George Floyd

COMMENTARY

Naomi Osaka’s withdrawal from the French Open highlights how prioritizing mental wellness goes against the rules, on the court and off

BY: and - June 5, 2021

Japanese tennis star Naomi Osaka announced that she would withdraw from the French Open after she was fined and threatened with being disqualified for not speaking to media during the tournament to protect her mental health. French Open officials and others initially reacted not with concern but by criticizing her for not fulfilling her obligations. […]

Biden urges Congress to act on policing reform after meeting with George Floyd’s family

BY: - May 25, 2021

WASHINGTON — A year after George Floyd’s killing by a Minneapolis police officer, his family returned Tuesday to Washington, D.C., where lawmakers have been attempting to craft a bipartisan bill to overhaul the nation’s policing laws. Congress failed to act by the anniversary of Floyd’s death — the deadline that President Joe Biden had urged lawmakers […]

COMMENTARY

How qualified immunity protects police officers accused of wrongdoing

BY: - May 8, 2021

When police officers kill people without apparent justification, those officers may face both criminal charges — as in the case of Derek Chauvin, convicted of murdering George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020 — and civil lawsuits. Floyd’s family filed a federal civil rights suit against Chauvin and three other officers, alleging they used “unjustified, excessive, […]

Chauvin verdict: Guilty on 3 charges in George Floyd’s death

BY: - April 20, 2021

MINNEAPOLIS — The jury has spoken, and found Derek Chauvin guilty in the death of George Floyd. The former Minneapolis police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than 9 minutes while he was handcuffed and face down on the pavement last May.  Chauvin was taken into custody and will be sentenced in eight weeks. The […]

COMMENTARY

Iowa should stop keeping police discipline secret

BY: - March 16, 2021

The actions of journalists and police officers were in the spotlight last week in a Des Moines courtroom. The scrutiny came at the trial of Andrea Sahouri, a Des Moines Register reporter. She was arrested while covering a chaotic protest last May 31, six days after George Floyd died under the knee of a Minneapolis […]

Policing bill, without a racial-profiling ban, moves through Iowa Senate

BY: - March 3, 2021

A version of Gov. Kim Reynolds’ controversial “Back the Blue” bill is moving through the Senate, but the ban on racial profiling that was part of the initial proposal is now gone. The Senate Judiciary Committee voted Wednesday evening to advance Senate File 497, marking it safe ahead of Friday’s legislative deadline. The bill would […]

COMMENTARY

Five things that didn’t totally suck in 2020

BY: - December 28, 2020

During a New Year’s Eve gathering last year, my friends and I merrily shredded a 2019 calendar and said good riddance. We had every reason to expect that 2020 would be a time of renewal for ourselves and our country. This year, if we get together for New Year’s, it will likely be via a […]

3rd District candidates: Police ‘bad actors’ should be addressed

BY: - October 28, 2020

Congress needs to continue to address social justice issues in the aftermath of cases in which police were accused of assaulting and even killing suspects this year, candidates for Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District seat say. Former Congressman David Young, a Republican, said the nation needs to continue working on racial issues. “I do not believe the […]

State panel: Lawmakers should ban profiling, report data on race in police stops

BY: - October 23, 2020

A governor-appointed criminal justice advisory group will call on Iowa lawmakers to ban police officers from discriminating against people based on race or other characteristics, the panel decided Friday. The criminal justice panel also called for data collection and analysis to look for disparate treatment by officers. Its recommendations will ask lawmakers to enact civil […]

Proposal to remove Confederate statues from national parks gains traction

BY: - August 29, 2020

WASHINGTON — A proposal to get rid of Confederate statues and memorials in national parks is gaining some traction this year as opposition to the public display of Confederate symbols grows. Rep. Betty McCollum, a Minnesota Democrat who leads the House subcommittee that oversees spending for the Interior Department, included language in the agency’s fiscal […]

‘You just have to act’: Thousands outraged by police brutality rally at March on Washington

BY: and - August 28, 2020

WASHINGTON – On the 57th anniversary of the original March on Washington and in the throes of a pandemic, thousands of demonstrators on Friday joined Democratic lawmakers on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to demand Congress act on police brutality and voter suppression. The event, organized by the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, […]

Expert: Iowa should share more data on traffic stops to fight police bias

BY: - August 10, 2020

Iowa should expand the amount of data it collects on traffic stops and share it publicly, an authority on bias issues told a state panel Monday. Arthur Rizer, a former police officer and U.S. Army veteran who directs the criminal justice and civil liberties program for Washington, D.C.-based free-market think tank R Street Institute, said […]