ProPublica takes a look at the history and use of flashbang grenades by police which have maimed, seriously injured or killed 50 Americans since 2000.
Top of the Alty World
"Hotter Than Lava: Every day, cops toss dangerous military-style grenades during raids, with little oversight and horrifying results."—ProPublica
Advocates worry that a plan to "brand" certain neighborhoods in Detroit will further divide and isolate marginalized communities.—Metro Times
With the new year a host of new green regulations have gone into effect meaning increased fracking reporting, more spacious chicken cages and other reforms.—High Country News
President Barack Obama is expected to propose new data security initiatives to protect hack victims and to keep companies from exploiting the data they collect on students.—EnGadget
Top of Alty Utah
A petition is advancing to reduce speed limits along the Wasatch Front for the sake of air quality.—Utah Political Capitol
Salt Lake City has been named as one of the "queerest" cities in America.—Q Salt Lake
Salt Lake Tribune cartoonist Pat Bagley talks about Utah, Paris, and free expression.—Salt Lake City Weekly
Salt Lake City's Community Writing Center teaches people how to turn their political rants into persuasive arguments for change.—Salt Lake City Weekly
Bob Aagard double checks the numbers presented by Parents for Choice in Education who at a recent conference said that teachers in the Nebo School District get 120 days of paid vacation a year.
In the state of Utah, we require students to be enrolled in school 180 days a year. 261 working days minus the 180 school days leaves us with 81 days. Which means that for teachers to have “120 paid vacation days” a year, they would have to miss 39 days of school a year, or roughly one classroom day a week. It’s been a while since I was in school, but I doubt kids have a substitute once a week.—Utah Politico Hub
The Long View
City Weekly looks at the perilous climb in domestic-violence fatalities concurring with dwindling state funds for treatment and prevention.
But domestic violence is a quiet plague in Utah. Between 2009 and 2011, more people were killed in domestic-violence-related issues than other types of homicides. According to 2010 figures from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, one in three Utah women will face rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime, and once every 33 days, on average, there is one death related to intimate-partner violence.
These deaths are often the culmination of long-time violence that, in many cases, goes unreported.
When it is reported, victims face a fractured, overburdened system made up of law enforcement, shelters, justice courts and treatment providers. And advocates say that anyone who looks at this system will see that change is sorely needed.
Police officers need more training, and shelters are always full; last year they served as many people, approximately 3,000, as they turned away. The courts struggle to hold perpetrators accountable—a process partially undermined, some say, by the ineffectiveness of offender treatment, which neither is standardized nor has much oversight.—Salt Lake City Weekly