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This could be the most pathetic proposal to prevent school shootings to date

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Florida’s Broward school district, which oversees the Parkland school where a former student murdered 17 people in February, has announced it has a new plan to keep its schools safe. When students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High return from spring break next week, they’ll be required to ditch their regular Jansports and carry their books and supplies in school-issued, transparent backpacks, the Miami Herald reports.

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According to the Herald, “Students will also be required to wear identification badges at all times and could soon see metal detectors installed.” The new safety measures are presumably intended to prevent copycat shootings. “While we can’t change the heartbreaking and senseless act of violence at Marjory Stoneman Douglas, by working together, we can change the future,” superintendent Robert Runcie wrote in a letter to parents. “All students deserve safe schools.”

That’s not all the extra security MSD will receive. On Wednesday, Florida Gov. Rick Scott offered to send a squad of state troopers to guard the high school beginning next week. School administrators accepted the offer.

The district’s attempts to keep students safe are commendable, but telling kids to wear see-through backpacks is just the latest in a growing list of ridiculous ideas that have been proposed in the wake of the mass shooting. Gun rights advocates have suggested arming teachers and transforming public schools into virtual prisons rather than implement effective gun control legislation.

The school district’s new safety policies put even more pressure on a student body already suffering from post-traumatic stress. Any MSD student hoping for something approaching a return to normalcy after February’s massacre and ensuing media swarm may find it hard to come by in a sea of clear backpacks and armed stated troopers patrolling the hallways. AlterNet posted a piece Wednesday about the “Walk Up Not Out” movement, which unfairly puts the onus on teens to prevent school violence by urging them to befriend loner, would-be shooters. Here’s yet another example of good intentions implemented with no consideration of long-term goals.

When will we do the tough work of addressing the true causes of gun violence—violent paradigms of masculinity, racism, misogyny, and easy access to military-grade weapons—instead of proposing quick-fix solutions?

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There’s no respite from Trump’s vindictiveness and foolishness

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As we know, even in the midst of a national emergency, Donald Trump could find time and bandwidth to continue his retribution campaign.

He dismissed Michael Atkinson, the inspector general for the intelligence agencies, for doing “a terrible job,” satisfying his own thirst for vengeance for anyone who actually adhered to law and practice over blind loyalty to Trump himself. Indeed, asked about it the next day, Trump underscored his action by saying, Atkinson “was no Trump supporter, that I can tell you.”

It was an act that we once would have labeled corruption, by Democrats and Republicans – that is using the office for personal purposes – if Congress and too many Americans had not since become inured by so many like instances.

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This is how Taiwan and South Korea bucked the global lockdown trend

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As the coronavirus pandemic sparks global lockdowns, life has continued comparatively unhindered in places like Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong after their governments and citizens took decisive early action against the unfolding crisis.

At first glance Taiwan looks like an ideal candidate for the coronavirus. The island of 23 million lies just 180 kilometres (110 miles) off mainland China.

Yet nearly 100 days in, Taiwan has just 376 confirmed cases and five fatalities while restaurants, bars, schools, universities and offices remain open.

The government of President Tsai Ing-wen, whose deputy is an epidemiologist, made tough decisions while the crisis was nascent to stave off the kind of pain now convulsing much of the rest of the world.

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Republican ex-lawmaker with coronavirus scolds Wisconsin GOP for forcing voters to risk their health

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On CNN Tuesday, former Rep. Charlie Dent (R-PA), who is himself dealing with a bout of COVID-19, chastised the Wisconsin GOP for doing everything in their power to block the state elections from being moved — and forcing many voters to stand in line and risk exposure to the virus to cast their ballot.

"I have to tell you, here in Pennsylvania we have a Democratic governor and Republican legislature," Dent told host Don Lemon. "They postponed the election here from April 28 until June 2. Without any controversy. Everybody agreed it was the right thing to do and they moved on. I'm surprised Wisconsin took this risk, knowing they don't have to."

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