I GOT INTO TOWN JUST AFTER SUNSET. The lights were on at a place called the Brick House Grill, and if you were out on South Main Street on a Friday night in February, chances are, that’s where you were going. So I went in, too.
I took a seat at the bar. A man two stools over from me struck up a conversation. I told him I was a journalist from Chicago and asked him to tell me about this town. “You know how this town is called Anna?” he started. “That’s for ‘Ain’t No Niggers Allowed.’” He laughed, shook his head and took a sip of his beer.
Let us be grateful for small mercies. Thank you Twitter for banning political advertising. Given that such advertising is by its nature biased, tendentious and hard to check, Twitter is behaving as a good publisher should. Politicians may make full use of its outlet. That is democracy. But as the organisation’s chief, Jack Dorsey, points out, with social media awash in “micro-targeting, deepfakes, manipulated videos and misinformation”, those who control it should keep it as clean as possible. Money may not buy truth, but it should not drown fairness.
What is the First Amendment for? I ask my students this every year. Every year, several people quickly respond that the First Amendment guarantees Americans the right to speak without restriction. True, I say, but what is it for?
The government has again admitted breaching a court order banning arms sales to Saudi Arabia over concerns they could be used in the Yemen war.
International trade secretary Liz Truss faced calls to resign for the second time in 10 days after she revealed her department had granted a third unlawful license relating for military equipment that could be used in a war fuelling “the world’s worst humanitarian crisis”.
Labour MEP Julie Ward told The Independent: “The Brexit Party quite clearly treat being elected as an MEP as a part time role and are not interested in serving their constituents in the European Parliament. They are not a political party but rather a company, and these figures expose that. While railing against the ‘elite” they are actually part of the 1%.”