The tragedy of slavery: it isn’t over

Slavery. The very word conjures up images of pain and suffering, oppression and subjugation, sin! More than 500,000 black Africans were kidnapped, sold like livestock and forced to perform backbreaking work. Families were torn apart as young children were removed from their parents and husbands and wives were separated. Slaves were forced to endure beating, […]

Dropouts . . . who cares?

Dropout crisis. What crisis? In California, officially, the graduation rate is 87 percent and climbing. New accountability measures like the High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) help teachers get students through to graduation. If there was a crisis, there would be extensive media coverage and politicians would be demanding action. The state and local districts have […]

Incomprehensible forgiveness: lessons from the Amish

Forgiveness is not usually the lead story on national news, but lately it has been because of the murder of Amish children in their one-room school in Pennsylvania. The demented actions of a milk truck driver have thrown open a window into a closed community where forgiveness is as natural as breathing. Hate and revenge […]

Corn is not the answer Ethanol: more hype than hope

Driving. Nothing is more American. Nothing is more central to our lives. Since the first cars rolled off Henry Ford’s assembly lines, the car has been integral part of our lives and economy. One in six jobs revolves around the car. We are dependent upon the car which makes us dependent upon oil . . […]

Sexual harassment training makes the workplace safe for all

In 1909 Rose Schneiderman, a worker in a New York City ladies’ garment factory, approached the factory foreman. He had been pinching the young women who worked for him and they were unhappy about it. Like most women at the time, they (being mostly young, recent immigrants and poor) believed their only option was to […]

Friends and family

You know there’s nothing interesting on television when you find yourself watching DVDs of your favorite shows rather than trying to find something worthwhile on the air. My summer viewing this year largely consisted of past seasons of Friends, the ultimate television experience of my thirty-something generation. While I have always loved the humorous way […]

All students benefit from school counseling programs

As the school year begins, California middle and high school students will benefit from increased access to qualified and credentialed school counselors. The increase in school counselors was due to a bipartisan state budget agreement that allocated $200 million to provide more counselors. Governor Schwarzenegger gave his full support to the addition, recalling his own […]

The World Cup, Islam and European hospitality

Hospitality was Germany’s motto for World Cup 2006: “The world as guest among friends.” Yet there was a note of anxiety in Germany’s effort to present itself as a good host and a good neighbor. Ironically, World-Cup visitors had little contact with their German hosts. “German” hospitality was extended by proxy, by Turkish taxi drivers […]

More oil needed: Alberta…the short term solution

Ah, the car . . . nothing is more American. We drive to work. We drive to the ballpark. We drive to the beach. We drive to the mall. We drive our kids to and from school. Americans have more cars per capita and drive more miles per capita than anyone else. For most of […]