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Mary Shaw is a Philadelphia-based writer and activist, with a focus on politics, human rights, and social justice. She is a former Philadelphia Area Coordinator for the Nobel-Prize-winning human rights group Amnesty International, and her views appear regularly in a variety of newspapers, magazines, and websites. Note that the ideas expressed here are the author's own, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Amnesty International or any other organization with which she may be associated.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, January 17, 2010 No Excuse for Racial Profiling
The failed attempt on Christmas Day to blow up a Northwest Airlines plane has some people calling for racial profiling. In fact, a recent USA Today/Gallup poll shows that an alarming majority of Americans support ethnic profiling. However, I contend that this is a misguided reaction that can actually be counterproductive. And the attempted Christmas bombing is no excuse for it.
(26 comments) SHARE Sunday, February 17, 2013 They Still Cling to Guns and Religion
"When Obama made his controversial "guns and religion" comment almost five years ago, I'm sure he never envisioned the kind of backlash to his election that has caused those right-wing obsessions to grow exponentially."
(13 comments) SHARE Monday, December 21, 2009 The Salvation Army: It Gets Worse
It's that time of year again. At shopping centers everywhere, representatives from the Salvation Army, dressed in their paramilitary attire, ring their bells and aggressively invite your holiday donations. And I always see people eagerly throwing money into their big red kettles. I suspect that most of these generous individuals aren't aware of what their dollars are actually funding.
(11 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 7, 2008 What Sarah Palin Didn't Tell Us
In her acceptance speech at the RNC, Sarah Palin covered the talking points that would win favor with her audience. At the same time, she chose to ignore some important considerations that could make all the difference in voters' minds.
(64 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 3, 2013 American Hunger and the Christian Right
"I have seen hunger, up close and personal, right here in the richest nation on the planet. And, despite what the so-called "Christian" right keeps telling us, I know that laziness does not explain why poor people are poor."
(24 comments) SHARE Monday, January 25, 2010 A Giant Leap Towards Fascism
What we have now is not government of the people, by the people, and for the people. What we have now is government of the people, by the corporations, and for the corporations. And that is exactly how Mussolini defined fascism.
(4 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 13, 2008 The Salvation Army's Red Kettle of Trouble
The Salvation Army has done some good work in the past in providing assistance to the poor, the addicted, and the marginalized. But their methods are not ones that I approve of.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, June 3, 2009 How the Catholic Church Survives Social Progress
In the 40-plus years since Vatican II, society has evolved, and most Catholics I know have changed with the times. A result is the large number of "cafeteria Catholics", who pick and choose which doctrines they will follow and which they will ignore.
(14 comments) SHARE Sunday, October 11, 2009 The Republicans and the Taliban: More alike than Rush will admit
When Obama won the Nobel Prize, Rush Limbaugh pointed out that the Republicans "agree with the Taliban [...] that he doesn't deserve the award." And Limbaugh's words led me to realize that the Republican Party of today has more in common with the Taliban than just a belief that Obama doesn't deserve the Nobel Prize. In fact, the two groups share more views than Limbaugh would probably want to admit.
(8 comments) SHARE Friday, April 2, 2010 How Christian Is the Pope, Really?
The independent and foreign press have written much in the past about the current pope's ongoing cover-ups of clergy sex abuse in the Catholic Church. Now the American mainstream media are finally catching on. But it's long overdue. So here is a history.
(12 comments) SHARE Monday, July 5, 2010 Why Are We Still In Afghanistan?
Obama described McChrystal's departure as "a change in personnel, not a change in policy." But is the unchanging policy really a good one?
(27 comments) SHARE Monday, December 6, 2010 Christian Hypocrisy in the GOP
The Republicans in Washington keep talking about God and "values". They like to make it look like they are on the side of God...
(26 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 3, 2013 The Ex-Pope and the Holiness Myth
Sentimental Catholics and others have been praising the now-former pontiff. They call him a holy man. However, in looking back through his record, I see much that is downright unholy.
(19 comments) SHARE Monday, January 2, 2012 Obama Signs Indefinite Detention Into Law
On December 31, when most U.S. citizens were distracted with New Year's holiday plans, President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) into law. This law authorizes the President of the United States to order the U.S. military to arrest and imprison terrorism suspects indefinitely, including U.S. citizens, without charging them or putting them on trial.
(14 comments) SHARE Saturday, July 11, 2009 Society, Politics, and the Overpopulation Problem
I am writing this on July 11 -- World Population Day. And I am reflecting on the fact that the world's population continues to grow year after year, even though our planet and its resources remain finite.
(19 comments) SHARE Saturday, November 1, 2008 America's Enduring Culture of Hate
Hate and intolerance are alive and thriving, and in fact seem especially pronounced during this high-stakes election campaign season.
(32 comments) SHARE Monday, December 27, 2010 Bradley Manning's Pre-Trial Punishment
Manning's detention conditions, as described by his attorney, seem like harsh and cruel punishment even for the most violent, most dangerous convicted criminals. But Manning has not been convicted of any crime at this point.
(15 comments) SHARE Monday, February 8, 2010 In Tea Party Address, Palin Stokes the Anti-Rights Fire
On February 6th, Sarah Palin gave the keynote address at a tea party convention in Nashville.
As expected, I disagreed with just about everything Palin said. However, there was one part of her speech in particular that really got my blood boiling: She propagated the lie that the would-be Christmas airline bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, stopped talking after he was read his Miranda rights.
(8 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 4, 2011 The Two Faces of Barack Obama
With President Obama running for a second term, I cannot help but wonder which Obama we will see as the reelection campaign heats up over the coming year.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 1, 2013 Divorcing Wells Fargo
"I guess it was a sentimental kind of attachment, like when you're in an unhappy marriage but not yet emotionally ready to break away."
(8 comments) SHARE Sunday, January 10, 2010 Marriage vs. Civil Unions: Separate Is Never Equal
Some opponents of same-sex marriage try to justify their discrimination by offering up civil unions as an alternative for gay couples who want to enjoy similar benefits. But they don't want to call it marriage. They want to maintain a heterosexual monopoly on the word "marriage". It's "separate but equal", they might say. But I contend that separate is never equal.
(9 comments) SHARE Sunday, October 26, 2008 Is Palin the New Bush?
Will Sarah Palin run for president in 2012? Stranger things have happened, like the election of the similarly unqualified George W. Bush in 2000.
(10 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 9, 2009 Bush Tortured Children, and America Yawns
Influenced by the right-wing extremists, Americans have come to regard the perceived "enemy" as less than human. How else could they justify the killing and maiming of so many innocent civilian men, women, and children, and the torture of any human being, let alone a child?
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, December 29, 2008 Jail Instead of Rehab: Not Just for Grownups Anymore
We routinely treat our misguided youth like fighting dogs -- throwing them into prisons where they can hone their criminal instincts, instead of rehabilitating them and giving them a fair chance at becoming productive, law-abiding, tax-paying adults.
(7 comments) SHARE Saturday, December 20, 2008 The Rick Warren Controversy and Barack's Bad Timing
I understand and appreciate Obama's agenda of inclusiveness. But, in seeking inclusiveness for his inauguration ceremony, did he really have to include someone so divisive, who is himself against inclusion of the LGBT community in one of society's most revered institutions?
(26 comments) SHARE Monday, April 26, 2010 Arizona - The Hate State?
In the past, I never imagined that Arizona was a state full of xenophobic right-wing extremists. But recent events seem to suggest that it is -- at least inside the State Capitol and law enforcement circles.
(13 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 16, 2008 Revoke the Mormons' 501(c)(3) Status?
Churches enjoy 501(c)(3) status as tax-exempt religious organizations. But with privilege comes responsibility. And so with 501(c)(3) status comes the obligation to refrain from most types of political activity.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, March 23, 2010 The Far-Right Fringe: Armed, Bigoted, and Dangerous
It was scary enough when some people showed up at town hall meetings last summer with loaded guns. But those seemed like isolated incidents. Now, however, even the unarmed tea partiers are resorting to more and more extreme displays of bigotry and hate.
(14 comments) SHARE Sunday, October 28, 2007 Is God Running for President?
We need to vote for candidates who will take their instructions not from some holy book, but rather from the Constitution.
(5 comments) SHARE Thursday, July 2, 2009 USA's Role In the Honduran Coup -- and How We Must Fix It
Last weekend, a military coup in Honduras overthrew the democratically elected government of that Central American nation and sent President Manuel Zelaya into exile in Costa Rica. The coup was apparently led by Romeo Vasquez, a graduate of the notorious School of the Americas (SOA), a military/torture school located at Fort Benning, Georgia.
(5 comments) SHARE Monday, November 24, 2008 Why Barack Obama Should Close the SOA
An end to torture by the CIA means little if we are still teaching the techniques to those who would propagate the atrocities overseas with our assistance.
(6 comments) SHARE Monday, August 23, 2010 Bush Got His Crusade
Islamophobia has grown into a dangerous new culture war that threatens our national security.
(12 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 30, 2008 Deadly Consumerism
How cheap really is that big TV if it costs you your soul?
(5 comments) SHARE Monday, October 5, 2009 Texas Executes Innocent Man; Governor Impedes Investigation
We recently learned that the State of Texas probably executed an innocent man. Then, last week, Governor Perry abruptly removed three members of the Texas Forensic Science Commission -- including the commission's chairman -- just two days before they were to meet to review the evidence.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, January 1, 2011 10 Great Progressive Moments of 2010
2010 was a wild ride. The year had its share of low points for progressives, like the reelection defeats of Senator Russ Feingold and Representative Alan Grayson, the scrapping of a single-payer health care option, Arizona's xenophobic new laws, and the extension of tax breaks for zillionaires. But the year also had some high points...
(5 comments) SHARE Wednesday, May 13, 2009 The Trouble With Health "Insurance"
Insurance companies are in business to make profits for their shareholders. And they are profiting from the suffering of others, often by denying payment for necessary medical treatment. That itself is incompatible with the core definition of health care.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, November 29, 2010 U.S. Gets Human Rights Advice From the World
On November 5, the United States had its first-ever formal evaluation under the Universal Period Review process before the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC)...
(9 comments) SHARE Saturday, August 23, 2008 Joe Biden: The Yang to Obama's Yin
I don't think there could have been a "perfect" choice for Obama's VP slot, but then there never is. All things considered, I think Biden is probably the most solid choice we had this year.
(7 comments) SHARE Monday, March 14, 2011 In War On Terror, Obama Is Bush Light
We expected Obama to close the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay as promised and end the unfair military commission system there. But talk is cheap. And now it looks like we've been fooled.
(7 comments) SHARE Wednesday, July 3, 2013 Amnesty International Says US Must Not Persecute Snowden
"Snowden is a whistleblower. He has disclosed issues of enormous public interest in the US and around the world. And yet instead of addressing or even owning up to these actions, the US government is more intent on going after Edward Snowden."
(5 comments) SHARE Sunday, April 1, 2012 Freedom Of Religion Cannot Be Exclusive
"What government is really interfering with is the right's ability to impose its own religious beliefs on those of us who believe differently. What the government is doing is what freedom is really all about..."
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 1, 2009 Legislating Inequality: Last year in California, this year in Maine?
If Question 1 passes on Tuesday, Maine -- like California -- will have legislated inequality. In a nation founded on the principle that all men are created equal, the law will now say that gays and lesbians are not so equal. It will officially define gays and lesbians as second-class citizens who are not entitled to equal rights in that state.
(3 comments) SHARE Monday, August 24, 2009 The Irony of the "Socialist" Scare
Now McCarthyism is back, but updated for today's times. It is a new McCarthyism. And this time the perceived threat is "socialism".
(13 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 2, 2008 The Trouble With Nader
As much as I appreciate the idealism of these third-party voters, the electoral process isn't set up to work in their favor. We've got a two-party system in which third-party votes are potential spoilers. But there is a way around this.
(9 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 9, 2008 One Step Forward, Three Steps Back
On Election Day, tolerance in the USA took a huge step forward with the election of our first African-American president. On at least three other fronts, however, tolerance took a step backwards in a somewhat different direction.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, December 4, 2011 Troy Davis's Sister Succumbs to Cancer
On December 1, Martina Davis Correia lost her long battle with breast cancer. Correia was the sister of Troy Davis, who was executed by the state of Georgia on September 21 amidst worldwide protest.
(10 comments) SHARE Saturday, September 19, 2009 Of Course It's About Race
A few days ago, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter noted that racism is likely responsible for much of the anti-Obama sentiment that has monopolized the media in recent weeks. That seems pretty clear to me, too.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, March 12, 2012 Is Kony 2012 The Right Thing To Do?
"Through the Kony 2012 campaign, IC hopes to raise [Joseph] Kony's profile worldwide in hopes of finding him and bringing him to justice. And opinions on this tactic are diverse..."
(5 comments) SHARE Monday, May 3, 2010 Kevorkian vs. Death Panels: There Is a Huge Difference
He's back: Dr. Jack Kevorkian, aka "Dr. Death" - advocate for euthanasia and assisted suicide, or what many of us see as the right of terminally ill patients to choose a quick and dignified death over a painful, lingering one.
(3 comments) SHARE Monday, April 19, 2010 A Lesson On the Oklahoma Bombing Anniversary
April 19, 2010, marks the 15th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, in which 168 people died (including 19 young children) and more than 680 people were injured. Crazed Muslims? Actually, no...
(15 comments) SHARE Tuesday, July 28, 2009 Lou Dobbs Undermines CNN's Credibility
With Fox News tilted firmly to the right and MSNBC leaning more and more to the left, CNN is commonly regarded as the more moderate, more balanced cable news alternative. And that generally seems to be the case, with a couple of exceptions, the most glaring of which is Lou Dobbs.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, February 28, 2011 This Is What Democracy Looks Like
Around the world, the frustration of ordinary people with the economy, unemployment, corruption, and repression has reached critical mass...
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, June 1, 2010 Jim Webb's DADT Mistake
To my disappointment, a lone Democrat in the Senate Committee -- Senator Jim Webb of Virginia, a Vietnam veteran -- opposed the act to repeal "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", citing Pentagon reluctance.
(8 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 19, 2012 Vladimir Putin and the Crime of Dissent
"Russia may have made some steps forward towards social progress since the dissolution of the Soviet Union, but it seems that President Vladimir Putin is doing everything he can to crack down on political dissent. And the new poster girls for this oppression are members of the feminist punk rock group p*ssy Riot."
(10 comments) SHARE Sunday, April 19, 2009 They Are All Accountable For Torture
Spain might not prosecute the "Bush Six" because they didn't participate in the torture. And Obama will not prosecute those who did. So which approach is correct? In my opinion, neither.
(5 comments) SHARE Saturday, November 22, 2008 The Real Problem with Traitor Joe's Chairmanship
While I admit that my anger with Joe Lieberman's continued chairmanship of the Senate Homeland Security Committee is partially due to a desire for vengeance (which, in this case, I prefer to think of as justice), I also have a far more pragmatic reason to oppose this decision by the Senate Dems.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 20, 2012 Did Texas Execute Yet Another Innocent Man?
A recent study by the Columbia Human Rights Law Review suggests that Carlos DeLuna, who was executed by the state of Texas in 1989 for the murder of Wanda Lopez, was actually innocent.
(4 comments) SHARE Monday, February 18, 2008 What Would George Washington Think?
On this Presidents' Day holiday, I wonder what George Washington would think of the current state of affairs in this country he helped to found.
SHARE Monday, September 14, 2009 The New GOP: Civility Optional
Today's GOP is no longer the party of Lincoln, the party of Eisenhower, or even the party of Reagan. Today's so-called conservatives are anything but conservative in their seemingly desperate displays of anti-Obama sentiment. Indeed, their behavior in 2009 makes their 2004 anti-Kerry chants of "flip-flop" seem almost charming by comparison.
(4 comments) SHARE Monday, March 15, 2010 Jihad Blondes Prove Racial Profiling a Waste of Time
Will the cases of Jihad Jane and Jihad Jamie finally convince the knee-jerk, race-obsessed folks on the far right (and their pliant followers) that terrorism is not synonymous with brown skin or an exotic accent?
(15 comments) SHARE Monday, March 1, 2010 The Truth About Tort Reform
In reality, it's not about the trial lawyers. It's about the legal rights of everyday people who suddenly find themselves victims of preventable medical errors.
(2 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 22, 2009 Water: Commodity or Human Right?
I am writing this on March 22, World Water Day. And I am thinking about how spoiled we Americans are. We use and abuse our natural resources without giving it a second thought.
(3 comments) SHARE Tuesday, September 23, 2014 China is Exporting Torture
Research by Amnesty International (AI) and the Omega Research Foundation has uncovered a "flourishing trade" in the "export of tools of torture by Chinese companies" which is fueling human rights violations worldwide.
(7 comments) SHARE Monday, April 7, 2008 Girls Taken From Polygamist Ranch: Kidnap or Rescue?
In normal society, when it is discovered that a child is being abused at the hands of her parents, the authorities intervene, if the child is lucky, and the child is removed from the abusive environment.
The recent activity at the FLDS compound is no different.
(7 comments) SHARE Sunday, September 6, 2009 Why the U.S. is Not a Democracy
As voters, we like to believe that we play a significant role in our government's affairs by more-or-less directly choosing who will represent us in Washington. But, with few exceptions, the men and women in Washington do not represent the voters. Instead, they represent the special interests which have the money to influence the voters at election time.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, November 5, 2010 Lies, Money, And The Fate Of Our Liberty
Thomas Jefferson once wrote, "Convinced that the people are the only safe depositories of their own liberty, and that they are not safe unless enlightened to a certain degree..."
SHARE Monday, January 17, 2011 What MLK Would See Today
I wonder how the Reverend Dr. King would feel about today's American politics if he were still alive...
SHARE Tuesday, September 5, 2006 Santorum Defends Malpractice
Senator Santorum is apparently too busy pandering for votes from the physicians' associations to care about the real problems at the core of the malpractice issue.
(4 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 17, 2009 GOP Misleads on Health Care Bureaucracy
This is the difference between the Democrats, who want to promote the well-being of ordinary Americans, and the Republicans, who only want to please their corporate donors.
(2 comments) SHARE Saturday, March 14, 2009 Gov. Richardson to Decide Future of Death Penalty in NM
On March 13, the New Mexico Senate voted to repeal the death penalty in that state. This action follows a corresponding vote in the New Mexico House of Representatives in February. The bill is now on its way to Governor Richardson's desk. And, unfortunately, he appears to be on the fence.
(11 comments) SHARE Sunday, March 29, 2009 No, We're Not On a Road to Communism
The Democrats do not think all business are evil. And the Democrats don't want the government to take over all businesses. We just see this current recession as an example of the problems that can result from unregulated business run amok.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, May 17, 2010 BP Needs a New Logo
I used to think that BP was rare among oil companies, because its ads expressed a concern for the environment, and the company was allegedly also working on alternative energy sources... But then my bubble burst...
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, July 4, 2012 Jefferson is Spinning
"As I write this on the July 4th holiday, 2012, it occurs to me that Thomas Jefferson is surely spinning in his grave..."
SHARE Sunday, October 23, 2011 Will Rick Perry Kill Another Innocent Man?
Texas governor and Republican presidential contender Rick Perry has faced criticism from the left (and applause from the right) for his heavy-handed use of the death penalty. And Perry has said that he loses no sleep over the possibility that he may have executed an innocent man. This is despite the fact that it appears that Perry has done just that - and could very likely do it again very soon.
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, April 13, 2010 Dawn Johnsen Is a Victim of the War on Terror
On April 9, Dawn Johnsen, President Obama's nominee to lead the Office of Legal Council (OLC), withdrew her nomination. Her nomination had been in various stages of limbo for more than a year.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, January 2, 2010 Obama's New Year's Resolutions (in my dreams)
s far as I can tell, the White House has not released President Obama's list of resolutions for 2010. So I offer the following resolutions for him to consider, unlikely as they are to be adopted.
SHARE Friday, March 26, 2010 In Death Row Case, Supreme Court Came Through But Texas Remains Guilty
On March 24, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of execution for Texas death row inmate Hank Skinner. The stay will allow the Court more time to consider Skinner's civil rights claim that he is entitled to DNA testing which he believes will prove his innocence. The news came just one hour before Skinner was to be strapped to the gurney.
(8 comments) SHARE Thursday, May 14, 2009 Why I Oppose the Inquirer Boycott
The Philadelphia Inquirer has hired John Yoo as a regular columnist. Some have called for a boycott of the paper. But I'm not sure I agree with them.
(8 comments) SHARE Wednesday, December 12, 2007 Is Nancy Pelosi Complicit in Torture?
It appears that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Dem leaders had been briefed about the use of waterboarding, rendition, and other crimes against humanity, but did not object. In fact, they may have actually encouraged it.
(4 comments) SHARE Sunday, June 28, 2009 40 Years After Stonewall, Still a Long Way to Go
I am writing this on June 28, 2009 -- the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York's Greenwich Village in 1969, which marked the beginning of the LGBT rights movement here in the U.S.
While some progress has certainly been made, we as a society still have a long way to go in this newest civil rights movement.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, September 28, 2009 Enough in Afghanistan!
October 7 will mark the eighth anniversary of George W. Bush's invasion of Afghanistan. And what have we accomplished there in those eight years? Nothing to be proud of, really.
SHARE Sunday, November 18, 2007 Redact O'Reilly
I suspect that Bill O'Reilly fails to see the irony in his attacks on Brian DePalma's new film, "Redacted".
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, March 3, 2009 GOP Hypocrisy on Health Care
In the case of nationalized health care, Republicans like to warn the sheep that such a program would result in bureaucrats deciding what kinds of treatment you can and cannot have. But that is exactly what we're dealing with today!
(9 comments) SHARE Saturday, May 30, 2009 Why the Torture Photos Should Be Released
The Obama administration continues trying to block the release of some additional photos of detainee abuse. The excuse? They say exposing the photos could incite anti-American violence in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. They seem to forget that we're already seeing anti-American violence in those countries. And they seem to forget why.
(2 comments) SHARE Monday, January 2, 2006 Jesus vs George
George W. Bush won two presidential elections by playing the religion card. But is Bush a true Christian?
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, December 25, 2007 What's Christmas Like in Iraq?
Our troops must spend another Christmas thousands of miles away from their families. And George W. Bush deserves a big lump of coal.
SHARE Sunday, January 15, 2006 Execution and Apathy
Apparently, most Americans care more about the sex lives of celebrities than the injustices that are being funded by our tax dollars.
(18 comments) SHARE Wednesday, September 19, 2007 Does OJ Really Matter?
I shouldn't give a damn about O.J. Simpson, just like I shouldn't give a damn about Britney Spears or Paris Hilton. Neither should you.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, August 31, 2008 RNC, Gustav, and NOLA -- Oh My!
Bush and Cheney have canceled their appearances at the Republican National Convention, which begins tomorrow, because of "mounting concerns about Hurricane Gustav." Call me a cynic but I think it's just PR.
(1 comments) SHARE Friday, October 2, 2009 Good News, Bad News on Sex Ed Funding
By pandering to the religious right by funding abstinence-only-until-marriage programs, the Senate Finance Committee is, in effect, trying to forcibly impose an extreme and dangerous set of moral beliefs onto the rest of us who may or may not agree.
(6 comments) SHARE Thursday, September 11, 2008 9/11 Became an Excuse
I am so tired of the politics of fear and lying. And when it's done in the name of 9/11, it dishonors those who lost their lives in the attacks.
SHARE Thursday, August 20, 2009 Bush Is to Blame for Afghan Voting Problems
August 20 is presidential election day in Afghanistan. And if you think voter intimidation is a problem in some urban neighborhoods here in the U.S., you ain't seen nothin' like they're seeing in Afghanistan.
(2 comments) SHARE Wednesday, December 2, 2009 More War But Still No Jobs
It sounds as though President Obama plans to keep us in Afghanistan through most, if not all, of his first term. Is this really the best use of our resources?
(7 comments) SHARE Sunday, April 20, 2008 Patriotism or Jingoism?
There's the war, the economy, and so much more at stake. But the media would rather talk about flag pins.
(22 comments) SHARE Sunday, May 18, 2008 No, George, Diplomacy Is Not Appeasement
And diplomacy has not been repeatedly discredited by history. In fact, diplomacy is what has made possible today's modern globalized civil society, imperfect though it may be.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, April 22, 2007 Gonzales's Long Record of Lawlessness
If the federal prosecutor scandal is what finally calls Alberto Gonzales to accountability, then it's a positive step towards restoring true justice in the U.S. But we must not lose sight of Gonzales's other offenses, and he should be held accountable for all of them.
(2 comments) SHARE Tuesday, March 10, 2009 From Lincoln to Limbaugh
Rush Limbaugh is the new unofficial head of the floundering Republican Party. This is quite the de-evolution of the party of Abe Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt, which once was much more concerned with issues of conscience.
(8 comments) SHARE Sunday, October 14, 2007 Obama Blows It With "Kingdom on Earth" Comment
While I am bothered by the fact that the Republicans have in recent decades cornered the market on religious votes in this country, it bothers me even more to see Democrats recklessly using religion to demonstrate that they can be holy too.
(1 comments) SHARE Monday, March 9, 2009 Strategic Negotiation is Not Appeasement
The media are abuzz with the news that President Obama acknowledges that we are not winning the war in Afghanistan and is thinking about reaching out to moderate elements of the Taliban.
And the right-wingers are jumping all over it. To them, it's proof that Obama likes to pal around with terrorists.
SHARE Tuesday, February 1, 2011 Rights Groups Speak Out On Egyptian Protests
Human rights groups have been weighing in on the protests, defending the people's right to demonstrate, and condemning what appears to be unnecessary violence against the protesters...
SHARE Saturday, April 25, 2009 Multitask, Mr. President
When it comes to the torture issue, and the prosecution of those responsible for it, Obama says he wants to look forward, not backward. He suggests that using time and resources to pursue justice against the torturers might impede his administration's ambitious agenda. To that I say: Multitask, Mr. President.
(5 comments) SHARE Friday, September 21, 2007 Senate Votes Against Free Speech
In passing a resolution condemning MoveOn.org's criticism of General Petraeus, the U.S. Senate has passed a resolution against freedom of speech.
SHARE Sunday, January 13, 2013 Jeanne Manford, PFLAG Founder, RIP
"I was saddened to learn of the recent death of Jeanne Manford, founder of an organization that eventually grew to become Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG)..."
(4 comments) SHARE Monday, April 28, 2008 Why Do The Republicans Oppose Fair Pay?
According to the current law upheld last year by the Supreme Court, you have to be a mind reader or else accept lower wages than your white male colleagues receive. And that is fine with the Republicans, including John McCain.
(1 comments) SHARE Saturday, July 1, 2006 What Would Jefferson Think?
Now, more than ever, patriotic Americans must stand up for the principles set forth by our Founding Fathers.
(8 comments) SHARE Saturday, March 15, 2008 Bush Says His Tax Cuts Have Worked
Even as he admitted that we are going through a challenging time, Bush had the nerve to tell an audience this week that his economic strategy has worked.
SHARE Thursday, September 25, 2008 Hasn't McCain Done Enough for the Economy?
John McCain is seeking to postpone Friday's debate in order to focus on the financial crisis. OK, so he is incapable of multitasking. But that is not my biggest concern.
(5 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 11, 2007 Dennis Kucinich Is Not A Joke
It seems like the only time we hear about Dennis Kucinich is when the talking heads make fun of him.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, February 24, 2008 In Politics, Sex Sells
The mass media's tabloid-like emphasis on a possible romantic relationship between John McCain and a female lobbyist seems to have distracted a lot of people from the real issue -- one of ethics and the corruption that so often takes place in Washington when politicians and lobbyists get too friendly.
SHARE Monday, July 11, 2005 Let the sun set on the PATRIOT Act
One very troubling aspect of the "war on terror" is the USA PATRIOT Act, which has the potential to seriously erode our basic human rights and civil liberties.
(1 comments) SHARE Tuesday, October 2, 2007 A Very Expensive Quagmire
There is no easy solution to the ongoing fiasco in Iraq; but staying there will not fix the problems.
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 25, 2007 Bush, Musharraf, and the Meaning of Democracy
George W. Bush recently expressed his support for General Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan, and called him a friend of democracy, even after Musharraf declared martial law and imprisoned his political opponents.
(1 comments) SHARE Wednesday, February 8, 2006 The Right-Wing War on Women
With conservative men in the majority in politics, it's easy and convenient to legislate control over women.
(3 comments) SHARE Sunday, July 15, 2007 A vote for Bush was a vote for the terrorists
We know now that Bush's promises to keep us safe and effectively combat terrorism were no more credible than his promise to "preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States."
SHARE Sunday, February 17, 2008 John McCain Sells His Soul to the Base
What happened to the John McCain who historically worked in a bipartisan way to legislate against torture and other forms of cruel and degrading treatment of detainees?
(1 comments) SHARE Sunday, November 13, 2005 Santorum Calls the Kettle Black
Until Santorum and his ilk stop projecting and start looking at the real issues at stake, we will never be safe from terrorism.
(4 comments) SHARE Sunday, April 13, 2008 Obama Was Right About Some Small Towns
While Obama's words surely don't apply to every person in every small town in America, they apply to the world I grew up in and the world with which I still have some contact.
(3 comments) SHARE Friday, December 8, 2006 Stealing Christmas?
If there really is a war on Christmas, a quick trip to the local shopping mall should convince any skeptic that Christmas has surely won that battle.
SHARE Wednesday, September 7, 2005 Fire and Water
Hurricane Katrina was more than just a natural disaster. No "act of God" could be so cruel.
(5 comments) SHARE Thursday, February 14, 2008 In Pennsylvania, Race is Still a Voter Issue
Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell has come under fire recently for suggesting that some Pennsylvanians "are probably not ready to vote for an African-American candidate" for President. Sadly, he is correct.
SHARE Thursday, November 15, 2007 Gitmo SOP Manual Leaked
A whistleblower has leaked a 238-page manual outlining the standard operating procedures for the prison at Guantanamo. And it covers some pretty familiar techniques, like using stress positions and dogs to break the prisoners.
(2 comments) SHARE Friday, November 16, 2007 Democratic Diversity
On the Democratic side, we have a Latino, an African American, and a woman running for president. On the Republican side, all white men.
SHARE Saturday, August 13, 2005 Homeland insecurity
The Bush administration and its right-wing pundits insist that we're making progress in the "war on terror", even in the wake of the recent terrorist bombings in London. Why, then, do polls show that a majority of Americans do not feel safer?
SHARE Monday, September 11, 2006 Instead of true leadership, five years of this
On the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, I mourn not only the loss of those 2,973 innocent lives, but also the loss of the America that I was so proud to be a part of.
SHARE Sunday, December 4, 2005 Bush Flip-Flops on Torture and Endangers Us All
George W. Bush repeatedly tells us that "this country does not torture," yet he has threatened to veto a congressional measure that expressly prohibits the torture of our detainees. The implications are sickening, at best.
SHARE Monday, April 21, 2008 Human Rights Are More Than Just Words
In his recent speech at UN headquarters in New York, Pope Benedict XVI spoke at length about the importance of human rights. I believe he means it, for the most part. But does his own human rights record stand up under scrutiny?