DHS Announces New Security Precaution: Underwear Inspection

Boxer Shorts

Charley James: According to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano, news reports that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab – the man accused to trying to blow up NW253 – concealed explosives in his underpants are accurate “so we want to be sure that, along with making people walk barefoot through check points, and banning shampoo and deodorant, no one is trying to sneak explosives aboard in their knickers.”

New York’s Juvenile Prisons Are a Crime

Juvenile-hall

If you can judge a society by the way it treats its children, then New York fails in a big way. In fact, the Empire State should be found guilty of child abuse and neglect. The New York Times recently reported on the deplorable state of New York’s juvenile justice system. Gov. David Paterson appointed [...]

LA Youth March for Respect — and Justice

March_1

How far would you go for respect? How about a 50-mile march starting Sunday morning, December 13, at Juvenile Hall in Sylmar and ending Wednesday night with a candlelight vigil outside the lockup in Norwalk?

Overcrowded Prisons in California

Prisoner

Damaged for life and very hard pressed are the people who have paid their debt to society. They unfortunately get the verdict that keeps on punishing. They are also very unlikely to get married, often living alone in a life of quiet desperation.

ACORN ‘Not Guilty’

Fox-and-Acorn

The accusations put ACORN in a situation similar to a man who is asked, “when did you stop beating your wife?” Even though the accusations weren’t true, ACORN was put on the defensive, and lacked the resources to respond effectively to the onslaught of negative publicity.

How to Visit Your Loved One for the Holidays

Prison

You know how much a visit means to someone who’s locked up. And you know that one of the major factors that prevents recidivism is for a prisoner to retain family and community ties. So you set the alarm and get up early and out of the house by 5:00 a.m. to drive the three hours up the Central Valley so you can be one of the first non-appointment visitors milling around waiting to be called.

John Cornyn, Are the 9/11 Suspects Holy Warriors

trials

Thus, the main benefit of Obama’s move is partially restoring a constitutional justice system after years of Bush administration abuse. Yet at least five other Guantanamo prisoners, and likely many more, will be denied a civilian trial.

Dian Fossey Suspected Murderer Acquitted

Image: Genocide Memorial

Perhaps it is the ghost of Dian Fossey that will generate interest in a rigorous search for the truth. Perhaps outrage at the death of one will put the deaths of 3000 at the Twin Towers, 800,000 in Rwanda and six million in Congo into perspective.

Will We Ever Stop the Killings?

Gun-violence

New York Times columnist Bob Herbert last April 24th estimated 12,000 Americans are shot dead each year, 2,000 of them children, and 70,000 more are wounded but survive. Read my personal story.

800,000 Americans Busted Annually for Pot

Smokes

The drug war has also unleashed a torrent of racism in the form of unjust sentencing, which confines crack-cocaine users who are mostly black to prison for longer terms than powder snorters, who are mostly white.

Two GOP-Appointed Judges Shame America

tools-of-torture

Surely, hundreds of foreign prisoners tortured in an illegal war made by the U.S., or their survivors, are supplicants entitled to a fair hearing, not non-persons to be brushed aside as judges Silberman and Kavanaugh have done this past week.

Troy Anthony Davis Update

Troy Anthony Davis continues to fight for justice. He has been on death row since 1991. During his time there, Davis has received three stays of execution.  In August 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court granted Troy Davis the chance to present crucial evidence in court that may prove his innocence. This video which was produced [...]

Panetta Seeks to Whitewash CIA Crimes

CIA Director Leon Panetta

As the U.S. has 15 other intelligence agencies, it has no need of one that feeds it false information. Congress could shut the Agency down by turning off its funding and the sun will come up tomorrow just the same.

Ode to John Holoman

John H. Holoman

Thank you John for the difference you made in our world, in my world, and for being a man’s man. A living example that we can be all that we desire to be. We will miss you dearly.

Snapshots from Abu Ghraib

george bush flies

We have seen the reaction to the September 11th attacks, not just in our own souls but also on the part of our “leaders”. “Be afraid, be very afraid”.

CIA Crucified Captive in Abu Ghraib Prison

abu graib

The Central Intelligence Agency crucified a prisoner in Abu Ghraib prison near Baghdad, according to a report published in The New Yorker magazine. “A forensic examiner found that he (the prisoner) had essentially been crucified; he died from asphyxiation after having been hung by his arms, in a hood, and suffering broken ribs,” the magazine’s [...]

Empathy, the Truth Behind the Hypocrisy

Ron Kovic

The Republicans are searching through Judge Sotomayor’s old speeches and party conversations to find trash to dump on her in their talk radio slime sessions. For honest people, it is more important to look at and consider what she actually said in legal decisions she wrote while she’s been a judge, deciding cases. When it [...]

Health and Human Rights in South Los Angeles

homeless

While the LA Times was writing about gang violence in South LA, more than 700 people gathered on June 5th for the first South Los Angeles Health and Human Rights Conference to consider the institutional violence visited on the people who live there. At the California Science Center, health care professionals, community organizers and advocates [...]

Is Obama Serious About Ending Failed War on Drugs?

drug-wars

Efforts by President Obama to put an end to the nation’s failed “War on Drugs” can’t come an hour too soon—if that’s his intent. From his actions, it’s hard to know. Drug offenses account for about half the 200,000 Federal prison inmates behind bars, compared to just 15% of prisoners convicted of violent crimes involving [...]

Prisoners’ Rights: An Oxymoron?

prison

More than 100 people of all races and all ages traveled to Watts from several California counties on Saturday May 30, sharing a single desire: Bring our loved ones homes. They weren’t talking about family members serving in Afghanistan or Iraq. These are the families torn apart when someone is sent to prison with an [...]

Sonia Sotomayor – A “Safe” or Visionary Pick

sotomayor_warren

President Barack Obama has made his imprint on the history of the federal judiciary with the nomination of the first Latina to the United States Supreme Court. Federal Appeals Court Justice, Sonia Sotomayor, was at the top of the President’s “short list” from the time Associate Justice David Souter announced his retirement. There had been [...]

Obama Betrays Liberals

Lt. General Stanley McChrystal

America’s liberals stand betrayed. Their new president, the one they sweated to elect — a brilliant, charismatic leader with a professional background in constitutional law — has transmogrified himself from the champion who denounced in his campaign the illegalities of the Bush White House into a president bent on their perpetuation. Liberals are stunned by [...]

Wingnuts Take Aim at Supremes’ Nominee Sotomayor

Justice Sonia Sotomayor

The right wing was gearing up for this fight even before Justice David Souter thought about retiring. This week, as President Obama was naming – as expected – Appeals Court Judge Sonia Sotomayor to fill Souter’s chair on the Supreme Court, conservatives were lining up to throw brickbats before the words were out of his [...]

“Of Course (The CIA) Misled Congress. We Were Trained How.”

gitmo_cheney

The voice of the former CIA briefer on the phone is strong and direct, unapologetic in either tone or words. “Of course we misled Congress on torture. The White House and (George) Tenet demanded it, and we were trained how to do it without lying,” he says to me. “People (former Vice President Dick) Cheney [...]

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