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PufPuf23

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Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Jul 26, 2007, 04:26 PM
Number of posts: 7,098

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I am being an absolutist today, pardon the blanket statement.

How can we judge who has and hasn't abused the privileges?

Also churches change and personalities change.

Many churches and individual's associated with churches clearly cause harm by poisoning minds, obtaining funds under false pretenses, mixing in politics, etc

Seems to me that the only way to readily and fairly administer is to enact a blanket rule and then define exemptions (food kitchens, etc). This approach would turn status quo inside out and establish a new baseline.

My druthers are that people should be able to have their own spirituality (and have the guns they want too).

Easy for me as I have no specific spirituality (and have no interest in guns save for family heirlooms).

My solution regarding guns would be 100% control of ammunition (every bullet tracked), though obviously some individuals should lose the privilege and some guns -- machine guns, bazookas, tanks, etc -- have no business in private hands. Again turns status quo inside out and easiest to administer.

I do not believe that many individuals and institutions guiding our society want solutions that are fair and easy to administer.

My solution regarding LE abuses would be to de-militarize and de-weaponize police forces.

Geez I just made my first gun post ever at DU (in response to one of the kindest people on the site).

The Bail Trap (NYT Magazine)

The article is a narrative of case studies. One young woman with child in a domestic violence shelter lost her child to foster care because she went out for diapers. She had no criminal record. She left the child under care. She had a file with CPS because CPS helped get her away from an abusive boyfriend and into the shelter.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/16/magazine/the-bail-trap.html?partner=msft_msn&_r=0

On the morning of Nov. 20 last year, Tyrone Tomlin sat in the cage of one of the Brooklyn criminal courthouse’s interview rooms, a bare white cinder-block cell about the size of an office cubicle. Hardly visible through the heavy steel screen in front of him was Alison Stocking, the public defender who had just been assigned to his case. Tomlin, exhausted and frustrated, was trying to explain how he came to be arrested the afternoon before. It wasn’t entirely clear to Tomlin himself. Still in his work clothes, his boots encrusted with concrete dust, he recounted what had happened.

The previous afternoon, he was heading home from a construction job. Tomlin had served two short stints in prison on felony convictions for auto theft and selling drugs in the late ’80s and mid-’90s, but even now, grizzled with white stubble and looking older than his 53 years, he found it hard to land steady work and relied on temporary construction gigs to get by. Around the corner from his home in Crown Heights, the Brooklyn neighborhood where Tomlin has lived his entire life, he ran into some friends near the corner of Schenectady and Lincoln Avenues outside the FM Brothers Discount store, its stock of buckets, mops, backpacks and toilet paper overflowing onto the sidewalk. As he and his friends caught up, two plainclothes officers from the New York Police Department’s Brooklyn North narcotics squad, recognizable by the badges on their belts and their bulletproof vests, paused outside the store. At the time, Tomlin thought nothing of it. ‘‘I’m not doing anything wrong,’’ he remembers thinking. ‘‘We’re just talking.’’

Tomlin broke off to go inside the store and buy a soda. The clerk wrapped it in a paper bag and handed him a straw. Back outside, as the conversation wound down, one of the officers called the men over. He asked one of Tomlin’s friends if he was carrying anything he shouldn’t; he frisked him. Then he turned to Tomlin, who was holding his bagged soda and straw. ‘‘He thought it was a beer,’’ Tomlin guesses. ‘‘He opens the bag up, it was a soda. He says, ‘What you got in the other hand?’ I says, ‘I got a straw that I’m about to use for the soda.’ ’’ The officer asked Tomlin if he had anything on him that he shouldn’t. ‘‘I says, ‘No, you can check me, I don’t have nothing on me.’ He checks me. He’s going all through my socks and everything.’’ The next thing Tomlin knew, he says, he was getting handcuffed. ‘‘I said, ‘Officer, what am I getting locked up for?’ He says, ‘Drug paraphernalia.’ I says, ‘Drug paraphernalia?’ He opens up his hand and shows me the straw.’’

Stocking, an attorney with Brooklyn Defender Services, a public-defense office that represents 45,000 indigent clients a year, had picked up Tomlin’s case file a few minutes before interviewing him. The folder was fat, always a bad sign to a public defender. The documentation submitted by the arresting officer explained that his training and experience told him that plastic straws are ‘‘a commonly used method of packaging heroin residue.’’ The rest of the file contained Tomlin’s criminal history, which included 41 convictions, all of them, save the two decades-old felonies, for low-level nonviolent misdemeanors — crimes of poverty like shoplifting food from the corner store. With a record like that, Stocking told her client, the district attorney’s office would most likely ask the judge to set bail, and there was a good chance that the judge would do it. If Tomlin couldn’t come up with the money, he’d go to jail until his case was resolved......

Read on at: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/16/magazine/the-bail-trap.html?partner=msft_msn&_r=0
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