Insight News

Wednesday
Jul 29th

Commentary

Sell-outs at the NAACP

For decades the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People fought the good fight against racial discrimination.  The organization was instrumental in defeating Jim Crow and discrimination in the work-place; it led the charge in establishing voting rights for all and equal access to quality education.   Even now the NAACP does some good work in local communities. However, as a national civil-rights organization, it has lost its way. 

In his seminal book, “The Souls of Black Folk,” NAACP co-founder, W.E.B. Dubois describes awakening to a morning “when men ask of the workmen, not ‘Is he white?’ but ‘Can he work?’  When men ask artists, not ‘Are they black?’ but ‘Do they know?’” 
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It's time to talk about reparation


I been down so long
That it looks like up to me

– Lyrics Black blues song

Barack Obama has publicly opposed reparations to the descendants of slaves since he stepped onto center stage American politics.  The nation's first Black President has sought to be politically neutral and not be seen as pandering to Blacks.  Barack Obama has gone from podium to podium taking the position that “government can combat the legacy of slavery by improving schools, health care and the economy for all”.
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Clean Haiti's water


Shortly after the new year began, Haiti was hit by a devastating earthquake that killed more than 200,000 people and left more than one million homeless. The promise of help came from around the world: individuals donated what they could and richer nations, including our own, pledged millions of dollars in support. Unfortunately, a significant number of those commitments have not been met. As the anniversary of the earthquake approaches, Haiti is still a broken country. To make matters worse, the tiny nation is battling a disease outbreak that, under better conditions, would be simple to treat.

Cases of cholera began popping up in rural Haiti in early October. Cholera is a disease that causes intestinal distress in its victims: vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain. These symptoms can lead to dehydration; if not treated, an infected person could die. And that’s just what’s been happening in Haiti. To date, there have been over 3,000 cases of the disease and more than 250 deaths.
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Fed-up with the Transportation Safety Administration

I arrived at the Los Angeles Airport more than an hour early.  I had made good time on the highway.  I wasn’t checking any bags, so with my boarding pass in hand I proceeded to the gate.  I was greeted with a security line that was almost an hour long.  The line snaked around the terminal, out the door, and stretched down the sidewalk.  At the front of the line sat a lone Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) officer studiously checking identification with a jeweler’s loupe, the small magnifying glass jewelers use to look for flaws in gemstones.

It is little wonder that polls consistently find that the TSA is the most hated U.S. government agency, even more despised than the Internal Revenue Service.  Americans believe that the TSA is rude, invasive, obnoxious, and dull-witted.  Sure, there are good, honest, hard-working folks employed with the TSA; I have met some of them.  However, I tend to share the negative assessment that airport security is not firing on all cylinders.
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Why we must vote on Nov. 2nd 2010

There is no question that everyone who is able should vote in each election and especially in this Tuesday November 2nd Mid Term Election. But for African Americans, the stakes are higher than they have ever been. Higher because the American political process has moved from resisting the Black vote as many did before the Voting Rights Act of the 1960s to a lack of concern over Black voter participation because of a greater concern over the Latino and Asian votes. Why? Because these o groups have demonstrated an interest and seriousness about participation in the political process as a means of getting leverage and respect that African Americans once had.  It appears that with the election of President Obama, a number of African Americans assumed that “we” have arrived and decided to take a vacation from the struggle. Unfortunately, this is the same time that conservative “White American” decided that the Economic Stimulus, Health Care Reform, Bail Outs and Job Assistance for the Unemployed are all socialist programs intended to undermine America and that such change, at the hands of a Black man represented more than this nation could stand. 
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Letter to the editor: Save KBEM

Whatever the fate of North High School (which I attended 1951-54), every effort must be made to save KBEM/88.5, one of the nation's few remaining all-jazz stations which is housed at North. As we long-time KBEM members and volunteers well know, KBEM not only is the main source in this area of all genres of broadcast jazz, but the station also trains North and other MPS students in on-air broadcasting and other radio techniques. The North library contains a special section of valuable jazz books and recordings donated by KBEM and its supporters and available to students and the community.

If North cannot be KBEM's permanent home, efforts must begin now to find an alternate location, in another MPS school or perhaps a college, university or community center.
We must avoid at all costs a repeat of the tragic end of WCAL a few years ago when a misguided college board sold the license to MPR.

Those interested in learning more about how they can help KBEM may contact station manager Michele Jansen at michele.jansen@mpls.k12.mn.us.


End gay discrimination

The United States is suffering from an identity crisis when it comes to the rights and safety of homosexuals and lesbians. On the one hand, the government says it respects the rights of gays to live as domestic partners, to be free from violence and to work in whatever field they choose, even the military.  Yet, the government seems to do very little – and even contradicts itself – when it comes to making these ideas reality.
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