FROM Brian Hicks
Debate Begins over Removal of the Confederate flag at the SC Capitol The state legislature in Columbia, South Carolina is meeting today, and there are rallies outside the capitol building. On the agenda is Governor Nikki Haley’s proposed measure to remove the Confederate flag from a monument on the capitol grounds. Brian Hicks is metro columnist for the Post and Courier in Charleston.
Law Enforcement on Trial in America In Charleston, South Carolina cellphone video appears to show criminal conduct by police officer Michael Slager. He was fired and charged with murder shortly after the video went viral. It's the most damning in a series of videos that have created a crisis of public confidence in law enforcement. Such recent body-cam and bystander videos appear to confirm the worst accusations against police in some parts of America. They show what looks like racial profiling, abuse of force and tampering with evidence. They suggest that some cops believe they can get away with murder. Everybody agrees police face danger on a daily basis, but there's a growing consensus that steps are needed to counteract a loss of public confidence. Is better training what's needed to overcome deficiencies in cop culture?
Is Venezuela becoming a dictatorship? Venezuela may have the world's largest oil reserves, but it's a nation in trouble… economically and politically. Is a populist promise to rescue democracy turning out to be a prelude to dictatorship?
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?