The following are a list of linked resources for teaching and class discussion in the courses I teach in the School of Criminology and Justice Studies, University of Massachusetts Lowell. Most of the students are studying criminal justice (undergraduate and graduate degrees), security studies and homeland security. I’ll add to this list when I can. Suggestions can be sent to me via the email address listed on my faculty web page.
“White Terrorists Give Political Cover to Other Americans’ Prejudices,” Atlantic Monthly (April 1, 2019)
“Terrorism’s Double Standard: Violent Far-Right Extremists are Rarely Prosecuted as Terrorists,” The Intercept (March 23, 2019)
Report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders (The Kerner Commission Report of 1968), particularly the Recommendations on Policing and the Community. See also Race & Inequality in America: The Kerner Commission at 50
Institutionalized Racism: A Syllabus – How can we help students understand George Floyd’s death in the context of institutionalized racism? A JSTOR Initiative
“Mail Bombs, Hate Crimes and the Meaning of Terrorism,” Council on Foreign Relations (October 30, 2018)
The Intelligence Report – Biannual publication tracking right-wing extremism and hate groups in the U.S.
“Inside the Government, Addressing Domestic Terrorism Has Been Fraught,“ New York Times (August 11, 2019)
Frontline PBS Video: Documenting Hate, Charlottesville (August 7, 2019)
“Tribalism and Globalism in the Era of Trump,” Globe Post (July 18, 2019)
“The Domestic U.S. Terror Threat: What to Know” Council on Foreign Relations (August 6, 2019)
“Countering Domestic Terrorism: Examining the Evolving Threat,” Congressional Testimony of William Braniff (September 25, 2019)
Building Communities of Trust – a collaborative initiative with International Association of Chiefs of Police, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services; the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance; and others
The 1619 Project (NY Times Magazine)
Subsection for discussion on “The Intersections of Racism and Policing.” The following incidents (click on the links) involve police officers using force against unarmed non-white U.S. citizens:
- March 3, 1991: A video camera captured four Los Angeles Police Department officers beating Rodney King in one of the first viral police brutality videos. Roughly a year later, on April 21, 1992 a jury acquitted the officers, and riots erupted in various locations.
- Feb. 23, 1999: Four NYPD officers shot and killed 23-year-old Amadou Diallo. The officers were acquitted on all charges.
- Nov. 26, 2006: Seven undercover NYPD officers fired more than 50 rounds of ammunition at unarmed Sean Bell at a bachelor party. The officers were acquitted on all charges.
- February 26, 2012: 17-year-old Trayvon Martin is chased and shot by George Zimmerman after 911 operators tell Zimmerman to leave the teenager alone. Six weeks after the shooting, Zimmerman was arrested and subsequently acquitted of murder.
- March 21, 2012: Chicago police officer Dante Servin shot unarmed Rekia Boyd, and was later acquitted of all charges.
- July 17, 2014: NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo killed Eric Garner with a deadly chokehold. Pantaleo was fired, but was never convicted of a crime, and in 2019 Attorney General Barr recommended the case be dropped.
- Aug. 9, 2014: Ferguson, Missouri officer Darren Wilson shot and killed 18-year-old Mike Brown Jr. Wilson was not charged with a crime, and several protests were linked to this incident. Also, read the Dept. of Justice criminal investigation report of this shooting, March 4, 2015
- Nov. 22, 2014: Cleveland Police Officer Timothy Loehman killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice. Loehmann was fired but not charged with a crime, and then hired by another Ohio police department .
- April 4, 2015: A bystander captured North Charleston, South Carolina police officer Michael Slager shooting unarmed Walter Scott as Scott runs away during a traffic stop. Slager was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
- April 12, 2015: Baltimore resident Freddie Gray was arrested for carrying a knife and died while being transported to jail. No one involved was convicted of a crime, despite the medical examiner ruling his death a homicide as a result of injuries sustained while in police custody.
- July 19, 2015: University of Cincinnati officer Ray Tensing shot and killed Sam DuBose during a traffic stop. Tensing was not convicted of a crime. He later received a $300k settlement of back pay and legal fees from the university.
- July 13, 2015: Sandra Bland was found hanged in a jail cell after a dashcam captured her brutal arrest by State Trooper Brian Encina, who was never convicted of a crime. Four years later, the victim’s own video of the incident was released.
- July 2, 2016: St. Anthony, Minnesota police officer Jeronimo Yanez shot and killed Philando Castile during a traffic stop in which Castile was not driving or committing a crime. Yanez was acquitted on all charges.
- July 5, 2016: Baton Rouge, Louisiana. officers shot 37-year-old Alton Sterling as he lay on the ground, restrained by officers. No one was charged with a crime.
- Sept. 16, 2016: Tulsa, Oklahoma police officer Betty Shelby shot unarmed Terrance Crutcher as a news helicopter recorded the footage. She was acquitted of first-degree manslaughter. Several videos of the incident are available online.
- March 18, 2018: Sacramento, California police officers opened fire on 23-year-old Stephon Clark, striking him eight times, six of which were in his back. Officers said they began shooting because they thought he was holding a gun. He was later found to be holding an iPhone. No one was ever charged with Clark’s death.
- Sept. 6, 2018: Officer Amber Guyger entered the home of Botham Jean (mistaking it for her own home) and shot him dead. She was convicted of murder and sentenced to 10 years in prison.
- Oct. 12, 2019: Fort Worth, Texas police officer Aaron Dean shot through the window of 28-year-old Atiatana Jefferson, killing her. Dean was fired and charged with murder.
- February 23, 2020: Armed men in Brunswick, Georgia shot and killed Ahmaud Arbery, a 23-year-old African-American jogging through their neighborhood. Two months later, after video of the incident circulated on the Internet, three men were arrested for his murder.
- March 13, 2020: Louisville, Kentucky police officers Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison and Myles Cosgrove entered the apartment of 26-year-old Breonna Taylor to serve a “no-knock warrant” on her boyfriend and shot Taylor dead. No one has been charged with a crime.
- May 25, 2020: Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on the neck of George Floyd for 8 minutes and 46 seconds (2 minutes and 53 seconds of which occurred after Floyd was unconscious). His death was ruled a homicide, and as protests erupted around the U.S., Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder. Three other officers involved (Tou Thao, Thomas K. Lane and J. Alexander Kueng) were also charged with aiding and abetting murder.
Subsection for discussion on “The Intersections of Terrorism, Social Media and White Supremacy/Racial Extremism.” The following resources (click on the links) involve terrorism motivated by racially-oriented right-wing extremist ideologies:
- Seth Jones, The Rise of Far-Right Extremism in the United States. (Nov. 7, 2018)
- Stormfront (backgrounder)
- Amy Gunia, “Facebook Tightens Live-Stream Rules in Response to the Christchurch Massacre,” Time (May 15, 2019), and “How the Christchurch shooter used memes to spread hate.”
- FBI Intelligence Bulletin: “Conspiracy Theories Very Likely Motivate Some Domestic Extremists,” Phoenix Field Office (May 30, 2019)
- David Byrne, The Echo Chamber (2016)
- Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism
- Kate Conger and Jack Nicas, “Twitter Bars Alex Jones and Infowars, Citing Harassing Messages,” The New York Times (Sept. 6, 2018).
- Kevin Roose and Kate Conger, “YouTube to Remove Thousands of videos Pushing Extreme Views,” The New York Times (June 5, 2019).
- “Chan Culture and Violent Extremism.”
- “Far-Right Outfit Uses A.I. to Power its Propaganda“