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It’s Time to get Excited About Humankind

Because not everything sucks.

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Police Offer Safe Spaces For Craigslist Exchanges

Horrific crimes point to the need for better protocols in internet-initiated deals.

Photo by Calton via Wikimedia Commons

In light of a few recent horrific crimes committed by people who found their victims through Craigslist, police departments are now creating safe spaces for the sites’ buyers, sellers, and swappers. According to NPR, Craigslist revised its “personal safety” guidelines this week, recommending that users make their “high-value exchanges” at local police stations. NPR spoke to Hartford, Connecticut Chief of Detectives Brian Foley, whose department is offering a parking lot outside the police station as an IRL trading post for online transactors. Appropriately, they call the project “Operation Safe Lot.”

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For decades, commenters on all things wrong with black America have pointed with an enmity similar to that of Michael Dunn to the negative influence of hip hop culture. From C. Delores Tucker to Bill Cosby to Bill O'Reilly, many decry that hip hop draws its listeners to moral depravity, lawlessness, early death. The killing, ostensibly over music, of Jordan Davis proved these critics right. Michael Dunn shot right through the music, and hit Davis' liver, lung, and aorta.

Social justice communities must be careful not to replicate the blame game endemic of the culture wars. We should mourn for Jordan Davis, and our anger should be placed on the system that facilitated Michael Dunn.

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The Depressing Rise of People Robbing Banks to Pay the Bills

Bank robberies are on the rise, but gone are the glamorous thieves of old. Today, people are just trying to pay their rent.


Despite inflation decreasing their value, bank robberies are on the rise in the United States. According to the FBI, in the third quarter of 2010, banks reported 1,325 bank robberies, burglaries, or other larcenies, an increase of more than 200 crimes from the same quarter in 2009. America isn't the easiest place to succeed financially these days, a predicament that's finding more and more people doing desperate things to obtain money. Robbing banks is nothing new, of course; it's been a popular crime for anyone looking to get quick cash practically since America began. But the face and nature of robbers is changing. These days, the once glamorous sheen of bank robberies is wearing away, exposing a far sadder and ugly reality: Today's bank robbers are just trying to keep their heads above water.

Bonnie and Clyde, Pretty Boy Floyd, Baby Face Nelson—time was that bank robbers had cool names and widespread celebrity. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Jesse James, and John Dillinger were even the subjects of big, fawning Hollywood films glorifying their thievery. But times have changed.

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