The Week: Most Recent Social Issues recent posts.en-usThu, 14 Feb 2013 13:17:00 -0500http://theweek.com Recent Social Issues from THE WEEKThu, 14 Feb 2013 13:17:00 -0500The Christopher Dorner apologists: A guide<img src="" /></P><p>Not too many people are mourning Christopher Dorner, the former Los Angeles police officer who allegedly killed four people before police tracked him to a cabin in the woods where, they say, he perished in a fire. Over his nine-day rampage, Dorner is blamed for the murder of the daughter of a retired LAPD officer, her fianc&eacute;, and two law officers; he laid out his plan to kill other officers in a long, rambling manifesto vowing revenge on the LAPD for wrongly kicking him out of the force after he reported an act of police brutality, ruining his life. His threat tied up the entire LAPD for...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/peter-weber" ><span class="byline">Peter Weber</span></a>Thu, 14 Feb 2013 13:17:00 -0500NRA head Wayne LaPierre's paranoid gun manifesto<img src="" /></P><p>"Hurricanes. Tornadoes. Riots. Terrorists. Gangs. Lone criminals." Is this the dystopian future America is heading toward? Or the fevered visions of a paranoid crank? Readers of "Stand and Fight," a new article penned by National Rifle Association head Wayne LaPierre, may be forgiven for concluding the latter. LaPierre's column, published by <em>The Daily Caller</em>, weaves horrors of every stripe to craft a tapestry of pure nightmare, which is then used, of course, to encourage Americans "to buy more guns than ever."</p><p>In LaPierre's world, "Latin American drug gangs have invaded every city of significant...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/ryu-spaeth" ><span class="byline">Ryu Spaeth</span></a>Thu, 14 Feb 2013 11:10:00 -0500WATCH: Footage of alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner's firefight<img src="" /></P><p><iframe width="660" height="397" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe></p><p>CBS News captured exclusive footage of the firefight between alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner and law enforcement officials. After the shootout, which killed one deputy and injured another, Dorner fled to the woods and barricaded himself inside a cabin, refusing to surrender. Officials believe&nbsp;Dorner&nbsp;then shot himself and burned the cabin down.</p><p><strong><br />More from <em>Now This News</em>:</strong></p><p><strong>*</strong> The State of the Union in 170 seconds</p><p><strong>*</strong>&nbsp;Rubio's awkward water moment</p><p><strong>*</strong>&nbsp;Obama on hackers: Stop</p> <a href="">More</a>By Now This NewsWed, 13 Feb 2013 10:16:00 -0500WATCH LIVE: Alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner engaged in shootout<img src="" /></P><p>Former LAPD officer and alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner was reportedly spotted in the remote area of Big Bear, Calif., on Tuesday afternoon. According to the <em>Los Angeles Times</em>, Dorner broke into a home and held a couple hostage before stealing their car. He then engaged in a shootout with federal authorities, reportedly injuring two deputy officers. <em>CBS </em>has a live feed of the event:&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jessica-hullinger" ><span class="byline">Jessica Hullinger</span></a>Tue, 12 Feb 2013 17:05:00 -0500Ted Nugent, Gabby Giffords, and other State of the Union guests with gun messages<img src="" /></P><p class="p1">Though President Obama will be the only one speaking during tonight's State of the Union address, others will be sending silent, yet powerful, messages from the gallery.</p><p class="p1">For decades, presidents and lawmakers have used their guests to the annual address as an attempt to frame looming debates and promote their politics. And this year, with President Obama expected to push early in his second term for tighter gun regulations, partisans on both sides of the aisle are making clear gun-related statements with their plus ones.</p><p class="p1">Perhaps most prominently, rock guitarist and gun advocate Ted Nugent will...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jon-terbush" ><span class="byline">Jon Terbush</span></a>Tue, 12 Feb 2013 12:05:00 -0500Christopher Dorner, drones, and the death of due process<img src="" /></P><p>Even with a $1 million-plus bounty hanging over his head, alleged California killer Christopher&nbsp;Dorner is still on the lam. To its credit, the Los Angeles Police Department has re-opened the case that led to Dorner's firing &mdash; and his alleged vengeance trip &mdash; but judging by the LAPD's shoot-first, verify-later spree of open-firing at the wrong people, Dorner has reason to fear he'll never get his day in court, says Matt Pressberg at the USC Annenberg journalism school's <em>Neon Tommy</em>. That should worry all of us. Due process "is not only a bedrock constitutional principle (Fifth Amendment...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/peter-weber" ><span class="byline">Peter Weber</span></a>Tue, 12 Feb 2013 07:55:00 -0500Should the LAPD use drones to take out alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner?<img src="" /></P><p>Christopher Dorner, the ex-LAPD officer and Navy reserve wanted for the shooting deaths of a motorcycle cop and a former LAPD captain's daughter and her fiance, left a long, rambling note warning authorities that there will be bloodshed to avenge what he saw as an unfair end to his law enforcement career. "I will bring unconventional and asymmetrical warfare to those in LAPD uniform whether on or off duty," he wrote. "You will now live the life of the prey."</p><p>An imposing figure trained in the art of warfare, Dorner is considered armed and extremely dangerous. Southern California police are nervous...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/chris-gayomali" ><span class="byline">Chris Gayomali</span></a>Mon, 11 Feb 2013 17:05:00 -0500Gabrielle Giffords' new gun control ad: Effective?<img src="" /></P><p ><object id="flashObj" width="660" height="397" bgcolor="#FFFFFF" data="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash"><param name="flashVars" value="videoId=2156395028001&amp;playerID=1409164951001&amp;playerKey=AQ~~,AAAAAETmrZQ~,EVFEM4AKJdRjek0MS21pRzf_GTDAM-xj&amp;domain=embed&amp;dynamicStreaming=true" /><param name="base" value="" /><param name="seamlesstabbing" value="false" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="swLiveConnect" value="true" /><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" /><param name="src" value="" /><param name="flashvars" value="videoId=2156395028001&amp;playerID=1409164951001&amp;playerKey=AQ~~,AAAAAETmrZQ~,EVFEM4AKJdRjek0MS21pRzf_GTDAM-xj&amp;domain=embed&amp;dynamicStreaming=true" /><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true" /><param name="swliveconnect" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><param name="pluginspage" value="" /></object></p><p>Former U.S. representative Gabrielle Giffords, who was shot in the head in a 2011 mass shooting, left Congress to focus on her recovery, but she continues to make her presence felt on Capitol Hill. On Monday, Giffords' new super PAC, Americans for Responsible Solutions, released its first TV ad calling for tighter gun-control laws. In the 30-second spot, Giffords urges her former colleagues to take bold and immediate action to curb gun violence. "We have a problem &mdash; where we shop, where we pray, where our children go to school," Giffords says in the ad. "But there are solutions we can agree...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/harold-maass" ><span class="byline">Harold Maass</span></a>Mon, 11 Feb 2013 11:25:00 -0500The assault weapon: An instant guide<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><strong>What is an assault weapon?<br /></strong>The term is notoriously difficult to define. Colloquially, it is used to describe commercially sold semiautomatic rifles with military-style features, including pistol grips, flash suppressors, and large, detachable magazines. Like any semiautomatic gun, these rifles don't need to be reloaded after each shot; depending on the size of the clip or magazine attached, they can fire anywhere from 10 to 100 rounds, with each pull of the trigger firing a single round. Unlike military assault weapons, they are not automatic &mdash; that is, they do not fire continuously as long...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffSun, 10 Feb 2013 08:45:00 -0500Alleged cop killer Christopher Dorner's rambling manifesto: The most chilling and bizarre statements<img src="" /></P><p>Southern California police are still chasing Christopher Dorner, the former LAPD officer and Navy veteran who allegedly killed a young Orange County couple and a cop in what seems like a violent quest for revenge. Authorities warn that Dorner is well-armed, professionally trained, and extremely dangerous.</p><p>It all started Sunday when Monica Quan, 27, the daughter of retired LAPD Capt. Randal Quan, was found shot dead in a parked car outside her Irvine condo along with her fiance, Keith Lawrence. Quan's father reportedly represented Dorner in the hearings that led to his dismissal. The attacks continued...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/chris-gayomali" ><span class="byline">Chris Gayomali</span></a>Fri, 08 Feb 2013 10:58:00 -0500How Obama is winning the immigration debate<img src="" /></P><p class="p1">Will 2013 be the year that America finally gets comprehensive immigration reform? The GOP, still stinging after Mitt Romney garnered a measly&nbsp;27 percent of the Latino vote in November, seems almost eager to work with Democrats to pass a bipartisan immigration bill. And the public seems on board, too: New polls show that more Americans approve of President Obama's handling of immigration than disapprove, and that an overwhelming majority back just the sort of measures he's offering.</p><p class="p1">A new&nbsp;Gallup poll&nbsp;shows wide-ranging support for measures in Obama's plan. For instance, 72 percent...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/keith-wagstaff" ><span class="byline">Keith Wagstaff</span></a>Wed, 06 Feb 2013 12:23:00 -0500Why more guns won't make us safer<img src="" /></P><p><strong>IN HIS&nbsp;</strong><span class="s1"><strong>ARTICLE</strong>&nbsp;</span>on gun control in the last issue of&nbsp;<em>The Week</em>, author Sam Harris argued that firearms serve as a great equalizer, enabling good men and women to defend themselves against stronger and more aggressive attackers. I respect Sam, but he failed to address the two most important pieces of evidence related to this issue: how frequently guns are used in domestic violence against women; and the data confirming the success of gun control in other countries.&nbsp;</p><p class="p2"><span class="s1">It will come as no surprise to most people that men commit homicide 10 times as often as women. Their victims are...</span></p> <a href="">More</a>By Sean FairclothSat, 02 Feb 2013 13:00:00 -0500Check out the NRA's enemies list -- featuring Boyz II Men<img src="" /></P><p>Since the school massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, the National Rifle Association has proved that it is no wallflower when it comes to protecting gun rights. Indeed, the powerful lobby appears to believe that offense is the best defense, going after President Obama and any other lawmaker that seeks to bolster the country's gun laws. Politicians have long felt the NRA's intense scrutiny, with the organization keeping track of every single vote and issuing report card-style grades to keep congressmen in check. And it turns out that the NRA may have its eye on you, too &mdash; that is, if you belong...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/ryu-spaeth" ><span class="byline">Ryu Spaeth</span></a>Fri, 01 Feb 2013 12:22:00 -0500Chicago's rising murder rate: Has gun control failed?<img src="" /></P><p>Last week, Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old girl from Chicago, was performing with her high school band at President Obama's inauguration. On Tuesday, she was gunned down as she sought shelter from the rain under a canopy in a park near her well-regarded prep school &mdash; and less than a mile from Obama's Chicago home. Instantly, the teen &mdash; an honors student, volleyball player, and majorette at Kings College Prep School &mdash; became the face of Chicago's high, and possibly rising, murder rate. She also became part of the debate over gun violence that has erupted since the December massacre...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/harold-maass" ><span class="byline">Harold Maass</span></a>Thu, 31 Jan 2013 15:14:00 -0500Is it exploitative to have Sandy Hook students perform at the Super Bowl?<img src="" /></P><p>At Sunday's Super Bowl, 26 Sandy Hook Elementary students will sing "America The Beautiful" before Alicia Keys performs the national anthem. "Is there a touch of exploitation in the move?" asks Toni Monkovic at <em>The</em> <em>New York Times</em>, in a question she's surely not alone in posing.</p><p class="p1">The key to answering Monkovic's question is in asking two more: <strong>Who does this benefit? And is it doing any harm?</strong></p><p class="p1">At least arguably, this benefits the performing children by letting them express their grief through song. Then again, traveling the country, appearing on morning shows, and singing in front of millions of people...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/jessica-hullinger" ><span class="byline">Jessica Hullinger</span></a>Thu, 31 Jan 2013 11:05:00 -0500Will Tennessee teachers have to out gay students?<img src="" /></P><p>In 2011, Tennessee state Sen. Stacey Campfield (R) earned the ire of gay-rights supporters by authoring and championing a "don't say gay" bill, forbidding teachers to even mention homosexuality to kids from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade. The bill passed out of the relevant committees of both the state House and Senate, but expired at the end of the legislative session in 2012. Well, "it's back," says Katie McDonough at <em>Salon</em>. "And it's awful," even worse than the previous version. Why? This time, Campfield added new language in the bill that "would require teachers to tell parents when...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/peter-weber" ><span class="byline">Peter Weber</span></a>Thu, 31 Jan 2013 09:22:00 -0500