Voucher Programs and the Constitutional Ethic

school voucher

[Co-written with Cullen Merritt] ABSTRACT America’s public schools have not been exempt from the enthusiasm for “privatization” and contracting-out that has characterized government innovations over at least the past quarter century. A number of the issues raised by school voucher programs and to a lesser extent charter schools mirror the management and efficacy questions raised by privatization generally; however, because public […]

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Weaponizing Speech

Weaponizing Free Speech - social media has become a censorship weapon

A couple of weeks ago, I came across a provocative article by Tim Wu, a media historian who teaches at Columbia University, titled “Did Twitter Kill the First Amendment?” He began with the question: You need not be a media historian to notice that we live in a golden age of press harassment, domestic propaganda and coercive efforts to control political debate. […]

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AL Senate Candidate Roy Moore: “Transgenders Don’t Have Rights”

Roy Moore Senate Campaign

Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore – the man facing allegations of being a pedophile – argued at a press conference Wednesday that “The transgenders don’t have rights.” While some would read this statement as meaning transgender people are not a class of people recognized as being a protected class, based on his previous remarks about LGBTQ people, the comment should probably […]

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Louisiana School District Called Out Again For Religious Proselytizing

Bossier Parish school prayer

The Bossier Parish, Louisiana school district is back in the news again this week as an elementary teacher faces allegations of conducting open prayer with students in her classroom. The allegation follows recent controversy where the parish’s high school faced national backlash over a letter sent to all students (and their parents) threatening to punish any student athlete who engages in silent […]

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Louisville Pub Enters the National NFL Protest Conversation

TK's Pub in Louisville Enters the National NFL Protest Conversation

TK’s Pub in Louisville is the latest small business to enter the NFL protest fray after owner Todd King announced yesterday he is removing all NFL paraphernalia from his restaurant. His stance mirrors that of many other white conservatives: that black athletes should not be allowed to protest racial injustice by silently kneeling during the national anthem. “We don’t like […]

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The “Right” Way to Protest

The "Right" Way to Protest

While it should already be glaringly obvious, angry white conservatives see no legitimate public venue for persons of color to address systemic racism and its lasting effects on the nation. Whether they’re calling for cars to plow through and murder peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters blocking streets or telling “uppity” black actors on Broadway to entertain them rather than make […]

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Louisiana School Threatens Students Who Kneel During Anthem

parkway high school in LA

This morning, the administration of Parkway High School in Bossier Parish, Louisiana sent a letter to all students (and their parents) threatening to punish any student athlete who engages in silent protest during the national anthem. In the letter, Principal Waylon Bates rationalized the unconstitutional threat referring to state high school athletic regulations saying all athletes must “stand in a respectful […]

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Florida: Pasco County School Targets Student Kneeling During Pledge

Wiregrass Elementary Pledge of Allegiance controversy

Pasco County school district in Florida is under fire after targeting and publicly humiliating a student who chose to kneel during the Pledge of Allegiance this week. The incident follows Trump’s attack on NFL players sitting out the anthem to protest racial injustice. Reporting on the infringement of the student’s constitutional rights, ABC 6 reported: A first grader in Pasco […]

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Trump, the Anthem, Free Speech & the Fight Against Racial Inequality

Trump, the Anthem, Free Speech & the Fight Against Racial Inequality

When Colin Kaepernick first began kneeling during the national anthem, no one noticed and for the most part, no one cared. It wasn’t until right-wing pundits began screaming about how offended and disrespected people should feel over his peaceful protest that people began forming opinions based more on ‘hot take’ outrage than actual law, reason or ethics. That white-hot rage reached […]

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