07 30 2016
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The Wake of Vanport
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  • Russian hackers likely responsible for hacking attack on Clinton HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Giddy if exhausted, Hillary Clinton embarked on a post-convention Rust Belt bus tour just hours after becoming the first female presidential nominee of a major political party. The celebratory mood quickly evaporated amid fresh revelations that hackers had breached a program used by her campaign and Republican nominee Donald Trump promised to sharpen his barbs. "Remember this," Trump said during a rally Friday in Colorado Springs, Colorado. "Trump is going to be no more Mr. Nice Guy." And for the first time he encouraged his supporters' anti-Clinton chants of "lock her up." "I've been saying let's just beat her on Nov. 8," Trump said, "but you know what? I'm starting to agree with you." About an hour later, Clinton aides acknowledged that a hacking attack that exposed Democratic Party emails also reached into a computer system used by her own campaign. The FBI said it was working to determine the "accuracy, nature and scope" of the cyberattacks. Campaign spokesman Nick Merrill said the newly disclosed breach affected a Democratic National Committee data analytics program used by the campaign and other organizations. Outside experts found no evidence that the campaign's "internal systems have been compromised," Merrill said, but he gave no details on the program or nature of the attacks. Partnerships with modern e-commerce companies can allow sophisticated tracking, categorization and identification of website visitors and voters. President Barack Obama and cybersecurity experts have said Russia was almost certainly responsible for the DNC hack. The House Democratic campaign committee reported Friday that its information had been accessed. The developments followed the leaking of DNC emails earlier in the week that pointed to a pro-Clinton bias by party officials during her primary contest against Bernie Sanders. In the furor that followed, party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz resigned just as Democrats launched their convention. Clinton and her running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, will attempt to return attention to their positive economic message on Saturday, with campaign stops through economically struggling areas of Pennsylvania and Ohio. "When we take that oath of office next January, we know we can make life better. We know we can create more good jobs," she told voters gathered at an outside market in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Clinton cited an economic analysis by economist Mark Zandi, a former economic adviser to 2008 Republican presidential nominee John McCain, that found more than 10 million jobs could be created in her first term if her economic proposals were put in place. Zandi's analysis of Trump's plans found they would cost the country 3.5 million jobs and lead to a "lengthy recession." Joined on the bus tour by her husband, Bill Clinton, Kaine and his wife, Anne Holton, Clinton stopped at a toy and plastics manufacturer in Hatfield, Pennsylvania, where she and Kaine cast Trump as a con artist out for his own gain. "We don't resent success in America but we do resent people who take advantage of others in order to line their own pockets," Clinton said. Trump is also focusing on Ohio and Pennsylvania, two states where he might make headway with blue-collar white men. That group of voters has eluded Clinton and may be a hard sell after a Democratic convention that heavily celebrated racial and gender diversity. Clinton is playing up economic opportunity, diversity and national security. Democrats hammered home those themes this week with an array of politicians, celebrities, gun-violence victims, law enforcement officers and activists of all races and sexual orientation. Their goal is to turn out the coalition of minority, female and young voters that twice elected Obama while offsetting expected losses among the white men drawn to Trump's message. Democrats continued contrasting their optimistic message with the more troubled vision of the state of the nation presented by Trump and others at the GOP convention a week earlier. Kaine called the "very dark and negative" event a "journey through Donald Trump's mind." "That's a very frightening place," he told thousands of supporters in Philadelphia. Clinton told voters that they faced a "stark choice," calling the coming election the most important one in her lifetime. "This is a moment of reckoning for our country. I don't recognize the country that Donald Trump describes," she said.___Lemire reported from Colorado Springs, Colorado. Associated Press writer Eric Tucker in Washington contributed to this report.
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  • SEATTLE (AP) — Genetically modified wheat not approved for sale or commercial production in the United States has been found growing in a field in Washington state, agriculture officials said Friday, posing a possible risk to trade with countries concerned about engineered food. The Food and Drug Administration says genetically modified organisms, or GMOs, are safe and little scientific concern exists about the safety of those on the market. But critics say not enough is known about their risks, and they want GMOs labeled so people know what's in their food. Several Asian countries temporarily banned U.S. wheat imports after genetically modified wheat was found unexpectedly in a field on an Oregon farm in 2013. It also popped up in a field at a university research center in Montana in 2014. It wasn't immediately clear how altered wheat cropped up in Washington. But the U.S. Agriculture Department said there is no evidence it has entered the market. If it did, the FDA concluded that "it is unlikely that the wheat would present any safety concerns if present in the food supply," the department said. A farmer discovered 22 plants in an unplanted field, and the wheat was developed to be resistant to the herbicide known as Roundup, created by seed giant Monsanto, the USDA said. An agency spokeswoman did not know where in the state it was found. Federal officials said they were working with the farmer to ensure that none of the modified wheat is sold. Out of caution, the agency said it is holding and testing the farmer's full wheat harvest, but so far it has not found GMOs. The plants are a type of wheat that had been evaluated in limited field trials in the Pacific Northwest from 1998 to 2001 but never commercialized, Monsanto said in a statement. It said the type found in Washington state is similar to the one discovered in Oregon three years ago; it has the same inserted DNA but in a different location. No variety of genetically engineered wheat has been approved for commercial use or production in the U.S. GMOs are plants or animals that have had genes copied from other plants or animals inserted into their DNA. Most genetically engineered crops are corn and soybeans eaten by livestock or made into popular processed food ingredients like cornstarch, soybean oil or high fructose corn syrup. Only a handful of modified fruits and vegetables are available, including Hawaiian papaya, some zucchini and squash and a small percentage of sweet corn. The FDA also has approved for consumption a genetically engineered salmon that would grow faster than traditional salmon, but it's not yet available in grocery stores. South Korea said Friday that it will inspect U.S. wheat imports for genetically modified wheat, the Yonhap News Agency reported. The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said it has asked the USDA for information on the unapproved wheat and inspection methods. The USDA said it has validated a test that Monsanto developed for the herbicide-resistant wheat, which would be available to trading partners. "Trading partners will get the tests. I believe that once they have those in place, they'll continue buying," said Glen Squires, CEO of the Washington Grain Commission, a state agency that represents wheat farmers. "We don't anticipate any major disruptions." The USDA also said it has beefed up oversight of genetically engineered field trials and now requires developers to apply for a permit for those involving GMO wheat starting this year. In 2014, genetically modified wheat plants were found at a university research center in Huntley, Montana, where it was legally tested by Monsanto in the early 2000s. The plants in eastern Oregon were found in a field that had never conducted such tests, and the USDA closed its investigation two years ago unable to determine how the wheat got there. Different strains were found in each state. The Washington Association of Wheat Growers and the Washington State Agriculture Department referred questions to federal authorities.
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  • Six current or former state employees were charged Friday with misconduct and other crimes in the Flint water crisis 
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  • Hillary Clinton cast herself as a unifier for divided times, an experienced leader steeled for a volatile world 
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Award-winning filmmaker, Keith Beauchamp found his calling while making his first documentary about Emmett Louis Till, the 14-year-old Black boy who was abducted and tortured to death in August of 1955 for allegedly whistling at a white woman. The suspects subsequently arrested for the lynching were all acquitted by an all white jury.

That heart-wrenching story of a young boy, beaten, shot, and thrown in a river, ignited the early civil rights movement. Decades later, the case was re-opened by the FBI because Keith Beauchamp uncovered new information in the course of his research for The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till.

Bolstered by his ability to connect with potential witnesses who otherwise might not come forward in communities where such Civil Rights crimes have occurred, Beauchamp has become a passionate advocate for survivors seeking justice for victims and has assisted the FBI by developing new leads for some of the still unsolved cases from this shameful troubled chapter in American history.

For his new TV series, The Injustice Files, Beauchamp combs through records; interviews family members, witnesses and investigators; and pieces together the known facts of each case. Beauchamp also attempts to interview potential suspects and individuals who may know who was responsible for these murders, sometimes confronting them in their driveways after attempts to contact them for interviews prove unsuccessful.

Here, director/producer/host Beauchamp talks about The Injustice Fileswhich airs on the Investigation Discovery Network. (Check local listings for airtimes, or visit: http://investigation.discovery.com/tv/injustice-files/episode-guide.html)  


Kam Williams: Hi Keith, thanks for the time.

Keith Beauchamp: Thank you Mr. Williams, for giving me another opportunity to share my work with you and the public.

KW:What gave you the idea for The Injustice Files?

KB: The Injustice Files is an extension of my previous work profiling Civil Rights murders from the 1950s and 1960s. It's my third TV production produced in collaboration with the FBI's Civil Rights Cold Case Initiative that began in 2007.

KW: Tell me a little about the series?

KB: The series is a 3-part docu- series produced by CBS News' heavyweight, Susan Zirinsky and Eye Too Productions and premiered on Investigation Discovery. It follows the investigative efforts of myself and the FBI's Civil Rights Unit Chief, Cynthia Deitle. There are three unsolved civil rights murders from the 1960s, of Wharlest Jackson, Oneal Moore and William Lewis Moore, that we hope to get solved.

KW: How hard was it to get the series off the ground, given the popular notion of America being post-racial?

KB: It's challenging to get a project of this nature green-lighted for TV. When I walk into a network, I always have to prove why this project is so important for this day and time. When you speak about Injustices and the Civil Rights Movement, many feel that it's a thing of the past and it's a black issue, but in reality it's an American issue. These are murders that need to be solved to help bring justice and closure for the victims' families and we have all benefited from the American Civil Rights Movement. Racism still exists in this country and to forget our past we are doomed to repeat it.

KW: Do you ever feel concerned about your own safety while reopening these cases?

KB: Dr. King once stated, "If a man hasn't discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live." This is a quote that I use everyday of my life investigating these murders, so my own safety has never been a concern. Although, I'm completely aware of the dangers that exist, I fear no man but God.

KW: Are you getting support from the federal and local authorities when you are able to identify a perpetrator who is still alive?

KB: Yes, that's what makes this new project so exceptional. It was done with the full participation of the FBI and these cases are active investigations. It's the first project of its kind where you have a filmmaker and the FBI working side by side for a common goal, which is to get justice and closure for the families and the communities stricken with this pain. 

KW: How do you want viewers to react to episodes of Injustice Files?

KB: I want people to understand that these murders need immediate attention. This is not just about learning our history; we need to solve these murders. As each day passes, perpetrators and witnesses to these murders die off. So, it's a race against time to get justice for those who paved the way for us to exist in this 'free society' and for their families. 

KW:Is there any question no one ever asks you, that you wish someone would?

KB: Yes. Have I ever received financial and moral support from prominent African-Americans? 

KW: The Columbus Short question: Are you happy?

KB: Wow, that's a hard question. Considering the type of work I'm doing, it does have its downside. Dealing with death daily can really play on your mind and you find yourself often in dark places. I'm happy when I'm in the field working and producing my work. I still haven't found a way to balance my personal and business life because I eat and breathe this work day in and day out. There are so many families who need help. I often joke that I will need some serious therapy when I'm done.

KW:The Teri Emerson question: When was the last time you had a good laugh?

KB: It's really hard to say. I try to entertain myself by watching TV from time to time and my last laugh I would have to say watching old reruns of Sanford and Son. I'm a huge fan of old African-American sitcoms.

KW: What is your guiltiest pleasure?

KB: Riding in my SUV with the sunroof and windows open with music blasting.

KW: The bookworm Troy Johnson question: What was the last book you read?

KB: Unfortunately, I haven't had time to read any books for pleasure but the last book I've read was Investigative Discourse Analysis by Don Rabon. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0890895694/ref=nosim/thslfofire-20  

It teaches interviewing and interrogation techniques which come in very handy with the work that I do.

KW:The music maven Heather Covington question: What are you listening to on your iPod? 

KB: People say I have an old soul. I love to listen to Sam Cooke and Curtis Mayfield for inspiration, and to Kanye West and Southern Hip-Hop to get my blood pumping before I go out to investigate murders. I guess it's my way of keeping in touch with both the past and the present.

KW:What is your favorite dish to cook?

KB: Well, I'm from Louisiana, so I will have to say I'm known for cooking great Gumbo.

KW:The Uduak Oduok question: Who is your favorite clothes designer?

KB: At this point in my life, I wear many labels that help me look my best, but my favorite would have to be Gucci.

KW: When you look in the mirror, what do you see?

KB: When I look in the mirror, I see a man with a lot of potential to change minds and inspire, but not enough time. I'm still searching for higher knowledge of man and I'm not ashamed to admit I have room to do better.

KW: If you could have one wish instantly granted, what would that be for?

KB: That I might become successful enough doing this work to be able to fully take care of my parents who have sacrificed so much for me and my career.

KW:The Ling-Ju Yen question: What is your earliest childhood memory?

KB: My earliest childhood memory, which I speak about often, is when I first saw the photograph of Emmett Till at age 10 in Jet Magazine. I can honestly tell you, if it wasn't for the murder of Emmett Till and seeing that photograph, I would not be a filmmaker today.

KW: The Nancy Lovell Question: Why do you love doing what you do?

KB: I love doing this work, because I've seen in my lifetime the fruits of my labor. My biggest accomplishments was the production of my first film, "The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till" which took me nine years to produce, and getting his half-century old murder case reopened in 2004. It's rewarding to know that I have the power to alter history and to undo some of the wrongs of our past by using the powerful medium of filmmaking. It is truly a blessing to receive emails and letters of encouragement almost daily regarding my work letting me know that I'm impacting lives and inspiring others.

KW: The Zane Question: Do you have any regrets?

KB: My only regret is not being able to focus on my own personal life. Since I've been doing this work – I've been in and out of relationships and haven't been able to spend enough quality time with family. I'm the blame for that. I'm married to my work but I know that in time, the Creator will open a door for me to finally focus on myself.

KW: The DuléHill question. Do you think that the success you've achieved in your career is because of you, because of a higher power, or because of a mixture of both?  

KB: I wouldhave to say that my success is a mixture of both but the majority is driven by my faith and a higher power. I realized that early on when I discovered that the work that I do is my calling in life. I'm guided by the spirit of our ancestors and I never fight that spiritual connection.

KW: What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome?

KB: The biggest obstacle that I had to overcome is doubting myself and hesitating to follow my gut instinct. There's so much negative energy at times when you are trying to do good that it's hard to become motivated to move forward.

KW: The Flex Alexander question: How do you get through the tough times?

KB: It's still a learning process for me. Being that I am a self-made indie filmmaker that didn't have any training, I continue to look for ways to reinvent myself to make a living. Civil Rights Activists will tell you that doing this type of work does not come with a steady pay check and that's my reality. But I have learned that prayer, meditation and frequently speaking to my mother helps me to stay focused and on the right path.

KW:The Rudy Lewis question: Who's at the top of your hero list?

KB: My parent's would have to be first, because they instilled in me the value of speaking for those who can no longer speak for themselves, for the young and the old and those who have been affected by injustice. Secondly, without a shadow of a doubt would be the mother of Emmett Till, the late Mamie Till- Mobley who I worked with for 8-years until she passed away in 2003. She was the most influential person I every met and she continues to have a major influence on my life. The remarkable courage and dedication she had from the moment of Emmett's murder until the day she passed away will forever be a part of my psyche.

KW: The Dr. Cornel West question: What price are you willing to pay for a cause that is bigger than your own self interest?

KB: I'm paying that price now, I was 23-years old when I started working on my first film that focused on the murder of Emmett Till and I'm 39-years old now still producing the same type of work. At times I feel that I'm running with the last of the dinosaurs, but I must push on because this mission is a much bigger cause than my own.  Besides, the spirit in me won't allow me to stop.

KW:What advice do you have for anyone who wants to follow in your footsteps?

KB: I will have to say follow your passion and learn perseverance. Fighting social injustice is a full time job which has many ups and downs. To be successful in your quest you must be persistent and believe in yourself no matter what people tell you. I'm a true testament of what one person can do to spark change and I know I won't be the last.

KW: The Tavis Smiley question: How do you want to be remembered? What do you want your legacy to be, and where are you in relation to that at this point in your life?

KB:  I want people to remember me as someone who was dedicated to the cause and who was able to become a 'freedom conductor,' sparking change in his own way - a true example of the power that one holds, but understanding that there is still much to be done.

KW: Thanks again for another great interview, Keith, and best of luck with Injustice Files.

KB: Thank you, Mr. Williams for your time and the opportunity.

To see a trailer forThe Injustice Files, visit The Skanner's YouTube Channel


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