• May 15, 2015
    It's the time of year when politicians line up to praise mothers. Last year, President Barack Obama even issued a lighthearted public service announcement reminding his audience not to forget the holiday. But this year, thanks to some of those same politicians, more than a thousand migrant mothers and children in the United States will spend Mother’s Day behind bars.
  • Apr 28, 2015
  • Apr 20, 2015
    Today is National Weed Day in the United States. That may prompt chuckles among many, but, as lighthearted as much of today’s commentary may be, U.S. marijuana policy is no laughing matter.
  • Apr 2, 2015
    When I first visited the Baltimore City Detention Center in 1999, I found an archaic, decaying facility that held people in grim cells with no direct natural light. The detention center held many children who were charged as adults, and they suffered some of the worst abuses — including extended periods of confinement in cells punctuated by brutal acts of violence, often encouraged by guards.
  • Mar 27, 2015
    The White House has been trying to stem the flow of unaccompanied children into the U.S. from Mexico. Steve Inskeep talks to Human Rights Watch's Bill Felick and the State Department's Simon Henshaw.
  • Mar 17, 2015
    “They’ll stop them just for being black,” a 39-year-old African American woman named Holly told me last August, describing how police in and around her home town of Ferguson, Missouri, treated young black men. “I’ve actually stood there and watched cousins of mine get pulled over. [The police] would sit them down, pat them down, even after they knew they had the wrong person. I have so many of those stories.”
  • Jan 23, 2015
    Contrary to the assertions of overreach by House Republicans, President Obama's executive actions on immigrants actually don't go far enough.
  • Jan 12, 2015
    On South Dakota’s impoverished Lower Brule Sioux reservation, $1.2 million of US government funding dedicated to providing the tribe with drinking water has disappeared. Roughly $2.6 million in federal money earmarked for education and other social programs went missing – after which the reservation’s school system had to be overhauled due to poor performance.
  • Jan 12, 2015
    More children work in agriculture than in any other industry in the world. But the scale and complexity of the problem is no excuse for tolerating a practice that traps children in multi-generational cycles of poverty, or, worse, leaves them injured, maimed, or dead.
  • Jan 7, 2015
    When for-profit companies make money off the criminal justice system through privatization of prisons, it often triggers serious public debate. But there has been precious little scrutiny of local governments that use courts to make money for themselves. We should all be paying closer attention, because that kind of for-profit justice often means shifting public costs onto a community’s poorest members and creating perverse incentives for courts to ratchet up the pain.