Baltimore photojournalist J. M. Giordano of the City Paper has been on the front lines of protests in the wake of Freddie Gray’s death in police custody. Yesterday morning, Giordano and another protestor were apparently swarmed by police officers and beaten — and the whole thing was caught on camera.
Reports say that about 100 Baltimore City officers and 30 residents were involved in the early morning clash. When Giordano was pushed to the ground and surrounded by officers, City Paper managing editor Baynard Woods was nearby and managed to shoot some video of the incident.
Twenty-two months ago, the Supreme Court — perhaps not fully realizing that it was doing so — set off a constitutional revolution. In a decision that spoke somewhat tentatively about an “evolving understanding of the meaning of equality,” the Court in United States v. Windsor saw in that understanding a deep even if new respect in America for the dignity of same-sex couples who choose to marry.
What followed from that, with astonishing speed, was that the list of states where such marriages became legal expanded from twelve to thirty-six. Lower federal courts, in particular, led the way. On Tuesday, at a two-and-a-half-hour hearing, the Supreme Court confronts a simple question: did those courts go astray, and misread what Windsor really meant?
A cabinet shelf full of about one hundred and fifty briefs introduced the Justices to that question from many angles. But the actual outcome of the case known as Obergefell v. Hodges could well depend upon how the Court answers three core onstitutional issues. Each by itself, in fact, could be decisive: who decides? what right is at issue? what is the constitutional test?
When the Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday on same-sex marriage, they will come from four people that many Americans probably have never heard of: attorneys Mary Bonauto, Douglas Hallward-Driemeier, John Bursch and Joseph Whalen.
But it will be through their voices — Bonauto and Hallward-Driemeier for same-sex marriage, and Bursch and Whalen arguing for state bans against it — that the court will decide whether gay and lesbian couples can marry and have their marriages recognized in all 50 states.
Bonauto and Hallward-Driemeier were selected last month after a legal “bake-off” of sorts in Michigan to decide who would advocate for gay marriage before the high court. Details about the bake-off remain under wraps, but those familiar with the process say that in order to select the best representative before the high court, lawyers typically negotiate among themselves. The winners are picked based on several factors, including how they perform in mock trials as well as how deeply lawyers have been involved in the issue to be heard over time.
Interesting attack angle from the ACLU, but everyone’s right to safety trumps a handful of children’s rights to public education. Also the state could create and provide an online homeschool curricula and testing for the unvaccinated if push comes to shove.
The bill they came to defeat would end “personal belief exemptions” and require almost all California children attending public or private school to be immunized. Children with legitimate medical reasons, such as compromised immune systems due to chemotherapy, are excused. So are home-schooled children.
After the bill was amended to include multiple-family home schools and public school independent study programs in the definition of home-schooling, it passed easily out of committee.
The moms, who were wary of me but willing to make their case, will be back at the Capitol next week when the law is taken up by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
This time, they will have an unexpected ally: the ACLU.
Footage that was recorded moments before a US marshal destroyed a woman’s cell phone has now emerged. It turns out the phone was shattered and no longer usable, but the footage was intact in the internal storage, giving us a second point of view into what happened.
In the video above, NBC Los Angeles shares and discusses what transpired in the moments leading up to the police encounter that everyone is talking about now.
The footage shows that the woman was shooting video of a raid by federal agents on a meeting by the notorious biker gang the Mongols. An officer walks near Beatriz Paez and tells her to leave that spot and go to safety.
“This is unsafe right now, you’re right in the line of the fire,” an officer tells her. “Go across the street and film all you want.”
The warning about getting across the street makes no sense. And somebody should get some police line tape to the marshals.
Once again, the GOP shows how much they love the Constitution by having Steve King introduce a bill which would remove the ability for Federal Courts to hear any case involving marriage equality and other conservative issues:
“For too long, federal courts have overstepped their constitutionally limited duty to interpret the Constitution.” King said in a news release. “Rather, federal courts have perverted the Constitution to make law and create constitutional rights to things such as privacy, birth control, and abortion. These Unenumerated, so-called constitutionally-protected rights were not envisioned by our Founding Fathers.”
King’s bill strips way Article III of the Constitution, which gives federal courts the jurisdiction to hear or decide any question pertaining to the interpretation of, or the validity under the Constitution of, any type of marriage. The bill also prohibits federal funds from being used for any litigation in, or enforcement of any order or judgment by, any federal court.
It should come as no surprise that King didn’t come up with this on his own:
The actual idea for the bill comes from virulent homophobe Janet Porter.
But how can we affect the Supreme Court? Good question. Article 3, Section 2 of the Constitution provides the answer: “The Supreme Court shall have appellate jurisdiction…with such exceptions…as the Congress shall make.”
The marriage case before the Supreme Court is an appellate case-that means Congress can make exceptions-or remove jurisdiction before they can redefine marriage!
We have a sponsor in Congress drafting the legislation right now to restrain the judges.
The lengths these people will go to deny people their basic rights and push their theocratic dogma is sickening.
The sheriff for metro Phoenix begins a four-day hearing Tuesday that could bring him fines, damage his credibility and make him politically vulnerable for his acknowledged violations of a judge’s orders in a racial profiling case.
Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio has acknowledged disobeying the judge’s pretrial order that barred his immigration enforcement patrols. He also has accepted responsibility for his agency’s failure to turn over traffic-stop videos in the profiling case and bungling a plan to gather such recordings from officers once some videos were discovered.
The hearing marks the boldest attempt to hold the normally defiant sheriff personally responsible for his actions.
Arpaio is among the nearly two dozen people on the witness list, though it’s unclear when he’ll be called testify.
As Warren Buffett famously observed, “…while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks.” He was referring to the fact that capital gains earned by wealthy investors are taxed at a much lower rate than wages earned by workers. And while commissions paid to shoe salesmen and bonuses paid to bankers are taxed as ordinary income, the performance pay earned by private equity firm partners for managing an investment fund — so-called carried interest — is also taxed at the lower capital gains rate. This may be outrageous, but at least it’s legal.
The same cannot be said for the tax dodge used by private equity firm partners to convert the ordinary income they receive from their fixed management fees into additional capital gains. The partners at Bain Capital famously waived over $1 billion of management fees over a 10-year period, saving these partners, at a single firm, over $250 million of taxes on what was, essentially, their salary income.
It has become all too clear lately that to be pregnant, to be in labor, or to birth a child is to put oneself at the mercy of larger powers—powers that sometimes seem unconvinced of women’s humanity. Anti-choice politicians are often the most egregious in leaving out any trace of women’s agency from their rhetoric around pregnancy and abortion. But now we are increasingly seeing evidence that some health-care providers, both in the United States and globally, tend to also reproduce the persistent narrative that girls and women relinquish their human rights when they conceive. Beginning last year, advocates launched the International Day for Maternal Health and Rights on April 11 to ensure that women’s rights in pregnancy, labor, and childbirth become an international priority, including among health providers and politicians.
The cases of Purvi Patel in Indiana and Las 17 in El Salvador have exposed violations of women’s human rights within health systems in the United States and internationally. As has been well-documented by others at RH Reality Check, Purvi Patel’s health providers, who were supposed to be focused on her wellbeing, instead reported her to the police. In El Salvador, 17 women have been imprisoned for miscarriages and other pregnancy complications, with some health providers pressured by strict anti-abortion laws to become witnesses against them.
I’m of two minds about this: the woman very obviously has problems, but diagnosis from the bench?
A woman convicted of fatally poisoning her 5-year-old son with salt in his hospital feeding tube got leniency on her murder sentence on Wednesday because she has a mental illness that she has refused to acknowledge, the judge said.
The woman, Lacey Spears, 27, was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison for the 2014 death of Garnett-Paul Spears at a hospital in Westchester County.
Prosecutors said Ms. Spears, a former resident of neighboring Rockland County, force-fed high concentrations of sodium through the boy’s stomach tube because she craved the attention his illness brought to her, especially through her numerous postings on social media.