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Harvard’s Drastic Decision

Harvard’s Drastic DecisionIn March, Kyle Kashuv got the news he’d been waiting for: He’d been admitted to Harvard. The Parkland-shooting survivor, who had become a conservative rising star, had spent his senior year as a school-safety and gun-rights activist, traveling the country as the high-school outreach director for the right-wing group Turning Point USA. He planned to take a gap year before enrolling in the fall of 2020. But today Kashuv tweeted that Harvard had rescinded its offer, in an apparent response to racist messages he had written years earlier.The first sign of trouble came in mid-May, when Kashuv announced that he would be leaving Turning Point USA. Hours later, screenshots began to surface on Twitter. In text messages and Google Docs from when he was 16, Kashuv allegedly used the N-word repeatedly, and made other racist, anti-Semitic, and crass remarks. In one of the messages, Kashuv allegedly wrote, “like…

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Court Rules Police Officer Who Shot 10-Year-Old Is Protected by Qualified Immunity

Court Rules Police Officer Who Shot 10-Year-Old Is Protected by Qualified ImmunityA woman whose 10-year-old child was shot by a police officer will receive no compensation for her child’s medical bills after a federal court ruled last week in Corbitt v. Vickers that the officer was protected by qualified immunity. In 2014 a criminal suspect named Christopher Barnett entered Amy Corbitt’s front yard where a group of children were also playing. The police soon followed in pursuit of Barnett. The officers held Barnett and the children at gunpoint, ordering them all to get on the ground. All complied, including Barnett, who was apprehended without incident. But Bruce, the Corbitt family dog, sauntered over to Coffee County, Georgia, Deputy Sheriff Matthew Vickers, who attempted to shoot the animal, regardless of the fact that “no one appeared threatened by [Bruce],” as the 11th Circuit put it. Vickers missed. The dog briefly retreated, then reappeared, prompting…

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Sony’s new A7R IV camera is a 61 MP full-frame mirrorless beast

Sony’s new A7R IV camera is a 61 MP full-frame mirrorless beastSony unveiled the latest in its line of interchangeable lens mirrorless cameras on Tuesday, debuting the A7R IV, its top-of-the-line full-frame digital shooter aimed at pros. The new camera packs a walloping 61-megapixel sensor, and will retail for $3,500 when it goes on sale this September. The camera’s image resolution is a “world first” for a 35mm equivalent full-frame digital sensor, Sony notes, and that’s not where the improvements on this successor to the wildly popular A7R III ends: The A7R IV also has 10fps rapid shooting with continuous autofocus and autoexposure tracking capabilities; 567 phase-detect autofocus points that cover 74% of the frame; real-time eye autofocus tracking for stills and movies, which can handle both human and animal subjects; 4K movie recording without any pixel binning and with S-Log 2/3 support for editing (although without a 60p mode,…

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Philadelphia D.A. Larry Krasner Argues PA Death Penalty Is Unconstitutional

Philadelphia D.A. Larry Krasner Argues PA Death Penalty Is UnconstitutionalA petition before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court by two death row inmates could upend Pennsylvania’s dysfunctional death penalty, and it has one extremely unusual supporter: the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office. In a legal brief filed Monday night in support of the petition, Philadelphia D.A. Larry Krasner, who ran for office promising to never pursue a death sentence, argues Pennsylvania’s death penalty is applied unreliably and arbitrarily, violating the state constitution’s ban on cruel punishment. To reach its conclusions, the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office reviewed every case where a Philadelphia defendant received a death sentence between 1978 and 2017. The study found that 72 percent of those 155 sentences were ultimately overturned—more than half of them for ineffective legal assistance. “Where nearly three out of every four death sentences have been overturned—after years of litigation at significant taxpayer expense—there can be no…

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Wash. Post overstates the NRA’s ability to influence legislation and elections

Wash. Post overstates the NRA’s ability to influence legislation and electionsMelissa Joskow / Media Matters The Washington Post undeservedly credited the National Rifle Association with blocking a package of gun safety proposals in the Virginia General Assembly to set up a contrast with the massive turmoil the gun group is currently experiencing. In doing so, the paper baselessly overstated the NRA’s power to influence the legislative process and elections in Virginia.  In fact, the primary reason Virginia’s GOP-controlled legislature is in a position to vote down gun safety laws and other progressive proposals is racist and partisan gerrymandering implemented by the state’s Republican lawmakers.  On July 12, the General Assembly’s GOP leadership adjourned just 90 minutes into a special session called by Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam to vote on several gun safety proposals. Northam had called the session in the wake of a May 31 mass shooting in Virginia Beach…

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