Insight News

Feb 09th


American gun rights

The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that state and local governments can no longer restrict an individual’s right to own a firearm. However, the Court’s decision and supporting arguments left room for lawmakers to impose some restrictions on ownership and prevent easy access to guns while still protecting this basic right. In handing down its decision, the Court focused its attention on a case that challenged a 28-year-old Chicago ban on handguns. The decision is an extension of the Court’s 2008 ruling that the Second Amendment was not intended just for militias and did, in fact, extend to individuals.

While the ruling doesn’t guarantee cities will modify their gun ban laws, it does open the door for residents to legally challenge those laws and win. Officials in these cities, where there are high rates of gun crime, are upset and fear the Court’s decision will interfere with their ability to craft gun laws that reduce crime. That fear, however, may be unfounded. The Court made certain to note that the right to own a firearm is not the same as the right to possess and carry a firearm in any manner for whatever purpose. To that end, the Court does support restricting firearm ownership for felons and the mentally ill and encourages state and local efforts to close loopholes that allow individuals to purchase guns without a background check.

Federal immigration law needed

The federal government has moved forward with plans to sue the state of Arizona in an attempt to shut down its new immigration law, scheduled to go into effect on July 29.

The law, considered the country’s toughest immigration laws, gives police the right to detain immigrants if there is a reasonable suspicion that they are in the country illegally. Immigrants unable to produce documentation to show they are in the country legitimately will be arrested. The Justice Department has asked for an injunction to prevent the Arizona law from taking effect as planned; decisions on that request are expected in the next few weeks.


Independence and the right to private property

The right to private property was one of the central issues involved in the American Revolution.  The colonists’ cries of “taxation without representation” were but protests of what they saw as an unjust taking of private property.

The Declaration of Independence charges the King of England with engaging in 10 acts of abuse, of which half are offenses against private property.  Most significantly, the Declaration lists the pursuit of happiness as one of man’s primary inalienable rights.  The founders believed that liberty, happiness, and property were inextricably tied together.

Honoring Our Legacies

All of us have a responsibility to honor the leaders who came before us and paved our way. We have a special obligation to preserve the homes and other physical places that serve as a tangible connection between history and the next generation. Thousands of people who never had the privilege of meeting Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in person visit Atlanta every year to walk along Auburn Avenue, step inside the Heritage Sanctuary at Ebenezer Baptist Church, and tour the house at 501 Auburn where Dr. King was born. When they do, for a little while they have the chance to feel as if they were walking in Dr. King’s footsteps. There are many similar historical sites that play a key part in our shared story, and we need to support ongoing preservation attempts to keep these places—and the memories they hold—alive for our children and grandchildren.

Who should really be drug tested?

(NNPA) - Utah Senator Orrin Hatch has a proposal for the unemployed.  He wants them drug tested before they can receive unemployment benefits.  Hilarious!  With unemployment rates at 9.7 percent, with nearly six million Americans out of work for at least six months, with more than a million people without support since their unemployment benefits have run out, Hatch proposes drug testing for unemployed people.

He and some of his colleagues are actually the ones who need drug testing.  How could the Senate, by a vote of 57-42, prevent legislation that would have provided an unemployment benefit extension from moving forward?  What could they possibly have been thinking?  Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) described the action as “one of the worst moments I’ve seen in 25 years in the United States Senate.  In time of economic trouble, our country expects Democrats and Republicans to pull together.”  

Republican radicals reject unemployment fund extension

As part of the current unemployment crisis, at last look there were 453,000 claims for insurance, a number that is likely to surge when part-time government workers employed by the Census end their terms this summer.

Yet, there probably is no greater indication of the radical extreme to which Senate Republicans have become than to witness their rejection of legislation to extend unemployment benefits.  In the past, some Republicans supported such legislation to keep benefits flowing, but this time, their unanimous rejection killed it.  They were joined by Democrat Ben Nelson of Nebraska who I wish would change parties to clarify who he really represents.

The Commander-in-Chief: On post, in charge

Just because nowadays people can’t call you the N-word straight to your face doesn’t mean that covert, institutionalized and perpetual racism doesn’t exist in 2010.  African Americans spending time discussing whether comments by General Stanley McChrystal - quoted in Rolling Stone- were disrespectful of President Obama are missing a bigger picture.  No matter how Blacks try to rationalize his actions, truth is Barack Obama’s Presidency is in a system of imperialism and institutionalized racism.  No matter what names he’s called, Barack dances to the tune of an entrenched establishment order.
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