Imagine that you walk into the newborn-nursery ward at an American hospital and you see 100 babies in their bassinets. You are then informed that 33 of these babies will spend time in jail or prison.
This is the reality today for African-American males born in our country. As a black husband, father and physician, I am sick of it.
So I asked the board of the private health foundation I lead for a three-month leave to investigate why opportunity and wellness elude so many of our black, Latino and Asian Pacific Islander sons. Their shades of brown may be different, but many of them face the same challenges: growing up fatherless, dropping out of school, going to jail or getting killed.
There has never been a political climate like this in modern times. We are now in an era of constant chaos. Our elected officials are fighting with no end game in sight. The citizens of our nation are slowly going into a mental depression. Even a stenographer for the House of Representatives recently had a major meltdown right on national television.
Obamacare, national budget, debt ceiling, deficit, immigration and other issues are starting to take a toll on our patience and confidence in our leadership.
It seems that it is not going to get any better in the near future. We have a president who doesn't bother to write a budget for the federal government. The United States is the largest corporation in the world and we have been running it without a budget for the last five years. A shoeshine man has a budget!
Now that the GOP-manufactured economic crisis is over (for the next several months, anyway), one might say the lesson for the Republican Party is best expressed by that old warning: Be careful what you wish for.
Driven by its reactionary Tea Party faction and the Right's newest demagogue, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), the GOP tried to use forcing a shutdown of the government and the debt-default threat to hijack the democratic process – to effectively repeal Obamacare and destroy the authority of the president.
However, wrapped in self-delusion, they misjudged President Obama and the Congressional Democrats – and, as the Republican Party's sinking to record lows in many polls show, the American public – just as they did in the 2012 national election. Not for nothing did conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer, watching the battle unfold, label them Congress' "suicide caucus."
We are producing a nation of unhealthy children and one major contributing category affecting our children's health is a type of food additives known as food dyes.
This rainbow of food coloring that comes in red, blue, green and yellow has its own special aisle in most grocery stores. When children – and their parents look at this beautiful bright array of appealing colors they have no idea that they contain a hidden poison.
In 2003, the dangers of blue dye #1 were highlighted when the Food and Drug Administration issued a public health advisory concerning its use in food. A 2013 study, published in the food and chemical toxicology report, contains some very scary facts about food dyes and the dangerous effects they may have when ingested, especially by our children.
All too often when media coverage speaks of an individual who has been formerly incarcerated, it is usually in a negative context (i.e. arrested again, person of interest, not new to the criminal justice system, lengthy arrest record).
Following this coverage, depending on the gravity of the crime, there may be public outcry as to "why was he/she released in the first place?" As a result, seemingly all offenders are then cast into that same category.
It would be asinine to even suggest every offender returns to society with positive goals and the desire to be a productive member of his/her community. I, too, cringe upon hearing the news of another ex-offender having committed the same or a more appalling crime. Yet, I do contend that amidst that population is a sector with aspirations and hopes of moving forward in their lives!
New York Post columnist Phil Mushnick strikes again.
This time, he is focusing on Adrian Peterson.
His latest column rips he Minnesota Vikings running back and reigning NFL MVP for his decision to play with his teammates in Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers.
Peterson's Vikings lost 35-10.
Mushnick writes that it's "sickening" Peterson would make such a decision given the news of his dying son, who was allegedly murdered by a grown man.
I fell in love on a Monday night. Now, many may say a teenage girl can't know about such things. But that night as I watched Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Dorsett roll downfield 99 yards for a touchdown, I fell head-over-heals in love with the NFL.
It was January 3, 1983 – "Monday Night Football," Dallas vs. Minnesota. I'd never seen anything so inspiring. Dorsett was so free, so graceful and so powerful to me. He was focused and determined. Watching him break free of his competitors, those who wanted to bring him down and stop him from reaching his goal, I was in awe. And I knew then that his run capsulized all that I wanted to accomplish in my life.
That football game is one of my most cherished childhood memories. I have been a passionate NFL fan since that moment – though I switched my loyalties to the Philadelphia Eagles, my hometown team. My family has never understood my love affair with the league. They have balked as play dates, family events, even church services have been rearranged or skipped to fit my football calendar. I ended up spending much of my career in sports journalism, a dream job if ever there was one.