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« December 2008 | Main | February 2009 »

Front Page » Monthly Archives » January 2009

By Larry James on January 31, 2009

[I've read earlier versions of this story a few years ago, and you may have seen it already. But, I just had to share it here. Every now and then you just need a good story to lift your heart!]

In a supermarket, Kurtis the stock boy was busily working when a new voice came over the loud speaker asking for a carry-out at register 4. Kurtis was almost finished and wanted to get some fresh air, so he decided to answer the call. As he approached the checkout stand, a distant smile caught his eye ~ the checkout girl was beautiful. She was an older woman (maybe 26, and he was only 22) and he fell in love.

Read more from this post here ...

By Gerald Britt on January 31, 2009


"The world is moving so fast these days that the one who says it can't be done is generally interrupted by someone doing it."

Harry Emerson Fosdick, 1878-1969, Pastor, Riverside Church, New York, New York, 1925-1946

By Janet Morrison on January 31, 2009

After having a "snow day" earlier this week, I was finally able to put together the video from the inauguration. Here is our trip to the inauguration...

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on January 31, 2009

You think you have tough choices to make these days?

Me, too.

Read more from this post here ...

By Angelo Lopez on January 30, 2009

I recently did a painting for a coworker on the Obama Inaugural. I did two different versions, because I wasn't really satisfied with the upper left corner of the first painting. I really wanted to show the people who made Obama's election possible, people like Martin Luther King Jr., Sojourner Truth, Malcolm X, W.E.B. DuBois and all those who fought for the rights of African Americans and paved the way for the opportunities that all Americans have today. The struggle continues, but it was good to celebrate how far our country has come.

Read more from this post here ...

By Gerald Britt on January 30, 2009

The city council must have the political courage to say no. Council members should go even further and impose a moratorium on all new special use permits for liquor-related businesses in South Dallas until neighborhood redevelopment plans are completed. To do otherwise is insensitive, demeaning and disrespectful. - (Gerald Britt, Dallas Morning News)
If I hadn't expected it; if I hadn't figured it would turn out this way, I'd really be disillusioned and very angry!

Read more from this post here ...

By Sarah Burris on January 30, 2009

After each election when everyone is exhausted from working 15 hour days another election sneaks up on us that is too often ignored. City elections in many areas of the country spring up in April, May, and June in odd years and present another great opportunities for young candidates to get involved.

While starting out in local government isn't mandatory for young candidates (both Rep. Tim Ryan and new Rep. Jared Polis started with state positions then Congress), its a great way for young people to get involved with their communities.

Everyday Citizen buddy Jason Croucher started out with the Osage City Council in Osage City, Kansas and has worked his first term to increase broadband access with a city wide wifi service while also looking at new and innovative ways to retain young people in their city. If we could clone him across the country we would never need those aircards!

Candidate for Topeka, Kansas School Board Rebecca Crawford thinks her age gives her a different perspective.

Read more from this post here ...

By Bob Hooper on January 30, 2009

After 9 exhilarating months, Bogue's Great Dismal Swamp project has been scuttled, the leak fixed, and the hole mostly filled. The mayor's benevolence with the public's water supply was disputed by the KDHE. So far as it is required by law, I apologize for having raised expectations (and for irritating the local Pooh-Bahs).

Medicare. You knew that Medicare administrative costs are approximately 2 percent, contrasted with private companies costs of 10 to as much as 30 percent, right? Seniors (like me and Better Half) spend an average of 20 percent of disposable income on health care. A single-payer system would save taxpayers $300 billion a year, according to several sources, including the American Medical Association. So when?

Read more from this post here ...

By Janet Morrison on January 30, 2009

As I read this article, Study Sees an Obama Effect as Lifting Black Test-Takers, I winced.

Researchers have documented what they call the "Obama Effect." Researchers from Vanderbilt, San Diego State, and Northwestern administered a 20-question test four times throughout the presidential campaign. When they administered the test after Mr. Obama's nomination acceptance speech and then again after President-elect Obama's election victory, they concluded that the difference between White and Black performance had become “statistically nonsignificant.”

I do believe that having a Black man in the highest office of our country is bound to change the thinking of Black students about themselves, as well as change the perceptions people of other ethnicities have of Black people. However, to say that this effect happens literally overnight is disconcerting. It opens up the floodgates of being able to "blame the victim" and exclaim that Black people are responsible for their own inability to achieve.

Read more from this post here ...

By Gerald Britt on January 29, 2009

Mark Davis is wrong. He very often is.

Mark Davis is a columnist with the Dallas Morning News and a local conservative radio talk show host. His views are not just conservative in that they present an alternative oppositional view. And I don't believe that he is wrong, simply because he doesn't think like me. Its that his viewpoints are often so - well - illogical. And often insulting. There seems to be this idea that there is a 'mainstream' point of view that is often Republican (not necessarily conservative), and Anglo-Saxon in its orientation and which disregards the validity and the reality of life experiences that are not his own. So that often leads to generalizations that are indefensible on their face.

Take, for instance, a current offering, in which he suggests that the Inauguration of Barack Obama was at least as political as it was historical (duh!). No problem there.

Then he makes a few assertions that undermine what could have been a fairly benign, but plausible perspective on how this presidency is more about the ascendancy of an anti-Bush fervor, so much so that the country was willing to elect a black man to sweep Republicans out of the White House.

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on January 29, 2009

Grameen Bank founder, Muhammad Yunus believes that companies engaged in capitalist enterprise can have a dramatic affect on poverty.

He is not alone. We're reading more and more these days about "social enterprise" as a tool for impacting impoverished communities.

Last week I sat in on the final sessions of the annual meeting of a Fortune 500 company held here in Dallas, Texas. I was encouraged and, frankly, overwhelmed to hear and see this major worldwide corporation's plans for and growing commitment to social enterprise here in the U. S. and around the world.

Read more from this post here ...

By Henry Schwaller on January 29, 2009

"I, El Rushbo - and I say this happily - have hijacked Obama's honeymoon." - Rush Limbaugh
In late 1992, I was driving across Kansas and listening to AM talk radio. Rush Limbaugh was riding high. Yes, G.H.W. Bush had been defeated, but Rush was on a terror. Bill and Hillary Clinton would occupy the White House in January, and Rush was preparing the conservative militia. The Great Oracle from Missouri predicted disaster, calamity, and loose liberalism over the next 4 years and told listeners that his new book - See, I Told You So - would prove all his predictions correct. The book was an instant success; ironically, today one can be bought on Amazon.com for $0.01 plus shipping.

Read more from this post here ...

By Tula Connell on January 29, 2009

Former U.S. Secretary of Labor Robert Reich has some advice for those looking for answers about how to make our economy work for everyone: restore the freedom to form unions, and give workers the bargaining power they need to improve their own lives.

In a recent op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, "The Union Way Up," Reich says the nation can get out of our economic slump and on the road to a sustainable economy by passing the Employee Free Choice Act:

The sooner it's enacted, the better--for U.S. workers and for the U.S. economy...making it easier for all Americans to form unions would give the middle class the bargaining power it needs for better wages and benefits. And a strong and prosperous middle class is necessary if our economy is to succeed.

Read more from this post here ...

By Janet Morrison on January 29, 2009

Though I am passionate about education, I didn't vote for Barack Obama based on his stance on education. Actually, I didn't hear him talk much about education. It disappointed me, but I believed that, overall, he had the right vision so I voted for him anyway.

So, when I saw the New York Times article, Stimulus Plan Would Provide Flood of Aid to Education, I was pleasantly surprised... and actually very excited.

The $150 billion designated for education would more than double the current education spending and would go toward "school renovation, special education, Head Start and grants to needy college students." It's about time we started thinking about education in a much broader sense than "No Child Left Behind."

Read more from this post here ...

By Glenn Staab on January 29, 2009

Here's the deal. I'm running a little late this week because I was taking some Continuing Education classes for my insurance license. In order to sell you a home or auto policy, I need an hour ethics class, along with another 11 hours of a la carte classes. To maintain my life and health license, another 12 hours is required, including the all-important hour-long ethics class.

Read more from this post here ...

By Janet Morrison on January 28, 2009

Why is there so much hostility and resentment to police in the inner city and from the Black and Hispanic community?

Here is a new cell phone video that has just been released on the Oscar Grant case showing a different police officer punching him in the face before the other officer shot him in the back and killed him:

Read more from this post here ...

By Gerald Britt on January 28, 2009

So as currently proposed, how would Texas benefit from the Obama economic recovery plan? Where would those dollars go? According to a report in the Dallas Morning News, the plan, which could bring some $27 billion to the state, could break down like this -

  • Highways - $2.42 billion
  • Transit and rail - $336.53 million
  • Food Stamps - $1.8 billion increase
  • Job Training for youth, displaced workers, and adults - $163.48 million
  • Unemployment Insurance - $846 million
  • Medicaid - $5.12 billion
  • Specific potential benefits to Dallas:
    • $70.7 million - Low income schools
    • $48.06 million - Special Education
    • $82.73 - School Rehabilitation and construction

There is more than $100 million for homeless assistance, and $400 million in block grants. Governor Rick Perry's reaction? "Just bad message. Bad policy."

Read more from this post here ...

By Larry James on January 28, 2009

Gran Torino is a must-see film for community builders. I got the feeling watching it that Clint Eastwood did this film because he knew it needed to be produced.

Walt Kowalski, Eastwood's character, a veteran of the Korean War, lives in a radically changed community in Detroit, Michigan. His long-time home neighborhood is now populated largely by immigrants.

Read more from this post here ...

By Jim Faris on January 28, 2009

A call has sounded and President Obama leads the chorus for the next generation to find their way serve the country. Mayoral, city council, and school board elections in Kansas are now in full swing and there are two in the small town of Oskaloosa that have stood and asked to be counted for election.

Read more from this post here ...

By Janet Morrison on January 27, 2009

I can't help but love it...


Earlier posts in this month:

Support SCHIP to your Senators, January 27, 2009
Is Clean-Coal Possible?, January 27, 2009
Human Rights Watch: Employee Free Choice Is a Human Right, January 27, 2009
Reflections on the Moment, January 27, 2009
Justice Revival Coming to Dallas!, January 27, 2009
Putting the Economic Downturn in Perspective, January 26, 2009
Economic Recovery Must Help the Poor, January 26, 2009
A Poverty-Free World, January 26, 2009
Searching for Balance, January 26, 2009
Change Has Come to the United States of America, January 25, 2009
Humpty Dumpty in Pieces: The Truth About EFCA and Secret Ballot Elections, January 25, 2009
The Shift of January 20, 2009, January 24, 2009
Privacy is Key in Roe v. Wade, January 24, 2009
For 'West Wing' Fans!, January 24, 2009
For Those Who Would Change the Wind, January 24, 2009
Rev. Joseph Lowery: A Role Model of Agape Love, January 24, 2009
Which Fast to Choose? Which Wolf to Feed?, January 24, 2009
Appreciating the Inaugural Poem, January 24, 2009
Landmarks on the Road to the Inauguration, January 24, 2009
Understanding Lowery's Benediction, January 24, 2009
And in Austin, Texas, January 24, 2009
Trick or Vote #1 in GOTV, January 23, 2009
My Murals, January 23, 2009
Playing for Change: The Good Power of the Streets, January 23, 2009
Bloggers and the Good Fight: We Just Keep On, Keeping On, January 23, 2009
More on Joseph Lowery, January 23, 2009
Corruption, January 22, 2009
Inaugural After Glow: Peace Ball 2009, January 22, 2009
Krugman: Employee Free Choice Key to Economic Recovery, January 22, 2009
Are You Serious?!, January 22, 2009
Communities: Recognizing and Facing the Crises Together, January 22, 2009
Me on America Dot Gov, January 22, 2009
Inauguration Day: I Give You President Barack H. Obama, January 21, 2009
Elizabeth Alexander's Poem for the Inaugural, January 21, 2009
Out with the old, thankfully, January 21, 2009
Promise of a Generation & Fears of Obama Administration, January 21, 2009
Obama's Presidency: What It Means to African-Americans and the World, January 21, 2009
The Best of the Inaugural: Obama, Seeger and Springsteen, January 21, 2009
Prayer and the Inauguration: What You Heard and What You Didn't!, January 21, 2009
Completing a Story: A Struggle, January 21, 2009
Reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals, January 20, 2009
New White House Website, January 20, 2009
Carter is back!, January 20, 2009
A Change Has Finally Come, January 20, 2009
Turning point?, January 20, 2009
Inauguration: A Father's Letter and Our Communities, January 20, 2009
Watching with Awe and Expectation, January 20, 2009
The Celebration and Challenge of Truth and Hope, January 19, 2009
All We Need to Know: Community Building 101, January 19, 2009
DREAM Act: We Need It Passed Now, January 19, 2009
My Pilgrimage to DC: I Want It All!, January 19, 2009
On This Eve of Eves: Seeking Yet Another Inaugural Moment, January 19, 2009
Gene Robinson, Rick Warren and a Dialogue Between Gays and Christians, January 18, 2009
Alice Walker's Letter to President-Elect Obama, January 18, 2009
Our Determined Group of Bloggers Said (again): Yes, We Can!, January 18, 2009
My Inaugural Trip: The Start of a New Day, January 18, 2009
Its Most Powerful Weapon Was Love, January 18, 2009
On This Eve of Eves: Seeking an Inaugural Moment, January 18, 2009
Left Behind: Employees of Small Employers and the Right to Unionize, January 18, 2009
At Last!, January 18, 2009
Born Again Americans, January 18, 2009
60 hours on a bus, 10 hours in Washington D.C., January 17, 2009
For Those Who Would Change the Wind, January 17, 2009
January Cartoons and Drawings, January 16, 2009
Five Days and Counting!, January 16, 2009
Chairman Miller Details Impact on Students with Economic Recovery Act, January 16, 2009
Our Great Dismal Swamp and Other Stories, January 16, 2009
Drop into my world for a moment, January 16, 2009
Dump the Post Day, January 15, 2009
Robert Kennedy on the Death of Martin Luther King, January 15, 2009
Can Obama Lead Us Out of Recession and Become a Great President?, January 15, 2009
Who Loses While Dallas Delays?, January 15, 2009
Sigh... Another Study, January 14, 2009
Sad Facts of Life, January 14, 2009
The Infuriated, January 14, 2009
Stuck in the Mudhole with You, January 14, 2009
Is Dallas Missing an Opportunity - Again?, January 13, 2009
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, January 13, 2009
Obama: Encourage Social Movements and Other Lessons from FDR's Era, January 13, 2009
For Those Who Would Change the Wind, January 12, 2009
The Limits and Possibilities of Community Service, January 12, 2009
Corporate Greed: Opposition to Employee Free Choice Act, January 12, 2009
Pastor Otis J. Moss Retires, January 12, 2009
Our New President Calls for Sacrifice, January 11, 2009
Employee Free Choice Act and the Lesson of Smithfield Packing, January 11, 2009
The Medical Malpractice Myth, by Tom Baker, January 11, 2009
Failing Communities, January 11, 2009
Give Me the Ball!, January 11, 2009
Will the recession bring back some wisdom and skills?, January 11, 2009
Peace, Propaganda & the Promised Land Video, January 10, 2009
Community Observed, January 10, 2009
Kudos to Dallas' City Council!, January 10, 2009
The Balls Grow: Events in DC Around Inauguration, January 9, 2009
'Senseless' Rioting?, January 8, 2009
Is Your Clergy Member Trained? Sex and the Seminary, January 8, 2009
The Telling Gap, January 8, 2009
A Tale of Two Different Cities, January 7, 2009
A Wish List for 2009, January 7, 2009
A Cynical Act, January 7, 2009
Last Year's Non-Controversies, January 7, 2009
Why Israel Needs to Stop Bombing Gaza and Come to the Peace Table, January 6, 2009
December Cartoons, January 6, 2009
Obama's Biggest Challenge: Keep Us Believing, January 6, 2009
Free Will's Best Use, January 6, 2009
Let's Not Forget Joseph Lowery!, January 5, 2009
Living on the Move, January 5, 2009
For Those Who Would Change the Wind, January 5, 2009
R.I.P., Circuit City, January 4, 2009
Joyeux Noel, a Movie of Hope, January 4, 2009
Israeli Palestinian Conflict and the Language of War, January 4, 2009
The Year Ahead and the Reasons for My Hope, January 3, 2009
Categorically Unequal: Book Notes, January 3, 2009
Breaking the Huddle, January 3, 2009
Blessed Are the Peacemakers, January 2, 2009
Gay Rights Groups, January 2, 2009
It's 2009: Time to Do What Works for Us All, January 2, 2009
Leading by Example: Organic Farming at the White House, January 2, 2009
It ain't your money, honey, it's g-g-gone, January 2, 2009
My Place in Line, January 2, 2009
The 'Four-Sided' Siege of Gaza, January 2, 2009
Reflections of insignificance, January 2, 2009
Initial Blog of a Democrat Neophyte, January 1, 2009
Hope for the New Year, January 1, 2009
Finding New Focus, January 1, 2009
Civil Rights Organizations Then and Now, January 1, 2009
Values, Vision, and Hard Times, January 1, 2009
The Directory of Healthcare Recruiters, January 1, 2009
Sometimes you just have to make a stop, January 1, 2009

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