Standing Athwart Justice Reform

It wasn’t all that long ago that a broad consensus in favor of criminal justice reform characterized the political landscape. Quite unlike the 2014 grand jury verdict in Ferguson, Missouri and the ensuing unrest, both the right and the left united in discomfort if not outrage over the decision by a New York City grand jury not to indict the officer responsible for the death of Eric Garner. The arrest of the 43-year-old African-American for selling illicit loose cigarettes was captured on camera. It showed one of the arresting officers using physical force to subdue the heavy-set Garner, force that resulted in the alleged contraband purveyor’s death. In the months that followed, the Black Lives Matter movement was formed in response to a purported plague of urban police violence against black residents. Substantial unrest in America’s cities has compelled its predominantly progressive governing class to limit law enforcement’s rules of engagement. This is a luxury the nation’s liberal mayors enjoy due to the marked reduction in violent crime that has been achieved over the last twenty years, much of it a result of 1990s-era policies of “mass incarceration” that today so irritates the left. Still, even as American cities burned and progressives allowed the police to become targets (sometimes literally) of an enraged urban population, the integrity of the pro-justice reform coalition was preserved.

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Standing Athwart Justice Reform

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Can Trump Have a Bad Week Anymore?

They're with him.

Donald Trump traveled to Florida on Friday at the end of a nightmarish week for the nation. The shooting deaths of 17 people, many of them teenagers, has sent the nation reeling into an increasingly routinized cycle of grievance and recrimination. The familiar debate over what federal response, if any, could have prevented this atrocity or interdict future episodes of mass violence has, however, largely bypassed the president. Trump tweeted condolences, and he briefly addressed the nation, but his presence in the post-Parkland shooting national debate was almost apparitional. The response to this event has largely focused on the Republican majority in Congress. That is instructive; after a year of near ubiquity, Donald Trump might be relinquishing the hold he has had on the national imagination.

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So Now We’re Killing Russians

The stuff of nightmares.

Americans no longer have the luxury of throwing up their hands in frustration over the confused situation on the ground in Syria. As the Wall Street Journal’s Yaroslav Trofimov demonstrated, unpacking the bewildering complexity of the conditions that prevail on the ground now that the ISIS threat has receded leaves observers with the terrifying realization that great power conflict is not so difficult to imagine.

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Responding to Parkland: Amend the Second Amendment?

Podcast: How to respond to mass murder.

For those who want radical changes in the way the United States handles guns and shooters, what else can be done but amending the Constitution to supplant the Second Amendment? That’s the question I ask Noah Rothman and Abe Greenwald on this edition of the COMMENTARY Magazine podcast, which also addresses rising Republican fortunes in national polling. Give a listen.

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The Courage to Confront Campus Radicalism

Fear for the future.

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Now, More than Ever, Holocaust Memory Matters

Memory and Judaism are inseparable.

Yes. That’s the answer to a question posed by the headline of Shmuel Rosner’s latest piece in the New York Times. Yes: Israeli students need to visit Auschwitz. All Jewish students should. Plenty of non-Jews, too.

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