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The Prevalence of Child Abuse in Society

“Moooooom, can’t we just stay in the car?” I whined from the backseat of our mini-van over the screams of my baby brother from his car seat. We were parked outside in front of our local grocery store. My mom seemed to hesitate. It was October, after all, and the weather had begun to cool down exponentially compared to the previous month. After a quick moment's deliberation, she turned off the car, grabbed her purse, stepped out and began to walk to the side of the car. Unstrapping my brother from his car seat, she looked at my 10-year-old-self deliberately. “Come on, you can get a...

New War on Drugs

Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, is preparing for a new "War on Drugs." Completely opposed to marijuana, Sessions hopes to crack down on the drug that becomes more mainstream with each passing day. “During a 2016 Senate hearing, called marijuana a dangerous drug," explains Wired journalist, Issie Lapowsky. "He also didn't shy away from Reefer Madness-era moralizing: 'Good people... don't smoke marijuana'" (Lapowsky, 2017, n.p.). The United States technically still bans marijuana in all states, though the drug is allowed for medical and recreational purposes in some. Even with the leniency of select states, marijuana is still considered a gateway drug and is placed in the same...

Grand Rapids’ Grand Plan for Police and Community Relations

How do community members discuss big issues like policing? Grand Rapids, MI is beginning a “police and community relations” program that will include a series of community listening sessions to increase engagement of all citizens in this issue. The community outreach plan includes listening sessions which will be used to decide how the city will utilize $1 million per year to enrich the relationship between community members and the police in Grand Rapids. Described on the city’s website as an “ongoing, robust and authentic community outreach plan,” it will be led by a commission and will focus on recommendations made by the Safe Alliances for Everyone...

Two District Attorneys Call for Transparency in Parole Decisions

Two district attorneys work together to ensure that prosecutors of Savannah, GA, are given all the information necessary before making parole decisions on prison inmates. Chief Deputy District Attorney Greg McConnell is no stranger to the prisoner-release process. Over the years he has encountered numerous cases involving dangerous criminals set to be released from prison, due to the prosecutor’s ignorance of decision-altering information. In one case, McConnell prevented a convicted killer who had a disciplinary record running 663 pages from being released. Apparently, the prosecutors were unaware of the man’s history, having never seen the records prior to McConnell’s mention. In another case McConnell found that...