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Criminal Justice

How to Invest in Miracles

Harriet McDonald | Posted 12.24.2014 | Impact
Harriet McDonald

By the time they were 18, each boy had lived in multiple foster homes. They survived their childhoods without compassion or stability. The idea of being "cared for" was a foreign concept.

10 Things People Don't Understand About 'Serial' Unless You're a Criminal Attorney

Tamara Shayne Kagel | Posted 12.24.2014 | Entertainment
Tamara Shayne Kagel

I've noticed that most people listening to "Serial" don't know some key facts about the criminal justice system. Here are some of the most common misconceptions I've noticed about people's comprehension of the legal system which ultimately we are all beholden to.

A Blueprint for Local Police Reform to Improve Legitimacy

Tara Lai Quinlan | Posted 12.24.2014 | Crime
Tara Lai Quinlan

While we certainly don't have all the answers, it's time to start talking about and funding constructive ways to reform policing to quell anger by improving legitimacy and community relations.

Dealing With the Racial Nature of Wrongful Convictions

David A. Love | Posted 12.23.2014 | Black Voices
David A. Love

The wrongful convictions data coming from the Innocence Project provide all the proof we need that all things are not equal in the application of American justice. Justice is color coded, and truly a matter of black and white. Now is the time to change that.

TNC: Why Talking About 'Police Reform' Obscures The Task

The Atlantic | Posted 12.23.2014 | Crime

Talking about "police reform" obscures the task. Today's policies are, at the very least, the product of democratic will....

Forensic Science Is Not CSI, in Ferguson or Anywhere Else

William Lynch III | Posted 12.19.2014 | Crime
William Lynch III

None of this is to say that we need to toss all the evidence out and start at square one. Nor am I saying that the evidence supporting Wilson's account is totally false. My point is that everyone must realize that forensic science is not absolute like on television.

The Faults of the American Criminal Justice System Run Deeper Than Race

Nathan Robinson | Posted 12.19.2014 | Politics
Nathan Robinson

Race is the central fact of American criminal justice. But race is not the only fact. Understanding this system, and dismantling it, requires understanding that the existence of racism doesn't preclude the possibility of class domination.

Hispanic Evangelicals Call For Criminal Justice Reform

Rev. Gabriel Salguero | Posted 12.18.2014 | Religion
Rev. Gabriel Salguero

We should be asking how we can best respond to crime in ways that help communities to be safe, healthy, healed, and whole. We should work to prevent crime before it's too late. We should hold people accountable for the harm they have caused, but we should do it in ways that create opportunities for different choices in the future.

Black Men Openly Carrying a Gun in a Holster Will End Racial Profiling in America

H. A. Goodman | Posted 12.12.2014 | Politics
H. A. Goodman

A legal, constitutionally protected way to defeat racism is right in front of us. After all, everyone can relate to not wanting to be viewed as a criminal, regardless of how they feel about climate change or taxes.

Ariel Edwards-Levy

Americans Overwhelmingly Say Police Should Keep Disputes With Civilians From Escalating

HuffingtonPost.com | Ariel Edwards-Levy | Posted 12.10.2014 | Politics

An overwhelming majority of Americans say it's the job of police officers to keep disputes with unarmed citizens from getting out of hand, a new poll ...

Dana Liebelson

Black Teenager Taken Out Of School And Jailed For A Month Without Probable Cause, Lawsuit Claims

HuffingtonPost.com | Dana Liebelson | Posted 12.10.2014 | Politics

In September, police took a 17-year-old African-American boy out of high school in Cincinnati, Ohio, and arrested him on the suspicion that he had par...

Eric Garner's Death Was 'Legal' in the United States. America Killed Him, Not Police.

H. A. Goodman | Posted 12.05.2014 | Politics
H. A. Goodman

The manner in which law enforcement protects this country is a reflection of the values within our society, and everything from "stop-and-frisk" to racial profiling speak volumes of who we are as a nation.

'Failure to Protect' Laws Punish Victims of Domestic Violence

Adam Banner | Posted 12.04.2014 | Crime
Adam Banner

True justice is not measured by what we think we would do in a similar situation; it is measured by the law and how the law applies to certain facts. It is time to stop using the law to blame the victims, and instead find solutions that truly protect our nation's children from violence and abuse.

Ferguson Upheaval Has Roots in America's War on Drugs

Yolande Cadore | Posted 12.03.2014 | Politics
Yolande Cadore

I firmly believe that America's drug war has become the legs on which our broken criminal justice system now stands.

The Penalty Is a Film That Must Be Seen

David A. Love | Posted 12.02.2014 | Arts
David A. Love

Given that a state sanctioned policy such as the death penalty is carried out in the name of the public -- yet has operated under a shroud of secrecy for far too long -- it is fitting that someone should examine the nuts and bolts of the machinery of death.

Dear Baltimore Sun: Do Your Homework

Robert Greenwald | Posted 12.01.2014 | Media
Robert Greenwald

Who holds the accountability cops accountable? Who makes them issue the retractions that they demand of others? Case in point: a media critic for the Baltimore Sun, David Zurawik. Last week, he blasted CNN for including Van Jones in its coverage of Ferguson on the night of the grand jury decision.

What Death Penalty Opponents Don't Get

The Marshall Project | James Ridgeway and Jean Casella | Posted 12.01.2014 | Politics

This commentary was written for The Marshall Project, a nonprofit news organization. For more criminal justice news produced and curated by The Marsh...

Young Global Leader Embraces Prison Reform

Jim Luce | Posted 11.29.2014 | Impact
Jim Luce

One recent event held by the Osborne Association, an organization that the Foundation supports, really opened my eyes on the need to offer assistance to both incarcerated individuals and their families.

Getting the Facts Right About the Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

Nancy Leong | Posted 11.30.2014 | Politics
Nancy Leong

As we discuss and debate the grand jury's decision not to indict Darren Wilson, we'll inevitably have differences of opinion -- some slight; some extreme. But we owe it to one another to ensure that our opinions are founded on a correct understanding of the underlying facts.

8 Things We Can Learn From the Events in Ferguson, Missouri

Jeff Steinmann | Posted 11.26.2014 | Impact
Jeff Steinmann

We can look to politicians or the judicial system for change, but in a representative democracy, the government doesn't change until the people it represents change. Here are eight things we can learn from the current situation in Ferguson, Missouri and the surrounding region.

College Rape and Radical Feminism: The Forgotten Feminist Roots of Today's Anti-Rape Activism

Thea Johnson | Posted 11.25.2014 | Women
Thea Johnson

The fact that this conversation about rape can happen so openly on campuses and in the press is a testament to the tremendous successes of the radical feminist anti-rape movement of the early 1970s.

Ferguson: Cover of Darkness, Rays of Light

Randall Amster | Posted 11.25.2014 | Politics
Randall Amster

The convenient spectacle of "violence in the streets" obscures the perpetuation of "structural violence" everywhere.

On the Darren Wilson Grand Jury Decision

Ben Jealous | Posted 11.25.2014 | Black Voices
Ben Jealous

This is a sad day. The grand jury's decision is yet another sign that all of America's sons' lives are not yet valued equally in the eyes of our courts. All of America's fathers, mothers and children should stay outraged and in motion for progress until we are finally what we say we are: One Nation, Under God, Indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for All. The path to these goals is focused advocacy and, where necessary, non-violent direct action. Those are the strategies that led to the passage of the Voting Rights Act and Civil Rights Acts 50 years ago and the outlawing of racial profiling in New York City just two years ago. Today we are all Michael Brown. Tomorrow we must ensure each of our lives is valued equally in the eyes of our nation's laws, law enforcement officers, and courts.

'Felons, Not Families' Oversimplifies a Complex Reality

Lauren-Brooke Eisen | Posted 11.24.2014 | Politics
Lauren-Brooke Eisen

While President Obama should be applauded for reaching past the partisan gridlock in Congress that has made it impossible to improve the lives of millions of families torn apart because of strict immigration laws, his emphasis on families over felons seems outdated and a rhetorical step backward, not forward.

The Worst Place in the World for a Child

Charles Radcliffe | Posted 11.21.2014 | Impact
Charles Radcliffe

Prison really is the worst place in the world to put a child. Which is why, as a response to juvenile criminality, it should only ever be considered a response of absolute last resort.