Sequester: Holding the American People Hostage

boehner cuts off nose

Walter Brasch: The Congressional Budget Office says the sequester could cut more than 750,000 federal jobs. Republicans like that idea, especially since most federal employees are also members of unions. But, those jobs include public health officials, social service workers, teachers, air traffic controllers, and others in critical jobs.

I Gave Up My Firearm Today

decomnissioning firearm

As I drove away, and I am not making this up, a spray of miniature raindrops began to fall and a double rainbow – a rare sight in Southern California – parted the sky to the north. I felt peace.

The Unrelenting Spirit of Cherise Rogers

cherise rogers

Dan Bluemel: Because Rogers had been tackled, roughed up and pepper-sprayed by several officers on the night of her arrest, she and her attorney believed the DA aggressively sought the resisting arrest and battery charges to make it more difficult for her if she later sued the Sheriff’s department.

Tribunal Concealed Evidence Al-Qaeda Cell Killed Hariri

rafik-hariri

Gareth Porter: In focusing entirely on the alleged links between four Hezbollah activists and the 2005 bombing that killed Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, the indictment issued by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon earlier this month has continued the practice of the U.N investigation before it of refusing to acknowledge the much stronger evidence that an Al-Qaeda cell was responsible for the assassination.

Jury Nullification: Remedy or Danger?

jury

Wendy McElroy: Jury nullification did not technically occur in Missoula because no jury was seated. Nevertheless, the incident is viewed as a triumph for nullification, and the strategy is reinvigorated.

Will Tedi Snyder Die in Prison?

Diane Lefer: Though the Supreme Court ruled on May 17 in Graham v. Florida that juveniles must not be sentenced to life without parole for any crime short of homicide, California continues to impose sentences so extreme they are the effective equivalent of life without the possibility of parole.

Buried Alive

tedi snyder

Diane Lefer: Though the Supreme Court ruled on May 17, that juveniles must not be sentenced to life without parole for any crime short of homicide, we expected no surprise and no mercy when we arrived in court Friday morning for the sentencing of young Tedi Snyder. But Judge Ohta did not hand down the preordained 80-year-to-life-sentence. Not because such a sentence is, in effect, equivalent to life without parole, but rather because he, the judge, was recovering from surgery.

Mandatory Minimums: Cruel and Usual

Juvenile Justice

Diane Lefer: The right to a speedy trial turns out to mean nothing when you’re a juvenile, even a juvenile being tried as an adult. After almost three years in lockup, with no trial scheduled, her son agreed to plead guilty to get it over with. “Even the judge couldn’t believe it. He said, ‘They gave you a strike and a felony for that?’”

Judge Donna Quigley Groman Supports Loo, Jones, Crabb, Grossman, and Mack for LA Superior Court

I strongly support the following sitting judicial officers in the following judicial races: #82 Referee Cynthia Loo #84 Commissioner Lori-Ann Jones #154 Commissioner Rocky Crabb #72 Deputy DA Hilleri Grossman Merritt #94 Deputy Public Defender C. Edward Mack (shown here Lori Ann Jones and Cynthia Loo)

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