Yesterday, @Grits4Breakfast, a criminal justice reformer I respect and frequently agree with, criticized the recent piece wherein I argue that, as a matter of substance and rhetoric, the slogan/lodestar "defund the police" should be replaced. (1/x)
My piece made clear that the national Democratic Party had abandoned the slogan--indeed, that is a cornerstone of my case that it is utterly unpopular and politically untenable. But in @Grits4Breakfast's telling, the slogan at this point is nothing but a GOP talking point.
Yet here is a new article in The Nation, which chose, among all the criminal justice debates it could have hosted, "Do We Need Police?"…
Here is a new Teen Vogue article framed around the supposed utility of "defund the police"…
Here is a new Vox article that calls this the "defund the police era"…
Here is an ABC News article published today, "Activists push to disband Minneapolis police in upcoming vote"…
Here's a story about a new documentary at Sundance that is framed around a positive portrayal of "defund the police" efforts…
These are just from the last few days. Let me reiterate: @Grits4Breakfast and I agree that #DefundThePolice is politically untenable and won't happen.

But contra his critique, it remains the focus of a big part of the activist left and intelligentsia, & IMHO, this is a mistake
One might disagree with me on the merits of whether *defund* is the right policy or the question of whether it is political malpractice; but don't tell me that it is *just* a right-wing talking point now.
And this from two days ago
More: Slate on the politics of policing in Birmingham, including the influence of "defund"…

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More from @conor64

21 Jul
A thread addressing the retort I most anticipated on my California piece -- link below, and screenshot of email below that. (1/x)…
When I hear the caricature of "cramming" more housing into areas that tourists visit, and the claim that they would be spoiled and no one would come after that, I tell people, stop thinking Tokyo (though it is great) and start thinking San Sebastian
No one walks around San Sebastian thinking, "Gar, this is overbuilt and spoiled." And yet its density permits many more people to enjoy a given plot than Carmel permits.
Read 4 tweets
13 Jul
While I get the impulse to figure out whether the illiberal right or left is a bigger threat-and do so myself when forced, as when I voted for Hillary Clinton instead of DJT, seeing him as the bigger threat-I try to remind people that competing illiberalisms fuel one another, &
that this is so even when the illiberalisms are *not* equivalent, morally or practically.

And I find it a useful exercise to think of how we feel when the illiberalism we find to be the bigger threat manifests, and to understand that there are folks "on the other side" who
feel similarly in the other direction.

As an extremely anti-censorship person, this has certainly helped me to understand even impulses to censor that I sympathize with least. Of course, my project is to seek clarity, not to align in solidarity with any faction, and that bothers
Read 4 tweets
18 Jun
IMHO, radical clarity here requires acknowledging the legal and principled differences between higher ed and K through 12 as well as the distinction between teaching versus promoting material.

Some Constitutionally protected speech, like hard core pornography, should absolutely be banned from first and second grade classrooms.

Some heinous ideas, like Nazi ideology, should be taught as part of history education, but absolutely never promoted or endorsed.
If you have public schools, which some anarchists and libertarians don't want, you have to bite the bullet and recognize that the state will be including some ideas and excluding others from curriculum. Some matters of controversy should be debated. But not all. Example:
Read 6 tweets
10 Jun
Attention Californians and journalists: you should know about Assembly Bill 343 and Assemblyman Vince Fong's important, long-running efforts to strengthen the CA Public Records Act (1/x)
On paper journalists and all CA residents have a right to broad categories of public information. But as many reporters have discovered, bureaucrats often turn down legitimate requests, leaving no recourse except filing an expensive lawsuit (2/x)
Fong wants to create an independent ombudsperson to settle denied Public Records Act requests, creating a mechanism other than lawsuits to vindicate the rights of CA residents and journalists. And his bill passed the Assembly unanimously, but still faces the Senate and governor
Read 5 tweets
29 May
I get the market for mass market "macrobrews" and for "microbrews" and even for stuff in between but I don't get this "limited edition":
Nor do I get this "pure" Coors Light. What's in the other stuff?!
But apparently it's a thing because there's competition
Read 4 tweets
28 May
Is it okay to generalize about a racial or gender group on the basis of something that is true of a mere plurality of its members? A majority? A supermajority? For many the answer is *that depends on the standard's implications for the ideological point I'm trying to make.*
So, for example, it's objectionable to be cisnormative, because it erases the small percentage of people who are trans; and Model Minority Myth is objectionable; but speaking of white people as possessing wealth privilege is fine. The logic is wildly inconsistent.
The correct insight that *Asian Americans are wealthy* obscures and elides e.g. *recent Hmong immigrants* and the correct insight that *white people have family wealth privilege* elides e.g. white Appalachian kids born into deeply indebted families are very similar.
Read 4 tweets

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