"We as a polity seem to think policing is the solution to every social problem." Political scientist Naomi Murakawa's book The First Civil Right: How Liberals Built Prison America tackles assumptions about how we got to today and what needs to change. In an interview at the Marshall Project, Murakawa argues "those being sentenced under punitive sentencing guidelines it doesn’t make a difference to them that Sen. Ted Kennedy was liberal and overall had a good voting record." [more inside]
“prisoners are the slaves of today, and that slavery affects our society economically, morally and politically.” (pdf)
stories.. that expose both the depths of what was taken from them and the challenges of rebuilding the lives they once had
Unlike the soft forms of social control — meaning the ameliorative and redistributive welfare programs of the Great Society — the new model of social control does not come with dangerous notions of "equality" and "social inclusion." Today, the poor are thoroughly locked down, as is our political imagination about what poverty means. Law enforcement has moved to the center of domestic politics; state violence is perhaps more than ever a constant, regular, and normal feature of poor people’s lives. —The Making of the American Police State, Christian Parenti
Kalief Browder, held for three years on Rikers Island without charge, has taken his own life. Browder was first jailed at Rikers while he was a minor. All but forgotten by the Bronx District Attorney's office, he was beaten and at times held in solitary while awaiting a trial that never happened.
NY Mag on the fallout of false testimony that sends an innocent parent to jail.
Director and/or star of many of the greatest films ever made including The Great Dictator (2:05:16) [Globe scene and the eternally goosebump providing Final speech], The Immigrant (20:01), The Gold Rush (1:11:49), City Lights (1:22:40), Modern Times (1:27:01), and Monsieur Verdoux (1:59:03), Charlie Chaplin's movies have entered the public domain in most countries. Below the fold is an annotated list of all 82 of his official short and feature films in chronological order, as well as several more, with links to where you can watch them; it's not like you had work to do right? [more inside]
London Metropolitan Police formulated policy of refusing bail to all arrested in London riots which might have influenced high remand in custody rate.
"I realized that I was one of those extremely rare individuals who was a former POW of the drug war, and who got out and had the opportunity to share his story with the world." "It kind of makes an activist out of you when 3 helicopters land in your backyard and guys jump out with guns and destroy your place before your very eyes." Exile Nation is a documentary [complete film] [trailer] and an ongoing memoir, a work of “spiritual journalism”, and eventually "a documentary archive of interviews and testimonies […] revealing the far-ranging consequences of the War on Drugs to the American Criminal Justice System." [more inside]