Civil Liberties

An Attempted Coup in Slow Motion

Reading Time: 7 minutesWhy does the Republican Party hate the US Postal Service with such damning intensity? The answer, of course, is that it doesn’t. What Republicans, and more specifically, Donald Trump, really hate is the idea of losing the election in November. The US Postal Service is merely collateral damage in a concerted plan that depends on considerable amounts of voter suppression.

Young Children Risk Being Undercounted in 2020 Census

Reading Time: 3 minutesMillions of people are at risk of becoming invisible as far as the United States government is concerned. The most vulnerable will be children under the age of five.

Why Policing in Schools Is Complicated

Reading Time: 9 minutesAs a junior at East High School, an inner-city school in Rochester, NY, Eric Kounnavong, a first-generation Laotian American, got along well with other students. He had simultaneously enrolled in three art classes to explore his Laotian heritage, and he was taking night classes to graduate early. On the surface, Eric’s future looked promising.

The Possible Housing Opportunity Provided by COVID-19

Reading Time: 9 minutesThis article is part of on economic inequality in the US.In 2014, Dani Brockington moved to Atlanta for a cushy job as a graphic designer.

Treaty Once Created to Stop Child Abductions Could Now Be Protecting Abusers

Reading Time: 8 minutesAn international treaty initially created in 1980 to protect children from being abducted has now become a mechanism for abusers to manipulate the courts and gain access to their children, according to Joan Meier, a domestic violence expert and attorney for a mother who says  she was forced to return her child to her abuser.

Two Visions of America

Reading Time: 4 minutesJames W. Pardew was a career US Army intelligence officer who served as deputy J-2 (intelligence) of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and director of foreign intelligence for the Army. His diplomatic experience includes US special envoy during the breakup of Yugoslavia and US ambassador to Bulgaria.

Social Media Explodes With Ways to Help #BLM Movement

Reading Time: 3 minutesIn the wake of George Floyd’s killing, protests of police brutality against African Americans have erupted in all 50 states, and have even spread globally.

Will Civil Liberties Be Another COVID-19 Victim?

Reading Time: 7 minutesChances are you don’t remember Kaci Hickox, but in 2014 she was a household name. Back then, when the world was gripped by fear of another aggressive virus — in this case the deadly Ebola disease — she was an American nurse who went to Sierra Leone to treat the sick.

MLK: What He Meant to the US and What the US Did to Him

Reading Time: 3 minutesWithout Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the United States would certainly look different than it does today. Yet, in spite of being one of the greatest leaders of the 20th century and helping the US become more just, much of the shameful injustice that his country perpetrated against him remains hidden. 

Red Flag Laws and the Consequences of Good Intentions

Something&;s wrong with your uncle across the street. He&;s always been a strange guy, but he&;s been acting more strangely than usual since he lost his job last month.

How America Fell Out of Love With Machine Guns

Able to fire 25 rounds per second, and with a standard drum magazine of fifty .45-caliber rounds, the Thompson submachine gun, or tommy gun, was the weapon of choice for gangsters of the Prohibition era.

The Sexual Assault Crisis Facing Native American Women

When she was a senior in high school, Kerry Hawk Lessard invited some friends to her home, like many seniors do. They drank all night. Before everyone left, one of the men unlocked the back door and taped the lock open. Later that night he returned and sexually assaulted her. She was 19 years old. Lessard, a member of the Shawnee tribe, grew up in an urban Native community in Baltimore, MD. Her attacker was non-native. She didn’t call the police. She didn’t call the next time she was assaulted either.

What If the US, Like Germany, Bans Hate Speech in the Future?

Which do you agree with: America has too much online hate speech? Or, America has too much online free speech? Both complaints can apply to the same words. The difference depends on no more than whether you are the speaker or the listener. What comes from my mouth is free speech that deserves legal protection. You protest that what enters your ears is hate speech that must be prohibited. Hate speech is a byproduct of free speech.

Will Congress Help Rape Victims Get Justice?

After she was raped in Seattle, Leah Griffin had to wait nearly 17 hours before being examined by a nurse. McKenna Williams waited nearly 12 hours in San Diego. Jessica Garcia had to travel from her home state of Oregon to California. All three women did what seems logical in the aftermath of sexual assault — they went to the nearest emergency room.

League of Women Voters Gets Trump Bump

The League of Women Voters is experiencing a surge of new blood, new resources, and new energy. But it is the League’s “old” values that are attracting new members. Values like nonpartisanship and integrity, civility, and a refusal to be bullied.

More Marijuana Legalization Coming — Could Trump Be On Board?

With less than 100 days to the midterm elections, Democrats are hoping to capture the House of Representatives in a much touted . But there’s another wave that has quietly been making headway — a green one.

What Will Happen If Abortion Legislation Is Turned Back to the States?

Justice Anthony Kennedy’s resignation from the Supreme Court in June has suddenly intensified concerns for pro-choice advocates. With President Donald Trump’s second SCOTUS appointment, and his , many fear a return to pre-Roe v. Wade days.

Internal CIA Docs: ‘Enhanced Interrogation’ Is Torture

Back when the existential competition between the communist USSR and the capitalist USA was reaching its fevered pitch, the CIA on Communist bloc interrogation techniques — which it denounced as “police tactics which would not be condoned in a democratic country.”The 1956 CIA study was commissioned amid Cold War hysteria surrounding reports of the Communists’ seeming ability to

Flunking the Test of Character

The body cam video of the Milwaukee police officer who initially confronted Sterling Brown is difficult to watch. But you should. The but you’ll get the picture right away. It’s the story of a small man who abuses the power he is entrusted with. And the same thing is playing out across the country on a daily basis in different forms.

Weaponizing 911

Later this month, the 8,000 stores it owns within the US for one afternoon to provide “racial bias training” to its nearly 150,000 employees. Let’s see how things work out. If the training is successful, maybe the entire country should shut down for a bit, take a long hard look in the mirror, and do some racial bias education of its own.

Chicago Mayor Pushing for Surveillance Drones

Police and government surveillance of the residents of Chicago is already so infamous nationally that software developers a few years ago created an interactive game, , which invites clever gamers to evade and escape the digital surveillance of state authorities there.

CIA Whistleblower Dishes on Torture as Haspel Faces Intel Committee

On the day President Donald Trump’s nominee to run the CIA, Gina Haspel, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee &; and was questioned about her role in the US torture program &; it bears remembering that nobody associated with the agency was ever held to account for this war crime.

Musings of a Mass Shooting Survivor

A version of this article was previously published December 2017.We had been watching a puppet skit about an angry kid who shoots his entire family at dinner. It was hilarious, and we were still laughing when the dean stepped onto the stage and announced that a gunman was on campus and that at least one person was dead.

Revealing the Ploy That Drew MLK to Memphis

On February 1, 1968, two underpaid sanitation workers died a gruesome death in Memphis when they were swallowed alive by a poorly maintained garbage packer.In his book, , Dr. William Pepper claims the deaths were not an accident.

Fighting Abortion Texas Style

As Texas governor, Rick Perry (R) helped put in place some of the country’s most restrictive abortion laws. Though he is now ensconced in the Trump administration, heading up the Department of Energy, his brand of anti-abortion fervor has infected Republicans in dozens of states, in Congress, and the White House.

Are Judges and Juries Done Believing Everything the FBI Says?

The wife of the Pulse nightclub shooter was acquitted by a Florida jury on Friday. Is this a sign we have reached peak post-9/11 hysteria against Muslims facing terrorism charges? Omar Mateen killed 49 and wounded 58 patrons of Orlando’s Pulse nightclub in the early morning hours of June 12, 2016. He was shot and killed by police following a standoff.

Why the March for Our Lives Might Be a March for the Ages

We all know the story. On Valentine’s Day, an expelled 19-year-old returned to his old school, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL, and, armed with an AR-15 assault rifle, three teachers and 14 students.

What Gun Background Checks Can’t Detect: Stupidity

It’s a good thing I don’t own a gun. I am hopelessly absent-minded. If I did own one, I would probably set it down next to my hair dryer, or beside my TV remote, or on my night table next to  my alarm clock, which I often fumble with while half asleep. (My cat also likes to fumble with objects on that table, knocking them to the floor, one by one.) And if I stuffed that gun into my big pouchy bag, I’d probably never see it again. Unless I carelessly tossed that bag on the floor somewhere, causing the gun to go off.

Why the Accused 9/11 Mastermind Can’t Get a Fair Trial

It’s been nearly 17 years since hijacked airplanes crashed into the World Trade Center and Pentagon, killing nearly 3,000 people. It’s been 15 years since Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, one of the alleged 9/11 planners, was captured in Pakistan. And it’s been 10 years since he was arraigned in a military court in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. Yet Mohammed, whom the government characterizes as the “mastermind” of that horrific attack, has yet to stand trial.

John Perry Barlow’s Last Words

, by John Perry Barlow and Robert Greenfield (Crown Archetype, June 2018).John Perry Barlow’s sudden death last week shined a spotlight on his high-profile life one last time. His last book, scheduled for June publication, was released for review the day he died.

The Nunes Memo: Six Degrees of Separation from Reality

Late last Friday, President Donald Trump the release of a classified Democratic memo supposedly rebutting the claims of Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) that the FBI deceived a secret court while investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Why Marching for Life Now Means Attacking Contraception

Each January, anti-abortion activists take to the streets of the nation’s capital to fight for policies they say will protect unborn life. This year, emboldened by conservatives controlling the White House and Congress, and courts stacked with like-minded judges, they are setting their sights on a new target: The elimination of federal funding for family planning services.For 45 years, the “pro-life” movement has gathered in Washington around the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v.