Can Brock See Yet?

Also published on Democratic Underground at www.democraticunderground.com

David Brock’s “Blinded By the Right” is an apolitical book, and while it denounces and apologizes for the “conservative movement” that replaced politics with sex scandals, it does not make a political apology.

Brock does not say he is sorry that people died and suffered in the richest country on the planet because they had no health insurance. He does not say he regrets seeing families booted read more

The Bible Bus

Many people, even residents of Culpeper County, Va., are shocked to learn that public school students in the county are routinely taken out of class to be proselytized with Christianity. “That’s illegal!” everyone exclaims. If more people knew about this practice outside of Culpeper and other counties where it goes on, I imagine it would receive as much attention as proposals to have a “moment of silence” or post ten ancient orders on a wall. On the other hand, read more

Caring for Criminals

12 January, 1999
I have sympathy for people who do cruel, selfish and destructive things – in many cases these correspond to committing crimes – because I think these people would be happier if they did not do these things, and this quite apart from the punishment often inflicted on them by their societies. I do not sympathize with the sick culture of much American music, film, and television that romanticizes crime. I do not fail to sympathize with the victims of crimes, read more

Living Wage Debate

Published at www.loper.org/~george

Letters to the Editor: David Swanson Responds to Steven Stern on the Imposition of a ‘Living Wage’

George,

Professor Stern, like most opponents of wage standards, believes the answers can all be found in an intro to economics course. And, like most opponents of wage standards, he believes proponents have their hearts in the right place but are just remarkably ignorant.

When great numbers of people of all levels of academic achievement hold a view read more

WWII Memorial

Bob Dole wants a WWII memorial built on the Mall in the next three or four years, or else, he fears, no WWII veterans will be around to see it.

Well, if the idea is to have a memorial for WWII veterans to see, I say we build it as fast as physically possible. We won’t use marble, but we could put up a pre-fab memorial constructed with the techniques used in building a Wal-Mart and have it operational by, say, next Thursday. Then – to prove that our failure to honor slaves, Native read more

Earl Washington is Pardoned!

Earl Washington Update (published at http://www.justicedenied.org)

By David Swanson, JD Staff Writer

Governor Jim Gilmore of Virginia pardoned Earl Washington Jr. of a 1982 murder on Oct. 2, 2000. But Washington has not been freed, as he is serving a sentence for an unrelated crime.

For the first time ever in Virginia, an innocent person condemned to death row has now been pardoned as the result of DNA testing. Earl Washington was convicted of murder 16 years ago, and the trial transcript — read more

Sex in the USA

January, 1999
When Woody Allen was accused of child molesting, a TV interviewer asked him if he had done it. Instead of answering, Woody pointed out the improbability that if he were going to do such a thing he would have chosen to do it at an unusually inconvenient time in a house full of people (as was alleged). Whether or not Woody is innocent, I think he is smart. If he had responded as the interviewer probably wanted him to, saying, “I would never do that! This is my daughter read more

Capital Punishment

The cover story in the Washington Post Magazine of Oct. 22, 2000, illustrates the following familiar and troubling points:
1) Legal systems in the United States, and often “counselors,” encourage and do little or nothing to oppose the idea that those suffering due to crimes will feel better if they hate and inflict suffering.

2) This idea is incorrect.

3) The media refuses to direct the conversation of this topic to what social scientists overwhelmingly agree would be the most effective, read more

Affirmative Action

I went to a duel on a recent evening in a large auditorium at the University of Virginia, with Linda Chavez and the dean of admissions, Mr. Blackburn, speaking on affirmative action. Both had good points, but I’d give Blackburn a clear victory. I’d guesstimate three-quarters of the audience had decided on that outcome in advance. The crowd was slightly rowdy, by UVa lecture-hall standards.

Chavez spoke first. She runs the Center for Equal Opportunity, in DC, and their reports on read more