FROM Roger Lancaster
Does Public Shaming Guarantee Public Safety? Sexual abuse is an especially heinous crime, and there's unwavering popular support for tough penalties. There's also increased evidence that public registries of convicted sex offenders may be doing more harm than good. Rehabilitation has become almost impossible for some 800,000 people, many of whom — including teen-agers — don't really belong on the lists. Is it time to re-visit laws enacted before the Internet blurred the lines between what's socially acceptable and what's a crime? Nineteen-year-old Zachary Anderson is being released from jail today after serving 90 days for illegal sex with a 14-year-old girl. The girl and her parents agreed in court that she lied about her age on the dating app "Hot or Not." But that won't keep Zachery off the public registry of sex offenders in Elkhart, Indiana. His father lamented, "Obviously our son's life is, at this point, is ruined. He can't do the things that he wanted to do. He can't even live in our own house with his brothers, his siblings. And it doesn't make a whole lot of sense because he is allowed to come visit but he just can't actually reside there. You know, we taught Zach, you know, abstinence, wait for that special person. And unfortunately teenagers don't always do that, but I believe with all my heart that they don't deserve a lifetime punishment for something like this."
GOP 'Nukes' the Senate filibuster on SCOTUS nominees Senate Democrats today blocked Judge Neil Gorsuch's appointment to the US Supreme Court… but just for the moment. The Republican majority has changed the rules to force a likely confirmation as soon as tomorrow.
The US gets deeper into Middle East wars. What's the endgame? President Trump welcomed Egypt's President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi to the White House today… just one of the changes in America's approach to the Middle East since Barack Obama left office. We hear about that and the escalation of warfare as well as civilian casualties.
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?