News & Commentary
Washington is descending into another silly season. Let’s end this diversion of dust and smoke as partisans hype mock “scandals” for political profit. The real scandals — like that of children in poverty — are simply being ignored. In this rich nation, nearly 8 million children under the age of 18 are being raised in what are called “areas of concentrated poverty.” These are the ghettos, barrios and impoverished rural areas where more than 30 percent of families live below the poverty line (a little over $22,000 for a family of four in 2010, when these figures date from). The …
Malcolm X was a complex man. The beating death of his grandson, Malcolm Shabazz, 28, in a Mexico City bar, days before his grandfather’s birth date, only adds to this complex legacy. For, the life and death of Malcolm X is unlike any other civil rights icon.
Malcolm X is remembered as an impassioned speaker who demanded change by any means necessary. Malcolm X said things aloud about White oppression most African-Americans whispered because they lacked his courage, intellect, and love of race. Yet, he was gunned down by his own people.
Malcolm was born into conflict in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1925. His parents, Earl and Louise Little, and their eight children moved to Lansing, Michigan, seeking opportunity and peace from racial oppression. They would find neither. Malcolm’s father, a minister, and member of the Universal Negro Improvement Association, became a target of the Ku Klux Klan.
Earl Little was …
It was terror that shook the nation. On Sunday, Sept. 15, 1963, a bomb exploded in the basement of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala. Four little girls, all dressed in white — 14-year-olds Addie Mae Collins, Carole Robertson and Cynthia Wesley, and 11-year-old Denise McNair — died in the explosion, and are remembered in history. Congress now is considering offering them posthumously a Congressional Gold Medal. But there was a fifth little girl caught in the blast — 10-year-old Sarah Collins Rudolph — the younger sister of Addie Mae. Partly blinded, she staggered from the basement bleeding …
The student loan burden is reaching crisis proportions. Young Americans are being saddled with unsustainable debts. A New York Federal Reserve Bank study found that a stunning 43 percent of 25-year-olds had student loan debts in 2012. Debt now averages over $25,000 for graduates of four-year colleges. Student loan debt now is about $1 trillion. The only kind of household debt that continued to rise through the recession, student loans now exceed credit card debt and rank second only to mortgages. The percentage of borrowers who are more than 90 days delinquent has risen to 17 percent, up from 10 …
When Beyonce Knowles sang the Etta James song “At Last” at President Barack Obama’s 2009 inauguration, the song could have had several meanings. At last we have an African American President? At last, the muscle of the Black vote has been flexed? At last, there is some hope for our country to come together with the mantra “Yes We Can”.
Watching the President and First Lady Michelle Obama slow dance to the romantic standard reminded us that African American families have not often been positively depicted. This attractive image of an intact Black family had come “At Last”. Thus, the song was symbolic of what many folks, and especially African Americans, believed about the Obama Presidency.
Some of us blindly believed that with an African American president opportunity had come “At Last”. Some believed it so fervently that the least criticism of President Obama, no matter how mild and how …
The Atlanta public school cheating scandal is but “the tip of the iceberg,” reports Bob Schaeffer, public education director of the National Center for Fair and Open Testing. A new FairTest survey reports confirmed cheating incidents in 37 states and the District of Columbia in just that last four years. It also lists 50 ways adults in public schools artificially boost test scores. When everyone cheats, you know something is wrong with the test. In fact, high-stakes testing — in which jobs and even the existence of schools depend on the results of a standardized test — is a perverse …
Justice Sonia Sotomayor was brutally honest. No U.S. Supreme Court Justice has ever revealed such personal details of life behind their rise to this nation’s most coveted law job.
President Barack Obama made history when he nominated Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2009. A graduate of Princeton University and Yale Law School, she was a former prosecutor and then appellate judge. Now, Justice Sotomayor, the first Latina, and third woman on the U.S. Supreme Court, again breaks new ground.
Her memoir “My Beloved World” is historic because no sitting Justice has ever exposed intimate details of their childhood, especially one involving an alcoholic father and crime-ridden Bronx, NY, neighborhood. Judges are intentionally closed off in order to appear objective. They maintain an image of quiet black-robed dignity.
Yet, Justice Sotomayor did not lose her judicial dignity in displaying her humanity; she only enhanced it. Although of average …
The April jobs report has been hailed as good news by the nation’s newspapers. But a look under the numbers is more sobering. In Chicago and cities across the country, extreme poverty remains high, and the jobless still haunt our streets. Washington would rather sell optimism. We’ve seen 38 straight months of private-sector jobs growth. The stock market is at record heights. Corporate profits are setting records as a percentage of the economy. Compared with Europe and Japan, the U.S. is doing well. But more than 20 million people are still in need of full-time work. That level of unemployment …
The Senate’s Gang of Eight have put together an 844 page monstrosity known as the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act, legislation that President Obama says he “basically approves” of. The crafters of this essentially unreadable bill was put together by Senators Dick Durbin (Illinois), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Michael Bennett (D-CO), Marco Rubio (R-FLA), Jeff Flake (AZ), John McCain (AZ) and Lindsay Graham (R-SC). On its surface, the bill provides much-needed relief to many of the 11 million undocumented people who live in our country. The challenge is that it disadvantages some immigrants, especially African and Caribbean immigrants, while helping others.
Further, the Senators crafting the bill put goodies into the bill that only serve to advantage themselves or their states. Senator Lindsay Graham wants more visas for the meat packing industry. Senator Charles Schumer provided special provisions for Irish people with a high …
The global economy is fueled by our demand for digital technology. To meet such a demand, developed economies scramble in Africa to secure precious minerals and metals.…
- Child poverty is the real scandal
May 21, 2013
- Malcolm X: A Complex Legacy
May 20, 2013
- Reparations in order for 1963 bombing
May 17, 2013
- Student loan crisis is coming to a head
May 14, 2013
- AT LAST
May 13, 2013
- Chicago Sun-Times 2013-05-10 11:14:31
May 10, 2013
- Justice Sotomayor: The Whole Truth
May 7, 2013
- A fair minimum wage is a measure of decency
- THE FLAWED IMMIGRATION REFORM BILL
May 6, 2013
- Africa Lags Behind As It’s Resources Power China’s Growth
May 5, 2013
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