Donald Trump is known to oscillate between overt bigotry and the usual “dog whistles” about black crime and pathology. Recently, Trump has doubled down on “tough on crime” rhetoric as he unsuccessfully attempts to court black voters. German Lopez, trying to find concrete policy statements from Trump’s campaign (and largely coming empty) mined some criminal justice priorities from a potential Trump administration by reading his 2000 book, “The America We Deserve.” From Vox:
Trump’s 2000 book, The America We Deserve, offers the clearest view into his criminal justice positions — and they’re unquestionably “tough on crime.”
Trump warns about an incoming crime wave “early in 2000.” (This never happened; crime has steadily dropped since the mid-1990s.) He dismisses social contributors to crime — particularly “poverty, lack of opportunity, or early childhood mistreatment” — as excuses, arguing that such explanations for crime enable “soft” policies that aren’t tough enough to make US streets safe. And he favors “a zero-tolerance policy,” lengthy prison sentences, and aggressive police tactics.
Trump’s thesis explicitly embraces “tough crime policies”:
Tough crime policies are the most important form of national defense. Government’s number-one job is to ensure domestic tranquillity [sic], and that means tranquilizing the criminal element as much as possible. Aggressive anticrime policies are the best social program, because they allow citizens in all neighborhoods, and especially the tougher ones, to live and work in a safe environment. They also protect children from the predatory mob that brutalizes them at every turn.
He calls for putting more people in prison:
According to the bipartisan group Council on Crime in America, on any given day there are about 1.5 times more convicted violent offenders out on the streets on probation or parole than are behind bars.
Clearly we don’t have too many people in prison. Quite the contrary.
Meanwhile, the rest of us need to rethink prisons and punishment. The next time you hear someone saying there are too many people in prison, ask them how many thugs they’re willing to relocate to their neighborhood. The answer: None.
Even though the book was published 16 years ago, it’s reminiscent of the Donald we know now, especially because his assertions aren’t backed with evidence. Lopez references Trump’s support of “broken-windows policing,” a frequent point of criticism in the Department of Justice’s scathing analysis of Baltimore’s police department. Trump — or whatever deeply regretful ghostwriter — promotes the death penalty’s effectiveness in deterring crime, something that Lopez again, points out is unproven and even disagreed upon by a consensus on criminologists.
Trump is laughably behind in the polls, so assuming Clinton rolls a normal campaign free of unforced errors, we won’t have to live the dystopian nightmare of Trump’s vision of America. But, if you want a good overview of what’s at stake, Lopez has graciously saved you from actually opening a Trump-authored book.
Jason is the cofounder of the iconic non-profit Invisible Children which was founded to increase awareness of the horrendous activities of the LRA in Central Africa. Jason was also the director of the iconic Kony 2012 film that took the world by storm. In this two-part interview Jason and Branden talk about what it means to create a movement, what Jason experienced during his breakdown and subsequent recovery, and Jason’s experience in the world of theater.
Aharon Rabinowitz is the head of marketing for Red Giant based in New York City. During our conversation, we discussed the importance of work life balance, his start as a production intern at Sesame Street and why artist’s feel personally offended when you reject their work.
United gets their cheap on, fake news, and Trump hired who?
Welcome to Episode IV. This week, Dan spends some time with his favorite singer/songwriter, Matthew Perryman Jones. Matthew and Dan talk about panic attacks, growing up in Atlanta, the way music is informed by pain and suffering and the way music gives freedom.
If you have spent any time watching television in the last decade you have most likely heard one of Mattew’s songs on shows like Grey’s Anatomy, Pretty Little Liars, One Tree Hill and many others. His insightful writing and voice have drawn comparisons to Leonard Cohen and Jeff Buckley, and he is on the short list of songwriters who skillfully weave the deeply philosophical and the vivid utterly human without ever losing sight of either.
To get his new album Cold Answer, (which features the three songs from him you heard on this episode), visit MPJmusic.com.
Branden sits down with writer and speaker Tyler Huckabee days after Donald Trump was elected President of the United States to talk about empathy, justice, listening, and where we go from here.
Special Election Edition, President Trump to legalized weed and everything in between.
This week we reflect on the election and discuss our strategies for staying sane.
Luca and Ilenia are the founders of Illo, a studio based in Turin, Italy. During our conversation, we discussed their self-driving video bot named Algo, how Illo was formed and how they’ve crafted a unique office culture.
This week we discuss Beyonce’s night at the CMAs, last minute election plans and how SNL might save us all.
We appreciate everyone sticking with us through this long hiatus but are planning our return even as we speak, with a bunch of new goodies and an updated format. In the meantime, here’s a brief primer on Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange — just so you can go into the movie knowing what you’re getting yourself into.