Elections Matter, Part 3,749First, a look back at the state of things under the previous administration.
6 years ago I wrote about the Bush administration's evisceration of the Civil Rights Division. I quoted from a Washington Post article detailing the damage:
....prosecutions for the kinds of racial and gender discrimination crimes traditionally handled by the division have declined 40 percent over the past five years, according to department statistics. Dozens of lawyers find themselves handling appeals of deportation orders and other immigration matters instead of civil rights cases....That's the historical context.
The Bush administration has filed only three lawsuits -- all of them this year -- under the section of the Voting Rights Act that prohibits discrimination against minority voters, and none of them involves discrimination against blacks. The initial case was the Justice Department's first reverse-discrimination lawsuit, accusing a majority-black county in Mississippi of discriminating against white voters. [emphasis added]
Now cut to the present. The DOJ is demonstrating (in both words and action) that voting rights are again a priority. They have also made a priority of investigating police misconduct, including high-profile cases in East Haven and New Orleans.
And now they're looking into the killing of Trayvon Martin.
I'm pretty sure this means Greenwald will never again mention the Trayvon Martin case (he did tweet about it a couple times before the DOJ announcement, although he never mentioned it on his blog). For anyone who genuinely cares about civil liberties, though, this--yesterday's decision, and the whole turnaround of the Civil Rights Division--is extremely good news.
Elections matter. That is all.