The clamor for passage of a federal shield law that includes bloggers has risen after two travel bloggers found themselves slapped with subpoenas last week for publishing redacted documents from the Transportation Security Agency.
A few months ago, I warned that some folks were attempting to misuse healthcare reform to restrict access to abortion. They have come a long way since then, endangering the vital struggle for healthcare — indeed, torpedoing reform is a key goal for many involved in this effort....more
Just days before a leading press freedom group reported that an unprecedented number of bloggers and online journalists are being imprisoned, a pioneering human rights activist and online community builder called for a more sophisticated, globally-conscious approach to protecting online speech.
When my husband and I decided to move to rural Mississippi for his job, I had no idea what adventures lay in store for me. Growing up with liberal parents in the suburbs of Indiana and Illinois, I gleaned the ideals of action. From the time I was small, my mother showed me that if you didn't like something, you could always change it. Getting a divorce and not having an annulment despite her Irish-Catholic upbringing were only a couple of examples. She questioned teachers, school systems, and churches. Where injustice placed its dirty hand, she championed justice's cause....more
The US House of Representatives passed HR 4173, the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2009, a sweeping financial reform bill Friday that would chage an array of credit, lending and investing practices, set new rules for financial services companies deemed "too big to fail," and create a powerful new federal agency to regulate financial agencies on behalf of consumers. Supporters, including Pres....more
I've been so depressed lately by the news (Afghanistan, health care reform denying women reproductive rights, New York State Senate defeating gay marriage, etc., etc.) that it is almost hard to get my blood boiling these days. An email I received from the New Israel Fund changed that. When I learned that some public buses in Jerusalem force women to enter through the back door, sit in the back, and "dress modestly" in order to board I immediately wanted to go there, get on a bus in my sluttiest outfit (which is actually pretty modest to everyone but religious fanatics), and protest. Of course, I'd then be subjected to verbal and physical abuse by evil men who like to think that they are God, when really they are just oppressors who misinterpret their religious texts to benefit themselves.
Last week, Jacquelyn Nguyen became the first Vietnamese-American judge to be confirmed by the US Senate for the Federal judiciary. That's a salutatory achievement to be sure, but it was made all the more remarkable by the fact that Nguyen is only the 11th of Pres. Obama's judicial nominees to win Senate confirmation....more
Late last month, an ordained Pentecostal preacher and prison inmate regained the right to preach and teach Bible study classes as a result of lawsuit settlement brokered by the American Civil Liberties Union. The settlement with the New Jersey Attorney General rescinds a 2007 ban on preaching in the New Jersey State Prison and gives Howard N. Thompson, Jr. permission to conduct religious services under the supervision of the prison chaplain or his designate. ...more
It's being called a "landmark decision." A federal judge ruled November 18 in favor of New Orleans residents and one business, the plaintiffs, and against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in a Hurricane Katrina flooding lawsuit.
U.S. District Court Judge Stanwood R. Duval, Jr, decided that the Corps failed to maintain the levees that breached during Katrina, flooding St. Bernard Parish and the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans. The case involved six plaintiffs, two of which are in the same household, and the court awarded $720,000 in compensation to the remaining four.
Not long after I graduated from college, I worked at a government agency. One of my co-workers was in the middle of a bitter divorce. Prior to the divorce, he stayed home caring for his two young sons. Once his wife left him, however, she filed for custody of the children. At the time, he did not contest the filing, as he did not want to upset his kids any more than they already were. However, he was clearly heartbroken and missed nurturing his children.
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