Progressive Voices

Progressive Voices

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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Experts warn against ‘sham election audits’ movement

Experts from four different national nonprofits (the Brennan Center for for Justice, Protect Democracy, Fair Fight Action and States United Action) came together last week at an online panel discussion to examine the latest worrisome trend in undermining democracy: illegitimate election recounts.

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COVID-19 Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

Pandemic’s true impact on farmworkers remains elusive

Limitations of government record keeping, journalism conventions likely helping to obscure the true impact of COVID-19 on migrant communities It’s long been established that agricultural workplaces are among the nation’s most dangerous. The latest census on fatal occupational injuries by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that...

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Trustees’ handling of Nikole Hannah-Jones’ tenure application shows how university boards often fail the accountability test

University boards of trustees hold considerable power over the institutions they govern, but get attention only when they’re hiring a new president or if there is a crisis. Yet, increasingly boards aren’t navigating or mediating crises – they are creating them. On June 30, after deliberating in a closed session, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Board of Trustees voted 9-4 to grant journalist, MacArthur Fellowship recipient and Pulitzer Prize winner Nikole Hannah-Jones tenure.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

No more excuses for lawmakers when it comes to public schools

Veteran civil rights attorney explains why the General Assembly must comply with a court order to adequately fund public education Recently, state Superior Court Judge David Lee issued the latest order in the Leandro v. State lawsuit. The judge directed the state to remedy the longstanding violation of the constitutional right of North Carolina public school children to a “sound basic education” ...

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Protecting the health of North Carolinians shouldn’t be a game

Durham high school student explains why vaccine lottery could backfire in the long run North Carolina’s vaccine lottery just announced its first two winners. But while the $1 million and $125,000 prizes are going to two very lucky (and admittedly, very deserving) individuals, the lottery itself runs counter to our values as a society and a state.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

The NC Drug Tax is designed to ensnare and penalize people, especially those of color

Damned if you do, damned if you don't: The tax is required, but nearly impossible to pay Last week, I tried and failed to pay the North Carolina Drug Tax. Turns out, failure was inevitable: It’s virtually impossible to pay this tax. So why is it still law?

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

A 303-mile hole in claim that the Mountain Valley Pipeline is critical to energy security

After the recent cyberattack on the Colonial Pipeline, fossil fuel industry advocates have redoubled their efforts to frame the completion of other U.S. pipeline projects as a critical energy security issue. However, there is a 42-inch wide, 303-mile long gaping hole in this line of argumentation: the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP).

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North Carolina failed Ruby: 15,000 others still wait

Woman’s death highlights Innovations Waiver wait list crisis When I first learned about Ruby Loftin’s unexpected death a few weeks ago, I was heartbroken. Friends describe Ruby as bringing joy to all who knew her. I imagine her sweet spirit and welcoming smile and wish that I had known her.

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Original Commentary Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

As climate emergency grows more urgent, Duke Energy seeks to supersize CO2 pollution

Energy giant must halt planned fossil fuel expansion, aggressively embrace renewable energy, storage, conservation North Carolina—and the world—are well into the climate emergency. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres recently stated that the world “is on the verge of the abyss” if we do not move at lightening pace to decarbonize our economies by 2030.

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Some simple truths about critical race theory and the cynical campaign to distort it

The late historian John Henrik Clarke explained the dominant subculture’s preoccupation with manipulating history. Europeans “began manipulating history in the 15th century to justify the slave trade,” said Clarke, a pioneer in Pan-African studies, during an interview with Tony Brown on Brown’s eponymous show in the 1970s. Modern racism incubated during this period, Clarke said.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

The path back to sanity is not so clear: Hate, venom and a former president who seems to think he’s still president

There is way too much hate and way too much misinformation spreading across our political landscape these days. I’ve watched and written about politics for more than 55 years and never seen anything that approaches this mess. At the top of the dreadful heap is a former president who seems to think he is still president and spends most of every day trashing everyone who disagrees.

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Original Commentary Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

Memorial Day memories: The courage of war correspondents

I never fought in the Vietnam War. I joined United Press International, a worldwide wire service, in 1975 at the end of that conflict. My heroes were UPI war correspondents — Leon Daniel, Kate Webb and Joseph L. Galloway. Daniel was a friend. He died in 2006. Webb was a role model and later, mentor. She died in 2007. I knew Galloway, interviewed for this piece, from his legendary combat accounts.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

I represented an innocent man on death row: Here’s why NC must end the death penalty

In September 2014, I was sitting with Henry McCollum at the moment a judge ordered his release from death row for a crime he did not commit. Many folks in the courtroom clapped in celebration. Others embraced out of relief. It had been 30 years since Henry and his brother Leon Brown--two innocent and intellectually disabled children--had been convicted and sentenced to death in Robeson County, North Carolina.

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New federal effort to aid homeless students must include college and university populations

CULLOWHEE – I was elated recently when I read an article by NC Policy Watch education reporter Greg Childress (“$23 million coming to NC to help public school students experiencing homelessness”) detailing U.S. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona’s efforts to support homeless students. The American Rescue Plan’s Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Homeless Children and Youth Fund will assist K-12 students who experience homelessness.

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Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

Special to PW: ALEC-inspired bill promoting more campaign finance secrecy should be rejected

Four out of five Americans, across the political spectrum, consistently support transparency when it comes to contributions to organizations that spend money on campaigns. Unfortunately, a growing number of states, now including North Carolina, are advancing so-called "donor privacy" bills to block public access to information about who is spending big money to secretly influence our vote and our government.

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