Beyond the Rhetoric: An inside look at our rotten prison system
Monday, 23 September 2013 13:47
Harry C. Alford NNPA Columnist
In the interest of full disclosure, I have a bachelor's degree in Correctional Administration from the University of Wisconsin. During the summer of 1969, I did my required internship at the Wisconsin School for Girls in Oregon, Wis. These were underage offenders who were found guilty of petty crimes or "bad behavior." My ambition was to change bad human behavior into honorable behavior. The curriculum I was reading promoted the best models of rehabilitation. I was so pumped but the internship showed me the reality of our system of corrections.
Raising Minnesota's minimum wage to $9.50 an hour would mean a raise for 360,000 working Minnesotans and would mean significant gains in purchasing power for women and people of color, according to a soon-to-be released Jobs Now Coalition report.
It's time for Minnesota to join the ranks of other progressive states and raise the minimum wage to a level that respects a worker's right to be able to pay for basic expenses after a hard week's work.
This seems obvious, right? We've got a Democratic controlled legislature and a popular enough Democratic governor who've both expressed a desire to see the wage floor rise.
Tuesday, 17 September 2013 12:52
Mel Duncan Founding Director Nonviolent Peaceforce
During my visit to Syria and Lebanon last May, I met with representatives of the Syrian government, religious leaders, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, Hezzbolah, the nonviolent opposition, the Free Syrian Army and the UN. Most importantly I talked with refugees in Lebanon and internally displaced people in rebel held territories in Syria.
Nobody asked me, but since young folk everywhere are heading back to school, my thoughts turn to that pesky "achievement gap."
I had the opportunity, earlier this year, to do some work for the Center for School Change and, indirectly, the Minnesota State Department of Education. In so doing, I learned a lot about Dual Credit Programs that are available to high school students beginning as early as 9th grade.
Tuesday, 17 September 2013 12:30
Marian Wright Edelman
These are the words of an 18-year-old who recently graduated from high school in a high-poverty neighborhood in the nation's capital: "Where I live, which is Ward 7, everyone is the same . . . If you follow the crowd, you're going to end up dead or in jail because that's where most of them are. But if you're a leader and you make your own decisions, then you can set your path for life."
Two years ago when the war started in Syria, I saw my husband, my friend at the time, losing his hair by the handfuls because of the stress of watching the war in his country from overseas.
A year and a half ago he couldn't take not knowing the real situation in Syria. Despite my worry, he went to Syria; he and told me on our broken phone conversations that all was "OK" but it wasn't good in remote areas. This is my story. This is one story out of millions.
Pete Rhodes, chairman, Urban Mass Media Group, executive director, Black Music America Network. Carol Maillard, Sweet Honey in the Rock. Karen L. Charles, artistic director, Threads Dance Project. Phyllis Gilliam, Sunday's Best.