President Barack Obama, speaking from the same Washington stage where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered a defining speech steering a nation’s course toward civil rights, said that for all the transformation, work remains in countering growing U.S. economic disparities.
Martin Luther King Jr. declared from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial that the March on Washington was “not an end but a beginning.” Fifty years later, the push for racial equality still isn’t complete.
In striking down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act, the U.S. Supreme Court has restored a measure of constitutional order. Based on 40-year-old voting data that doesn’t reflect current political conditions, this provision subjected a seemingly random assortment of states and localities to onerous burdens and unusual federal oversight.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has declared that, at least when it comes to voting rights, the U.S. Supreme Court is guilty of wishful thinking. He is also showing both how difficult and how important it is to overcome that kind of thinking.
When emergency manager Kevyn Orr arrives in near-bankrupt Detroit, almost half of Michigan’s black population will live under the rule of state overseers with little say in the governments nearest them.
At Dugsi Academy, a public school in St. Paul, Minnesota, girls wearing traditional Muslim headscarves and flowing ankle-length skirts study Arabic and Somali. The charter school educates “East African children in the Twin Cities,” its website says. Every student is black.
Level 3 Communications Inc., an operator of global fiber-optic network, promoted Chief Operating Officer Jeff Storey to the top job, filling a role vacated by longtime Chief Executive Officer Jim Crowe.
The word “dignity” can’t be found in the Constitution, but in his majority opinion in U.S. v. Windsor, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy uses it no fewer than nine times (actually 10, if we include “indignity”). The foundation of the court’s opinion, and its real importance, lie in its insistence on human dignity as a constitutional value, one that stands at the heart of our longstanding commitment to equal protection of the laws.