My birth certificate is ‘fake news’

 Like any other adult person in Connecticut who was born in Hartford, I can go to Room 103 at City Hall, pay a fee, and get a certified copy of my birth certificate. I’ve done that.  I have it. There’s only one problem with that government-issued document – it’s not true. One could even go so far as to call it “fake news.”  I was, indeed born, at the date, time, and location listed on my birth certificate.  However, my mom didn’t give birth to me; I wasn’t conceived when my dad’s sperm met my mom’s egg.

On guns and gun violence: ‘We have met the enemy and he is us’

Occasional mass shootings inevitably spark debate to do “something” about gun violence. But we haven’t as a nation done well with curtailing illegal drugs, Opiods, auto deaths, gun suicides and inner city gun deaths – 6,000 plus annually. Second, even if the NRA, gun manufacturers, dealers and importers all vanish tomorrow we’d still have over 300 million guns in circulation. And even if we passed a batch of new laws we’d still have 300 million. That’s more than the entire western world combined. So the sheer numbers of guns are one part of the problem.

Senator, compromise will produce a ‘beautiful’ gun bill

Imagine that.  President Trump has asked Sen. Chris Murphy to work with three reasonable legislators in crafting a “comprehensive” gun bill that is to be “very powerful.” Just a few suggestions to the Connecticut senator as he is one of the most far-left members of Congress. The most important thing is this. You will have to give into negotiations with the other senators. But in doing so you may, just may, give the American people a “beautiful” effective bill that the President will sign into law to keep our schools safe.

Connecticut’s own ‘Second Amendment’

When people debate the legality of gun control legislation, the focus is usually on the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.  What many people may not realize, however, is that state constitutions often contain a similar (but not identical) provision.  Thus, article first, § 15 of the Connecticut Constitution provides: “Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state.”

Nuzzling muzzles and a dubious entitlement to bear arms

A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed (1791, Second Amendment).

I’m no Constitutional scholar nor historian, but I wonder if the wording of the Second Amendment could use a closer look for true intent and historical context. On reading it you will find combined references to citizens’ right to keep and bear arms and a “necessary” militia to protect the “free State.”

The ‘Year of the Woman’ in Connecticut begins now

Across the nation, 2018 is labeled the “Year of the Woman,” given the high volume of women running for elected office. But here in Connecticut, we can’t wait until November to put “the Year of the Woman” to action. Right now is our time to speak out and be heard. Let’s look at the facts: women in Connecticut currently earn 79 cents to every dollar paid to men, slightly below the national average. The wage gap is greater for women of color: black women earn 58 cents and Latina women earn 47 cents to every dollar paid to white men.

We must do more to protect people with IDD from sexual predators

Sexual assault has dominated the news cycle. It is clear that this issue can no longer be ignored. Easy to miss was a recent story about people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), who are sexually assaulted at a rate seven times higher than those without disabilities. That’s right – seven times. Truly an epidemic. This is horrifying. Sadly, it does not surprise me.

State of the immigrant community far from ‘Connecticut Fairness’

In his annual State of the State address, Gov. Dannel Malloy paints a picture of a “fair Connecticut” that does not currently exist for immigrant youth. On the first day of the 2018 Legislative Session, … he noted that “Connecticut Fairness” means that Connecticut passed the Connecticut Dream Act to ensure equal access to higher education for immigrant students in our state.

Indifference, neutrality help the oppressors, not the oppressed

Indifference manifests itself in ignorance, silence and acceptance. Turning our backs to the injustices suffered by the marginalized, vulnerable, and victimized in our local communities and around the world is a weak and heartless admission that the status quo is just fine with us when it doesn’t affect our lives directly — at least not yet. And that’s a very big “yet” because unchecked turmoil can arrive anytime at our doorsteps regardless of who we think we are.

America needs a Census Bureau director who will count all fairly

Federal elections are the pillar of our national democracy, and the decennial census is the foundation for those elections and assuring that every person is counted accurately and has fair political representation. That makes the responsibility of the Census Bureau to carry out an accurate and fair census a critical charge. Everything from how we are represented in Congress to community resources for our schools, hospitals, and assistance to veterans depends on reliable and accurate census data. Unfortunately, as our country moves along a shrinking timeline for executing the 2020 census, serious legal concerns are emerging regarding how the Trump administration views Census Bureau leadership.

The Asian Registry is an American issue

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. dreamt of a day when Americans would “not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” Remembering his wise words on the day dedicated to his memory inspired me to address a current issue that most have never heard about: The Asian Registry.