02 07 2016
  6:09 pm  
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Black Violin

Several years ago, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting produced a documentary series entitled "Violence: An American Tradition." The series described the ways in which this country has historically resolved conflict. One need only read the history books to see that nonviolent diplomacy is not a tradition we can claim as part of our custom.
When we look back on the more than 200-year history of our nation, we find that war has indeed been part of our convention. This heritage is not one that should make us proud to be Americans.

The Last Word

The never-ending debate over the "N" word heated up again on the street and oddly in a courtroom. A parade of Black scholars, writers, activists, hip-hop artists and plain folk sparred over the use of the "N" word during a panel discussion in New York. Some defended it. Some railed against it. The renewed public debate is sparked in part by the wind down of the trial of Nicholas Minucci.

Child Watch

I recently returned from the Children's Defense Fund's Haley Farm in Clinton, Tenn., and a visit to the annual National Training for Servant-Leader Interns for the fund's Freedom Schools program.

The Freedom Schools program is a partnership between the Children's Defense Fund and local community organizations, churches, universities and schools to provide literacy-rich summer and after-school programs.

Rainbow/ PUSH

In his radio address and press conferences last week, the president highlighted the Senate debate on a constitutional amendment — eventually defeated — to ban gay marriage. He didn't mention that the Congress is also geared up to repeal the estate tax — and hand a staggering trillion-dollar benefit to the richest of Americans.

Along the Color Line

Millions of Americans are deeply worried about their economic futures. The signs of the economic crisis ahead are literally everywhere, if one bothers to look at the statistical evidence.

The first, and most important indicator, is the unprecedented concentration of wealth within American society. According to USA Today columnist Yolanda Young, in 1970 the bottom one-third of all U.S. households (today, about 96 million people) "earned 10 times that of the top 1 percent" of all households. By 2004, the upper 1 percent "made as much as the bottom third of Americans."

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