The University of Memphis (UofM) Benjamin L. Hooks Institute recently hosted a lecture on the importance of critical race theory. The speakers maintained that critical race theory was a vital, necessary part of all levels of education because it offers the true history and understanding of this country.
The virtual discussion streamed June 22 with panelists Dr. Kami Anderson, a communications professor; Dr. Wallis Baxter III, a pastor and professor of African American literature at Gettysburg College; Dr. Le’Trice Donaldson, University of Wisconsin-Stout assistant history professor in applied social sciences; and Daniel Kiel, a constitutional, education, and civil rights and property law professor at Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law.
Last Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer filed cloture on the nomination of Julie Su, California’s top labor official, to become President Joe Biden’s deputy secretary of labor.
Su’s confirmation vote will likely occur soon after the Independence Day Senate recess. That’s bad news.
After all, Su leads California’s Labor and Workforce Development Agency, presiding over one of the most anti-small business regimes in the country. If confirmed as second-in-command at the Department of Labor, she would use her position to expand California’s war on small businesses nationwide. On behalf of their small business constituents, Senators must oppose Su’s confirmation.
Progressive firebrand and Democratic lawmaker, Representative Cori Bush (D-MO-01) tweeted on Sunday that the only people who should celebrate Independence Day are “white people.”
“When they say that the 4th of July is about American freedom, remember this: the freedom they’re referring to is for white people. This land is stolen land and Black people still aren’t free,” her full tweet read.
Tech giant Amazon recently demanded that the chairwoman of the Federal Trade Commission be recused from any antitrust investigations into the company, according to the Daily Caller.
Amazon filed the petition with the FTC on Wednesday, accusing Chairwoman Lina Khan of being biased due to the fact that she “has, on numerous occasions, argued that Amazon is guilty of antitrust violations and should be broken up.” The petition continued by declaring that “these statements convey to any reasonable observer the clear impression that she has already made up her mind about many material facts relevant to Amazon’s antitrust culpability as well as about the ultimate issue of culpability itself.”
The FTC is already conducting several antitrust investigations, including against Amazon; their most recent efforts are focusing on Amazon’s possible acquisition of the film studio Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM), a purchase of nearly $9 billion announced last month.
A total of 130 nations representing more than 90 percent of global GDP have agreed to a global minimum corporate tax, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announced Thursday.
The tax, proposed by Yellen and the Biden administration during the G7 conference, would establish a minimum corporate tax rate across all participating countries to prevent corporations from avoiding taxes by incorporating offshore, according to Barron’s. The plan is also intended to prevent countries from competitively lowering their tax rates to attract investment, according to a Treasury Department statement.
“For decades, the United States has participated in a self-defeating international tax competition, lowering our corporate tax rates only to watch other nations lower theirs in response,” Yellen said in the statement.
An interdisciplinary center at the University of Memphis (UofM) that lectured on the importance of critical race theory received a $40,000 donation last Thursday.
The donor, Truist Financial Corporation, gave the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change grant money to further their Hooks African American Male Initiative (HAAMI). Within the initiative, the money will go toward advancing the Hooks Institute Career-Readiness Success Initiative, which offers workforce development and financial literacy. The grant will also assist the institute’s women’s enrichment pilot program called A Seat at the Table (ASATT).
Months after its initial requests, a congressional committee investigating COVID-19’s origins is still awaiting answers from a U.S.-funded group that worked with a Wuhan lab considered a possible origin of COVID-19.
Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee requested EcoHealth Alliance President Peter Daszak answer questions about his group’s work with the Wuhan lab in a letter on April 16, and have still received no response, a committee aide confirmed Thursday.
Only the chair of the committee, Democrat Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr., of New Jersey, can use subpoena power to require a witness’ attendance, testimony and related documents.
The majority of all U.S. counties have been designated as Second Amendment sanctuaries, according to an analysis by SanctuaryCounties.com.
As of June 20, there are 1,930 counties “protected by Second Amendment Sanctuary legislation at either the state or county level,” representing 61% of 3,141 counties and county equivalents in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Texas was the 21st state to pass a constitutional carry bill, which Gov. Greg Abbott signed into law, and becomes effective Sept. 1. And while some state legislatures are not taking the same action, county officials have chosen to enact their own legislation. Roughly 1,137 counties “have taken it upon themselves to pass Second Amendment Sanctuary legislation and likely hundreds of cities, townships, boroughs, etc. have done so at their level as well,” the site states.
Members of the left-leaning Brookings Institution said in an article late last week that local policymakers in Nashville should restore North Nashville’s black middle class — by pursuing a reparations policy. According to its website, the Brookings Institution is a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit.
Ride-share companies like Uber and Lyft have been using incentives to make the gig economy more attractive in an attempt to recruit drivers as a shortage of drivers pushes prices up, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Incentives for drivers to return are an attempt to rectify rising fare prices and a lack of drivers in the market, but the labor scarcity isn’t supposed to end soon, the WSJ reported. Long term solutions might be needed in the gig-economy as a result.
“This is a moment of deep introspection and reflection for a company like ours to pause and say, ‘How do we make the proposition for drivers more attractive longer term?” Carrol Chang, Uber’s chief of driver operations for the U.S. and Canada told the WSJ. “It is absolutely a reckoning.”
Border officials seized 4,000% more fentanyl in 2021 than in 2018 as the border crisis continues, NBC News reported Tuesday.
Cartels have taken advantage of increased federal resources allocated for migrant encounters to smuggle fentanyl into the U.S. between ports of entry, according to NBC News. Border officials have found 41 pounds of fentanyl in fiscal year 2021, compared with nine pounds in 2020, two pounds in 2019 and one pound in 2018.
“For the first time, we’re starting to see these tactics where fentanyl is being smuggled between ports of entry,” Chief Border Patrol Agent Gloria Chavez said, NBC News reported. “Cartels are very creative. They find ways to intimidate migrants and find ways to illegally have them transport that narcotic into the United States.”
America’s first black billionaire proposed $14 trillion in reparations from the U.S. government, which he says is enough to close to black-white wealth gap, VICE reported.
Robert L. Johnson, the founder of Black Entertainment Television, owns several homes, leads an asset management firm and is the first black person to own a majority stake in an NBA team, but wants cash reparations himself, VICE reported. Along with the check Johnson wants an apology for racism, including slavery and Jim Crow laws, he told VICE in an interview.
He believes the new reparations are Critical Race Theory (CRT) in education, COVID-19 relief solely for black farmers, local reparations for housing in Evanston, Illinois and pledges from corporations the past year, following the death of George Floyd in May 2020.
As the pandemic recedes and Americans re-enter public life, the surgeon general and other public health experts are urging the country to focus on another national crisis, one that has lingered for decades and worsened in recent years: loneliness.
For many, pandemic-related lockdowns, social distancing, and physical isolation resulted in their most severe experiences of loneliness. Studies have shown that an uptick in loneliness and other mental health issues coincided with the pandemic, and that lockdown requirements almost certainly exacerbated pre-existing mental conditions. But for researchers who have studied loneliness, the recent increase is only one notable event in an extensive history.
Loneliness is not just a crisis in America, but also in Europe, Canada, Japan, China, Australia and, increasingly, South America and Africa. Loneliness also occurs regardless of race, class, culture, and religion. Even before the lockdowns, tens of millions of people throughout the world felt isolated.
SCOTTSDALE, Arizona – A gubernatorial rally in Scottsdale for Kari Lake Monday night featured a long list of celebrities leading up to the former newscaster, who all spoke along her theme of “stand for freedom.” Lake’s plain-talking style had the audience standing and cheering as she declared, “We’re going to finish the wall!”
She hammered California, vowing to never let Arizona become a “California 2.0.” She said California “is the leftists’ dream.” “California was once heaven and now it’s hell.” She declared, “Keep that California crap away from me!” to roaring applause. Lake lamented how the Democrats’ “dead-end policies have brought blue states to their knees.” She warned that “the left wants to rip us to shreds.”
With the election of Joe Biden, there is increasing pressure for the United States to accommodate the global ambitions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Such a policy will weaken the strategic position of the United States and embolden the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which seeks to transform the rules of international politics, and has demonstrated its willingness to employ coercive measures, including threats and open conflict, to achieve its aims.
As it has done for decades, and does so now with the Biden Administration, the CCP makes appeals for accommodation while emphasizing the need to turn away from more confrontational policies, like those most recently advanced by the Trump Administration. And as always, China’s words must be seen as tactical measures it deploys in pursuit of its objectives. Thus, it is only a matter of time before attempts to cooperate with China fail. However tempting, accommodation will not succeed for the stark reason that China does not want it.
Party Chairman Xi Jinping has made clear that what China seeks is world hegemony. And it is upon the pursuit of this hegemony that his power in the regime depends.
Skill games in Virginia remain closed as two lawsuits fighting to allow the slot-like electronic games despite a recent law banning them. On Friday, Norfolk Circuit Court Judge Junius Fulton III denied a request for an emergency injunction in one of the lawsuits that would have temporarily allowed the games to reopen while the lawsuit proceeds, according to Courthouse News.
In rural southwest Virginia, the number of police officers quitting their jobs is turning heads.
“In total, Roanoke County saw 28 of its police officers leave during 2020, about one-fifth of its department,” The Roanoke Times reported. “That is both abnormal and normal all at once — abnormal because it’s twice as high as the turnover the agency would expect in a typical year. Normal because it tracks with a surge in police departures unfolding nationwide.”
The city of Minneapolis has agreed to a contract with a mental health group that has only existed for one year, according to screenshots obtained from city websites. This group, Canopy Mental Health & Consulting, will be assisting with the city’s plan to replace and restructure the police. They are contracted to pay the group $6 million to provide 24/7 mental health services in “crisis response teams” for the next two years. According to WCCO, there is an option to extend the services for a third year if the cost does not exceed $3 million.
A former Florida Senator and Democrat, José Javier Rodriguez, was nominated by President Joe Biden for Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Administration (ETA) for the U.S. Department of Labor.
Rodriquez served as a member of the Florida House of Representatives from 2012 to 2016, and served on the Florida Senate from 2016 to 2020, representing Districts 112 and 37 respectively.
Two Florida state lawmakers predicted that the multi-story building that collapsed in Surfside, Florida may lead to regulation changes at the state level.
The legislators, who represent coastal cities in the state, both said that they want to wait for the results of the investigation into the cause of the collapse that turned the condominiums into rubble.
U.S. Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA-08) said COVID-19 exposed serious weaknesses in the nation’s food-supply chain, and those weaknesses continue to stress farmers. Long-term challenges, Scott said, may still await. And those challenges may eventually affect consumers — for the worse.
Arizona State University (ASU) debuted a new undergraduate degree geared toward social justice activism, called community development. The course description describes education on the basics of activism, citing concepts like diversity, inclusivity, sustainability, equity, and social and environmental justice. If students enjoy studying community development, they may also earn a graduate degree in it.
“The BA program in community development equips students with tools to collaborate with, empower and educate diverse community constituents by drawing on grassroots and inclusive frameworks such as sustainable development, social and environmental justice, participatory democracy, social and economic equity and social accounting,” reads the course description.
A provision Ohio’s latest budget bill, which was recently passed, gives doctors the right to refuse service to potential patients on religious and moral grounds.
“This simply puts in statute what the practice has been anyways,” Gov. Mike DeWine (R) reportedly said. “Let’s say the doctor is against abortion, the doctor is not doing abortion. If there’s other things that maybe a doctor has a conscience problem with, it gets worked out, somebody else does those things.”
Chesapeake Circuit Court Judge John Brown dismissed a petition to recall Senator Louise Lucas (D-Portsmouth) on Friday. Conservatives in her district had obtained about 8,000 signatures to remove Lucas, alleging misuse of office, but the court sided with Lucas’ legal team who argued that Virginia senators can only be recalled by a two-thirds vote in the Senate. Separate provisions in the Code of Virginia and the Virginia Constitution detail processes for removing elected officials, but the Lucas team argued that only the constitutional provision applies to state legislators, and that therefore the court did not have jurisdiction, according to The Virginian-Pilot.
Several large law enforcement coalitions are suing the state after changes were made to Minnesota’s deadly force laws. The organizations based the lawsuit on the idea that the changes “violates officers’ rights to self-defense and unconstitutionally compels officers to forfeit their rights to refuse to testify against themselves in deadly force cases.”
Tropical Storm Elsa is expected to make landfall in Cuba and part of the Florida Keys before heading to mainland Florida. The storm will be bringing approximately 60 mile-per-hour winds and will drop five to ten inches of rain in Cuba.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued a state of emergency for 15 Florida counties, with nine million Floridians being under tropical storm watches and warnings.
The Supreme Court recently decided in favor of a Fillmore County Amish community after the county attempted to force the Amish to violate their religious beliefs by installing a septic system, after a lower court had previously ruled in favor of the county and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.
According to the Court’s decision, written by Justice Neil Gorsuch, the county engaged in bullying tactics in an attempt to get the Swartzentruber Amish community to agree to its terms. Those tactics included “threats of reprisals and inspections of their homes and farms” and attacks on “the sincerity of the Amish’s faith.”
Former Michigan Supreme Court Justice Stephen Markman urged Michigan’s independent redistricting committee to use geographical boundaries instead of racial, ethnic, or religious groups to determine the state’s new voting boundaries.
Markman took to the Wall Street Journal opinion page June 25 to air his concerns.
Markman, who retired from the Michigan Supreme Court in 2020, supports drawing boundaries via neighborhoods, instead of “communities of interest,” such as shared concerns for which a University of Michigan report advocated.
A federal jury convicted an Albany, Georgia resident with a lengthy criminal history on various gun and drug charges late last week. This, according to a press release that officials with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Georgia published on their website.
Nashville Mayor John Cooper announced last week that $150,000 would be going to nonprofits that offered violence reduction strategies. A nonprofit could receive up to $5,000 for their work; the Community Safety Partnership (CSP) Advisory Board will issue recommendations for who receives the grant awards throughout this month and August.
In a press release, Cooper asserted that this would allow communities to achieve safety solutions tailored to their local needs, particularly for gun violence.