Ugly Patterns and Unseemly Practices

To the Editor:

Under federal law, the U.S. Department of Justice is charged with conducting a “pattern-or-practice investigation” when there is evidence of persistent biased or improper policing, with excessive use of force or other unconstitutional practices by law enforcement. A federal pattern-or-practice investigation is conducted in addition to any criminal charges or other action taken by state and local authorities.

The recent killing of an unarmed, handcuffed black man by a white Minneapolis police officer who knelt on the man’s neck for eight minutes while the man said he couldn’t breathe and three white officers looked on, is apparently just the latest in a series of improper actions by that police department. Not only had the officer himself been disciplined in the past, there is evidence that the department had embraced a biased “warrior” ethos.

The problem in our country today is that the Justice Department itself, and the White House, are led by individuals who have expressed biased views. The President has not only encouraged and threatened use of force, and commented that white supremacists were “very good people,” he has suggested that African-American members of Congress (U.S. citizens) “go back to the countries they came from.”

With such persons in charge, it is unlikely that the Federal government will step in to correct biased or improper practices. It is our duty as voters to remove such officials from their positions of responsibility—if indeed we are allowed to vote this November.

Don Nolte

Exeter N.H.


For forty years, America could look to John Mitchell as the worst Attorney General imaginable. Now, Trump and Barr have even robbed us of that.

The Editor

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