“Start takin’ it to the streets…”

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Start takin’ it to the streets. Boom, boom, boom, boom. There’s twenty! Cha-ching.

That is what Marrero, Louisiana pastor Grant Storms said to a group of anti-gay activitists at the International Conference on Homo-Fascism in 2003 in Milwaukee. But when Action Wisconsin pointed out that Storms was advocating the murder of gay people, Storms sued the group for defamation of character.

Action Wisconsin has now been awarded $87,000 in attorneys’ fees by Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Patricia McMahon, who declared the group’s interpretation of Storms’ remarks “reasonable,” and who went on to say that the lawsuit lacked merit. She also chewed out Storms’ attorney, James Donohoo of Milwaukee, for filing a lawsuit she called “a waste of time.”

Donahoo plans to appeal the award.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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