This Should Go Without Saying, But: Prosecutors, It’s Not OK to Photograph a Boy’s Erect Penis

Today’s apparent insanity: A sexting prosecution in Manassas City reportedly gone off the rails. According to Tom Jackman in the Washington Post, the police there are trying to serve a wildly inappropriate warrant on a 17-year-old accused of sending a pornographic video of himself to his 15-year-old girlfriend. “Prince William County prosecutors want to take a photo of his erect penis, possibly forcing the teen to become erect by taking him to a hospital and giving him an injection, the teen’s lawyers said.”


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The “You’re a Facebook Lab Rat” Edition

Become a fan of the Political Gabfest on Facebook. We post to the Facebook page throughout the week, so keep the conversation going by joining us there. Or follow us @SlateGabfest!…
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Supreme Court Breakfast Table

That was fast. Hobby Lobby jumped from the pages of a Supreme Court opinion into political talking points in a nanosecond. On the Republican side, Sen. Ted Cruz hailed the ruling for affirming that Americans “have a right to live and work in accordance to their conscience.” (American employers, not American employees, I have to add.) For the Democrats, Sen. Patty Murray made a promise: “Since the Supreme Court decided it will not protect women’s access to health care, I will,” she said, vowing that she will figure out how to cover the birth control of the women affected by the court’s decision.


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Supreme Court Breakfast Table

I’m trying to hold fast to the fact that this is It Could Be Worse Day at the Supreme Court. Unions survived, and while Hobby Lobby and lots of (all?) for-profit companies now have religious rights they never had before, at least the court thinks they still have to provide insurance coverage that pays for vaccinations and blood transfusions. It’s only birth control that corporations can cross off the list, for a reason that even sounds benign: Since the Obama administration already accommodates churches and some religious groups that object to paying for certain kinds of birth control, they can just accommodate Hobby Lobby, too. No sincere-belief harm, no IUD foul.


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Supreme Court Breakfast Table

The Supreme Court’s conservatives didn’t kill off unions this morning. But they took a swipe that will leave labor reeling and worrying—a lot—about the next case, or the one after that. Today’s decision in Harris v. Quinn is also bad for people with disabilities and the workers who care for them at home and get paid through government programs like Medicaid.


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