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Federal spending is out of control

There’s considerable confusion surrounding President Obama’s record on spending, debt and deficits. First time around, Barack Obama campaigned for president on a promise “to cut annual federal budget deficits in half” by the end of his first term. As we start his second term, out of control spending and rising federal deficits are significant threats to the country and Obama’s presidential legacy. ...

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Black history month’s powerful question

I have a rule about this month. If it’s February, I know that somebody somewhere has given an interview or written an article declaring America no longer needs Black History Month. And, sure enough, the conservative National Review Online of Feb. 4 has given us the article of one Charles W. Cooke. Its title is succinct — “Against Black History Month: This month is Black History Month. Let’s hope it’s the la ...

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The U.S. military is not really out of Africa

By Mark P. Fancher Hilary Clinton may not have been the only one who got grilled about the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi, Libya. Apparently, questions were asked about why there were no U.S. troops in place and ready to respond immediately when the attacks began. It didn’t take long for U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) to do something about that. There is now a special strike force that can ...

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The State of Equality and Justice in America: America stands at a crossroads

America stands at a crossroads. We can take the high road toward equal access to high quality public education, reaffirm our commitment to democratically elected public officials, end the failed war on drugs, recommit to the right of workers to bargain for better conditions, lower our dreadful rate of hyper-incarceration and implement the affordable care act. Or we can travel in the opposite direction and m ...

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Re: Proposed Lease of Belle Isle to the State of Michigan

On Jan. 29, Detroit City Council voted on whether to lease Belle Isle to the state of Michigan in exchange for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources assuming the maintenance costs associated with the island. After much discussion, the ultimate decision of Council was to not act on this matter at this time. I was among the six Councilmembers who voted not to approve the lease at this time. ...

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Fixing education? It’s a matter of common sense

As a former teacher, I would love to see teachers make six-figure incomes, because the ones we currently have deserve it. But Flanagan’s reasoning about attracting more, smarter and more talented teachers is faulty at many levels. Right off the top of my head, here’s a few: 1. Smarter doesn’t mean a better teacher. In fact, high functioning individuals often cannot relate to the students at all. Imagine a D ...

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State Rep. Stallworth responds to governor’s State of the State address

State Representative Thomas Stallworth, D-Detroit, said the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus (MLBC) is ready to work with the Legislature and the governor to ensure the issues of the state’s urban communities, distressed communities and communities of color are addressed. Stallworth, who was recently elected MLBC chairman, said Michigan’s turnaround won’t be complete unless urban communities share in the j ...

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A culture of cheating

Who is surprised that Lance Armstrong was doping? Who thinks he was the only one? Who is surprised that he used the Oprah Winfrey show as his platform to “come clean?” We are a nation of cheaters and Armstrong is one in a long line of our nation’s cheaters. Indeed the very foundation of our country is the result of cheating. The Pilgrims cheated the Native Americans by befriending them out of their land. La ...

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King’s greatest legacy: Seeing polarization as progress

I’ve always disliked the way Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday is often celebrated. The reasons why became even clearer to me these past few days, as the importance of considering King’s life and work was juxtaposed against three other developments: the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation; the celebration of Barack Obama’s second inauguration as president of the United States; and the splene ...

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