In 2004, Michael Bell's 21-year-old son was killed by police during a routine traffic stop in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Within three days, local law enforcement declared it had fully investigated the matter and announced that police had acted properly throughout. Pushing through his grief, Bell also pushed for change, beginning a decade-long campaign to legally mandate truly independent investigations into deadly use of force by police. He succeeded in Wisconsin and, to date, seven other states to pass such legislation.
Bell's crusade is the subject of a recent video by today's podcast subject, Kmele Foster of Freethink Media, an online video platform founded in 2011 to tell stories about human perseverance, inspiration, and progress. Foster is also the former co-host, with Kennedy and Reason's own Matt Welch, of the Fox Business show The Independents, and a current co-host of the popular podcast The Fifth Column, a free-wheeling, boozy deep-read of news and popular culture.
Foster was born in 1980 and raised in the Washington, D.C. area. I talk with him about how the Michael Bell story exemplifies what Freethink Media is trying to accomplish, what it was like growing up in an immigrant household (his mother is Jamaican), why libertarianism is underrepresented among racial and ethnic minorities, how he came to his anarcho-capitalist beliefs, and what his hopes are for his 1-year-old daughter.
CORRECTION: The original text implied that I was born in 1980. Foster was born that year. I was born in 1963.
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