Federal Public Housing Residents Now Protected from Secondhand Smoke
8/1/2018 2:27:18 PM

It sneaks in through doorways, cracks in walls, electrical lines, plumbing, and ventilation systems. It may have been festering in your walls or your neighbors for years and years. It is a critically serious health threat that can trigger life-long disease, debilitation and even death. It’s secondhand smoke. As of this past Monday, all federally owned public housing is to be smoke-free, protecting smokers and non-smokers alike, “Everyone deserves the opportunity to lead a healthy life, and ensuring homes are free from the risks of secondhand smoke is a critical step for the...

Study: Lowering Blood Pressure Helps Prevent Mental Decline
8/1/2018 2:20:42 PM

By Marilynn Marchione   CHICAGO (AP)—Lowering blood pressure more than usually recommended not only helps prevent heart problems, it also cuts the risk of mental decline that often leads to Alzheimer's disease, a major study finds. It's the first time a single step has been clearly shown to help prevent a dreaded condition that has had people trying crossword puzzles, diet supplements and a host of other things in hope of keeping their mind sharp. In the study, people treated to a top blood pressure reading of 120 instead of 140 were 19 percent less likely to...

Dorothy Cotton: Lessons in Servant Leadership and Movement Building
7/25/2018 5:08:36 PM

By Marian Wright Edelman “We love Dr. King. I love Dr. King, but it was not Dr. King’s movement. He did not start the Civil Rights Movement…It was started by one person here, one person there, one person over here. If you see something wrong, sometimes you may have to start an action all by yourself. One person sees something wrong and starts doing something about it. People will join you if you do it with the right spirit.” Dear friend Dorothy Cotton, who died last month at 88, worked tirelessly to do something about the injustices around her that she knew were...

Congress Must Stop Family Separation
7/25/2018 5:06:44 PM

By Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) Like many Americans, the treatment of children and families at the border has shaken me to my core. San Diego-based U.S. District Court Judge Dana Sabraw has essentially said to stop defying the courts and reunite these families. The deadline to reunify parents with children under 5 was July 10th, and the deadline to reunify children five and older is July 26th.   The Administration has asked for an extension saying it would need more time to reconnect parents and children in certain cases. They have requested an extension to the deadline, but...

WHO IS THE BROTHER IN THE BOAT WITH GEORGE WASHINGTON?
7/25/2018 5:04:45 PM

By Oscar H. Blayton We’ve all seen the painting. Gen. George Washington strikes a heroic pose, standing in a boat being rowed through an icy river on his way to win the Battle of Trenton during the Revolutionary War.  But take a close look at Emanuel Leutze’s iconic painting of Washington crossing the Delaware and you might wonder who is the Black man in the boat?  He is third from the left, just to the left of Washington’s right knee, and seemingly straining at an oar. For years, people have speculated that this “Brother in the Boat” may have...

You Don’t Have to Break the Bank to Give Back
7/25/2018 4:57:31 PM

By Dr. Harry L. Williams Earlier this year, a man named Jack Weldon Patrick passed away in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin. A long-time lawyer, Patrick was remembered as a family man, an advocate for social justice, and a respected community leader. One day a check arrived by mail for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) in memory of Jack Weldon Patrick. A few days later, another one arrived, and a few weeks later, another check. Individual donations kept coming to support the work of TMCF and our publicly-supported Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in honor of Jack....

Standing on the Side of Love
7/18/2018 4:12:58 PM

Every July people of faith gather at the Children’s Defense Fund’s Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry* at our Haley Farm servant leadership training site. This year, the call by all major faiths to protect children and welcome the stranger has become an urgent and deafening roar that should grow until our political leaders abandon their cruel policies tearing children from their parents for seeking safe haven in our nation. Rev. Traci Blackmon, Executive Minister of Justice & Local Church Ministries for The United Church of Christ and Senior Pastor of Christ The King United...

Racial Divides Found in Student Loan Defaults
7/18/2018 4:10:04 PM

By Charlene Crowell With 44 million consumers owing student debt that now reaches $1.5 trillion and still climbing, a lot of people want to better understand how and why this unsustainable debt trajectory can be better managed. For Black consumers who typically have less family wealth than other races and ethnicities, borrowing is more frequent, and as a result, often leads to five figure debts for undergraduate programs and well beyond $100,000 for graduate or professional degrees. Besides deep debt incurred to gain a college education, another sphere of concern presents yet another...

How to Address the Coming Shortfall of Primary Care Doctors
7/18/2018 4:07:55 PM

By Dr. G. Richard Olds About 20,000 students recently graduated from U.S. medical schools. Now, they're beginning the next chapter of their training, as residents. Yet less than 7,000 will be pursuing careers in primary care. America will be short up to 43,100 primary care physicians by 2030, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. Medical schools have a responsibility to help fix this shortfall. They can do so by making primary care more alluring to students. Primary care physicians are our healthcare system's first line of defense. They diagnose illnesses,...

SHAME, SHAME, SHAME
7/18/2018 4:04:19 PM

By Oscar H. Blayton There was a reason Ku Klux Klan members wore hoods that hid their faces. Anonymity allows people to act upon their worst instincts without having to suffer the consequences. Southern bigots acted out their racial hatred as night riders and resumed their roles as responsible doctors, policemen, judges and other model citizens the next day because no one knew who was behind the masks. The internet has given individuals similar anonymity, allowing trolls and haters to assume false or cloaked identities as they terrorize their victims in cyberspace. There had...