Tuesday, September 24, 2013

I thought "front page privileges at Left in Alabama come with a somewhat higher responsibility"?

Tutwiler Prison for Women
Evidently Resident Righty, and Left in Alabama Legal Issues Blogger Old Prosecutor is not required to fact check information before reporting it like mooncat admonished me to do, shortly before my front page privileges were suspended for supposedly posting factually incorrect information on the front pages and refusing to correct it. 
 I'm not accusing you of lying (0.00 / 0)
But I do say that too often you don't check your facts before you post, with the result that inaccurate information sometimes ends up on our front page under your byline. That is A Problem. When the inaccuracy is noted, you don't always correct it. Another Problem. This goes directly to your credibility and that of this blog, which is my Problem. Kathy is trying to do you the favor of pointing out that you aren't the least bit consistent in your statements. My read is that you're about a hairsbreadth from calling her a racist which would be not only inaccurate, but a damned lie.You are absolutely entitled to your opinion and to include your opinion in any diary. But front page privileges come with a somewhat higher responsibility -- to make an attempt to check information before you report it, because you are reporting to a rather wide audience here. Expressing opinion is fair game, and so is passing on interesting information from other sources, but I remind you that you do have a responsibility to our readers to make a good faith attempt to insure information is accurate before you pass it on.  We aren't a gossip sheet, nor do we want to be one.  I say this publicly because all our readers need to know that the facts matter to us here. Our readers may prefer to fact check for themselves -- good for them -- but I hope they don't catch us in errors very often. Facts matter, that's job one for me, and an important guideline for our front pagers. 
Old Prosecutor  either intentionally omitted some information, or, posted factually incorrect information on the front page of Left in Alabama. regarding Alabama's prison population.
The basic problem is that Alabama prisons are at appx 180% capacity and the Stae, especially the Legislature, is afraid that a lawsuit may result either (1) a Federal Court ordering mass releases (see California) or (2) a Federal takeover with huge financial mandates.
Alabama prisons are at maximum capacity, but the fear of  mass releases or a federal takeover with huge financial mandates is speculation at worst, and opinion at best.
Many suggest that the problem is that Alabama is imprisoning huge numbers of non violent criminals, Yet the numbers show 75% of all inmates are there for violent crimes.
According to the Montgomery Advertiser a survey response from the state of Alabama for a 2012 report by the Southern Legislative Conference show 75% of all inmates are there for violent crimes, and according to Old Prosecutor it just ain't so large numbers of people are in prison for marijuana possession,  but these figures tell  a different story.
After years of representing victims of racial profiling and police brutality, and investigating patterns of drug law enforcement, and trying to help people who were released from prison face one barrier, one legal roadblock after another to get a job, getting access to housing, getting even food stamps–you know, I had an awakening that our criminal justice system now functions more like a system of racial and social control, than a system of crime prevention or control,” Alexander said on PoliticsNation Monday.
“Our nation’s prison population has more than quintupled,” she said. “And this is due largely to the war on drugs and the ‘get tough’ movement. The drug war has been waged almost exclusively in poor communities of color even though studies have consistently shown now for decades that contrary to popular belief, people of color are no more likely to use or sell illegal drugs than whites, but by waging this drug war almost exclusively in poor communities of color, we’ve now created a vast new racial under-caste.”
Since 1971, when President Richard Nixon declared a war on drugs, there has been a 700% increase in the U.S. prison population. Today, African-Americans are also more likely to spend time in prison for drug related offenses than their white counterparts. According to the Sentencing ProjectAfrican-Americans make up 12% of the nation’s drug users, but represent 34% of those arrested for drug offenses, and 45% of those in state prison for such offense as of 2005.
Now I'm not saying there is a double standard when it comes to posting factually incorrect information on the front page of Left in Alabama, but there is more than a whiff of hypocrisy at best, which goes to the creditability of Left in Alabama.

There can be no unity if there is no justice.  Know justice, know peace.  No Justice, no peace. 


Margherite said...

More than half of LIA's posters have no credibility with me. I don't go there anymore, because I got tired of arguing about facts. No discussion is possible when so-called journalists cherry-pick or embroider facts to fit pet theories.

Redeye said...

And that's what so sad Margherite, Left in Alabama could have been a powerful and effective voice for the voiceless. You know the drill, find a progressive blog, get offended by someone/something that is posted, pick a fight, have the group pick sides, and who wins in the end? Not us liberals that's for sure.