Other Voices

Other Voices

Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Roe v. Wade anniversary marks 44 years of dangerous obstruction

When the United States Supreme Court announced its famous ruling in the case of Roe v. Wade on January 22, 1973, it did not introduce abortion to the American public. Indeed, it was far from the first time that the procedure was made legal in the United States. Instead, the ruling brought into the open the common secret of abortion, a procedure that was estimated to have been accessed by 1.2 million people per year in the years immediately prior to legalization. The effect of this landmark decision was not to direct people to get abortions, but to provide those who decide to seek the procedure access to safe and legal care.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

North Carolina’s school voucher program: an accountability and transparency wish list for 2017

A common refrain I hear in the course of my reporting and writing about school vouchers — a program that is set to take a large bite out of our public coffers in North Carolina in the months and years ahead — is that at the end of the day, it’s the parents who should be the enforcers of accountability for this publicly funded effort to shift state money into private schools.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

One heck of a year: A final lookback at 2016

As we watched the egregiously unqualified Donald Trump campaign for and win election to the White House, any good news on the government and politics front was likely to be obscured amid concerns about what Trump’s ascent could ...
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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Lawmakers should help fund storm recovery by halting further corporate tax cuts

Hurricane Matthew has caused extensive damage to the very foundations of communities in eastern North Carolina. While not getting the attention that Floyd did in 1999, it is actually much larger in scope, with 20,000 more homes damaged or destroyed than in 1999. In the face of such devastation, there is opportunity to rebuild our communities stronger than before if North Carolina leaders plan for smart investments.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Court ruling striking down Obama overtime rules leaves workers high and dry

December 1, 2016 was supposed to be a great day for an estimated 156,000 salaried workers in North Carolina. But thanks to a recent federal court order, the day instead brought disappointment and confusion for most of them.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

A big step forward for children with complex needs in North Carolina

Let me tell you about a girl I’ll call O.B. Her story exposes a lot of what’s wrong with North Carolina’s behavioral health system. O.B. has moderate to severe intellectual disability and autism, as well as intermittent explosive ...
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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

This Thanksgiving, fight fear with facts

After this election, many Americans’ Thanksgiving may feature divisive, often uncomfortable, conversations with friends and family who disagree politically. For those of us frustrated by the myths and misinformation that now fuel many such debates, it’s more important ...
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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

A troubling choice, yet glimmers of hope

Those of us aligned with the North Carolina Council of Churches share a political outlook whose priorities include equal rights, equal opportunity, environmental stewardship, ample investment in public services and fair allocation of that investment’s costs.

We believe that the United States must lead by example through sustained efforts to build a just, prosperous and compassionate society, and that those efforts are vital in keeping our nation strong and secure.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Where do progressives go from here?

Four strategic recommendations for dealing with a Trump presidency

We have been somewhere near here before—Reagan in the 1980’s; Bush the Second in the 2000’s. Donald Trump is certainly more crude and cruel than these past presidents, but he is also far less ideological. He has no apparent core values so who knows how much he actually believes all the hateful rhetoric, crazy conspiracy theories, and unrealistic policy proposals he spewed out in his toxic campaign. His instability is certainly cause for grave concern for all of us, especially anyone in vulnerable communities; but that very inconsistency also means that he changes his mind and his message with the winds, and always professes a willingness to make a deal.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

How to make Obamacare work better for everyone

It’s not easy to have a nuanced conversation about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) the week before a national election. So it’s no wonder that the recent announcement of average premium increases for plans sold on the health insurance Marketplaces was met with media hysteria and partisan posturing about the so-called demise of the ACA.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Preventing child deaths with paid family leave

I am a pediatrician and a member the North Carolina Child Fatality Prevention Team. Each year we review dozens of cases to see what policy or practice changes could be implemented to prevent future child fatalities. In the past, we’ve recommended strengthening seat belt laws, graduated drivers licenses, and bicycle helmet laws, all of which have led to a drastic reduction in North Carolina’s child fatality rate.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Reproductive freedom: A key to combating domestic violence

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Competing for time with the cause of breast cancer awareness, and this year eclipsed by the final stretch of an extremely high profile presidential election, it may have been easy to miss ...
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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

For many low-income North Carolinians, Matthew’s damage is deeper than broken buildings

As the state begins recovery efforts following Hurricane Matthew, we begin to see unexpected damages. These damages are beyond the ruin of physical structures. These damages are not the effects of harsh winds and high waters. Instead, they are the years old damages – the damages of persistent poverty, underinvestment, and systemic neglect.

But what does poverty have to do with recovery from Matthew? While the hurricane itself did not distinguish between the rich and the poor, the ability of communities and families to recover will depend largely upon just that.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

NC’s plummeting commitment to higher ed is a recipe for economic disaster

Access to affordable postsecondary education is important to building a workforce in North Carolina that attracts and retains good-paying jobs across the state. Around two out of every three jobs in the state will require some form of post-secondary education by the year 2020. Our state can meet this challenge, but only if we make sure that more people can access and complete these programs. And the biggest barrier to this remains the unaffordability of post-secondary education.

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Progressive Voices

High school is not enough: NC economy desperately needs a boost in adult education and training

In 2016, the defining political debate in North Carolina is over what it really takes to grow an economy that works for everyone—an economy that creates enough jobs for everyone who wants one and ensures that those jobs pay enough to make ends meet and achieve middle class prosperity. Amidst the hullaballoo over taxes, trade and HB2 in this election season, it’s easy to overlook one of the most powerful avenues policymakers can take to build this kind of economy—growing the number of workers with post-high school education.

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Featured Articles Progressive Voices

Grim anniversary marks 40 years of denying reproductive health care to poor American women

Whether or not some of us are uncomfortable with the word or the current statistic, nearly 1 in 3 American women have an abortion in their lifetime, making the procedure a common secret in the lives of women across this country. Depending on one’s viewpoint, the actual incidence may be more or less common than you believe. What is common is that many people think they don’t know anyone who has had an abortion.

It’s likely we do, but this medical procedure has been so stigmatized and politicized that the people we do know don’t talk about their experience. One reason for this stigma is that abortion is the only medical procedure that is banned from most public insurance funding.

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