Political Mojo | Mother Jones http://www.motherjones.com/Blogs/2015/08 http://www.motherjones.com/files/motherjonesLogo_google_206X40.png Mother Jones logo http://www.motherjones.com en First Gay Couple Can Marry in County Where Clerk Went to Jail http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/kim-davis-gay-marriage-first-couple- <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Friday, William Smith and James Yates became the first same-sex couple to be issued a marriage license in Rowan County, Kentucky.</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">BREAKING: William Smith and James Yates just obtained a marriage license from the Rowan County Clerk's Office. <a href="http://t.co/rBcxunFZxb">pic.twitter.com/rBcxunFZxb</a></p> &mdash; Dominic Holden (@dominicholden) <a href="https://twitter.com/dominicholden/status/639773908921663489">September 4, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Video of first couple leaving the courthouse after getting their marriage license <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/wsaz?src=hash">#wsaz</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ky?src=hash">#ky</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/kimdavis?src=hash">#kimdavis</a> <a href="http://t.co/bcAWGPJozq">pic.twitter.com/bcAWGPJozq</a></p> &mdash; Taylor Eaton (@WSAZTaylorEaton) <a href="https://twitter.com/WSAZTaylorEaton/status/639781339458334720">September 4, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>Since the Supreme Court's historic decision invalidating gay marriage bans nationwide in June, county clerk Kim Davis has refused to issue licenses to gay couples citing her religious beliefs. Her continued refusal to do so <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/kentucky-clerk-kim-davis-contempt-court" target="_blank">finally landed her in jail yesterday,</a> after a federal judge held her in contempt of law.</p> <p>US District Judge David <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/05/us/kim-davis-same-sex-marriage.html?smid=tw-nytimes&amp;smtyp=cur&amp;_r=0" target="_blank">Bunning offered to release</a> the defiant clerk if she promised not to prevent her deputies from processing same-sex couples. Five of the six deputies have agreed to do so. Davis' son, a deputy clerk, was the only one to refuse.</p> <p>Davis' husband, who insisted his family's opposition to same-sex marriages did not mean they "hate these people," was <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/09/04/us-usa-gaymarriage-kentucky-idUSKCN0R13S220150904" target="_blank">reportedly</a> seen outside the clerk's office on Friday holding a sign, "Welcome to Sodom and Gomorrah."</p> <p>Smith and Yates' license effectively ends the months-long showdown.</p></body></html> MoJo Gay Rights Supreme Court Fri, 04 Sep 2015 13:39:35 +0000 Inae Oh 283416 at http://www.motherjones.com Here's the Conservative Playbook for Tearing Down Black Lives Matter http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/conservative-record-criminalizing-black-social-movements <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>In the wake of last Friday's <a href="http://abc13.com/news/mom-of-man-in-custody-after-deadly-ambush-my-son-is-innocent/961336/" target="_blank">murder of a Harris County, Texas, police deputy</a>, Fox News pundits have <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/black-lives-matter-fox-news-hate-group_55e5c102e4b0b7a9633a3b12" target="_blank">bent over backward</a> to find a way to connect the killing to the Black Lives Matter movement. A guest on the Fox talk show <em>The Five</em> on Monday <a href="http://www.breitbart.com/video/2015/08/31/fncs-tom-shillue-its-shut-it-down-time-for-criminal-organization-black-lives-matter/" target="_blank">called the movement a "criminal organization,"</a> and <a href="http://mediamatters.org/video/2015/08/31/fox-host-why-has-the-black-lives-matter-movemen/205261" target="_blank">several hosts</a>, including <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMbNjREM7Qk" target="_blank">Bill O'Reilly</a>, described it as a "hate group."</p> <p>Harris County law enforcement officials have yet to determine a motive for the shooting, and suspect Shannon Miles had been <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/31/us/texas-deputy-killed-gas-station/" target="_blank">found mentally incompetent</a><strong> </strong>to stand trial on a felony assault charge in 2012. But that hasn't stopped Fox News from showing a <a href="http://video.foxnews.com/v/4455408601001/are-protests-fueling-the-war-on-law-enforcement/?#sp=show-clips" target="_blank">recent clip</a> of protesters at the Minnesota State Fair chanting, "Pigs in a blanket, fry 'em like bacon," as pundits discussed the Texas killing, or from running inflammatory <a href="http://mediamatters.org/video/2015/08/31/fox-news-graphic-calls-black-lives-matter-the-m/205260" target="_blank">on-screen banners</a> that read "Murder Movement" and "Black Lives Matter Taunts Cop Killings."</p> <p>But this is not a new tactic from the right. Conservatives have long attempted to discredit black social movements by casting them as criminal. In fact, the law-and-order rhetoric they've espoused since the civil rights movement was invented to do just that.</p> <p>In the 1950s, for example, Southern conservative lawmakers and law enforcement officials argued that acts of civil disobedience by black civil rights activists violated the law, and they <a href="https://books.google.com/books?id=reDzBZ3pXqsC&amp;pg=PA59&amp;source=gbs_toc_r&amp;cad=4#v=onepage&amp;q&amp;f=false" target="_blank">criticized support for civil rights legislation as rewarding lawbreakers</a>. Federal courts that struck down Jim Crow laws, they chided, were soft on crime.</p> <p>This rhetoric went mainstream in the late 1960s following the major civil rights victories of the decade. Richard Nixon and avowed segregationist George Wallace both ran on law-and-order platforms in the 1968 presidential election. In his speeches and <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ol6RWSqNf7c" target="_blank">political ads</a>, Nixon appealed to the "non-shouters and non-demonstrators" who were "not racist" and "not guilty of the crime that plagued the land," contrasting them with protesters who had "cities up in smoke," a thinly veiled reference to the race riots of the decade. Nixon <a href="https://books.google.com/books?id=MoPvCAAAQBAJ&amp;pg=PA58&amp;lpg=PA58&amp;dq=nixon+1968+%E2%80%9Cgoing+too+far+in+weakening+the+peace+forces+against+the+criminal+forces.%E2%80%9D&amp;source=bl&amp;ots=11BAnmDQrm&amp;sig=vhqTemuuklY0Iq8YX6q6Z0wCCl4&amp;hl=en&amp;sa=X&amp;sqi=2&amp;ved=0CB4Q6AEwAGoVChMIvZy2uLvbxwIVkDiICh2MMASd#v=onepage&amp;q=nixon%201968%20%E2%80%9Cgoing%20too%20far%20in%20weakening%20the%20peace%20forces%20against%20the%20criminal%20forces.%E2%80%9D&amp;f=false" target="_blank">blamed the courts</a> for "going too far in weakening the peace forces against the criminal forces." He used this coded language to appeal to racist voters at a time when overt racism was becoming less socially acceptable.</p> <p>Conservative politicians, pundits, and voters continued using this language to <a href="http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=9802E5DE1030E034BC4A52DFBE668383679EDE" target="_blank">rail against the Black Power movement</a> in the 1970s and tie organizations like the Black Panther Party to neighborhood crime and increased drug use. They <a href="http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=9802E5DE1030E034BC4A52DFBE668383679EDE" target="_blank">pointed to the ongoing race riots</a> and the increase in urban crime that accompanied the migration of black Southerners to Northern cities during that period, as evidence that the Panthers' philosophy of armed self-defense was contributing to violence and criminal activity.<strong> </strong>Nixon declared the war on drugs in 1971, prior to the <a href="http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/drugs/cron/" target="_blank">explosion of the drug trade</a> mid-decade, in a tough-on-crime move that functioned as a crackdown on the black people and communities that were supposedly "causing" crime, and the philosophy of racial equality that had contributed to it. (And similarly coded language was <a href="http://scholarship.law.berkeley.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1014&amp;context=bjalp" target="_blank">used to justify criminal-justice policies</a> that targeted black communities and produced the nation's mass incarceration crisis in the late 1980s and 1990s.)</p> <p>Now Fox News has targeted the Black Lives Matter movement in the same way. The movement is calling for an <em>end</em> to violence, and its national voices have <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/21/nypd-cop-killings-blacklivesmatter_n_6362400.html" target="_blank">condemned violence against the police</a> on numerous occasions.<strong> </strong>But the right insists it is to blame for murders of police officers. The number of peaceful protests dwarfs the number that have seen looting and property destruction, but conservative pundits <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyOqmDOfDEk" target="_blank">insist Black Lives Matter protesters are "thugs"</a> and that the movement's rhetoric encourages violence. Just as they sought to discredit the movement to upset the Jim Crow social order, these right-wing voices now seek to discredit the movement to upend the current system of racist policing.</p> <p>Murders of police aren't the fault of the Black Lives Matter movement. But don't expect to hear that on Fox News anytime soon.</p></body></html> MoJo Civil Liberties Race and Ethnicity Top Stories police Fri, 04 Sep 2015 10:00:08 +0000 Brandon Ellington Patterson 283261 at http://www.motherjones.com Germany Has Taken In 800,000 Refugees. Guess How Many the US Has Taken In? http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/germany-has-taken-800000-refugees-guess-how-many-us-has-taken <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Germany is set to take in <a href="http://qz.com/488413/germany-is-the-first-european-country-to-free-syrian-refugees-from-a-draconian-bureaucratic-trap/" target="_blank">800,000 refugees</a>&nbsp;by the end of the year.</p> <p>America, a country that won two World Wars, went to the moon, <em>and</em> did <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g25G1M4EXrQ" target="_blank">"the other things,"</a> has taken in, well, far fewer.</p> <p>Quoth <em><a href="http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/03/aid-groups-senators-us-take-in-65000-syrian-refugees" target="_blank">the Guardian</a>:</em></p> <blockquote> <p>The US has admitted <a href="https://www.wrapsnet.org/default.aspx" target="_blank">approximately 1,500 Syrian refugees</a> since the beginning of the civil war there in 2011, mostly within the last fiscal year. Since April, the number of admitted refugees has more than doubled from <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/18/world/middleeast/un-calls-on-western-nations-to-shelter-syrian-refugees.html" target="_blank">an estimate</a> of 700.</p> ... <p>Anna Greene, IRC&rsquo;s director of policy &amp; advocacy for US programs, said the 1,500 people the US has admitted thus far &ldquo;doesn&rsquo;t even begin to scratch the surface of what is needed and what could really make a difference&rdquo;.</p> </blockquote> <p>Oxfam wants the US to up that number to 70,000 by the end of 2016.</p> <p><em>Correction: This post and its&nbsp;headline originally said that Germany planned to take in 800,000 Syrian refugees by the end of the year. That is incorrect. <a href="http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/aug/20/germany-raises-estimate-refugee-arrivals-800000" target="_blank">It is 800,000 refugees total.&nbsp;</a></em></p></body></html> MoJo Foreign Policy Human Rights Immigration Thu, 03 Sep 2015 22:10:16 +0000 Ben Dreyfuss 283386 at http://www.motherjones.com Donald Trump Screws Up GOP Loyalty Pledge, Making it Extra-Meaningless http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/donald-trump-screws-loyalty-pledge-gop <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Thursday, Donald Trump pledged his fealty to the Republican Party with a <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/09/donald-trump-just-setting-gop-his-biggest-prank-yet" target="_blank">largely meaningless pledge</a> not to run as an independent candidate during the 2016 campaign for the White House. In doing so, it appears the billionaire presidential hopeful also affixed the wrong date to his signature:</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Dear <a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump">@realDonaldTrump</a>, it's September, not August. <a href="http://t.co/R3Jw72Wobt">pic.twitter.com/R3Jw72Wobt</a></p> &mdash; Benny (@bennyjohnson) <a href="https://twitter.com/bennyjohnson/status/639501449475530752">September 3, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>Brilliant.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Thu, 03 Sep 2015 18:41:02 +0000 Inae Oh 283356 at http://www.motherjones.com Kansas Republicans May Have Just Shut Down the State's Court System http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/why-entire-kansas-court-system-could-shut-down <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>What happens to a legal appeal when there's no court to hear it?</p> <p>That's the tricky question before Kansas Republicans today as they grapple with the results of their own law, which threatens to shutter the state court system.</p> <p>On Wednesday night, a district judge in Kansas <a href="https://www.brennancenter.org/sites/default/files/press-releases/2015-CV-156%20Memorandum%20Decision%20and%20Order.pdf" target="_blank">struck down</a> a 2014 law that stripped the state Supreme Court of some of its administrative powers. The ruling has set off a bizarre constitutional power struggle between the Republican-controlled legislature and the state Supreme Court. At stake is whether the Kansas court system will lose its funding and shut down.</p> <p>Last year, the Kansas legislature passed a law that took away the top court's authority to appoint chief judges to the state's 31 judicial districts&mdash;a policy change Democrats believe was retribution for an ongoing dispute over school funding between the Supreme Court and the legislature. (<em>Mother Jones</em> <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/05/final-front-sam-brownbacks-battle-control-kansas" target="_blank">reported</a> on the standoff this spring.) When the legislature passed a two-year budget for the court system earlier this year, it inserted a clause stipulating that if a court ever struck down the 2014 administrative powers law, funding for the entire court system would be "null and void." Last night, that's what the judge did.</p> <p>Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt <a href="http://www.kansas.com/news/politics-government/article33603570.html#storylink=cpy" target="_blank">warned</a> that last night's decision &ldquo;could effectively and immediately shut off all funding for the judicial branch.&rdquo; That would lead to chaos. As Pedro Irigonegaray, an attorney for the Kansas judge who brought the legal challenge against the administrative law, put it, &ldquo;Without funding, our state courts would close, criminal cases would not be prosecuted, civil matters would be put on hold, real estate could not be bought or sold, adoptions could not be completed."</p> <p>Both parties in the case have agreed to ask that Wednesday's ruling remain on hold until it can be appealed to the state Supreme Court, so that there is a functioning court to hear the appeal. On Thursday, a judge <a href="http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2015/sep/03/court-stays-ruling-could-strip-state-judicial-bran/" target="_blank">granted</a> the stay. Meanwhile, lawyers involved in the case and advocates for judicial independence are preparing a legal challenge to the clause of the judicial budget that withholds court funding. Sometime in the next few months, the state Supreme Court is likely to rule on whether the legislature has the right to strip the Supreme Court of its administrative authority, and whether it can make funding for the courts contingent on the outcome of a court case.</p> <p>&ldquo;We have never seen a law like this before,"&nbsp;Randolph Sherman, a lawyer involved in fighting the administrative law, said in a statement, referring to the self-destruct mechanism in the judicial budget. "[I]t is imperative that we stop it before it throws the state into a constitutional crisis.&rdquo;</p> <p><em>This story has been updated.</em></p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Thu, 03 Sep 2015 17:42:03 +0000 Pema Levy 283326 at http://www.motherjones.com Kentucky Clerk Held in Contempt of Court for Refusing to Issue Gay Marriage Licenses http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/kentucky-clerk-kim-davis-contempt-court <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><em><strong>Update (9/3/2015, 1:09 p.m. EST):</strong> A federal judge has found Kim Davis in contempt of court. She has been taken into federal custody.</em></p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">BREAKING: Judge sends Rowan Clerk <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/KimDavis?src=hash">#KimDavis</a> to jail until she agrees to comply with his order to issue marriage licenses.</p> &mdash; heraldleader (@heraldleader) <a href="https://twitter.com/heraldleader/status/639484195694346240">September 3, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p><em>Explaining his decision, US District Judge David Bunning told Davis, "You don&rsquo;t strike me as someone who's contentious. I simply [find that] making this contempt finding is necessary."</em></p> <p><em>"Oaths means things," he added, <a href="http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/sep/03/kentucky-clerk-contempt-of-court-marriage-licenses?CMP=twt_gu" target="_blank">according to the Guardian</a>. Davis will be released if she agrees to comply with the judge's order to issue marriage licenses. "The court cannot condone the willful disobedience of its lawfully issued order," the judge <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/04/us/kim-davis-same-sex-marriage.html?hp&amp;action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;module=first-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news&amp;_r=0" target="_blank">said</a>.</em></p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-conversation="none" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Judge Bunning said that he wasn't convinced fines would have compelled Rowan County clerk Kim Davis comply with order to issue licenses</p> &mdash; Ryland Barton (@RylandKY) <a href="https://twitter.com/RylandKY/status/639485973856976897">September 3, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>Kim Davis, the <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/kentucky-clerk-gay-marriage-license-supreme-court" target="_blank">defiant Rowan county clerk</a> who cited "God's authority" for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, appeared in court Thursday in Kentucky. Groups both supporting and opposing Davis held dueling, boisterous rallies in front of throngs of journalists outside the courthouse. US District Judge David Bunning heard a motion from lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union Davis arguing Davis should be held in <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/09/03/politics/kentucky-clerk-same-sex-marriage-kim-davis/index.html" target="_blank">contempt of court</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>The appearance came amid Davis's ongoing failure to comply with the Supreme Court's landmark ruling that invalidated gay marriage bans nationwide. Since the decision in June, Davis has refused to issue marriage licenses <a href="http://http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/02/us/same-sex-marriage-kentucky-kim-davis.html" target="_blank">to both straight and same-sex couples</a>. Despite the Supreme Court denial of her emergency application requesting a delay on Monday, Davis continued to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples, creating testy scenes inside and outside the clerk's office, and drawing national attention.</p> <p>The showdown in Kentucky, the first time the issue of same-sex marriage has returned to the Supreme Court since June, has become a lightening rod for gay marriage opponents who argue that Davis' religious beliefs should allow her to defy the constitutional mandate. Both legal experts and same-sex marriage supporters say she has no legal standing.</p> <p>The scene on Thursday:</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Supporters of KY Clerk Kim Davis are demonstrating outside federal courthouse in Ashland for 11am contempt hearing. <a href="http://t.co/7wFKTtOBlM">pic.twitter.com/7wFKTtOBlM</a></p> &mdash; Dominic Holden (@dominicholden) <a href="https://twitter.com/dominicholden/status/639414048342306817">September 3, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>"The ACLU has asked she&nbsp;be fined in an amount sufficient to compel her compliance to the court's ruling," Ria Tabacco Mar, an ACLU attorney, <a href="http://www.newsweek.com/aclu-files-contempt-motion-against-kentucky-clerk-refusing-issue-same-sex-367529" target="_blank">told <em>Newsweek</em>.</a> "No one wants Kim Davis to go to jail, we just want her to follow the law and do her job."</p> <p><em>This is a breaking news post, and we'll update with more information as it becomes available.</em></p></body></html> MoJo Gay Rights Supreme Court Thu, 03 Sep 2015 13:56:33 +0000 Inae Oh 283296 at http://www.motherjones.com Hillary Clinton Announces Support to Ban Wall Street Bonuses for Government Officials http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/hillary-clinton-golden-parachutes-elizabeth-warren <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Monday, Hillary Clinton came out in support of legislation seeking to end the so-called "golden parachute" payouts that traditionally benefit private sector executives who take on jobs within the federal government&mdash;a practice long criticized by Wall Street reformers such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren.</p> <p>"The American people need to be able to trust that every single person in Washington&mdash;from the President of the United States all the way down to agency employees&mdash;is putting the interests of the people first," Clinton wrote in an blog post for the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/hillary-clinton/wall-street-revolving-door_b_8064504.html?ncid=tweetlnkushpmg00000067" target="_blank"><em>Huffington Post</em></a>, published Monday. "We want to do more to make sure that happens."</p> <p>Clinton's backing of the the Financial Services Conflict of Interest Act comes after a report in the <em>Intercept</em> last month that revealed <a href="https://theintercept.com/2015/07/30/two-big-reasons-hillary-clinton-isnt-taking-elizabeth-warrens-revolving-door-dare/" target="_blank">two senior-level State Department officials</a> during her time as secretary,&nbsp;Thomas Nides and Robert Hormats, had received hefty payments from Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs respectively after taking on jobs with the State Department.</p> <p>In July, Warren issued a challenge to all presidential candidates to support the legislation, <a href="http://www.thenation.com/article/elizabeth-warren-just-issued-a-major-challenge-to-all-presidential-contenders/" target="_blank">calling</a> it "a bill any presidential candidate should be able to cheer for."</p> <p>&iuml;&raquo;&iquest;"We have a presidential election coming up," she told a crowd in Phoenix. "I think anyone running for that job&mdash;anyone who wants the power to make every key economic appointment and nomination across the federal government&mdash;should say loud and clear that they agree: we don't run this country for Wall Street and mega corporations. We run it for people."</p> <p>Clinton's announcement on Monday shows she is listening closely to what Warren has to say.</p> <p>Since announcing her second run for president, the former secretary of state has embraced a number of policies close to Warren's heart, specifically on Wall Street reform. Last December, Clinton <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/02/hillary-clinton-liz-warren-nice-little-chat" target="_blank">reportedly met privately with Warren</a> to discuss her policy ideas. News of the conversation signaled Clinton could be ready to take a more populist approach to her campaign for the White House.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Money in Politics Wed, 02 Sep 2015 19:33:00 +0000 Inae Oh 283266 at http://www.motherjones.com Freddie Gray Hearings Open Amid Police Clashes http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/freddie-gray-hearings-open-with-police-clashes <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Hearings in the case against six Baltimore police officers charged in the death of Freddie Gray <a href="http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/freddie-gray/bs-md-ci-freddie-gray-hearing-20150902-story.html" target="_blank">began this morning</a> against an all-too-familiar backdrop of police confrontations with protesters.</p> <p>The first pretrial hearing of the case, involving six officers charged in <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/06/medical-examiner-freddie-gray-homicide" target="_blank">Gray&rsquo;s death in police custody</a>, opened with victories for the prosecution, as a judge denied motions to dismiss the case and to recuse the state's attorney. Outside the courthouse, protesters clashed with police. People on the scene described police <a href="https://twitter.com/revshiz/status/639078091822878720" target="_blank">grabbing women</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/anyaparampil/status/639069662492393473" target="_blank">harassing members of the press</a>, and restricting sidewalk access to the courthouse. Netta Elzie, a prominent black activist, also tweeted an account of Kwame Rose, another black activist and Baltimore resident, being hit by a police car and promptly arrested.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-video tw-align-center" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Baltimore. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FreddieGray?src=hash">#FreddieGray</a>. Baltimore police just arrested <a href="https://twitter.com/kwamerose">@kwamerose</a> <a href="http://t.co/p43ERG0Xml">pic.twitter.com/p43ERG0Xml</a></p> &mdash; ShordeeDooWhop (@Nettaaaaaaaa) <a href="https://twitter.com/Nettaaaaaaaa/status/639070203708620800">September 2, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet tw-align-center" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Baltimore's finest. Protest. 2015. <a href="https://t.co/bTgUXAOnLW">https://t.co/bTgUXAOnLW</a></p> &mdash; deray mckesson (@deray) <a href="https://twitter.com/deray/status/639071910295412737">September 2, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Inside the court, Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/latest-gray-hearing-deputies-reporters-gather-120902199.html" target="_blank">denied motions</a> to recuse State&rsquo;s Attorney Marilyn Mosby from the case and to dismiss charges because of alleged prosecutorial misconduct on behalf of Mosby. Defense attorneys for the six officers, who&nbsp;face charges ranging from involuntary manslaughter to second-degree assault, <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/crime/defense-marilyn-mosby-should-recuse-herself-from-freddie-gray-case/2015/05/08/d701c51c-f5c8-11e4-bcc4-e8141e5eb0c9_story.html" target="_blank">argued</a> that Mosby should recuse herself, citing her relationship to the Gray family's attorney and her husband's position as a city councilman as reasons for a conflict of interest.</p> <p>This story will be updated as it develops.</p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Race and Ethnicity Wed, 02 Sep 2015 17:51:11 +0000 Miles E. Johnson 283246 at http://www.motherjones.com Ted Cruz Blames President Obama for Inciting Murder of Texas Cop http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/ted-cruz-obama-darren-goforth <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Following the brutal murder of Texas Deputy Sheriff Darren Goforth over the weekend, Sen. Ted Cruz is <a href="http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/ted-cruz-goes-after-obama-gun-crime" target="_blank">blaming</a> the Obama administration, especially the president, for inspiring anti-police sentiment and incidents of gun violence toward law enforcement officials.</p> <p>"Cops across this country are feeling the assault," Cruz told reporters when campaigning in Milford, New Hampshire, on Monday. "They're feeling the assault from the president, from the top on down as we see. Whether it's in Ferguson or Baltimore, the response of senior officials, of the president, of the attorney general, is to vilify law enforcement.</p> <p>"That is fundamentally wrong, and it is endangering the safety and security of us all," he added.</p> <p>The Texas senator and presidential hopeful even accused President Barack Obama of staying "silent" on Goforth's murder, when in fact the president condemned the shooting and violence against police officers as <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2015/08/31/obama-targeting-police-completely-unacceptable/71499082/" target="_blank">"completely unacceptable.</a>" On his way to Alaska on Monday, Obama also phoned Goforth's wife to express his condolences.</p> <p>Cruz is hardly the first to denounce the president for provoking anti-police hostilities. Following the murders of two New York Police Department officers in December, former Mayor <a href="http://video.foxnews.com/v/3955392125001/rudy-giuliani-on-murder-of-two-nypd-officers/?#sp=show-clips" target="_blank">Rudy Giuliani went on Fox News</a> and accused Obama of disseminating "propaganda" that "everybody should hate the police."</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Crime and Justice Guns Wed, 02 Sep 2015 14:59:03 +0000 Inae Oh 283201 at http://www.motherjones.com Kentucky Clerk Continues to Defy Supreme Court by Refusing to Issue Marriage License to Gay Couple http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/kentucky-clerk-gay-marriage-license-supreme-court <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>The Supreme Court on Monday night denied an emergency application from a defiant Kentucky clerk who is refusing to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. Today, Kim Davis, of the Rowan County Clerk's office, is <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/02/us/same-sex-marriage-kentucky-kim-davis.html" target="_blank">once again refusing to comply</a> with a lower court's order by denying marriage licenses to anyone, gay or straight.</p> <p>When asked by a same-sex couple on Tuesday morning under whose authority she was failing to obey the high court, Davis answered, "under God's authority." She then told the crowd to leave and threatened to call the police.</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Davis came out of office briefly to speak to couple (part 1) <a href="http://t.co/lzuHysWi0T">pic.twitter.com/lzuHysWi0T</a></p> &mdash; Hillary Thornton (@HillaryWKYT) <a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryWKYT/status/638687018835423232">September 1, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Davis out of office (part 2) <a href="http://t.co/HIWQpyR6N5">pic.twitter.com/HIWQpyR6N5</a></p> &mdash; Hillary Thornton (@HillaryWKYT) <a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryWKYT/status/638686820826513408">September 1, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>The Supreme Court denied Davis's <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/31/politics/kentucky-gay-marriage-licenses-supreme-court/index.html" target="_blank">application </a>to turn away same-sex couples seeking marriage licenses because it did not align with her religious beliefs. Her appeal marks the first time since June's historic <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/06/supreme-court-gay-marriage" target="_blank">Supreme Court decision</a> that the justices have had to deal with the issue again.</p> <p>If she continues to defy the court, Davis could be found in contempt and face possible jail time and fines. A hearing is set for Thursday.</p></body></html> MoJo Gay Rights Supreme Court Tue, 01 Sep 2015 14:44:19 +0000 Inae Oh 283116 at http://www.motherjones.com Pope Francis Will Allow Priests to Forgive Women Who Have Had Abortions http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/09/pope-francis-abortion-forgiveness%20 <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Tuesday, Pope Francis announced that during the church's upcoming Holy Year of Mercy, which runs from December 8, 2015, to November 20, 2016, he will allow priests the discretion to forgive women who have had abortions. The move effectively lifts the church's policy that can lead to women being excommunicated for procuring an abortion, for the time being at least. In normal circumstances, these women are required to seek forgiveness from a senior priest who specializes in such confessions, which can be a complicated process.</p> <p>In a <a href="http://press.vatican.va/content/salastampa/en/bollettino/pubblico/2015/09/01/0637/01386.html#ing" target="_blank">letter from the Vatican</a>, Francis called on the church to practice mercy toward women who seek such forgiveness:</p> <blockquote> <p>For this reason too, I have decided, notwithstanding anything to the contrary, to concede to all priests for the Jubilee Year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it. May priests fulfil (sic) this great task by expressing words of genuine welcome combined with a reflection that explains the gravity of the sin committed, besides indicating a path of authentic conversion by which to obtain the true and generous forgiveness of the Father who renews all with his presence.</p> </blockquote> <p>While the announcement still condemns abortions as a major transgression&mdash;a Vatican spokesman on Tuesday <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/pope-francis-to-allow-priests-to-forgive-women-who-had-abortions_55e5817fe4b0aec9f35462e9" target="_blank">emphasized</a> the decision is by "no means an attempt to minimize the gravity of the sin"&mdash;the move continues what some are calling Francis' more <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/06/13/world/europe/francis-the-activist-pope.html" target="_blank">progressive papacy</a>, compared with that of his predecessors.</p></body></html> MoJo Religion Reproductive Rights Tue, 01 Sep 2015 13:58:45 +0000 Inae Oh 283111 at http://www.motherjones.com Donald Trump Goes Willie Horton on Jeb Bush http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/donald-trump-attack-ad-jeb-bush-willie-horton <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Donald Trump's latest attack on Jeb Bush may strike a familiar chord for those who remember&nbsp;the 1988 presidential race.</p> <p>On Monday afternoon,&nbsp;Trump released a video on Instagram that assails&nbsp;Bush for a supposedly lenient stance on undocumented immigration. The video cites a 2014 quote from Bush in which he referred to people who illegally cross the border:&nbsp;"Yes, they broke the law, but it's not a felony; it's an act of love." Then the attack ad flashes pictures of three undocumented immigrants, all charged with murder.&nbsp;(Only one of the trio has been convicted.)</p> <p>The ad is reminiscent of the infamous 1988 Willie Horton ad, aired by George H.W. Bush supporters, that accused Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis of being soft on crime by supporting a state program that allowed&nbsp;weekend passes for prisoners. (Horton, who was a convicted murderer serving a life sentence in Massachusetts, raped a woman while out on a furlough.) The ad sparked a controversy, with critics claiming it exploited&mdash;or fueled&mdash;racist sentiments.&nbsp;</p> <p>Here's the new Trump ad:</p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-version="4" style=" background:#FFF; border:0; border-radius:3px; box-shadow:0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width:658px; padding:0; width:99.375%; width:-webkit-calc(100% - 2px); width:calc(100% - 2px);"> <div style="padding:8px;"> <div style=" background:#F8F8F8; line-height:0; margin-top:40px; padding:28.125% 0; text-align:center; width:100%;"> <div style=" background:url(data:image/png;base64,iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAAACwAAAAsCAMAAAApWqozAAAAGFBMVEUiIiI9PT0eHh4gIB4hIBkcHBwcHBwcHBydr+JQAAAACHRSTlMABA4YHyQsM5jtaMwAAADfSURBVDjL7ZVBEgMhCAQBAf//42xcNbpAqakcM0ftUmFAAIBE81IqBJdS3lS6zs3bIpB9WED3YYXFPmHRfT8sgyrCP1x8uEUxLMzNWElFOYCV6mHWWwMzdPEKHlhLw7NWJqkHc4uIZphavDzA2JPzUDsBZziNae2S6owH8xPmX8G7zzgKEOPUoYHvGz1TBCxMkd3kwNVbU0gKHkx+iZILf77IofhrY1nYFnB/lQPb79drWOyJVa/DAvg9B/rLB4cC+Nqgdz/TvBbBnr6GBReqn/nRmDgaQEej7WhonozjF+Y2I/fZou/qAAAAAElFTkSuQmCC); display:block; height:44px; margin:0 auto -44px; position:relative; top:-22px; width:44px;">&nbsp;</div> </div> <p style=" margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;"><a href="https://instagram.com/p/7DdvbEmhWG/" style=" color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;" target="_top">This is no "act of love" as Jeb Bush said...</a></p> <p style=" color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;">A video posted by Donald J. Trump (@realdonaldtrump) on <time datetime="2015-08-31T16:16:53+00:00" style=" font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;">Aug 31, 2015 at 9:16am PDT</time></p> </div> </blockquote> <script async defer src="//platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js"></script><p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Here's the Willie Horton spot:</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="473" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Io9KMSSEZ0Y" width="630"></iframe></p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Immigration Jeb Bush Mon, 31 Aug 2015 19:31:09 +0000 Miles E. Johnson 283051 at http://www.motherjones.com Breaking: Another Massive Explosion Rocks Industrial City in China http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/breaking-another-massive-explosion-reported-china <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Another huge explosion has erupted in China, this time in the eastern city of Dongying, according to the<em> People's Daily</em>, a Chinese state-run newspaper:</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Breaking: A blast seen and heard in a chemical industry zone in Lijin, Dongying City of Shandong around 23:25 Mon. <a href="http://t.co/Yi29nJXEuX">pic.twitter.com/Yi29nJXEuX</a></p> &mdash; People's Daily,China (@PDChina) <a href="https://twitter.com/PDChina/status/638411877270323200">August 31, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>The cause of the blast is not yet known. Earlier in August, the city of Tianjin, one of China's largest industrial shipping centers, was rocked by massive explosions inside warehouses that reportedly stored hazardous chemicals and <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/massive-explosion-hits-tianjin" target="_blank">"explosive materials."</a> The explosions killed at least <a href="https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&amp;rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=web&amp;cd=3&amp;cad=rja&amp;uact=8&amp;ved=0CCMQqQIwAmoVChMIiPm8yoHUxwIVAcyACh0_MAmY&amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2015%2F08%2F31%2Fworld%2Fasia%2Fbehind-tianjin-tragedy-a-company-that-flouted-regulations-and-reaped-profits.html&amp;usg=AFQjCNGbAJc_hXCgjTXRAvRIeZ6VrbAq7g&amp;sig2=TP0LfuxwtgT1InbuSkHhmw" target="_blank">150 people. </a></p> <p><em>This is a breaking news post. We will update as more information becomes available. </em></p></body></html> MoJo Health Care Mon, 31 Aug 2015 19:19:10 +0000 Inae Oh 283071 at http://www.motherjones.com Ohio Republicans Are Freaking Out About the Denali Name Change http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/denali-mount-mckinley-alaska-portman <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Sunday, President Barack Obama announced that the official name for the highest peak in North America, Alaska's Mount McKinley, would formally be changed to its Athabascan name: Denali. This makes a lot of sense. The mountain was known as Denali long before a gold prospector dubbed it McKinley after reading a newspaper headline in 1896, and it has officially been known as "Denali" in Alaska for about a century, according to the state's board for geographic names. The state and its Republican legislature have been asking Washington to call the mountain Denali for decades. And for decades, the major obstacle to getting this done has been Ohio, McKinley's home state.</p> <p>We need not spend much time discussing Ohio in this space, but suffice it to say that Ohioans are a very proud, if sometimes misinformed, people, and the birthplace of mediocre presidents won't just take the marginalization of those mediocre presidents lying down. It will fight! To wit, the state's congressional delegation has decided to show off that old Ohio fighting spirit by condemning the decision in sternly worded press releases and tweets. Here's GOP Sen. Rob Portman:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">This decision by the Administration is yet another example of the President going around Congress (4/5)</p> &mdash; Rob Portman (@senrobportman) <a href="https://twitter.com/senrobportman/status/638159098043871232">August 31, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Pres McKinley was a proud Ohioan, and the mountain was named after him, as a way to remember his rich legacy after his assassination (2/5)</p> &mdash; Rob Portman (@senrobportman) <a href="https://twitter.com/senrobportman/status/638158882796343296">August 31, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>No it wasn't! McKinley was assassinated in 1901. The mountain was named McKinley in 1896, by a random gold prospector who had just returned from the Alaskan Range to find that the governor of Ohio had won the Republican presidential nomination. This is like naming the highest point in the continent after Mitt Romney. Is Portman suggesting that the fix was in as early as 1896? Did <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leon_Czolgosz" target="_blank">Czolgosz</a> really act alone? Was Teddy Roosevelt in on it? My God! Congress did pass a law in 1917 formally recognizing McKinley as the mountain's name, but that was really just paperwork.</p> <p>Let's see what else they've got:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Boehner stmt: naming continent's highest mt 4 McKinley was "testament 2 his great legacy" including Ohio govship, victory in Spanish-Am War</p> &mdash; Julie Davis (@juliehdavis) <a href="https://twitter.com/juliehdavis/status/638333122447310849">August 31, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>The Spanish-American War hadn't happened yet in 1896&mdash;William Randolph Hearst <a href="http://www.pbs.org/crucible/frames/_journalism.html" target="_blank">wouldn't start that</a> for another two years! Okay. Here's GOP Rep. Bob Gibbs, all but engraving his sternly worded response on obsidian:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">My full statement on <a href="https://twitter.com/POTUS">@POTUS</a> ignoring an Act of Congress and changing the name of Mount McKinley. <a href="http://t.co/nsLLOiUBU8">pic.twitter.com/nsLLOiUBU8</a></p> &mdash; Rep. Bob Gibbs (@RepBobGibbs) <a href="https://twitter.com/RepBobGibbs/status/638172773995687936">August 31, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Job-killing name change!</p> <p>I haven't seen this much loathing directed at Denali <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2015/08/i-cant-stop-reading-these-one-star-yelp-reviews-national-parks" target="_blank">since the last time I went on Yelp</a>.</p></body></html> MoJo Obama Top Stories Mon, 31 Aug 2015 15:36:47 +0000 Tim Murphy 283031 at http://www.motherjones.com Judges Give NSA More Time to Suck Up Your Data http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/dc-appeals-court-lifts-injunction-against-nsa-bulk-collection-program <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>A federal appeals court in Washington, DC, on Friday <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/08/28/us-usa-court-surveillance-idUSKCN0QX1QM20150828" target="_blank">tossed out</a> an injunction over the National Security Agency's bulk collection of millions of American's phone records, but left open the question of whether the program itself is legal.</p> <p>From&nbsp;<a href="http://www.politico.com/story/2015/08/court-overturns-injunction-against-nsa-bulk-data-collection-program-213123" target="_blank"><em>Politico</em></a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>The three appeals court judges assigned to the case splintered, with each writing a separate opinion. But they overturned a key ruling from December 2013 that critics of the NSA program had used to advance their claims that the collection of information on billions of calls made and received by Americans was illegal.</p> <p>That ruling, issued by Judge Richard Leon in Washington, sent shockwaves across the legal landscape because it was the first in which a federal court judge sided with critics who questioned the legality of sweeping up data on vast numbers of phone calls--nearly all of them completely unrelated to terrorism.</p> <p>The new decision Friday from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit did not kill the lawsuit brought by conservative gadfly Larry Klayman. The appeals court voted, 2-1, to allow the lawsuit to proceed in the district court, but the judges left doubts about whether the case will ever succeed.</p> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px;">In June, Congress</span>&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/senate-passes-house-bill-overhauling-nsa-surveillance-program-1433277227" target="_blank">phased out</a> the NSA's controversial program with the passing of the USA Freedom Act. The new law&nbsp;forced the NSA to obtain private phone records for counterterrorism&nbsp;investigations on a case-by-case basis through a court order.&nbsp;After the&nbsp;law <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/senate-moves-ahead-with-retooling-of-us-surveillance-powers/2015/06/02/28f5e1ce-092d-11e5-a7ad-b430fc1d3f5c_story.html" target="_blank">mandated</a>&nbsp;a six-month transition program for the new program, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/30/us-usa-security-nsa-idUSKCN0PA2G220150630" target="_blank">ruled</a> that the NSA could continue its existing bulk collection program&nbsp;through November.</p> <p>The American Civil Liberties Union <a href="http://firstlook.org/theintercept/2015/07/14/aclu-slams-secretive-court-renewing-illegal-bulk-surveillance/" target="_blank">has also filed</a> an injunction to&nbsp;block the program, arguing that the surveillance court should not have reinstated the program after a federal appeals court in New York <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/05/nsa-bulk-metadata-collection-federal-judge" target="_blank">found it to be&nbsp;illegal</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Civil Liberties Tech Top Stories Fri, 28 Aug 2015 19:18:37 +0000 Edwin Rios 282901 at http://www.motherjones.com "They Would Have Killed You All" http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/how-do-poor-black-women-view-post-katrina-recovery <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Ten years after Hurricane Katrina displaced 40,000 people in New Orleans, opinions about the recovery can be traced along racial lines. A pair of new studies underscores that&nbsp;African American women, particularly those who lived in public housing, faced some of the biggest hurdles after the storm.</p> <p>Nearly four in five white residents in New Orleans say their state has "mostly recovered," while nearly three in five African American residents say it has not, according to <a href="https://sites01.lsu.edu/wp/pprl/files/2012/07/Views-of-Recovery-August-2015.pdf" target="_blank">survey results</a> released Monday by the Louisiana-based Public Policy Research Lab. More than half of all residents, regardless of race, said the government did not listen to them enough during the recovery, but African American women struggled more than any other group to return to their homes in the months and years after the hurricane, PPRL noted.</p> <p>On Tuesday, a <a href="http://www.iwpr.org/publications/pubs/get-to-the-bricks" target="_blank">study</a> by the Washington-based Institute for Women's Policy Research found that recovery policies in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina largely ignored the needs of African American women who lived in four of the city's largest public housing complexes. These women<strong> </strong>were forced to move into more expensive housing, and some had to relocate to areas where they faced racial intimidation.</p> <p>The study, based on interviews with 184 low-income black women, offers a look at how redevelopment efforts affected some of the city's most vulnerable residents. A majority of the women interviewed said they wanted to move back to their homes but were unable to do so because city and federal officials demolished the buildings in the years after the storm.</p> <p>The demolition plan, announced in 2006 by the Housing Authority of New Orleans and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), aimed to deconcentrate poverty in the city by replacing the public housing complexes with mixed-income housing. However, the new developments included fewer low-income apartments, which meant many people had to pay more for housing.</p> <p>The decision to raze the public housing complexes seemed odd to some former residents because HUD had found them to be structurally sound after the storm, the IWPR reported. Here's what a 70-year-old retired grandmother told the research group:</p> <blockquote> <p>The buildings were good, strong buildings. Now, if they say they couldn't be renovated, well, that's a different story, but they had some buildings in worse shape and they're doing them over&hellip;I'm very disappointed with our elected officials. They turned their backs on us.</p> </blockquote> <p>Many of the women interviewed by the IWPR said that even though public housing hadn't been ideal, they felt safest in their former homes. There, they had known all their neighbors, and the brick apartment buildings had withstood the hurricane's winds and subsequent flooding. There had even been a saying among poor residents in the city that if a storm ever came, you should "get to the bricks."</p> <p>One woman who had lived in the C.J. Peete housing project believed the razing of her building was unjustified.</p> <blockquote> <p>Bad as the waters were, it did not go into our houses. That was one of the projects that I think they just wanted to tear down. They could have left that project there&hellip;They had people coming from other places to come stay in the projects, but they never came down because they are brick.</p> </blockquote> <p>After nearly three decades living in the C.J. Peete complex, another elderly woman with diabetes and arthritis told researchers that she was forced to move temporarily to a community known for Ku Klux Klan activity.</p> <blockquote> <p>In Baker [where the emergency trailer park for displaced people was], [the crosses] was all over. Ah, Baker was the main headquarters of the Ku Klux Klan&hellip;This white man walked up and he said, ah, "If you all would've came here in the '60s&hellip;I'm so glad you all didn't come&hellip;Oh, you all would've been dead&hellip;They would've killed you all." They put us in a pasture where the cows and horses was living. That's where the trailer was.</p> </blockquote> <p>To read more of of these stories, check out the report by the IWPR <a href="http://www.iwpr.org/publications/pubs/get-to-the-bricks" target="_blank">here</a>.</p></body></html> MoJo Race and Ethnicity Top Stories Hurricane Katrina Fri, 28 Aug 2015 10:00:17 +0000 Samantha Michaels 282661 at http://www.motherjones.com Trump: "This Isn't a Gun Problem, This Is a Mental Problem." http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/donald-trump-gun-control-mental-health <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SfKMh0E4sUI" width="630"></iframe></p> <p>A day after two journalists in Virginia were fatally shot on live television, Donald Trump is rejecting calls to strengthen gun control laws. Instead, he told <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/27/politics/donald-trump-virginia-shooting-mental-health-gun-laws/index.html" target="_blank">CNN's Chris Cuomo</a> today that mental health issues are to blame for gun violence in America. This isn't a gun problem, this is a mental problem," the presidential hopeful said.</p> <p>"You're not going to get rid of all guns," Trump added. "I know one thing: If you try to do it, the bad guys would have them. And the good folks would abide by the laws but be hopeless." The real state mogul defended the Second Amendment, which he said he was "very much into."</p> <p>Trump's opposition to stricter gun legislation in favor of focusing on mental health problems is not new. But many experts argue such thinking is <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/06/myth-vs-fact-violence-mental-health-jeffrey-swanson" target="_blank">flawed</a>. "Consider that between 2001 and 2010, there were nearly 120,000 gun-related homicides&hellip;Few were perpetrated by people with mental illness," psychiatry professor Richard A. Friedman wrote in the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/18/health/a-misguided-focus-on-mental-illness-in-gun-control-debate.html?_r=0" target="_blank"><em>New York Times</em></a> after the Newtown shooting in 2012.</p> <p>Trump is just one of the 2016 candidates to weigh in following the murders of Alison Parker and Adam Ward on Wednesday morning. Speaking at a press conference in Iowa, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/politics/first-draft/2015/08/26/verbatim-hillary-clinton-reacts-to-shooting-in-virginia/" target="_blank">Hillary Clinton</a> told reporters that she was "stricken" by the shooting. "We have got to do something about gun violence in America," Clinton said. "And I will take it on."</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Heartbroken and angry. We must act to stop gun violence, and we cannot wait any longer. Praying for the victims' families in Virginia. -H</p> &mdash; Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) <a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton/status/636562456618381312">August 26, 2015</a></blockquote> <p>Speaking to Fox News' Megyn Kelly on Wednesday night, the father of one of the victims vowed to fight for increased gun control measures. "Whatever it takes to get gun legislation, to shame people, to shame legislators into doing something about closing loopholes and background checks and making sure crazy people don't get guns," <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/08/father-of-slain-journalist-vows-to-fight-for-gun-control" target="_blank">Andy Parker said</a>.</p></body></html> MoJo Top Stories Thu, 27 Aug 2015 18:24:26 +0000 Inae Oh 282806 at http://www.motherjones.com This GOP Presidential Candidate Is Trying to Destroy Planned Parenthood. Now Planned Parenthood Is Fighting Back. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/planned-parenthood-defund-abortion-lawsuit-louisiana-bobby-jindal <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Planned Parenthood in Louisiana is asking a federal judge to halt presidential candidate and state&nbsp;Gov. Bobby Jindal's&nbsp;efforts to cut Medicaid funding for the health care organization, arguing that the cut would hurt nearly 6,000 low-income women, men, and teens who access the group's services each year.</p> <p>Referencing the series of attack&nbsp;videos that depict Planned Parenthood officials in California and other states discussing fetal tissue donation, Jindal&nbsp;earlier this month <a href="http://gov.louisiana.gov/index.cfm?md=newsroom&amp;tmp=detail&amp;articleID=5061" target="_blank">directed</a> the state's department of health to terminate Planned Parenthood's contract with Medicaid, saying the organization was not "worthy of receiving public assistance from the state."</p> <p>Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, which <a href="http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-center/LA/" target="_blank">operates</a> clinics in New Orleans and Baton Rouge, does not offer abortion services in Louisiana. It does, however, provide physical exams, breast cancer screenings, and testing for sexually transmitted infections to 10,000 people each year, 60 percent of whom are enrolled in Medicaid.&nbsp;</p> <p>In a <a href="http://ppfa.pr-optout.com/ViewAttachment.aspx?EID=mr9WXYw4u2IxYnni1dBRVvB2IohHjq%2buRwvNLhFQlcE%3d" target="_blank">lawsuit</a>&nbsp;filed Tuesday,&nbsp;lawyers for the health care organization wrote that those patients will be cut off from health care access as early as&nbsp;next week, causing them "significant and irreparable harm," unless the court blocks Jindal's decision. Medicaid payments to Planned Parenthood, which totaled nearly $730,000 last year, are set to end September 2 unless the court steps in.&nbsp;</p> <p>A key issue is whether cutting off Planned Parenthood's Medicaid funding is legal. This month, the federal Centers for Medicare &amp; Medicaid Services (CMS)&nbsp;<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/defund-planned-parenthood_55cbc8ade4b0cacb8d32ef1f" target="_blank">warned</a> Louisiana&nbsp;that terminating Medicaid provider agreements likely violates a federal rule <a href="http://www.wsj.com/articles/hhs-warns-states-of-possible-violation-in-ending-medicaid-funds-for-planned-parenthood-1439392786" target="_blank">requiring</a> Medicaid beneficiaries to be able to obtain services from any qualified provider.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>The point of that provision, according to CMS, is to "allow [Medicaid] recipients the same opportunities to choose among available providers of covered health care and services as are normally offered to the general population."</p> <p>Louisiana isn't the only state to cut funding for Planned Parenthood: Alabama, Arkansas, New Hampshire, and Utah have <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/18/us/states-move-to-cut-funds-for-planned-parenthood.html?_r=0" target="_blank">taken</a> similar steps. And Republicans in Congress tried, but <a href="http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/senate-votes-against-defunding-planned-parenthood-n403441" target="_blank">failed,</a> to push through a bill to slash&nbsp;$500 million in federal funding.&nbsp;</p> <p>Jindal&nbsp;is also one of a handful of Republican&nbsp;governors who have launched <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/state-investigations-planned-parenthood-fetal-tissue-south-carolina" target="_blank">investigations</a> into state&nbsp;Planned Parenthood affiliates in the hopes of finding criminal activity related to the sale of aborted fetal tissue. Those investigations, many of which are taking place in states that don't have fetal tissue donation programs, have so far turned up nothing.&nbsp;<span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">The investigation in Louisiana, however, has put on hold the&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.plannedparenthood.org/planned-parenthood-gulf-coast/who-we-are/ppgc-louisiana/new-orleans" style="line-height: 24px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" target="_blank">construction</a><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;of a third Planned Parenthood clinic, which was&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.nola.com/health/index.ssf/2015/03/concrete_being_poured_at_plann.html" style="line-height: 24px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" target="_blank">approved</a><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&nbsp;by the department of health earlier this year after months of pushback.</span></p> <p>But coming out swinging against the country's <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/08/30-year-history-gop-attacks-defund-planned-parenthood" target="_blank">largest</a> women's health care organization&nbsp;hasn't translated to a more successful presidential campaign for Jindal. He was <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/fox-news-asks-gop-also-rans-what-we-were-all-wondering-why-are-you-running" target="_blank">one of two</a> sitting governors who did not get to participate in the first prime-time Republican debate this year because<strong> </strong>the forum was limited to the top-polling candidates. National <a href="http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/main/bobby-jindal/" target="_blank">polls</a> have consistently put him in the low single digits.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Reproductive Rights Top Stories Wed, 26 Aug 2015 22:23:07 +0000 Nina Liss-Schultz 282726 at http://www.motherjones.com Two Journalists Shot During Live Television Broadcast http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/shooting-kills-two-journalists-during-live-television-broadcast <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><strong>Update, August 26, 2015, 2:25 p.m. EST:</strong> <em>The suspected gunman, Vester Flanagan, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, Sheriff Bill Overton <a href="https://twitter.com/AP/status/636604483687026690" target="_blank">announced</a> in a press conference. </em></p> <p><strong>Update, August 26, 2015, 1:00 p.m. EST:</strong><em> Following a police chase, authorities found Flanagan suffering from a <a href="https://www.facebook.com/VirginiaStatePolice/posts/10153843969460101" target="_blank">gunshot wound.</a> It appears to have been self-inflicted. </em></p> <p>Two members of a Virginia news crew&nbsp;were shot and killed&nbsp;during a live news segment on Wednesday morning. <span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px;">Authorities have identified the suspected gunman&nbsp;as&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/liveblog-live/liveblog/live-updates-tv-shooting-leaves-two-dead/?id=488e3954-06a5-478e-9c32-84c5d027ef68&amp;tid=sm_tw" style="line-height: 24px;" target="_blank">Vester&nbsp;Lee Flanagan</a><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px;">, according to multiple sources. He reportedly went by the name Bryce Williams professionally. Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe <a href="http://liveblogwp.wtop.com/Event/Va_reporter_cameraman_shot_killed_during_live_shot" target="_blank">told</a> a local radio station that the suspect was believed to be a "disgruntled employee" of the news station, WDBJ.</span></p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">BREAKING: Local media reports suspect in Virginia shooting of two journalists has been identified, is being pursued.</p> &mdash; Reuters Top News (@Reuters) <a href="https://twitter.com/Reuters/status/636543952167010304">August 26, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">We love you, Alison and Adam. <a href="http://t.co/hLSzQi06XE">pic.twitter.com/hLSzQi06XE</a></p> &mdash; WDBJ7 (@WDBJ7) <a href="https://twitter.com/WDBJ7/status/636526182972964864">August 26, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>The shooting occurred at Bridgewater Plaza, a shopping center in Moneta, Virginia, where reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were both killed. WDBJ&nbsp;<a href="http://abcnews.go.com/US/tv-reporter-camerman-killed-gunman-opens-fire-virginia/story?id=33327920" target="_blank">confirmed</a> their deaths. The head of the local Chamber of Commerce, Vicki Gardner, who was being interviewed by Parker at the time, was also injured in the attack. She is out of emergency surgery and in <a href="http://www.roanoke.com/news/crime/bedford_county/two-wdbj-journalists-dead-after-shooting-at-smith-mountain-lake/article_67c09161-0109-5228-a554-0d14ffc56d51.html" target="_blank">stable condition. </a></p> <p>The Augusta County Sheriff's Office couldn't immediately be reached for confirmation of the suspect's identity.</p> <p><span style="font-family: Verdana, Arial, sans-serif; line-height: 24px;">Part of the shooting was recorded on&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/tamerragriffin/shooter-kills-tv-new-reporter-and-cameraman-during-a-live-br#.drAQ6BqDw" style="line-height: 24px;" target="_blank">video</a>&nbsp;and posted to social media accounts. It was later taken down.&nbsp;</p> <p>Below is a live newscast of the outlet's coverage of the shooting:</p> <center> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" scrolling="no" src="http://livestream.com/accounts/4044905/events/2110347/player?width=560&amp;height=315&amp;autoPlay=true&amp;mute=false" width="560"></iframe></p> </center> <p><em>This is a breaking news post. We will update as more information becomes available. </em></p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Guns Media Wed, 26 Aug 2015 14:03:38 +0000 Inae Oh 282681 at http://www.motherjones.com Donald Trump Just Had Univision Anchor Jorge Ramos Thrown Out of a Press Conference http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/trump-removes-univision-reporter-ramos-presser <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/25/politics/donald-trump-megyn-kelly-iowa-rally/index.html" target="_blank">At a&nbsp;press event in Iowa Tuesday</a>, Donald Trump had Univision news anchor <a href="http://fusion.net/story/155332/jorge-ramos-trump-youre-fired/" target="_blank">Jorge Ramos</a>&nbsp;removed by security after the <a href="http://fusion.net/story/155332/jorge-ramos-trump-youre-fired/" target="_blank">Trump critic</a> challenged the GOP front-runner&nbsp;for his positions on immigration.</p> <p>"Sit down, go back to Univision," Trump said, before Ramos was removed.</p> <p>Watch:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-video" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">WATCH Univision anchor thrown out of Trump event,<a href="https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump">@realdonaldtrump</a> yells "you weren't called!" <a href="http://t.co/P2mC5gZUop">http://t.co/P2mC5gZUop</a> <a href="http://t.co/T2crjlKjI0">http://t.co/T2crjlKjI0</a></p> &mdash; The Situation Room (@CNNSitRoom) <a href="https://twitter.com/CNNSitRoom/status/636310210257121280">August 25, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Ramos reportedly returned some time later.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Jorge Ramos is back in the room at Trump presser</p> &mdash; Ben Jacobs (@Bencjacobs) <a href="https://twitter.com/Bencjacobs/status/636312096414679040">August 25, 2015</a></blockquote> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck">&nbsp;</blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Also, <a href="https://twitter.com/Walldo/status/636315143412969474" target="_blank">via Brandon Wal</a>l, this is apparently how Trump calls for security:</p> <div class="inline inline-left" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/trumpkiss2.gif"><div class="caption">GIF: Brandon Wall</div> </div> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Race and Ethnicity Donald Trump Tue, 25 Aug 2015 23:11:10 +0000 Becca Andrews 282676 at http://www.motherjones.com Here's What Sexperts Think About "Female Viagra" and Why You Shouldn't Call It That http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/rachel-hills-emily-nagoski-addyi-sex-arousal-desire-viagra <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>When news broke on August 18 that the Food and Drug Administration approved Addyi, the pill that is being <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2015/08/19/fda-approves-addyi-but-it-is-not-the-female-viagra/" target="_blank">incorrectly </a>referred to as the "female Viagra," it might have seemed like an obvious feminist win. Viagra has been around since <a href="http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/fda-approves-viagra" target="_blank">1998</a>, but there hasn't been anything remotely comparable on the market for women. Addyi is supposed to alleviate female hypoactive sexual desire disorder (or lack of sexual desire). But as <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2015/08/fda-just-approved-viagra-women" target="_blank">we've reported</a>, women on Addyi experienced an increase of only <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/05/business/panel-backs-a-drug-to-increase-womens-sex-drive.html?_r=0" target="_blank">one sexual event</a> per month during clinical trials.</p> <p>So what's really going on with the little pink pill? And what's the latest science on low libidos? We asked <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/media/2015/07/the-sex-myth-rachel-hills" target="_blank">Rachel Hills</a>, author of the <em><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/media/2015/07/the-sex-myth-rachel-hills" target="_blank">The Sex Myth</a></em>, and <a href="http://www.thedirtynormal.com/about/about-emily/" target="_blank">Emily Nagoski,</a> sex educator and author of <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Come-You-Are-Surprising-Transform/dp/1476762090/" target="_blank">Come As You Are</a></em>, to weigh in:</p> <p><strong>What is female sexual dysfunction? </strong>Hills points out that when Viagra went on the market, it aimed to treat a very specific disease: erectile dysfunction. Viagra works by <a href="https://www.viagra.com/learning/how-does-viagra-work" target="_blank">increasing blood flow</a> to the penis to get an erection hard enough for sex; it does not cause arousal. Addyi targets the <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2015/08/19/fda-approves-addyi-but-it-is-not-the-female-viagra/" target="_blank">brain</a>, and it does aim to increase arousal by stimulating the brain in a way that's comparable to antidepressants. Hills says this is where it gets tricky, because "female sexual dysfunction" is not well-defined medically, and she thinks the term is being used too broadly. "It's more amorphous than erectile dysfunction because the 'disease' is basically not wanting to have sex enough," she says.</p> <p><strong>Do we need Addyi? </strong>According to Nagoski, there are two types of desire: spontaneous desire, which occurs without any physical prompting from a partner, and responsive desire, which comes from being in a sexual situation (think foreplay or dirty talk). Nagoski says it's pretty normal for women to only experience responsive desire. But, maybe because men's bodies work a little differently, women are led to believe that something is wrong with them if they don't crave sex every day. Nagoski,&nbsp;who has worked as a sex educator for almost a decade, often hears women say, "Once [my partner and I] got started, everything was fine. It's getting me started that's the problem." She thinks a lot of the hype surrounding Addyi is due to a lack of readily available information surrounding female sexuality.</p> <p><strong>Is this simply a pharmaceutical company trying to tap into a profitable market?</strong> A lot of the hype surrounding Addyi stemmed from good marketing, not a scientific breakthrough. "The most generous possible interpretation of the FDA responder analysis is that, of the thousands of women who were on the drug, a few experienced minimal benefit," says Nagoski. Hills is also suspicious of the motives behind treating female sexual desire with a pill: "The entire question of female sexual dysfunction was motivated by the fact that there's potentially a lot of money to be made in that." There is certainly a lot of money at stake&mdash;Sprout Pharmaceuticals, the makers of Addyi, announced that&nbsp;Valeant Pharmaceuticals International <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/21/business/dealbook/valeant-pharmaceuticals-to-buy-sprout-maker-of-addyi-female-viagra-drug.html" target="_blank">acquired</a> the pill for $1 billion.</p> <p><strong>Let's talk about pleasure.</strong> Nagoski says the problem with Addyi is that it's purpose is to create desire, but the point of desire falls flat if women aren't experiencing pleasure. Hills and Nagoski believe the conversation about Addyi is too focused on how much sex women are having, regardless of whether the sex is good or not. For this reason, Hills says she doesn't buy that Addyi is a feminist victory. "It&rsquo;s certainly not that I think women should not have the right to sexual desire; it&rsquo;s just that I think everyone has the right to desire as much sex as they want," Hills says. "I worry about the desire for sex becoming an imperative." Nagoski adds that framing a lack of desire as a medical problem reinforces the idea that there's something wrong, which creates additional pressure that can impede libido. A focus on pleasure rather than desire could break that cycle.</p> <p><strong>So what's the key to female sexual arousal?</strong> Nagoski details an interesting theory about this in <em>Come As You Are. </em>The way she sees it, the brain has what's called a "<a href="http://www.kinseyinstitute.org/research/inhibition_excitation.html" target="_blank">dual-control model</a>," in which there is a sexual "accelerator" and a sexual "brake." For the most part, men have more sensitive accelerators and women have more sensitive brakes&mdash;it's easier for them to lose sexual arousal. The key is figuring out what's hitting the brakes. Nagoski says it could be as simple as being distracted by grit on the sheets, or being worried someone will walk in. Or maybe it's literally cold feet&mdash;a study by Dutch scientists<a href="http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/2015/feb/13/dreading-valentines-heres-a-rigorously-academic-research-backed-guide-to-love" target="_blank"> found </a>that wearing socks increased a woman's chance of having an orgasm. Of course, if the sensitivity is trauma-related, Nagoski says seeing a sex therapist might be the best way to go. But for others, try to "take control of the issues you can take control of," she says.</p></body></html> MoJo Sex and Gender Top Stories Sun, 23 Aug 2015 07:05:13 +0000 Becca Andrews 282446 at http://www.motherjones.com The Head of a Major Law Enforcement Group Described Nonviolent Drug Offenders As "Peddlers of Death" http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/police-association-nonviolent-drug-offenders-peddlers-death <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Last month, President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of 46 nonviolent drug offenders detained in federal prisons. Given that <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-clemency-effort-slow-to-start-will-rely-on-an-army-of-pro-bono-lawyers/2015/02/28/2ba8c6bc-bc42-11e4-8668-4e7ba8439ca6_story.html" target="_blank">35,000 nonviolent inmates</a> had applied for reduced sentences, <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/07/obama-commuted-drug-senteces-marijuana-lifer" target="_blank">some activists<strong> </strong>said</a> the clemency grant did not go far enough. Apparently, not everyone agrees.</p> <p>In an <a href="http://www.policemag.com/channel/patrol/articles/2015/08/releasing-the-lions.aspx" target="_blank">opinion</a> piece Thursday, Jon Adler, the president of the <a href="https://www.fleoa.org/" target="_blank">Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association</a> (FLEOA), blasted Obama's decision by describing these nonviolent offenders<strong> </strong>as "peddlers of death." Arguing that Obama ignored the risks of drug traffickers and instead chose to "perpetuate a narrative that these felons are harmless hippies," Adler went so far as to compare the offenders to lions in an overcrowded zoo:</p> <blockquote> <p>With limited space, rising labor, and lodging costs, which animals would the president let go? Using the president's methodology, the lions would likely be set free. Why? They eat the most food and therefore cost the most to maintain. During the 10 years of their captivity, they haven't eaten anyone or attacked their handlers. They have no known affiliation to any violent lion groups. They are totally safe to release into the public. The president's rationale for release of these federal prisoners does not benefit the American public, nor keep it safe.</p> </blockquote> <p>Adler's FLEOA provides testimony at congressional hearings and represents more than 25,000 federal law enforcement officers from some 65 agencies. But his description of nonviolent drug offenders seems unfair for people like <a href="http://clemencyreport.org/antonio-bascaro-nations-longest-serving-marijuana-prisoner/" target="_blank">Antonio Bascaro</a>, an octogenarian grandfather in a wheelchair who has been incarcerated for 35 years because he worked on a fishing boat used by Cubans to smuggle cannabis to Florida. Or what about <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/life-in-prison-for-pot-as-laws-ease-some-remain-behind-bars/" target="_blank">John Knock</a>, a first-time offender serving life in prison for conspiracy to traffic large quantities of weed that the government never even seized? (Neither man was granted clemency.)</p> <p>In an <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/05/life-sentence-marijuana-pot-prison-commuted" target="_blank">investigation of weed lifers</a>, my colleague Bryan Schatz writes:</p> <blockquote> <p>Every year, more people are arrested for <a href="http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2013/crime-in-the-u.s.-2013/resource-pages/table-guide" target="_blank">pot possession</a> than <a href="http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2013/crime-in-the-u.s.-2013/tables/table-29/table_29_estimated_number_of_arrests_united_states_2013.xls" target="_blank">violent crimes</a>. Around <a href="http://www.msn.com/en-us/health/other/the-threat-of-commercialized-marijuana/vp-BB5jABc" target="_blank">40,000 people</a> are currently serving time for offenses involving a drug that has been decriminalized or legalized in <a href="http://norml.org/states" target="_blank">27 states and Washington, DC</a>. Even as Americans' attitudes toward pot <a href="http://www.people-press.org/2013/04/04/majority-now-supports-legalizing-marijuana/" target="_blank">have mellowed</a>, the law has yet to catch up, leaving pot offenders subject to draconian sentences born out of the war on drugs. As <a href="http://www.hollandlitigation.com/" target="_blank">David Holland</a>, a criminal-defense attorney in New York City who filed <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/documents/2089690-petition-for-clemency" target="_blank">a presidential clemency petition</a> for marijuana lifers in 2012, puts it: "The world has changed, but these poor bastards are still sitting in jail."</p> </blockquote> <p>It's important to note that the war on drugs has <a href="http://blogs.reuters.com/bernddebusmann/2011/07/01/the-u-s-drug-war-and-racial-disparities/" target="_blank">disproportionately affected black and Latino men</a>. And Obama's clemency last month went to a group of nonviolent inmates who had served more than 10 years in prison with good behavior, and who would not have received such severe sentences under today's sentencing rules. "These men and women were not hardened criminals," the president <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/14/us/obama-commutes-sentences-for-46-drug-offenders.html?_r=0" target="_blank">said</a>, adding that 14 of the 46 nonviolent offenders had been given life sentences. "So their punishments didn't fit the crime."</p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Marijuana Sat, 22 Aug 2015 10:00:13 +0000 Samantha Michaels 282501 at http://www.motherjones.com Trump Blasts O'Malley: "Disgusting, Little, Weak, Pathetic Baby" http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/trump-omalley-black-lives-matter <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Back in July, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley <a href="http://www.politico.com/story/2015/08/donald-trump-martin-omalley-2016-election-121592.html#ixzz3jSX8Troa" target="_blank">apologized</a> for saying <a href="http://www.vox.com/2015/7/20/9003233/all-lives-matter-black" target="_blank">"all lives matter"</a> to a group of Black Lives Matter activists who had interrupted one of his speeches.</p> <p>"That was a mistake on my part, and I meant no disrespect," the Democratic presidential hopeful said. "I did not mean to be insensitive in any way or communicate that I did not understand the tremendous passion, commitment, and feeling and depth of feeling that all of us should be attaching to this issue."</p> <p>Great, a well-spoken, sincere apology from a white guy who, if given the benefit of the doubt, probably just didn't know any better. Problem solved, right?</p> <p>Wrong.</p> <p>In an interview on Fox News that is set to air Saturday night, Donald Trump blasted O'Malley's apology.</p> <p>"And then he apologized like a little baby, like a disgusting, little, weak, pathetic baby," <a href="http://www.politico.com/story/2015/08/donald-trump-martin-omalley-2016-election-121592.html#ixzz3jSX8Troa" target="_blank">Trump said</a>. "And that's the problem with our country."</p> <p>Though many will groan at an adult hurling insults at another adult for realizing he made a mistake and attempting to correct himself, O'Malley may be loving the Trump exposure, considering he has been known to participate in some good old-fashioned <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/08/19/politics/martin-omalley-donald-trump-las-vegas/index.html" target="_blank">trolling</a> of the real estate tycoon himself.</p> <p>Mother Jones has reached out to the O'Malley campaign, and we will update if it responds.</p> <p><strong>UPDATE, {8/21/2015 4:59 PM}:</strong> Lis Smith, Mr. O'Malley's deputy campaign manager responded with the following comment:</p> <p>"Governor O'Malley stands with those who have the guts to stand up to Donald Trump's hate speech. It speaks volumes about the Republican Party today that this is their frontrunner. Unlike the rest of the Republican field, we're not interested in engaging in a race to the bottom with Mr. Trump."</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Fri, 21 Aug 2015 15:58:47 +0000 Miles E. Johnson 282476 at http://www.motherjones.com This Chart Will Make You Even More Pissed Off About Your Ballooning Student Debt http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/universities-pay-investment-managers-scholarships-yale-harvard <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>For the tens of thousands of college students who are taking out another year's worth of debt in preparation for the start of classes, here's a rage-inducing data point: Many universities spend way more managing their investment portfolios than they do assisting students with tuition.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/19/opinion/stop-universities-from-hoarding-money.html?_r=0" target="_blank"><em>New York Times</em> op-ed </a>published Wednesday by Victor Fleischer, a law professor at the University of San Diego, lays out this disparity. Fleischer cited Yale University, which paid its fund managers nearly $743 million in 2014 but gave out just $170 million in scholarships. He also noted that many universities, large and small, public and private, show the same imbalance in spending. "We've lost sight of the idea that students, not fund managers, should be the primary beneficiaries of a university's endowment," he writes. "The private-equity folks get cash; students take out loans."</p> <p>Fleischer provided <em>Mother Jones</em> with more of his data, which is gleaned from tax forms, financial statements, and annual reports. Here's how the numbers shake out at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and Princeton. On average, these four wealthy, elite universities spend 70 percent more on managing their investment portfolios than they do on tuition assistance. (Complete scholarship data for 2014 was not available, and some investment management fees are estimated.)</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="400" mozallowfullscreen="mozallowfullscreen" msallowfullscreen="msallowfullscreen" oallowfullscreen="oallowfullscreen" src="//mjdwcharts.s3.amazonaws.com/1ByZ9/1/index.html" webkitallowfullscreen="webkitallowfullscreen" width="100%"></iframe></p> <p>That disparity is even more glaring when you consider the tax benefits fund managers derive from working with universities. Fleischer notes that investors typically pay their fund managers about 20 percent of their investment profits. That money, called carried interest, is taxed at a lower rate for fund managers, who can claim it as capital gains instead of income.</p> <p>Some universities justify the high management fees by arguing that they ensure top financial performance for their endowments. It's true that these portfolios have done quite well: Harvard's endowment is nearly $36 billion, and Yale's is more than $25 billion, a 50 percent increase since 2009. But, writes Fleischer, a little less endowment hoarding and a little more spending, both on financial aid and other educational goals, would still allow universities' money to grow generously while eliminating the hefty tuition increases that force students to take on burdensome debt.</p> <p>Fleischer proposes that when Congress moves to reauthorize the Higher Education Act this term, lawmakers should require universities with assets greater than $100 million to spend 8 percent of their endowment each year. Even doing that, universities would likely continue to get exponentially richer. As he notes, the average endowment has grown 9.2 percent annually for the past 20 years (after accounting for 4 percent annual spending), a more than respectable rate of return.</p> <p>Elite schools do offer<strong> </strong>need-blind admission and some of the best financial aid for low-income students. But for many students, tuition increases still mean more loans: On paper, many middle-class students often don't qualify for large scholarships, but their families also can't afford more than $50,000 in annual tuition. More generous allocation of endowments could help to roll back that trend while also funding more<strong> </strong>teaching and research. As Fleischer writes in the <em>Times</em>, "Only fund managers would be worse off."</p></body></html> MoJo Charts Education Income Inequality Top Stories Wall Street Fri, 21 Aug 2015 10:00:10 +0000 Hannah Levintova 282411 at http://www.motherjones.com 2 Brothers Inspired by Donald Trump Allegedly Attack Homeless Hispanic Man http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/donald-trump-hispanic-man-attack-boston <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Boston police believe two brothers are responsible for a brutal attack<strong> </strong>Wednesday evening that left a homeless Hispanic man with a broken nose and covered in urine. One of the men, 38-year-old <a href="http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/08/19/homeless/iTagewS4bnvBKWxxPvFcAJ/story.html" target="_blank">Scott Leader</a>, told police he was inspired by presidential candidate Donald Trump's message on immigration.&nbsp;</p> <p>"Donald Trump was right, all these illegals need to be deported," Leader allegedly told cops when he was arrested with his brother, 30-year-old Steve Leader.</p> <p>The <em>Boston Globe</em> reported that a witness saw the brothers beating the 58-year-old victim with a pole three or four times as he attempted to defend himself.</p> <p>This isn't the first time the Leader brothers have been charged with a crime. After the attacks on September 11, Scott Leader was convicted with a hate crime after he assaulted a Muslim man and called him a "terrorist."</p> <p>When Trump heard about the assault, he told the <em>Globe,</em> "It would be a shame&hellip;I will say that people who are following me are very passionate. They love this country and they want this country to be great again. They are passionate."</p> <p>Trump, who is currently leading the GOP presidential field, <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/06/donald-trump-running-president-and-its-going-be-so-hilarious" target="_blank">set the tone for his campaign</a> in June when he said that Mexican immigrants were criminals and rapists.&nbsp;</p> <p>Since launching his bid, Trump has continued to issue offensive comments about Latin American immigrants. Earlier this week, he offered a glimpse at his immigration plan, which promotes mass deportations and an <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/08/donald-trump-has-some-thoughts-about-the-constitution" target="_blank">end to birthright citizenship</a>.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Crime and Justice Immigration Donald Trump Thu, 20 Aug 2015 19:18:40 +0000 Inae Oh 282351 at http://www.motherjones.com