Friday, March 9, 2012

  • U.S. Faces Challenge to "Drug War" as Latin American Countries Mull Decriminalization, Legalization

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    As Vice President Joe Biden wraps up a trip to Central America insisting the drug war must continue, a growing number of Latin American leaders are calling for the decriminalization or legalization of drugs. "This debate now is no longer going to be suppressed," says Ethan Nadelmann, founder and executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance. "Once U.S. officials are obliged to participate in the discussion and to do it in a real way, the smartest among them know there’s no way to defend the current U.S. strategy." [includes rush transcript]

  • "Beautiful Souls": Eyal Press on the Whistleblowers Who Risk All to "Heed the Voice of Conscience"

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    From corporate whistleblowers to Army refuseniks, a new book, "Beautiful Souls: Saying No, Breaking Ranks, and Heeding the Voice of Conscience in Dark Times," explores what compels ordinary people to defy the sway of authority and convention for the greater good. "I feel like we have two very different discourses about whistleblowers in this country," says the book’s author, Eyal Press. "On the one hand, when you see them cast in Hollywood movies, they’re invariably heroes, played by leading actors and actresses, and everybody salutes them... On the other hand, when we have whistleblowers actually speaking up in real time, the response is very different." [includes rush transcript]

  • "El Librotraficante" Tony Diaz Defies Ethnic Studies Book Ban with Caravan to Arizona

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    Self-described book smuggler Tony Diaz, nicknamed "El Libro-Traficante," is set to launch a small caravan to bring carloads of controversial books into Arizona that were recently banned by public school officials in Tucson after the city suspended its acclaimed Mexican American Studies program due to a state ban on the teaching of ethnic studies. "When Arizona tried to erase our history, we decided to make more," Diaz says. "We’ve unleashed this informal network that’s galvanized into a national movement... People are forming groups to read the protested books, to read the books that have been confiscated. They’ve actually brought so much attention to our community that I think right now we really are on the verge of a Latino Renaissance." [includes rush transcript]

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