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Police

Built Against Substantive Change

Over time, no matter how small the city, national conditions and trends make their way to the edge of town. Some towns will address these conditions, but others will be resistant to substantive change. For those towns in the latter category, business as usual and rhetorical feints suffice in response to powerful forces to which…

Why Now?

Social historians, looking at the many protests against police violence (protests taking place across America and in other countries) will be able (if imprecisely) to assess the motivations of these recent events. Of two things one can be confident, without being a historian: these protests are in response to specific acts of law-enforcement violence, with…

Cameras, Not Committees

Recent protests across America against excessive and biased use of police force began after ordinary people in those communities recorded official (to the point of murderous) actions, and then shared their recordings with others. It was not government – local, state, or federal – that promptly shared these recordings of excessive force; it was ordinary…

Detailed Video Timeline of the Crackdown on Protesters Before Trump’s Photo Op

The Washington Post analyzed hours of video footage and obtained audio of police communications and other records to assemble the most complete account to date of the June 1 crackdown on protesters in Washington D.C.. Late in the day on June 1, demonstrators gathered near the White House, on the edge of Lafayette Square, to…

Frontline: Race, Police, and the Pandemic

As streets across America erupt into clashes over racism during the coronavirus pandemic, Jelani Cobb of The New Yorker examines a connection between George Floyd’s death and the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 deaths among African Americans: “the thing that ties them together is empirical evidence of a phenomenon that had been dismissed otherwise.” Cobb describes how the relationship…

The Horde

Embed from Getty Images Over these many years, legitimate critics of law enforcement have been wrongly accused of radicalism. Defenders of the most mediocre – let alone wrongful – practices have insisted hysterically that their critics are extremists, fanatics, blacks, browns, ‘soft’ whites, liberals, members of the ACLU, libertarians, Rastafarians, whatever. In a place like…

UW-Whitewater’s Administration Covers Crap with Catsup

For months, UW-Whitewater has publicized on its website a sham study from a burglar-alarm company as confirmation that Whitewater has the safest campus in Wisconsin. The study is a shabby fraud, with a methodology so far below proper academic standards that it taints the serious work of faculty and students at the school, in the UW…

‘Do Deportations Lower Crime? Not According to the Data’

Anna Flagg writes Do Deportations Lower Crime? Not According to the Data: In one of Donald J. Trump’s earliest moves as president, days after his inauguration, he revived the deportation program known as Secure Communities. Proponents argue that it helps prevent crime and also increases the police’s ability to solve crime through collaboration with federal…

Accreditation in Context

There is a liturgical tradition in which parishioners reflect on what they have done and what they have left undone.  A secular equivalent for Whitewater would ask a policymaker to consider not merely what has been done so many times before, but what might – and should have been – done, years ago and now.…

The Broad Outlines of 2019

For many years, I would begin the year with predictions for the twelve months ahead.  Events since 2016 have made predictions harder,  but one can still discern some short-term developments for the city.  These prospects, of course, form an online of topics to ponder, and about which to write (often requiring that one return to the…

‘Family of Milwaukee man killed by Walworth deputy in botched drug sting files federal lawsuit’

Bruce Vielmetti reports Family of Milwaukee man killed by Walworth deputy in botched drug sting files federal lawsuit: The family of a 21-year-old Milwaukee man killed by a Walworth County sheriff’s deputy during a botched drug sting has sued the county, two municipal governments and several officers, who the family suspects destroyed dashcam video of…