Rights and Democracy
This year’s anniversary of the historic 1963 March on Washington promises to be memorable.Though big commemorations aren’t typical for 47th anniversaries, thousands will be in the streets on August 28 commemorating the march, including many people advancing a social agenda that would make Martin Luther King Jr. roll over in his grave.
Do we really have to say nice things about George Steinbrenner just because he’s…you know…dead?
We live in grim times, which is why you have to take your laughs where you can get them. For example, in Washington, where Republican congresspeople keep talking about their concern for their grandchildren as an excuse for voting against…well, practically everything: economic stimulus packages, financial reform, immigration reform, etc.
Congressional Republicans have spent the first two years of the Obama administration as the rock-solid party of “no,” “uh-uh,” “no way,” “forget about it,” “nothing doing,” “we’re-agin-it-and-we’ll-kill-it.” This is one reason their job approval rating is in the ditch.
Prison numbers are tough to pin down. There is the federal system, there are 50 state systems, and no one is just sure how many local jails or military brigs. All told, professionals estimate that one in every 100 Americans resides in one of them.
On Mother’s Day, three months before Arizona’s draconian new immigration law was to go into effect, a mother of two addressed a vigil outside of an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center. The woman had been intercepted, without papers, on her way to work. Unable to fight back tears, she told the crowd of the months she spent in this privatized detention center, wondering if she would ever see her children again.
Wooden died at the age of 99 in June, 35 years after retiring as the most successful (and many would say best) basketball coach of all time. During the final 12-year stretch of his career, his UCLA teams won 10 national championships, a record unlikely ever to be broken.
At last, there’s a Democrat in the Senate who’s acting like a real Democrat in the FDR mold, unafraid and unabashed to go right at the corporate powers who dominate our economy, environment, media, politics, and government. Al Franken, the new Minnesota senator who won the seat once held by the fighting populist Paul Wellstone, is shaking up the Washington establishment on behalf of regular folks. Instead of going-along-to-get-along, Franken is speaking bluntly about the raw judicial activism and corporate obsequiousness of the Supreme Court, led by Chief Justice John Roberts, a lifelong servant of the corporate agenda.
Manuel Pérez-Rocha’s OtherWords op-ed Misguided U.S. Economic Policies Drive Many Mexicans to Come Here is clearly a conversation-starter.
The latest OtherWords editorial package features an op-ed by Manuel Pérez-Rocha and a cartoon by Khalil Bendib about immigration.