Before Peter Biar Ajak earned a world-class education, before he joined the World Bank as an East Africa expert, before his views and insights were sought around the globe, Philadelphia was his home and launching pad, the place that nurtured his persona and helped shape his thinking.
Last week, news broke that the Justice Department replaced Judge Steven Morley after he had asked for more legal information in a deportation case, inserting a new jurist who quickly ordered the defendant removed from the United States.
The ouster of Judge Steven Morley from the deportation case marks the latest attack on judicial independence by the Justice Department led by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, 15 retired judges wrote in a July 30 letter of protest.
Peter Biar Ajak was a Lost Boy who fled one of Sudan's civil wars and moved to Philadelphia. Friends of the prominent activist have mounted an awareness campaign on social media under the #FreePeterBiar hashtag.
Foreign-born newcomers have fueled Philadelphia's recent population growth, increased its workforce, and boosted the number of entrepreneurs. At the same time, the study said, immigrants have added to the already large pool of poor and less-educated residents.
Jeff Gammage, a staff writer, was part of the five-reporter team that won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for public service. He’s the author of China Ghosts: My Daughter's Journey to America, My Passage to Fatherhood, and has written about adoption for publications including the New York Times. He is a 1982 graduate of James Madison University, and a recipient of the school’s Ronald E. Carrier Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award.