Monday, April 14, 2014

Voter Suppression?

President Obama recently stated that “The right to vote is threatened today in a way that it has not been since the Voting Rights Act became law nearly five decades ago,” Republicans in some swing states have advanced new laws that go beyond the voter identification requirements of recent years. Among other things, state lawmakers are pushing measures to limit the time polls are open and to cut back early voting, eliminate same-day registration, and making it more difficult to cast provisional ballots or curb the mailing of absentee ballots. Over the last 15 months, at least nine states have enacted voting changes making it harder to cast ballots. Sponsors of such laws have said they are trying to prevent voter fraud.

What’s Your Take? Voter Fraud Protection or Voter Suppression?
 


 

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

What's Your Take?

On a 25-11 straight party-line vote, with Republicans supporting the testing and Democrats opposing, the Senate approved the bill, which would require the Department of Human Services to set up a pilot drug-testing program in three counties. Sen. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge, said the testing was needed to protect the children of drug users. But Sen. Vincent Gregory, D-Southfield, said it was wrong to single out poor people for testing.Michigan has about 44,400 people who get roughly $394 in Family Independence Program benefits a month.“I’m continually frustrated by the priorities of this Legislature and the ongoing attacks on the low-income residents of the state,” he said. “The companies we give tax breaks to are not required to be drug tested. We give out tax credits to schools, students and police and fire, and now the only ones subject to drug screening are the poorest of the poor.”


Should welfare recipients be singled out for drug testing?

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

What'sYour Take?

There was a clear difference of opinion between male and female justices at the U.S. Supreme Court. The issue was whether for-profit corporations, citing religious objections, may refuse to include contraception coverage in the basic health plan now mandated under the Affordable Care Act. The lead challenger in the case is the Hobby Lobby corporation. The owners object to two forms of contraception, IUDs and morning-after pills. The Obama administration has already exempted “religious employers”, such as churches, from the contraceptive mandate.


What’s Your Take? Should For Profit businesses be allowed to deny employees certain birth control methods based on religious beliefs?



 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

What's Your Take?

Millions of people each year are arrested for marijuana possession, but a Black person is 3.73 times as likely as a White person to be arrested for the same offense according to the American Civil Liberties Union. The report goes on to reveal that enforcing marijuana laws costs about $3.6 billion a year, but the War on Marijuana has failed to diminish the use or availability of marijuana. 20 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws legalizing marijuana for medical use and voters in Washington State and Colorado approved measures legalizing the sale and possession of marijuana for non-medical use, with state oversight. It is reported that at least a half-dozen states from Alaska to Maine are considering following suit.


What’s Your Take? Is it time to end the war on marijuana?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tanya Free.com Question of the Week

Republican Congressman Paul Ryan accused residents of “inner cities” of having a “real culture problem” and lack of work ethic during a recent interview. He went on to say,“ We have got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work, so there is a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with.” Rep. Barbara Lee of California accused Ryan of racism, saying his language about poverty was a veiled attack on African-Americans.  Paul Ryan said his comments about poverty and inner cities were ‘inarticulate’ and meant for ‘society as a whole,’ not a specific group. 

What’s your take? Inarticulate banter or was it a deliberate dog whistle message to the extreme right of the GOP?
Thanks to my friend Willie Carlisle from the Examiner.com for this story! Subscribe to his articles HERE!

Monday, March 10, 2014

What's Your Take?

Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o recently shared with a crowd at a luncheon in Hollywood that she hasn’t always been comfortable in her own skin. Lupita said she “felt unbeautiful” and admits her skin tone was an obstacle until she was able to embrace her beauty.  Lupita talks about overcoming this obstacle by seeing people on TV that look like her.
What’s your take?  How comfortable are you in your skin?  How do you think the lack of diversity on TV affects self esteem?

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

What's Your Take?

Filmmaker Spike Lee made news last week with his public criticism of gentrification, when middle class residents displace low income residents. Statistics indicate that many of these communities become safer and improve over time. Lee raised the question of why it takes an influx of white middle class residents to improve living conditions.

What’s your take? Is gentrification good for the inner cities?



 

Monday, February 24, 2014

What's Your Take?

Arizona's Legislators have passed a bill that would allow business owners, as long as they assert their religious beliefs, to deny service to gay and lesbian customers. Democrats and business groups feel the bill   sanctions discrimination. Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican and onetime small business owner stated in a recent interview that” I think anybody that owns a business can choose who they work with or who they don't work with." The bill is now on Gov. Jan Brewer’s desk. The conservative group that pushed the bill feels the bill is simply about protecting religious liberty and nothing else.


What’s Your Take? Religious liberty or blatant discrimination? Who’s next? Let’s talk about it.

 

Thanks to our friend Trudy for recommending this video!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Too Sensitive?

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas thinks Americans are too sensitive about race, claiming the nation is more "difference-conscious" now than in the 1960s. He also stated that as the first black kid in Savannah, Georgia, to go to a white school, the issue of race rarely came up. Interesting comment from a man who grew in the Jim Crow South. Several of our listeners have also accused me of being too sensitive when it comes to race. Let’s talk about it! My question this week comes from one of our faithful listeners Jesse.

What do you think of Justice Thomas’ assertion that society in general is overly sensitive when it comes to race especially on the heels of the Jordan Davis case?



 

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

What's Your Take?

Dr. Carter G. Woodson , proclaimed  the second week of February to be  Negro History Week back in 1926 honoring the birthdays of  Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Dr. Woodson stated that “We should emphasize not Negro history, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world void of national bias, race hate, and religious prejudice” The question of how we celebrate our history and prepare for our future is a question that has been reverberating in our communities for years especially during Black History Month. How far have we actually come in the last 88 years to achieve Dr. Woodson’s goal. The question of whether Black History Month is still necessary and viable has been raised by several of our listeners.
What’s Your Take? Is Black History Month relevant in 2014?

Monday, January 27, 2014

What's Your Take?

Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman admittedly went on a highly publicized postgame rant after the NFC championship game but the aftermath of the coverage of the incident has sparked a national discussion regarding perceptions and the use of racially charged “code “words. News accounts reveal that the label “thug” was uttered over 600 times on TV the day after the incident. Sherman has suggested that being called a thug is the “accepted way of calling someone the N-word nowadays.”


What’s Your Take? Has “thug” become the new “N” word?

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

What's Your Take?

Specific problems including economic disparities, unemployment and racism still plague America and the African American community. One of our faithful listeners Evelyn Jackson suggested a question for discussion this week.

How should we approach the issues facing our community in 2014? Do you think Dr. King's brand of activism and marches would work in this era?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

What's Your Take?

Half of all Black males in the United States have been behind bars by age 23, according to a new study. Analyzing data from 1997 through 2008, the study found that 30 percent of Black men have experienced at least one arrest by age 18, while 22 percent of White males that age have been arrested. The number rose to 49 percent of Black men by age 23, with White males coming in at 38 percent. While the specifics involving this particular study is being challenged by some academics, clearly, there is undisputedly a problem when it comes to the arrests and prosecution of young Black males considering the fact that African Americans reportedly only  account for only  13 percent of the population.


What’s your take? What should America’s and especially Black America’s response be to this scourge on our community?



 

Monday, January 06, 2014

Is There A Downside?

The  Ray Charles  song “let’s go get stoned” is now a legal reality in the state of Colorado as of January 1, 2014. Like alcohol, residents 21 years old or older can purchase up to an ounce from a licensed retailer. Colorado became the first state in the nation, and the first government in the world, to control and regulate a legal recreational marijuana industry. Colorado voters also approved a 25 percent tax on all recreational-marijuana sales that are expected to generate roughly $70 million in additional revenue for the state in 2014.Eager customers have kept the marijuana brokers busy and lawmakers are excited about the additional revenue. National polls overwhelmingly support legalization.  Reports reveal that more than 650,000 people were arrested in 2011 just for marijuana possession.


But is there a downside? What’s Your Take? What are the pros and cons of the legalization of marijuana?



 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas?

 A Recent USA Today article revealed that "nine in 10 Americans will celebrate Christmas this year, but a new poll shows that increasing numbers see the holiday as more tinsel than gospel truth. This year more than ever, Americans prefer that stores and businesses welcome them with the more generic "Happy Holidays" or "Season's Greetings" than "Merry Christmas," according to a survey by the Public Religion Research Institute in partnership with Religion News Service."

What's Your Take ? What does Christmas mean to you and your family? Happy Holidays or  Merry Christmas?

Monday, December 09, 2013

Nelson Mandela

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” A quote from Nelson Mandela , who led the emancipation of South Africa from white minority rule and served as his country’s first black president.


What attributes should we adopt here in America from the legacy of Nelson Mandela, who will forever be known as an iconic international symbol of peace resistance and change?



 

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Knockout Game :Real or Myth?

Random acts of violence by Black teens are sweeping the nation if you believe the accounts of many in the mainstream media. The so called Knockout Game takes place when young people randomly assault strangers in an attempt to knock them out with one punch.  Suggestions that these attacks are racially motivated have only added to the fear in urban communities.
What’s Your Take? Should a few documented instances of knockouts by teens support the claims of an epidemic? What do you think is behind the sensationalism?



 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Self Defense?

Racial tensions are growing surrounding the case of a Detroit-area man who shot and killed unarmed 19-year-old Renisha McBride. Theodore Paul Wafer has been charged with second-degree murder, after days of pressure from her relatives seeking an arrest. McBride was killed when she went to 54-year-old Wafer's porch seeking help after a car crash, according to authorities. McBride was "bloodied, disoriented and appeared to be confused" after the crash, according to witnesses, Wafer, who claimed the 12 gauge shotgun went off by accident, was also charged with manslaughter and possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony. The prosecutor would not comment on allegations that race played a factor.
What’s Your Take? Do you think race is a factor in this case? Did the homeowner reasonably believe he was acting in self-defense? Will justice be served?

Monday, November 11, 2013

What's Your Take?

Kanye West’s latest publicity stunt of including the Confederate Battle Flag on several pieces of his tour merchandise  has found both supporters and detractors. West stated "The Confederate flag represented slavery in a way. That's my abstract take on what I know about it, right? So I wrote the song, 'New Slaves.' So I took the Confederate flag and made it my flag. It's my flag now. Now what you gonna do?"


What's Your Take? Publicity stunt aside,how do you feel about the suggestion that co- opting a symbol that in this case has split our nation since 1861 can somehow detract from its original intent?  



 

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Modern Day Slavery

The movie “12 Years a Slave”, the story of Soloman Northrup, a free Black man who was kidnapped in Washington DC in 1841 and sold into slavery has been the buzz of Hollywood the past couple of weeks.  Northrup, stripped of life as a free man was forced to labor in the state of Louisiana for 12 years before being freed. There are nearly 21 million people that are still victims of forced labor across the world, trapped in jobs which they were coerced or deceived into and which they cannot leave, according to 2012 statistics from the International Labour Organization.  Human trafficking, cyber sex trafficking and the growing industrial prison complex are just some examples of how many of us are still enslaved in this 21st century.   

What is your definition of Modern Day Slavery and what do we need to do to become truly free?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

What's Your Take?

Treating yourself to expensive designer fashion at a high end department store shouldn’t be a crime if you are a person of color. Trayvon Christian, who is African American, has filed a lawsuit after being handcuffed, arrested and taken to the local precinct after purchasing a $350 belt from Barneys in New York City. Christian was reportedly released with an apology from the police.  The lawsuit alleges that as Christian exited the store, undercover officers approached him and asked “how a young black man such as himself could afford to purchase such an expensive belt."


What your take? Have you ever been profiled while shopping? Tell us your story.



 

Monday, October 21, 2013

What's Your Take?

A political cartoon in the New York Daily News with the caption"Archaic Symbols of Pride and Heritage "is raising eyebrows by comparing the Washington Redskins  logo to a swastika and the confederate flag.The Richmond Free Press has announced it is dropping the Redskins nickname for the Washington NFL team from its pages, calling it racist, insulting and divisive.

What’s Your Take? How do you feel about the suggestion that these symbols of heritage and pride are nothing more than blatant racism contributing to the seemingly growing racial divide in America? How do you define racism?

 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Is it about ObamaCare or Obama?

The suggestion that racial resentment in the GOP is behind the war on the Affordable Health Care Act which led to the shutdown has been a hot topic over the past couple of weeks. Reportedly, the single group that is most disproportionately likely to be excluded from health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act is poor African Americans because the Republican-controlled states where they live are refusing Medicaid expansion. Is it a coincidence that the majority of states in the Deep South have refused the free money from the federal government to expand Medicaid to cover the millions of American working poor who earn too much to qualify for the program now?
What’s Your Take? What role if any in your opinion has race played in the government shutdown? Is it about ObamaCare or Obama? Is this the NEW Southern Strategy?



 

Tuesday, October 08, 2013

What's Your Take?

Miriam Carey, the 34 year old licensed dental hygienist from Stamford, Conn who led DC police on a high speed car chase last week from the White House to the Capitol suffered from post partum depression, according to her mother. The family of Miriam Carey, whose one-year-old daughter Erica was in the car with her during the encounter has questioned the use of deadly force by police. Law enforcement sources said Carey did not shoot a gun and there was no indication she had one.


What’s Your Take? Was the use of deadly force justified?



 

Monday, September 30, 2013

What's Your Take?

Marissa Alexander who is serving 20 years in prison for firing a shot at her estranged husband during an argument will get a new trial, though she will not be able to invoke a "stand your ground" defense, an appeals court ruled Thursday. The 1st District Court of Appeal ruled that Alexander deserves a new trial because the trial judge handling her case did not properly instruct the jury regarding what is needed to prove self-defense.The ruling said the instructions required Alexander to prove self-defense "beyond a reasonable doubt." But the court also made it clear in its ruling that the judge was right to block Alexander from using the state's "stand your ground" law as a way to defend her actions. That law generally removes people's duty to retreat in the face of possible danger and allows them to use of deadly force if they believe their lives are in danger.

What’s Your Take? From what you know of the case should Marissa Alexander be allowed to invoke  Stand Your Ground as a defense?

 

Monday, September 23, 2013

SHOWDOWN?

Here we go again! Most nonessential federal operations will come to an end September 30th if Congress fails to fund a spending bill. House Republicans advanced a bill on Friday by a 230-189 tally almost strictly along party lines that would continue funding the government at current spending levels for nearly three months, but would strip money to fund The Affordable Health Care Act. The bill which has little chance of passing the Senate has the promise of a veto from President Obama if passed.


What’s your take? Republicans have voted 42 times to repeal or defund Obamacare. My question this week is two- fold. Will there be a government shut down and do you think Obamacare will be funded?

Monday, September 16, 2013

What's Your Take?

A recent poll has echoed the sentiments of several of our listeners and responders last week on the Tanya Free and Friends Talk Show. The President’s overall approval rate remains at 45%.The poll also revealed that only 42% of Americans approve of his handling of foreign affairs and thirty-one percent of approve of his handling of the situation in Syria. In stark contrast, African Americans continue to support the President when it comes to overall performance. An average of 89% of African Americans surveyed approve of his performance from 2009-2013.

What’s Your Take? Where is the disconnect?  Why is it so difficult for many African Americans to disagree with the President when warranted? Why is it that any form of criticism is considered to be a lack of support? Do you think this blanket approval is deserved? On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate President Obama’s overall performance?



 

Monday, September 09, 2013

Do You Feel Safer?

Wednesday marks the 12 year anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center Towers in New York City. The shock of this year’s Boston Marathon bombing that killed 3 people and injured hundreds served as a reminder that the threat of terrorism is far from gone. Reports reveal that over 1,200 government organizations and almost 2000 private companies work on programs related to counterterrorism, homeland security and intelligence in about 10,000 locations across the United States.


As we take this time out to remember the fallen heroes and innocent people who lost their lives twelve years ago, do you feel any safer today than you did after the  2001 attacks?  How will you observe the 9/11 anniversary?

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Going It Alone?

The debate over if and how the US should respond to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria continues in Washington and across America. Great Britain, one of America’s closest allies rejected military action last week. Secretary of State John Kerry declared last Friday that the U.S. had a moral obligation to punish Syria for using chemical weapons. A recent poll revealed almost 8 in 10 said they wanted the president to sell Congress on military action before an attack.

What’s Your Take? How do you feel about John Kerry’s contention that we have a moral obligation to go it alone in Syria? Do you agree with President Obama’s decision to seek Congressional approval before military action?

Monday, August 19, 2013

Mayor Bloomberg Thinks People Living in Public Housing Should Be Fingerprinted:

Mayor Bloomberg suggested Friday that New York City public housing residents should be fingerprinted as a way to fight crime in the system's 334 buildings."The people that live there, most of them, want more police protection... If you have strangers walking in the halls of your apartment building, don’t you want somebody to stop and say, ‘Who are you? Why’re you here? What we really should have is fingerprinting to get in....."

What's Your Take on the Mayor's suggestion?

Monday, August 12, 2013

What's Your Take?

Last week’s discussion of a poll that revealed that Americans, including African Americans, believe that African Americans are more racist than whites or Hispanics has sparked the question of how we define racism in the 21st century. Definitions of racism range from the belief of inherent superiority of a particular race to simply racial prejudice or discrimination. Many people also equate racism with the practice and advocacy of discrimination. The question of whether African Americans in general have the power to influence and or enforce institutional racism is the focus of my question this week.

 
What’s Your Take? How do you define racism? Do you think African Americans really have the power to discriminate and the ability to be racist?
 
 

Monday, August 05, 2013

What's Your Take?

 The superintendent of an Arkansas school district recently submitted a proposal that would allow teachers and janitors to carry 9mm handguns on campus in response to the tragedy at Sandy Hook. School Teachers and other staff members reportedly underwent 53 hours of training during the summer.

What’s Your Take on armed school staff? Parents, how do you feel about sending your child to a school where the teachers are armed with 9mm handguns? Teachers, how do you feel about accepting the additional duty of an armed security guard?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

What's Your Take?

San Diego Mayor Bob Filner and New York mayoral hopeful Anthony Weiner are the latest politicians campaigning to survive a sex scandal. Elliot Spitzer, Mark Sanford and Bill Clinton are among the many examples of politicians that found a way to find forgiveness and redemption in the eyes of voters? Research has found that 73% of incumbent lawmakers involved in any kind of scandal make it to general elections, and 81% of those go on to win.

Can you and should you overlook sexual improprieties in a candidate? How would a candidate’s morals affect your decision at the ballot box?

Monday, July 22, 2013

What's Your Take?

The George Zimmerman trial has put the spotlight on the legal and moral complexities of Stand Your Ground Laws across the country. Calls for a boycott of Florida have echoed across the country led by legendary entertainer Stevie Wonder who has reportedly stated that he will not perform in Florida until its Stand Your Ground law is "abolished." He added that he won't perform in any state that recognizes the law.
What’s your take? Do you agree with a boycott of Florida? Do you think a boycott would lead to the repeal or revision of Stand Your Ground?

Monday, July 15, 2013

What's Your Take?

The NAACP and other civil rights groups have expressed outrage over the not guilty verdict in the  George Zimmerman trial and are urging the Justice Department  to pursue civil rights charges against Zimmerman.

What's your take? Was justice served? Should the Justice Department re-open its probe into this case?

Monday, July 08, 2013

What's Your Take?

An anti-porn group has demanded the Pentagon take some magazines off the shelves at military bases because they are "sexually exploitative". The Morality in Media group says military wives have complained to them that the easy access to porn at bases is breaking up their marriages. The group has also tied explicit magazines with sexual assault issues in the military.
What’s your take? Does the sale of explicit magazines on military bases contribute to the harassment and sexual assault issues in the armed forces?



 

Monday, July 01, 2013

What's Your Take?

Britain may allow a controversial technique to create babies using DNA from three people, a move that would help couples avoid passing on rare genetic diseases, the country's top medical officer says.The new techniques help women with faulty mitochondria, the energy source in a cell, from passing on to their babies defects that can result in such diseases as muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, heart problems and mental retardation. About one in 200 children is born every year in Britain with a mitochondrial disorder. Read more HERE!
 

Should government be able to regulate parenting? Is this genetic engineering gone too far?





 

Monday, June 24, 2013

What's Your Take?

An all woman jury has been selected for the trial of George Zimmerman. Five white women and a woman who sources report is half-black and half-Hispanic were chosen to serve on the jury in the trial of the neighborhood watchman charged with gunning down 17 year old Trayvon Martin. Jury experts disagree on whether the juror’s views on guns are more important than their gender or race.

What’s Your Take? Will the all female jury favor the defense or the prosecution?



 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

What's Your Take?

A decision in the federal class action trial surrounding the New York police “Stop and Frisk” is expected soon. Known as a "250" within the New York Police Department, the right to stop, question and pat down anyone deemed suspicious is a Supreme Court-approved tactic available to law enforcement across the country.
Black and Hispanic residents reportedly make up only 23 and 29 percent of New York City’s population respectively, even though 84 percent of the recorded stops have been young men of color and only around 6 percent of the stops have lead to an arrest.

What’s Your Take on the policy of Stop and Frisk in New York City?
Is it Racial Profiling or do you agree with Mayor Bloomberg that it is a crucial crime fighting tool ?



Monday, June 10, 2013

Can You Hear Me Now?

The Obama administration has been under the spotlight over the past couple of weeks,first due the admission that four American citizens have been killed overseas in secret drone strikes, then the Justice Department’s subpoena of Associated Press reporters’ phone logs and now revelations of secret surveillance of Americans phone and internet records. The President said that “Nobody is listening to your telephone calls,” and “They are not looking at people’s names, and they’re not looking at content. But by sifting through this so-called metadata, they may identify potential leads with respect to folks who might engage in terrorism”. 

What’s Your Take? How should we strike a balance between national security and the perceived erosion of personal privacy?



 

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Too Extreme?

Just when we thought Republicans couldn’t get any more extreme, here comes Virginia Lieutenant Governor candidate Bishop E.W. Jackson, the GOP’s first African American candidate for statewide office since 1988.

Jackson reportedly tweeted in 2008 during President Obama’s campaign for president,“ I love America. I love God. I am black. Obama does not love America & does not love God. His being black is not enough!”More recent comments have included referring to gays as “perverted” and “sick” and that Planned Parenthood has been “far more lethal” to blacks “than the KKK. He even called the Constitution’s original clause to count African Americans as three-fifths of a person an “anti-slavery amendment.” Jackson stands by his comments and states that he doesn’t have “anything to rephrase or apologize for.”

What’s your take? How do you view his comments? Do you think Bishop Jackson is too extreme to be elected?

Monday, May 20, 2013

TanyaFree.com Question of the Week

As the Supreme Court considers challenges to same sex marriages, parallels have been made to the Supreme Court case in 1967 that ruled that states could not prohibit two people from different racial backgrounds from marrying. Interracial marriages still only represent about 8% of all the marriages in 2012.Another poll from last year revealed that 29% of respondents in Mississippi still believe that interracial marriage should be illegal.

My question this week is two-fold.Do you think the comparison of interracial marriage and same sex marriage is a legitimate one and how do you really feel about interracial relationships?



 

Monday, May 13, 2013

What's Your Take?

A recent poll revealed that Americans have lost confidence in the President’s ability to get things done. Two third of those surveyed believe the President is fighting hard to get things done but twice as many blame the Republicans for the lack of compromise in Washington.

What’s your take? If you had the opportunity to sit down with President Obama, what advice would you give him to help “get some things done” despite the opposition?



 

Monday, May 06, 2013

What's Your Take?

NBA veteran Jason Collins has been front and center in the media over the past few days after announcing that he is gay. President Obama and fellow NBA players Kobe Bryant and Dwayne Wade are among the many that have offered support and applauded his decision. Some  journalists have even equated  this “first” with  Jackie Robinson’s “first” of breaking of the color barrier in professional baseball back in 1947.

How do you feel about the comparison? Should Jason Collins be considered the “Jackie Robinson” of 2013?

Monday, April 29, 2013

Game Changer?

U.S. officials have reported that the Syrian government has “probably” used chemical weapons. President Obama said that any use of chemical weapons by Syria would be a "game changer," but cautioned that the United States needs more evidence that President Assad has used the deadly agents against his people.

What’s your take? How should the United States respond if in fact chemical weapons were used?



 

Monday, April 22, 2013

What's Your Take?

The second suspect apprehended in the Boston Marathon bombing, who reportedly became an American citizen in 2012, will not be read his Miranda rights initially because the government will be invoking a public safety exception, according to an anonymous Justice official.  The public safety exception permits law enforcement officials to engage in a limited and focused unwarned interrogation of a suspect and allows the government to introduce the statement as evidence in court.

How do you feel about law enforcement officers being able to interrogate an American suspect without first providing a warning of rights and legal representation?



 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Real Threat?

Threats by North Korea over the past few weeks were mostly regarded without merit and dismissed as rhetoric and posturing by the world’s youngest head of state. A new assessment by the Pentagon’s intelligence arm has concluded for the first time, with “moderate confidence,” that North Korea has learned how to make a nuclear weapon small enough to be delivered by a ballistic missile.
Director of National Intelligence, James R. Clapper Jr., released a somewhat contradictory statement saying that “North Korea has not yet demonstrated the full range of capabilities necessary for a nuclear armed missile.”

What’s your take? Considering the mixed messages from the intelligence community, do you believe North Korea is a serious threat? How do you think the US should proceed at this point with North Korea?

Monday, April 08, 2013

Out of Step

Nationwide, 88 percent of Americans surveyed said they favored universal background checks while only 10 percent said they were opposed including 85 percent of gun owners. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has stated that any bill that passes the Senate on gun control must include broader background checks, but will not include a controversial ban on assault weapons. Reid said he would allow amendments limiting high-capacity magazines and a ban on assault weapons, though their chances on the floor are grim.

Why do you think Congress seems to be so out of step with the majority of Americans?



 

Monday, April 01, 2013

What's Your Take?

A New York City campaign targeting teenage pregnancy has drawn criticism that the ads reinforce negative stereotypes about teenage mothers without offering any information to help girls prevent unplanned pregnancies. Haydee Morales, vice president for education and training at Planned Parenthood of New York City, said the organization was “shocked and taken aback” by the tone of the new campaign. “It’s not teen pregnancies that cause poverty, but poverty that causes teen pregnancy,” she said.


What’s your take? Does teen pregnancy cause poverty or is poverty at the root of teen pregnancy as the research indicates? Take a look at the research  and share your opinions about this campaign and whether you think it will reduce teen pregnancy.

Check out the other ads HERE

 

Monday, March 25, 2013

March Madness?

Basketball is in the air and on the airwaves. TV ad revenue alone for the 2012 NCAA Basketball tournament reportedly surpassed the $1 billion mark second only to the NFL in terms of ad sales for a postseason sporting event. With millions made in ads and seven figure salaries for top tier coaches, has the time come for student athletes to be compensated for their efforts and receive what many perceive as their fair share of the pie?



 

Monday, March 18, 2013

Diversity?

Congressional Black Caucus Chairwomen Rep. Marcia Fudge has raised concerns about the absence of diversity in President Obama’s cabinet. NY Representative Charlie Rangel has described the lack of diversity as “embarrassing as hell”. The President has reportedly filled ten vacancies over the past three months and has yet to appoint an African American. Three top level positions remain open. What’s your take?

Why do you think as he enters his second term, President Obama is  behind both Presidents’ Clinton and  GW Bush when it comes to the numbers of African Americans in his cabinet?



 

Monday, March 11, 2013

American Drone Zone?

Kentucky Republican Senator Rand Paul spoke for 13 hours last week in a filibuster of John Brennan’s confirmation as CIA Director. He stated “I wanted everybody to know that our Constitution is precious and that no American should be killed by a drone without first being charged with a crime." Attorney General Eric Holder didn’t entirely rule out a scenario under which a drone strike would be ordered against Americans on U.S. soil, but he could only see it being considered in an extraordinary circumstance. White House spokesman Jay Carney said Thursday that “the President has not and would not use drone strikes against American citizens on American soil.”


How do you feel about the use of drone strikes against American citizens? Could you ever envision a situation that would justify the killing of an American not yet charged with a crime?

Monday, March 04, 2013

How Much Does Race Matter?

A recent report has revealed that despite the fact that President Obama won a higher percentage of the White vote than any Democratic nominee since 1976, racial resentment has in fact increased during his first term. My question this week is two-fold. What do you think is at the root of this increasing  racial divide and  is the notion of a post racial America realistic?

Monday, February 25, 2013

Conflicting Views

The NRA has launched a national program that they claim will help protect schools from future incidents of violence by utilizing armed resource officers in every single school in the city. Missing from their plan is any reference to any restrictions on gun sales or expanding background checks or how these armed resource officers would be paid. In contrast, a recent poll revealed that a majority of Americans favor stricter gun control laws and a nationwide ban on semi-automatic weapons as part of a strategy to reduce gun violence. This same poll indicated that Americans believe controlling gun ownership is more important than protecting the right to own guns.
What’s your take? What is the answer to protecting schools and reducing gun violence in America?

Monday, February 18, 2013

Should America Reinstate The Draft?

NY Congressman Charlie Rangel believes for real equality, the US should reinstate the draft and open it up to women. He further states that the draft would force America to think twice about involvement in wars. Those who did not want to perform military service could instead apply to serve in the Peace Corps or AmeriCorps. Unlike the last time the draft was implemented in the United States, there would be no exception for students in college or universities.

What’s your take? Should America reinstate the draft?



 

Monday, February 11, 2013

The Buck Stops Where?

A Justice Department memo, given to select members of Congress last year, says the U.S. government can use lethal force against American citizens overseas who are operational leaders of al Qaeda or its affiliates. The Supreme Court has also held that the military may use force against an American who is part of enemy forces.
Do you think drone strikes on U.S. citizens abroad should have some sort of judicial oversight?

Monday, February 04, 2013

Is Black History Month Relevant in 2013?

The theme of Black History Month 2013 is “At the crossroads of Freedom and Equality” marking two important anniversaries in the history of African Americans; the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. While we reflect on these and other milestones this February, the question of how we celebrate our history and prepare for our future is a question that has been reverberating in our communities for years. The question of whether Black History Month is still necessary and viable is the subject of my question this week. Does Black History Month need a second look? Is Black History Month relevant in 2013?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Women in Combat?

Outgoing Defense Secretary Leon Panetta lifted the military ban on women in combat last week. The shift in policy comes on the heels of calls for a fully inclusive military and the President’s inaugural address promising expanded opportunities to women. This decision could open more than 230,000 jobs, many in Army and Marine infantry units, to women. Some have raised questions of strength and performance and suggestions that the American public would not tolerate large numbers of women being killed in war.

What’s your take? How do you feel about women on the front lines in combat?  

Monday, January 21, 2013

Legacy?

It is official; the President has been sworn into office for his second term. A recent poll revealed Americans want the President to focus on jobs, reducing corruption in federal government and reducing the budget as priorities. What do you think should be at the top of the list? What will be the legacy of the Obama administration and who will be positioned to carry the torch?

 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Black On Black Crime?

More often than not, Black on Black violence has been reduced to a headline on the six o’clock news featuring interviews with devastated family members and friends of the victim along with the obligatory candlelight vigils. Just like the recent attention and extensive coverage of the Sandy Hook tragedy, the record number of murders in Black communities of Chicago and other urban cities should warrant the same media attention and concern.  The number of murders in Chicago is predicted to surpass 2012 with 12 homicides already reported this year.

Why is the discussion of Black on Black crime almost nonexistent even in our own community?

How should the issue of violence in our communities across the country be addressed?         

       
 

Monday, January 07, 2013

What Needs To Happen?

The Sandy Hook tragedy and recent mass shootings and incidents of gun violence have kept the issue of gun control and reform on the front burner. The President has promised to support renewal of an assault weapons ban, restrictions on the size of ammunition clips, and improved background checks on gun owners.

What do you think needs to happen to keep our schools and community safe? Do you agree with the NRA that placing armed guards in our schools will make our kids safer?

Monday, December 31, 2012

What Can We Do?

Gridlock continues to be the name of the game in Washington. What have our elected officials done for us lately? Democrats and Republicans have both failed the American people. Is it partisan gridlock or incompetence bordering on malfeasance? The end result is the same.

The real question is how long will we allow our elected officials to operate in their  Congressional Bubble that affords them government backed health care, financial security and a lifetime pension while many working Americans are struggling without a safety net trying not to go over their own fiscal cliffs?

How do we pop the Congressional Bubble and clean up this mess in 2013?



 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Is It Time For A Ban ?

The recent mass shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut and the mall in Oregon have renewed the national debate over gun control. The United States has the highest rate of gun ownership in the world, with 88.8 guns per 100 people.
 
Why do you think even the discussion of limiting access to assault weapons is met with such opposition? Do you support the reinstatement of a federal ban on assault weapons?



 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Decision Time

The Supreme Court has agreed to consider challenges to same sex marriage on two fronts next year. The first questions the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, testing whether the federal government can deny federal benefits to legally married same-sex couples--- benefits automatically granted to heterosexual couples. The court will also hear challenges to Proposition 8, the ballot measure approved by California's voters in 2008 that defined marriage as between a man and a woman, overturning a state high-court ruling earlier that year that had permitted gays and lesbians to wed.

Regardless of your opinions of same sex marriage, do you think benefits should be denied to legally married couples? Should a state proposition overturn a court ruling? How do you think the Supreme Court will rule?  


 

Monday, December 03, 2012

License To Kill?

A Florida gun collector has pleaded not guilty and is considering invoking Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law to a murder charge alleging that he opened fire on a car full of unarmed teenagers, killing 17 year old Jordan Davis, in an altercation that police say stemmed from loud music. The fact that shooter drove off after the shooting has been labeled as "unconscionable" by Jordan’s mother. The shooter, 45 year old Michael Dunn was reportedly arrested a day later 173 miles away from the shooting. His lawyer stated that Dunn felt “threatened” by the kids who were blasting loud music, blaming his fear on the lyrics of the music.

How do you view this case? Do you think these laws are perceived by some as a license to kill?



 

Monday, November 26, 2012

What's the Real Deal?

Speculation that President Obama may tap Ambassador Susan Rice as Secretary of State has raised the ire of 97 members of the House of Representatives and Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain who stated that Ambassador Rice is “not qualified.” McCain states that he will do everything in his power to block her from the cabinet position due to her role in the administration’s response to the deadly attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

What do you think? Is this really about qualifications or could it be that  race and gender are playing a role in what some have described as a bizarre and unfounded attack on this UN Ambassador who was confirmed in 2009 by unanimous consent?



 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Legal or Not ?

Colorado and Washington have become the first states in the nation to approve the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. It will now be legal under Colorado and Washington law for adults 21 years and older to possess up to an ounce of marijuana. In Colorado, people will be able to grow as many as six plants. In Washington, users will have to buy their marijuana from state-licensed providers. But here is a big problem, the federal government still views marijuana as a Schedule I prohibited substance.


What do you think? How do you feel about the voter’s wishes versus the federal government’s position? Should the federal government allow these states to have a regulated marijuana market?



 

Monday, November 05, 2012

Day One

Campaign 2012 has finally come to an end. The endless negative TV ads will soon be replaced by endless Christmas commercials and the obligatory Black Friday all night once in a lifetime specials. The cable TV political pundits and prognosticators will soon turn their thoughts to 2016 and we will be lulled back into our respective cocoons for another four years waiting for another round of incessant negative ads. My question this week, before all of the campaign promises become a distant memory, is what one issue do you want the President to tackle on day one?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Attacking the Victim?

A Florida judge has ruled that defense attorneys for admitted killer George Zimmerman have the right to subpoena the social media accounts and school records of Trayvon Martin. Martin’s parents feel that school records are not relevant and Martin family attorney Martin Crump called what Zimmerman’s lawyers were doing as “the old classic method of attacking the victim.”

How do you feel about the judge’s ruling?



 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Race Neutral?

The Supreme Court heard arguments last week on the constitutionality of the consideration of race in college admissions. A white female alleges in the case of Fisher vs. University of Texas that she was denied admission to the university because of her race. Fisher wants college admissions to be “completely race neutral”. This case has renewed the debate over whether affirmation action is necessary in 2012.

What do you think? Is this a case of reverse discrimination? How would you define race neutral? Have we reached the point that affirmation action programs are no longer needed?   

 

Monday, October 08, 2012

Another Reality Check

President Obama’s less than stellar debate appearance last week has been the buzz of the political pundits the past few days. The spin doctors have offered a litany of excuses; the latest excuse blamed his lackluster performance on the altitude. What does the President need to do to rebuild the momentum lost?

Mitt Romney has been hailed the victor despite the fact that the fact checkers reveal that a lot of what he espoused was untrue. He seemed to contradict most of what he had built his “conservative” platform around. Many have hailed his shift back to the middle as a brilliant campaign strategy.

Who is the real Mitt Romney? The self described conservative from the Republican Primaries or the moderate New England Governor known for working with Democrats and RomneyCare? 
 

Monday, October 01, 2012

Face to Face

The first Presidential Debate of this campaign season is Wednesday October 3rd. What hot button topics are you expecting to be addressed?

What is the one question that you would you ask if you had the opportunity?

 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Out of Line?

 An American University professor is facing backlash for her decision to not only bring her infant child to the first day of her “Sex, Gender Culture” class but to openly breastfeed the child  in front of the 40 or so students in attendance. Responding to criticism from students and the University, the professor has since published an essay complaining of a hostile environment. 

What do you think? Was the professor out of line? How should the university respond?        
 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Shoot First and Aim Later?

Mitt Romney’s recent comments attacking the Obama administration for what he described as “apologizing” instead of condemning recent attacks on Libya and Egypt have left Republican and Democrats condemning the politicizing of a tragedy that left an American Ambassador and three others dead. President Obama says Mitt Romney didn’t have the facts right and “seems to have a tendency to shoot first and aim later.” Mr. Obama said that as president, he has learned it’s important to — in his words— “make sure that the statements that you make are backed up by the facts.”


What's your take? What do you think about the comments?



 

Monday, September 10, 2012

SNAP

The Department of Agriculture reports that nearly 1 in 7 Americans participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the food stamp program known as SNAP. Some health care advocates and politicians are pushing to discontinue food stamp purchases for items high in salt, fat or sugar. SNAP reform bills are pending in nine states that would restrict the purchase of soda, potato chips and chewing gum.
What’s your take? Should the government limit consumer decisions in the grocery store?

Will excluding unhealthy choices make participants healthier?

Monday, September 03, 2012

Are You Better Off?

“Are you better off now than you were four years ago” - a question the Romney campaign is touting as a referendum on the President. In his own defense, the President raises the question with a wider perspective, “Are you better off now than you were prior to him taking office?” Regardless of political affiliation, the question at hand, in my opinion is which candidate is best equipped to put the country in a better position four years from now.

My question this week is two-fold. Are you personally better off now than you were when President Obama took office in 2009 and which presidential candidate do you think is best equipped to put the country in better shape four years from now?



 

Monday, August 27, 2012

How much is too much?

In another of a string of outlandish and in this case ,racist comments this campaign season, a Texas judge, yes a Republican elected judge, is under fire for suggesting that the nation could experience civil unrest, civil disobedience, possibly civil war if President Barack Obama is re-elected. He also called for a well-equipped force to battle the United Nations troops that he said the President might bring in.
Texas Democrats and sane people everywhere are calling for his resignation. Believe it or not, the county's Republican Party chief has accused the Democrats of "opportunism" and said he called the judge and left him a message offering "moral support."
How much is too much? Should the Republican Party insist that this judge step down?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Support Wavering?

The national unemployment reportedly continues to hover around 8% while the rate of unemployed African Americans rose nearly a full percentage point to 14.4% in June. The report revealed that “this trend is not a new one, as the black unemployment rate has been roughly double that of whites since the government started tracking the figures in 1972.” The last time a Democratic incumbent President faced a Republican challenger with the Black unemployment rate this high was 1980. The unemployment rate was then 14.5% and contributed to Ronald Reagan receiving 14% of the African American vote, defeating Jimmy Carter.

We have had some heated debates over the past weeks regarding whether issues affecting the African American community are being largely ignored by both parties so far this campaign season. Some have predicted that President Obama can be expected to lose between 400,000 and 500,000 African American votes. My question this week is - How do you think rising African American unemployment will affect the President’s support from African Americans this November?



 

Monday, August 06, 2012

Is it OK to Vote Black?

Black voter participation peaked in 2008 driven by increased participation among Black women and younger voters “Overall, among all racial, ethnic and gender groups, black women had the highest voter turnout rate in November’s election -- a first.”  An African American State Senator from Wisconsin made national news last week when she told supporters “to vote for someone who looks like you.” How do you feel about the comment?

Is it OK for a Black person to only vote for other Blacks? Would you vote for or against a candidate solely on the basis of race? What about religious beliefs or sexual orientation?

 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Give Me A Break!

The issue of perceived racist comments by African Americans has caused many to question whether so called political correctness has gotten out of control. Politico’s Joe Williams lost his job a few weeks ago for inferring that Mitt Romney is more comfortable with “White Folks”. Was that a racist statement? Closer to home, one of my panelists was labeled a racist last week for statements about White people and their conquests around the globe. This self described brother accused me of being a racist simply for my silence and for refusing to ban my panelist for life. (see comments posted Wed July 25) Give me a break, aren’t these the same right wing nut jobs that conveniently invoke the first amendment to justify throwing every slur and epithet at our first African American President?

My question this week is what is YOUR definition of racism and does a Black person really have the ability and power to be racist?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Question of the Week

One of the weapons used in last week’s horrific Colorado massacre was banned in the United States from 1994 until 2004 under the Federal Assault weapons ban .The military style semi automatic AR-15 assault rifle can carry a magazine with more than 30 rounds. Politicians including former PA Governor Ed Rendell and NY mayor Michael Bloomberg are urging legislators to revisit the gun-control debate.

What do you think? What possible rationale would justify the continued sale of these deadly high power assault rifles?



 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Is it About Values?

Chicago’s murder rate is reportedly up 38% compared to this time last year, with the majority of the 270 murders described as gang related. Mayor Rahm Emanuel said “It’s not about crime, it’s about values.”

What do you think is behind this violent upswing of gang on gang violence? What suggestions would you give to the Mayor to curtail the gang murders in Chicago?


Monday, July 09, 2012

Doing The Right Thing?

A Florida lifeguard made the news last week when he was fired for saving a life. That’s right, saving a life! He admittedly disregarded rules and policy by leaving his zone to save the life of a man drowning in unprotected waters. Six of his fellow lifeguards were also fired for saying they would have done the same thing.

What do you think? Did he do the right thing? Given the company’s policy, what does this say about the state of our society and moral values? 

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Monday, June 25, 2012

Fast and Furious

Attorney General Eric Holder has testified eight times on Capitol Hill and provided over 7500 pages of documents related to Fast and Furious, a Mexican drug war operation that began in 2009,that he admits went terribly wrong resulting in the lost of illegal firearms ,two of which have been connected to the death of a federal agent.
Now, he has been cited for contempt by a congressional panel, thanks to Republicans, for failing to release materials related to an on-going investigation and court sealed wiretap applications.

Is this really contempt or simply political theater in an election year?



 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Next In Line?

President Obama has given major attention to the agendas of the LGBT and Latino communities over the past weeks.

Do you think the agenda of the African American community will receive similar attention considering the vast majority of African Americans are likely to support the President anyway? If so, what issues specific to the African American community do you think the President should address with the same sense of urgency and boldness?  

Monday, June 11, 2012

Ads,Ads and More Ads

The 2012 Presidential campaign is heating up with attention grabbing TV and radio ads. According to the Washington Post,TV ad buys are typically the single largest expenditure of a presidential campaign. A reported 162 million dollars has been spent so far just on television with 63% of those ads defined as negative.

How much of an influence will the ads have on your vote? 

Monday, June 04, 2012

Misunderstanding?

Bond has been revoked for George Zimmerman, admitted killer of unarmed 17 year old Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman and his wife have been accused of lying to the court about how much money they had available when bond was set at $150,000 in April. Prosecutors say they had $135,000 available and that Zimmerman also failed to surrender a second passport.
The defense says the finances are an innocent misunderstanding.
What do you think? Is this a misunderstanding or a true reflection of his lack of credibility?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Muddying the Waters?

GOP operatives have evidently decided on a campaign strategy that includes the contention that President Obama was never fully vetted prior to his election. Stories of old girlfriends, clips of Jeremiah Wright and birther conspiracies are all being thrown in the pot to muddy the waters to distract from the real issues facing America today.

What do you think about this strategy and do you agree with some pundits that this may end up being one of the nastiest Presidential campaigns in history?

  

Monday, May 14, 2012

Deal Breaker?

President Obama’s endorsement of the right of same sex couples to marry has dominated the news cycle for days. A recent poll has revealed that 53% of Americans agree that same sex marriages should be recognized by law is valid.
How do you think this polarizing issue will affect the 2012 presidential election?

How will the President’s stance affect your decision at the ballot box?



 

Monday, May 07, 2012

Is it Just or Justice?

What does it say about our society when elementary school children as young as kindergarten age are arrested and/or handcuffed by law enforcement? Just recently a first grader was suspended for alleged sexual harassment.

How do you feel about the disciplinary action taken at such an early age? How would you have handled the situations?  

 

Monday, April 30, 2012

How Safe Is Safe?

Recent reports of seafood deformities including eyeless shrimp and fish with lesions in the Gulf have raised questions from scientists and fisherman about poisoning of the food chain and the overall safety of the seafood.

BP and the government maintain that Gulf seafood is safe.   
What do you think? How comfortable are you eating seafood from the Gulf?

 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Should Mitt take a Stand?

Ted Nugent, who has endorsed Mitt Romney is standing by his inflammatory comments to the NRA that included that he would ”either be dead or in jail” by next year if President Obama is reelected. He accused the government of “wiping its ass with the constitution” and that “we need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November.Considering the media frenzy during the 2008 campaign that forced then Senator Obama to disavow and repudiate his minister of 20 years due to what was perceived as Anti-American comments, should Mitt Romney follow suit and repudiate these comments from his friend and supporter Ted Nugent?
 

Monday, April 16, 2012

What are the chances?

George Zimmerman has been charged with second degree murder, a criminal act demonstrating a depraved mind and disregard  for human life in the death of Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman has claimed self defense under the Florida Stand Your Ground Law which has been labeled by some as the “License to Murder Statute”.


What do you think are the chances that Zimmerman will be convicted of second degree murder?



 

Monday, April 09, 2012

Thug?

President Obama has been labeled a thug by some right wing conservatives after his statement that he is confident that the Supreme Court will not take what “would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress.”

What does it say about our society or our country when the President of the United States is referred to as a “thug”?

Monday, April 02, 2012

Must See TV?

Oprah Winfrey has expressed an interest in interviewing George Zimmerman, the killer of Trayvon Martin.

What do you think about her giving him the platform? Would you watch the interview?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Standing Ground?

The death of Trayvon Martin has sparked national attention and outrage. Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” Law that permits residents to use deadly force if they believe it necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm has allowed admitted killer George Zimmerman to remain free.

How do you feel about this law and do you think “Stand Your Ground” applies in this case?
 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Dirty Word?

Given the recent debate over birth control, contraceptive is now a dirty word. A bill proposed in Arizona would allow employers to deny health insurance for contraceptives based on religious objections. Women who wish to have their contraceptives covered would have to prove that they are using the pills for non reproductive reasons. Employers would have the right to fire women that wish to exercise their right to be sexually responsible with the use of contraceptives.

What do you think? How comfortable would you feel sharing your medical records with your employer?

Monday, March 12, 2012

What's your verdict?

A Montana federal judge’s racist email that included a joke involving bestiality and President Obama’s mother has drawn outrage and calls for him to step down amid questions of judgment, credibility and impartiality as a judge. He has apologized to the President and accepted responsibility.
Is his apology enough? Should he be allowed to remain on the bench? What consequences do you think should be levied?

Judge Richard Cebull 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Throwback?

New voter ID laws in Virginia have been described as a throwback to Jim Crow era politics. Voters who fail to bring required ID will receive a provisional ballot that will be vetted AFTER the election.  Democrats have challenged the evidence of substantial voter fraud. What do you think?

Preventing voter fraud or suppressing the minority vote?

Monday, February 06, 2012

High Alert

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has revealed a “strong likelihood” that Israel will attack Tehran sometime this spring in an attempt to prevent the escalation of Iran’s nuclear program.  Israeli facilities in North America are reported to be on high alert due to predicted threats from Iran.

Should the US engage militarily to support an Israeli attack or should America continue on a course of diplomatic sanctions?



 

Monday, January 30, 2012

Racist?

An ongoing conversation since my January 18th post  has raised an interesting question. The term racist, according to referral sources, is a belief that a particular race is superior and equates racism with the practice and advocacy of discrimination. What do you think? Can Black people be racist?


Do people of color really have the power to discriminate and ability to be racist?

 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

What were they thinking?

U.S. Marines joking and urinating on the bloody dead bodies of Taliban soldiers, “What were they thinking?”  Obviously, not about any sense of core values, respect and how these actions could jeopardize US –Afghan relations.  

What disciplinary actions do you think should be levied?



 

Monday, December 19, 2011

New DUI?

The National Transportation Safety Board recently recommended a nationwide ban on the use of cell phones while driving. According to the safety board, distracted driving is becoming the new DUI.   
What do you think? Should talking on cell phone while driving be prohibited?     

   
 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Suppression?

Two thirds of State legislatures have introduced new voter ID laws and elimination of early voting and same day registration. A 2006 Brennan Center Study revealed that 25% of African Americans are without an ID. What do you think?
Are the new voter ID laws and restrictions an effort to suppress the African American vote?

 

Monday, December 05, 2011

Too Much?

The National Defense Authorization Act has come under fire from the White House for provisions that would allow the indefinite detention of Americans suspected of terrorism arrested within the US.

How do you feel about the Act? Are we sacrificing too much in the name of national security?

  

Monday, November 28, 2011

Protected?

The Occupy Wall Street Movement continues to raise questions and add to the public debate over whether 24/7 camps in public spaces is protected freedom of assembly. Recent rulings in New York and other cities have resulted in restrictions and evictions.


How do you feel about the evictions and do you think they are an infringement of the protesters’ First Amendment rights?



 

Monday, November 21, 2011

Give Thanks

Thanksgiving Day, celebrated in America since 1863, is a time for reflection and giving thanks for our many gifts and blessings, even in these times of strained resources and economic uncertainty.
 What are you grateful for this Thanksgiving?

 

Monday, November 14, 2011

What's Going On?

Thousands of supporters of Penn State Head Coach Joe Paterno have protested his firing, despite the fact that he  failed to report allegations of the rape of a young boy to police in 2002.The State Police Commissioner has described Paterno’s actions as a lapse in “moral responsibility”.

How do you feel about the University’s response to the scandal so far?

Monday, November 07, 2011

Who Would Have Thought?

Who would have thought GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain would take the lead over the much ballyhooed Rick Perry and would wind up in a dead heat in the polls with Mitt Romney despite allegations of sexual misconduct?

How do you feel about Herman Cain and do you think he will be the eventual nominee? 

 

Monday, October 31, 2011

Trading Places

Despite the number of American jobs lost as a result of previous U.S. trade agreements, Congress has recently passed free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama in what Washington believes will stimulate the economy and have a favorable impact on the job market.  
What do you think? How do you feel about these free trade agreements?  

    

Monday, October 24, 2011

Is It Time?

On the heels of the demise Muammar Qaddafi, President Obama announced the planned withdrawal of troops from Iraq by year’s end. Republican Senator Lindsay Graham has stated that the decision to pull out of Iraq is a serious mistake.

What do you think?  Is it time to bring the troops home?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Better Off?

President Obama conceded that “American people are not better off  than they were four years ago.”  The President’s transparency may be a day late and a dollar short.

What does the President need to do to turn the economy around?   

Monday, October 03, 2011

Two Weeks And Counting

The “Occupy Wall Street" movement against corporate greed and social inequality continues to grow and has garnered support from a diverse group including celebrities and demonstrators from across the political spectrum.

Why do you think this movement has been ignored for the most part by the mainstream media?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Tax Hike?

The President’s recent deficit reduction plan proposes a tax hike on those earning over $250K.  While most Republicans oppose any tax increases, several Democrats have expressed reservations about the $250K threshold.
 
What do you think? Do you agree that tax increases  are needed and if so, should the threshold be at $250K or  $1M as suggested by Democrats.
 

 

Monday, September 19, 2011

Too Much Doubt

Hundreds of thousands have signed petitions and rallied in support of Troy Davis who was convicted in Georgia twenty years ago for the murder of a police officer. Seven of nine witnesses have since recanted their testimony alleging police coercion and intimidation. With significant doubt, and a lack of physical evidence, how is it that there are still those in our midst that continue to call for and even cheer the execution of Mr. Davis?

Let your voice be heard! Sign the Petition!


 

Monday, September 12, 2011

Visitation Charge?

The State of Arizona has passed a law that allows the Department of Corrections to charge each family member a $25 one-time fee to visit an incarcerated relative. Some are calling the law unconstitutional.

What do you think? Should there be a visitation fee and is it constitutional?

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Let's Get Serious!

President Obama will address the nation Thursday to detail his vision for job creation and growth. Many supporters are demanding a bold job plan that includes middle class tax cuts and new stimulus spending.

What does the President need to say to show that he is serious about putting Americans back to work?

Friday, September 02, 2011

Dream Deferred?

The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in DC has found itself in the midst of controversy  not only because of the apparent over commercialization of the message of Dr. King but also the fact that the sculpture was designed by a Chinese sculptor and assembled by unpaid Chinese workers.

How do you feel about the fact that no American sculptors or construction workers were deemed worthy of the privilege to design and erect a statue of Dr. King?

 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Presidential Wake-up Call?

President Obama’s approval ratings have hit an all time low according to a recent poll. With a steep decline in economic confidence, a few members within his own party are calling for a Democratic Primary Challenge.

Should President Obama face a primary challenge? If yes, what challenger (s) would you support?



 

Monday, August 15, 2011

What's Going On?

The flash mob phenomenon that started out as an outlet for creative expression through spontaneous performances has now turned into violent riots and looting in cities spanning the globe from London to Philadelphia.

These incidents have been described as everything from political unrest to race riots.  What do you think is really behind the surge in violence and what needs to happen?

Monday, August 08, 2011

Minimal Exposure

Minimal national media attention has been given to the historic recall elections in Wisconsin. Several State Senators on both sides of the aisle are at risk due to outrage over the repeal of collective bargaining rights of public employee unions, signed into law by Governor Walker.

Why do you think these elections have been largely ignored by much of the media outside of the State of Wisconsin, especially considering the reported $30 million dollars that has poured from the outside to influence the outcome?  

Monday, August 01, 2011

Temperatures Rising

Sweltering triple digit temperatures coupled with the heated debt ceiling debate in Washington have put the country on edge. It is now August 1st and speculation of financial Armageddon still looms in the minds of some economists.

 How do you feel about Washington’s ability or inability to govern and their handling of the debt ceiling debacle?


Monday, July 25, 2011

Free Speech?

A federal appeals court recently ruled that a California man’s racist post suggesting that then Presidential Candidate Obama be shot and that "He will have a 50 cal in the head soon" is constitutionally protected free speech, even though he was found to be in possession of several weapons including a .50 caliber rifle when arrested.

Do you agree? Free Speech or Criminal Hate Speech?

 

Monday, July 18, 2011

How Much Is Enough?

Fundraising has surpassed the $35 million dollar mark among  2012 GOP presidential hopefuls and a whopping $86 million dollars are already in the coffers for President Obama.

How do you feel about the increasingly obscene amount of money needed to fund campaigns, especially now in the midst of an economic downturn and budget crisis?

 

Monday, July 11, 2011

What's the Deal?

On again, off again deficit reduction negotiations on Capitol Hill have included possible cuts in Medicare and Social Security to offset proposed revenue increases. Advocacy groups including the AARP are urging lawmakers to reject any proposal that would cut the benefits seniors have earned through a lifetime of hard work.

What do you think? Should Social Security and Medicare be on the table?

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Criminal Behavior?

The recent arrest of a 20 year old University of New Mexico football player for refusing to pull up his sagging pants on a US Airlines flight in San Francisco has been labeled as a clear case of racism by the NAACP. An airline employee said that his pants were below his butt and his boxers were showing. Ironically, the airline had no problem allowing a man wearing a woman’s bathing suit, thigh high stockings and high heels to fly just days prior to the arrest of the football player.



How do you define indecent exposure?

Sagging pants or a scantily clad man in a woman’s bathing suit and heels? 

Monday, June 27, 2011

Marriage?

New York is the latest state to move toward legalization of same sex marriages. President Obama stated “I believe that gay and lesbian couples deserve the same legal rights as every other couple in this country” but stopped short of endorsing gay marriages.

How do you feel about same sex marriages?            
 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Bull or Bear?

President Obama recently stated that “we are on the path of a recovery…”,but with unemployment on the rise, a housing market reportedly worst than the Great Depression along with a sputtering economy, there is speculation that we are headed toward a double dip recession.

What do you think?

Where do you think the economy is headed


 

 

Monday, June 13, 2011

Over and Out?

New York Congressman Anthony Weiner is now off to treatment after confessing that he sent explicit photos of himself on Twitter, after days of denial. The congressman has to date ignored calls from both sides of the aisle to step down.

While sex and lies are nothing new to politics, how do you feel this scandal will affect Weiner’s ability to govern?

Monday, June 06, 2011

Pass or Fail?

Presidential Hopeful Mitt Romney has joined the GOP chorus asserting that “President Obama has failed America” Political campaign rhetoric or fair assessment?

How would you grade the Obama administration and why?

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Same Rights

A federal judge in Virginia has overturned the ban on corporate political campaign contributions. Corporations now have the same rights to donate as you or I have as citizens.

What do you think of the judge’s ruling? How do you think it will affect the political playing field?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Is Now the Time?

President Obama’s plan to invest billions of dollars to spur democracy in the Middle East has received mixed reviews considering the escalating economic concerns here in the US.

Is the cost of democracy in the Middle East more than we can afford at this time?

Monday, May 16, 2011

Friend or Foe?

The close proximity of Osama bin Laden’s compound and Pakistani military facilities has led to speculation that the Pakistani military or its government was either complicit or incompetent.

Considering the billions of U.S. dollars to Pakistan to fight counter-terrorism, some lawmakers have suggested suspending aid. Should the US rethink its relationship with Pakistan or are they too valuable an asset to risk?

Monday, May 09, 2011

Path to...?

The Paul Ryan GOP 2012 budget resolution has come under fire for plans to end Medicare as we know it by turning it into some type of voucher system for Americans under the age of 55, all while slashing taxes for corporations and individuals in the highest tax brackets.

How do you feel about this plan that the GOP has labeled a “Path to Prosperity”?

Monday, May 02, 2011

Sticker Shock at the Pump

How does $ 5.69 for a gallon of regular gasoline strike you? Reportedly, that’s what one gas station in Florida is charging.  Gas prices have reportedly soared above the national average in 22 other states. Have we reached the breaking point?

How high will gas prices have to rise before America gets serious about alternative energy of sources?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Discontent within the Party

Low job approval ratings have plagued President Obama over recent weeks, triggering speculation of a possible Presidential nomination challenge from within the Democratic Party.

What do you think is behind the speculation and how do you feel about a challenge to this sitting President from within his own party?

Monday, April 18, 2011

Stick to the facts

Arizona Senator Jon Kyl recently claimed that 90% of Planned Parenthood’s resources were spent on abortions. The actual number is closer to 3%. He later stated that his remarks were “not intended to be factual.” 

Why do you think Planned Parenthood and abortions are dominating the budget discussions when current law prevents any federal money from being used on abortions?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Won't Let It Go

The birther movement has received rejuvenation from Presidential hopeful Donald Trump.  According to a recent poll, 51% of likely GOP voters believe that President Obama was born in another country and another 21% are not sure.

Why do you think this issue is still drawing traction, long after the Obama campaign released a birth certificate in 2008 indicating he was born in Hawaii?

Monday, April 04, 2011

One for All

Arizona’s flat tax proposal has triggered debate of whether a single tax rate would stimulate economic growth or whether it would hurt the poor and working poor, who now in many cases pay little or no taxes.

How do you feel about a single flat tax rate for all working Americans?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Calling the Shots

President Obama has been criticized by both Democrats and Republicans for his unilateral authorization of engaging U.S. military forces against Libya. Some are calling the President’s decision unconstitutional.

How do you feel about the President’s decision? Should he have consulted with Congress prior to engaging US forces?

Monday, March 21, 2011

U.S. Nuclear Check?

Questions of the safety of nuclear plants have surfaced after the recent crisis in Japan. The US has reportedly set aside $18 billion dollars for new nuclear plants and several facilities have applied to extend their licenses.

How do you feel about nuclear energy and how safe would you feel living near a nuclear plant?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Drawing the Line

Republican Senator John McCain has called for the imposition of a no-fly zone over Libya which would require the bombing of Libyan air defenses. A recent poll has revealed that support for the U.S. having a leading or major role in solving international problems has diminished.

In light of escalating unrest in Libya and throughout the Middle East, should the U.S. get involved militarily in Libya?

Monday, March 07, 2011

The Pie

College basketball junkies are gearing up for March Madness, the NCAA tournament that generates billions of dollars for the NCAA and member schools.

Should student athletes be compensated for their efforts and receive what many perceive as their fair share of the pie?

Monday, February 28, 2011

Take It or Leave It

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s budget measure that would eliminate collective bargaining rights for most public employee unions has outraged the thousands that continue to protest at the statehouse.

Does the Governor’s measure go too far? Could budget concessions be accomplished without the elimination of collective bargaining?

Monday, February 21, 2011

Labels

Leftist, right winger, liberal, conservative, progressive? The list of political labels and their evolving definitions continue to grow with each political season.

How do you define yourself politically and why?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Real Change

Egyptian Protesters crowded the streets by the thousands bound and determined for political change. Mission accomplished, Mubarak’s thirty year reign is over.

What would it take for Americans to organize and demand real political and economic change here in this country?

Monday, February 07, 2011

Perfect Storm in the Middle East?

Key members of the ruling party of Egypt, including President Mubarak’s once heir apparent son have now resigned. Secretary of State Clinton has warned of a perfect storm in the Middle East, if Egypt fails to institute democratic reforms swiftly.

Should Mubarak remain in place during the transition or should he step down immediately?

Monday, January 31, 2011

Chaos!

The call for political reform and the resignation of long time U.S. ally Egyptian President Mubarak by protesters has placed the United States in a difficult and sensitive position in light of the turbulent civil unrest.

How should the U.S. respond to the present state of turmoil in Egypt?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Cooler Heads?

President Obama, in the aftermath of the Tucson massacre, has urged us all to “pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not a way that wounds.”

How do you think the tone of political discourse will be affected by this horrific event?

Monday, January 03, 2011

Ouch!

Get ready, experts have put us on notice that the cost of gas is expected to increase and could reach as high as $5.00 a gallon. Ouch!

How will higher gas prices affect your travel plans this year?

Gas prices heading up from 3 dollars: wwlp.com

Monday, December 20, 2010

Priority One

Unemployment benefits have just been extended to 2 million out of work Americans. With the total number of unemployed at an all time high and the clock ticking on continued extended benefits, jobs should be priority one for America in 2011.

How should we go about the task of creating jobs?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Deal or No Deal!

President Obama’s recent compromise with Republicans that would extend the Bush tax cuts for all Americans in exchange for an extension of the unemployment benefits has resulted in rejection from Democrats. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi indicated that Democrats will fight to alter the proposed plan.

How do you feel about the Tax Cut Deal?

Monday, December 06, 2010

Security Breach

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has outraged the U. S. and foreign leaders again after his recent release of State Department classified documents.

Should the Obama administration pursue prosecution of Assange under an obscure 1917 Espionage Act as suggested by some or should it instead focus its efforts on improving security measures to decrease the possibility of any future breaches? 
 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Unshakable?

The situation on the Korean peninsula has reportedly escalated to the brink of war. President Obama has stated that US support for South Korea is unshakable.

Should the State Department’s pledge of a “measured and unified response” include US military engagement in Korea?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Up Close and Personal

Airline passengers have become increasingly frustrated and in some cases have refused the new full body scans and enhanced pat downs due to privacy and health concerns.

How do you feel about the use of body scanners versus pat downs in airports and do you feel more secure with these procedures in place?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Time is Running Out

Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits are scheduled to expire November 30th, which can provide up to a total of 53 weeks of benefits for qualified individuals.
 
How do you feel about the need for Congress to extend these benefits to the millions of unemployed workers? 

Monday, November 08, 2010

No Shows

Republicans brought home major victories in the 2010 midterm elections. Exit polling revealed low Democratic turnout, especially among young voters that supported the President in 2008.

What do you think was the cause of the low turnout and what message do you think voters are sending to Washington?

Monday, November 01, 2010

Back to Work

The issue of jobs is of great concern, especially to the approximately 15 million unemployed Americans. The ratio of the unemployed seeking work to jobs available is roughly 5 to 1.

What do you think needs to happen to put the vast majority of these Americans back to work?

Monday, October 25, 2010

On the Attack

This year’s negative political ads are often not just misleading but in some cases vicious and personal, now account for 60% of all campaign ads according to watchdog and industry estimates.

How do you feel about this increased use of political attack ads?

Monday, October 18, 2010

Another Screw-up!

Recently the “Too Big to Fail” financial institutions made headlines with questionable foreclosure procedures. While the White House is opposed to a nationwide moratorium on home foreclosures, Attorney Generals in all 50 states have launched an investigation.

What actions do you think should be taken to deal with this foreclosure crisis?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Too Much Government?

Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Paterson are proposing a ban of the purchase of sugary drinks with food stamps in the city of New York in an attempt to fight obesity.

Does this proposal unfairly single out low income residents? Has government gone too far? What do you think?

Monday, October 04, 2010

New management?

Social Security reform has come to the forefront of the midterm elections as some Republicans have expressed support of some sort of privatization. President Obama has vowed to fight any efforts to privatize Social Security.

How do you feel about privatizing Social Security?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Deal Breaker?

President Obama condemned Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s comments alleging that some segments within the US Government played a part in the 9/11 attacks.

What do you think? Should this latest barrage of inflammatory comments affect the U.N. Security Council’s offer to enter into negotiations with Tehran?

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Race is On

Tea Party backed candidates have garnered a lot of attention recently with major primary victories in New York, Delaware, Nevada, Alaska and Kentucky.

How do you think these successes will affect the direction of the Republican Party and upcoming midterm elections?

Monday, September 13, 2010

On the Rise

Religious tensions continue to escalate over the on again, off again threats of Quran burnings associated with the proposed Islamic Center near Ground Zero that have now triggered violent protests worldwide.

What do you think is the root of this resurgence of Islamophobia nine years after the attacks of 9/11?

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Hindsight

President Obama recently declared an end to combat missions in Iraq.

Considering the loss of more than 4400 lives along with approximately $700 billion spent over seven years and the fact that there were no weapons of mass destruction, in hindsight, was the war in Iraq worth the cost?

Monday, August 30, 2010

Tax Cuts

Tensions are mounting between the Democrats and Republicans over the Bush tax cuts 

How do you feel about allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire at the end of the year, and will raising taxes on the rich slow down the economy even more as some have suggested?

Monday, August 23, 2010

What’s Right?

Recent comments by President Obama defending and then somewhat retracting his support of a proposed Islamic Center and Mosque in New York has drawn the ire of critics from both the right and left.

How do you feel about the prolonged controversy surrounding the center?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Shake-up?

Less than three months away from the midterm elections, Former Virginia Governor Doug Wilder has shifted the focus to 2012 by suggesting that President Obama dump Joe Biden in favor of Hillary Clinton?

How do you feel about a VP shake-up in 2012?

Monday, August 09, 2010

Review?

Leading Republicans have called for a review and possible repeal of the 14th amendment in an effort to deny birthright citizenship to children of undocumented immigrants.

How do you feel about proceedings to review the 14th amendment?

Monday, August 02, 2010

Not so Fast!

A day before the Arizona immigration law was scheduled to take effect – a federal judge granted an injunction against some of the most controversial parts of the law.

What do you think? Do you agree with the judge’s decision?
 

Monday, July 26, 2010

No More ...?

Virginia Democratic Senator Webb has called for an end to affirmative action diversity programs suggesting that these programs have marginalized and disadvantaged struggling whites.

How do you feel about the need for continued affirmative action programs in America?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Losing Hope?

According to a recent poll, only 45% of voters approve of the President’s performance. 
 
Do you think President Obama has been effective as a leader and will the midterm elections be a referendum on the President?    

Monday, July 12, 2010

Win or Lose?

RNC Chairman Michael Steele has taken a lot of heat for suggesting that the war in Afghanistan cannot be won.

Do you agree with his contention? How would you define success in Afghanistan?

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Working Longer

House Minority Leader John Boehner recently suggested raising the Social Security retirement age to 70 years old.

What do you think about increasing the Social Security retirement age by five years? 

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Unemployed?

Utah Senator Orrin Hatch recently proposed legislation that would require people receiving unemployment benefits to be tested for drug use.

What do you think?  Should those seeking unemployment benefits be subjected to drug testing?

Monday, June 21, 2010

Bypassing BP?

There has been a lot of discussion surrounding the viability of a boycott of British Petroleum.

How do you feel about a boycott of BP?    

Monday, June 14, 2010

Open Season?

California has joined an increasing number of states that now have some form of open primaries that do not require voters to be affiliated with a political party to vote for partisan candidates.

Do you favor the open primary system or should voters have to declare an affiliation in order to vote in a primary? 

Monday, June 07, 2010

Overall Performance

Recent polls indicate that President Obama’s approval rating has declined in the midst of the BP Gulf oil crisis.

How would you rate the President’s overall job performance?

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Ground Zero

A proposal to build a Mosque and Muslim cultural center near Ground Zero has sparked opposition from a September 11th victims’ group and the Tea Party.

What do you think? Is the opposition justified? 

Monday, May 24, 2010

Who's Handling Things?

The Obama administration has faced a flurry of criticism regarding BP’s handling of the spillage in the Gulf.

Who do you think should be held accountable, BP or the President?   

Monday, May 17, 2010

Deal Breaker?

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan is receiving a mix of criticism and praise from both Republicans and Democrats.  

What do you think? How do you feel about a nominee that lacks judicial experience?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Maybe not?

The Obama administration recently expressed support of a repeal of the moratorium on offshore drilling along the East Coast.

In light of the horrific Gulf Coast oil spill, should we permanently ban the expansion of offshore drilling?

Monday, May 03, 2010

Military presence?

One year removed from consideration for the Olympics, Chicago leaders are divided over suggestions to bring in the National Guard to combat the city’s growing violence.

Should the National Guard be used to fight crime on city streets? 

Monday, April 26, 2010

Firestorm Ignited

The Governor of Arizona signed an immigration reform bill that has sparked much controversy and characterized by the President as being “misguided.”

Do you agree with the Governor’s decision? What do you think about the bill? 

Monday, April 19, 2010

Once or twice?

A recent Gallup Poll revealed that 50% of registered voters feel that President Obama does not deserve re-election.

Based on performance, do you think President Obama deserves a second term?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Game changer?

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell recently acknowledged that the omission of slavery from his proclamation declaring Confederate History Month was a mistake.  

Does his amendment to include slavery give credence to the celebration of the Confederacy?

Monday, April 05, 2010

What's next?

Allegations of sexual abuse and cover up continue to plague the Roman Catholic Church.

Do you think the Church’s response was adequate? If not, what actions should be taken by the Church?

Monday, March 29, 2010

Not just 'No' but ...

Sarah Palin recently proclaimed the Republican Party as the party of “Hell No.”
     
Do you think this strategy of opposition and obstruction will benefit the Republicans in the November elections?

Monday, March 22, 2010

It's Done!

Health care reform has been a long and drawn out process. 

What do you think of the outcome? What will it mean for the President and the country? 

Monday, March 15, 2010

ID Please?

Discussions in Washington concerning immigration reform have sparked controversy on the proposal of a national worker ID card.  

What do you think about a mandate that would require all American workers to have a biometric identification card
 

Monday, March 08, 2010

Credit screening

In today’s record unemployment, finding a job is no easy feat. Several states may ease the process with a ban against credit checks on job applicants. 
Should a job seeker’s credit history or credit score be used to determine their eligibility for hire?    

Monday, March 01, 2010

Hand Check

In addition to body scanners, TSA screeners will be allowed to randomly swab airport passengers’ hands for detection of explosives.

Do you think this procedure can be implemented without discrimination or profiling?

Monday, February 22, 2010

Prison population

Questions are being raised on whether the census should include those that are incarcerated

Should inmates be counted in the census? If counted, should the census register them under their prison address or their home community? 

Monday, February 15, 2010

Lemons to lemonade?

Toyota, the world’s largest automaker is facing multiple lawsuits due to massive recalls for acceleration and braking problems.

What will Toyota have to do to regain consumer confidence?

Monday, February 08, 2010

Which venue?

There is mounting opposition to Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to try the 9/11 terror suspects in civilian court opposed to a military tribunal.

Should the trial of the 9/11 terror suspects be held in a civilian court or in a military tribunal?

Monday, February 01, 2010

End the gridlock!

Partisan politics and bickering have nearly brought Capitol Hill to a screeching halt.

What needs to happen to get Democrats and Republicans to govern in a bipartisan manner?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Raising the pay

The question of providing merit pay and added incentives for effective classroom teachers has many lawmakers and teacher unions on opposing ends. 

Do you think performance based incentives for teachers will improve student achievement?  

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Take action!

We just celebrated the birthday of Dr. King and it's obvious that we have a long way to go in race relations, with racially insensitive comments coming from both the right and left.
 
What actions do you think should be taken in an effort to improve race relations and unite our country?

Monday, January 11, 2010

Negro dialect???

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stated during the 2008 presidential campaign that Barack Obama could win because of his “light-skinned” appearance and speaking “with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one,” according to sources

How do you feel about this comment and what exactly is a Negro dialect?

Monday, January 04, 2010

Matrimony

New Hampshire became the fifth state in the U.S. to allow same sex marriage with the District of Columbia expected to be next.

Do you believe marriage is a civil right for gays and lesbians?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Pat down

Federal officials imposed new restrictions and heightened screenings that will likely lengthen lines at airports and change the routine of air travel after the recent failed terror attack on a US airliner.

Will these changes affect your plans and willingness to fly aboard US commercial airlines?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Report Card

During an interview, President Obama gave himself “a good solid B- plus” for his first year in office.

Do you agree? How would you grade the President?  

Monday, December 14, 2009

Homegrown

Five college age students from Northern Virginia were arrested last week in Pakistan, suspected of seeking training in jihad from an al-Qaeda linked terrorist group.

Do you think the threat of homegrown terrorism is on the rise in the United States?

Monday, December 07, 2009

How long?

President Obama has announced his decision to deploy 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan.

Should we be sending more troops? Is the President’s timetable for withdrawal of troops by 2011 realistic?  

Monday, November 30, 2009

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner

A Virginia couple crashed the first State Dinner of the Obama administration and actually shook hands and took pictures with the President. 

Should the failure to follow basic security procedures by the Secret Service cause us to question our homeland security as a whole?

 

Monday, November 23, 2009

Teaching or Preaching?

A county in central Virginia plans to offer high school students an elective class on the Bible next year. The issue has sparked controversy on both sides of the matter. The question has been raised whether the course can be taught free of religious indoctrination and bias.   
 
Should the Bible be taught in public schools? What do you think?

Monday, November 16, 2009

What's your take?

The Fort Hood shootings were a horrible tragedy. Although it remains unclear how this could have happened, there is growing speculation that the incident was a terrorist attack.

Do you think the incident was an act of terrorism or the act of a deranged gunman? 
 

Monday, November 09, 2009

Read between the lines

Gubernatorial elections were held last week in NJ and VA along with a congressional race in New York. Both parties declared victory even in the midst of significant losses.

What message do you think was being sent to both the Republican and Democratic Parties?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Possible or impossible?

A recent Gallup poll reveals that only 56% of Americans believe that a solution to America’s race problems will be worked out, roughly the same as reported in 1964.

Do you think race relations will always be an issue in the United States and why?

Monday, October 26, 2009

Outfoxed?

Reportedly, after months of taking incoming fire from Fox News, the White House fired back with negative criticism.

Do you think the White House crossed the line?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Irreversible injustice

There is growing support calling for a moratorium on executions in the state of Texas, sparked by recent reports that an innocent man may have been executed.    

What do you think about a moratorium on the death penalty?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Packing and drinking?

The State of Arizona recently passed a law that allows taking a concealed weapon into a bar, providing it’s not prohibited by the establishment.   

Would you patronize a bar that allows guns?

Monday, October 05, 2009

Roll up your sleeve or else...

In the state of New York there is a mandate for all health care workers to take the H1N1 flu vaccine. There are other states considering the same requirement.   

How would you react if your employer mandated that you to take the flu vaccine? 

Monday, September 28, 2009

It's not that serious or is it?

Recently at the G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh, protesters were reportedly dispersed by officers using pepper spray and sonic weapons known to be used in US military operations. 

Should local law enforcement be allowed to use military weaponry against protesters?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Is it too much to ask?

Rep. Joe Wilson refuses to render an apology on the House floor for his comment during the President’s address to Congress last week.

What action do you think should be taken for not publicly apologizing to Congress?

Monday, August 31, 2009

In the aftermath of the tragedy

The CEO of Richmond Virginia’s SPCA accidentally left her dog in a hot car, where the dog later died after several hours. Emotions are mixed with some feeling that the CEO should resign.

What action, if any, do you think should be taken?    

Monday, August 24, 2009

Political firepower

During several of the Town Hall meetings for health care reform, those wishing to exercise their Second Amendment right to bear arms have been in attendance with handguns and  assault rifles.

 
While no incidents were reported, does possession of weapons in this type of setting post a potential threat?          
 

Monday, August 17, 2009

Death Ruling?

An Australian court ruled that a 49-year old quadriplegic should not be administered food and water against his wishes. The patient is fed though a tube in his stomach. The ruling set a legal precedent in Australia.  
Should a patient be given the legal choice to administer their own treatment even if it includes death?     

Monday, August 10, 2009

Report Card

President Obama has been in office for 200 days. Based on the country’s present global and economic conditions, how would you rate his performance?

Monday, August 03, 2009

Have you been victimized?

A 2004 Gallup Poll revealed that 67% of  African Americans and 63% of Hispanic Americans feel racial profiling is widespread in traffic stops compared to 50% of White Americans.  

Have you ever been a victim of racial profiling? Share your experiences here with the Tanya Free community.

 

Monday, July 27, 2009

Kidneys for sale?

Last week the FBI busted an organ trafficking ring; an alleged 10 year scheme involved in the buying and selling of kidneys for transplants. While it is illegal under federal law for anyone to buy or sell organs for transplant, there is support to change the law to permit a system of regulated compensation for donor kidneys. What do you think?

Should a person be allowed to buy or sell their organs for a transplant? 

Monday, July 20, 2009

What to wear?

First the students, now there is a growing trend requiring teachers to abide by a dress code.  

Should teachers be required to adhere to a dress code?

Monday, July 13, 2009

It's extra

Airlines are doing it - now ambulance providers.  A provider in Kansas is charging more for its services to patients that are overweight. 

Should companies be allowed to charge extra because of weight?         
 

Monday, July 06, 2009

Calling it Quits

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin announced her resignation. The eighteen month early departure has sparked much speculation and many questions.

What do you think about Governor Palin’s decision to step down from office?    

Monday, June 29, 2009

Health Care - Under Construction

Health care reform is a complex issue that has the current administration seeking support to make it happen. While many agree that reform is necessary, there is much disagreement on how to revamp the system.

How would you design the health care system to make it fair to everyone?     

Monday, June 22, 2009

U.S. involvement?

The civil unrest in Iran has been in the media since the country’s recent presidential election.  President Obama has refrained from taking a stance with either side despite the fact some US congressional leaders would like the President to lend support to the Iranian protesters.

Should the President intervene in support of the protesters?
 

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Letterman in the hot seat ?

Late night host David Letterman made controversial jokes about Sarah Palin and a member of her family. Palin found the jokes to be offensive and inappropriate. Letterman later apologized, but protesters are calling for Letterman to be fired.  What do you think?

Should Letterman be given a pink slip?

Monday, June 08, 2009

Racist or Realist ?

Supreme Court Nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor has been quoted as saying “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would, more often than not, reach a better conclusion,” and added "than a white male who hasn't lived that life." This comment has sparked accusations of racism from critics.

 Do you find this comment to be racist?

Monday, June 01, 2009

Same Sex Marriage?

Last week, the California Supreme Court upheld Prop 8 that bans same sex marriages.The ruling comes on the heels of several states that recently allowed same sex marriages. The controversial issue is being challenged on a state by state basis. What do you think?

Should same sex couples have the right to get married?           


   
 

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Court override

A 13-year old cancer patient and his parents elected to discontinue conventional medical care and opted for holistic treatment until a court order intervened.

Should a court be allowed to override a parent’s plan of care for their child?
 

Monday, May 18, 2009

Worthy of Honor?

President Obama delivered the commencement address at Arizona State University followed by him giving one at Notre Dame. The President received an honorary degree from Notre Dame but his achievement failed to merit an honorary degree from Arizona State University. 

Should Arizona State University have honored the President with a meritorious degree?  

Monday, May 11, 2009

Pay to stay?

New York has resurrected a twelve year old law that allows public homeless shelters to charge those staying at the shelter a portion of their income.

Do you think a person should have to pay to stay at a shelter?

Monday, May 04, 2009

Legislative Reform

A legislative hearing was held recently to address the reform of the current federal cocaine sentencing structure that fails to appropriately reflect the differences and  similarites between crack and powder cocaine. Reports indicate that it takes 100 times more powder cocaine to cause the same harsh mandatory minimum sentence as crack cocaine.

Do you think the law should be reformed?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Is It The End?

The American auto industry is on the verge of collapse. GM announced it will no longer manufacture its Pontiac brand.Do you think this is the beginning of the demise of the American automobile industry?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Question of the Week

President Obama has been in office for three months. Has he kept his campaign promises? How do you think the President is doing so far?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Question of the Week

Purchasing a gun, depending on the state, can be as easy as buying a cup of coffee. Should there be universal requirements such as background checks, psychological testing or a waiting period prior to purchase?

Monday, April 06, 2009

Question of the Week

President Obama requested support from NATO allies for the U.S. led war in Afghanistan during the recent G20 summit in London. European leaders offered limited aid for civilians and training for Afghan police and soldiers but would not commit to significant combat troops.     

Should the U.S. commit more troops for combat in Afghanistan?

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Question

Should marijuana be decriminalized?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Who keep's the money?

After public outrage over the $165 million in AIG bonuses, CEO Edward Liddy asked bonus recipients to return at least half of what they received. Voluntarily, some actually agreed to return 100 percent of the money. During an investigation, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo reports 9 of the top 10 bonus recipients returned the money – a recovery of about $50 million. A drop in the bucket considering $115 million remains outstanding.     

Should AIG request the bonuses be returned? Would you return the money?

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Fix it!

AIG awarding $165 million in bonuses has ignited public outrage. How can the failing Wall Street giant - AIG and others like Citigroup and Bank of America award bonuses and other perks, and continuously, at the expense of the American taxpayers?

The President accepts responsibility stating "the buck stops with [him]." And in essence, it's his job to fix it.

What should the President do to fix it?  

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Stimulation

During a joint address to Congress a few weeks ago, the President announced that "...95 percent of working households in America will receive a tax cut, a tax cut that you will see in your paychecks beginning on April 1." Good news for 95 percent of us and hopefully good for the economy.

How do you plan to stimulate the economy with your cut?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Joint session

On Tuesday, the President gave a joint session address to members of Congress speaking on a host of issues - jobs,tax relief, the financial system, healthcare reform and education to name a few. After the President's speech, Republican Governor Bobby Jindal, of Louisiana, gave the GOP response,keeping with party principles. Assessment by the media and pundits are in, but what the American people think is what really counts.

So, good or bad what do you think of the President's speech and that of the GOP's response?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

What is this about?

A cartoon that appeared in the Wednesday February 18th edition of theNew York Post has sparked a lot of controversy. The caption makes reference to a stimulus bill with a caricature of violent imagery along with questionable racial undertones. Civil rights groups have called for an apology and are planning a protest.

Do you think the cartoon is inappropriate?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Here he goes - again!

Brett Favre announced Wednesday, yes-you guessed it, his retirement. A call or play, depending on how you look at it, the quarterback made eleven months ago that led to a long and drawn out Brett Favre saga.

Will Favre really retire this time or will the saga continue? 

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Limits

Wednesday, President Obama placed a $500,000 salary limit for corporate executives of companies that receive government bailout funds. On average, the executive's compensation range well in the millions.

Do you think the $500,000 cap is to low, or too high?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The First Daughters

The maker of the Beanie Babies is promoting two dolls with name likeness of the First Daughters Malia and Sasha. The company denies the dolls are modeled after the First Family's two daughters though the dolls bear the names Marvelous Malia and Sweet Sasha. A spokesperson for Mrs. Obama stated "it is inappropriate to use young private citizens for marketing purposes."

Do you think the company crossed the line? 

Thursday, January 22, 2009

To Be or Not ...?

Timothy Geithner, President Obama's pick for Treasury Secretary, appeared before the Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday. Geithner faced questions regarding his failure to pay $34,000 in self-employment taxes between 2001 and 2004. Geithner apologized for what he called "careless, avoidable and unintentional errors." 

Do you think Geithner should be confirmed as Treasury Secretary, which includes oversight of the IRS?   

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Farewell!

President Bush gave his final press conference on Monday - summing up the last eight years of his presidency.  For a president who seldom held press conferences and interviews, he is suddenly all over the TV.  Larry King on Tuesday night and a farewell address to the nation at 8pm tonight on network TV. 

Will you be watching? Whether you do or not, what do you think the President should say to the American people?  

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Salary Rollback

Having a job in this troubled economy is a blessing. Across the country, companies are struggling to stay afloat. In Fayette County, Georgia there is a prosposal to cut salaries in exchange for additional time off.

How much of a pay cut would you be willing to accept in order to keep your job?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Comeback?

Former NFL quarterback Michael Vick, who is currently serving a 23 month prison sentence for his role in a dog fighting operation, could be moved to a halfway house in January.  He is scheduled to be released from federal custody by the summer of 2009.

Should the once football star be given a second chance to play in the NFL?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Question of the Week

The Twilight Zone!

On Tuesday the Governor of Illinois,Rod Blagojevich,was arrested for federal corruption charges. Charges that allleged the Governor attempted to sell the President elect's former Senate seat. The scandal, according to U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald "...has taken us to a new low" one that "...would make Lincoln roll over in his grave."  Without skipping a beat, the Governor returned to work with full governing authority with the power to name a replacement or appoint himself to the vacant Senate seat if he desires. 

Are we in the Twilight Zone- where corruption in our government is rampant and it is business as usual? 

Friday, December 05, 2008

Recession or Depression ?

The uncertainty of our economy is officially being labeled a recession and has been since last year.The current condition of our financial institutions,auto industry  and hundreds of layoffs each week,compared to economic conditions last year are far more devastating.

Are we on the brink of a Depression?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Hillary?

There is a lot of media buzz about President Elect Barack Obama's cabinet selections, which includes many familiar faces that served in President Clinton's administration. Somewhat of a fresh pick, Senator Hillary Clinton is being considered for Secretary of State and is receiving a lot of media attention. Although it appears the hatchet has been buried between the two,everyone is not convinced.

What do you think about Hillary being selected for Secretary of State?

Friday, November 07, 2008

Celebrate America!

America has spoken and the next president of the United States - President Elect Barack Obama. Congratulations America, for turning the page and making history that unites us as one people. And,together we stand with President Elect Barack Obama to restore opportunity and prosperity in America for all Americans.

How Do You Feel About It? 

Monday, November 03, 2008

Is it 2008 or 1958?

Friday, October 24, 2008

"Say it ain't so,John!"

Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin appeared out of nowhere and onto the national scene, drawing larger crowds than running mate John McCain. After several interviews and her apparent inability to clearly define the duties of the vice president on at least four different occasions, it is crystal clear to me that Sarah Palin does not possess the skills,qualifications or experience necessary to be second or first in command if the circumstance arises. In my opinion, this is a direct reflection of John McCain's judgment and what we could expect if he is elected.

What was John McCain thinking? Was he simply picking a female for the "wow factor" or was it designed to appeal to the Hillary faithful,or to recruit the bubba vote?  

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pick one!

After three debates and less then 19 days before one of the most critical elections ever, there are still many undecided voters.

Why are there so many undecided voters? 

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Cheap and despicable!

 The presidential election has gotten very ugly, adding to the already high tensions over our failing economy and financial crisis. 

What does it say about a candidate that engages in such cheap despicable attacks? 

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Are You Ready for Change?

Check out  this week's Tanya's Tips at the left entitled CHANGE !

Friday, October 03, 2008

Who's ready?

Many tuned in for the presidential and vice presidential debates.

 

Which presidential candidate is ready to fix the mess our country is in, if elected?

Friday, September 19, 2008

Plan or Ban?

The President outlined a plan to bail out Wall Street from all of its financial bad debt.  

                    

Should the government be in the business of bailing out Wall Street with our taxpayer dollars?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Reactive vs. Proactive!

Sarah Palin’s pregnant teenage daughter has sparked discussion about the teen pregnancy epidemic.

 

Which approach is most effective in addressing the issue, sex education curriculums or abstinence programs?    

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Who's the real deal?

 

Now that the Democratic and Republican conventions are over and each of the presidential candidates has had an opportunity to speak to the American people - the question which candidate addressed the real issues that the American people really care about and which candidate as president will make those issues a top priority in January 2009?

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Undecided Voters!

We have watched the historic democratic convention and this week John McCain, Sarah Palin and the republicans get their turn. Each party expects a double digit bump in the polls wooing the undecided.

 

 Undecided voters, what do you need to hear to make a decision?

 

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Joe Biden(Click here to comment)

This past Saturday, Senator Obama chose Senator Joe Biden to be his running mate. There are mixed views on whether the choice is a plus.

 

What do you think?    

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

College drinking age (Click here to comment)

Controversy is brewing around lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18. One side thinks the current law encourages binge drinking and the other side feels it will increase the number of driving fatalities.

 

What do you think?     

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

John Edwards (Click to here to comment)

Do you believe John Edwards has a future in politics?