Don’t Do It, Tennessee: Voter Registration Proposal A Step Back For Civil Rights.

April 18, 2019

National voter rights groups, ranging from the ACLU to the National Disability Rights Network to the Fair Elections Center, sent Tennessee lawmakers a letter urging them not to pass the bill. “Voting registration drives are absolutely critical to ensuring everyone gets an equal voice in a democracy,” said Michelle Kanter Cohen, counsel of the Fair Elections Center.

Via: The Tennessean

A Cathedral For A Fragile Age

April 17, 2019

The loss of human life is terrible to behold, but the destruction of beauty may be no less so. In a time of anxiety, of ugliness and hatred and lies, the blaze felt ominous. “Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” John Keats wrote, and that is “all ye need to know.”

Via: New York Times

What Would A Universal Basic Income Mean For America? A California City Thinks It Has The Answer

April 15, 2019

For the next year and a half, 130 residents of Stockton, California will get $500 every month, with no strings attached, in a social experiment that is as much public relations as rigorous research. Though controversial, the support for basic income spans the political spectrum. On the right, it’s a way to streamline the welfare state and on the left, it’s a way to address economic inequity.

Via: Los Angeles Times

Tennessee Wants To Make It Harder To Hold Voter Registration Drives

April 14, 2019

Tennessee has a registration rate of 78.52%. While that would be a passing grade at school, it puts Tennessee at 45th among the 50 states for its voter registration rate. Yet a bill currently making its way through the Tennessee legislature would impose new restrictions on groups that hold voter registration drives and subject them to potential jail time and massive fines.

Via: CNN

Jerry Nadler Won’t Stop Until The Full Mueller Report Is Out

April 13, 2019

Nadler has a front-row seat to what he describes as the “borderline criminal and certainly anti-democratic” actions of the president. “With this president, how much is contempt and how much is ignorance, I don’t know, but he is vastly ignorant,” he says. “We’ve never seen this before. My role as the chairman of the Judiciary Committee is to try to ensure that when this is all over, we have as robust a democratic system as we did before.”

Via: Rolling Stone

What Julian Assange’s Arrest Means For Freedom Of The Press

April 12, 2019

Although the indictment focuses on Assange and computer hacking, the bigger issue is that his case raises fundamental questions about press freedom. If Assange is convicted based on what is shown in the indictment, it could give the government a dangerous precedent to use against journalists in the future, First Amendment experts say.

Via: HuffPost

People Can Savage Social Norms, But Also Revive Them

April 10, 2019

In his new book, Cass Sunstein theorizes that we all have the power to create cultural microclimates around us, through the way we act and communicate. When a small group of people shift the way they show approval and disapproval, it can shift the social cures among wider and wider circles.

Via: New York Times

Rebecca Solnit: When The Hero Is The Problem

April 9, 2019

In the wake of Robert Mueller’s long-awaited report, a lot of people reminded us that counting on Mueller to be the St. George who slew our dirtbag dragon was a way of writing off our own obligation and capacity. In fact, positive social change results mostly from connecting more deeply to the people around you than rising above them, from coordinated rather than solo action.

Via: Literary Hub

The N.F.L.’s Great Nashville Cherry Tree Caper

April 8, 2019

Nashville has bigger problems than the loss of 10 cherry trees too. Our state legislature, in thrall to the Koch network, is energetically working to undercut every progressive law Nashville passes. And a recent investigation by The Tennessean, the city’s daily newspaper, revealed that Tennessee has surreptitiously cut 128,000 children, 14,000 from Nashville, from state health-insurance rolls during the past two years.

Via: New York Times

Tennessee Senate Should Not Criminalize Voter Registration

April 7, 2019

“The integrity of voter registration should never be a partisan issue. Both parties want a simple process that is secure and convenient. While our secretary of state might have real concerns after the record influx of new registrations last year, we should be talking about staffing and technology, rather than new criminal penalties.” – State Senator Raumesh Akbari

Via: The Tennessean