The Common Good

wage

Empowering Women Empowers Us All

Watching the news cycle for the past week or so, I have been pleasantly surprised at how much the issue of poverty is being discussed. There have been many analyses of the successes and failures of the War on Poverty, the 50th anniversary of which we marked last week. But there is one report that has particularly fascinated me — and many others — as it describes how women have been struggling the most against poverty in the United States. In partnership with the Center for American Progress, this year’s Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink examines the problem of poverty as it pertains to women and proposes solutions to eradicate it.

Although those of us who have lived and worked in low-income neighborhoods have witnessed firsthand how poverty affects women and their children, seeing the numbers laid out is still overwhelming.

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A Devotion for Wall Street

tunics tree of lifeOne of the constant threads in scripture is, "Give us this day our daily bread." Nothing more, nothing less. Underneath this admonition is the assumption that the more we store up for tomorrow the less people will have for today. And in a world where 1 percent of the world owns half the world's stuff, we are beginning to realize that there is enough for everyone's need, but there is not enough for everyone's greed. Lots of folks are beginning to say, "Maybe God has a different dream for the world than the Wall Street dream."

Maybe God's dream is for us to live simply so that others may simply live. Maybe God's dream is for the bankers to empty their banks and barns so folks have enough food for today.

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ICE Follies: 'Silent' Raids are Worse Than Useless

There are no whirring helicopters, law enforcement vehicles, or hundreds of federal agents swooping down on businesses as in days of old. Instead, such immigration raids have been replaced by a less overtly brutal approach: "silent" raids, or audits of work eligibility I-9 forms.

But the fear remains.

At the first whisper of an employer receiving notice from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that employees' eligibility records are about to be checked, pulses rise. Legal workers worry about being erroneously bounced out of work; unauthorized employees fear being kicked out of the country and separated from their families. Communities are shaken, business operations are disrupted, and jobs are lost. The anemic economy takes another hit.

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The Time for Immigration Reform is Now

Back when President Obama was candidate Obama, one of his favorite mantras on the stump was the need to recapture what Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Fast, Pray, and Act -- New Threats to the Poor

The extreme budget cuts proposed to critical programs that save the lives, dignity, and future of poor and vulnerable people have crossed the line.
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Acknowledging the Giver of Martin Luther King Jr.'s Dreams

In anticipation of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (this coming Monday, January 17, I'm sharing one of my favorite MLK Jr. quotes:
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The Testimony of One North Korean Girl

You need to watch this. In fact, you must watch this. Please watch this.
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The Best Part of Wanting to Change the World

I'm thankful that God rarely answers our constant requests wanting to know the future. Why?
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Cruise Ships: Dark Secrets Below Deck

While working as an entertainer on a cruise ship, I often sat in one of the many distinguished seats on board that reflected my status.
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New York Domestic Workers Call for Rights

Last spring while eating lunch I noticed a domestic worker poring over piles of Christian books.
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