Lucas Smolcic Larson

About Lucas Smolcic Larson

Lucas studies Anthropology and Portuguese at Brown University. He writes on Brazil, sustainability, and the intersection of social media and social movements.

A Case Study In The U.S. Security State: Muslim Surveillance By The NYPD

They were called “mosque crawlers,” “rakers,” and “informants.” They infiltrated Muslim student groups, eavesdropped on conversations in public spaces, and tracked individuals in intricate databases. The plainclothes officers behind these covert actions were part of the New York Police Department’s (NYPD) discriminatory Muslim surveillance program, intensified after the September 11th, […]

Brazilian Federal Decree Places Public Security Under Military Jurisdiction In Rio De Janeiro

On Friday, February 16th, the Brazilian federal government issued a public safety decree in the state of Rio de Janeiro—police, firefighters, and intelligence-gathering initiatives—will be placed under military jurisdiction for the rest of 2018. Passed down directly from President Michel Temer with the signature of Rio’s Governor, Luiz Fernando Pezão, […]

‘Not Guilty’ Verdict In Murder Of Indigenous Man Draws National Criticism In Canada

On Friday, February 9, a 12-person jury in Battleford, Saskatchewan found 56-year-old Gerald Stanley ‘not guilty’ of killing 22-year-old Coulten Boushie, an Indigenous person from the Red Pheasant Nation. The decision has ignited outrage from First Nations communities across Canada, who took to social media to condemn the verdict and […]

Militarized Security Build-Up Accompanies South Korean Winter Olympics

The 2018 Winter Olympics, scheduled to begin on February 9th in the mountainous region of Pyeongchang County, South Korea, will feature an unprecedented use of the military for security purposes, according to reports that have surfaced in the past weeks. The New York Times said the force of 60,000 security […]

U.S. Immigration And Customs Enforcement Targets Immigration Rights Leaders For Deportation Under Trump Administration

A string of efforts by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in recent months to deport immigration rights leaders points to a new policy of targeting groups that oppose the agency, according to immigration activists and observers. ICE denies these claims, but critics cite evidence from cities across the country. […]

Report Describes Culture Of Sexual Abuse At The United Nations

The United Nations (UN) is having its #MeToo moment. British newspaper The Guardian released an expansive report on January 18 detailing a toxic mix of sexual harassment and assault coupled with dysfunctional mechanisms of investigating victims’ claims across the organization’s agencies.  15 female employees told reporters they had experienced gender-based violence, […]

Protesters, Human Rights Advocates In Outrage Over Pardon Of Former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori

On Thursday, the 12th of January, tens of thousands marched in the Peruvian capital of Lima for the fourth time since President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski pardoned divisive former President Alberto Fujimori on Christmas Eve. They shouted “traitor” and “the pardon has got to go,” demanding its reversal and Kuczynski’s resignation. […]

Canadian Senator Expelled From Conservative Party Over Endorsement Of Anti-Indigenous ‘Racism’

On 4 January 2018, Canadian Conservative Party Senator Lynn Beyak was expelled from her caucus after refusing to remove letters published on her website expressing anti-Indigenous views. Senator Beyak gained notoriety last year for defending Canada’s residential school system, a state-sponsored program designed to assimilate Native peoples into Canadian society. […]

“Democratic Surveillance” And The Humanitarian Use Of Drones

Since the first U.S. “targeted killing” operation in 2002, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) have made headlines for their role in the war. This makes sense. The development of drone technology has always been promoted by the world’s militaries. The radio-controlled “DH.82B Queen Bee,” developed by the British in the 1930s […]

Concerns Over Election Rigging, Human Rights Abuses Deepen Ongoing Honduran Election Crisis 1

Last week, tens of thousands of Hondurans took to the streets to protest mounting evidence that incumbent President Juan Orlando Hernández manipulated votes to win reelection after the Central American nation went to the polls on November 26th. Honduran human rights organization COFADEH reported on Wednesday, December 6th, that 14 […]

Chilean Presidential Elections Runoff And What Lies Ahead For The Eventual Winner

Chileans will return to the polls to elect their next president in a runoff between conservative former President Sebastián Piñera and center-left candidate Alejandro Guillier. This comes after none of Chiles’s eight presidential candidates achieved the required 50% of the vote to guarantee victory in the first round on November […]