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OPINION
March 10, 2013 | By Andy Stern and Carl Camden
Nearly 8 million Americans go to work every day yet still live below the poverty line. That is in part because the federal minimum wage is too low. Currently, an individual with a full-time job at the minimum wage and a family of three to support will fall below the federal poverty line. These workers, despite putting in regular hours, are struggling to provide basic necessities for themselves and their families. By allowing the minimum wage to remain at a nearly unlivable level, we have deemed certain jobs not worthy enough to meet even our country's minimum standard of living.
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OPINION
April 7, 2014 | By Mark Brilliant
The NCAA must be feeling a bit like Dr. Frankenstein these days: assailed by college football and men's basketball players who reject the NCAA's precious, but mostly mythic, notion that they are student-athletes. At Northwestern University, a group of football players scored a first-round victory before the National Labor Relations Board in a campaign to be recognized as "employees" eligible to unionize. For some college football fans, this evokes disturbing images of burly 18- to 22-year-old player-proletarians marching on picket lines instead of lined up on offensive or defensive lines, much less seated in classrooms.
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OPINION
January 19, 2014 | By John McWhorter
Few things stick out more in black American speech than the pronunciation of "ask" as "ax. " And when I say that it "sticks out," I'm being polite. Attitudes about Ebonics have evolved somewhat as hip hop has become America's favorite music. Even the strictest grammarian would have to agree that Kanye West's "Gold Digger" in standard English wouldn't be worth hearing. And Americans from Jesse Pinkman in "Breaking Bad" to Key and Peele get that it's OK to speak "hood" when you're among friends.
OPINION
April 7, 2014 | Jonah Goldberg
For years, Republicans benefited from economic growth. So did pretty much everyone else, of course. But I have something specific in mind. Politically, when the economy is booming - or merely improving at a satisfactory clip - the distinction between being pro-business and pro-market is blurry. The distinction is also fuzzy when the economy is shrinking or imploding. But when the economy is simply limping along - not good, not disastrous - like it is now, the line is easier to see. And GOP politicians typically don't want to admit they see it. Just to clarify, the difference between being pro-business and pro-market is categorical.
OPINION
September 29, 2013 | By John Bateson
There were 10 confirmed suicides from the Golden Gate Bridge in August. It was the most suicides in any month in the bridge's history. Monday, Tuesday, suicide. Thursday, Friday, suicide. Sunday, Monday, suicide. Over and over, a suicide every three days. The 10th was a 17-year-old girl from Marin County. This information doesn't come from the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District. The district considers itself the official source of all information related to the bridge - except information on suicides.
OPINION
June 13, 2012 | By Nathaniel Frank
A study released this week suggests that, contrary to what years of academic research has said, children of gay parents actually fare worse than others. According to the study's author, Mark Regnerus, a professor at University of Texas at Austin, the research "clearly reveals that children appear most apt to succeed well as adults - on multiple counts and across a variety of domains - when they spend their entire childhood with their married mother and father. " Regnerus says that his study shows stark differences between such children and those with gay parents: the latter are more likely to be unemployed, consider suicide, use drugs, have an STD and fall victim to sexual abuse.
OPINION
July 18, 2011 | By J. Anderson Thomson and Clare Aukofer
Before John Lennon imagined "living life in peace," he conjured "no heaven … / no hell below us …/ and no religion too. " No religion: What was Lennon summoning? For starters, a world without "divine" messengers, like Osama bin Laden, sparking violence. A world where mistakes, like the avoidable loss of life in Hurricane Katrina, would be rectified rather than chalked up to "God's will. " Where politicians no longer compete to prove who believes more strongly in the irrational and untenable.
OPINION
February 23, 2014 | By Adam Winkler
What's the best way to minimize the number of guns on California's streets? That's the question confronting gun control supporters after this month's ruling by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals striking down San Diego's restrictions on carrying handguns in public. That case was brought by gun owners who applied for but were denied permits to carry concealed weapons. San Diego will undoubtedly appeal the decision in the hope of saving its restrictive policy for awarding concealed carry permits.
OPINION
September 27, 2010 | Gregory Rodriguez
For all the talk these days of porous borders and external threats to the United States, the core of our sense of security and identity as a nation has always come from within. What's surprising, perhaps, is that it derives less from our vaunted democracy or our freedoms than it does from that rather nebulous notion we call the American dream. The dream is the glue that keeps us all together. It's the vague promise that our lot will get better over time that gives us the patience to endure whatever indignities we suffer at the moment.
OPINION
August 21, 2013 | By Jonathan Turley
Last week, the U.S. government declassified a report about a secret facility in Nevada. Such declassifications are nothing new but, from the report's 400 pages, two words immediately jumped out: Area 51. The government had finally acknowledged the name of a controversial base in the desert north of Las Vegas where it conducted top-secret research. The document's release will do little to quash the glut of Area 51 conspiracy theories about recovered alien spaceships and government cover-ups.
OPINION
April 7, 2014 | By Charis E. Kubrin and Erik Nielson
For 16 months, Bay Area rapper Deandre Mitchell - better known as Laz Tha Boy - has been sitting in a jail cell faced with a decision no artist should have to make: whether to defend his innocence at trial, knowing his music likely will be used as evidence against him, or take a plea bargain and admit to crimes he maintains he did not commit. Mitchell's case dates to October 2012, when he was indicted for his alleged role in two gang-related shootings that occurred that year. Prosecutors didn't present a single arrest or conviction to establish Mitchell's association with a criminal gang, and with conflicting eyewitness testimony - and no physical evidence connecting him to the shootings, according to defense attorney John Hamasaki - prosecutors elected to introduce something else: Mitchell's violent gangsta rap videos and lyrics, which were presented to the grand jury as evidence of his criminal behavior.
OPINION
April 6, 2014 | By Jonathan Tepperman
KIGALI, Rwanda - Twenty years ago Monday, the state of Rwanda set about trying to hack itself out of existence. Starting on April 7, 1994, Hutu extremists, in a premeditated 100-day campaign, systematically butchered close to 1 million Tutsis - three-quarters of all those in the country - as well as moderate Hutus, driving countless more into exile. Yet two decades later, Rwanda is very much alive; indeed, in many respects, it's thriving. But it remains a confounding place. Visit the country today and you find a remarkably peaceful and well-ordered land.
OPINION
April 6, 2014 | Doyle McManus
When Obamacare's first open-enrollment period ended last week, the tally was impressive: 7.1 million Americans signed up for insurance on federal and state exchanges by the March 31 deadline, several million more signed up for Medicaid and a whole lot of under-26 Americans got covered by their parents' plans. Those numbers represent a significant political victory for Democrats, making it highly unlikely that Republicans will be able to deliver on their promise to repeal the law. "You're not going to turn away 7 or 10 million people from insurance coverage," crowed Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.)
OPINION
April 6, 2014 | By Theshia Naidoo and Lynne Lyman
Jesse Snodgrass had recently transferred to Chaparral High School in Temecula and was feeling out of place and alone in 2012 when a boy named Dan, another newcomer, befriended him. Jesse, a 17-year-old autistic student, wasn't good at making friends and he was pleased by the overture. But there was something he didn't know about Dan: He was an undercover narcotics officer attending class at Chaparral hoping to bust student drug dealers. Dan quickly began exerting pressure on Jesse to sneak a pill from his parent's medicine cabinet or buy him some marijuana.
OPINION
April 6, 2014 | By Jeremy Rifkin
Airbnb is all the talk on Wall Street. Its thirtysomething founders were nearly broke six years ago. Now it seems likely they will soon become billionaires. Their company, which connects 600,000 apartment dwellers and homeowners in 160 countries with millions of people seeking cheap lodging online, is closing a new round of private funding, and it is expected to be valued at $10 billion or more by the end of April. In one night alone during 2013, Airbnb boasted 250,000 guests staying in its members' apartments and houses.
OPINION
April 6, 2014 | By Brett Berk
My Grandma Bobbie is 93 and lives on her own, in a spotless condo decorated with enviable midcentury furnishings. The daughter of a General Motors millwright, she grew up in Detroit riding the streetcar, but one of her goals was to get to the promised land - the suburbs - and preferably by car. For my grandmother, like many older people in her cohort, a car is not only a convenience or a luxury - though it is that; Grandma loved Lincolns and Cadillacs...
OPINION
March 30, 2014 | Doyle McManus
Russian troops are massing menacingly on Ukraine's eastern border. The civil war in Syria is still raging, and 33,000 American troops fight on in Afghanistan. So where is Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel headed this week? To Hawaii - for a meeting with defense ministers from Asia, the region the Obama administration still considers its top foreign policy priority. "Asia is one of the great success stories of the world," Hagel told me in an interview in his Pentagon office last week.
OPINION
February 13, 2014 | By Tom Zoellner
Who doesn't love a train? Who cannot fail to be seduced by the most appealing vehicle in human history - the rail-induced sensuality of "Brief Encounter," the desperate heroism of engineer Casey Jones, the creative muscle of the Big Four railroad barons, the plucky fortitude of Thomas the Tank Engine and the Little Engine That Could, all wrapped up in gleaming, rocking steel, punctuated by a high, lonesome whistle? And yet California voters have been expressing morning-after regrets since they voted for Proposition 1A, which promised them a bullet train from Los Angeles to San Francisco.
OPINION
April 4, 2014 | By Timothy Garton Ash
BEIJING - President Xi Jinping is leading an extraordinary political experiment in China. In essence, he is trying to turn his nation into an advanced economy and three-dimensional superpower, drawing on the energies of capitalism, patriotism and Chinese traditions, yet all still under the control of what remains, at its core, a Leninist party-state. He may be a Chinese emperor, but he is also a Leninist emperor. This is the most surprising and important political experiment on Earth.
OPINION
April 3, 2014 | By Jessica A. Levinson
Thank you, Supreme Court. Before your decision Wednesday in McCutcheon vs. FEC, Americans were confined to giving a measly total of $48,600 in campaign contributions to federal candidates (enough for about nine candidates) and a total of $74,600 to political action committees. That means individuals were subject to aggregate contributions limits totaling a mere $123,200. Of course, individuals could, and still can, give unlimited sums to independent groups, such as so-called super PACs and other nonprofit corporations.
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