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Member since: Tue Apr 5, 2005, 09:55 AM
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Journal Archives

N. Carolina residents, civil liberties groups challenge new state law

Two transgender people and a lesbian law professor at North Carolina Central University filed a lawsuit in federal court early Monday challenging North Carolina's new law that bans local governments from passing local anti-discrimination ordinances and dictates that transgender residents use the public restrooms of their biological sex.

Representatives from the ACLU of North Carolina, Lambda Legal, Equality NC and the plaintiffs announced the legal challenge on Monday.

The organizations say HB2 permits discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people across the state.

"We're challenging this extreme and discriminatory measure in order to ensure that everyone who lives in and visits North Carolina is protected under the law," said Chris Brook, Legal Director of the ACLU of North Carolina. "This cruel, insulting, and unconstitutional law is an attack on fairness in employment, education, and local governance that encourages discrimination against thousands of LGBT people who call North Carolina home, and particularly targets transgender men and women. HB 2 aims to override local school board policies, local public accommodations laws, and more."

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/transgender-nc-residents-civil-liberties-groups-challenge-state-law/

GOP senators start to budge on Obama’s Supreme Court nominee

It's not clear if Republicans are more worried about Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump naming the next Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Republican Sen. Susan Collins responded simply when asked about Mitch McConnel's stance on President Obama's Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland.

"I believe that we should follow the regular order in considering this nominee," she said.

But the Maine senator's point marks what could be a shift away from McConnel's - and Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley's - hardline opposition to holding hearings for Garland.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/gop-senators-start-budge-obamas-supreme-court-nominee/

The last time an outsider like Donald Trump crashed the GOP? Wendell Willkie in 1940

Donald Trump’s challenge to the GOP establishment now seems on course to succeed.

As Republicans (and many others) consider what turning the party’s presidential nomination over to a real outsider will likely mean, it’s worth looking back at the last time that happened.

Some will say that it was in 1952, when General Dwight D. Eisenhower defeated Ohio Senator Robert Taft for the nomination at a tense GOP convention.


I would argue that to find the last time a genuinely anti-establishment outsider won the GOP nomination one needs to look back even further, to 1940, when Wendell Willkie surprised politicians and pundits alike by doing just that.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/ike-trump-crashed-gop-wendell-willkie/

How the UK rewrote its gun laws – and the challenge it faces now

Thomas Hamilton walked into Dunblane Primary School, near Stirling, Scotland on March 13 1996, armed with four legally-owned handguns and over 700 rounds of ammunition. In three to four terrible minutes, he fired 105 shots killing 16 children and their teacher, and wounding 15 more children. His last shot killed himself.

In the 20 years since Dunblane, a great deal has been learned about preventing gun violence. Only the United States, where mass shootings now number in the hundreds, seems reluctant to embrace those lessons, prompting president Barack Obama to wonder why the US could not do more on gun control.

After the Dunblane massacre, handgun control became highly political. Handgun ownership was increasing in the 1990s and sports shooting, the only legitimate reason for owning a handgun, was a fast growing sport. Yet even members of the elite country-sports lobby were troubled by newcomers, keen on “combat style” shooting, entering the sport.

These tensions opened up after Dunblane. The government commissioned Lord Cullen run an inquiry into the incident. He recommended cautious compromises (storing firearms in secure armories or police stations). These were initially rejected as “unworkable” by shooters, but they were ultimately overwhelmed by the strength of public feeling.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/how-the-uk-rewrote-its-gun-laws-and-the-challenge-it-faces-now/

Moving to Canada is an American tradition

If Google searches and late-night talk show hosts are to be believed, the Peace Bridge may soon be overrun with Americans fleeing Donald Trump’s relentless march towards the presidency.

Google reported that the search term “how can I move to Canada” surged 350 per cent within a matter of hours on Super Tuesday. While Cape Bretoners are encouraging those hapless refugees of Trumpmania to emigrate to their windy shores.

These Yanks aren’t traitors against their homeland — they’re simply exercising their God-given right as Americans to head north when things get rough at home.

Here’s a look at the centuries-long tradition of Americans moving to Canada.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/moving-canada-american-tradition-2/

Paralipsis: How Donald Trump gets away with saying what he says

In an interview last month, George Stephanopoulos asked Donald Trump about his retweet of a follower who insisted that both Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz were ineligible for the presidency.

Trump dismissed Stephanopoulos’ question with “it was a retweet” – as if to say that retweeting someone else’s claim meant that he wasn’t responsible for the content.

When pressed, Trump continued:

I mean, let people make their own determination. I’ve never looked at it, George. I honestly have never looked at it. As somebody said, he’s not [eligible]. And I retweeted it. I have 14 million people between Twitter and Facebook and Instagram, and I retweet things and we start dialogue and it’s very interesting.

It’s a response that can be reduced to I’m not saying it, I’m just saying it.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/how-trump-gets-away-with-saying-the-things-he-says/

Think the US election season is crazy? Check out what’s happening in Peru

Peru’s presidential elections are at risk of descending into farce after authorities here yanked two of the leading five candidates from the race.

The Special Electoral Tribunal (JEE by its Spanish initials) ruled that second-placed Julio Guzman hadn't legally registered his candidacy last year, because his nomination failed to comply with the minutiae of complex red tape.

In a separate ruling, it upheld an accusation that fourth-placed Cesar Acuna had broken a new electoral law by handing out money to voters.

The pair had until Monday to appeal the decision, which both of them were doing. Another panel, the National Electoral Tribunal (JNE), now has until Thursday to make a final decision. Experts believe the JNE will likely uphold the lower court’s decision.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/think-the-us-election-season-is-crazy-check-out-peru/

A business case for a wealth tax

The most interesting examination of economics over the last three decades has been Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century. But hardly anyone has taken Piketty’s policy proposals seriously, mainly because Piketty himself framed them as overtly redistributional and described them as utopian.

In America today, arguing in favor of redistributional taxes on wealth may be factually, logically, and even morally supportable — but such arguments are counter-productive. Confiscatory tax policies pose a lethal threat to the rich and powerful, demanding their aggressive resistance.

Redistributional policies also hold little appeal to the American voting public. Who among us really wants to go to war against a class we all aspire to join? Even progressives, who often embrace and utilize redistributional rhetoric as part of the inequality debate, have largely dismissed Piketty’s proposed wealth tax.

But Piketty nearly got it right. A properly structured annual wealth tax could equalize effective tax rates between labor and capital, while simultaneously stimulating more productive capital allocations — and, in the process, job creation.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/a-business-case-for-a-wealth-tax/

A voting rights victory in Maryland (column by Marc Morial)

Thousands of Marylanders will regain the right to cast their ballots this election year, thanks to the state’s lawmakers.

The Maryland House and Senate recently voted to override a veto by Governor Larry Hogan to ensure that ex-offenders will automatically get their right to vote back once they’ve been released from prison.

Previously, Maryland required all individuals with past felony convictions to complete all terms of their probation and parole before their access to the polls could be restored through a lengthy and confusing process. That policy — which disproportionately impacted communities of color — was unduly punitive.

It delayed the restoration of voting rights for men and women who’d already paid their debt to society by completing their prison sentences. This kind of voter disenfranchisement must not be tolerated in a nation that professes to be governed by democratic tenets.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/a-voting-rights-victory-in-maryland/

Super Tuesday sets the stage for a Clinton versus Trump showdown

An epic showdown is shaping up between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.

In most of the Super Tuesday presidential primaries and caucuses, Trump and Clinton won decisive victories, building critical momentum for their campaigns.

There were a few exceptions. In the Republican contests, Ted Cruz won Alaska, Oklahoma and his home state of Texas. Marco Rubio won Minnesota in his first victory of the campaign and John Kasich finished a close second to Trump in Vermont. In the Democratic race, Bernie Sanders carried Oklahoma, Colorado, Minnesota and his home state of Vermont.

But overall the map was dominated by Clinton and Trump as each carried seven states.

MORE HERE: http://yonside.com/super-tuesday-sets-stage-for-a-trump-versus-clinton-showdown/

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