The Cost of Congressional Dithering

The Cost of Congressional Dithering

While members of Congress waste time naming post offices and devising ways to get seniors to pay for billionaires’ tax breaks through cuts in Medicare and Social Security, other important business is slipping through the cracks. Specifically, if Congress...
Welcoming Overdue Mercury Standards

Welcoming Overdue Mercury Standards

As a mother with a toddler, I’m always trying to protect my daughter. From choking hazards to toxic household chemicals, from busy streets to steep stairs, there are a lot of dangers that keep us parents on our toes. Unfortunately, there are some toxins our...
Big Tobacco Targets the Young and the Poor

Big Tobacco Targets the Young and the Poor

Hapless smokers, Still remain; For villains they Are just fair game. Toward the end of the Richard Nixon era, there was a popular four-panel political cartoon. It showed the three familiar monkeys with their hands placed to depict “See no evil,”...
Budgeting for Ignorance

Budgeting for Ignorance

Will Rogers said that when Congress is in session, the public gets the same panicky feeling as “when the baby gets hold of a hammer.” Rogers’ observation can also be applied to the mayhem that has broken out in various smash-happy state legislatures....
Marching to Save Our Schools

Marching to Save Our Schools

I was born and raised in Washington, DC before the miracle of air-conditioning. I know well that July is a beast in that city. Yet I will return to Washington, DC on July 30 to participate in the Save Our Schools march and rally. Why? Because I don’t want to...
Illegal Discrimination

Illegal Discrimination

They don’t call it the Bible Belt for nothing. In Alabama, leaders of the United Methodist Church, Episcopal Church, Lutheran Church, and Roman Catholic Church have spoken out against HB 56, the state’s new anti-immigrant law. They say it runs counter to...
Paving the Road to a Hungrier, Unhealthier, and Less-Educated Nation

Paving the Road to a Hungrier, Unhealthier, and Less-Educated Nation

The number of poor children had already grown by 2.1 million in 2009 over pre-recession levels, with continuing high joblessness among parents raising concerns that poverty will continue to worsen for some time. Since kids who spend more than half their childhood in...
McDiabetes: Top Docs Tell McDonald’s To Stop Marketing Junk

McDiabetes: Top Docs Tell McDonald’s To Stop Marketing Junk

McDonald’s should heed a call from some of the nation’s leading health professionals and stop marketing junk food to kids. It certainly has good reason to do so. One in three children is at risk for developing type 2 diabetes at some point in their lives...
Big Coal Buys Access to 4th Graders

Big Coal Buys Access to 4th Graders

If some predator were stalking fourth graders in your community, there’d be a mighty uproar to make the predator get away and stay away from your schools. But what if the stalker were the coal industry, dressed in an academic outfit in a gambit to brainwash...
Don’t Cut Head Start

Don’t Cut Head Start

The colors were brighter than any she had seen before. Shapes, letters, and lots and lots of colors adorned the walls. Around the room, children worked together building high rises with colored blocks and “reading” colorful picture books. “I had...
The Sixties Made Me Do It

The Sixties Made Me Do It

I try to avoid religious commentary, but — Good God! What is it about confession that the Catholic hierarchy can’t seem to grasp? The grotesque epidemic of priestly pedophilia that has roiled the church has been under assessment in a five-year, $2-million study...
Education Is Universal but Unequal

Education Is Universal but Unequal

Rich kids’ schools Are full of flair; Poor kids’ schools Exude despair. Cities rarely make headlines for their good news. Just the reverse. Take mine. Norwalk has garnered national TV and newspaper coverage for prosecuting a homeless mom who was stealing...