Category: United States

The American Homefront: Understanding the Militarization of Our Nation’s Police

Over the last eight months, police forces across the United States have undergone increasingly vociferous criticism for what many believe to be racially motivated uses of force. Most recently, the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner have galvanized the American public into questioning the accountability, institutions, and practices of American law enforcement agencies. Unfortunately,… Read more »

Offender-Funded Justice

Journalists and human rights organizations have closely documented the correlation between poverty and prison time. The United States, largely as a result of its mass incarceration policies, boasts the largest prison population in the world, and a disproportionate segment of this population has lived beneath the poverty line. Moreover, researchers have demonstrated that convicted felons… Read more »

Detroit’s Water Crisis

“If you’re wealthy enough in Detroit, you can have water. If you’re not wealthy enough, you can’t have water.” This is how Dr. Peter Hammer, the director of the Center for Civil Rights at Wayne State University, characterizes the latest developments in Detroit’s financial crisis. In what the United Nations has declared a violation of… Read more »

Divestment: Efficacy and Impact

The fossil fuel divestment movement emerged at Swarthmore College in 2012. In three short years, divestment has evolved from a small campaign among student activists into a mainstream movement with commitments from universities to churches to the $860 million Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Currently, over $50 billion has been divested from fossil fuels. The movement urges… Read more »

Ferguson, Dissent, and Containment: Militarized and Racialized Policing in the United States

Following police officer Darren Wilson’s murder of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in August of this year, national media attention has been directed toward racial profiling in a supposedly post-racial America, as well as the excessively forceful response of law enforcement to demonstrations following Michael Brown’s killing. The unrest in Ferguson has… Read more »

The Death of Chess

It’s relatively clear that Bobby Fischer, the famously infuriating, enigmatic and opinionated American chess demi-god, recognized the importance of his 1972 World Championship match series against Boris Spassky. Cold War hyper-drama, a life in pursuit of literally one thing—world number one—and a realignment of the entire chess world, it was all there.  Yet Fischer, hours… Read more »

The Northeastern SJP Case

In a motion that has incensed free speech advocates across the country, Boston’s Northeastern University has suspended its chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) until 2015, after the organization engaged in a leaflet campaign around school dormitories. The university has also pursued disciplinary action, including expulsion proceedings, against two group members. The leaflets… Read more »

Limits of the Obama Doctrine: Counterterrorism, Syria, and Ukraine

Two tendencies define the Obama Administration’s approach to armed conflict: retrenchment from inherited wars and minimal military involvement in new crises. Since taking office, President Obama has tried to readjust American foreign policy to reflect new political and fiscal constraints. Seven years of war under the Bush administration wore down the electorate’s patience for foreign… Read more »

Reforming Maine’s Human Trafficking Laws

Although many are familiar with the devastating affects of the sex trafficking industry, it is easy to disassociate ourselves from the issue, and see it as an international problem on which we can have little impact. Sex trafficking is the international, national, and local trade in humans for the purpose of sexual slavery. The victims… Read more »