Free speech on campus

This is a very interesting case on a university sanctioning a student for something that she wrote on Facebook (note, you may need to be on a campus network to access this article).

social value of speech

The Saturday Night Live skit about Cee Lo Greene’s song is on Hulu. I take it as a commentary on the value of speech and two tier theories of speech protection. It is also relevant to FCC v Pacifica which we will read in a week or two.

Rule of law and police power

Several new articles that, read together, link many of the themes of the last few weeks of “Principles” and offer myriad examples of ways in which the breakdown of legal control over police power is something that potentially affects everyone (and, sadly, their dogs).

Radley Balko on SWAT raids.

Dress cops up as soldiers, give them military equipment, train them in military tactics, tell them they’re fighting a “war,” and the consequences are predictable. These policies have taken a toll. Among the victims of increasingly aggressive and militaristic police tactics: Cheye Calvo, the mayor of Berwyn Heights, Md., whose dogs were killed when Prince George’s County police mistakenly raided his home; 92-year-old Katherine Johnston, who was gunned down by narcotics cops in Atlanta in 2006; 11-year-old Alberto Sepulveda, who was killed by Modesto, Calif., police during a drug raid in September 2000; 80-year-old Isaac Singletary, who was shot by undercover narcotics police in 2007 who were attempting to sell drugs from his yard; Jonathan Ayers, a Georgia pastor shot as he tried to flee a gang of narcotics cops who jumped him at a gas station in 2009; Clayton Helriggle, a 23-year-old college student killed during a marijuana raid in Ohio in 2002; and Alberta Spruill, who died of a heart attack after police deployed a flash grenade during a mistaken raid on her Harlem apartment in 2003. Most recently, voting rights activist Barbara Arnwine was raided by a SWAT team in Prince George’s County, Md., on Nov. 21. The police appear to have raided the wrong house.

Eli Lake on the marketing of military technology to local police departments.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel report on traffic stops in Milwaukee.

A black Milwaukee driver is seven times as likely to be stopped by city police as a white resident driver, a Journal Sentinel analysis of nearly 46,000 traffic stops has found.

Similarly, Milwaukee police pulled over Hispanic city motorists nearly five times as often as white drivers, according to the review, which took into account the number of licensed drivers by race.

Police also searched black drivers at twice the rate of whites, but those searches didn’t lead to higher rates of seized weapons, drugs or stolen property.

You have probably seen this video from UC Davis. This is what we mean when we ask about the relationship between law and order, look at limits on the utilization of violence by police, and identify collaborators and victims.

Or Berkeley last week, including an understated chant, “stop beating students.”

Here is a large collection of similar video from various cities and campuses over the last week or so.

Who are the elites in this example?

Maybe these folks (The American Bankers Association). Or maybe the Chancellor of UC Davis who ordered campus cleared of student protestors, or the Chancellor of UC Berkeley.

And it is worth considering whether collaborators can be caught up in eventsĀ  and turned into victims by a Chancellor and a police chief who will try to save their own jobs by throwing underlings under the bus. These events raise many questions about rule of law and the boundaries of legitimate exercise of force. As of today (Monday) two of the UC Davis officers are on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation, I suspect others will follow, perhaps even Chancellor Katehi.

LA Times

And don’t forget this old classic


Photo essay on internment camps

The Atlantic presented a large collection of pictures from and about the Japanese internment camps at issue in Korematsu.

Trial in the Cole bombing

This piece in the Times gives a good run down on the procedures that are being used to try Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri for the bomb attack on the USS Cole in 2000.