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Charles Shaw

Founder Update: Charles Shaw on Police Brutality

Newtopia founder Charles Shaw has been hard at work on various projects through his company Nomad Films. One of his key efforts lies in exposing the truth about police brutality in America.

According to Shaw:

  • 500 innocent Americans are murdered by police every year (U.S. Department of Justice). 5,000 since 9/11, equal to the number of US soldiers lost in Iraq.
  • In 1994 the US Government passed a law authorizing the Pentagon to donate surplus Cold War era military equipment to local police departments.
  • In the 20 years since, weaponry designed for use on a foreign battlefield, has been handed over for use on American streets…against American citizens.
  • The “War on Drugs” and the “War on Terror” replaced the Cold War with billions in funding and dozens of laws geared towards this new “war” against its own citizens.
  • This militarization of the police force has created what is being called an “epidemic of police brutality” sweeping the nation.

Shaw wrote about his own experience with police brutality in his book “Exile Nation: Drugs, Prisons, Politics and Spirituality,” particularly through this excerpt “The Chicago Police & The Assassination of May Molina.”

Most recently, he produced this short film on the subject:

For more information on this and other projects, visit Exile Nation.

charles-bio-picCharles Shaw is an award-winning journalist, editor, author of the critically-acclaimed memoir, Exile Nation: Drugs, Prisons, Politics & Spirituality (2012, Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press), and Director of the documentary films, The Exile Nation Project: An Oral History of the War on Drugs & The American Criminal Justice System (2011), The Plastic People (2013) and Visurreality (2013).

Charles serves as Editor for the openDemocracy Drug & Criminal Justice Policy Forum and the Dictionary of Ethical Politics, both collaborative projects of Resurgence, openDemocracy, and the Tedworth Charitable Trust.

Charles’ work has appeared in Alternet, Alternative Press Review, Conscious Choice, Common Ground, Grist, Guardian UK, Huffington Post, In These Times, Newtopia, The New York Times, openDemocracy, Planetizen, Punk Planet, Reality Sandwich, San Diego Uptown News, Scoop, Shift, Truthout, The Witness, YES!, and Znet. He was a Contributing Author to the 2008 Shift Report from the Institute for Noetic Sciences, and in Planetizen’s Contemporary Debates in Urban Planning (2007, Island Press). In 2009 he was recognized by the San Diego Press Club for excellence in journalism.




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