Commentary: We must stop ‘shadow banning’ Black culture
Every February a new cultural controversy pops up to show us why Black History Month is needed. A hot-button topic this year has been Gov. Ron DeSantis’s threat to ban the African American Advanced Placement (A.P.) curriculum from Florida classrooms after state education officials there said it violates a state law that regulates how race is discussed in public schools.
Commentary: UNC Chapel Hill trustees misfire with rushed and ill-conceived plan to launch conservative school
Two weeks ago, the UNC Board of Trustees arrived in Chapel Hill hellbent on launching yet another salvo in the campus Culture Wars. They surprised everyone with a resolution calling for the creation of a new “School of Civic Life and Leadership.” Comprised “of a minimum of 20 dedicated faculty,” this proposed school would help develop student “skills in public discourse” in the service of “promoting democracy and serving to benefit society.”
We don’t have to choose between supporting trans kids and respecting their parents
Republicans in the Iowa General Assembly and Gov. Kim Reynolds are determined to earn their culture war medals this winter with multiple bills attacking the phantom menace of transgender indoctrination. But perhaps the thorniest and most dangerous of these mean-spirited proposals is House File 180 (formerly House File 9). This would, among other things, require schools to obtain a parent’s permission before “facilitating any accommodation that is intended to affirm a student’s gender identity” if that identity is different from the one on the student’s birth certificate. [Click here to read North Carolina Senate Bill 49.]
To be a Black man in America
The summer after the world witnessed the brutal beating of Rodney King, I and a group of friends made our way to a nightclub in the southern part of Dade County, Florida. We had recently returned to America after having spent months in Saudi Arabia, not knowing if we would ever see our families again or if we would be confronted with some lingering illness resulting from our service to our country.
No, guns do kill people. And the solution is glaringly obvious
The United States has averaged more than one mass shooting per day since January 2022, but elected officials refuse to act. My Nhan, 65, immigrated to the United States from Vietnam in the 1980s, and made her home in California’s San Gabriel Valley, in a community called Rosemead. Her niece, Fonda Quan, said she was ready “to start the year fresh,” and celebrate with her friends, according to the CBC. She never got the chance.
Veto showdowns and voter ID: Democracy will be on the defensive again at the legislature in 2023
The N.C. General Assembly gathered on Jan. 11 amid trappings of ceremony and good cheer to kick off its 2023 session. Then reality reared its head: At least in the state House, the majority party apparently intends to play rough. Democrats in the minority are left to wonder if their Republican counterparts see them not as duly elected colleagues with whom they may disagree over this bill or that, but as enemies to be muzzled and marginalized.
The most impactful agricultural story of 2022
Whew… what a year. If you closely follow ag doings, you know there’s plenty to talk about. If not, well let me get you caught up. First, three stories that fall just a wee bit short of the most impactful agricultural story of 2022.
Five steps Gov. Cooper can take to ensure the Leandro ruling benefits students for years to come
In November, the Supreme Court handed down a landmark ruling in the long-running Leandro court case. By a 4-3 margin, the justices ordered the state to provide our public schools, early education providers, and higher education institutions the funding necessary to implement years two and three of the Leandro Comprehensive Remedial Plan. The court ruled that the state continues to violate the constitutional rights of North Carolina’s students to have access to a “sound basic education.”
Immediate action is needed to aid Afghans who put their lives on the line for Americans
U.S. Marine vet from North Carolina: Congress should pass the Afghan Adjustment Act ASAP More than a year ago, as Afghanistan fell to the Taliban, I concluded twenty-seven years of uniformed service. I spent more than a year of my life in Afghanistan, serving in special operations, a fact only relevant because it brought me into close contact with members of the Afghan National Security Forces and Afghan civilian interpreters.
Could election results spur an immediate reversal of a landmark state Supreme Court ruling?
The North Carolina Supreme Court – or at least a slim majority of its members – invoked its solemn duty to uphold constitutional rights when it agreed in a Nov. 4 ruling that the state must spend more money to upgrade its system of public education. The General Assembly – or at least the Republicans who run things in the legislative branch’s mid-century modern temple in Raleigh – now is gearing up to invoke its solemn power to convince the court to buzz off.
Why North Carolinians deserve to have the “right to repair”
North Carolina farmers would have more to celebrate on this year's International Repair Day (which is scheduled for Saturday, October 15) if big business interests hadn’t succeeded, last July, in quashing a new proposed law contained in the original version of North Carolina’s 2022 Farm Act. The legislation would have added a new Article 9 to the state's consumer protection statutes -- a right-to-repair provision...
US history lesson: Taxes on rich people helped to beat inflation (and win World War II)
North Carolina lawmakers should learn from past national experience and rethink state's fiscal policies Did you know progressive taxes helped beat Hitler? If not, don’t worry, you’re not alone. It’s worth looking back at how taxes helped tackle inflation during WWII and what lessons NC leaders still need to draw from that bit of economic history.