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« May 2007 | Main | July 2007 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » June 2007

By Janet Morrison on June 30, 2007

To what extent will we (Whites) go to in order to avoid being around people of color?

If you read the history books, that was a real problem back in the '50s. Thank goodness we are beyond that.

...aren't we???

Read more from this post here ...

By Zola Jones on June 29, 2007

"While issues like Iraq are clearly important for all Americans, there are a number of domestic issues that we're all grappling with in this country, including education, healthcare and the economy." - Tavis Smiley

"It was the rise and growth among the slaves of a determination to be free and an active part of American democracy that forced American democracy continually to look into the depths... One cannot think then of democracy in America or in the modern world without reference to the American Negro." - W.E.B. Du Bois, The Gift of Black Folk (1924)

Read more from this post here ...

By Ally Klimkoski on June 29, 2007

The Supreme Court handed down a decision this week against x-high schooler Joseph Frederick who created the banner "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" during a parade in support of the Winter Olympics.

"It remains to be seen what far-reaching effects the decision will have on students' free-speech rights. There's still a great deal of confusion regarding the issue since there are really no hard-and-fast rules concerning what forms of speech are acceptable when you're a student -- and which ones could land you in front of a judge."

When students ask Witold "Vic" Walczak -- the legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania -- for a general rule of thumb when it comes to students' First Amendment rights, "What I usually tell them is, if it involves political or religious speech, you've got fairly extensive rights. Beyond that, not so much. Truth be told, students did not have significant expressive rights before now, except when it dealt with religious and political [matters]." MTV

Me: Damn... were did those free speech rights go?
Answer: Did you check between the cushions of the supreme court?

more below the jump

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 29, 2007

The report on the arrest of 31 undocumented workers at a warehouse in North Dallas that operated as part of the Fossil Watch Company caught my eye as I enjoyed my morning Cherrios a couple of weeks ago. I thought of the story again today in the aftermath of the defeat of the proposed comprehensive immigration reform bill in the U. S. Senate yesterday.

What stood out to me as I read the story were the emotions reported among those apprehended by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 28, 2007

I've said it before, but it seems no one is listening. So, I'll keep saying it: inner city neighborhoods and communities need high-quality, retail grocery shopping opportunities.

We need nice, real, grocery stores - you know, supermarkets - like every other part of the city enjoys. And, we need them now, not later! Sounds fairly mundane, doesn't it? Actually, to the people who put up with the current situation, it is not.

Read more from this post here ...

By Pamela Jean on June 28, 2007

China is rapidly becoming known for faking its food. Hundreds of cases have been documented. China has been adulterating food destined for the U.S. ports with non-food ingredients. These fake or non-food ingredients can be dangerous and deadly.

In two of my previous posts, Counterfeit Food: Simply Profitable, Simply Wrong and Endangered: Best Friends & Homemade Bread, I talked about the tainted and counterfeit foods we are unknowingly importing.

Things seem to keep getting worse, not better.

Now, some 900,000 tubes of toothpaste containing the chemical used in antifreeze products have been found in hotels, motels, institutions for the mentally ill, hospitals, prisons, discount stores, and juvenile facilities in the U.S.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has finally warned Americans not to use any Chinese-made toothpaste, regardless of the brand.

Read more from this post here ...

By Jo Ella Barrie on June 27, 2007

In a country where the big news is a pampered socialite and a $500 phone, I think it's safe to say we need all the perspective we can get. This morning I woke up to a story on NPR which reminded me of the horrible cost of the war being waged in our names while the mainstream media chats endlessly about whether Paris has finally found Jesus and what she's wearing on her way out of jail.

Read more from this post here ...

By Lola Wheeler on June 27, 2007

I pretty much line up all politicians and public servants on one side or the other of a very bright line.

One group, on one side of that line, is comprised of self-serving individuals that either ignore, take advantage of, or exploit the underpowered in our society. The other group, on the other side, is made up of people who look out for our neighbors who are less fortunate. It is this latter group that I have always reserved my votes for.

We don't need government if government's sole purpose is to serve the advantaged few. It doesn't matter if it's a school board, a county commission, a state senate or the White House.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 27, 2007

As the U. S. Senate continues to debate a highly controversial immigration reform act this week, consider these interesting facts about immigration in the United States today.

Read more from this post here ...

By Ally Klimkoski on June 25, 2007

I'm not usually a big pusher of merch - but every once in a while something comes along that is so remarkable to me that I feel compelled to tell everyone I know about it.

Something like this really taps into this notion that we do not have to be divided over issues such as these.

Careful after the jump this equally bashes libs and repubs.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 23, 2007

Did you see USAToday on Wednesday, June 20, 2007? A front page story on the mounting numbers of uninsured Americans reported that Texas leads the nation with right at 25% of us having no health coverage at all.

Minnesota ranked 50th with a bit over 8% uninsured.

The national average comes in at just over 15%. Texas: 25%!

Read more from this post here ...

By Ally Klimkoski on June 22, 2007

A recent article in the Baltimore Sun that tells us that the issue of choice for the Millennial Generation is Genocide Stupid.

"For the past three years, a stunning number of young people have been active at all levels of the democratic process for the sake of civilians in Darfur, Sudan."

Read more from this post here ...

By John Atlas on June 22, 2007

I am a big fan of the type of community organizing done by groups like Acorn and the IAF. The NY Times has an article a few days ago about the community organizing work of the Industrial Areas Foundation in Chicago, focusing on its work in the Muslim community as part of a broader interfaith effort.

The mainstream media rarely write about community organizing, but Sam Freedman who wrote this piece is a major exception. And he writes so elegantly about it as he did for his book, Upon This Rock. Check it out.

By Jessica Orogbu on June 21, 2007

While working with kids for many years, I continue to see the same things over and over again. Parents who don't step up to the plate. I love kids and it breaks my heart to see children without parents (or so to say). Children deserve so much more than what some are getting.

I wish that all parents would make their child look presentable when going out in public. It is a shame when the parent is dressed to impress but the child is walking around without their hair combed, ashy, old clothes that don't fit, too little shoes....

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 21, 2007

As terrible as racism can be when expressed through individuals, we discover the more virulent and deadly variety embedded in public systems...

Read more from this post here ...

By John Atlas on June 21, 2007

In the summer issue of Shelterforce. []

I have written a piece on the connection between US Attorneygate, ACORN and the GOP voter fraud scam. Karl Rove's strategy has been to make it much more difficult for poor and minority people to register to vote and to vote, particularly in key swing states. Harassing groups like ACORN that register and mobilize the poor, on trumped up charges of "voter fraud," has been a major tactic of Rove, with implications for the 2008 races.

Read more from this post here ...

By Lola Wheeler on June 21, 2007

Medicare now provides health insurance to virtually every American over 65 and millions of younger people with disabilities. Under Bill Clinton's Democratic administration, the life of the Medicare Trust Fund was extended by 25 years.

But, when Bush entered office and joined his Republicans in the Congress, his "reform" proposals, six years of congressional policies, his "raids" on the trust fund "lock boxes" and the uncertain economy during Bush's administration have all undermined the strong progress made in Medicare in decades past.

In 2006, the life of the Medicare Trust Fund actually was shortened by four years. And Medicare is currently projected to become insolvent in the middle of the retirement of the baby boom generation if things remain the same.

We can do so much better. I believe we must honor our collective and historic commitment to senior citizens so that all Americans can retire with security and dignity.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 20, 2007

Several years ago, an educator told me that the most efficient and effective way to see standardized test scores go up was to make sure that every child enjoyed a balanced, nutritious breakfast before taking any exam.

Read more from this post here ...

By John Atlas on June 19, 2007

I have helped organize a variety of groups, including New Jersey Tenants Organization (NJTO), New Jersey Citizen Action (NJCA), and Passaic County Legal Aid Society (PCLAS).

I have shared some of these experiences through a bi-weekly radio program on WBAI, coauthored a book (Saving Affordable Housing), and written dozens of articles in the New York Times, Washington Post, Nation, American Prospect, Star-Ledger, Social Policy, Herald News, and elsewhere. The thread connecting my activities is an empowerment philosophy that includes linking people, ideas, and organizations and building new leadership.

At PCLAS, which served Paterson, the third largest city in New Jersey and one of the nation's poorest cities, I recruited a top-flight multiracial, multilingual staff of 37, promoted minorities to leadership positions, and built connections with local community groups, churches, schools, and other sectors.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on June 19, 2007

It was on June 19, 1865, that General Gordon Granger and 2,000 federal soldiers arrived at Galveston Island as part of the plan to take possession of the state of Texas, previously under the control of the Confederate, rebel government.

Upon his arrival, Granger announced his enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation issued by President Lincoln almost three years earlier on September 22, 1862.

Unknown to the slave population of Galveston, Lincoln's executive order went into effect on January 1, 1863.

Read more from this post here ...

Earlier posts in this month:

Bush Unpopular Even in Kansas, June 17, 2007
Safe Food & Family Farms, June 17, 2007
Interview with Iranian Poet Farideh Hassanzadeh, June 14, 2007
37,000,000 Neighbors, June 14, 2007
Carrying out the trash, June 14, 2007
The Housing Challenge, June 12, 2007
So much more than words..., June 10, 2007
Write the Checks & Look Away, June 8, 2007
Profits and the Poor, June 8, 2007
Big Money Screws Young People, June 8, 2007
Bitter Fruit & Lines in the Sand, June 7, 2007
Bill Moyers' Commencement Speech, June 7, 2007
World's Largest Bovine Hairball, June 5, 2007
Our President, Our Poor: Time for a Real Change, June 5, 2007
Monica, Up Close, June 5, 2007
Faith, Values & Poverty, June 4, 2007
The High Cost of Gas, June 2, 2007
Tempting Faith, by David Kuo, June 1, 2007
The Assault on Reason, by Al Gore, June 1, 2007
My Local Zoning Board: Conflicts of Interest, June 1, 2007
Big Coal, by Jeff Goodell, June 1, 2007
The Price of Motherhood, by Ann Crittenden, June 1, 2007
Flat Broke with Children, by Sharon Hays, June 1, 2007
The Shame of the Nation, by Jonathan Kozol, June 1, 2007
Without a Net, by Michelle Tea, June 1, 2007
Hope Dies Last, by Studs Terkel, June 1, 2007
The Irresistible Revolution, by Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw, June 1, 2007
Cheap Motels and a Hot Plate, by Michael Yates, June 1, 2007
Screwed, by Thom Hartmann, June 1, 2007
Hip-Hop, Rock n' Roll & the Fury of Islam, June 1, 2007
Night Draws Near, by Anthony Shadid, June 1, 2007
deMOCKracy, by Mike Maggio, June 1, 2007
MyMoney MySpace, June 1, 2007
State of Denial, by Bob Woodward, June 1, 2007

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