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Greensboro Police again face charges of profiling, brutality

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 15:00

One of the Greensboro police officers involved in the Jose Charles case is again at the center of racial profiling and police brutality complaints. The incident, which happened late last month, is again raising questions about a department that has for years faced charges of profiling and several high-profile brutality cases. From a story this ...

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U.S. House okays gift to predatory payday lenders; only one NC Republican votes “no”

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 14:30

Another day in congress; another reprehensible giveaway to corporate special interests that prey upon vulnerable people. The latest entry in this dreadful parade: A vote in the U.S. House of Representatives to forbid the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau from…you guessed it…protecting consumers from financial abuse — in this case the 400% interest sharks in the ...

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Free speech controversy brewing at Elon University

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 13:30

One of North Carolina’s preeminent private colleges is ground zero this week for a fascinating controversy over censorship and freedom of the press.  The university’s student-run news network published a stirring editorial this week documenting claims that efforts were made to bar student reporters and photographers from documenting a recent panel discussion of last month’s ...

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National fair courts group: Trump nominee for NC federal vacancy should be rejected

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 11:48

The good government watchdogs at the nonpartisan Alliance for Justice are out with a damning assessment of President Trump’s nominee for the long vacant federal District Court seat in North Carolina’s Eastern District. The 13 page report offers a detailed and disturbing look at the career of Thomas Farr and his far right views. As ...

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Author of book on tragic Hamlet chicken plant fire to speak at September 26 luncheon

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 09:36

NC Policy Watch presents a special Crucial Conversation luncheon: Prof. Bryant Simon discusses his new book, “The Hamlet Fire: A Tragic Story of Cheap Food, Cheap Government and Cheap Lives” Click here to register For those too young or too new to North Carolina to remember, the horrific 1991 chicken plant fire at imperial Foods ...

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Has Trump made another deal with Dems on DACA? Hardliners call him “Amnesty Don”

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 06:58

It appears from various national news reports this morning that President Trump has backed away from his disastrous plan to deport hundreds of thousands of young people who have benefited from President Obama’s DACA program. This is from Associated Press and the Greensboro News & Record: “The top House and Senate Democrats said Wednesday they ...

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UNC Students threaten federal lawsuit over “Silent Sam”

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 17:31

University of North Carolina students threatened a federal lawsuit Wednesday unless the Chapel Hill campus’ “Silent Sam” statue is taken down. Hampton Dellinger, a Durham attorney, is representing the Black Law Students Association, a professor and 12 individual students. Dellinger sent a letter Wednesday to UNC President Margarent Spellings, UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt, members ...

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Measuring poverty shows that government programs are working

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 14:30

Every year when the Census Bureau releases its annual updates on the economic well-being of the nation and our state, we turn to a measure that has largely been rejected by most people as reflective of what it takes to get by today. The poverty measure, as typically lifted up in media reports, is calculated ...

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Lunch & Listen: On the future of DACA and the need for an immigration policy based on human rights not exclusion (video)

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 12:53

The Trump administration recently announced it was ending the DACA protections provided by the Obama administration for young, undocumented immigrants brought here by their parents. President Trump wants Congress to come-up with a new version of the program or let it expire. The New York Times reports the first attempt to protect these immigrants from ...

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Voters for Clean Elections Director details attacks on judicial independence

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 11:51

A spotlight has been on the politicization of the courts this legislative session, but it’s not the first time lawmakers have tried to manipulate the judiciary for what seems like partisan gain. In an article titled “History of Attacks on Judicial Independence,” North Carolina Voters for Clean Elections Director Melissa Price Kromm writes that the ...

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Approach to disaster relief funding is in need of drastic change

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 10:15

Last week, Congress passed a bill that included over $15 billion in disaster relief funding dedicated to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The bill, which included another provision that extends the debt-ceiling for three months, is in response to a cry from FEMA officials earlier this week who warned that the agency could run ...

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Former UNC chancellor, prominent faculty speak out against “Silent Sam”

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 09:00

Former UNC Chancellor James Moeser is among the voices that spoke out for the removal of the “Silent Sam” Confederate monument on the school’s Chapel Hill campus Monday night. The statue was the focus of a panel discussion on campus Monday night and has been at the center of a recent firestorm on the UNC ...

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Surprising mayoral result in Charlotte

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 06:51

Mayor Jennifer Roberts is out in Charlotte. She lost the Democratic primary to the city’s Mayor Pro Tem Vi Lyles. While surprising and perhaps disappointing to some who appreciated Roberts’ stand on HB2, the Lyles win assures that Democrats will be lead by a progressive in the November election in the state’s largest city. Lyles ...

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Rep. Justin Burr: Judicial redistricting, merit selection may not be either-or scenario

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 17:16

The House and Senate just might come to a deal when it comes to judicial redistricting and merit selection: pass them both and see what sticks. Rep. Justin Burr (R-Stanly, Montgomery) said Tuesday after a House judicial redistricting committee meeting that a deal between the House and Senate in which Representatives pass judicial redistricting and ...

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New federal data: The ACA works, but would work better if NC expanded Medicaid

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 16:15

Today, the U.S. Census Bureau released state-level health insurance data that prove once again that the Affordable Care Act is working. In a year that has been filled with the White House working to sabotage the ACA and the GOP’s efforts to repeal and replace the ACA, lawmakers now have even more evidence that the ...

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New federal data: The ACA works, but would work better if NC expanded Medicaid

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 16:15

Today, the U.S. Census Bureau released state-level health insurance data that prove once again that the Affordable Care Act is working. In a year that has been filled with the White House working to sabotage the ACA and the GOP’s efforts to repeal and replace the ACA, lawmakers now have even more evidence that the ...

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National report touts North Carolina universities

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 15:30

North Carolina universities once again feature prominently in U.S. News & World Report‘s oft-cited annual rankings of the nation’s top colleges. Duke University, Wake Forest University, UNC-Chapel Hill, N.C. State University, UNC-Charlotte, East Carolina and Gardner-Webb all placed on the report’s rankings of national universities—a measure often pointed to by higher education leaders in the ...

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Architectural Digest on Confederate monuments, history of toppled statues

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 15:05

Leave it to Architectural Digest to produce a really great piece about the Confederate monuments controversy. The piece, published this week, looks at when and why we memorialize people and movements with statues — and what happens when the culture rethinks those people or movements and peacefully removes or forcefully topples those monuments. From the ...

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U.S. teacher pay gap (possibly) worst in developed world

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 14:08

According to a new report from the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD), teacher pay in the United States ranks last among the 18 OECD member nations with available data in terms of competitiveness with other professions. In the United States, primary grade (elementary) teachers’ salaries are just 57 percent of the salaries of similarly-educated ...

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Pitt County Bar Association opposes judicial redistricting; House committee meets today

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 09:00

The Pitt County Bar Association delivered a resolution to House lawmakers Monday opposing Rep. Justin Burr’s (R-Stanly, Montgomery) plan to redraw judicial and prosecutorial districts. Rep. Billy Richardson (D-Cumberland) tweeted out the resolution, which was passed Thursday. It states that House Bill 717, the judicial redistricting measure, would be unfair to voters in one district, ...

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