Positively 4th Street Revisited

I wish that for just one time You could stand inside my shoes And just for that one moment I could be you

Yes, I wish that for just one time You could stand inside my shoes You’d know what a drag it is To see you.

A friend of mine told me that when she was on a dating website, conservative Republican men would contact her despite the note in her profile that she was a liberal thinker who isn’t interested in a Mary Matlin, James Carville type of relationship.… [Read more]

This day in history: LBJ signed the Voting Rights Act (Video)

On this day in 1965, President Lyndon Baines Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act of 1965 into law. The law was a landmark piece of national legislation that prohibited discrimination in voting.

The Voting Rights Act established extensive oversight over the administration of elections, and it provided that states and local governments with a history of discriminatory voting practices could not implement any change affecting voting without first going through pre clearance, i.e., the process of obtaining the approval of the Department of Justice before changes were made.… [Read more]

Decisions, decisions, decisions…and politics

I’m putting a new ceiling on our porch and the photo shows what I’m doing. Now, you ask yourself, “What does his porch ceiling have to do with decisions and politics?” Be patient and read on for the answer.

Our old porch ceiling needed replacement so I checked on what I believed were suitable materials that would give me the effect my wife and I wanted.… [Read more]

Streets of Fire

Given all of the social unrest we’ve witnessed both domestically and abroad, this week’s  “Say It In Song” pick is a 1978 Bruce Springsteen hit from his album “Darkness on the Edge of Town”: Streets of Fire.

This is dedicated to all of those people who walk streets of fire to protest against broken promises made by elected officials.… [Read more]

SCOTUS and Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act: It’s Up to Congress

The Supreme Court has decided to halt use of a key part of the landmark Voting Rights Act. Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the voting rights decision and, effectively, the Court is leaving the decision about voting rights up to Congress by saying that legislators can draft another, more modern formula for voting rights. This action is a blow to all of those people who have defended the right to vote through this Act since at least 1965.… [Read more]

April 1st, 2013. A day of miracles!…(?)

A few near-miraculous events have taken place today. This April 1st is one for the history books!

The War on Women has been declared over. The men of the Republican party, joined by a few blue dog Democrats and Republican women, announced that they realised that unless they begin attending medical school in droves, any woman’s uterus is none of their business.… [Read more]

Racial Entitlement

During oral arguments on a provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia likened congressional support for the Act to a “perpetuation of racial entitlement.” Just what was Scalia saying? Was he saying black people do not have a right to have their vote protected?

When I hear “racial entitlement” I think of the first 350 years in this land and the fact white people were entitled to everything — jobs, education, social mobility, protection, pride, land and status — and black people were entitled to nothing.… [Read more]

Some Senators get it, but some on the SCOTUS don’t: Voting Rights are Crucial

New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand sent this e-mail today, hoping that the citizens of her state, and citizens around the nation, will take action:

The Supreme Court’s oral arguments on the Voting Rights Act begin today.

We have to speak up in support of this landmark civil rights act now. There’s no time for silence. Not when a strike to this civil rights law would cause serious harm to our democracy.[Read more]

Voting Rights and the SCOTUS

Election day is months behind us but the issue of voting rights has once again become a ‘hot topic’. Tomorrow, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the Voting Rights Act case, Shelby County v. Holder. At issue in this case is whether the decision made by Congress in 2006 to reauthorise one portion of the Act in particular, Section 5, has exceeded its authority under the 14th and 15th amendments (equal protection and voting privileges), thereby violating the 10th amendment (state sovereignty) of the U.S.… [Read more]

Local Issues with National Impact

It has been said that politics is a local issue. Given all the attention being paid to this crucial presidential election, it should be remembered that many of the issues affecting us take place on the national level but, as we have seen over the past nearly 4 years of the Obama administration, it is the state-level politicians — the senators and congressmen — who have the ability to support or block efforts that affect the entire nation.… [Read more]

The Supreme Court, Its Relation To The Election, and You

The Supreme Court started a new term this week and it is being argued that this may in fact be one of the most important sessions in over 60 years. After a three-month recess which began after the last session upheld the Affordable Care Act — which included the divisive Individual Mandate — the Supreme Court has released its list of potential cases.… [Read more]