President Obama Delivers His Valedictory State of the Union

On the night that Barack Obama first won election to the White House, he announced to a cheering crowd, "Change has come to America."  In 2008, millions of Americans weary of a deep recession, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan hoped, and Obama promised a new spirit of optimism and bipartisan cooperation: ...more
Hi Dr. Pearson! Great summary. I couldn't agree more that Pres. Obama "got more of his agenda ...more

My Philadelphia Neighborhood is Getting Ready for Pope Francis

Last week, I was in Brooklyn, New York, and I got into a conversation with an employee of the New York City Metropolitan Transit Authority about Pope Francis' upcoming visit to the United States. I was incredulous when he asked, "When is he coming to New York? Is he coming to Philly first and then going to New York, or is it the other way around?" ...more
professorkim Sounds fun. I will venture in the area to see what is happening. However, the ...more

Obama Just Hit the FCC Hard on Net Neutrality

President Barack Obama made a strong statement in support of rules preserving open access to the Internet this week. It brought cheers from net neutrality advocates, jeers from the cable and telecom industry and their allies, and equivocation from the man he appointed to lead the Federal Communications Commission, the independent agency that makes the rules for the Internet. ...more
Everybody who has a computer or smartphone should support net neutrality. The carriers don't ...more

How Parents and Teachers Should Teach Children About Slavery

[Editor's Note: Is the history of slavery in America something that can be taught in elementary schools? I wish there were a simple answer for that. In two separate incidents during the past month -- in Georgia and New York -- public school teachers have been in the news for assigning math problems which flippantly mentioned slaves, asking children to do arithmetic involving beatings, whippings, and deaths. And the most ironic part? February is Black History Month. ...more
I am a parent of a 4 year old and her pre-school class has been learning about slavery as part ...more

What's Missing in the Feminist Debate Over Michelle Obama?

Just before Barack Obama's second inaugural last week, an article appeared in the Style section of the Washington Post bearing the headline, "Four years later, feminists split by Michelle Obama's 'work' as first lady." In the article, veteran reporter Lonnae O'Neall Parker presented evidence of a racial divide among feminists over Michelle Obama's adoption of the sobriquet "Mom-In-Chief," as well as her adoption ...more

The Ethics of Publishing "I Am Adam Lanza's Mother"

If you have access to US social media, you've probably seen the blog post, "Thinking the Unthinkable," at least once since last Friday's horrific massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Its author, Anarchist Soccer Mom (hereinafter referred to as "ASM"), shares harrowing episodes of life with her gifted but mentally ill 13-year-old son, and her frustrations with a failing mental health system. ...more
@velocitee101 Your information is outdated.  Andrew Wakefield's work was vindicated and the ...more

Protect Your Voting Rights on November 6

As I write this, millions of people in the US and Caribbean are struggling to recover from Superstorm Sandy. While some people are searching for missing loved ones, burying their dead, and trying to pump millions of gallons of seawater out of subway tunnels, U.S. election officials are trying to ensure that next Tuesday's presidential election will occur as planned, and that absentee and early voting ballots will get counted. ...more
Thank you both for your comments. Yes, Maria, it does seem that we are being forced to defend ...more

Poll Pegs Black Support for Romney at Zero Percent

Pollwatchers nation-wide did a double-take Tuesday after reports of an NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey pegged African American support for that Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney at 0 percent, versus 94 percent for Pres. Barack Obama. The telephone survey queried 1000 registered voters and included about 110 black respondents. Romney also trailed Obama with among women, Hispanics and voters under 35....more
Thanks to all of you for the vigorous discussion. @Terri and @Laura - I'd love to dialogue with ...more

Sally Ride, First American Woman in Space, Dies at 61

America's first woman in space, physicist Sally Ride, died today at her home in California at the age of 61 after a bout with pancreatic cancer, according to news reports. President Obama expressed sadness and admiration for "a national hero and a powerful role model" in a brief statement. NASA administrator Charles Bolden praised the woman who "literally changed the face of America's space program."...more
I really, really, really want a t-shirt with her picture on it that says Ride, Sally Ride. She ...more

I Marched for the Martin Luther King Holiday

Early on the crisp, clear morning of January 15, 1981, I boarded a bus in Princeton, New Jersey bound for a demonstration in Washington, DC to make the birthdate of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. a national holiday. Via the Associated Press, the New York Times reported the next day that about 15,000 of us  "walked along Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol the Washington Monument, carrying signs that read, 'Let's make this day a day of celebration - Happy Birthday to Martin Luther King' and 'I Have a Dream - for Peace.'" ...more
@edavis Thanks so much!more