FROM Andre Birotte, Jr.
FBI Arrests 17, Indicts 18 from LA County Sheriff's Department Illegal behavior has become institutionalized in the LA County Sheriff's Department, where some deputies "consider themselves to be above the law." That's according to US Attorney André Birotte, Jr. Today, he unsealed indictments alleging unjustified beatings of both jail inmates and visitors and conspiracies to cover up those actions. Eighteen deputies have been indicted and 16 are under arrest . Late this afternoon, Sheriff Lee Baca held a news conference to respond to the charges. Baca denied that abuse has become "institutionalized" but said he sadly accepted the US Attorney's investigation "whatever the findings are." (Both Sheriff Baca and former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka declined our invitation to participate in this discussion.)
The Crackdown on Medical Marijuana: Prohibition Revisited? Sixteen states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical marijuana, but it's still an illegal, "Schedule 1" drug under federal law. Now the Obama Administration is cracking down , insisting that medical marijuana is a front for recreational use, and generating huge, illicit profits. The poster child is California, which started the movement in 1996 and where medical marijuana reportedly is a multi-billion-dollar business. Is the federal government blind to “compassionate use" by needy patients? Is medical marijuana a scam? What are the parallels to the era of Prohibition?
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?