Adam Serwer

Adam Serwer is a writing fellow at The American Prospect and a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. He also blogs at Jack and Jill Politics and has written for The Village Voice, The Washington Post, The Root, and the Daily News.

Recent Articles

GOP Candidates Pledge To Abolish Marriage Equality In D.C.

Texas Governor Rick Perry has joined the other two top-tier Republican presidential candidates, Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney and Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann, in signing the National Organization for Marriage's Pledge to "appoint a presidential commission to investigate harassment of traditional marriage supporters," support an anti-marriage-equality amendment to the Constitution, and overturn same-sex marriage in the District so it can be put to a citywide referendum in defiance of local human-rights laws. The "investigate harassment of traditional marriage supporters" plank comes from the difficulty NOM has had keeping its donors secret. See, NOM believes, like Sarah Palin, that the First Amendment gives them the freedom to say what they want without criticism. The Supreme Court ruled 8-1 against NOM's efforts to keep their donors anonymous, with Justice Antonin Scalia writing that "there are laws against threats and intimidation; and harsh criticism, short...

Alleged Oregon Arsonist On "Secret Muslims" And "Christian Warriors"

The indictment of Cody Crawford, who allegedly attempted to burn down a mosque in Oregon, is notable for a few reasons beyond the fact of the alleged crime itself. Crawford is alleged to have targeted the mosque in part because he recognized Mohamud Osman Mohamud, who was caught and charged in an FBI sting plot to bomb a Portland Christmas-tree-lighting ceremony, as one of the congregants. Crawford seems to be the second instance we've seen of an alleged act of anti-Muslim terrorism being perpetrated on ideological grounds. As noted yesterday, Crawford told an officer while being arrested that "you look like Obama. You are a Muslim like him. Jihad goes both ways. Christians can jihad too." But the indictment offers more details: Crawford also made statements about Officer Macartney being Muslim and not a Christian like him (Crawford) and therefore, Crawford said that Officer Macartney was "going to burn in Hell like other Muslims." Crawford stated that Officer Macartney could never be...

Unpossible: Racism Against Latinos In Arizona

That's the basic conclusion of a challenge to the Voting Rights Act by the state of Arizona, which is seeking to overturn the law as unconstitutional. Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act mandates that certain jurisdictions with a history of racial problems have their election changes subject to "preclearance" by the Justice Department. The lawsuit may be unique in its frank use of Tenth Amendment language to argue implicitly that the VRA was unconstitutional even when it was first passed by Congress, when it was meant to ensure that black people were able to excercize their right to vote. The lawsuit declares that "such heavy handed intrusion on state sovereignty exceeds Congress’s authority under the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments." So even when black people were being murdered in the South for trying to exercise their right to vote, the Voting Rights Act was an unconstitutional infringement on "states' rights." The last challenge to Section 5 didn't go so far -- it merely...

You Can't Believe Your Eyes

Eyewitness misidentification is a leading factor in wrongful convictions -- according to the Innocence Project, more than 75 percent of DNA exonerations involved cases of eyewitness misidentification. In what the Innocence Project called a landmark ruling earlier this week, New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart J. Rabner wrote a long opinion holding that the legal standards for admissibility of eyewitness evidence should be modified. The ruling itself is an incredibly compelling recap of the relevant science on memory and the problems with eyewitness testimony over the past 30 years. Until now, admissibility has generally hinged on a two-prong test: If the court decides that the identification took place under "suggestive" circumstances, it must then decide, based on five factors, whether the evidence is reliable. 1) the “opportunity of the witness to view the criminal at the time of the crime”; (2) “the witness’s degree of attention”; (3) “...


Ghadafi loves Condi. Five years later, the Jena Six move on . Nomination oversights may be Obama's biggest sin. Feminists against fun?