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Cops, Communities Work Together To Address Use Of Force Issues

Oklahoma police have shot and killed more people per capita this year than any other state in the nation. In Oklahoma City, fatal officer-involved shootings are on the rise as well, and that’s causing some to question officer training. In July, four Oklahoma City police officers arrived at a house in the northeast part of the city. They were looking for Andre Williams. Williams was a registered sex offender with a lengthy record, and he had allegedly just raped a woman. When the four cops...
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Beekeeper Tim McCoy removes a rogue honeybees have from an electrical box in farmland near Weatherford, Okla in this June 2015 photo.
Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

Oklahoma lost a greater percentage of its honeybee colonies than any other state over the last year. On Tuesday, beekeepers, scientists, and farmers gathered at Langston University’s Oklahoma City campus to give their input on a plan to better protect pollinators of all kinds.

Robert Hoefling performs at the Bluebonnet Bar during Norman Music Festival 8 - April 2015
Nathan Poppe / The Oklahoman

Cleveland County District Judge Thad Balkman ruled Tuesday he won't turn his temporary injunction that forbids the Norman Music Festival from banning guns into a permanent order.

Balkman said the legislature is the appropriate place to ban enforcement of no-gun policies at public events, according to The Oklahoman’s Jane Glenn Cannon:

American currency
thinkpanama / Flickr Creative Commons

The Oklahoma Democratic Party is suing the state Ethics Commission over new agency rules that prohibit any fundraising or distribution of election materials on state-owned property.

Party officials filed the lawsuit Monday in federal court in Oklahoma City, arguing the new rules are an improper restraint on free speech in violation of the U.S. Constitution. Oklahoma Democratic Party Chairman Mark Hammons says the rules already have forced the party to abandon a fundraiser scheduled at Oklahoma City Community College last month.

President Obama's perhaps most notable statement on race came recently in Charleston, S.C. That's where he gave the eulogy for nine African-Americans killed by a white man in a church.

The president has also continued to address the killings of black men at the hands of the police, and he's pushing to reduce the number of prison inmates, who are disproportionately black.

Republican state Sen. Rick Brinkley
Oklahoma Senate

Gov. Mary Fallin has called a special election to replace Republican state Sen. Rick Brinkley, who has announced he will resign at the end of the year. 

The Tulsa World reports that Fallin on Monday scheduled a Nov. 10 primary election for Brinkley's seat in north Tulsa County. A general election will be conducted on Jan. 12. The filing period for candidates is Aug. 31 through Sept. 2.

In this week's Maphead, Ken Jennings explains how the Oklahoma panhandle went from unclaimed land to bootlegger's paradise—and is now a road-trip destination.

President Obama says his agreement over Iran's nuclear program — while facing fierce criticism in Congress and among the American public now — will look better in years to come.

Monsanto's Chesterfield, Missouri research campus is currently undergoing an expansion, with more laboratory space in construction.
Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

Monsanto, the world’s largest seed company, is attempting to swallow up the chemical operations of Syngenta, the world’s largest producer of pesticides and other farm inputs. The proposed deal signals a change in focus for the agricultural giant, and could have ripple effects across farm country.

By its own admission, Monsanto lags behind in chemistry research. To boost its research in chemistry, and possibly find new ways to combine chemicals and biotech crops, Monsanto wants to buy the Swiss chemical company.

The majority of Native American tribal nations across the country do not recognize same sex marriage.

Because of tribal sovereignty, the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality does not apply. That leaves gay tribal members struggling to balance celebration for LGBTQ members across the states and the sting that comes with knowing they may not be able to marry within their own nation.

From the Here & Now Contributor’s Netowrk, KGOU’s Kate Carlton Greer reports.

gavel lying on desk
steakpinball / Flickr Creative Commons

An Oklahoma District County judge struck down a law Monday morning banning certain uses of abortion-inducing drugs. The hearing came after the State Supreme Court blocked the measure from taking effect last year. 

The state of Oklahoma argued the law would ban the off-label methods of abortion-inducing drugs because there were "safer” alternatives. But the judge called the special law unconstitutional and said the state was singling out the medication because it is used for abortions.

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