Everyone may be experiencing tough economic times, but as usual, these struggles hit some harder than others. According to the most recent numbers released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate for African Americans remains a shocking 13%, while black homeownership is at its lowest in almost 20 years. The black unemployment rate in America remains twice that of whites, and nearly three times that of Asians.
We all do things that we would want to be considered â€śoff the recordâ€ť â€“ that is words we have spoken that we really wouldnâ€™t want repeated. Now that I host a daily live radio show, I find that I have to be very careful to only make comments that I would want and encourage my listening audience to repeat elsewhere.
The debate over Obamacare is unlikely to be settled anytime soon. Even as the exchanges made their debut, we heard horror stories of crashing websites and confusing user interfaces. Fans of the law saw this as proof its popularity, while opponents viewed it as evidence of incompetence. But for all the hours spent arguing about the law, it would seem that journalists, politicians and citizens alike are still confused about what it all means. This goes not only for the details of the law itself, but also for the state of healthcare in the United States.
Abortion has been a shadowy and divisive topic for decades, but that is changing. Americans are becoming increasingly pro-life, and this shift in sentiment has led to the closure of a record number of abortion clinics this year. The Baptist Press reported that as of mid-Septemberâ€”according to Operation Rescueâ€”forty-four abortion clinics in America were no longer open for business. More women are choosing life, and more communities are rejecting the presence of unsafe and unregulated clinics.
Recently, many Christians were alarmed to learn that military leaders had begun classifying mainstream Christian organizations such as the American Family Association (AFA) as â€śdomestic hate groups,â€ť comparable to the Ku Klux Klan. The briefing in question took place at Camp Shelby (Mississippi) in early October. What has happened in the last few years to bring about such confusion in an arm of our government which has traditionally honored God unapologetically?
As a black American who lived through the Civil Rights movement, I would never romanticize Americaâ€™s past. But there was indeed a time when the overwhelming majority of American children were born to married parents, the divorce rate was very low, and men generally did what it took to provide for their families. Those days are quickly slipping away from us, and unless we make radical changes in our culture, those days may be gone forever. But it is not in the grave yet!
During the Great Depression, the government initiated a temporary program to help distribute surplus food and alleviate hardship. During the Kennedy administration the program restarted, expanding to be a permanent entity. This Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamps, as it has been traditional known, has attracted particular scrutiny recently. The House has voted to cut $39 billion over the next ten years from the SNAP budget.
Far from being on the brink of a true energy shortage, two relatively new discoveries open up the possibility that affordable, abundant energy lies in our foreseeable future. Crystalline natural gas (known to scientists as methane hydrate) can be found in tremendous quantities underneath the ocean. In laymanâ€™s terms, methane hydrate is ice that can be burned for fuel. Known to scientists since the 1970s, recent improvements in drilling technology make harvesting this rich, clean fuel source a realistic prospect.
But who is really victimized when the power to tax is abused or mismanaged? The Washington Post recently ran a series of articles exposing years of extensive incompetence and abuse in the collection of property taxes which put thousands of Washington, DC residents into potential foreclosure for owing as little as $150 in back taxes.
Julian Bond, famous civil rights activist, wrote an article in USA Today this year on the 50thÂ anniversary of the March on Washington. His selective memory pointed out the similarities of todayâ€™s economic woes of blacks to those of the 1960s. Unfortunately for him, his gloom-colored glasses did not spend enough time celebrating black breakthroughs the political world, such as the first black president, two black Secretaries of State, numerous black mayors (even in unlikely locations like Utah). He also failed to mention the numerous blacks that have headed major Fortune 500 companies, started flourishing businesses, not to mention building literal empires in music, film and entertainment.