Op-Ed

Sick and Shrouded in Secrecy: Alabama’s Contract to Gas Humans to Death

By Stephen A. Cooper For $25,000, Alabama’s Attorney General Steve Marshall has contracted with Tennessee company “FDR Safety,” to assist Alabama in developing a barbaric new protocol – ...

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Op-Ed: If You Live In Oceanside, You Can Help Improve Our Government

Represent Oceanside (RO) is a grass-roots group of your fellow residents working to make Oceanside government ethical, transparent, and responsive to citizens’ input.  We are non-partisan and welcome ...

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Op-Ed: Judge Marks and Mass Incarceration in the Middle District of Alabama

By Stephen Cooper In 2016, together with former colleague Assistant Federal Public Defender Donnie W. Bethel, I wrote, “[p]eople of all persuasions, political parties, and philosophies have awakened ...

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The Riehl World: Waiting for the Big One

By Richard Riehl When we moved to California, Karen and I we were not alarmed by the occasional rattling of windows and coffee cups and swaying of chandeliers. ...

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Abolishing the Death Penalty Requires Morality

By Stephen A. Cooper In “How to Convince Americans to Abolish the Death Penalty,” Amherst College Professor Austin Sarat asserts “important lessons about how abolitionists can be successful ...

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“Wheel! Of! Fortune!” (A Vegas Story)

By Stephen A. Cooper An unnaturally tan woman with metallic blond hair and garish makeup has hit a bonus. Automated applause, bells, whistles, whoops, and all manner of ...

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Op-Ed: My Unforgettable College Stabbings (Reacting to Violence: A Personal History)

By Stephen Cooper Violence can and does occur anywhere at any time to anyone. While our current mass shooting epidemic has thrust this fact of being alive into ...

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Op-Ed: Julius Jones’s Hail Mary to Avoid a 21st-Century-Style Lynching

By Stephen Cooper Recently, by filing a petition for certiorari in the Supreme Court of the United States, Julius Jones, a black man condemned to death in Oklahoma, threw ...

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Op-Ed: Why Twitter brings out my worst self (and perhaps yours)

By Stephen Cooper As a full-time freelance writer – having transitioned from law practice at midlife, accursed with all the selfish, self-doubting sensibilities that kind of crisis entails – Twitter ...

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Op-Ed: Keith Tharpe and the Death Penalty’s Racist Roots

By Stephen Cooper Recently, the appalling spectacle of a black man condemned by a Georgia jury, a jury that included a racist bigot, reentered the American consciousness; if ...

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Op-Ed: Supreme Court Screw-Up Sullies U.S. Constitution

By Stephen Cooper Giving a speech at Georgetown University, late Justice William J. Brennan, Jr., said: “[T]he Constitution is a sublime oration on the dignity of man.” However, ...

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Op-Ed: Alabama Executions: Strictly a Christian Affair

By Stephen Cooper Over 60 years ago, Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren wrote that “[t]he basic concept underlying the Eighth Amendment is nothing less than the dignity ...

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Op-Ed: How Congress Listens; why they fail

By John Ruffu Our free speech when we march on DC or on our local streets holding signs is “meaningless free speech” when our representative is “shut out” ...

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Op-Ed: Candidates Vie for Appointment to Oceanside City Council

North County’s largest city is still reeling from the results of the recent Midterm General Election. Newly created council districts lead to a face-off between incumbent Council-members in ...

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Op-Ed: When will journalism grapple with the ethics of interviewing mentally ill arrestees?

By Stephen A. Cooper When, in a December 2016 column for The Hill, I accused the New York Times, the venerable “Gray Lady” of American journalism, of violating basic journalistic ethics in ...

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