Amandla is a Xhosa and Zulu word that means ‘power’. Many of us who live outside of African nations first heard the word used as a rallying cry during the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. It was also during that time, many of us who were coming of age became aware of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela — who, at age 95, after spending much of his life being the greatest embodiment of peace and non-violent resistance.… [Read more]
What issues change society's social order? Here we discuss social progress and the issues that impede that progress such as poverty, negative impacts upon the environment, and disparities among peoples.
In the recent week there have been a number of articles touching on the wearing of blackface for Halloween and its appropriateness, or rather inappropriateness. And in reading the comments posted by many it dawned on me not how many Caucasian Americans are still covert racists (I don’t need to read an article to know that) but, rather, how many not only have no knowledge of American history but understanding of Sociology 101.… [Read more]
Throughout rural China, controversial land acquisitions have been taking place since 2009, often without consent of or compensation to the local residents. In an effort to continually expand China’s growing cities, the Party has been forcibly acquiring land in the surrounding rural areas. Here we would call this eminent domain, and most of the victims of this process are pretty angry, but China has allowed things to go to a whole new level.… [Read more]
It’s almost October 1st, and you know what that means: Obamacare is almost officially in action. The conservatives are very upset about the legislation actually making it out into the real world, despite their many, many efforts to stop it in its tracks. What is it that they’re so scared of? Is it the free preventative care, no lifetime limits on insurance coverage, or the removal of the last vestiges of the pre-exisiting conditions clause?… [Read more]
Charter schools have been in the news recently. This is due in large part to Tiana Parker, an adorable 7-year-old in Tulsa who was unceremoniously sent home the second week of school for violating her school’s dress code policy, which labeled dreadlocks and afros – hairstyles natural to black children – as “faddish.”
After a public outcry, the board of Deborah Brown Community School, Tulsa’s first charter, rescinded the policy. … [Read more]
I had a chance to read FAIL: How the Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline Flunks the Climate Test, a recent report issued by the Sierra Club and Oil Change International and endorsed by a dozen other environmental organizations. The 17-page report makes a rock solid case that “constructing Keystone XL will lead to tar sands industry expansion, and tar sands industry expansion will significantly exacerbate climate pollution.… [Read more]
A recent poll found that the majority of Christians think smoking pot is morally acceptable, and a group of pastors recently had a conference focusing on the decriminalization of drugs.
Not only is marijuana becoming more acceptable legally, it’s becoming more acceptable dogmatically, as well. A recent poll by the Public Religion Research Institute found that only 23% of Christians think that smoking pot is a sin, a dramatic change in thinking from just a few years ago.… [Read more]
Almost as soon as New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed in to law a ban on gay to straight conversion therapy for children under the age of 18 in his state, the conservative lobbyists flew in to action. Spearheading the movement behind their unfounded complaints is a group known as Liberty Counsel. This organization has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Camden, N.J.… [Read more]
You are welcome to participate in The Interfaith Freedom March on Monday, September 16th 2013. The group will set out at 1:30 pm at the Main Square, Abu Baker Street, Jenin, West Bank, Middle East.… [Read more]
Tokyo Electric Power Company, the parent company of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, admitted this week that they have been unable to halt the damage done to the plant by the disaster in 2011 and are currently unable to control the leakage of contaminated waste water into the ocean. The announcement comes after more than two years of denial and inept handling of the disaster and the necessary recovery and repair that should have followed.… [Read more]
Last year, there was news of possible closure of World’s Biggest Bookstore in Toronto, Canada, in 2013 due to a lease expiration in December. Whether the lease is renewed or not, the bookstore continues to be the venue of major book events with the August 31st event a big day on the store’s events calendar.… [Read more]
Last Saturday at the Missouri State Fair—a state funded, family-oriented, purportedly non-political event—an unexpected guest was invited into the rodeo rink. Once the grounds had been cleared, the announcer, then-Cowboy Association President Mark Ficken, introduced “President Obama:” a rodeo clown wearing a mask of his likeness, parading around like a living parody.
Mr. Ficken went on to taunt the city slicker “President” with these words:
“We’re gonna stomp Obama now…as soon as their bull comes out, Obama don’t you move.… [Read more]
Just in time for the 68th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Choubunsha Publishing Company has released a new and updated version of “Barefoot Gen”, a bilingual edition of the graphic novel that will now be told in both Japanese and English. This highly acclaimed manga was written and illustrated by A-bomb survivor Keiji Nakazawa.… [Read more]
In a park in Glendale, CA, a new memorial statue was unveiled this week. The park is in a largely Asian and Asian-American neighborhood and will feature the image of a young Korean girl dressed in traditional clothing. The problem? This girl is a “comfort woman.”
The issue of comfort women (as they are commonly referred to by historians) dates back to pre-WWII times and is still hotly contested today, more vocally than at any other time previously.… [Read more]
It’s the first of August which means that the Back to School sales have been in full force for about three weeks now.
For parents of school-aged kids this means they are busy filling the Back to School lists that teachers have sent home; some even have supply lists from the teachers. For teachers this means getting into our classrooms and making lists.… [Read more]
Californians in the Encinitas Union School District recently attempted to ban yoga from physical education (PE) in public schools because of its religious origin. It sounds silly, but keeping religion out of the classroom has become an increasingly valued part of upholding religious freedom in Americans schools.
Here in America
Often when religion makes an appearance in the public sphere and becomes embroiled in legal difficulties we expect to find the ACLU and people who are considered to be ‘angry, politically correct atheists‘ behind it.… [Read more]
Many of us face language barriers on a daily basis. For most of us in the U.S., English is our “birth” language so we don’t have a hard time with it. However, English is a difficult language to learn so someone coming to our country may face numerous language-based challenges. We need to be aware of that and compensate for it, and not hold it against that person because that’s wrong.… [Read more]
This is a post about history, geography, military secrets, beer, racism and religion. I know you’re thinking and wondering how I’m going to meld those topics together. Well, read on for the answers…
History. Many years ago, well about 57 or so, the US Coast Guard gave me an all expense paid trip to Ebeye Island.… [Read more]
“Oh, but you who philosophize disgrace and criticize all fears
Bury the rag deep in your face
For now’s the time for your tears.”
“The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carol” ~ Bob Dylan
When President Barack Obama was elected, I heard southerners wonder aloud if he was going to enslave white people just as white people enslaved black people for hundreds of years. … [Read more]
While visiting my friend today, I was witness to an unpleasant situation that had been unfolding before her for hours prior to my arrival. This friend works on the social media end of an international corporation. This company is associated with a celebrity who has an opinion on the verdict of the Martin/Zimmerman trial. The opinion as I read it wasn’t explicitly violent or incendiary, however because it appeared on the internet a veritable shit-storm quickly arose.… [Read more]