Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Signs Bills That Hurt Free Speech And Due Process Rights

Less than a week after Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) signed a law protecting free speech on college campuses, he signed one that threatens that very protection.
As The Daily Wire previously reported, Abbott has signed numerous bills and posted videos about the new laws on Twitter. But on Friday, he signed two laws that ostensibly deal with campus sexual assault that hurt not only free speech rights but also due process rights.
The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) had written to the governor twice to let him know their concerns with the bill and also sent a letter asking him to veto the bills. While Abbott vetoed many bills on Friday, he did not veto SB 212 and HB 1735. From FIRE:
As a brief recap, both pieces of legislation — SB 212 and HB 1735 — use an unconstitutionally overbroad definition of sexual harassment that lacks the fundamental requirement that the conduct in question be objectively offensive to a reasonable person. SB 212 compounds the problem further by requiring all college and university employees to report any conduct they reasonably believe satisfies that definition to the institution’s Title IX apparatus. Failure to do so subjects the employee to termination and criminal misdemeanor charges, which carry potential penalties of up to $2,000, 180 days in jail, or both.
HB 1735 will take effect Sept. 1. Most of SB 212’s provisions also take effect on Sept. 1, while the bill’s criminal penalties take effect Jan. 1, 2020. This means Texas’s students and faculty will be forced to navigate new, unconstitutional speech codes this academic year that will inevitably lead to an explosion of frivolous investigations into protected speech, self-censorship, and possibly even jail time for faculty members who run afoul of the new law.
The biggest problem with these bills is that the definition allows for too much subjectivity, meaning school officials, fearing they could lose their jobs or go to jail, will likely start reporting any and all instances involving sex or sexually charged speech. 
We’ve seen what happens in a case like this. Grant Neal was a football player and pre-med student at Colorado State University-Pueblo. He became close to a woman who part of the school’s Athletic Training Program. They engaged in some sexual activity, which left hickeys on the woman’s neck. One of her peers saw these marks, learned they were from Neal, and reported him for sexual assault.
Even though the woman said she was not raped or assaulted (Neal has recordings of her saying so), Neal was suspended. Neal sued and was able to settle with CSUP out of court. 
FIRE, in its veto request letter, also noted that HB 1735 demands schools do notinform the police when they decide to investigate an allegation they deem to be severe enough that they would go against the accuser’s wishes and investigate. The bill essentially tells schools not to alert the police about potentially violent perpetrators.
The bill also requires as a default the ability for accusers to drop courses they share with the accused without academic penalty. As FIRE noted, this creates an incentive for accusers to get out of classes in which they are struggling by falsely accusing classmates. We’ve seen it before. A woman at Ohio State University brought a false sexual assault claim against a male student — months after the encounter — just days after she was told she was about to fail her first-year medical school program (for the second time). By making her dubious accusation (which text messages and multiple witnesses disputed), she was spared from expulsion.
Finally, neither of the bills signed provides meaningful due process protections for accused students.
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is set to release new Title IX guidance for schools that would require them to provide basic due process protections for accused students. These new Texas bills will end up running afoul of those new rules.

Trump Trolls Ocasio-Cortez On 2020; She 'Calls His Bluff,' Disses 'The Rest Of The Country'

On Sunday, President Trump indulged in some more of his presidential trolling on his favorite social media platform, this time targeting Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Trump said he actually agreed with something that came out of the democratic socialist's mouth for once: "'I think we have a very real risk of losing the Presidency to Donald Trump." He then went on to taunt Democrats over their attempts to impeach him. Not one to miss an opportunity to tweet herself, the freshman Democrat "call[ed] his bluff" in response.
As The Daily Wire reported, Trump issued a series of 2020 and impeachment-themed tweets Sunday and Monday, including one starring "the future" of the Democratic Party.
"Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. 'I think we have a very real risk of losing the Presidency to Donald Trump.' I agree, and that is the only reason they play the impeach card, which cannot be legally used!" Trump tweeted Sunday.
The tweet followed another post warning Democrats against impeachment. "Almost 70% in new Poll say don’t impeach," Trump wrote. "So ridiculous to even be talking about this subject when all of the crimes were committed by the other side. They can’t win the election fairly!"
In response to his use of her comment to make an anti-impeachment argument, Ocasio-Cortez issued her own tweet in which she said she declared that while he "may fool the rest of the country," she is willing to call his "bluff" on impeachment.
"Mr. President, you’re from Queens," she wrote. "You may fool the rest of the country, but I’ll call your bluff any day of the week. Opening an impeachment inquiry is exactly what we must do when the President obstructs justice, advises witnesses to ignore legal subpoenas, & more." She signed off with an abrupt "Bye."

Mr. President, you’re from Queens.

You may fool the rest of the country, but I’ll call your bluff any day of the week.

Opening an impeachment inquiry is exactly what we must do when the President obstructs justice, advises witnesses to ignore legal subpoenas, & more.

Bye 👋🏽

51.6K people are talking about this
Along with the Democrats' impeachment talks, Trump has been waging a war against reports on various polls showing him far behind Democratic frontrunners, particularly former Vice President Joe Biden. On Monday morning, the president continued his 2020 talk, citing the massive crowds expected for his rally in Orlando and slamming the "Fake Polls." 
"Big Rally tomorrow night in Orlando, Florida, looks to be setting records," he tweeted Monday. "We are building large movie screens outside to take care of everybody. Over 100,000 requests. Our Country is doing great, far beyond what the haters & losers thought possible — and it will only get better!"
"Only Fake Polls show us behind the Motley Crew," he added. "We are looking really good, but it is far too early to be focused on that. Much work to do! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!"
Later that day, he posted a few more comments on the polling data, particularly a recent Fox News poll. "Polls are always bad for me. They were against Crooked Hillary also," he wrote. "Something weird going on at Fox. Our polls show us leading in all 17 Swing States. For the record, I didn’t spend 30 hours with @abcnews, but rather a tiny fraction of that. More Fake News."
Trump's tweets below:

Big Rally tomorrow night in Orlando, Florida, looks to be setting records. We are building large movie screens outside to take care of everybody. Over 100,000 requests. Our Country is doing great, far beyond what the haters & losers thought possible - and it will only get better!

42.5K people are talking about this

Only Fake Polls show us behind the Motley Crew. We are looking really good, but it is far too early to be focused on that. Much work to do! MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

46.4K people are talking about this

.@FoxNews Polls are always bad for me. They were against Crooked Hillary also. Something weird going on at Fox. Our polls show us leading in all 17 Swing States. For the record, I didn’t spend 30 hours with @abcnews, but rather a tiny fraction of that. More Fake News @BretBaier

32.1K people are talking about this

The WHO says ‘burnout’ is now an official medical condition with 3 warning signs

The World Health Organization has classified "burnout" as a clinical medical condition.

Wait, what is burnout?

As defined by the WHO, "burnout" is work-related and is "a syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed."
The WHO explains that burnout has three components: feelings of energy depletion or exhaustion; increased mental distance from one's job, or feelings of negativism or cynicism related to one's job; and reduced professional efficacy.
The organization warns that burnout "refers specifically to phenomena in the occupational context and should not be applied to describe experiences in other areas of life."

Well. OK. Am I at risk for burnout?

According to Business Insider, physicians are at very high risk for experiencing burnout when compared to other American workers. Other high-stress professions are also at risk for experiencing burnout.
That doesn't necessarily mean that other American workers not in high-risk positions are exempt from experiencing burnout, however.
CNN report explains that American psychologist Herbert Freudenberger coined the term "burnout" in 1974, and notes that severe cases of burnout often stem from depression.

So what are the 3 big things to look for? 

  • Feeling exhausted, depleted, or otherwise completely worn down;
  • Increased mental and cognitive distance from your job, including feeling vastly negative and cynical about your job; and
  • A significantly reduced quality of work.

What are the risk factors for burnout?

  • Work overload
  • Lack of control
  • Insufficient reward
  • Absence of fairness
  • Community
  • Conflicting values

The following video showcases the ins and outs of burnout

Burnout Is Now A Legitimate Diagnosis: Here Are The Symptoms And How To Treat It | TODAY

Mastercard announces that transgender customers no longer have to use legal name on credit cards

Mastercard has announced that it will begin allowing transgender people and those who identify as non-binary to use names other than their legal name for credit cards.

Here's what we know

"What we're introducing is a card that represents an individual as who they truly are," Raj Seshadri, the president of U.S. issuers at Mastercard said, according to Time. "This is something that should be accessible to everyone in the way they want it and there shouldn't be any pain in that."

In a press release published on Monday, Mastercard announced the rollout of this "True Name" card policy. It said that this would "ease a major pain point for the transgender and non-binary community."

The change, according to the press release, came after leadership at the company became aware of a study from 2015 which said that 32 percent of people who identified as transgender and tried to use a form of ID that did not match either their name or their gender reported being harassed.

Mastercard assured users that the new policy would not in any way affect the security of the cards. This new policy is still under development and Mastercard did not announce a specific date when it would take effect.

"We are allies of the LGBTQIA+ community, which means if we see a need or if this community is not being served in the most inclusive way, we want to be a force for change to help address and alleviate unnecessary pain points," Randall Tucker, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for Mastercard said in the press release. "This translates not only for our Mastercard employee community but for our cardholders and the communities in which we operate more broadly. Our vision is that every card should be for everyone."

True Name

Milwaukee police officer killed by driver with 4 prior DUI convictions

Officer Kou Her of the Milwaukee Police Department is dead after being involved in a fatal crash Tuesday morning, according to WITI-TV. The suspect is a Milwaukee-area resident with four prior DUI convictions, the station reported.

What are the details of the accident?

The fatal accident took place around 1:30 a.m. local time, the station said. The officer had just gotten off work when he was struck by the suspect, who has yet to be named.
The suspect — who witnesses say was traveling at a high rate of speed — struck officer Her's vehicle after crossing an intersection at a red light. Officers were able to take the suspect into custody. Her was taken to nearby Froedtert Hospital where he died from his injuries, WITI reported.
Her, a two-year veteran of the force, is survived by his wife, two sisters, six brothers, and his mother and father. Both Her's mother and father served in Vietnam, according to WITI.

What else? 

In a news conference, Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales revealed the suspect is a 34-year-old resident with four DUI convictions. The most recent conviction occurred in May 2017, and the suspect was still on probation at the time of Her's death.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett expressed his sadness over the incident in a statement.
“This is a difficult time, as we've had before in the last year, to lose a police officer," Barrett said. "I want the residents of this city to know and to appreciate the work that's done by our police officers."
Milwaukee Alderman Cavalier Johnson added, "This is a sad day for this city, a sad day for the state."
The Wisconsin State Patrol is investigating the fatal crash.

Off-duty Wisconsin cop killed while trying to stop armed robbery

Racine, Wisconsin, Police Officer John Hetland is dead after intervening during an armed robbery at a restaurant Monday night, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

What happened?

Hetland was inside Teezers Bar and Grill when the incident occurred, according to the Journal Sentinel.

The masked suspect reportedly entered the bar and attempted the robbery. One of the bar's owners said that the suspect fired his weapon and fled after a struggle. D.J. Daams, one of the bar's co-owners, said that the suspect attempted to rob the bar, but "when confronted, he wrestled with the good Samaritan and got free. At which time he fired shots and ran at the back door."

Hetland sustained a single, fatal gunshot wound, the paper reported.
In a news release, Racine Police Chief Arthel L. Howell said that Hetland, a 24-year department veteran, "took immediate action to stop this felony in progress in order to protect life and property."

"It is with profound sadness and grief we announce the line of duty death," he continued.

"Officer Hetland was a trusted and highly respected member of the department, serving in various positions over the years, including an assignment as a field training officer, as well as a member of the Greater Racine FBI Gang Task Force," Howell added. 

Bar co-owner Daams said he is grateful for the officer's heroic actions. 
"All I can say is that thoughts and prayers are with the family, and that the police have our full cooperation in apprehending this guy," he said. "This is a truest heart-breaking situation, and John was a hero. If it wasn't for his heroic act, no one can predict the outcome."

No arrests have been made at the time of this writing, but those people with any information are asked to contact the Kenosha County Sheriff's Department at (262) 656-1234. Citizens may also contact Crime Stoppers at (262) 636-9330 or text 274637 (CRIMES). Text messages should begin with RACS, according to the Journal Sentinel.

According to the Journal Sentinel, the robbery suspect was described as a black male in his 20s, standing approximately 5 feet, 8 inches tall. The suspect was wearing a navy blue hooded sweatshirt and black bandanna.

The Kenosha County Sheriff's Department is investigating the incident, along with the Racine County Sheriff's Department, the State of Wisconsin Crime Laboratory, and the Wisconsin State Patrol.

Monday, 17 June 2019

Police are caught on camera repeatedly punching a handcuffed 16-year-old girl in the leg and slamming her foot in a car door as they arrest her on a runaway warrant

Police in Michigan have been filmed repeatedly punching a handcuffed 16-year-old girl in the leg and slamming her foot in a car door as they arrested her on a runaway warrant.
The incident occurred in Lansing on Friday morning when police were called following reports the girl and a 15-year-old boy had escaped from a nearby youth detention center. 
Both officers involved, Lindsey Howley and Bailey Ueberroth, were placed on paid administrative leave after cellphone footage of the arrest emerged. 
The Lansing Police Department has also since released the body cam footage from both officers. 

Police said the two teens were being housed at the youth center on probation violations and the officers had warrants to detain them after they fled a day earlier.
The girl and boy allegedly took off running when police arrived after a resident called 911 to report their whereabouts on Friday morning.
Bodycam footage showed officer Ueberroth chasing the girl through the street and handcuffing her before walking her back to his patrol car as she shouted at onlookers. 
At one point, one of the girl's hands slipped free from the handcuff and she was filmed struggling as the officer tried to cuff her again. 
Officer Howley then arrived and the bodycam video shows them both trying to handcuff the girl. 
They carried her to the patrol car by her arms and legs after the girl laid down on the road. 
After they put her in the backseat of the patrol car, the girl could be seen putting her leg out to prevent the officers from closing the door.  
Cellphone footage shot by a resident, as well as the bodycam video, captured Howley repeatedly punching the girl in the thigh as they yelled for her to put her leg inside the vehicle. 

The girl could be heard screaming at the officer to stop hitting her as she continued to hold the door open with her leg. 
'No b**ch, get your hands off me. You're not supposed to put your hands on me,' the girl said. 
At one point, the girl kicked Howley's body camera off and the officer had to reattach it. 
She yelled out in pain at one point as officer Howley repeatedly tried to slam the door shut while the teen's foot was jammed. 
'I ain't doing s**t,' the teen could be heard saying as nearby residents yelled at the officers saying they were going to break her leg. 
Officer Howley eventually slammed the door shut and the girl could be heard screaming as officer Ueberroth got into the front seat of the patrol car to drive away. 
When asked about punching the teen, Lansing Police Chief Mike Yankowski said during a press conference that it was standard protocol when a person is resisting arrest. 
The girl's mother, Tonia Lilly, believes the situation should have been handled different. 
'The issue is is not what my daughter did prior to the “so called standard procedure" used, whether she was resisting or not, or even the fact that she is a young, African American, 16-year-old female child being struck by a Caucasian officer,' she said on Facebook.
'The fact remains that she was punched! Not once, not twice, not three times! They dragged her, slammed her foot in the door, and repeatedly punched her! Cuffed and buckled in the seatbelt! Regardless of race, color, creed, religion, gender, or any other factors, NOBODY deserves that, ESPECIALLY A CHILD.'  
Police said the girl was taken back to the youth center and did not require medical treatment. 
The 15-year-old boy was also detained and returned to the youth center. 
Howley, who has been with the department for about a year, and Ueberroth, who has been there six months, were both placed on administrative leave on Saturday while the department carries out its investigation. 
A protest was held outside the police department on Saturday as people rallied against police brutality. About 100 protesters knelt for periods of time when the national anthem was played.