate response to their actions, he ordered Smith and Carlos suspended from the U.S. team and banned from the Olympic Village. When the US Olympic Committee refused, Brundage threatened to ban the entire US track team. This threat led to the two athletes being expelled from the Games.

A spokesman for the IOC said it was "a deliberate and violent breach of the fundamental principles of the Olympic spirit."[3] Brundage, who was president of the United States Olympic Committee in 1936, had made no objections against Nazi salutes during the Berlin Olympics. He argued that the Nazi salute, being a national salute at the time, was acceptable in a competition of nations, while the athletes' salute was not of a nation and therefore unacceptable.[9] However, this rationalization relied upon public ignorance that it was contradicted by the IOC Charter itself, which has always stipulated that, "the Olympic Games are competitions between athletes in individual or team events and not between countries."[10]

Brundage had been one of the United States' most prominent Nazi sympathisers even after the outbreak of the Second World War,[11] and his removal as president of the IOC had been one of the three stated objectives of the Olympic Project for Human Rights[12]

Today, the official IOC website states that "Over and above winning medals, the black American athletes made names for themselves by an act of racial protest."[13]


Smith and Carlos were largely ostracized by the U.S. sporting establishment in the following years and, in addition, were subject to criticism of their actions. Time magazine showed the five-ring Olympic logo with the words, "Angrier, Nastier, Uglier", instead of "Faster, Higher, Stronger". Back home, they were subject to abuse and they and their families received death threats.[14]

Smith continued in athletics, going on to play in the NFL with the Cincinnati Bengals, before becoming an assistant professor of Physical Education at Oberlin College. In 1995, he went on to help coach the U.S. team at the World Indoor Championships at Barcelona. In 1999 he was awarded the California Black Sportsman of the Millennium Award. He is now a public speaker.

Carlos' career followed a similar path to Smith's. He initially continued in athletics, equalling the 100 yard dash world record the following year. Later, he played in the NFL with thePhiladelphia Eagles, before a knee injury prematurely ended his career. He fell upon hard times in the late 1970s and, in 1977, his ex-wife committed suicide, leading him to a period of depression.[15] In 1982, Carlos was employed by the Organizing Committee for the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles to promote the games and act as liaison with the city's black community. In 1985, he became a track and field coach at Palm Springs High School, a post he still holds.

Norman, who was sympathetic to his competitors' protest, was reprimanded by his country's Olympic authorities and ostracized by the Australian media.[16] He was not picked for the1972 Summer Olympics, despite finishing third in his trials. Smith and Carlos were pallbearers at his funeral.[17]

In 2005, San Jose State University honored former students Smith and Carlos with a 22-foot high statue of their protest.[18] A student, Erik Grotz, initiated the project: "One of my professors was talking about unsung heroes and he mentioned Tommie Smith and John Carlos. He said these men had done a courageous thing to advance civil rights, and, yet, they had never been honored by their own school." In January 2007, History San Jose opened a new exhibit called Speed City: From Civil Rights to Black Power, covering the San Jose State athletic program "from which many student athletes became globally recognized figures as the Civil Rights and Black Power movements reshaped American society."[19]

On 3 March 2008, in the Detroit Free Press editorial section, an editorial by Orin Starn entitled "Bottom line turns to hollow gold for today's Olympians" lamented the lack of social engagement of modern sports athletes, in contrast to Smith and Carlos.

Smith and Carlos received an Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the 2008 ESPY Awards honoring their action.[20]

Internationally, in a 2011 speech to the University of Guelph, Akaash Maharaj, a member of the Canadian Olympic Committee and head of Canada's Olympic Equestrian team, said, "In that moment, Tommie Smith, Peter Norman, and John Carlos became the living embodiments of Olympic idealism. Ever since, they have been inspirations to generations of athletes like myself, who can only aspire to their example of putting principle before personal interest. It was their misfortune to be far greater human beings than the leaders of the IOC of the day."[21]

[edit]Sydney mural

In Australia, an historic airbrush mural of the trio on podium was painted in the inner-city suburb of Newtown in Sydney. In 2010 the highly visible work was under threat of demolition to make way for a rail tunnel.[22] Painted on a house wall with permission of the owner, it faces a main commuter rail line. Local government is fighting to retain the monochrome tribute, captioned "THREE PROUD PEOPLE MEXICO 68",[22] including attempts to have it heritage-listed, though this move would not guarantee its protection.[22]

[edit]Cultural influences

The Sydney Film Festival in mid-2008 featured a documentary about the protest entitled Salute. The film was written, directed and produced by Matt Norman, an Australian actor and film-maker, and Peter Norman's nephew.[23]

On 9 July 2008, BBC Four broadcast a documentary, Black Power Salute, by Geoff Small, about the protest and its aftermath. In an article, Small noted that the athletes of the British team attending the 2008 Olympics in Beijing had been asked to sign gagging clauses which would have restricted their right to make political statements, but that they had refused.[24]

The song "Mr. John Carlos" by Nationalteatern from their 1974 album Livet är en fest is about the event and its aftermath (especially for John Carlos).

[edit]See also


  1. ^ Lewis, Richard (8 October 2006). "Caught in Time: Black Power salute, Mexico, 1968". The Sunday Times (London). Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  2. a b "1968: Black athletes make silent protest"SJSUArchived from the original on 18 December 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  3. a b c "1968: Black athletes make silent protest". BBC. 17 October 1968. Archivedfrom the original on 16 January 2010. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  4. ^ Lucas, Dean (11 February 2007). "Black Power". Famous Pictures: The Magazine. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  5. ^ Peter Norman
  6. ^ Spander, Art (24 February 2006). "A Moment In Time: Remembering an Olympic Protest"CSTVArchived from the original on 21 October 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  7. ^ "The other man on the podium". BBC. 17 October 2008. Archived from the original on 26 October 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  8. ^ "John Carlos" (PDF). Freedom Weekend. Archived from the original on 18 December 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  9. ^ "The Olympic Story", editor James E. Churchill, Jr., published 1983 by Grolier Enterprises Inc.
  10. ^ Olympic Charter, Section 6 Item 1, International Olympic Committee, 1952 through 2007
  11. ^ Documentary "Hitler's Pawn: The Margeret Lambert Story", produced by HBO and Black Canyon Productions
  12. ^ Silent Gesture – Autobiography of Tommie Smith (excerpt via Google Books) – Smith, Tommie & Steele, David, Temple University Press, 2007, ISBN 159213639
  13. ^ Mexico 1968 (official International Olympic Committee website. Retrieved 9 September 2010.
  14. ^ "Tommie Smith 1968 Olympic Gold Medalist". Tommie Smith. Archived from the original on 19 October 2008. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  15. ^ Neil Amdur (10 Oct 2011). "Olympic Protester Maintains Passion". New York Times. Retrieved 11 October 2011.
  16. ^ Wise, Mike (5 October 2006). "Clenched fists, helping hand". The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  17. ^ Flanagan, Martin (6 October 2006). "Olympic protest heroes praise Norman's courage". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  18. ^ Slot, Owen (19 October 2005). "America finally honours rebels as clenched fist becomes salute". The Sunday Times (London). Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  19. ^ "Speed City: From Civil Rights to Black Power". History San José. 28 July 2005. Retrieved 9 November 2008.
  20. ^ "Salute at ESPYs – Smith and Carlos to receive Arthur Ashe Courage Award". 29 May 2008. Archived from the original on 5 April 2008. Retrieved 17 January 2009.
  21. ^ Speech to the Ontario Equine Center at the University of Guelph, Akaash Maharaj, 27 May 2011
  22. a b c "Last stand for Newtown's 'three proud people'", Josephine Tovey, 27 July 2010, Sydney Morning Herald Newtown's 'Three Proud People' Mural To Be Demolished? | Olympics
  23. ^ "2008 Program Revealed!". 8 May 2008. Archived from the original on 25 January 2009. Retrieved 17 January 2009.
  24. ^ Small, Geoff (9 July 2008). "Remembering the Black Power protest". The Guardian(UK). Retrieved 9 November 2008.

[edit]External links

Peter Norman From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - Peter George Norman (15 June 1942 – 3 October 2006) was an Australian track athlete best known for winning the silver medal in the 200 metres at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. His time of 2

Peter Norman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Tommie Smith (centre) and John Carlos(right) showing the Black Power salute in the 1968 Summer Olympics while Silver medalistPeter Norman (left) wears an OPHR badge to show his support for the two Americans.

Olympic medal record
Men's athletics
Silver 1968 Mexico City 200 metres

Peter George Norman (15 June 1942 – 3 October 2006) was an Australian track athlete best known for winning the silver medal in the 200 metres at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City. His time of 20.06 seconds still stands as the Australian 200m record.[1]He was a five-time Australian 200m champion.[1] He is also known for his support of John Carlos and Tommie Smith when they made their famous gesture at the 1968 Olympics medal ceremony.




Norman grew up in Coburg, Victoria. Initially an apprentice butcher, Norman later became a teacher, and worked for the VictorianDepartment of Sport and Recreation towards the end of his life.[2]

Peter Norman is the uncle to Australian film-maker and actor Matt Norman who has directed and produced the cinema-released documentary Salute about the three runners through Paramount Pictures and Transmission Films.


Before the 1968 Olympics Norman was a trainer for West Brunswick Football Club as a way of keeping fit over winter during the athletic circuit's off season. After 1968 he played 67 games for West Brunswick between 1972 and 1977 before coaching an under 19 team in 1978.

Norman kept running, but contracted gangrene in 1985 after tearing his Achilles Tendon during a charity race, which nearly led to his leg being amputated. Depression, heavy drinking and pain killer addiction followed.[3]

[edit]Sydney 2000

Australian organising authorities overlooked Norman as being involved in any way with the 2000 Summer Olympics held in Sydney; he was however eventually part of the event after being invited by the Americans when they heard that his own country had failed to do so.[4] On 17 October 2003 San Jose State University unveiled a statue commemorating the 1968 Olympic protest; Norman was not included as part of the statue itself—his empty podium spot intended for others viewing the statue to "take a stand"—but was invited to deliver a speech at the ceremony.[2]

[edit]1968 Olympics

Three Proud People mural, Newtown Sydney.

The gold and bronze medalists in the 200m at the 1968 Olympics were Americans Tommie Smith and John Carlos, respectively. On the medal podium, during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner", Smith and Carlos famously joined in a Black Power salute.

What is less known is that Norman, a white Australian, donned a badge on the podium in support of their cause, the Olympic Project for Human Rights (OPHR). After the race, Carlos and Smith told Norman what they were planning to do during the ceremony. As Flanagan wrote: "They asked Norman if he believed in human rights. He said he did. They asked him if he believed in God. Norman, who came from a Salvation Army background, said he believed strongly in God. "We knew that what we were going to do was far greater than any athletic feat. He said, 'I'll stand with you'." Carlos said he expected to see fear in Norman's eyes. He didn't. "I saw love.[5] On the way out to the medal ceremony, Norman saw the badge being worn by Paul Hoffman, a white member of the US Rowing Team, and asked him if he could wear it.[6] It was also Norman who suggested that Smith and Carlos share the black gloves used in their salute, after Carlos left his gloves in the Olympic Village.[7] This is the reason for Tommie Smith raising his right fist, while John Carlos raised his left.

Australia's Olympic authorities reprimanded him and the Australian media ostracised him; Norman was also banned for two years on his return. Despite Norman running qualifying times for the 100m five times and 200m 13 times during 1971/72, the Australian Olympic track team did not send him, or any other male sprinters, to the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, the first modern Olympics since1896 where no Australian sprinters participated.[6]

[edit]Death and honour

Norman died of a heart attack on 3 October 2006 in Melbourne at the age of 64.[8] US Track and Field Federation proclaimed 9 October 2006, the date of his funeral, as Peter Norman Day. Thirty-eight years after the three made history, both Smith and Carlos gave eulogies and were pallbearers at Norman's funeral.[2]


An airbrush mural of the trio on podium exists in the inner-city suburb of Newtown in Sydney in Leamington Lane. Silvio Offria who allowed an artist known only as "Donald" to paint the mural on his house, said Norman came to Newtown to see the mural before he died in 2006, "He came and had his photo taken, he was very happy."[9] The monochrome tribute, captioned "THREE PROUD PEOPLE MEXICO 68," is under threat of demolition to make way for a rail tunnel and counter actions are being attempted to retain it.[9]


  1. a b Beth Harris & Jordan Robertson, Australian Sprinter Peter Norman Dies, 3 October., 2006
  2. a b c Hawker, Phillippa (15 July 2008). "Salute to a champion"The Age. Retrieved 2008-07-15.
  3. ^ Damian Johnstone and Matt Norman. A Race to Remember- the Peter Norman Story. Jo Jo Publishing. Sydney. 2003.
  4. ^ Schembri, Jim (17 July 2008). "Salute"The Age. Retrieved 2008-07-18.
  5. ^ Martin Flanagan. Tell Your Kids About Peter Norman. The Age. 10 October 2006 accessed 27 Jan 2011.
  6. a b Hurst, Mike (2006-10-07). "Peter Norman's Olympic statement". The Courier-Mail.,,20541398-10389,00.html. Retrieved 2009-01-17.
  7. ^ BBC News Magazine, "The other man on the podium", 17 October 2008
  8. ^ Hurst, Mike (7 October 2006). "Peter Norman's Olympic statement" The Courier-Mail. Retrieved 2009-01-17.
  9. a b "Last stand for Newtown's 'three proud people'", Josephine Tovey, 27 July 2010, Sydney Morning Herald [1]

[edit]External links

Matt Norman From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - (Schapelle Corby)

Matt Norman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Matt Norman

Actor / Director / Producer Matt Norman.
Born Matthew Travis Norman
20 October 1971 (age 40)
Tallangatta, Victoria, Australia
Spouse Rebecca Downie (Norman)

Matthew Travis "Matt" Norman (born 20 October 1971) is an actor turned filmmaker, best known for his acting work on Australian TV Shows Blue HeelersNeighbours and Stingers, U.S telemovies Moby-Dick, Silver Strand and Ghost Rider.



[edit]Early life and family

Norman was born in Tallangatta, Victoria, to Laurence (Laurie) Norman and Jillian (Jill) Norman. He is the middle of three, having an older brother Jamie (Jim) Norman and sister Selina Norman.

Norman attended Nandaly then Lindenow public school in his primary school years, and then he attended Nagle CollegeBairnsdale, completing year 12 in 1989.

He moved to Melbourne from Bairnsdale in 1989 and worked many jobs including nightclub security, bodyguard to both Australian and international celebrities and became a member of Australia's elite 1 Commando Regiment in the Australian army before embarking on a successful stint as an administration officer with National Mutual in Melbourne. In 1994, Norman started pursuing his dream of becoming an actor. While still working in the security industry, he started at the National Theatre Drama School in St Kilda, Melbourne where he met his wife Rebecca Norman (née Downie). After one year of drama school he left to pursue an acting career. Norman was also known for his singing and guitar abilities, playing in a Melbourne based rock band called Dirty Rotten Scoundrels which lasted a bit over a year with various gigs around Melbourne and rural Victoria.


After many years as an actor on television and film, Matt's ambition to start writing screenplays started when well-known Australian Director Malcolm Robertson read one of Matt's first screenplays Imperial Myer. Robertson and Norman worked closely on the screenplay for over a year which honed Norman's skills to look into directing both theater and film as well as branch out to write more stories for the screen.

Norman's career started as a filmmaker when his first film All the Kings Horses won several international awards in Australia and overseas. Since then he has gone on to write, direct and produce several other award-winning films such as The Writer starring one of Australia's best known actors Kym Gyngell, Shank starring Rob Carlton, and finally The Umbrella Menstarring Blue Heelers star Damian Walshe-Howling and Neighbours star Benji McNair.

By this time, Matt Norman and his wife Rebecca had four children. Hunter, Riley, Azure and more recently Charlie. Matt also has another daughter Imogen from a previous relationship.

[edit]2008 Breakthrough

One story that was influential to Matt Norman's career is a film about his famous uncle, Australian sprinter Peter Norman. Peter was the Silver Medalist in the 200m at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics. With Americans Tommie Smith and John Carlos, he became part of one of the 20th Century's most photographed moments: The Black Power Salute.

Matt Norman realised that the full story of his uncle had never been told. There had been attempts by American filmmakers but they all lacked one major ingredient, Peter Norman. Matt started filming Salute at the end of 2002. With no budget, no funding and no help he went about making a film that he hoped would get picked up by a local film festival. Instead, Salute is now considered one of the most ambitious and most expensive documentary films ever made in Australia. With the help of the FFC (Film Finance Corporation- now Screen Australia) and his local funding body Film Victoria, Norman raised close to two million dollars to help with the post production of the film. In October 2006, Peter Norman died of a heart attack. Matt Norman's life was turned upside down when his film that was to honor his uncle would now be regarded as a memory of his uncle and the stance he took at the 1968 Mexico City Olympic Games.

In 2008, Andrew Mackie and Richard Payton of Transmission Films were signed on as Australian Distributors and later brought on board Paramount Pictures Australia to release the film nationally in cinemas throughout his native country.

Starting from scratch with nothing, and losing his uncle in 2006 as well as his own home to make the film, Matt Norman has held onto his promise to Peter Norman to finally tell the World the true story of events of the 1968 Mexico City Olympics.

Salute had its World Premiere at the exclusive Sydney Film Festival on the 8 June 2008, and was released Australia-wide in cinemas on the 24 July 2008, with the rest of the world to follow shortly after. The DVD release of the film came out in Australia on the 15 January 2009 and is set to screen in the United States in the coming months.

One of Salute's major achievements for 2008 was being #1 at the Australian box office for a documentary and in the top ten box office of all Australian films such as "Australia", "Black Balloon".

Salute screened in Vancouver during the Winter Olympics as part of the festivities and will be released in the United Kingdom during June 2012, again through the 2012 Olympic Games and in the USA for it's official North American launch during July 2012.

[edit]Wingman Pictures

The future looks good for Norman and his film production company Wingman Pictures. The Australian CEO of Wingman Pictures Pty Ltd opened up a second office in New York City at the start of 2010 with associates in Los Angeles with plans for a UK Office shortly.

The company is involved in film production, film sales and film distribution.

Whilst making films is the most important thing for Norman, he believes in also helping those filmmakers who never see support from the Australian funding bodies boy's club. TheWingman Pictures slate of projects can be viewed online for more information.

[edit]2011-2012 Film Projects

Norman has several films currently in various stages of pre-production and production for 2011 to 2012. Again Norman's subject matter deals with standing up against injustice. His latest project The Human Race Film deals with banking greed and his own experience dealing with the National Australia Bank fraudulently foreclosing on his own home. When a message on youtube by the filmmaker generated over 25,000 hits on the webpage in only a few days, Norman made the decision to investigate banking fraud and also the role the Courts have in helping the banks cover up the fraud. There is a lot happening in the World today with an emphasis on home foreclosures, especially in the United States. Norman says that Securitization is the main factor in fraudulent banking practice by having your mortgage sold to investors on the stock market firstly without permission and secondly guaranteeing much profit for the banks without loaning the mortgagee any money at all. It is therefor believed that if the bank hasn't put its own money in that it has no claim on the asset being the home.

With many forums online starting to take up this fight, it seems Norman is standing up to go the extra mile by filming the experience in court and at home to educate others on the role of the bank and the need for tighter laws that stop the banks making claim to assets that don't belong to them.

Upcoming projects listed on the film company webpage are: Scab Girl Asylum – The Sue Treweek Story (Drama) to be shot in Queensland during 2012, and the feature 1968 the feature drama based on Norman's International award winning documentary Salute, to be shot in Mexico late 2013.

[edit]Selected filmography

[edit]Actor – Television

[edit]Actor – Film

[edit]Writer / Director / Producer — Film

[edit]Film Awards


[edit]External links

Friday, 4 May 2012

Nancy Pelosi: Medical Marijuana Busts By Feds Of 'Strong Concern' - The Huffington Post | By Lucia Graves Posted: 05/ 3/2012 1:59 pm

Nancy Pelosi: Medical Marijuana Busts By Feds Of 'Strong Concern'

The Huffington Post  |  By  

Posted: 05/ 3/2012 1:59 pm Updated: 05/ 3/2012 2:33 pm

Pelosi Marijuana
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.)

U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Wednesday released a statement pushing back against the Obama administration's interference with medical marijuana laws in California and beyond. Her statement comes after medical marijuana advocates delivered a petitionearlier that day calling on Pelosi to defend patients from ramped up federal enforcement measures.

"I have strong concerns about the recent actions by the federal government that threaten the safe access of medicinal marijuana to alleviate the suffering of patients in California," said Pelosi, "and undermine a policy that has been in place under which the federal government did not pursue individuals whose actions complied with state laws providing for medicinal marijuana."

Medical marijuana is currently legal in California and 15 other states, plus the District of Columbia, and during his campaign for president, Obama vowed to stop the raids on medical marijuana users that were prevalent under George W. Bush, saying raiding patients who use marijuana for medicinal purposes "makes no sense."

Yet since October 2009, the Justice Department has conducted more than 170 aggressive SWAT-style raids in nine medical marijuana states, resulting in at least 61 federal indictments, according to data compiled by Americans for Safe Access, an advocacy group. Federal authorities have also seized property from landlords who rent space to growers, threatening them with prosecution, and authorities have even considered taking action against newspapers selling ad space to dispensaries.

Pelosi joins a number of other political figures -- among them Barney Frank, Ron Paul and Pat Robertson -- who have advocated recently in favor of leaving the issue of medical marijuana to the states.

Her full statement reads:

Access to medicinal marijuana for individuals who are ill or enduring difficult and painful therapies is both a medical and a states' rights issue. Sixteen states, including our home state of California, and the District of Columbia have adopted medicinal marijuana laws -- most by a vote of the people.

I have strong concerns about the recent actions by the federal government that threaten the safe access of medicinal marijuana to alleviate the suffering of patients in California, and undermine a policy that has been in place under which the federal government did not pursue individuals whose actions complied with state laws providing for medicinal marijuana.

I am pleased to join organizations that support legal access to medicinal marijuana, including the American Nurses Association, the Lymphoma Foundation of America, and the AIDS Action Council.Proven medicinal uses of marijuana include improving the quality of life for patients with cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, and other severe medical conditions.

Medicinal marijuana alleviates some of the most debilitating symptoms of AIDS, including pain, wasting, and nausea. The opportunity to ease the suffering of people who are seriously ill or enduring difficult and painful therapies is an opportunity we must not ignore.

For these reasons, I have long supported efforts in Congress to advocate federal policies that recognize the scientific evidence and clinical research demonstrating the medical benefits of medicinal marijuana, that respects the wishes of the states in providing relief to ill individuals, and that prevents the federal government from acting to harm the safe access of medicinal marijuana provided under state law. I will continue to strongly support those efforts.


Judge Jim Gray on The Six Groups Who Benefit From Drug Prohibition

ANOESCHKA VON MECK, KNYSNA-PLETT HERALD - Rastafari feel like easy target 06:30 (GMT+2), Thu, 29 March 2012

Rastafari feel like easy target
06:30 (GMT+2), Thu, 29 March 2012

Rastafari feel like easy target

Rastafarians outside the Knysna Court for the second day in a row, on Wednesday morning. They are very unhappy with what they feel is the police’s attempt to ‘chase statistics’. A Judah Square resident said that the community becomes a police target as soon as their drug arrest quota for the month seems too low. “They hit on us because we are a ‘lekker’ easy target.”



KNYSNA NEWS - The peace-loving Rastafarian community members of Judah Square are currently consulting with their legal representatives regarding a possible class action lawsuit against the Minister of Police after an early morning SAPS raid at 06:00 on Tuesday, March 27.

According to traumatised and furious eyewitnesses, at least seventeen police vans and more than 50 police officers from different strike teams were used to raid the Rastafarians while several were attending their morning devotions in their tabernacle.

It is said that the police used unnecessary force and violence, throwing stun grenades, unprovoked, into the crowd of people, including terrified children. Evidence of damage to private property by the police was recorded on several cellphones when the residents returned to their homes or while they were trying to stop the police from breaking the place down. 

In one instance, a woman's front and back security gates were forced open by the police and she was shocked to find the officers helping themselves to her avocados, chilies and tomatoes in her garden. 

"They come here supposedly because we are breaking the law by growing dagga, but what are they doing? They are common thieves and such 'tweegesig' [two-faced] hypocrites!"

Eyewitnesses said that the woman was told "You talk too much," before being loaded into the back of a van. It is unclear whether this is the same 47-year-old individual who was released on R1 000 bail on Wednesday morning, March 28 for illegal possession of dagga. Her case was postponed to Tuesday, May 15. 

For all the effort and drama, only three individuals were arrested. Apart from the woman, the chief of the Judah Square community, Noel 'Maxie' Melville (48) and his son, Menelick (21), were taken away to be locked up. According to their legal representative, attorney Carl Jeppe, they were released with a warning and the case will be heard in court on May 16. 

"Both the detainees were charged on counts of assault, intimidation, interference with a police official in the execution of his official duties and also Crimen Injuria," said provincial police spokesperson, Captain Malcolm Pojie. He also denied that any rubber bullets were used during the raid (someone had claimed injury), but confirmed the use of stun grenades. A stun grenade was apparently also thrown into the home of the Rastafarian chief, despite the fact that the police had been asked not to scare the children who attend a crèche in the Melville home.

Said Pojie: "This operation was aimed at dealing with drugs in Knysna. It was not aimed at any child or parents who visited this area."

Asked why the suspects had been detained overnight, he replied, "These suspects needed to appear in court due to the seriousness of the charges, before they could be released. This operation is in line with the provincial approach to deal effectively with the abuse of drugs in this province. The aim of this operation was to effectively deal with the illegal usage, abuse and the supply of drugs, in particular dagga (cannabis) in the Knysna policing precinct." 

The legality of the search warrants will also be investigated as one of the warrants was apparently for a man who does not own a home.

The police claims to have seized R37 000 worth of dagga.

Members attached to the Southern Cape Crime Combating Unit, Tactical Response Team (TRT), Knysna Police Crime Prevention and the George Cluster Project team that focuses on illegal drugs, took part in this joint crime prevention operation. 

"Funny that the police come to us who they know is a soft target and unarmed, but they have to drive past several Tik homes where there are 'skollies' with 'gunne', to get to us, huh?" said one of the protestors outside Knysna's court on Tuesday. The crowd said they were becoming increasingly frustrated by continued police action against them while a blind eye is turned to serious drug dealers. The same group of residents returned the next day, on Wednesday, to wait for the release of their chief and fellow Judah Square residents.


Thursday, 3 May 2012

GigaOM - Why HP is betting the farm on Autonomy By Colleen Taylor Aug. 18, 2011, 4:10pm PT

Why HP is betting the farm on Autonomy

By  Aug. 18, 2011, 4:10pm PT 21 Comments

HP CEO Leo Apotheker

On Thursday Hewlett-Packard announced plans to spend some $10.25 billion in cash to acquire Autonomy, the United Kingdom–based software and services company.

Given that HP’s cash reserves currentlytotal $12.9 billion, the deal represents a major monetary outlay that will leave the company’s wallet significantly lighter than it has been for many years. Why is HP is taking such a huge leap?

In a Q&A session with investors and analysts on Thursday, HP’s CEO, Leo Apotheker, acknowledged that the Autonomy bid is bold, but he insisted that it will pay off in the end. Here are his main reasons why:

  • It’s now-or-never time for HP. Apotheker recognized that people may question why HP is making such a big bet, but according to him, drastic times call for drastic measures.

    This is about a transformation to position HP for the future. These changes are fundamental for the future we all want. HP is at a critical point in its existence.

  • Businesses today deal with a ton of data, so Autonomy’s software to help manage that data will be in demand for years to come. None of HP’s current businesses have that kind of growth potential.

    Autonomy represents an opportunity for HP to accelerate our vision to . . . lead a large and growing space, which is enterprise information management. If we execute this deal it will position HP as a large and growing leader in the space.

  • Margin-wise, Autonomy can hit the ground running at HP. Apotheker pointed out that Autonomy has grown its revenue at a compound annual growth rate of 55 percent, and with an operating profit of 83 percent over the past five years.

    We’re buying a very strong business and we believe we can extract a lot more out of this business by combining it with HP. That was the justification for the price.

  • Apotheker has a soft spot for software. Apotheker joined HP as CEO nine months ago, after spending more than 20 years in various roles at SAP, the German software corporation. In the earnings call, Apotheker noted that buying Autonomy puts him in a comfortable space.

    As an executive who has spent most of my career primarily in software, this is a world I know very well.

On the earnings call, several people pressed Apotheker on Autonomy’s price tag — “You are paying a fantastic price,” Sanford Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi said — but they seemed to agree that moving toward a higher-growth market such as enterprise software is a smart move for HP. Whether those benefits will be worth the big cost will only be seen in time.

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FEMEN From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

It has been suggested that Anna Hutsol be merged into this article or section. (DiscussProposed since March 2012.
FEMEN logo.jpg
Leader Anna Hutsol[1]
Founded 2008[1]
Headquarters Kiev[2]
International affiliation Cooperation with other international women’s organizations[3]
Official colours Pink
Politics of Ukraine
Political parties

FEMEN (UkrainianФемен) is a Ukrainian protest group based in Kiev, founded in 2008. The organisation became internationally known for organizing topless protests against sex tourists, international marriage agencies, sexism and other social, national and international ills.[1][4][5][6][7][8][9] Some of the goals of the organisation are: "To develop leadership, intellectual and moral qualities of the young women in Ukraine" and "To build up the image of Ukraine, the country with great opportunities for women".[3]



[edit]The organization

Female university students between 18 and 20 years old formed the backbone of the movement when it was formed in 2008.[2] In Kiev, there are about 300 active participants in the movement.[10] There are few male members of FEMEN.[1] The group comprises some 20 topless activists and 300 fully clothed members.[11][12] Most of its demonstrations are staged in Kiev,[4][8] but FEMEN has also held actions in cities like Odessa,[13] Dnipropetrovsk[14] and Zaporizhia.[15] The goals of the organization is "to shake women in Ukraine, making them socially active; to organize in 2017 a women's revolution."[10] The group has stated it has enjoyed limited success in pushing its agenda.[16] As of late April 2010 the organisation is contemplating becoming a political party to run for seats in the October 2012 Ukrainian parliamentary election.[1][10]

FEMEN justifies its provocative methods stating "This is the only way to be heard in this country. If we staged simple protests with banners, then our claims would not have been noticed".[17] The organisation plans to become the biggest and the most influential feminist movement in Europe.[3][10]

Some members claim their involvement in FEMEN caused their families to become alienated from them.[10][18]

FEMEN receives small financial backing by individuals[10][11][19] (including DJ Hell[18]).

Facebook initially blocked the FEMEN page because it suspected it was pornographic.[18]

Late April 2011 the organization claimed it was setting up international branches in WarsawZurichRomeTel Aviv and Rio de Janeiro.[20][21] They also claimed that after the early 2010 election of President Viktor Yanukovych the Security Service of Ukraine has attempted to intimidate the FEMEN activists.[18]

FEMEN occasionally holds rallies outside Ukraine.[22][23][24][25][26][27][28]

Several criminal cases have been opened against the organization in Ukraine a.o. on "hooliganism" and "desecration of state symbols"; and they have been fined.[29]


FEMEN protest in Kiev during the2010 Ukrainian presidential election

The movement was founded in 2008 by Anna Hutsol (born 1984, most FEMEN members are younger[2]) after she became attuned to the sad stories of Ukrainian woman duped by false promises from abroad:[2] "I set up FEMEN because I realised that there was a lack of women activists in our society; Ukraine is male-oriented and women take a passive role."[30] Initially Femen gained attention by demonstrating while dressed in underwear: however, in August 2009 Oksana Shachko bared her breasts at a protest in Kiev.[31] Since then Femen have regularly protested 'topless', and the organization has staged noticeable erotically-flavored rallies (among others) near the building of the Cabinet of Ministers, at Maidan Nezalezhnosti, the Turkish embassy in Ukraine[2] and in front of the Iranian embassy to oppose the expected execution of Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani.[32] While most of the protests have been confined to going ‘topless’, in October 2010 Shachko exposed her buttocks outside a locked toilet in a demonstration to protest about the lack of public toilets in Kiev;[11]and four of the group members staged a similar protest in Kiev in February 2011.[33]

Hutsol is adamantly opposed to legalizing prostitution in Ukraine.[2] FEMEN proposed the introduction of criminal responsibility for the use of sex industry services late in May 2009.[34] FEMEN has protested against what they argue are moves being made by the Ukrainian government to legalize prostitution during the EURO 2012 championships.[35] The group asked UEFA and the Ukrainian government to create a social program devoted to the problem ofsex tourism and prostitution in Ukraine; to inform football fans that prostitution is illegal in Ukraine; and to take additional steps to fight against prostitution and sex tourism.[36]

A demonstration by a group called RU FEMEN in the Russian capital Moscow late April 2011[37] was immediately denounced as a fake offspring of FEMEN.[20][21] FEMEN accused Russian political party United Russia of having set up this RU FEMEN.[20][21]

[edit]Cultural and political image

FEMEN's actions received criticisms in Ukraine for "being meaningless" or "being outright tasteless".[11] According to Ukrainian gender studies expert Tetyana Bureychak, most Ukrainian women are unimpressed by FEMEN.[38] According to sociologist Oleh Demkiv of the Lviv University, FEMEN does not enjoy popular support.[39]

According to Reuters "Femen represents -- albeit on a modest scale -- one of the few regular street protest movements".[12] Some parents of FEMEN activists have wondered if they were addicted to drugs.[10] In Ukraine the FEMEN activists have been labeled (in 2010) "girls Tymoshenko" and/or "Putin's agents[10][18][relevant? – discuss]; it must be noted that FEMEN has demonstrated against Putin[40] and the organization never did sympathize with Tymoshenko.[41] The organization claims to be an independent organization "Beyond politics and beyond religion".[10]

The group's actions have been reported in news-outlets such as CNNBBC News,[6] Der SpiegelDie,[3] France 24,[30] on Euronews,[32] Kyiv Post,[42] Mizozo,[43]USA Today,[44] Reuters,[12] The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal.[27]

[edit]See also


  1. a b c d e Femen wants to move from public exposure to political powerKyiv Post (April 28, 2010)
  2. a b c d e f Feminine Femen targets 'sexpats'Kyiv Post (May 22, 2009)
  3. a b c d FEMEN, Organisations MySpace page
  4. a b Keywords:FEMEN, Photo service of UNIAN
  5. ^ High voter turnout in snow, cold shows triumph of democracyKyiv Post (January 21, 2010)
  6. a b Ukraine protest over NZ 'win a wife' competition prizeBBC news (2 March 2011)
  7. ^ Ukraine feminists protest ‘Win a Wife’ competitionKhaleej Times (1 March 2011)
  8. a b (Ukrainian) Ключові слова:FEMEN, Photo service of UNIAN
  9. ^ (Ukrainian) Активістка жіночого руху б'є тортом Олеся Бузину (фото)UNIAN (23 March 2009)
  10. a b c d e f g h i (Ukrainian) Femen: "Ми даємо чиновникам і політикам, проср...тися"Табло ID (September 20, 2010)
  11. a b c d Topless protesters gain fame in UkraineAssociated Press (November 19, 2010)
  12. a b c Ukraine's topless group widens political roleReuters (November 15, 2010)
  13. ^ Events by themes:Protest action of FEMEN in Odessa, Photo service of UNIAN (March 10, 2011)
  14. ^ (Ukrainian) Події за темами:У Дніпропетровську відбулася акція активісток FEMEN з нагоди Міжнародного дня обіймів, Photo service of UNIAN
  15. ^ (Ukrainian) Події за темами:Активістки FEMEN провели в Запоріжжі акцію проти секс-туризму, Photo service of UNIAN (March 7, 2011)
  16. ^ Offbeat Ukrainian Feminist Group Fights Sexism And AuthoritarianismRadio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (July 02, 2011)
  17. ^ “Ukraine is not a bordello”Russia Today (December 14, 2009)
  18. a b c d e 'The Entire Ukraine Is a Brothel'Spiegel Online (5 May 2011)
  19. ^ (Russian) Бюст героевKommersant (September 20, 2010)
  20. a b c (Ukrainian) На FEMEN здiйснена рейдерська атака! Клятi москалi! Перший пост без цицьокUkrayinska Pravda (28 April 2011)
  21. a b c (Russian) Зассанные кремлевские матрасы!LiveJournal blog of FEMEN (28 April 2011)
  22. ^ Keywords: FEMENUNIAN
  23. ^ FEMEN takes its act to ParisKyiv Post (1 November 2011)
  24. ^ FEMEN participate in Berlusconi protestsKyiv Post (2 November 2011)
  25. ^ Huffington Post: FEMEN, Ukrainian women's rights group, protests Russian electionKyiv Post (9 December 2011)
  26. ^ Ukraine topless activists raise SOS from BelarusKyiv Post (20 December 2011)
  27. a b Naked Protesters Draw Attention at Moscow Polling StationThe Wall Street Journal (4 March 2012)
  28. ^ Turkey acts to better protect women from abuseKyiv Post (9 March 2012)
  29. ^ (Russian) На FEMENисток завели два уголовных дела за "обнаженку", Информационно-аналитический центр "ЛІГА" (17 February 2012)
  30. a b How they protest prostitution in UkraineFrance 24 (August 28, 2009)
  31. ^ (French) Femen Les féministes venues du froidParis Match (February 18, 2012)
  32. a b Ukrainian women activists protest against Saknieh executionEuronews (November 4, 2010)
  33. ^ [1] (February 28, 2011)
  34. ^ FEMEN initiates criminal responsibility for using sex industry servicesKyiv Post (May 22, 2009)
  35. ^ "Ukraine women go topless against UEFA, prostitution". 3 November 2011.
  36. ^ "Euro 2012 Without Prostitution: Femen Activists Go Topless Against UEFA". 2 December 2011.
  37. ^ (Russian) Полуголые активистки прошлись по МосквеL!FE NEWS (27 April 2011)
  38. ^ The nude radicals: feminism Ukrainian styleThe Guardian (April 15, 2011)
  39. ^ (Ukrainian) Акції FEMEN — наслідок суспільної нечутливості?Den (July 22, 2011)
  40. ^ FEMEN Protests Topless Against Vladimir Putin And Gazprom (PHOTOS, WARNING: NSFW)The Huffington Post (14 February 2012)
  41. ^ International Women’s Issues: Yulia Tymoshenko and FEMEN: Women, Appearance, and Politics in Ukraine by Mary Anne LimoncelliPersephone Magazine (13 October 2011)
  42. ^ FEMEN coverage on Kyiv PostKyiv Post (May 22, 2009)
  43. ^ Exclusive Interview with FEMEN, (December 22, 2010)
  44. ^ Ukraine's topless protesters gain fame

[edit]External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Femen


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