January 28, 2019

            We hear the words "national emergency" so often from the bloviator that masquerades as a President that we forget what an emergency really looks like.  One of our most pressing crises is the educational emergency that our nation faces, with the quality of inner-city education, in particular, so lacking that many young people are graduating from high school unequipped to manage either post-secondary education or employment.  This hits African American communities hardest, with an achievement gap well documented by the National Assessment of Educational Progress and the National Cent...

January 21, 2019

          As I write this, our federal government has been shut down for 27 days.  At first, it seemed like a gamesmanship joke, like who was going to blink first.  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and (CA) Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY) didn't look like they were blinking when 45 said he would "own" the shutdown to get his wall.  He's not owning it now – he didn't go to Mar-a-Largo to golf, and he indicated how acutely he felt the shutdown by serving Clemson football players cold fast food.

             Furloughed federal workers will...

January 16, 2019

If

anyone deserves a civil rights award, Angela Davis certainly does. The activist and scholar has been on the front lines of the civil rights movement all of her life. She has been especially active in prison reform matters, but she has also been involved in other civil and human rights issues. When I learned back in October that she would get the Fred Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award from the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, I was absolutely delighted. I imagined the wide smile the daughter of Birmingham must have flashed when she learned that she would be honored.

Everyone in Birmingham was...

January 7, 2019

  

   The 116th Congress, sworn in on January 3, is the most diverse our nation has ever seen.  There are more women – 102 – than ever before.  More members of the Congressional Black Caucus – 55 – than ever before.  Indeed, a former Congressional Black Caucus intern, Lauren Underwood (D-IL) is part of the incoming first-year class.  At 32, she is the youngest Black woman to serve.  This Congress includes the first Native American woman, two Muslim women, openly gay representatives, and others.  Much of this diversity was displayed at the ceremonial swearing-in of the Congressional Black C...

January 4, 2019

I'm leaving 2018 behind, with its myriad trials and tribulations.  For me, many of the challenges revolved around the unhealthy atmosphere in Washington, D.C., and that's not likely to change.  But many of the challenges, joys, and sorrows were also personal.  One of them was the loss of Robby Gregg, Jr., a diversity expert and consultant at Cook Ross, a diversity and inclusion firm in the DC area that was founded by my dear friend Howard Ross.

Robby died unexpectedly at 58, just a week before Christmas.  Alarmed at not having heard from him, a friend went to his home and found him go...

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