Insight News

Feb 07th


Letter to the editor:

There are over 350,000 working Minnesota families that have children in child care. Quality affordable child care is essential to assure parents that their child has a strong foundation in their early years. High quality child care improves cognitive ability, school readiness and the social behavior of the children in each and every licensed home in the State.

Deamonte Driver’s Continuing Legacy

Four years ago this February, an entire community was devastated in Prince George’s County, Maryland, just outside Washington, D.C., when 12-year-old seventh grader Deamonte Driver died after complications from a tooth abscess. His mother Alyce, who worked at low-paying jobs, had searched for a dentist to treat Deamonte’s toothache who would accept Medicaid, but she was unsuccessful. Ultimately, Alyce took Deamonte to a hospital emergency room, where he was given medicine for a headache, sinusitis, and a dental abscess and sent home. But his condition soon took a turn for the worse, and he was back at the hospital being rushed to surgery where it was discovered that bacteria from his abscessed tooth had spread to his brain. Heroic efforts were made to save him, including two operations and eight weeks of additional care and therapy totaling about $250,000, but it was all too late. Deamonte died on February 25, 2007—when his life could have been saved by a routine dental visit and an $80 tooth extraction.

Health plan the right direction for state

Last year President Obama made history with the passage of the Affordable Care Act, bringing health care to millions of uninsured Americans and guaranteeing preexisting conditions are covered. The Affordable Care Act is reaping benefits already in Minnesota with the implementation of early Medical Assistance, which will cover 90,000 Minnesotans while easing our state budget strain.

While we are moving in the right direction on health care, there is more we can do in Minnesota. I believe all Minnesotans should have access to quality, affordable health care. I also believe we need a health care system that can deliver on this goal without breaking the state bank for education, public safety, and many other vital services.

The Arab youth revolution... a bad year for dictators

The Arab youth revolution... a bad year for dictators“There is no doubt that mathematics and astronomy owe a great debt to the Arabs,” wrote George Sarton a Harvard historian of science in his introduction to the history of science. It all started more than 1,000 years ago, in the Ninth century to be exact. An Arab genius named Musa al-Khawazmi, while the west was living the dark age, went to India to study their science.  There he took a hard look at the Indian sifr (zero), which had been used mainly as an empty ring for calculation convenience.   al-Khawazmi then came back home and introduced what is now used and known in the west as Arab numerals and the concept of zero, which resulted in a scientific revolution where algebra and computer science have been built until today.  Without the Arab zero, there wouldn’t be a digital and social Network, there wouldn’t be Facebook and there wouldn’t be an Arab revolution.

And Arab dictators wouldn’t have been doing what they have been doing for years: squandering Arab wealth and brutalizing their own people.

Stand strong and reject union busting

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has set off a fire storm among the state's unions and public employees.  To compound matters other states are proposing similar laws and will soon have to deal with their own revolts.  Walker, in the name of balancing the state budget, has proposed legislation that will essentially deny public employees their collective bargaining rights and increase their payments to the state's healthcare and pension plans.

Parents, elders preserve and prepare

The distinguished theologian Howard Thurman once described an oak tree in his childhood yard with leaves that each autumn turned yellow and died but stayed on the branches all winter. Nothing—neither wind, storm, sleet, nor snow—dislodged these dead leaves from the apparently lifeless branches.  Dr. Thurman came to understand that the business of the oak tree during the long winter was to hold on to the dead leaves before turning them loose in spring so that new buds—the growing edge—could begin to unfold.  At winter's end, what wind, storm, sleet, or snow could not force off passed quietly away to become the tree's nourishment.

African American economy suffers disproportionately

(BLACK PR WIRE) –A new analysis by Bread for the World Institute shows that African Americans continue to suffer disproportionately from hunger, poverty, unemployment, and income and education disparities when compared to the total U.S. population.

“The economic recession has left African-Americans struggling in the past couple of years,” said the Rev. Derrick Boykin, northeast regional organizer for Bread for the World. “But the truth is, African Americans had been suffering from ‘recession-like’ conditions long before the recession hit the rest of the country.”
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