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Reason

Reason July 2017

Reason is the monthly print magazine of "free minds and free markets." It covers politics, culture, and ideas through a provocative mix of news, analysis, commentary, and reviews. Reason provides a refreshing alternative to right-wing and left-wing opinion magazines by making a principled case for liberty and individual choice in all areas of human activity.

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United States
Idioma:
English
Editor:
Reason Magazine
Periodicitat:
Monthly
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6 min.
armless droid calls cops after being assaulted by drunken man

IT WAS 8:15 p.m. and Jason Sylvain was drunk. When the 41-year-old man encountered Knightscope’s 300-pound K5 security droid doing laps in the company’s Mountain View parking lot, things didn’t go well—for either of them. The large, pyramidal robot can’t have been easy to overturn. But Sylvain, whom a police spokesperson later described as “confused, [with] red, glassy eyes and a strong odor of alcohol emit[ting] from him,” persevered. Upon finding itself topsy-turvy, the unarmed bot did what anyone would do: It called the cops and hollered for help. In response to the K5’s siren, Knightscope’s vice president of marketing, Stacy Stevens, rushed out of the company’s HQ and nabbed the assailant. Stevens later told CNET that the sloshed Sylvain “claimed to be an engineer that wanted to ‘test’ the security robots.”…

2 min.
why did a conservative judge uphold an assault weapons ban?

IN FEBRUARY, THE U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit dealt gun rights advocates a bitter defeat. In Kolbe v. Hogan, it upheld a Maryland law that bans “assault weapons” and detachable large-capacity magazines, holding that the Second Amendment offers no impediment to such prohibitory legislation. Among the judges who joined the 10–4 decision was J. Harvie Wilkinson III, who during the George W. Bush administration was rumored to be on the president’s shortlist of Supreme Court candidates. What led a respected conservative judge to uphold a sweeping gun control law? In addition to joining the majority opinion, Wilkinson filed a separate concurrence in which he explained his thinking. The matter boiled down to the core principle of judicial deference, he wrote: “It is altogether fair to argue that the…

2 min.
the search for a place to toke up

DENVER HAS A bunch of businesses where you can legally buy marijuana but none where you can legally use it. That is supposed to change under a local ballot initiative approved by voters last fall. But a statewide solution to Colorado’s cannabis consumption conundrum has been derailed by fears of a federal crackdown. Amendment 64, the 2012 ballot initiative that made Colorado the first state to legalize marijuana for recreational use, allows adults 21 and older to use it at home. But Amendment 64 does not apply to “consumption that is conducted openly and publicly,” which is a petty offense punishable by a $100 fine. Because the meaning of “openly and publicly” is a matter of dispute, finding places to enjoy the marijuana that has been sold by state- licensed retailers…

5 min.
your money or your life

THE PRODUCT WAS perfectly legal. Many prominent clergymen endorsed it, including celebrity preacher Henry Ward Beecher, brother of Uncle Tom’s Cabin author Harriet Beecher Stowe. The Pennsylvania House declared in 1811 that it “would be highly beneficial to many descriptions of citizens throughout the state.” The need was clear, and the businesses that sold it were untainted by scandal, bankruptcy, or fraud. They delivered what they promised. But in the early 19th century, Americans just wouldn’t buy life insurance. The problem wasn’t mere procrastination. Many people deemed the very idea immoral. “Has a man the right to make the continuance of his life the basis of a bargain? Is it not turning a very solemn thing into a mere commercial transaction?” wrote a typical critic. Religious tra ditionalists believed they should trust…

2 min.
uber, but for school buses

COULD RIDE-SHARING BECOME a widespread replacement for traditional modes of school transportation? In March, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos praised Denver’s school district for providing transportation to underserved students attending both traditional public and charter schools. The program, called the Success Express, helps bus students to schools they’re enrolled in outside their typical residential assignment areas, helping them exercise more choices in where to attend. But in many communities, students aren’t so lucky. In February, a report from the Urban Institute tracked how transportation issues undercut the promise of school choice in some of the places with the most educational options for students. Several cities wellknown for school choice, including Denver, still face gaps in their transportation infrastructure, according to the report. Programs like the Success Express run into problems coordinating with…

3 min.
the democrats’ dullard dynasty

FUNDAMENTALS SUGGEST THAT this should be a golden moment for the Democratic Party. The first special congressional elections since President Donald Trump settled into the Oval Office have provided an evidentiary taste: In Kansas on April 11, Republican Ron Estes won by seven percentage points in a district Trump carried by 27. In Georgia on April 18, Democratic newcomer Jon Ossoff stomped his nearest Republican rival, Karen Handel, 48.1–19.8 percent, in a district Trump won by a single percentage point. That race now graduates to a June 20 runoff, which is projected to be close, but Ossoff has already overperformed expectations. The generic congressional ballot average— that is, who voters favor between a standard-issue Republican or a typical Democrat—was as of mid-April underwater for the gop by six percentage points. If…