EBONY SLAUGHTER-JOHNSON – The anger surrounding teaching children a more expansive (and truthful) version of American history can largely be understood as a backlash to the Black Lives Matter era, the victories of which have been largely symbolic and localized. The legislative entrenchment of affirmative action will be spun by conservatives as â€œreverse racismâ€ that hampers the educational advancement of white children. That argument will hold traction among conservatives, moderates, and progressives. As we prepare for the possibility of a post-Roe future, it might also be time to anticipate a future in which affirmative action is unavailable as a means of promoting diversity in and economic mobility through higher education.
DR. JOSEPH GERSON -Beyond this hysteria, peace, labor and immigrant rights activists and scholars are gathering in Chicago for the May 18-19 Counter-Summit for Peace and Economic Justice, to present the case against NATO-driven militarism.
NANCY SCOLA – Public Safety and Elections was not quite a rogue unit, it was a distraction. Today’s release from ALEC was titled ‘ALEC Sharpens Focus,’ and the theme continued in its body, which said the group was recommitting to its ‘efforts on the economic front, a priority that has been the hallmark of out organization for decades.’
BETSY CRITES – The withdrawal from Iraq is to be celebrated like a migraine that finally subsides. It is what the majority of Americans have long asked for through pollsters and by their election of a president who promised to get us out.
ROBERT REICH – Republicans are debating again tomorrow night. And once again, Americans will hear the standard regressive litany: government is bad, Medicare and Medicaid should be cut, â€œObamacareâ€ is killing the economy, undocumented immigrants are taking our jobs, the military should get more money, taxes should be lowered on corporations and the rich, and regulations should be gutted.
JONATHAN WILLIAMS – How do we win? How do we get our demands met? We need power. But what is power? How do we get it? Simply put, power is the ability to act; the ability to end the wars, the ability to convert our economy, the ability to change the world. But how do we get that kind of power?
BETSY CRITES – What do Durham and Afghanistan have in common? We are worlds apart, but we both have people who need jobs, health care, schools, transportation and sewers, and help for our homeless, elderly and hungry. Neither of us is getting our critical needs met in part because a war neither of us really wants is draining our economies, killing and injuring our young people, and depleting our spirits.
LAWRENCE WITTNER – In the midst of the current stampede to slash federal spending, Congress might want to take a look at two unnecessary (and dangerous) “national security” programs that, if cut, would save the United States over a quarter of a trillion dollars over the next decade.
VERNICE SOLIMAR, PHD – Over the years, students and faculty at John F. Kennedy University have expressed a desire to apply principles of psychology, human development and human potential to social action, diversity and systems approaches to planetary issues…a major need for the 21st century was a new paradigm of leadership that would solve problems, shift systems and create opportunities that engendered respect and care of the community, ecological integrity, social and economic justice and world peace.
DAVID KRIEGER – What does it mean to be human? Why are we here on Earth? What are the greatest goals one can pursue in life? What are the keys to a happy and fulfilled life? If you didnâ€™t, itâ€™s not too late.
LAURA CARVER AND JANE SOMMERVILLE – While the root causes for many problems are complex, one common cause is lack of social engagement — something we want to do something about. In fact, this is what we are doing for our summer vacation.
JOHN NORRIS – The United States is fundamentally getting it wrong when it comes to setting its priorities, particularly with regard to the budget and how Americans as a nation use their resources more broadly.
DAVID SWANSON – In December 2009, psychologist Bruce Levine published an article at Alternet called “Are Americans a Broken People?” His timing couldn’t have been better. Americans of good will and bad analysis were suffering a severe fit of Obamanation withdrawal. The article was reposted everywhere, commented on endlessly, and responded to voluminously. (This was my response.) Levine has now developed his article into an important book called “Get Up, Stand Up.”
JO COMERFORD – [Today is Tax Day. It seems appropriate for Americans to know what their government is using their money for. Here is a comprehensive summary. â€“ Editor]
Six months after the start of the current fiscal year (FY2011), congressional leaders and President Obama have reached agreement on a budget for the second half of the year. In all the deal provides just over $1 trillion in spending over the last six months of the year, a cut of roughly $40 billion from FY2010 levels.
ROBERT DODGE, MD – The United Nations General Assembly has proclaimed 2011 the International Year of Youth. This is in recognition of childrenâ€™s rights throughout the world and to realize the potential of children everywhere. The resolution proclaiming the Year signifies the importance the international community places on integrating youth-related issues into global, regional, and national development agendas. Under the theme â€œDialogue and Mutual Understanding,â€ the Year aims to promote the ideals of peace, respect for human rights and solidarity across generations, cultures, religions and civilizations.
BETTY A. REARDON AND TONY JENKINS – The New York Times recently featured significant articles highlighting the important role of non-formal civilian education and training contributing to the nonviolent toppling of dictatorships in Tunisia and Egypt (Feb 13: A Tunisian-Egyptian Link That Shook Arab History; Feb 16: Shy U.S. Intellectual Created Playbook Used in a Revolution). In our peacebuilding work, we have found that such significant nonviolent political transformations are not likely to occur without the essential education and training of everyday citizens in the knowledge and skills of peacemaking, mediation and negotiation, conflict transformation, and nonviolent resistance. This is why we believe the February 18 vote in the U.S. House of Representatives in favor of amendment 100 to HR 1 (246 to 182 â€“ largely along partisan lines) that will eliminate all federal funding for the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) is a tremendous mistake.