Magazine May 15, 2017, Issue

Let the Police Police

New York Police Department officers stand guard near Port Authority Bus Terminal, Manhattan, New York. (Amr Alfiky/Reuters)
So says Jeff Sessions, but some big-city chiefs disagree

Federal consent decrees — agreements between the federal government and a local agency to change how that agency operates — are burdensome, costly, and rarely justified. You would think, then, that when Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced in a memo at the end of March that he was reviewing police consent decrees, politicians and police chiefs in the affected cities would have let out a glad cheer. Instead, Sessions’s announcement produced a bizarre spectacle: Local officials proudly proclaimed themselves unable to function in the absence of federal control. Therein lies a tale about law enforcement in the Black Lives Matter

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Acts of Undermining

Set in the summer and early autumn of 1949, “Deconstruction” reimagines the relationship between Paul de Man, newly arrived in New York City from Belgium, and novelist-critic Mary McCarthy.


Politics & Policy


Rock’s Other Pioneer I have only one quarrel with Andrew Cline’s “Founding Rocker” (April 17). There is another iconic rocker who should also be considered — Little Richard, circa 1955, with ...
Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ In Trump’s first 100 days, “Tough on China” became “Tough on Canada.” Now that’s tough. ‐Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign, by Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, is gripping reading, ...
Politics & Policy


LARKINESQUE The trees have shed their leaves at last, Like something over — done and said. How shall their settled piles be read Now that fall is dead and past? Perhaps like sibyl’s words that ...


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