Civil Rights

COMMENTARY

David Hecker: Conservative myths about critical race theory hurt students and teachers

BY: - September 1, 2021

As educators, we believe in teaching kids the truth about our history and society, even when the truth is not pleasant. But some people across the country are working to infringe on teachers’ right and responsibility to be honest with their students about the history or racism, past and present, in our nation. In keeping […]

On this day in 1964: Democratic titans Conyers and Austin square off for U.S. House seat 

BY: - September 1, 2021

On Sept. 1, 1964, John Conyers Jr. edged out Richard Austin in the Democratic Party primary contest for Michigan’s new 1st Congressional District seat. Conyers won the primary 108 votes. The race was so close that Austin requested a recount. After the ballots were tabulated again, Conyers’ margin of victory was a razor-thin 44 votes, […]

Dems have pushed to end the ‘tampon tax’ for years. Now Republicans are warming to the idea.

BY: - September 1, 2021

For the past six years, Democratic state lawmakers in Michigan have introduced legislation that would end the sales and use tax on menstrual products.  But, each time the bills were introduced, they never garnered enough support from Republicans that the legislation would make it to the governor’s desk.  This year, state Reps. Tenisha Yancey (D-Harper […]

M-STEP results show learning decline during pandemic, thousands of 3rd graders could be held back

BY: - August 31, 2021

After another year of disrupted learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, Michigan student state assessment scores from this spring declined from the last time students were given statewide assessments in spring 2019, according to the Michigan Department of Education (MDE). According to the 2021 Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress (M-STEP) results released Tuesday, Michigan students […]

How Michigan became a success story for prisoner college programs

BY: - August 31, 2021

WASHINGTON — Prison inmates around the U.S. are getting the chance to do something that was almost unheard of a generation ago: Pursue a college degree while behind bars and with financial support from the federal government. Inmates in 42 states and Washington, D.C., can now get federal grants to work with colleges and universities […]

Michigan Republicans announce voting restrictions ballot measure as end-run around Whitmer

BY: - August 31, 2021

Updated, 9:58 a.m., 9/5/21 with Johnson’s correct party affiliation After months of hearings on legislation restricting voting rights, Michigan Republicans, as expected, unveiled on Monday a citizen-led ballot measure. The advantage of going this route is that the GOP-controlled Legislature has the power to approve it, thus going around Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who has […]

‘We have to make sure that the things that we have fought for don’t get taken away’

BY: - August 30, 2021

Some Michigan residents were among thousands rallying Saturday in the nation’s capital to protest a recent legislation they say suppresses voter rights, particularly for people of color and young people. The Rev. Charles Williams II, Michigan National Action Network chair, addressed the gathering in Washington, D.C. “In 2021, we’re going to keep this fight alive […]

On this day in 1971: KKK bombs empty Pontiac buses set to racially integrate schools

BY: - August 30, 2021

On Aug. 30, 1971, 10 idled Pontiac School District buses were destroyed by Ku Klux Klan members. Dynamite was the weapon.   Black- and silver-haired Kevin Davidson, 61, remembers it like yesterday.  He was 11 when his African-American family moved to Pontiac from Detroit 50 years ago. They lived in the newly constructed and predominantly Black […]

Colleagues of former judge charged with assault say the system failed to protect them

BY: - August 29, 2021

An assault charge against retired Ingham County Circuit Court Chief Judge William Collette earlier this month didn’t surprise some of his former judicial colleagues, who say their reports of his threatening behavior toward them while on the bench were ignored. They contend the problem of bullying and harassment in the court is bigger than Collette, […]

Democrats seek support services for survivors of Native American boarding schools

BY: - August 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — Democratic lawmakers are pushing federal agencies to provide support for survivors of and communities affected by American Indian boarding school policies, the decades-long practice of forcibly sending Native American children to faraway boarding schools that rejected their tribal cultures. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and U.S. Rep. Sharice Davids (D-Kansas) sent a request […]

From housing to health care, LGBTQ+ people have been hit hard by the pandemic

BY: - August 26, 2021

Marwa ElShazly has battled the economic and personal impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, and says it’s taken a toll on her mental health. “I’ve been lucky enough to be working through the entirety of the pandemic, though I had to switch jobs because of furlough and ended up losing my health care for a few […]

House passes voting rights bill, but Senate approval unlikely

BY: - August 25, 2021

The U.S. House on Tuesday passed, 219-212, along party lines a bill to reinstate a core section of the Voting Rights Act — a direct rebuke to state laws the bill’s supporters say have restricted voting rights. The bill, named for the late civil rights icon and longtime Georgia Democratic U.S. Rep. John R. Lewis, […]