Category: Society

The Depp Trial and the Demise of the ACLU: How a Celebrity Trial Exposed the Collapse of a Once Celebrated Group

In yesterday’s massive defamation award to actor Johnny Depp, his ex-wife Amber Heard was left holding a bill for $15,000,000. Even after a reduction for her own award and a statutory reduction of the punitive damage portion, Heard is still looking at $8,350,000 in damages. Many view that amount (which is $1.35 million more than her divorce settlement) to be justified in light of the damage caused to Depp’s reputation and career. However, the stain of  this verdict should be shared with others, even if they avoided the sting of actual damages. That includes many in the media (including the Washington Post staff) who rushed to paint Heard as a victim and Depp as an abuser. Yet, the greatest condemnation should be reserved for the organization that not only pushed that narrative but actually helped draft the defamatory column: the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Continue reading “The Depp Trial and the Demise of the ACLU: How a Celebrity Trial Exposed the Collapse of a Once Celebrated Group”

Second Amendment Showdown: Beto O’Rourke Resumes Call for Gun Confiscation

Texas gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke has been ping-ponging on gun confiscation ever since his presidential candidacy in 2019 when he famously declared “Hell yes, we are going to take your AR-15.” When he decided to run for Texas governor, he then dialed down that pledge. With the Uvalde massacre (and critics allege his poor polling numbers), O’Rourke seems to have moved back to the position on confiscation. He declared this week that, not only should they be banned, but AR-15 owners should not “be able to keep them.” Once again, however, O’Rourke omits any explanation of how constitutionally or practically he intends to carry out this confiscation plan.

Continue reading “Second Amendment Showdown: Beto O’Rourke Resumes Call for Gun Confiscation”

Abortion Absolutism: How Some Leaders Are Adopting Extreme Interpretations of the Right to Abortion

Below is my column in USA Today on the strikingly absolutist language being used by Democratic leaders in defining the right to abortion after the Supreme Court’s leaked draft opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. Yet, when pressed, these same politicians have been declining to address the implications of leaving the decision entirely to the woman at all stages of a pregnancy. Addressing the scope of this right is key to defining and supporting this right in constitutional law. Many Americans are open to protecting the right to choose, particularly in the first trimester. However, many politicians are pushing an unlimited view of the right that raises both constitutional and political questions — an approach that far exceeds what the current Roe case law supports. Conversely, Republicans are dealing with their own extreme responses to the pending decision in both the Senate and the states.

Here is the column:

Continue reading “Abortion Absolutism: How Some Leaders Are Adopting Extreme Interpretations of the Right to Abortion”

“Then Hate Me When Thou Wilt”: Salford Removes Sonnets as “Products of White Western Culture”

New Financial Controversies Rock BLM as Marc Elias Reportedly Ends “Key Role” With the Group

New financial controversies have arisen about the use of donations by Black Lives Matter (BLM), including additional allegations that co-founder Patrisse Cullors used BLM funds and resources to benefit herself and friends. I previously wrote a column asking why Democratic prosecutors like New York Attorney General Letitia James shown comparably little interest in these allegations even as James sought to disband the National Rifle Association (NRA) over similar allegations. In the meantime, the Washington Examiner is reporting that former Clinton campaign lawyer Marc Elias has left a “key role” after his firm, the Elias Law Group, had “taken control of its books and finances.”

Continue reading “New Financial Controversies Rock BLM as Marc Elias Reportedly Ends “Key Role” With the Group”

Stopping the “Ding, Dong Party”: Will The Biden Administration Appeal the Mask Ruling?

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A curious thing happened this week after a federal judge struck down the Biden Administration’s mask mandate for airplanes and mass transportation: nothing. In such high-profile litigation, the Justice Department will often announce an emergency appeal to stay the order of the lower court pending an appellate review. Instead, the Administration said it was studying the opinion but that the mandate was no longer in effect. Continue reading “Stopping the “Ding, Dong Party”: Will The Biden Administration Appeal the Mask Ruling?”

Showdown at TJ: How a Virginia High School Became The Latest Battleground Over Racial Discrimination

Below is my column in the Hill on the litigation over the new admissions policy at the elite Thomas Jefferson High School in Fairfax, Virginia. The school board ended the use of an admissions test in favor of a “holistic approach” to achieve greater diversity at the school. Notably, this week, the board defended its policy before the Supreme Court by insisting that it was not “race balancing” and that the new policy is entirely “race neutral.” However, the board replaced a race-blind, merit-based system for the express purpose of achieving greater diversity. Indeed, one board member declared “in looking at what has happened to George Floyd . . . we must recognize the unacceptable numbers of such things as the unacceptable numbers of African Americans that have been accepted to TJ.”

The Virginia Attorney General (and various other states) have filed to challenge those assertions in a potentially important case that would allow the Court to consider allegedly discriminatory admissions practices and polices not just on the college but the high school levels.

Here is the column:

Continue reading “Showdown at TJ: How a Virginia High School Became The Latest Battleground Over Racial Discrimination”

The Reeducation of America: Obama Calls on Our “Better Angels” to Change Voter Viewpoints

Below is my column in The Hill on the recent “disinformation conference” held by leading democrats and media figures. It was a confab of the liberal politicians and journalists over how to deal with problems like Republicans, Fox News, roughly half of the voters and most television viewers. The solution for some seemed to be reeducation led by the media through even greater advocacy journalism and censorship.

This weekend MSNBC analyst John Heilemann and Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-Pa) added their own suggestion for such reeducation. Dean agreed with Heilemann that Democrats “have to scare the crap out of [the Democratic base] and get them to come out. They can’t motivate them on the basis of hope or their pocketbooks or any of these accomplishments. They have to scare the crap out of them.”

Here is the column:

Continue reading “The Reeducation of America: Obama Calls on Our “Better Angels” to Change Voter Viewpoints”

Appellate Court Upholds $25 Million Award Against Oberlin in Mob Action Against Family Grocery

Starting in 2017, I have written half a dozen columns on the lawsuit against Oberlin College over its participation in a campaign against a small family-owned business accused of racism. In this case, the college not only joined the mob but helped lead the mob against Gibson’s Bakery. Even after a massive award by the jury, Oberlin President Carmen Twillie Ambar continued to refuse to apologize for the shameful and costly conduct of her administration. Now, an appellate court has upheld a $25 million judgment against the small college and Oberlin earned every penny of that penalty. Ambar still remains the president of the college.

Continue reading “Appellate Court Upholds $25 Million Award Against Oberlin in Mob Action Against Family Grocery”

Bridgewater State University Sued Over Asking Applicant to Address Her “White Privilege”

Bridgewater State University is the subject of a novel lawsuit after it asked Donna Johnston, a white applicant for one of three open positions in the School of Social Work, to, according to the Boston Globe, “defend her whiteness” in a job interview. The university said that she “missed the target” in answering how she could overcome her “white privilege.”

Continue reading “Bridgewater State University Sued Over Asking Applicant to Address Her “White Privilege””

A “Tragedy of Capitalism”? BLM Faces Growing Questions Over Millions in Donations

Below is my column in USA Today on the investigations into the finances and tax status of Black Lives Matters. As these inquiries expand, co-founder Patrisse Cullors is scheduled to speak in favor of defunding school police in Los Angeles. Many, however, are still seeking answers from Cullors’ time at BLM and what happened to millions in donations given by corporations and citizens. Cullors previously called capitalism a tragedy worse than Covid, but this is one tragedy that could have been avoided.

Here is the column:

Continue reading “A “Tragedy of Capitalism”? BLM Faces Growing Questions Over Millions in Donations”

GoFundMe and the Nag’s Head Light: How Crowdfunding Has Become The Latest Battleground Over Free Speech

GoFundMe’s suspension of millions to support protesting truckers in Canada shocked many, particularly when the company initially announced its intention to distribute the money to other charities.  It was less of a surprise for those of us who have criticized the company for years over its use of the platform to target and block funds for conservative and libertarian causes. Indeed, the company has revised an old practice known as the “Nag’s Head light” in luring the unsuspecting into what has become a liberal lockbox on funds. Continue reading “GoFundMe and the Nag’s Head Light: How Crowdfunding Has Become The Latest Battleground Over Free Speech”

Study: Lockdowns Did Little to Combat Covid Mortality

A new study from Johns Hopkins University found that the lockdowns in 2020 did little to combat Covid-19 mortality.  Given the huge economic and personal costs of these lockdowns, the study obviously raises questions about the basis for these extreme measures. However, as will come as no surprise to anyone on this blog, I view the study as much a statement against the censorship of commentators and researchers who were banned or attacked for questioning the lockdowns. Once again, it would have been better for public health to have this debate than to shut down any opposing views in the name of science.

Continue reading “Study: Lockdowns Did Little to Combat Covid Mortality”

Res ipsa loquitur – The thing itself speaks