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Marsha Coleman-Adebayo is an environmental consultant who when working for the Environmental Protection Agency as a senior executive discovered dangerous mining conditions in South Africa conducted by a U.S. multinational. When she raised the issue she found that she was effectively told to shut up. She refused to. Her persistence saw her isolated and harassed by the EPA. She finally brought an action against them and was awarded the largest federal payout yet, and her efforts led to the first whistleblowing legislation of the 21st century, the No FEAR Whistleblowing Act. She continues to lobby for those who see wrongs to speak out.
Thursday, June 14, 2012 How not to be black: identity in 2012 (2 comments)
When I met my friend and early mentor, Noam Chomsky some three decades ago, President Ronald Reagan ruled as king and those who worked in human rights and social justice were considered a little strange. In those days Noam would get maybe 30 people to a meeting, often the same faces kept coming..
Thursday, June 7, 2012 No-one left to trust in Washington, as the shift right continues (2 comments)
It feels as though everyone in politics at present is in it for him or herself. How else can you explain the Republicans defeating a bill that would have allowed wage parity for women? Equal pay for equal work is enforced in most countries of the world, and yet here, a nation built on promises of equal opportunity we vote against it?
Friday, May 11, 2012 Yes we can " kill, but no we don't know how to create jobs (6 comments)
Is Obama's focus on Bin Laden's execution, the tracking of a relatively minor African despot, and a defense of drone attacks (almost eight times as many have occurred under Obama than under the administration of George W. Bush) a way of making us forget an economy that still sheds jobs and stutters along, growing only with the sheer will of mostly small businesses?
Sunday, March 11, 2012 The first step to change the world
I thought of the GOP primaries and those who seek to be president and how we as voters look at the field and are dismayed, we feel powerless to change the governors that we have over the years elected to high office. But in truth, we are as powerless as we allow ourselves to be. My mother's words echo, "You have no right to cut and run. Punch through the fear -- stay and fight!"
Sunday, January 29, 2012 The Death of the American Dream (3 comments)
The dream is corrupted: In 2010, the Institute for Policy Studies noted "The gap between chief executive compensation and average U.S. worker pay rose from a ratio of 263-to-1 in 2009 to 325-to-1 in 2010. "
The United States is the third most productive economy in the world but at a cost; from 1979 to 2000, married couples with children increased their working hours on average by around 16 percent or 500 hours a year.
Thursday, January 12, 2012 The role of black intellectuals - too much talk, not enough action? (7 comments)
The role of the African American intellectual is more important now than 40 or 50 years ago, propaganda has become more virulent. Obama may be the chosen one, but what needs to be defined is "chosen by whom'? We voted for him but he has failed to live up to the promises that could have helped stop African Americans still being systematically disadvantaged.
It can be little surprise that Africa
Wednesday, January 4, 2012 We all have a Rosa Parks moment -- what counts is how we respond (6 comments)
At some point we all have someone in authority tell us to do something that goes against our conscience -- but how many of us have the courage of that young woman to say: "No, I won't."
I get lots of calls from people with ethical quandaries. The most frequent is the one that starts: "My boss said that I must not report the discrepancy in our financial situation; if I do, he will fire me.' That person is being coerced to be
Tuesday, January 3, 2012 Speaking to Iowa: The big lie and our role in truth
We are told lies and witness dishonest conduct on an all too regular basis from politicians and business leaders, and if we like the leader or have previously supported him or her we find it hard to acknowledge their betrayal of our trust.
But I have found on my book tour, that there is a great thirst
Friday, November 18, 2011 What a week for whistle-blowers- rape, sexual harassment, smog and rogue soldiers
President Barack Obama who has made, "No, We Can't" the hallmark of his presidency, pressured the E.P.A. to discard new legislation that would have stopped mercury from leaching into the air from polluters and created job-creating anti-pollution controls for vehicles. The E.P.A., which appears to believe that the only environment it must protect is that in boardrooms, was only too willing to comply.