David Love: Meanwhile, theocratic GOP members of Congress are proposing the crudely worded “The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act.” Current law allows for federal funding of abortions only in the case of rape or incest.
Jennifer Graber: While Vick’s effort to turn his life around has won praise from many, it is no surprise that some will remain unconvinced. Since at least the 1820s, Americans have been supremely conflicted about what to do with their lawbreakers. Punish them or redeem them? Or is it a little of both?
Sherwood Ross: Those supporting Manning need to recognize he is an icon for the bizarre, systemic destruction of tens of thousands of other human beings locked away in perpetual silence by their tormentors, often for mere infractions of prison rules, without the review of any judge or jury.
On January 19, 2011 the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it had decided in favor of the government in the matter of NASA, et al., v. Robert M. Nelson et al. In a unanimous decision, the court found that the questions the 28 JPL employees challenged were appropriate for the protection of JPL as a federal facility.
Joyce Appleby: Senators are pondering partial reform of the filibuster, which is now routinely used to block Senate action. Historian Joyce Appleby suggests that if they want to bring the Senate in line with the founders’ original intent they might follow the lead of the Tea Party and go back to the beginning. In its early decades the U.S. Senate operated on the simple majority principle: no supermajorities, no filibusters.
David Love: The recent assassination attempt on Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona, which left 18 wounded and 6 dead, is a reminder that all is not well in that state. With anti-immigrant legislation, a ban on Chicano studies in the public schools and lax gun laws, Arizona is ground zero for hate and intolerance in America.
Walter Moss: President Obama has often been criticized for being too ready to compromise or for not displaying enough political passion for just causes. No doubt, he has not always perfectly calibrated the right mix of passion and compromise. But there is also no doubt, at least in my mind, that he is correct in calling for more civility in politics.
Tina Dupuy: Sarah Palin, stand by your free speech. Minutes after the Arizona shooting, Palin’s “Crosshairs” image was scrubbed from her website without an explanation or comment – a cowardly move. If you are going to say outrageous things, then you are going to have to stand by outrageous things
Jasmyne Cannick: Rather than call Eagles owner Jeffrey Laurie, the President could have really made an impact by addressing employers throughout America on the importance of giving all ex-prisoners—regardless of their football playing ability—a second chance and freeing them from a life without the possibility of employment.
David Holtzman: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger can help. In what very little time he has left in office, he can give his legacy a considerable boost by commuting the state’s hundreds of pending death sentences to life in prison without possibility of release. As a Los Angeles resident on the world’s stage, he should be sensitive to his image at home and abroad.
Dennis Danziger: Despite the frequent portraits drawn in film, television and literature of lawyers as thieves in Armani suits, I know most lawyers are tough, smart, and fight like hell for their clients. This is why I was disheartened when someone close to me needed his lawyer to come out swinging, but instead paid a pile of money to a criminal attorney who took a dive.