Why Iowans Doubled-Down on Obama

farm holiday association

Mark Naison: Some people are astonished that a 92 percent white state, which is heavily agricultural, voted for President Obama in two straight elections.

Occupy LA Arrestees Need Support

On November 30, 2011, 292 peaceful people were arrested during the Los Angeles Police Department’s raid on Occupy Los Angeles’ encampment at City Hall. This week and next, many of these peaceful people will be in court and they need your support.

As Death Penalty Cases Fade, L.A. County Pays to Buck the Trend

Natasha Minsker and Ramona Ripston: Los Angeles County, home to California’s largest trial court system, has been feeling the pain of those court closures in more significant measure than most. It recently laid off more than 300 staff and is moving forward with shutting down 12 courtrooms. But meanwhile, a parallel trend is stalking the county that’s exacerbating the budget crisis. Astoundingly, Los Angeles County has become the leading death penalty county in the United States. In fact, in 2009 more people were sentenced to death in Los Angeles County than in any other state, including Texas, the longtime leader in this grim statistic.

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?'”