Woop Woop, That’s the Sound of… These Links About Policing

and related issues. They're not all completely depressing!"Fallout Grows Over Calif. Chief's Participation in Protest": But let's start off with a raincloud for your silver lining. RICHMOND, Calif. — One week after photos of him holding a sign with the hashtag "BlackLivesMatter" at a peaceful local protest went viral on social media, Richmond Police Chief Chris Magnus is still grappling with the fallout — including accusations from his department's police union that he broke the law — but sa … [Read more...]

“Obama’s Big Idea: Let’s Hike Federal Cop Subsidies”

Walter Olson at Cato: President Obama’s newly announced police-reform package lives up to one’s worst expectations. He flatly refuses to curtail the federal police militarization program, instead calling for a big hike in federal spending on aid to local departments with the usual micromanaging strings attached. These strings will predictably make departments more responsive to Washington, and lobbies with clout there, as distinct from their local communities. As USA Today notes, one powerful in … [Read more...]

“Washington Bails on Demilitarization After Ferguson”

Seasons Greetings: Lawmakers vowed changes to the Pentagon programs that deliver military-grade equipment to local police after images of cops climbing out of armored vehicles with military-grade weapons filtered out of Ferguson, Missouri, in August.But months later, the chaotic 1033 program — which sends surplus military gear built for combat to local police forces with little oversight — hasn’t changed at all.The 113th Congress will end without substantive changes to the program. The W … [Read more...]

“Duped By Medill Innocence Project, Milwaukee Man Now Free”: Journal-Sentinel

reports: The first time I wrote about Alstory Simon, then a Milwaukee north sider, was in 1999, right after he confessed to a double murder in Chicago.Simon's shocking admission — not to police but to an investigator working for Northwestern University's Medill Innocence Project — led to the release and pardon of a man on death row for the crime, and ultimately to the death penalty being abolished in Illinois.Two years later, I wrote about Simon again. This time he had reached out to me … [Read more...]

Not Only Avoiding Unjust Discrimination, But Supporting Gay People’s Vocations: A “Gay and Catholic” Demi-Polemical Book Extra

Over the past couple weeks I've had a lot of opportunities to hang out with lgbt Christians who accept and strive to follow the historical Christian sexual ethic. It's been a great chance to see the diversity of our community. But we also have a lot in common; and one depressing thing many of us turned out to have in common was experience of discrimination due to our sexual orientation. I admit I was surprised to learn just how many celibate lgbt Christians had been fired, denied jobs, … [Read more...]

No-Fly Zone Around Ferguson Was Totally Just to Keep Out the Press

I'm sure you're shocked: The U.S. government agreed to a police request to restrict more than 37 square miles of airspace surrounding Ferguson, Missouri, for 12 days in August for safety, but audio recordings show that local authorities privately acknowledged the purpose was to keep away news helicopters during violent street protests. more … [Read more...]

“The Gift Shop of the Dead”: I Visit the Museum of Crime and Punishment

for AmSpec: For the past twelve years I’ve volunteered at a crisis pregnancy center serving mainly low-income women in the District of Columbia, and I’ve noticed something about how our clients talk: Nobody ever says “prison.” Boyfriends, husbands, fathers, sons were never “locked up,” “in jail,” or “serving time”; they were always “incarcerated.” There is an unexpected poignancy to the bureaucratic term—a lacy Latinate word suffused with so much pain, as if standardization and abstraction coul … [Read more...]


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