Alex Richter, 21 year old traveller.
I've accomplished a bit in my short time, and just want to share the experience with others :)
Background Illustrations provided by: http://edison.rutgers.edu/
descentintotyranny:

A SWAT team blew a hole in my 2-year-old son — Alecia Phonesavanh
June 24 2014
After our house burned down in Wisconsin a few months ago, my husband and I packed our four young kids and all our belongings into a gold minivan and drove to my sister-in-law’s place, just outside of Atlanta. On the back windshield, we pasted six stick figures: a dad, a mom, three young girls, and one baby boy.
That minivan was sitting in the front driveway of my sister-in-law’s place the night a SWAT team broke in, looking for a small amount of drugs they thought my husband’s nephew had. Some of my kids’ toys were in the front yard, but the officers claimed they had no way of knowing children might be present. Our whole family was sleeping in the same room, one bed for us, one for the girls, and a crib.
After the SWAT team broke down the door, they threw a flashbang grenade inside. It landed in my son’s crib.
Flashbang grenades were created for soldiers to use during battle. When they explode, the noise is so loud and the flash is so bright that anyone close by is temporarily blinded and deafened. It’s been three weeks since the flashbang exploded next to my sleeping baby, and he’s still covered in burns.
There’s still a hole in his chest that exposes his ribs. At least that’s what I’ve been told; I’m afraid to look.
My husband’s nephew, the one they were looking for, wasn’t there. He doesn’t even live in that house. After breaking down the door, throwing my husband to the ground, and screaming at my children, the officers – armed with M16s – filed through the house like they were playing war. They searched for drugs and never found any.
I heard my baby wailing and asked one of the officers to let me hold him. He screamed at me to sit down and shut up and blocked my view, so I couldn’t see my son. I could see a singed crib. And I could see a pool of blood. The officers yelled at me to calm down and told me my son was fine, that he’d just lost a tooth. It was only hours later when they finally let us drive to the hospital that we found out Bou Bou was in the intensive burn unit and that he’d been placed into a medically induced coma.
For the last three weeks, my husband and I have been sleeping at the hospital. We tell our son that we love him and we’ll never leave him behind. His car seat is still in the minivan, right where it’s always been, and we whisper to him that soon we’ll be taking him home with us.

Every morning, I have to face the reality that my son is fighting for his life. It’s not clear whether he’ll live or die. All of this to find a small amount of drugs?
The only silver lining I can possibly see is that my baby Bou Bou’s story might make us angry enough that we stop accepting brutal SWAT raids as a normal way to fight the “war on drugs.” I know that this has happened to other families, here in Georgia and across the country. I know that SWAT teams are breaking into homes in the middle of the night, more often than not just to serve search warrants in drug cases. I know that too many local cops have stockpiled weapons that were made for soldiers to take to war. And as is usually the case with aggressive policing, I know that people of color and poor people are more likely to be targeted.  I know these things because of the American Civil Liberties Union’s new report, and because I’m working with them to push for restraints on the use of SWAT.
A few nights ago, my 8-year-old woke up in the middle of the night screaming, “No, don’t kill him! You’re hurting my brother! Don’t kill him.” How can I ever make that go away? I used to tell my kids that if they were ever in trouble, they should go to the police for help. Now my kids don’t want to go to sleep at night because they’re afraid the cops will kill them or their family. It’s time to remind the cops that they should be serving and protecting our neighborhoods, not waging war on the people in them.
I pray every minute that I’ll get to hear my son’s laugh again, that I’ll get to watch him eat French fries or hear him sing his favorite song from “Frozen.” I’d give anything to watch him chase after his sisters again. I want justice for my baby, and that means making sure no other family ever has to feel this horrible pain.

 Alecia Phonesavanh is the mother of Bounkham Phonesavanh, nicknamed “Baby Bou Bou.” She and her family live in Atlanta. For more information about Bou Bou, go to www.justiceforbabyboubou.com.

descentintotyranny:

A SWAT team blew a hole in my 2-year-old son — Alecia Phonesavanh

June 24 2014

After our house burned down in Wisconsin a few months ago, my husband and I packed our four young kids and all our belongings into a gold minivan and drove to my sister-in-law’s place, just outside of Atlanta. On the back windshield, we pasted six stick figures: a dad, a mom, three young girls, and one baby boy.

That minivan was sitting in the front driveway of my sister-in-law’s place the night a SWAT team broke in, looking for a small amount of drugs they thought my husband’s nephew had. Some of my kids’ toys were in the front yard, but the officers claimed they had no way of knowing children might be present. Our whole family was sleeping in the same room, one bed for us, one for the girls, and a crib.

After the SWAT team broke down the door, they threw a flashbang grenade inside. It landed in my son’s crib.

Flashbang grenades were created for soldiers to use during battle. When they explode, the noise is so loud and the flash is so bright that anyone close by is temporarily blinded and deafened. It’s been three weeks since the flashbang exploded next to my sleeping baby, and he’s still covered in burns.

There’s still a hole in his chest that exposes his ribs. At least that’s what I’ve been told; I’m afraid to look.

My husband’s nephew, the one they were looking for, wasn’t there. He doesn’t even live in that house. After breaking down the door, throwing my husband to the ground, and screaming at my children, the officers – armed with M16s – filed through the house like they were playing war. They searched for drugs and never found any.

I heard my baby wailing and asked one of the officers to let me hold him. He screamed at me to sit down and shut up and blocked my view, so I couldn’t see my son. I could see a singed crib. And I could see a pool of blood. The officers yelled at me to calm down and told me my son was fine, that he’d just lost a tooth. It was only hours later when they finally let us drive to the hospital that we found out Bou Bou was in the intensive burn unit and that he’d been placed into a medically induced coma.

For the last three weeks, my husband and I have been sleeping at the hospital. We tell our son that we love him and we’ll never leave him behind. His car seat is still in the minivan, right where it’s always been, and we whisper to him that soon we’ll be taking him home with us.

Every morning, I have to face the reality that my son is fighting for his life. It’s not clear whether he’ll live or die. All of this to find a small amount of drugs?

The only silver lining I can possibly see is that my baby Bou Bou’s story might make us angry enough that we stop accepting brutal SWAT raids as a normal way to fight the “war on drugs.” I know that this has happened to other families, here in Georgia and across the country. I know that SWAT teams are breaking into homes in the middle of the night, more often than not just to serve search warrants in drug cases. I know that too many local cops have stockpiled weapons that were made for soldiers to take to war. And as is usually the case with aggressive policing, I know that people of color and poor people are more likely to be targeted.  I know these things because of the American Civil Liberties Union’s new report, and because I’m working with them to push for restraints on the use of SWAT.

A few nights ago, my 8-year-old woke up in the middle of the night screaming, “No, don’t kill him! You’re hurting my brother! Don’t kill him.” How can I ever make that go away? I used to tell my kids that if they were ever in trouble, they should go to the police for help. Now my kids don’t want to go to sleep at night because they’re afraid the cops will kill them or their family. It’s time to remind the cops that they should be serving and protecting our neighborhoods, not waging war on the people in them.

I pray every minute that I’ll get to hear my son’s laugh again, that I’ll get to watch him eat French fries or hear him sing his favorite song from “Frozen.” I’d give anything to watch him chase after his sisters again. I want justice for my baby, and that means making sure no other family ever has to feel this horrible pain.

Alecia Phonesavanh is the mother of Bounkham Phonesavanh, nicknamed “Baby Bou Bou.” She and her family live in Atlanta. For more information about Bou Bou, go to www.justiceforbabyboubou.com.

Reblogged from supernaturral  604,045 notes

rick-sanchez:

camiekahle:

THIS IS THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER SEEN

I’VE BEEN TRYING TO FIND THIS FOR SEVEN YEARS

DO YOU UNDERSTAND HOW HARD IT IS TO ?????

1864impala:

encores:

#this is the most disturbingly normal photo of famous people i have ever seen #they look like a bunch of cousins at a book shop #stop ruining the illusion of show business guys #you’re supposed to look famous all of the time

#it’s like the weekly stark day out or something #catelyn has insisted they take this picture because she’s started scrap booking #except theon is in his teen rebellion stage and refuses to look at the camera #robb is being the good eldest son #sansa just likes cameras and arya still has a few years of cute left#then there’s jon snow #just glad to be here
Reblogged from astrolocherry  1,026 notes
astrolocherry:

Sagittarius: “There is nothing wrong with loving the crap out of everything. Negative people find their walls. So never apologize for your enthusiasm. Never. Ever. Never.” Ryan Adams
Cancer: "We have a responsibility to stand watch over one another, we are watchers, all of us, watchers, guarding against the darkness." Dean Kootz
Leo: “I look at you and see all the ways a soul can bruise, and I wish I could sink my hands into your flesh and light lanterns along your spine so you know that there’s nothing but light when I see you.” Shinji Moon
Taurus: “Suddenly I realize, that if I would step out of my body I would break into blossom.”James Wright 
Aries: “My soul is impatient with itself, as with a bothersome child; its restlessness keeps growing and is forever the same. Everything interests me, but nothing holds me.” Fernando Pessoa
Pisces: “I hadn’t known that a light could be a feeling and a sound could be a color and a kiss could be both a question and an answer. And that heaven could be the ocean or a person or this moment or something else entirely.” Megan Miranda 
Aquarius: “Have you ever analyzed things to the degree where you can’t really remember the difference between what’s real and what you’ve created in your head?” Toni Nicolle 
Libra: “Be very, very careful what you put into that head, because you’ll never, ever get it out.”Thomas Cardinal Wolsey
Virgo: “I’ve got a bad case of the 3:00 am guilts -you know, when you lie in bed awake and replay all those things you didn’t do right? Because, as we all know, nothing solves insomnia like a nice warm glass of regret, depression and self-loathing.”D.D Barrant 
Capricorn: “I hid my deepest feelings so well I forgot where I placed them.” Amy Tan
Scorpio: “Do I fear the sleepless nights? 
You have no idea how long the dark lasts when you cannot close your eyes to it” Matilda Flood 
Gemini: "I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night? Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I’m not the same, the next question is ‘Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!" Lewis Carroll 

 -Cherry 

 

astrolocherry:

Sagittarius: There is nothing wrong with loving the crap out of everything. Negative people find their walls. So never apologize for your enthusiasm. Never. Ever. Never. Ryan Adams

Cancer: "We have a responsibility to stand watch over one another, we are watchers, all of us, watchers, guarding against the darkness." Dean Kootz

Leo: I look at you and see all the ways a soul can bruise, and I wish I could sink my hands into your flesh and light lanterns along your spine so you know that there’s nothing but light when I see you.Shinji Moon

Taurus: Suddenly I realize, that if I would step out of my body I would break into blossom.James Wright

Aries: My soul is impatient with itself, as with a bothersome child; its restlessness keeps growing and is forever the same. Everything interests me, but nothing holds me. Fernando Pessoa

Pisces: I hadn’t known that a light could be a feeling and a sound could be a color and a kiss could be both a question and an answer. And that heaven could be the ocean or a person or this moment or something else entirely.Megan Miranda

Aquarius: Have you ever analyzed things to the degree where you can’t really remember the difference between what’s real and what you’ve created in your head? Toni Nicolle

Libra: Be very, very careful what you put into that head, because you’ll never, ever get it out.Thomas Cardinal Wolsey

Virgo: I’ve got a bad case of the 3:00 am guilts -you know, when you lie in bed awake and replay all those things you didn’t do right? Because, as we all know, nothing solves insomnia like a nice warm glass of regret, depression and self-loathing.D.D Barrant

Capricorn: I hid my deepest feelings so well I forgot where I placed them. Amy Tan

Scorpio: Do I fear the sleepless nights?

You have no idea how long the dark lasts when you cannot close your eyes to itMatilda Flood

Gemini: "I wonder if I’ve been changed in the night? Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I’m not the same, the next question is ‘Who in the world am I?’ Ah, that’s the great puzzle!" Lewis Carroll

 -Cherry

 

Reblogged from dejavu394  103,949 notes

jaclcfrost:

what you said was very sweet and means a lot to me but i am incapable of properly responding in any way besides “thank you so much aaaah” because i do not know how to accurately express the exact level of my gratitude to where you completely understand how much what you said meant to me without me getting even more emotional and looking like a fucking nerd: an autobiography