Liberals, be grateful for conservative court’s ruling on sports betting

Liberals are not in the habit of expressing gratitude for the five conservative justices on the U.S. Supreme Court, especially since one of them, Justice Neil Gorsuch, presides where some liberals believe President Obama’s nominee should rightly be. But liberals should be grateful, at least this week, in the wake of a ruling that struck down a federal anti-gambling law because the decision strengthens blue-state resistance to President Donald Trump. Moreover, it might deepen appreciation for something liberals historically dislike: federalism and the doctrine of state’s rights.

Children of color are drowning — in pools … and in schools

Our children are drowning. The rate of drowning, in a literal sense, for children of color is three times that of white children in this country per Jeff Wiltse, author of Contested Waters: A Social History of Swimming Pools in America. The rate of academic drowning is much the same.  Now New Haven has lost three more of its schools due to racial isolation standards. However, I can’t help but ask if districts that are predominantly white would also be forced to close due to their lack of minority student enrollment.

Dysfunctional schools are crippling our children — and it’s our fault

I’ve taught English at Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford for six years. We currently have five math teachers for grades 6-12, and during my tenure, I’ve seen eight other math teachers come and go. Some left for other opportunities. Some left because they were unprepared for the demands of this job; at least one left teaching all together. Three left mid-year, forcing us to use a long-term sub while we looked for a suitable replacement.

Let’s get legal sports gambling on the books

Now since the Supreme Court in a 6-3 decision has struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, which banned sports betting nationwide except for Nevada, states across the nation are scrambling to grab onto this judicial breakthrough by seeking to legalize sports gambling. However, we cannot be too hasty in this endeavor before proper legal statutes are established to regulate the proper way to ‘play the game.’ Aside from Nevada’s policy implementation, Connecticut lawmakers would have to quickly tend to a series of simple but tedious legal disputes.

Diversity — Middletown’s greatest weapon to close the opportunity gap

I was born and raised in Connecticut by my mother, a woman who was a strong advocate for my education. Looking back, I have no idea how she was able to be such a fierce and tireless champion of my education, while working incredibly hard as a single parent to provide for her only child. Meeting with my teachers on a daily basis and demanding more rigorous coursework to ensure I was prepared for college. Forcing school administrators to see past their own lowered expectations because of my race. Molding me into an avid (now, lifelong) reader. As a kid, my mother’s advocacy was something I took for granted until many years later in my academic and professional career.

What’s next for CT’s unfunded pensions, since the legislature did nothing

Connecticut’s unfunded pensions for state employees – about $127 billion in debt borne by today’s taxpayers – are much talked about.
As the legislative session ended, once again, nothing was done to stem the continuing losses and increasing debt payments.  Those who blocked reform may think they won, but the victory is truly Pyrrhic. Likely consequences?

If taxes are raised again, expect to see more and more people moving out of the state.

To effect change, Connecticut needs to pay legislators a living wage

“Still revolutionary?” Hardly! Connecticut isn’t the least bit revolutionary. But it could be if we stopped preventing good people with good ideas from running for office by making it impossible for them to support their families. There are many different things that we could be doing, but none of it will get done because our legislature is too insulated. There are no new ideas because there are no new people. Why? State legislators in Connecticut only earn $28,000 per year. In one of the most expensive places to live in this country our legislators earn the equivalent of around $13.50 an hour, and that’s only if you pretend they only work 40 hour work weeks.

Connecticut needs a moratorium on crumb rubber

Health, the environment, and wildlife. These are only a few areas of life that the installation of crumb rubber (recycled tire rubber) on playgrounds and playing fields negatively affects. My goal in this letter is to effectively express the importance of establishing a moratorium on the use of recycled tire rubber (crumb rubber) at municipal and public school playgrounds.

President Trump, Make America great again by uniting Palestine and Israel

Reliably unpredictable and defiantly unconventional, our President Donald Trump is known as a wily negotiator of real estate and trade deals, a creative manipulator of immigration and election laws as well as grandstander on domestic and foreign policy—tax cuts for the wealthy, reneging on international agreements and treaties (Paris Climate Accord, Iran Nuclear Deal). But now he’s outdone himself. He’s keeping his promise to make America great again by taking the first step to make Palestine/Israel one country again.

Connecticut needs natural gas infrastructure upgrades

Connecticut needs more supplies of all kinds of affordable, reliable energy — and that means sensible, long overdue expansion of our natural gas supply infrastructure as well as investments in increased renewables as they make economic and operational sense for our power grid.

On the new HUD subsidy calculation — check the math

The headline “HUD plan raises rents on poor” covered the entire width of the front page of the April 28 edition of the Connecticut Post. The story began with the following alarming lead: “A plan by the Trump administration to triple rents for the nation’s poorest families is running into a wall of opposition from fair housing advocates and members of Connecticut’s Congressional delegation.”

Combating intolerance at Connecticut’s colleges

What should be done about the increased intolerance of differing points of view at residential and community colleges within the Connecticut State university system? There should be the free exchange of ideas at a public university. If private universities wish to depart from free intellectual inquiry and recede into enforced intellectual conformity, that may be their right, so long as civil rights such as due process are respected and no Connecticut state dollars are involved.