Monday News: Monuments to oppression


KKK HOODS DRAPED OVER CONFEDERATE STATUES ON CAPITOL GROUNDS, TWO ARRESTED: Raleigh police arrested two people during a Sunday afternoon protest against Confederate monuments at the State Capitol. Organizers said in a statement that it was a peaceful gathering to provide context about the statues' history. The group "Smash Racism Raleigh" live streamed the demonstration on Twitter. According to police, Enzo Niebuhr and Jody Anderson climbed onto the statues and covered the heads with KKK hoods. They were charged with defacing a public monument and disorderly conduct for allegedly repeating anti-racist chants. Smash Racism Raleigh says they were wrongfully arrested.

POLL SHOWS MAJORITY OF CITIZENS SUPPORT MAY 1 TEACHER RALLY: The new poll from Public Policy Polling found that 71 percent of the 514 people surveyed said they support N.C. teachers’ plan to leave school for the May 1 protest to demand that state lawmakers increase state school funding, The poll results, released Thursday, also showed strong support for the march’s goals, which include raising pay for school employees and expanding Medicaid funding. The poll results come as a growing number of school districts cancel classes on May 1 because so many school employees have requested the day off. “Republicans and Democrats stood up for our kids last year,” said Mark Jewell, president of the N.C. Association of Educators, which is organizing the protest. “They’re rising up again as we get more school districts say we’re going to close down and let my community and educators go to Raleigh to lobby on behalf of our students.”

MT. AIRY ROAD RAGE ENCOUNTER LEAVES TWO CHILDREN WITH BULLET WOUNDS: Authorities say a North Carolina man has been arrested after two children were shot in a road rage incident. Surry County officials say 41-year-old Byron Donnell Green of Mount Airy is charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, discharging a weapon into an occupied property causing bodily injury and assault by pointing a gun. Bond for Green was set at $600,000. Investigators say a 9-year-old boy and a 7-year-old girl were shot Saturday afternoon after Green became involved in a road rage incident with their father in the Flat Rock community of Mount Airy. The children were driven to the hospital by their father. The boy was treated and released, and the girl was reported in stable condition after undergoing surgery.

GIULIANI SAYS IT WASN'T WRONG FOR TRUMP TO SEEK INFORMATION FROM RUSSIA: President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani insisted Sunday the president’s 2016 campaign did nothing wrong by taking information from the Russians, as House Democrats pledged stepped-up investigations into campaign misconduct and possible crimes of obstruction detailed in the special counsel’s report. Giuliani called the Trump campaign’s effort to get political help from representatives of the Russian government possibly ill-advised but not illegal. “There’s nothing wrong with taking information from Russians,” Giuliani said, referring to a June 2016 Trump Tower meeting involving Trump’s son Donald Jr., son-in-law Jared Kushner and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in which they sought from a lawyer linked to Russia harmful information on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Giuliani was rebutting Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, who said in a statement on Twitter Friday he was sickened by the findings from Mueller’s 400-plus page report in the Russia investigation. Romney cited details on how the Trump campaign welcomed political dirt from Russia.

OFFICIALS HAD EARLY WARNING OF SRI LANKAN TERRORIST ATTACKS, BUT DIDN'T SHARE INFORMATION: Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Sunday that neither he nor his cabinet ministers had been informed of the warning, highlighting the power struggle between him and President Maithripala Sirisena, who is also the defense minister. Late last year, the feud led, for a time, to there being two officials claiming to be the rightful prime minister. The apparent intelligence failure and the breakdown of communication within the government are likely to prompt political recriminations and attract attention in investigations into the attacks. At a news conference on Monday, the health minister, Rajitha Senaratne, said there had been a warning as early as April 4, reiterating that the prime minister and his allies had been “completely blind on the situation.” He noted the lack of cooperation within the government, saying that when the prime minister attempted recently to call a security council meeting, members of the panel refused to attend. An April 11 letter from the police official, citing foreign intelligence services, not only named the group believed to be planning an attack, National Thowheeth Jama’ath, but also named individual members.