America Shaken by Another Citizen Death at the Hands of Violent Police—And Four Important Updates in Connection with 1/6

Jan 28, 2023 | 1h 28m |

Devoting a full hour to exposition, analysis, understanding, and reaction to the tragic and horrifying murder of Tyre Nichols by five Memphis Police Officers in early January—including a graphic review of four videotapes of the stops, apprehensions, assaults, and beatings that led to the appropriate firings and state charges. Embedded in that examination, a prediction of Justice Department involvement in both a criminal civil rights prosecution and a “pattern and practice”-type review of systemic policing failures. Finally, in answer to the legitimate question “What can I do?”—a two-fold recommendation: Support of and demand for congressional passage of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act (stalled in the 117th Congress and to be re-introduced in the 118th) and universal and practical training of all newly-recruited and tenured law enforcement in the constitutional trappings of use of force, arrest procedure, and community engagement issues relevant to effective, service-based policing in the 21st Century.

Another week of diverse but important developments in our continuing attempts to make sense of, learn lessons from, and remedy the criminal and conspiratorial behaviors that prompted the insurrection and attack on the Capitol on January 6, including: The most recent convictions of Oath Keeper defendants for seditious conspiracy—following the previous convictions of other leaders of this white nationalist anti-government group and in the midst of the continuing trial of other leaders of the Proud Boys, similarly charged in the federal district court in Washington, D.C.; the 80-month sentencing of the attacker who brutally assaulted Brian Sicknick one day before his untimely death; the impending trial of former White House Trade Advisor Peter Navarro on two counts of contempt of Congress; and—perhaps most important—the “impending” decisions of the Atlanta-based District Attorney about charging ex-President Donald Trump and his aides for attempting to subvert and undermine the 2020 election results in Georgia.

Finally, during this term at the United States Supreme Court—the first major decision dismissing a claim for disability benefits made by a veteran whose petition was untimely—along with a stunning (ethics-invoking) revelation about former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, who placed his imprimatur on the failed investigation into the premature leak of the Dobbs abortion decision, even as he was receiving $1 million from the Court for providing security recommendations and other contracted services for the Justices and their families.