Most misdemeanors in Massachusetts can be decriminalized simply by asking that they not be treated as crimes, or even just at the whim of the judge.

It's my opening bid in most minor criminal cases--bc why wouldn't it be--and every time it works it feels like actual magic.
To name only one benefit: the difference between a criminal drug conviction and a civil drug infraction can be life-changing for US citizens, and life-*saving* for non-citizens for whom even the smallest possession case means mandatory denial of residency and deportation
This 26-yr-old statute is far from perfect. It still excludes offenses relating to sex work, operating under the influence, etc from decriminalization--and decriminalization itself is just a band-aid against so many things which shouldn't be arrestable offenses in the first place
Normalizing decriminalization--first as a legal option, then as a routine resolution--is only an incremental step toward an actual justice system, but it's a big one. Meaningful abolition of is simply not going to be possible while so many arrestable offenses remain on the books

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More from @matt_cam

29 Apr
like so many #immigrationlaw rulings before it, today's #SCOTUS decision on the "stop-time" rule in deportation proceedings (1) can't be described to someone not already familiar in fewer than 3 paragraphs, (2) will make you lol if you think about it too much, (3) will save lives
All you really need to know about this extremely-specifically-important ruling is that it gives possibly tens of thousands of families a chance to stay together in the US who wouldn't have had that chance before. That's it. That's why it matters.
So that's the good news! The bad is that the same bad law still requires applicants to show that qualifying family members (but not themselves) will suffer "exceptional & extremely unusual hardship" upon deportation--eg, substantially beyond what other close families would suffer Image
Read 5 tweets
27 Apr
*giving out donated copies
*to children
*at one facility in Long Beach
*it is in fact not worth asking
I did hear that everyone in the US is going to be limited to no more than 4 lbs of Kamala Harris books per year though, pass it on
Lol nothing matters, literally nothing…
Read 4 tweets
20 Apr
A lot going on rn but N.B.: these extremely damning 25-yr-old BPD records were released at pretty much the exact point at which we knew the #DerekChauvinTrial verdict was imminent

#bospoli #mapoli
(And sorry for being all lawyerly here, fyi N.B. is Latin for 🧐🧐🧐)
Read 4 tweets
20 Apr
Justice Stevens wrote one of the most important (and immigrant-friendly) decisions in the history of crimmigration law at the age of 90, and for whatever others problems I might have with #SCOTUS as an institution that just absolutely rules
Padilla was clearly more than just an ordinary case for Stevens, and it shows in the degree of care and concern in his public statements on how the court continued to interpret it 5 years later ImageImage
Read 4 tweets
20 Apr
Samuel Maverick was one of the first slave-owners in MA, and it's past time #EastBoston disowned him. I've been proposing for yrs that we re-dedicate the square to a different Maverick: the youngest victim of the Boston Massacre.

Keep the name, lose the legacy

#mapoli #bospoli
Or to this guy, whatever, literally any other Maverick
Samuel Maverick:

-owned all of what is now #EastBoston and #Chelsea

-purchased, tortured, and experimented in crude forced eugenics on humans

-does not deserve to have his name on an entire square, a T station, a street, a court, etc

#mapoli #bospoli
Read 4 tweets
1 Apr
man featured in this (paywalled) investigation on credible #MeToo allegations in the #immigrationcourt system has opinions about "reprehensible conduct"
Yes, the guy who gets to pass judgment in the name of "moral turpitude" is a known sex pest to the degree that he is literally not allowed into the building to rubber-stamp deportations with his colleagues
Let me say that again: the judge who just ruled that driving under the influence with a suspended license is "reprehensible" enough to bar immigrants from residency and/or serve as a basis for deportation was #MeToo'd so effectively that he isn't welcome in his own office
Read 5 tweets

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