Original Commentary

Original Commentary

Top Story Weekly Briefing

Several days late and billions of dollars short: Another untimely and inadequate budget takes shape at the General Assembly

The North Carolina House finally approved a proposed budget bill last week for the fiscal year that began six weeks ago. Now comes a period of negotiation with the Senate, which passed its version a few weeks before, and after that one hopes, some measure of legitimate give and take with Gov. Cooper.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

Should the unvaccinated be a lower priority for health care?

As hospitals reach capacity, the ethics of who is prioritized in triage gets murky The Hippocratic oath requires doctors to treat all patients equally — but what happens when you run out of doctors? This isn’t the first time ...
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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

The virus that threatens our democracy

The coronavirus – now rekindled in a “pandemic of the unvaccinated” – is forcing us yet again to adjust our daily routines and recalibrate our expectations of normalcy. Even people who got their shots early and thought they were in the clear are finding they need to keep their masks handy.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

Ideology, fear, and denial: the GOP and the state budget

By far the single most important legislation with which North Carolina elected leaders grapple each year is the state budget bill.  The budget details how the state will spend tens of billions of tax dollars on hundreds of core public services and structures and includes scores of other large and important changes to state law. Virtually all other priorities at the General Assembly pale in comparison.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

Our nation seems to be broken, but…

I am angry. You are angry. Hell, the entire nation is angry. But what makes this such a challenging time is that we are not all angry about the same things. I am angry that we have developed vaccines that dramatically prevent the spread of COVID, but that in much of the country, the vaccine itself is treated as if it were the plague.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

The resistance to vaccines and masks: Decades of anti-government propaganda take their toll

“I just don’t trust the government.” That’s at the heart of the explanation provided by millions of Americans these days who refuse to get vaccinated against COVID-19, or even to wear masks. While these doubters and deniers advance all manner of more specific rationales...

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

Lawmakers should let veto of disingenuous anti-abortion bill stand

Though we are only halfway through 2021, this has already been the most catastrophic year for reproductive freedom in the United States since 1973 when Roe v. Wade established the constitutional right to an abortion. Eight states have passed unconstitutional abortion bans, and two, Oklahoma and Arkansas, have passed laws that seek to prohibit abortion in nearly all circumstances.

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Progressive Voices Top Story

NC must end its cruel and unjust denial of services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities

While state leaders idle, thousands remain stuck on waiting list for decades A few weeks ago, I felt devastated when I read about the death of Ruby Loftin. Ruby was a beloved community member, sister, and daughter who died at age 64 after waiting in line (unsuccessfully) for more than 19 years to receive services...

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

It’s time to say ‘no’ to the massive tax conservatives are imposing on Americans

As P.T. Barnum is so famously credited with observing a century and half ago, Americans can be a surprisingly credulous people. Whether it’s a circus sideshow curiosity, a new cure-all elixir or a supposedly surefire “get rich” scheme, ours is a nation of hopeful people who like to believe...

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

My daughter is enrolled in Pfizer’s vaccine trial because I don’t trust COVID

On a sunny Wednesday a little over a month ago, my 7-year-old daughter bravely held my hand as we walked into Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City to participate in a pediatric vaccine trial.  After a numbing agent, a blood draw and a nasal swab, she was finally injected with either a placebo or the first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

Sowing death and destruction for political gain: the GOP and vaccine hostility

There have been many contributing factors to the disastrous scope and scale of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States over the past year, but right now, tragically, misinformation and ignorance top the list. As NC Policy Watch investigative journalist Lynn Bonner reported last week, despite the rapid spread of the deadly and highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus, millions of North Carolinians are still steering clear of vaccination...

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