The war on drugs has been going on for decades. In that time, the government has taken its job very seriously. Sometimes police at state and federal levels push what many would argue are the bounds of enforcement to a point where they raise questions about whether rights have been infringed.
White-collar crime is a phrase everyone is probably familiar with. When you hear it, you likely call to mind a person in a suit, white shirt and tie doing something illegal in connection with business in order to boost profits.
This past year, Minnesota joined the ranks of many states in acknowledging that there are times when individuals charged with crimes are wrongfully convicted. In response to that reality, the state passed a law that now makes it possible for those who can show that their conviction was in error to receive monetary compensation for the wrong they have suffered.
Minnesota is not as homogenous as it was just a few decades ago. Events around the world -- the Vietnam War, unrest in Somalia and in other parts of Africa -- have all had the effect of spurring significant migration to our region.
The rule of law in Minnesota and the rest of the United States is based on the idea that you are presumed innocent unless and until you are found guilty of a criminal charge. The presumption of innocence is an important underpinning to individual freedom, but as many readers likely know, just because the standard exists doesn't mean it is always followed.