Alabama Senate Judiciary Committee holds hearing on prison reform

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Wednesday, March 1, 2017, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a public hearing on Governor Robert Bentley’s controversial plan to borrow $800 millions in bonds in order to build four massive new prisons. Senate Bill 70 is being sponsored in the Senate by Senator Cam Ward (R-Alabaster).

Sen. Ward said, “I have committed my life to prison reform over the last few years.”

Ward said that you can not operate a 21st century prison system with buildings built in the mid 20th century and offer the services that we need. There are ten amendments in the bill of rights. The 8th amendment to the Constitution is there just like the second and we have to follow it. We are going to build facilities at some point, whether we do it on our own or we are forced to do it by a federal judge.
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Conservatives Rally Against Data Collection Bills

By Brandon Moseley

The legislature has returned for another session and some GOP legislators are once again pushing a longitudinal data collection scheme. Once again the primary opponents of this grand scheme are fellow Republicans. On Thursday, February 23 Alabama Eagle Forum led a conservative rally in opposition to the longitudinal data bills, House Bill 97 and Senate Bill 153.

State Auditor Jim Zeigler (R) read a statement from his wife, state school board member Jackie Zeigler (R) vowing to oppose the data collection.
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How much is your child’s privacy worth?

By Deborah Love

Justice Brandeis wrote, “the right to privacy is the right to be left alone.” Privacy is an essential aspect of a free society. Yet Representative Collins is once again pushing a State longitudinal database bill in the Alabama Legislature. A State longitudinal database is a centrally controlled database which collects and stores personally identifiable information on students. This centrally controlled database will track students throughout their lives and continuously consolidate personal data between multiple State agencies. While the bill has been renamed “Answers” this year it provides few. Instead it will give broad powers to what will be a newly created agency and advisory board with no accountability. (pg. 13)
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Why is the First Amendment the Greatest Threat to Terrorism?

Deborah Love, Executive Director
Eagle Forum of Alabama

In the wake of the terror attack this weekend in Orlando, our hearts go out to the family and friends who lost their loved ones. Our prayers and thoughts will continue to remain with those injured as well as their family and friends. The facts show that this was an act of terrorism, an act of intolerance and an act of disgusting violence. What should unite all of us all no matter what our perspectives or backgrounds may be is our deep appreciation for freedom, and especially, our love and appreciation for the First Amendment. I believe the First Amendment is the greatest threat to terrorism – not force. The First Amendment protects the right of the Muslim to worship and the right of citizens to criticize the violence that has accompanied Islam. It protects an individual’s right to protest the treatment of those in LGBT community or the right of a Conservative to present their perspective on marriage and family. Many are calling for stricter measures on guns, hate crime laws or restrictions on civil liberties as a response to the attack. When emotions run high, there is a natural reaction to act boldly. However, the first hasty suggestions typically are ill-suited to either assuaging the pain at the loss of our fellow Americans, or ensuring that such an incident never happens again.
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