3M has gotten away with poisoning the water of Minnesota, and the Dept. of Health has taken some protective and/or remedial measures, but it’s not nearly enough. Isn’t it a wake-up call that we need a “Drinking Water Health Advisory” in this Land of 10,000 Lakes? Minnesota’s “Pollution Control Agency” has not been proactive on this, and we’ve known about 3M’s contamination for how long? This is why we need the EPA! The EPA is leading the charge, and Minnesota’s Department of Health (MDH), as above, has “responded” to the EPA Advisories.
Really… It’s a crucial distinction that they’re talking about “2nd Amendment rights” and not “1st Amendment rights” here, that their focus is on guns, and not speech. At what point is inflammatory “speech” of flags and open carry in front of NAACP headquarters criminal incitement or terroristic threats?
Notice the “14 WORDS” sign. Those “14 WORDS” are a fundamental slogan of white supremacists, originally from David Lane, The Order, The Silent Brotherhood, Bruders Schweigen: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for White children.”He also authored the “88 Precepts” while in jail serving his 190 year sentence. Words like this should not be taken lightly. The actions of Lane’s group included the machine-gun mowing down of Alan Berg, Jewish radio talk show host, armored car robberies and counterfeiting, racketeering, and conspiracy. He died in jail.
Incitement is a difficult concept, much is allowed, and in reviewing Constitutional law on incitement, the key is to be vague, to use inference, to speak of possibilities, and that’s OK. Urges to action NOW is another matter. So thus far, these “protesters” (again, what exactly are they “protesting?”) seem to be within bounds, unlike Drumpf (one protester yesterday was wearing a Trump hat), who has gone over the edge with direct, targeted incitement:
There are too many people who think Sheriff Joe Arpaio walks on water. Horrifying. Thankfully, at long last, Arpaio is in trouble, deep, deep trouble, not just legally, but he’s probably going to loose the his bid for re-election, and may be sent to jail. Can’t happen soon enough.
And on a parallel front, the Department of Justice is moving forward to document his many violations of the Constitution and federal law, and to shut him down, hold Maricopa County responsible, and that’s good. About time! Here are their links:
This guy needs to be OUT of office and thrown in jail. The magnitude of his racist and blatantly unconstitutional policies and actions has been exposed, and must stop — despite the court ordered injunction, he continues… Here’s hoping the judge does push for a criminal contempt case against Arpaio. And once he’s gone, the entire Sheriff’s Office needs to be rebuilt. Whew, that’s a big job.
It’s grim. For those questioning all the complaints regarding Baltimore police, just a scan of the table of contents is enlightening:
BPD MAKES UNCONSTITUTIONAL STOPS, SEARCHES, AND ARRESTS
BPD DISCRIMINATES AGAINST AFRICAN AMERICANS IN ITS ENFORCEMENT ACTIVITIES
BPD USES UNREASONABLE FORCE
BPD UNLAWFULLY RESTRICTS PROTECTED SPEECH
BPD’S HANDLING OF SEXUAL ASSAULT INVESTIGATIONS RAISES SERIOUS CONCERNS OF GENDER-BIASED POLICING
And the conclusion:
SYSTEMIC DEFICIENCIES IN BPD’S PRACTICES CONTRIBUTE TO CONSTITUTIONAL VIOLATIONS, ERODE COMMUNITY TRUST, AND INHIBIT EFFECTIVE POLICING
From the report:
The constitutional violations described in our findings result in part from critical deficiencies in BPD’s systems to train, equip, supervise, and hold officers accountable, and to build relationships with the broader Baltimore community. First, BPD fails to adequately supervise its officers. This lack of supervision manifests itself in multiple ways, including a failure to guide officer activity through effective policies and training; a failure to collect and analyze reliable data to supervise officer enforcement activities; and the lack of a meaningful early intervention system (EIS) to identify officers who may benefit from additional training or other guidance to ensure that they do not commit constitutional violations. Second, BPD lacks meaningful accountability systems to deter misconduct. BPD does not consistently classify, investigate, adjudicate, and document complaints of misconduct according to its own policies and accepted law enforcement standards. Indeed, we found that BPD personnel sometimes discourage complaints from being filed and frequently conduct little or no investigation—even of serious misconduct allegations. As a result, a culture resistant to accountability persists throughout much of BPD, and many officers are reluctant to report misconduct for fear that doing so is fruitless and may provoke retaliation. Third, BPD fails to have proper agreements in place to coordinate its activities with other agencies that are operating within its jurisdiction. Fourth, BPD fails to adequately support its officers through effective strategies for recruitment, retention, and staffing patterns, and does not provide them with appropriate technology and equipment. Fifth, BPD does not engage effectively with the community it polices. BPD’s failure to use accepted community policing strategies and transparency mechanisms erodes the community trust that is central to productive law enforcement.
BPD FAILS TO ADEQUATELY SUPERVISE ITS OFFICERS’ ENFORCEMENT ACTIVITIES
BPD FAILS TO ADEQUATELY SUPPORT ITS OFFICERS
BPD FAILS TO HOLD OFFICERS ACCOUNTABLE FOR MISCONDUCT
BPD DOES NOT COORDINATE WITH OTHER AGENCIES APPROPRIATELY
BPD FAILS TO ENGAGE IN EFFECTIVE COMMUNITY POLICING
And the conclusion?
For the foregoing reasons, the Department of Justice concludes that there is reasonable cause to believe that BPD engages in a pattern or practice of conduct that violates the Constitution or federal law. The pattern or practice includes: (1) making unconstitutional stops, searches, and arrests; (2) using enforcement strategies that produce severe and unjustified disparities in the rates of stops, searches and arrests of African Americans; (3) using excessive force; and (4) retaliating against people engaging in constitutionally-protected expression. We also identified concerns regarding BPD’s transport of individuals and investigation of sexual assaults. BPD’s failings result from deficient policies, training, oversight, and accountability, and policing strategies that do not engage effectively with the community the Department serves. We are heartened to find both widespread recognition of these challenges and strong interest in reform. We look forward to working with the Department, City leadership, and Baltimore’s diverse communities to create lasting reforms that rebuild trust in BPD and ensure that it provides effective, constitutional police services to the people of Baltimore.
So what’s going to happen? Oh, Baltimore…
Other Department of Justice investigations of law enforcement HERE