Wilbert Rideau in The New York Times on ending prisoner solitary confinement The massive scale of California prisoners' 30,000-strong hunger strike against solitary confinement sounds a familiar chord with Rideau. "I know something about solitary confinement, because I’ve been there. I spent a total of 12 years in various solitary confinement cells," Rideau writes. "And I can tell you that isolating a human being for years in a barren cell the size of a small bathroom is the cruelest thing you can do to a person." Using solitary for dangerous and violent prisoners makes sense, but not as general punishment for any infraction, as the strikes protest. "And if prison officials actually listened to inmates, they would find that their demands are often reasonable." Former prison worker, prominent reform activist, and Boston Magazine writer Jean Trounstine tweets that it's a "worthy op-ed." And NBC News' Ali Azhar-Fateh writes "Excellent point! Why should we be concerned about the inhumane conditions of prolonged solitary confinement."
Jorge Ramos in Univision on a Hispanic move away from Republicans "Here is a political no-brainer," Ramos writes in a copy of his article translated from Spanish. "If Republicans in the House of Representatives vote against the immigration reform legislation ... they will lose the presidential election in 2016." George W. Bush needed Hispanics in Florida to be elected, and neither Romney nor the next Republican candidate can do so without Hispanic support, he argues. If Boehner and Republicans withhold a House vote on the legislation, "how many years will they have to wait for Hispanic voters to forgive them?" In NBC News, a group of journalists led by Chuck Todd and Mark Murray write that "it could leave a long-term mark." And this warning shot is not from just any old commentator: "Jorge Ramos is to the Latino community today what Walter Cronkite used to be in U.S. media," writes Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas.