tv Democracy Now LINKTV December 1, 2021 4:00pm-5:01pm PST
12/01/21 12/01/21 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] amy: from new york, this is democracy now! >> i, senator purnell, sam, do swear that i will truly serve in the office of president, so help me god. amy: barbados has become the world's newestepublic, breaking ties with queen elizabeth 55 years after it became an independent nations. calls are now growing for
britain to pay reparations for centuries of slavery and colonialism. we will go to bridgetown, barbados, for the latest. then we look at world aids day. >> to think about them more than 700,00people who died of aids in the united states and the 35 million to 49 people who died glally, but we alswant to think about more tha800 thound people have aeady di of covid-19 in the united states, surpassing the number of pele who have died of hiv/aids. we want to think about what it means that so much death and suffering has been compressed into less than two years. amy: at first, workers at an amazon warehouse in alabama make it a chance to decide whether to unionize. that national labor relations board has ordered a new election after he ruled amazon had interviewed in the first election in part by pressuring the u.s. postal service to
install a mailbox outside the warehouse one day before the voting was set to begin. >> workers truly believed something is going on with this mailing box. why would amazon want them to bring balance from home and bring it to the plant and put it in their mailbox when they can just literally put it back in their own mailbox? amy: all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. the omicron coronavirus variant has been identified in at least 20 countries as more governments move to impose travel bans and other restrictions to curb its spread. this comes as new evidence shows the highly mutated variant was present in the netherlands at least several days before it was first detected and reported to the world by south africa. two flights on dutch airline klm
may have been superspreader events for the omicron variant. in other coronavirus news, an fda panel voted by a narrow margin to endorse the use of merck's antiviral covid-19 pill. the oral treatment, which was shown in trials to reduce severe illness and death, could be approved for patient use within days and available within weeks. in legal news, a federal judge has blocked the biden administration's vaccine mandate for health workers. the requirement was scheduled to take effect from next week. in michigan, a 15-year-old student opened firat oxford high school near detroit, killing three students and injuring another eight. the three students who were fatally shot were 14, 16, and 17. the suspect is now in custody but no motives for the rampage have been released. it was the 651st mass shooting in the u.s. this year according to the gun violence archive. in washington, d.c., connecticut senator chris murphy blasted his
republican colleagues on the senate floor for blocking gun control legislation. >> at the very moment that moms and dads in michigan were being told their kids were not coming home because they were shot at school due to a country that has accepted violence, due to republicans loyalty to the gun lobby. do not lecture us about the sanctity, importance of life when 100 people every single day are losing their lives to guns. when kids go to school fearful they will not return home because a classmate will turn a gun on them. when it is in our control whether this happens. amy: the father of the 15-year-old shooter in michigan had bought the gun he used several days before. in other gun control news, a federal court in california upheld the state's ban on high-capacity magazines tuesday. further challenges to the california law could see the case brought before the u.s. supreme court. on tuesday, the house select committee investigating the
january 6 capitol insurrection questioned georgia secretary of state brad raffensperger, whom then-president trump called in january asking him to find some 11,000 votes that would put him ahead of biden in georgia's election tally. raffensperger refused to help trump overturn the results. the committee is expected to move forward today with criminal contempt proceedings against former justice department official jeffrey clark for refusing to comply with a committee subpoena. the full house would then have to vote in favor of sending the matter to the justice department for prosecution. meanwhile, mark meadows, the former white house chief-of-staff under trump, has handed over documents to the house committee and will testify before the panel. in related news, meadows has revealed in his upcoming memoir that trump tested positive for covid-19 three days before his first debate with joe biden in september 2020 but went on to the debate and other public
events without revealing his positive test publicly. revoking farc as a terrorist organization. it's been five years since the farc and colombian government signed a peace accord after five decades of conflict. u.s. secretary of state antony blinken said removing the terrorist designation would facilitate the u.s. to support and implementing the accord. new report published by human anew report published by human rights watch says taliban forces have executed or forcibly disappeared over 100 former afghan security forces since taking over the country in august. the report documents the killings of at least 47 former members the ahan national security fors who had surrendered or were prehended by the taliban between august and october in four provinces. at least another 53 former security force members were also killed. in a statement, human rights watch said -- "the taliban leadership's promised amnesty has not stopped local commanders from summarily
executing or disappearing former afghan security force members. the burden is on the taliban to prevent further killings, hold those responsible to account, and compensate the victims' families." a warning to our audience, this story contains descriptions of violence. in germany, a frankfurt court has convicted a former member of the islamic state of committing genocide against iraq's minority yazidi community. taha al-jumailly was also found guilty of crimes against humanity and war crimes. he was sentenced to life in prison. the landmark trial involved the killing of a five-year-old girl who al-jumailly bought as a slave, along with her mother, in 2015 in syria. they were then taken to the iraqi city of fallujah. the girl died after being chained and left in the hot sun without water. the mother survived captivity and testified at the trial. the landmark trial is the first time a person has been convicted for the role in the brutal persecution carried out by the islamic state of the yazidi religious minority, a kurdish-speaking group.
the u.n. denounced as genocide. french president emmanuel macron inducted american-born, pioneering performer, and civil rights icon josephine baker into the pantheon, considered france's highest tribute. josephine baker is the first black woman at first american to receive the honor. this came on the same day that far right xenophobic writer and pundit announced he would run for president. he has repeatedly attacked islam, immigrants on the left and relied on his usual racist talking points in a video announcing his candidacy. >> you have not moved yet feel like you're no longer at home. you have not left her country, but it is as if your country has left you. you feel like you are a foreigner in your own country. you are exiled from within. amy: back in the united states
group of democratic lawmakers , a held a news conference tuesday amid the outrage over anti-muslim attacks by congressmember lauren boebert and other republicans against congressmember ilhan omar. omar again called on republican leadership to hold party members accountable for their dangerous rhetoric. >> the truth is is that islamophobia pervades our culture, our politics, and even policy decisions. cable news hosts, leading politicians in the republican party routinely espouse hateful rhetoric about a religion that includes a diverse group, more than a billion peaceful rshipers around the world. amy: congressmember omar als played a threatening, profanity-laden voicemil she
received this week. >> you will not live much longer bitch. i can almost guarantee that. amy: the call came after boebert refused to apologize for making islamophobic statements including calling omar a member of the "jihad squad." talking about her wearing a backpack, concern she would not be wearing a backpack. in 2018, ilhan omar became the first somali-american and one of the first two muslim women elected to congress. the supreme court is hearing arguments today in a pivotal case that could overturn the landmark 1973 roe v. wade ruling and the constitutionally protected right to have an abortion. the case, dobbs v. jackson women's health organization, is a challenge to mississippi's 15-week abortion ban. reproductive rights defenders are demonstrating in front of the supreme court today. cnn has indefinitely suspended
star anchor chris cuomo for advising his brother, disgraced former new york governor andrew cuomo, on his response to mounting accusations of sexual harassment. in a statement, cnn said documents released monday by new york attorney general letitia james revealed chris cuomo had "a greater level of involvement than we previously knew." the cnn repeatedly offered advice and assistance, including using his contacts to check on the status of upcoming articles about then-governor cuomo. in minnesota, jury selection began tuesday in the manslaughter trial of white, former police officer kimberly potter, who in april fatally shot daunte wright, a 20-year-old black man and father in brooklyn center. potter can be heard in body cam video shouting "taser" multiple times before she killed wright. the police officers initially pulled daunte wright over for minor traffic violations, including an air freshener hanging from the car's rearview mirror.
in california, a new report estimates at least 1500 unhoused people died on los angeles streets from the start of the pandemic to july 2021. the most common cause of death was accidental overdose. in related news in new york, city officials announced the opening of at least two supervised drug injection sites in manhattan. the locations are for clean needles to administer in opioid reversal medication, provide medical care, and drug dependency treatment options. the advocates have long fought for better and safer resources for people with addiction. the government approved facilities are the first of their kind in the country and are aimed at fighting a rise in overdose deaths. u.s. overdose deaths topped 100,000 over a year period ending in april, a record number. warning to our audience, this story contains descriptions of child sexual violence.
and phil saviano has died, a survivor of clergy sex abuse and a whistleblower who was pivotal in bringing to light decades of sexual assaults by catholic priests. the scandal led to the resignation of boston's cardinal bernard law in 2002 and the church settling with hundreds of survivors. saviano's story was featured in the 2015 oscar-winning film "spotlight" on "the boston globe" investigative team that helped expose scores of cases of priests sexually assaulting children. phil saviano was 69 years old. and those are some of the headlines. this is democracy now, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman in new york, joined by my co-host juan gonzález in new brunswick, new jersey. hi, juan. juan: hi, amy. welcome to all of our listeners and viewers from around the country and around the world. amy: on black friday, one of the year, the day after thanksgiving, amazon employs worldwide joined in a strike that targeted that trillion
dollar company and its founder billionaire jeff bezos under the banner "make amazon pay." they called to raise wages, pay taxes in full, stop surveillance of workers. this comes as workers at an amazon warehouse in bessemer, alabama, may soon get another chance to decide whether to unionize. the national labor relations board has ordered a new election after it ruled amazon had interfered in the first election in part by pressuring the u.s. postal service to install a mailbox outside the warehouse one day before the voting was set to begin. amazon managers then pressured workers to drop their ballots in the new collection box, casting doubt over the secrecy of the election. retail wholesale and department store union is leading organizing campaign in bessemer. stuart appelbaum said in a statement the new ruling "confirms what we were saying all along -- that amazon's intimidation and interference prevented workers from having a
fair say in whether they wanted a union in the workplace." in march, we spoke with the member organizer of the retail, wholesale, and department store union. >> workers truly believe something is going on with this mailing box that why would amazon want them to bring their ballots from home and bring it to the plant and put it in their mailbox when they can just literally put it back in their own mailbox? people called me and asked me if amazon was stealing some of the ballots because they have seen people put their ballots in their mailbox and it is just really scary. i believe it is in intimidation, so to speak. amy: new york attorney general james sought an emergency court order tuesday to force the company to implement stricter
covid-19 protocols, saying amazon is prioritizing profit over worker safety during a pandemic and retaliated against employees who raised concerns about their safety. in another court order, james said amazon should be read are to rehire its employee chris smalls was fired after he spoke out about working conditions. for more, we're joined by alex press, staff writer at jacobin and host of a podcast about amazon workers. welcome back to democracy now! can you talk about this historic moment where the nlrb is now apparently calling for a second election, saying amazon interfered with the first election in bessemer, alabama, at their warehouse? describe what you know with this point and what happened. >> thank you for having me, amy. this week the regional director of region 10, which oversees bessemer's election, has ruled they should rerun the election.
the objections we many that the union filed over improper behavior. the voting took place in february and march and when the votes were counted in april, a clear majority of those pallets were against unionizing. the probm with tt mailbox specifically. the amazon had gotten usps to set up a mailbox in the parking lot outside the warehouse. amazon had been pushing for an in-person vote but the nlrb ruled against that with a height of covid. this mailbox was seen as an attempt to get around that. it was under a tent that had all sorts of ha unit slogans on it. it was within spitting distance of the surveillance cameras. as a person earlier said, the workers felt they were being surveilled. the nlrb officer agreed. in the ruling this week they wrote amazon had created the impression of surveillance and
had contravened the authority of the agency. even more concerning had shown control over usps as well, which was tasked with making sure the ballots were not interfered with. this was a violation of what the nlrb said, cannot have sloganeering at a polling site. you can't have the employer counting or semi to count and control the ballots. those photos are being set aside and it is likely rerun will happen in the spring. it is unear if it will be a person or mail-in. amazon can request the board review this really a good but odds are hearing officer in august who had overseen the election recommended a rerun. this week the regional director conferred with the agreement. similarly ordered a reelection. the workers were correct. something was going on. very concerning for all of us that amazon could pressure a public agency, usps, to install a mailbox. juan: alex, i wanted to ask
whether amazon has the opportunity to appeal since this was a regional director's decision to the nlrb in washington and the likelihood of that? >> yes, so they have 10 business days to request a review. the new board can either agree with the existing ruling and reject the appeal and go forward, or it can agree to contravene this regional director. i would say odds are this is not going to change, that there will be an election in the spring. but amazon does have 10 business days to request review. we can expect they will request that review. juan: last friday, black friday, amazon workers in over 20 countries took part in either strikes, protest delivery drivers in italy, garment workers in cambodia and bangladesh -- most of these were workers for third-party companies hired by amazon.
you explain what happened in these protests and the impact on amazon of this growing global coalition of its workers? >> yes. to make -- the make amazon pay coalition is a global listen to fight back against amazon at the level that amazon operates, which is global. it is not limited to u.s. orders . black has become a day of protest. it spread this year to 20 countries. that is because amazon workers -- if their quotas go up, injury rates go up, they worked harder than ever during the holiday season while amazon makes record profits. they have taken back this fake holiday to stage protests. this year was up and down the supply line, all across borders. delivery drivers in italy struck. while they are not directly employed by amazon, they are an integral part of amazon operations.
it is using them to get its goods to customers. they're pretty central to the operation. there were garment workers and degradation cambodia who continued their campaigns to get severance they are out of some $3.6 million. that shut dow -- that factory supplies goods for amazon. think of amazon is a marketplace or platform for third-party sellers but this point amazon produces many of its own goods and sells a lot of them. those were their garments being made in those factories. the protests also existed at the level of the proposed africa amazon headquarters in cape town, south africa. communities are concerned about the development project. there was a protest outside an oil refinery in argentina because amazon web services come
the backbone of the internet as it were, which makes the majority of amazon's profit, they work a lot with big oil. so these concerns are not st about work ice conditions, but about amazon's impact on the entire planet, the climate, so on and so forth, the lack of taxes being paid. one of the people organizing this who works for the progressive international, he told me he saw a direct comparison between even the cambodian and bangladeshi plays and those in bessemer. in their former reminiscent struggles with the -- [indiscernible] if amazon is trying to beat the world, it is bringing disparate sets of workers and activists and communities together to fight against them. amy: i want to go to a short video created by the make amazon pay coalition released last week the global black friy protes announcing the gbal black
friday protests and strikes. >> new germany, office employees are put der enormous presse, ignong labor ls. stress is everywre. >>he facto fired up in april 2020 and paid me only 700 plus per my 15 years of work. amy: gary have the clip most of alex, as you have written, we are talking about amazon having a global supply chain and so the protests are global. let's talk about the significance of the unionization of this one warehouse in bessemer, really, for the world, what it means. we are talking about a company, amazon, the second largest private where in the u.s., around 950,000 workers. what would it mean if the union won? >> people might look at this and
say it is just one site, a few thousand workers. it is a lot of people, but nothing compared to the million that amazon and place in the country. but that is not the case. once workers get a foothold into a place, that spreads quickly. we are seeing something similar as starbucks. the company is going all out. howard schultz came and spoke to the workers. the ceos of starbucks north america are showing up. that is because employers understand once workers see they have power, that spreads rapidly. amazon is complete predicated on total exploitation of workers, complete dictatorial control over the working conditions. this is what amazon innovates. they have driven down the standards, ramped up surveillance. if there is any pushback, if workers have any right to push back and negotiate working conditions, that is an existential threat for amazon.
one thing we have not discussed is that amazon, while it seems you've broken the law in bessemer, much of what he did was legal. spending money on antiunion law firm to come in and train management on how to defeat the union -- that is legal. amazon is spending an immense amount of money on that. it has done it again and the lead up to this expected ruling from the nlrb. amazon does not want this. it is not necessarily about you can afford higher wages or something like that the workers would win with the union contract, it is about power itself. it is about contending that pictorial control on which it runs and profits. juan: alex, you mentioned amazon web services are the most ofitablpart of the company, but most people are not aware of this aspect of amazon's work, this enormous farms of data processing that amazon has
established around the country and the world. could you explain a little more abt that? >> yeah. it is very hidden. we see stories about the warehouse workers, but aws is a complex beast. these data centers are literally hidden. it is hard to access them. it is about us sing the product. our data and our usage of internet of every platform you use, most of them are running through aws. amazon has this trick in his back pocket in that it is very hard to get any -- it is not like warehouse workers can organize those facilities. to make amazon pay coalition was protesting the oil refinery in places like that, but this is a complex beast. amazon's business model is about becoming infrastructure. it wants to become -- it has
succeeded in becoming infrastructure for internet. there antitrust law. it is thought amazon would spin offaws to separate entity from its delivery and warehouse operation but it is definitely the case that people should talk a lot more about aws because that is where amazon gets its bread and butter, gets its most profits, and where it has really sunk into that marrow society and hard to avoid a. amy: the teamsters union, what are the largest in the country, consists of over 1.4 million members, just finished an election last week for a new president and they voted in sean o'ien, who has beenpenly crital about leadership bei too timid and amazon organizing and ups. o is sean o'brn? how could his teamster presidency affect organizing when he takes office in march? >> i'm glad you asked because
that is a big part of that contact we talk about organizing amazon, especially in the united states. this is historic. it is backed by the teamsters for a democratic union. it is pretty shocking and finally won [captioning made possible by democracy now!] . th been ying to ke out the hoffa slate for a long me. sean 'ien had once beeone of theoffa guys. the falling t between hiand hoffa happen between the last ups negotiations. there's about a quarter among people who are covered by the contract. the last round in 2018 the teamsters leadership push through a very bad contract, a tiered contract. there are certain workers who get worse standards than others, which is a death sentence for a
union. the majority of the members had voted down the contract, but a very secure rule in the teamsters constitution allowed leadership t to push it through. sean o'brien was a dissident in that process. he insisted on writing the opposition into the negotiating room. hoffa took him off the team. that is when this break happened. this is a big deal. sean is not a radical but he is willing to strike ups and that was a big part of his campaign was that there needs to be a stronger contract. that goes hand-in-hand with organizing amazon. if you have the strong workforce, those workers can push for better standards across the industry was not there in a place to win amazon workers to a union by demonstrating the benefits of that. that is the key because the teamsters at the convention this year said they would focus on organizing amazon. putting resources into that post training rank-and-file workers amongst the membership in how to
organize workers in a community or near the workplaces. so having leadership that has taken that seriously is a big deal. that is a key for the next couple of years is what organizing amortizing -- amazon and u.s. will look like. amy: thank you for being with us, alex press, staff writer at jacobin and host of a podcast about amazon workers. as barbados becomes the world's newest republic, 55 years after became an independent nation, calls are going for britain to pay rep. rouzer: -- reparations. we will go to barbados for the latest. ♪♪ [music break]
at a ceremony late monday night, dame sandra mason was sworn in as the first president of the caribbean island. >> possessing a clear sense of who we are and what you're capable of achieving in the year 2021, we now turn toward the new republic. we do this so that we may seize the full substance of our sovereignty. amy: barbados became an independent country 55 years ago in 1966, but queen elizabeth remained the official head of state until now. many other former british colonies, including canada, australia, and jamaica, still have a similar arrangement with the british monarch. barbados' prime minister mia mottley had pushed to cut ties to the queen, saying it was time for barbados to break from its colonial past. the move comes as calls grow for the united kingdom to pay slavery reparations to barbados.
ahead of the ceremony, barbados held a national service of thanksgiving, where barbados senator and reverend john rogers spoke. >> one that survived a journey that many should not have survived. survived 300 years of a plantation system that many should not have survived. every child born on it this country is a gift of god, especially preserved, especially protected. amy: prince charles attended. he acknowledged britain's "appalling atrocity of slavery" in the caribbean. barbadian singer, actress, and fashion designer rihanna also attended the ceremony, where she was declared a national hero by barbados' prime minister. we go now to bridgetown, the capital of barbados, where we are joined by david comissiong, barbados' ambassador to the caribbean community, or caricom.
longtime advocate for reparations, author of the book "it's the healing of the nation: the case for reparations in an era of recession and re-colonization." david, welcome to democracy now! it is great to have you with us. can you talk about the ceremony on monday night and what it meant, certainly far beyond simply a ceremony, the new republic of our beto's? >> it was a very historic and moving occasion. for me it started on saturday, well before monday night, when they officially opened a revolutionary square. it was a whole weekend of really celebrating the best of our heritage and our historical tradition. of course, monday night is when
they installed the new president of our beto's. -- barbados. it was the night on which we bid farewell the british colonial rule. that was symbolized in a very concrete way when the colors, the flag of the military unit [indiscernible] the general colors were marched off of the parade grounds in view of prince charles to the playing of auld lang syne, that a new order was being installed. very moving. very historic. i would say 65 years overdue. it really should've happened on the 30th of november, 1966, when barbados became an independent country. but back then, for whatever
reason -- there are many reasons we can speculate about -- made a few come from isis on our constitution, sovereignty, and independence. in 2005 we broke the legal system a live from the british council aninstalled our caribbean court of justice. a second compromise on monday when we moved away -- not just from the queen, but also the concept, any concept of hereditary rule, our own native -- president put in place by democratic process. juan: ambassador, what continues to be the legacy of 400 years of british colonial rule? close the lacy is sti there. we are still a work in progress.
barbados is known as little england. britain's mother colony in the caribbean. the virginia colony was established in 1607. barbados from 1625. because of the sugar revolution was really pioneered in barbados and the whole system of slavery -based citation production was pioneered and perfected in barbados. the seminal slavery laws of the itish empire where the 1661 barbados slave code was taken to jamaica and then from jamaica to the carolinas and across the 13 colonies. so barbados was a center of british power, economic power,
political power, military power, cultural power. historians tell you around the turn of the 18th century, little barbados was more important in trade to britain than new england, south carolina, new york combined. it sounds crazy in the 21st century, but back then, sugar was like a narcotic drug. so barbados developed this system, the production of superabundant profits on super expectation of african labor. -- exploitation of african labor. you don't get rid of the imprint of that history so easily. the colonial era in land worship in barbados, it was landless --
we can see the imprint of those years in the current population. barbados probably has the highest incident in the world of diabetes and hypertension, the product of centuries of living in a high-pressure environment plantations which were the world's first concentration camps, and being subject and extremely diets. you look at the roots begin national and political order -- you look at the world international and political order. those in the caribbean, inserted in the nional order in a structurally subordinate and exploit native manner. many remnants of those centuries
of enslavement, colonial exportation and domination still trying to undo. juan: the whole issue of reparations. what are the prospects of possibilities of continuing to press and win some form of reparations, especially in light of the fact the british empire, having been one of the biggest in world history with so many still commonwealth or former colonies, the precedent that would set for the united kingdom? >> yeah, well, you know, when you have a cause that is just and righteous and rooted in law, you're confident. but it means you must pursue it with passion and determination. barbados is part of the
caribbean community. that is an organization of 15 member states and five associate members. associate members are still british colonies. the member states, 14 are independent nations -- jamaica, guyana, etc. the caribbean community really laid the foundation for its reparation claim way back in 2001 at the united nations world conference against -- we consciously embraced that conference is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to pursue reparations. under the issue of reparations and international agenda. 12 years later in 2013, our heads of government came
together in a mmit and agreed that we are going to lunch reparations claim called native genocide or the genocide against the indigenous come original orders of the caribbean, and for african enslavement. we're going to launch that claim not only against britain, but against all of the european powers that were implicated in the genocide in african enslavement. we established a caricom reparation commission. that commission is guided by a mysterious subcommittee on reparations headed by the prime minister of barbos. we have made our claims to the national government of western europe, including britain. needless to say, our initial approach to them has not elicited a positive response. we said, look, this is history.
this is what you did. he systematically underdeveloped , you siphoned off our resources for generations. the fruits of the labor of our ancestors siphoned off to the capitals of europe most of you can't simply walk away with your ill-gotten gains. you must come back to the scene of the crime, sit down with us, and let us discuss seeking help to repair some of the damage you have done. amy: ambassador -- >> they have not responded thus far. we know it is going to be a struggle. our idea is we must develop any international mass movement, similar in size and scope and power to the anti-apartheid movement of the 1970's and 1980's. it is a work in progress. amy: ambassador, this is prince
charles speaking at the official ceremony tuesday in bridtown, barbados. >> of the new beginning, but also marks a point on a continuum, long rd which you have built. from the darkest days of our past and the appalling atrocity of slavery, which forever stains are history. amy: i know it was even controversial for him to be a part of the ceremony. i think there was an organized protest. they were not permitted on the grounds of whatever covid safety. that your final message to prince charles, and to organizing around the world at this point? close prince charles referring
to the history of enslament, which was very appropriate. barbados was the world's first slave society. other societies have had slavery, but barbados was the first in human history that was built totally on the basis of slavery. social sysm, ideology. that is our history. the royal family wadeeply involved in the british slave trade of african enslavement, so that is the history. so it is good that he had the moral sense to make that reference. i would have wished he would have gone on to encourage the british government engaged in that reparation of discussion with barbados and the other nations of the caribbean community.
he also needs to pay some attention to the role of the royal family and whether the royal family will not have to come to the table as well. we have begun reparations campaign focusing on the national government, national government and the inches 2 -- institutionally between the president in the past. over the years, expanded it to private institutions, banks, insurance companies, universities. admitted its liability and entered a reparations program in the west indies. and look at that task force that is just decided we're going to be doing a special study [indiscernible]
established in the 16 30's. still in existence today. the current representative of that family, never of the british house of commons -- member of the british house of commons, to the richest of the family. that wealth came from that slave plantation in barbados and the jamaica and -- amy: we clearly have to come back to this issue can we hope to have you on again soon. they're so much to talk about. you mentioned glasgow. we discovered the u.n. climate summit and there your prime minister mottley gave a remarkable address on the climate catastrophe, which we played in full that people can find at democracynow.org. david comissiong is barbados' ambassador to the caribbean community, or caricom, and the association of caribbean states. next up, today is world aids day. stay with us. ♪♪ [music break]
amy: "broad street jam" by the bajan saxophonist arturo tappin. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman with juan gonzalez. we and today show looking at world aids day, marked every year december 1. the head of you and aids has worn the cover 19 pandemic and
result in an increase in infections and debts from hiv and ds. >> now covid has hit us and is pushing usurther o track. we saw in the early -- the first phase of the pandemic 2020. we saw disptions. we saw fewer people comi to gethe tools,ewer pple coming for testing, people opping out of treatment because ey were afraid of lining up for a long time or were restricted of public saty measures. so we saw disruptions, but communities fhting hiv [indiscernible] restoring some of the services. but we do expect i the coming years, we might see more deaths, we might see more infections as
a disruption. amy: we now go to chicago where we're joined by steven thrasher, professor at the medill school of journalism at northwestern university. faculty member of northwestern's institute of sexual and gender minority health and wellbeing. his forthcoming book "the viral , underclass: the human toll when inequality and disease collide." professor, your new piece for scientific american is just out, "why covid deaths have surpassed aids deaths in the u.s." please explain. >> it is really concerning that it has taken 40 years to get to about 700,000 aids deaths in the united states but in less than two years, we are already at about 800,000 covid-19 deaths. is a very different story when you look at globally were we are at about 5 million covid deaths globally, which is much less
than these 35 million to 40 million aids deaths globally. it is concerning to think about why the u.s. is such an outlier and to think about how can we as a society mourn and effectively think about the people we have lost and deal with their own grief when we are dealing with such an incredible scale of grief in such a little time. juan: professor, what are some of the comparisons when it comes to inequality and treatment, whether it was for aids or in terms of covid, for testing, and then of course for whatever drugs are brought forth to treat covid? >> our last guest was speaking from barbados. if you follow the colonial roots of the u.s. and england and in the global north, will find enormous disparities about any kind of health, particurly on
viruses between the global north and south. hiv aids, we noticed first in the u.s. in 1981 and we have pretty big head start. hiv is a relatively slowly moving varies within humans and can take 10 to 15 years before someone cusses away from it. so we have time. the united states had a lot of time once we got the medication in the mid-1990's to deal with it effectively to make it so aids deaths never needed to happen again. of those drugs took another 7, 8 your stephen enter into countries like south africa. those death rates continue to spiral and spiral for many years beyond that. no reason why today anyone should be dying of aids. it is a slow moving virus. by the time we know so it is infected, we can give them the support they need. we have the science and medicine for it, it is merely a matter protecting capitalism and the prophets of pharmaceutical companies. we are seeing similar dynamics th covid9.
ch faster moving car so it need to move more quickly because you don't have the window of opportunity to get to people but we have the vaccines and medications that are effective and again are being held from the global south to protect their profits of pharmaceutical corporations. one thi i think is significant and gives some measure of hope is if you look at how marginalized communities dealt with hiv and aids, they have given us the blueprint for how to deal with covid-19. south africa, which has been hard by aids and covid-19, has developed an extremely sophisticated genomic surveillance network for looking for pandemics. that is why mutations of nurses, that is what we know to look at this new variant. similarly where you are in new york, amy, new york city health and hospital system had a very robust testing system. some points that were doing more tests than england. that is one reason why testing was effective.
they have had friendly good vaccination rollout program. you are at about 90% of adults vaccinated in your and no covid deaths in the past couple of days. the blueprints for the places that were hard-hit by hiv and aids have given us would the tools and blueprints of what we need going forward with covid. juan: in terms of the lessons of the aids pandemic stretching out over decades, your thoughts on the possibility that we may be facing not 1, 2, or three years of a covered pandemic but actually decades, especially in terms of the fact of the ability of the virus to mutate and new forms staying ahead of the ability of the medical community to come up with vaccines? >> well, we don't have to have anything like the scale of death we had with aids for covid-19.
it does move faster and countries of the global north are dragging their feet and outputting muscle into getting these vaccines and technology and resources to make them in the global south, but if that were to happen, if those of us who are relatively well protected can pressure our governments and these corporations to do the right thing, this pandemic does not have to drag on for that long. there is no vaccine for hiv. there is an effective medications that make not only treatment of the person living with it well, but make it so they're not likely to transmit the virus onward, but no vaccine for it. but there is for cover 19. we have the tools to end the pandemic in a much quicker period of time. whether or not the systems of capitalism and colonialism and borders are going to laugh that is the political question we are facing now. amy: the summary of your piece is the headline in the subtitle, quote on worlds a day, why
. continue on the second point. >> i think countries around the world societies around the world have dealt largely with covid-19 better than the u.s. united states has had every advantage of time and money and resources. we were rolling out the vaccines first, but we have dropped to 50 of the countries in terms of our vaccination rate. other countries have time better measures. other countries are not as mobile as the u.s., americans move around quite a bit. we are still allowed to travel to many places around the world. this pandemic shows the limits of thinking of the united states as a singular entity. in cities like new york, the pandemic is doing relatively well. in the deep south, not doing very well and in places where there are low vaccination rates without mask mandates. that is one of the reasons why
this has continued to spiral. we have seen a very different thing with hiv and aids which initially entered into specific marginalized community. gaiman, transgender people, people have been policy, incarcerated, or dealing with addiction. those goodies dealt with specific ways to protect one another and learn together how to protect one another. there was no real such thing as what is called bug chasing accusing gabe into trying to get the virus. that did not happen from the level of gay i do miss. but the opposite with covid-19. we have politicians and radio hosts and conservatives who are actively encouraging people to ug chase. they're telling them this is a hoax and go out and get it so this has rated very different environment for how hiv and aids played out in the u.s. and a very different environment for how it is playing out in other parts of the world. where if other countries have debt with pandemics like aids
before, their leaders are not going to be as likely to encourage their citizens to not take this pandemic seriously. juan: i'm if you could comment on how china has managed -- the place where the covid virus started, has managed to attempt -- tamp down and almost unlimited the virus? >> china has had a total number of deaths, some are less than days in the u.s. they took seriously the element of time once they saw the pandemic was happening and put all elements of state power together to stamp it out. the united states amply is not done that. we have not taken advantage of the time and resources we have. we're going into getting booster shots for vaccines and we haven't really done everything we could do with the first round of vaccines to keep this pandemic from playing out in ways that it doesn't have to.
amy: steven thrasher, thank you for being with us, as her at the medill school of journalism at northwestern university. we will link to your new piece just out in scientific american headlined "why covid deaths have surpassed aids deaths in the u.s." that does it for our show. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning.