The Republic of T.

Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal.

Digest for April 15th through April 22nd

Here are some of the people writing about some of the stuff I wish I had time to write about, for April 15th through April 22nd:

  • The Conservative Paranoid Mind – The Daily Beast – There’s a common thread linking conservatives’ positions on gun control, immigration, and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev: the constant need to stoke fear.
  • George Takei: Why We Must Remember Rohwer – Last week, just before the attacks in Boston, I took a pilgrimage. I traveled to Arkansas to dedicate the Japanese American Internment Museum in McGehee. The town lies between two places of great sadness: Jerome internment camp to the southwest, and Rohwer camp to the northeast. Over seventy years ago, my family and I were forced from our home in Los Angeles at gunpoint by U.S. soldiers and sent to Rohwer, all because we happened to look like the people who bombed Pearl Harbor. I was just five years old, and would spend much of my childhood behind barbed wire in that camp and, later, another in California called Tule Lake. One hundred twenty thousand other Japanese Americans from the West Coast suffered a similar fate.
  • Read Him His Rights – The capture of bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev presents an opportunity to show that fighting terrorism doesn't require abandoning the Constitution.
  • Vengeance shouldn’t guide prosecution – CNN.com – There have been numerous calls to prosecute Tsarnaev in federal court because federal law offers the possibility of the death penalty, but Massachusetts law does not. This would be a very poor basis upon which to make the choice.

    The decision of where to prosecute should be based on which jurisdiction has a greater interest in the case, not where the potential for vengeance is greater.

  • Republican Doubles Down On Call For Boston Suspect To Be Tortured – A New York Republican is defending his call for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to be tortured during the interrogation process.
  • WATCH: Pat Robertson’s Latest Ridiculous Gay Marriage Comparison – Televangelist Pat Robertson thinks supporters of same-sex marriage are akin to followers of the Illuminati.
  • Popularity Of Expanding Background Checks Confuses Even Seasoned Pundits – Even legendary journalists can fail to recognize the overwhelming popularity of expanding the background check system for firearms purchases. While it is now a well-known fact that the policy enjoys overwhelming support from the American public at large, some pundits remain unaware that it is also very popular in states that typically support conservative politicians.
  • How the Tsarnaevs might affect the gun control debate – What began with two homemade bombs planted at the Boston Marathon ended after an extended shootout, when bombing suspects Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev used handguns and a rifle to fight a running battle with police across several Massachusetts towns, leaving one officer dead and another severely wounded.

    But police in the state tell Reuters and the AP that neither brother had the permits required to carry a firearm in Massachusetts, which has some of the strictest gun laws in the country.

  • The Truth About Extreme Global Inequality | Common Dreams – The crisis of capital, the rise of the Occupy movement and the crash of Southern Europe have brought the problem of income inequality into mainstream consciousness in the West for the first time in many decades. Now everyone is talking about how the richest 1 percent have captured such a disproportionate share of wealth in their respective countries. This point came crashing home once again when an animated video, illustrating wealth disparities in the US, went viral last month. When an infographic catches the attention of tens of millions of internet users, you know it is hitting a nerve.

    But the global scale of inequality remains largely absent from this story. So we at /The Rules decided to put together a video that would give it some attention.

  • On Guns, a Mixed Report From the States – NYTimes.com – The power of the gun lobby’s campaign money and propaganda has been clear in statehouses for decades, and gun rights supporters sense that it is growing as time passes since the Newtown carnage. “The knees have stopped jerking,” a spokesman for the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms told The Wall Street Journal.

    At this point, both sides in the debate openly wonder — despite the Senate’s positive decision to allow a vote on background checks — whether Congress will fully face up to the issue.

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