Progressive Voices

Progressive Voices

Progressive Voices Top Story

Tax cuts doing nothing to rouse NC’s sluggish economy

As most everyone who knows the North Carolina legislature will tell you, regardless of their political allegiances, the coffee there is terrible. A cup of the bitter and watery stuff is more apt to produce irritability than alertness, a fact that becomes increasingly evident as a legislative session drags on. Inadequate caffeine may be behind some of the head-scratching policy coming out of Raleigh in the last few years...

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Progressive Voices Top Story

Local conservative group wildly over-inflates actual costs of NCAE’s policy priorities

Last week, the John Locke Foundation attempted to tar the NCAE’s 2019 policy priorities by claiming they would cost $6 billion. The analysis, such as it is, betrays a fundamental misunderstanding of some of the biggest issues faced by North Carolina policymakers. A more accurate estimate would put the NCAE’s policy priorities at about $1.2 billion per year.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

House budget proposes even less transparency for NC’s already unaccountable school voucher program

Since its inception, North Carolina’s school voucher program has suffered from a stunning lack of transparency and accountability that should safeguard the public’s investment in private schools. The voucher program already makes public dollars accessible to private schools that are free to discriminate by turning away students who are gay or transgender, have disabilities, or who don’t subscribe to a religious doctrine.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

Did Jesus charge the poor a premium to be healed?

The North Carolina General Assembly continues to wage a war against the poor and vulnerable in our state, further fanning the flames of health care inequality. The fuel of this inferno, however, is real people’s lives. It’s time for the North Carolina General Assembly to put out the flames of poverty, sickness and death.

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Key demands of education marchers could soon find their way into state court

Recommendations of court-appointed expert in Leandro case expected to echo, amplify educators' agenda If the May 1 action in support for public schools doesn’t convince North Carolina administrators and policymakers to change course on our education policies, maybe the report from the court-appointed expert in the now 25-year old Leandro litigation—due at the end of May— will.

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Superintendent Johnson uses new website to gaslight educators

Under North Carolina’s Standard Course of Study, 6th graders are expected to understand the difference between the average and median of a distribution of numbers. So the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Mark Johnson, is certainly aware that you should never compare the median of one data set to the average of another data set.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

Why teachers care about Medicaid expansion

There is a reasonable question being asked about the inclusion of Medicaid expansion in NCAE’s legislative priorities for the May 1st Day of Action. If kids are already covered, why do teachers want to expand coverage for NC families? The answer is simple - working with kids every day, we naturally see the link between the overall health and well-being of the family and how well a child will grow in the classroom.

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While U.S. states push to criminalize abortion, other countries are liberalizing laws

Abortion is not a crime, yet the North Carolina General Assembly just came a step closer to making it one with the recent controversial abortion bill that Gov. Cooper rightly vetoed. Let’s be real: the bill was an outrageous attempt to criminalize the doctors and nurses who provide abortion care and erect a huge barrier for people seeking it.

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Proposals to close the health insurance coverage gap should follow the data on what actually works

North Carolina’s dubious ranking of having the 10th highest rate of uninsured people in the nation continues to play out across the state in ways that challenge our collective well-being and community stability, even as it leads to worse health outcomes and diminished livelihoods for hundreds of thousands of our neighbors.

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Flawed classroom supplies legislation is based on lawmaker’s false premise

Last Wednesday, Superintendent Mark Johnson was joined by important members of the House and Senate for what they promised would be “a major announcement regarding education in North Carolina.” While the hype for the announcement was major, the announcement itself was a dud. The “major announcement” was a plan to divert funding for classroom supplies from school districts to an app that would give every teacher $400 to spend on classroom supplies.

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Hidden history: How NC’s education system overlooks harsh realities of Natives past and present

In February, a stare-down between a Native American man beating a drum and a white teenager in a MAGA hat caused a national stir outside the Lincoln Memorial. Three years ago, President Trump began calling Sen. Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas.”

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The United Methodist Church just made life worse for queer people like me, but I’m not leaving

Last week, members of the United Methodist Church held a polarizing vote to toughen their rules on same-sex marriage and LGBTQ clergy, a decision that seems likely to split the church, which counts hundreds of thousands of members in North Carolina.

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Why our organization supports UNC’s race-conscious admission policies

In 2014, Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) filed federal lawsuits against Harvard and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), alleging that both institutions’ admissions practices are discriminatory. The widely publicized Harvard case hinged on the question of whether Harvard’s admission policy discriminates against Asian American students by holding them to a higher standard than other applicants.

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Gerrymandering dooms voter ID amendment, judge says

Perhaps we didn’t see this coming. Perhaps we should have. In what has to rate among the most explosive state court rulings in recent years, a judge on Feb. 22 tossed out two hotly contested amendments to the North Carolina constitution, including one that would make it harder for many citizens to vote.

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Not fixed yet: Trump administration family separation policies continue to harm innocent children

News media attention may have shifted of late to the government shutdown, the Michael Cohen circus and other Trump Administration misadventures, but the crisis of immigrant children being forcibly separated from their parents has never been resolved. What's more, recent evidence shows that the problem was and remains even worse than was originally understood.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

Despite progress, more action is needed to end childhood lead exposure in NC

Here’s a welcome good news story about kids’ health and the environment: In North Carolina, public health officials have been working for more than 30 years to eliminate childhood lead poisoning – and have come very close to doing so. Child blood levels have dropped dramatically population-wide. Unfortunately, some pockets of high exposure still remain...

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