JMF: From the offenders’ perspective … what’s the advantage of advocating (or mandating) rape or other forms sexualized violence?
LW: Sexualized violence obliterates the enemy in a way that is often more effective than killing. Survivors often go silent and this plus fear of further terrorization can inhibit them and their families from either continuing to fight or resisting. It demeans women and entire communities—it’s like taking away a limb from a body. But it’s worse in that the psychological after-effects are multipronged and destructive in so many ways. The body in this case is more than the woman. It is everyone who cares about her and everyone who fears suffering the same act.
A report released this week by the American Civil Liberties Union and the MergerWatch Project documents the rise in Catholic-sponsored or -affiliated hospitals and the negative impact of that rise on women’s access to reproductive health care.
The report, Miscarriage of Medicine: The Growth of Catholic Hospitals and the Threat to Reproductive Health Care, concludes that, by 2011, approximately one in nine acute-care beds in the United States was in a Catholic-sponsored or -affiliated hospital, and ten of the 25 largest hospital systems were Catholic-sponsored. That’s an increase of 16 percent in the number of Catholic acute-care hospitals between 2001 and 2011. In contrast, the report found that the number of public and nonprofit hospitals in the country overall declined. Only one other area—for-profit hospitals—experienced market growth during this time.
According to the report, the increase in Catholic-owned or -sponsored hospitals does not just represent a consolidation of the hospital marketplace, it threatens women’s access to reproductive health care. That’s because Catholic-owned and -sponsored hospitals abide by the “Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services” issued by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). The directives govern care at these facilities and prohibit a range of reproductive health services, including contraception, sterilization, many infertility treatments, and abortion care, even when a woman’s health or life is in danger. The directives often also restrict the ability of hospital staff to provide patients with full information and referrals for care that conflict with religious teachings.
“As our report shows, even as Catholic hospitals open their doors to people of all faiths and accept billions of taxpayer dollars, when it comes to reproductive health care, these facilities can place religious doctrine above patient health care needs,” Louise Melling, ACLU deputy legal director and a co-author of the report, said in a statement. “Medical standards, not religious doctrine, should guide medical care.”
The problem is the surprisingly easy access teens and young adults have to not just one gun, but multiple guns and nearly limitless ammunition. Lock down your guns and ammunition and restrict their access to your children, teens and young adults — unless you’re around to supervise. Even guns the teen may own. This would go a long way to helping prevent future tragedies.2
This infringes on nobody’s rights. All it does is put up a barrier to impair — and perhaps prevent — a distraught teen or young adult from grabbing a gun and killing a bunch of people. If every American gun owner committed to restricting and curtailing unsupervised access of their guns to their children, teens and young adults, I think that would have a much greater impact than more mental health treatment ever would.3
I know it can be extremely challenging as a parent, but also being a more involved parent in your teen or young adult’s life might help too. That costs no money, restricts nobody’s civil liberties, and just requires a little more commitment and effort on a parent’s part. While I understand teens can sometimes be moody and secretive, we shouldn’t use a broad generalization as an excuse from disconnecting from their lives. “But they don’t want me in their life!” is the common retort. Well, as long as they live in your home and you pay their bills, guess what — you still have the power (and responsibility) to keep parenting them. And that means involving yourself in their life to some degree and understanding what they’re up to.
None of this, however, will stop future school shootings or mass murders. But a combination of these two latter things — restricting access to guns and ammunition, and being a more involved parent — might just help reduce their occurrence.
Regardless of your ideas about Jury Nullification, this is an interesting video. I would really appreciate a discussion of it’s contents with those who have take the time to watch.
I recently had the privilege of joining three jury nullification heavyweights on a panel hosted by the International Drug Policy Reform Conference. The discussion focused on how strategic jury nullification can be used to dismantle the War on Drugs.
If you watch this 84-minute panel from beginning to end, you’ll become a jury nullification genius. But if you don’t have the time to spare, I’ve prepared a rough transcription below featuring my favorite quotes and moments. If you want to jump to the the beginning of a specific speaker’s transcript or video presentation, you can do that after the jump.
Clay Conrad is the writer of Jury Nullification: Evolution of a Doctrine, the leading academic
Looks like your future medical career is safe for the time being. I’ve never been too fond of the idea of replacing doctors with machines primarily because its such a noble profession, and I see doctors as heroes.
Robots may be gaining an edge in package delivery, perhaps even telemarketing, but a new study says that surgeries performed using robots aren’t any more successful than traditional surgical methods. What they are, however, is more expensive.
I am coming out of the closet. I am an Orthodox rabbi and an advocate for gay marriage.
The history of the theological issue is complicated, but the moral issue is increasingly clear. Faith leaders must stand as public allies; private support is no longer enough. Fifteen states and counting have formally approved marriage equality. It’s time that traditional faith leaders stand for gay rights, including the right to marriage.
As an Orthodox Jew, I believe the Bible was given by G-d, that Jewish law is binding, and that change in our religious practice cannot happen impetuously. It also means that I take the pervasive biblical call for justice very seriously. I am pro-gay-rights because I am an Orthodox rabbi, not in spite of it.
I only officiate at marriages between Jewish men and women according to the framework of the tradition, but I will argue (and advocate) adamantly for the political rights of gay people to marry. I believe the essence of religious conviction is that we must do what is right, not what is popular. As I have come to understand, there are five important reasons that my identity and values as an Orthodox rabbi compel me to support same-sex civil marriage.
I have empathy for those seeking loving relationships.
The rabbis of the Talmud actually suggested that it is as difficult to find a life partner as it was for G-d to split the sea for the Israelites during their Exodus from Egypt (Sotah 2a). The most beautiful and blessed aspect of my life is my family. I cannot imagine the pain and suffering that I would feel if I were deprived of my right to return home, in full dignity, each day to my loving wife and the delight of my daughter. The thought of being legally denied the ability to commit to my wife or raise our own children is horrifying. How can I enjoy these freedoms and not advocate for those struggling to secure similar full rights for themselves and the ones they care for?
Former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will lead the U.S. delegation to the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics next year in Sochi, Russia.
The White House says tennis champion Billie Jean King and U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul will join the opening ceremony delegation. So will figure skater Brian Boitano and presidential adviser Rob Nabors.
Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns will lead the closing ceremony delegation. He will be joined by McFaul, Olympic medal-winners Bonnie Blair, a speed skater; Caitlin Cahow, an ice hockey player; and Eric Heiden, a speed skater.
King and Cahow are both openly gay athletes. Gay rights groups have urged the Obama administration to use the delegation selection to make a point about Russia’s treatment of gays and lesbians.
Russia’s parliament on Wednesday passed an amnesty bill that will likely apply to the 30-member crew of a Greenpeace ship detained after an Arctic protest, but it wasn’t immediately clear if and when the activists would be allowed to leave the country.
The amnesty, which also would likely free the two jailed members of the Pussy Riot punk band, has been largely viewed as the Kremlin’s attempt to soothe criticism of Russia’s human rights records ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi in February. But opposition lawmakers argued it doesn’t go nearly far enough and the complicated legislation appeared to leave many questions open.
The United States Senate approved a bill Wednesday that restores aid to Egypt in full at $1.6 billion vis-a-vis granting U.S. President Barack Obama the “power to waive a federal law based on national security,” according to Agence France-Presse Thursday.
The bill, drafted by Senators Robert Menendez and Bob Corker, gives the President the power to waive a US coup law restriction for up to a year if “aid is deemed essential for national security.”
The US had previously suspended aid to Egypt in October this year, deciding not to send previously planned shipments of 10 Apache helicopters worth $500 million, M1A1 tank kits, Harpoon anti-ship missiles and $260 million in cash assistance until Egypt could demonstrate that “credible progress” has been made “towards an inclusive government set up through free and fair elections.”