The Gabfest on a Missouri grand jury’s refusal to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, the Facebook threat case Elonis v. U.S., and the crowded 2016 GOP presidential field.

Why Did a Grand Jury Refuse to Indict Darren Wilson?

Why Did a Grand Jury Refuse to Indict Darren Wilson?

Slate's weekly political roundtable.
Nov. 28 2014 11:27 AM

The “No True Bill” Edition

Listen to Slate's show about the refusal to indict Darren Wilson, the Facebook threat case headed to the Supreme Court, and the GOP’s strong presidential field. 

The Political Gabfest has moved! Find new episodes here.


Become a fan of the Political Gabfest on Facebook. We post to the Facebook page throughout the week, so keep the conversation going by joining us there. Or follow us @SlateGabfest!

To listen to the discussion, use the player below:


For this week’s Slate Plus bonus segment, the hosts discuss Marion Barry’s legacy. Slate Plus members get an ad-free version of this podcast with bonus segments. Visit and try it free for two weeks.

On this week’s Slate Political Gabfest, Jamelle Bouie joins Emily Bazelon, John Dickerson, and David Plotz to discuss the decision not to indict officer Darren Wilson. The regular panel then talks about the Facebook threat case headed to the Supreme Court and the GOP’s strong 2016 presidential field.

Here are some of the links and references mentioned during this week's show:

  • Police officers have a lot of legal latitude when it comes to the use of deadly force. Officers are rarely indicted for shootings.
  • Black teenagers are far more likely to be killed by the police than white teens.
  • Obama’s remarks on the George Zimmerman verdict coincided with a drop in the president's approval rating.
  • Rap lyrics are occasionally used by prosecutors as indicators of a defendant’s inclination toward violence.
  • Last year, Texas teen Justin Carter was charged with making terrorist threats after he got into an argument on the League of Legends Facebook page with another commenter. In response to a derogatory questioning of his sanity, Carter said he was going to shoot up a kindergarten.
  • A 2010 episode of This American Life profiled the trial of a man who was arrested for posting a fake threat about committing a mass shooting at an Apple store.
  • The New York Times Magazine has pronounced Chris Christie back.
  • Ted Cruz unsuccessfully tried to woo Republican megadonor Sheldon Adelson into backing a Cruz presidential run.
  • John wrote about the risks that conservative primary voters pose to some of the less traditionally Republican ideas proposed by 2016 candidates.

Emily chatters about Scott Panetti’s death penalty sentence in Texas.

John chatters about the man who was the only audience member at a Bob Dylan show.

David chatters about Lunar Mission One.

Topic ideas for next week? You can tweet suggestions, links, and questions to @SlateGabfest.

Join the discussion of this episode on Facebook.

The email address for the Political Gabfest is (Email may be quoted by name unless the writer stipulates otherwise.)

Podcast production by Mike Vuolo. Links compiled by Maxwell Tani.