I PRAY FOR THE SOUL OF
BARACK H. OBAMA
WHO HAS SERVED THE CAUSE OF CIVIL RIGHTS
“I thought I was going to a place where I would be safe,” said Karalen Morthole in an exclusive interview with NBC News. “In my head, I thought these are people who are supposed to be protecting me.”
This week a Marine Corps general ordered that Master Sgt. Ronald E. Bohlayer be charged with raping Morthole after a night of partying and drinking last July at the historic Marine Barracks on Capitol Hill. The charges come as the entire U.S. military is under fire for its handling of sexual assault cases, and barely a year after the release of an Oscar-nominated documentary, “The Invisible War,” that featured allegations of sexual assault and raucous drinking at the Barracks. The allegations got widespread attention from Congress despite strong denials from the Marine Corps.
San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, a star at the Democratic National Conventionand leading advocate of immigration reform, criticized Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell‘s call for significant changes to the bipartisan bill now before the Senate.
“What we need now are folks who are seriously working to pass it come together and make the compromises, make the small changes that are needed,” Castro told CBS News after a White House event with business and labor leaders united behind comprehensive reform. “It has a strong framework and it’s going to take serious legislators who actually want to get things done.”
McConnell took the Senate floor and predicted the bill as drafted by the so-called Gang of 8 (four Republicans and four Democrats) would fail as written. Even so, McConnell voted to begin debate on the legislation, helping it clear one important procedural hurdle.
“At the risk of stating the obvious, this bill has serious flaws,” McConnell said. “In the days ahead there will need to be major changes to this bill if it’s going to become law. These include, but are not limited to, the areas of border security,government benefits and taxes.”
On the issue of border security, Castro echoed the White House contention that improvements in border security ought to pave the way for comprehensive reform. The chief goal of that reform is creating a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants already here. Under the legislation, most undocumented workers would be immediately protected from deportation but have to wait up to 13 years to obtain citizenship.
Castro also said it would be impossible to create absolute border security, implying any attempt to tie legalization of undocumented workers to that standard would gut the 1,077-page bill.
By Collier Meyerson
On Monday, the Supreme Court handed down a controversial decision to uphold the sampling of some suspected criminals’ DNA, a practice at least 26 states have already implemented. In a 5-4 ruling, conservative Justice Antonin Scalia sided with the liberal justices and wrote the dissenting opinion, citing indiscriminate search as a concern:
“Searching every lawfully stopped car…might turn up information about unsolved crimes the driver had committed, but no one would say that such a search was aimed at ‘identifying’ him, and no court would hold such a search lawful.”
The case has sparked a robust dialogue surrounding a suspected criminal’s right to privacy. The 4th Amendment of the Constitution states that “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.” Dissenters of the decision believe that without a warrant, DNA sampling breaches an individual’s rights to privacy.
On All In with Chris Hayes Monday, attorney Barry Scheck sided with Scalia’s emphasis on privacy rights for Americans. Scheck, founder of The Innocence Project, an organization that helps prisoners prove their innocence through DNA testing, explained after the show why he falls on the side of the Supreme Court. Considering Scheck’s life work in exonerating prisoners, what makes him disagree with this use of the practice? Check out the video to find out his answer.