Biden’s plan is an effort to create fairness and equity when it comes to access to higher education.
Opinion: Joe Scarborough’s Ignorant Anti-Socialism Exposes Dangers of Conservative Ideology
Scarborough’s logic is exactly that which also enables the anti-vaccination movement and, frankly, movements to undermine democracy.
GOP Legislatures Invoke Civil Rights to Prevent Fictitious Vaccination ‘Mandates’
Why are republicans so opposed to COVID vaccines? Claiming it is "political" is reductive. Perhaps the motive is more insidious.
Opinion: Biden’s Support For Labor Unions Is Unprecedented Promotion Of Democracy Itself
When President Joe Biden recently voiced support for unions, encouraging workers at Amazon currently involved in a vote to unionize or not to take part in this process, Biden was really just standing up for democracy itself.
Decrying Same-Sex Marriage Decision, Justices Thomas and Alito Endorse Trump’s Assault on Civil Rights
Last Monday the Supreme Court of the United States declined to hear a case brought by Kim Davis, a former country clerk who, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in the Obergefell v. Hodges case legalizing same-sex marriage, who refused to issue certificates for such marriages because of her religious objections to them. She was sued and even jailed for this refusal and was appealing her case.
Trump-Barr-DeVos Triumvirate See Privatization As Backdoor Route To Destroying Civil Rights
Walking down Main Street, couples, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, cannot be legally denied the right to hold hands, share a hug, or kiss–if Main Street is part of the public square, that is.
Trump even Defies Supreme Court in Inflicting His Hate on Transgender Americans
The American people, polls indicate, have not been buying the bill of goods Donald Trump has been selling in his strenuous attempts to represent himself as the “law and order” candidate. They seem to understand Trump is the creator of chaos and the one disrespecting and defying the nation’s laws at every turn, not Biden.
John Lewis Appeals for National Redemption in Powerful Posthumous Article
John Lewis made one final appeal to the American people on Thursday in the form of an op-ed written before he passed away. The column was published on the day of his funeral.
The New York Times published the piece, entitled “Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation” on the very day the Civil Rights hero and Democratic congressman will be laid to rest.
“Though I am gone, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe,” the subheading reads.
“While my time here has now come to an end, I want you to know that in the last days and hours of my life you inspired me,” Lewis wrote.
“You filled me with hope about the next chapter of the great American story when you used your power to make a difference in our society.”
“Millions of people motivated simply by human compassion laid down the burdens of division. Around the country and the world you set aside race, class, age, language and nationality to demand respect for human dignity.”
Lewis’ final message to the country focused on racial justice, Civil Rights and the ongoing struggle for equality. He also called on Americans to rise the challenge.
“Though I may not be here with you, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe,” Lewis wrote.
“In my life I have done all I can to demonstrate that the way of peace, the way of love and nonviolence is the more excellent way. Now it is your turn to let freedom ring.”
“When historians pick up their pens to write the story of the 21st century, let them say that it was your generation who laid down
the heavy burdens of hate
Bittersweet Week in Supreme Court Underscores Trump’s Threat to Civil Rights and Basic Humanity
When Donald Trump appointed Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavannaugh to the Supreme Court bench, hopes certainly dimmed substantially for a court majority that would vigorously protect, much less expand, basic civil liberties, especially for women, LGBTQIA people, people of color, and immigrants.
Trans Lives Matter, Too: November 2020 Will be a Reckoning on Civil Rights for All
Amidst the recent mass nationwide uprisings, dominated by the sentiments of the Black Lives Matter movement, an effective reincarnation of the Civil Rights Movement, the Trump administration has continued its efforts to deny transgender people civil rights, denying them equal protections under the law.
Opinion: Does America Really Value Equality? What Women and Transgender People Might Say
The Supreme Court ruled in the Citizens United case that corporations merited certain rights of personhood. The decision in this case became crystallized in the notorious phrase, “Corporations are people.”
This year’s events insistently raise the question of which Americans enjoy the basic rights of personhood in America.
How are we doing when it comes to achieving our nation’s putative hallmark ideal of equality?
A reading of U.S. history we often hear tells the story of a nation that has thus far imperfectly realized its founding premise that “all men are created equal” but that has nonetheless been on an ongoing quest to achieve a fully egalitarian culture for all people, even and perhaps especially those that the initial formulation did not include in its reference to “all men.”
The cherished founding principle that “all men are created equal” animating the American experiment has obviously been vexed by realities of our national life and history, which stand undeniably in stark contradiction to that principle. The racism informing the practices of slavery and genocide present in U.S. history since the nation’s inception highlight the unrealized status of this value of equality.
But “we” the people still believe in it, right? We’re still just trying to figure it out, right?
It’s just that it is so hard to figure out, right?
While we could ask many constituencies, particularly people of color, how they are faring when it comes to equal rights, let’s take a quick look at women and transgender people might assess the national terrain in this regard.
In last November’s election, Democrats in Virginia flipped the state Senate and House of Delegates to gain full control of the state government for the first time since 1993. These election results have inspired hope that the state government will now become the 38th state to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), which passed the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives in 1972 and was quickly ratified by 22 states. Any constitutional amendment requires ratification by 38 states. The crawl toward reaching this number has been a slow one, with Nevada becoming the 36th state to ratify in 2017, followed shortly thereafter by Illinois. Last February, efforts in Virginia fell short by one vote in the House of Delegates. The votes now seem to be there.
But let’s also step back and get a little perspective. Here we are in 2019 still asking whether or not women—some half of our population—should enjoy equal rights or continue to be relegated to the status of second-class citizen.
Isn’t it strange, for a nation pretending to value equality, that we still ask this question, deferring equal rights to women?
Here’s the statement in the ERA this nation trembles to validate:
“Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of sex.”
Opinion: “Judicial Modesty” Is The New Legal Fig Leaf For Denying Civil Rights To LGBTQ Americans
While we don’t yet know how the Supreme Court will decide the major civil rights question before it regarding whether or not gay and transgender people are protected under federal legislation that outlaws employment discrimination “on the basis of sex,” the nature of the debates and the questions raised from the bench last week when attorneys for both sides presented arguments do not reflect well on this nation’s supposed commitment to civil rights.
At a minimum, it’s fair to say it’s no slam dunk that the Supreme Court will arrive at ruling that endows LGBTQ Americans with the basic civil rights that American ideals, especially those ideals people, particularly African Americans, took to the streets for in the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s, pose as fundamental liberties for all.
At worst, the court may very well be poised to ratify—and likely further unleash through its endorsement—rampant and hostile discrimination against people simply for how they choose to love and define their sexual and gender identity. While this case centers on employment discrimination, thus entailing grave consequences for LGBTQ people’s abilities to earn a living, a ruling that denied their civil rights would surely have ramifications well beyond the workplace and economy, serious as those elements are. Just as Trump’s virulent and loudly expressed racism has resulted in exponential increases in white nationalist and other racist violence against people of color and Jewish people, it seems to fair to expect that if the highest court in our land endorses discrimination against LGBTQ people, that a similar uptick in violence against them will likely occur.
What was most underlined in the back and forth between the justices and the attorneys is that extension of civil rights to all Americans is still in question.
Let’s underline that: Civil Rights have not been embraced by the United States for all members of society.
And that the Supreme Court is pondering and scratching its collective head about whether civil rights should be extended to all members of society is absolutely troubling.
The justices are actually wondering if it is just to have a group of second-class citizens.
We need to continue to point out this fact. And we should explore and make clear the warped reasoning coming from these supposedly prized intellects and dazzling legal minds, as I’ve done elsewhere.
For the court, the crux of the matter seemed to be whether the word “sex” in the 1964 Civil Rights Act could be construed as incorporating sexual orientation and gender identity—did it just refer to distinctions between “male” and “female,” or does it include distinctions between “gay” and “straight”?
Justice Samuel Alito at one point responded to attorney Pamela Karlan, representing two of the plaintiffs,
“You’re trying to change the meaning of what Congress understood sex to mean in 1964.”
How Civil Rights History Can Guide Democrats in Impeachment Decision
We need to know, and the nation’s knowing depends on Congress taking the lead, not waiting for the people's will to catch up.History shows that’s not how we realize our ideals and uphold the Constitution.
Roman J. Israel, Esquire, a Film that Connects Us to Our Radical Past to Challenge Trump’s Malevolence
Dan Gilroy’s 2017 film Roman J. Israel, Esquire, starring Denzel Washington and still lingering in theaters, has either been critically panned or just plain overlooked.
DHS Goes After First and Fourth Amendments With Expanded Social Media Surveillance
The DHS is ready to put digital Star of David armbands on every immigrant, and every naturalized American, according to Buzzfeed.
From Rauner to Trump, GOP Practices Politics of Erasure
The problem is, again, that those constituents you and I might call people, the GOP, federally and at the state level, have decided are “not even people.”
Jeff Sessions Makes An Unbelievable Promise to Protect Civil Rights For All Communities
On Thursday, Attorney-General Jeff Sessions told Federal Prosecutors he is committed to prosecuting hate crimes. Why don’t I believe him?
During Sessions’ speech he pledged “to protect the civil rights of all Americans — and we will not tolerate the targeting of any community in our country” I feel so much better about the rise in hate crimes since the election. No, I don’t. It’s because the evidence contradicts his words. The context is in reference to a successful prosecution of a hate crime in Mississippi where a transgender woman was murdered.
And according to Josh Gerstein, Sessions “reached out to make sure the Justice Department is making every effort to assist in the investigations into a string of transgender killings in recent months.”
Certainly one can acknowledge the importance and value of recognizing that crimes against transgender people because they are transgender qualify as hate crimes and should be prosecuted as such.
Yet, I can’t bring myself to take Sessions at his word, perhaps in part because of the Republican obsession with bathroom policy and conversion therapy. But it doesn’t end there.
Seriously, when an Attorney-General says they will protect the civil rights of all Americans, one should be able to take them at their word. Yet, that’s a tall order when it comes to Jeff Sessions – the man who was cool with the KKK until he found out members smoked pot.
This is the same Jeff Sessions whose bid for a seat on the Federal bench failed largely, if not exclusively, because he not only tolerated the targeting of some communities, he led the targeting.
In 1986, Coretta Scott King wrote a letter explaining why she believed Sessions lacked the temperament, judgement and fairness to be a judge. The man she talked about targeted certain communities for doing nothing more than registering to vote.
Mr. Sessions has used the awesome powers of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters. For this reprehensible conduct, he should not be rewarded with a federal judgeship.
As Buzzfeed reported at the time, Scott-King’s letter wasn’t entered into the record by Strom Thurmond, the committee chair at the time.
Since becoming Attorney-General, Sessions’ actions directly contradict a statement that few would quarrel with. “No person should have to fear being violently attacked because of who they are, what they believe, or how they worship.”
Yet, Sessions joins Trump in an effort to erase the very existence of the Obama Administration. One of his first acts was to issue a memo vowing to review everything – including consent decrees.
In a powerfully written article he wrote in April,
Pro-Life Justice Neil Gorsuch Votes For Death in Capital Punishment Case
In a sign of votes to come Justice Neil Gorsuch set aside his regard for human life and cast his vote to deny the stay of execution for death-row inmates in Arkansas.
Opinion: Federal Appeals Court Rules it Is Illegal To Fire People Because They’re Gay
No one should be fired for being lesbian, gay, or transgender like happened to me and it’s incredibly powerful to know that the law now protects me and other LGBT workers.”
Opinion: North Carolina’s Bathroom Bill Repeal Is Sham
“This ‘deal’ does NOT repeal HB2. It’s HB2 dressed up in a way desperate lawmakers hope will save the state’s economy. There will be consequences for Dem and Rep alike.
Opinion: Trump Unleashes Hell By Rescinding Transgender Kids’ Protection
By following evangelical preachers’ edict to legalize discrimination against school-age children, Trump unleashed his theocrats and set a dangerous precedent.
Trump Administration Strips LGBTQ Rights Just Days After Sessions Confirmation
After only three weeks of this new administration, the fears of the LGBTQ community are becoming a reality.
Al Franken’s Dramatic Exposure of Sessions’ Civil Rights Record Gets Crickets
Through his questioning, Senator Al Franken exposed Jeff Sessions’ lies about his civil rights record in his questionnaire to the committee.
Too Racist to Be Federal Judge in 80s, Jeff Sessions to be Trump’s Attorney General
"I told you the shit show would become so intense that the Bannon fiasco would soon seem like distant memory."
In a Microcosm of National Politics, Bigotry May Cost Republicans Dearly in North Carolina
"I wouldn’t vote for anybody that does something like that. The logic, I just can’t figure it out at all. It’s not comprehensible for me. It’s just too stupid.”
Civil Rights Museum Rejects Trump for Being Aggressive, Rude and Racist
The approach, the disrespect, and bullying to use the museum was inappropriate and reflective of the insensitivity [to] civil and human rights reflective of Trump over the years.
Racist Republicans Crusade To Keep Dr. Martin Luther King’s Dream Unfulfilled
Despite the Civil Rights Movement, racism is as rampant in America as it was when Dr. King marched and revealed his dream.
Dirty Liar Charles Koch Campaigns As An Advocate For the Poor
The only regard Charles or David Koch have for the poor is keeping them in poverty and subjugated to the rich at any cost
Texas Republicans Violate The Constitution By Denying Citizenship To US Born Hispanic Children
Texas has been violating the 14th amendment, by refusing to issue birth certificates to American-born children of undocumented immigrants.
Racist Republican Leadership Absent From 50th Anniversary of Selma
One group that was glaringly absent from Selma on Saturday was any substantial representation of racist Republicans; most notably Republican leaders in Congress.
Racists Demand Punishment For African Americans Exercising First Amendment Rights
For decent Americans it is beyond comprehension that it is acceptable for white supremacists, whether they are St. Louis-area cops or owners of a sports bar, to demand that African Americans suffer punishment for exercising their constitutional rights.
Texas Legislator’s Biblical Proposal Abolishes Constitutional Equal Rights
Republicans and religious conservatives detest the 14th Amendment for myriad reasons, but chief among them is the guarantee of equal rights for Americans not in the biblical mold championed by Neo Christians; single mothers, atheists, Muslims, non-compliant Christians, and particularly gays.
Eric Holder Calls Out the Rampant Subtle Racism in American Culture
In Holder's commencement speech, he noted that racially-motivated outburst from the likes of Cliven Bundy and Donald Sterling were much less of a threat to equality than the more subtle, everyday racism such as what he sees in the criminal justice system.
King Ended the Reign of Terror So Now It’s Time For the Truth About White Privilege
White people have largely ended violence. Now, it is time for telling the truth about privilege and facing what it means to lose it.
Conservatives Call For The Lynching of President Obama
A racist conservative Facebook group "America the next generation" created a photo-shopped image of President Barack Obama with a hangman's noose around his neck.
Water Fountains: Memories From the Jim Crow South Remain Vivid In a Cartoonist’s Mind
Those of us who were destined to become cartoonists started remembering visual images at a very early age. Those images are often the source of certain cartoons.
For Many Americans There is Little To Be Thankful For On Thanksgiving
There are plenty of things for all Americans to be thankful for, but sadly, a substantial segment of the population has little reason to be grateful on this official "day of thanksgiving."
The Mainstream Media Continues to Ignore Rampant Republican Fueled Racism
Instead of a public outcry against blatant racism, main stream media failed to report the story on every evening newscast across the country.
Obama Understands Thomas Jefferson Better Than So Called Republican Patriots
Obama clearly understood the need to remind Americans of Jefferson's words at the beginning of his speech, and it is evident that Republicans need to be reminded that "all men are created equal."
Republicans Are Doing Their Best to Kill Dr. King’s Dream
It's good that Dr. King is not around to see his dream set back 50 years because it is contrary to Republicans and their supporters' dream who still judge a man by the color of his skin
Note to Republicans: Americans Know Not to Trade Cookies For Their Civil Rights
The American people are not stupid, and can't be tricked by Republicans carrying plates of cookies into giving up their civil rights.
White House Petition calls for Civil Rights Charges Against George Zimmerman
A new White House petition is requesting prosecution of George Zimmerman for depriving Trayvon Martin of his constitutional rights of life and liberty.
Free Speech Is an Unclear Concept to the Tea Party
Like most things including the second amendment, the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party has a special way of understanding those other provisions - especially the first amendment.
Why Recognizing Marriage Equality Shouldn’t be Left to the States
Roger Gorley and Allen Mansell's story shows that being in a socially recognized committed relationship extends way beyond the equivalent of a corporate merger.
Rob Portman Continued Casting Anti-Gay Votes Long After His Son Came Out
No one denies that Portman loves his son, but the senator continued casting anti-gay votes long after his son revealed he was gay.
Conservatives and Religious Fanatics Demand that Gay-Hate Remain a Part of Boy Scout Policy
The gay-hate being defended by the right is not part of the Boy Scout's motto or any of Christ's teachings, and fortunately, there are Boy Scouts and "real" Christians who have finally figured it out.
If Elected Romney Promises to Borkize the Supreme Court
Mitt Romney gave us ample warning of what he would do to the Supreme Court's balance when he chose Robert Bork as the head of his judicial advisory team.
Extremists Listen to Republican Rhetoric and Prepare for Race War Against Obama
America is fracturing apart and when these heavily-armed groups begin shooting it is all down to Republicans inciting opposition to President Obama and violence against the government.
Romney’s Fail Causes Conservative Call to Vote for Ron Paul for Jesus
On the heels of Romney failing to consummate his relationship with conservatives properly, they are calling on their fellow Republicans to vote third party for Jesus.
The Republican Platform Aims at a Time Before the Constitution
Republicans don’t want to take back our country; they want to take our country back, back to a time before the United States, before the Constitution to the unworkable Articles of Confederation, to pre-Constitutional religious intolerance and oppression of minorities and of women.
The Media Drops The Ball With Same Sex Marriage Moral Equivalence Argument
The media hasn't gone far enough in arguing against a referendum on same-sex marriage in New Jersey.
Chris Christie’s Dangerous Attack on the U.S. Constitution
The U.S. Constitution was written by 55 men and signed by 39, but Chris Christie says 121 men and women can't give New Jersey a marriage law
Chris Christie Endorses the Popular Tyranny Founding Fathers Feared
Chris Christie has shown himself to be a proponent of the popular tyranny the Founding Fathers feared and wrote the Constitution to address
As Simple As Black and White: The GOP’s Secessionist Dream
It has been 150 years since the Confederacy of Southern States seceded from the United States of America starting the deadliest war in American history. It should be a time to reflect on the disastrous turn of events that ripped America apart with a view toward never taking that terrible path again, but instead, some southern states are celebrating secession with balls and celebrations. As if celebrating America's darkest times wasn't bad enough, new talk of secession and nullification signals a long standing hatred of the United States of America by racists in the South, and the hate is spreading across the country.
Americans Are Less Opposed to Same-Sex Marriage, Poll Shows
"The shift in opinion on same-sex marriage has been broad-based, occurring across many demographic, political and religious groups," Pew announces.