Civil and Constitutional Rights

Turning protest into policy reform

Turning protest into policy reform

Walking the walk isn’t enough in fighting racism

AS 40,000 PEOPLE converged on the streets of Boston in late August to march against white supremacy, Massachusetts stood as a beacon of nationwide resistance to the racist policies coming out of the White House. It was fitting; historically, many revolutions have started in Massachusetts. Raising our collective voice against bigotry is a healthy exercise(...)

Read More »

Baker opens a legal can of worms

Baker opens a legal can of worms

Pushes strict liability for deaths caused by distributing illegal drugs

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER filed new legislation last month to battle the opioid crisis. His bill proposes some “important updates” to our arsenal of weapons in this fight, one of which, he says, would add a measure of “accountability” to the current strategy of treatment, education, and prevention. Specifically, the governor intends to “ensure that those who(...)

Read More »

Come clean on pot use

The Cannabis Control Commission met for the first time on Monday, and two of the five members refused to say whether they had ever smoked pot. Commissioners Jennifer Flanagan, a former state senator, and Shaleen Title, who worked on the ballot question that legalized recreational marijuana, declined to say whether they had used marijuana. Britte(...)

Read More »

Perchance to dream

College campuses are anxiously waiting for President Trump’s decision on whether to dismantle or even substantially change the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. DACA was an executive order from then-President Barack Obama in 2012 that stopped deportation of undocumented immigrants who were brought to the US as children and who pose no security threat. But(...)

Read More »

City, Boston teachers kick the can

City officials and the Boston Teachers Union eagerly shared the news on Thursday that the two sides reached a tentative contract agreement after 18 months of negotiation. But it turns out it’s a lot easier to get to “yes” when you take one of the toughest issues off the table. The agreement, which still must(...)

Read More »

Feds overreach on Teamsters

The feds came up short again on Tuesday in trying to turn obnoxious or even sleazy behavior into federal crimes. It happened when the US Attorney’s office in Boston tried to make bare-knuckled political patronage at the state’s Probation Department a crime of racketeering and it happened again on Tuesday when a jury rejected a(...)

Read More »