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660 Gasps for Breath, Then Death

We still don't know where the drugs came from.
We know they used midazolam and hydromorphone. We know the combination was experimental. And now we know that instead of working, the drugs took nearly two hours to kill Joseph Wood, as he snorted and gasped for air 660 times.

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Many Deported as "Recent Border Crossers" Are Neither Recent Nor Anywhere Near the Border, Nor Crossing It

This piece originally ran on MSNBC.com.
In an attempt to convince the public that its enforcement of immigration laws is fair and compassionate, the Department of Homeland Security emphasizes its supposedly careful targeting of "recent border crossers." This spin on "border removals" conjures up individuals apprehended in the act of crossing an actual border or shortly thereafter.

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Sorry Mr. Mayor, But Atheists Have Rights, Too

They say you can't fight city hall, but sometimes there's no other choice.
The residents of Warren, Michigan, visit their city hall on a regular basis to pay taxes, to vote, and to visit the library branch and the farmers market that are located there. Since 2009, they have also been able to visit a "Prayer Station" in the building's large atrium.

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Why Are These Indian Children Being Torn Away From Their Homes?

Imagine entering family court and knowing that what's at stake is the person you hold most dear – your child. Now imagine having a judge tell you that he's removing your child from your custody, from your home. When you ask him why, the judge's replies, "I honestly can't tell you." The judge then signs an order giving custody of your son to Social Services.
You might think that such a court proceeding could never happen in the United States – but you'd be wrong.

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VICTORY! A Historic Day for LGBT Equality

“Many of you have worked for a long time to see this day coming. You organized, you spoke up, you signed petitions, you sent letters -- I know because I got a lot of them.”  

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The FBI’s Counterterrorism Sting Operations Are Counterproductive

This piece originally ran on Al Jazeera America.
Adel Daoud is no Ferris Bueller.
A Chicago suburban teen, he couldn’t drive himself to the Jewel Osco grocery store down the street without getting lost, let alone pull a Bueller and hoodwink his parents into letting him have the day off school. He is a D student and forgetful in the extreme. “He’s not a person with a complete mind,” his mother told me.

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"The FBI’s Terror Machine, Tonight on HBO"

More suspense thriller than eat-your-broccoli documentary, The Newburgh Sting follows an FBI informant’s recruitment of four African-American men in an elaborate sting that made headlines in 2009 as a terrorist plot.

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The NSA’s Other Privacy Loophole

Earlier today, a former State Department civil servant named John Tye published an important op-ed in the Washington Post, explaining that the NSA has created a giant loophole in Americans' right to privacy. While we now know a good deal about the NSA's spying on American soil, Tye explains, the NSA's powers to conduct surveillance on foreign soil should trouble us even more.

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Making Flying While Brown Safe Again

When Shoshana Hebshi boarded Frontier Flight 623 on September 11, 2011, she was heading home to Detroit Metro Airport from a visit to her sister in San Francisco. She couldn't have foreseen that being seated next to two other brown-skinned people would end up with her handcuffed, detained, and strip-searched by law enforcement.

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Hobby Lobby and the Dignity of the Refused

Right now we are in a storm of contested rights, as businesses and institutions across the country ask for express legal permission to use religion to discriminate based on sexual orientation, sex, and gender identity.
Last month, the Supreme Court heightened the storm by ruling that the Hobby Lobby corporation doesn't have to comply with the law and provide its workers with insurance that covers contraception, effectively enshrining into law that religion can be used to discriminate against women.

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