Friday, December 13, 2013
Corbett ultrasound comments draw fire
- 1 out of 206 total comment(s)
Fri., 03/16/12 - 09:28 AM
Exactly! Which is why I'm a staunch independent who can't stand either party. I did vote for Corbett, but it was under the impression that he would be fiscally conservative (which I support), but socially moderate (meaning staying out of people's private affairs). I'm very disappointed in the governor in this regard.
Corbett says he supports 'external' ultrasounds for abortion patients
- 1 out of 20 total comment(s)
Thu., 03/15/12 - 14:20 PM
With all due respect, kelprod2, a woman who is raped and becomes pregnant does *not* have a choice. There are too many ideological extremists on both sides of the issue and not enough common sense and willingness to accept the gray zones that sometimes happen in life.
Wounded pit bull bounces back, SPCA growls at dogfighting
- 1 out of 4 total comment(s)
Fri., 02/10/12 - 13:54 PM
And I hope this positive story about pit bulls confirms once again that this breed is NOT human aggressive by nature! A normal, appropriately socialized pit bull makes a wonderful pet because of it's very people-friendly temperament. Pit bulls (of which there are several breeds, not just one type of dog) were specifically bred not to be human aggressive, which makes sense in the context of dog fighting (horrendous as that is) because dog handlers had to be able to pull apart the fighting dogs without getting harmed themselves. Please educate yourselves about this wonderful breed before you automatically believe the sensationalistic media stories!
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Larry Platt: We just won't DROP our anger
- 3 out of 98 total comment(s)
Wed., 01/04/12 - 10:59 AM
Unfortunately, when people play the race card so automatically and without concrete evidence, it starts to sound like the boy who cried "wolf!", and otherwise decent, fair-minded folks like me tune it out. Plus, when real instances of racism occur, they may get overlooked because we've become desensitized by the false claims.
Wed., 01/04/12 - 10:55 AM
Exactly! Tasco's response defies common sense and the most basic understanding of ethical behavior. I for one believe she really does think she "deserves" this money, perhaps based on her race, gender, government position or some combination of these factors. You can't reason with someone like this, so it's not even worth trying.
Wed., 01/04/12 - 10:48 AM
If anyone still doubts that the race card gets played without objective cause, automatically and in knee-jerk fashion, this article is definitive proof to the contrary. Tasco's response to the DROP question is truly pathetic, and I shudder to think that she holds so much power in Philadelphia government. Yikes!
Daniel Rubin: When kindness is contagious
- 1 out of 11 total comment(s)
Thu., 12/22/11 - 11:04 AM
This story made me cry--it sure does restore one's faith in humanity, doesn't it? And now I'm headed to my local Kmart this afternoon to "pay it forward".
Marc Lamont Hill: Free-Mumia work's not done
- 3 out of 121 total comment(s)
Thu., 12/15/11 - 10:16 AM
With all due respect, Byron, I too hold a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania, and I can assure you that not everyone who gets this degree actually deserves it. I observed things during my graduate years at Penn that are shameful regarding the advanced degrees awarded to certain students, who were clearly there for reasons other than their academic abilities. Judging from Lamont Hill's commentaries over the years, I strongly suspect he fits that description perfectly.
Thu., 12/15/11 - 10:12 AM
True, the First Amendment gives Hill the right to his opinion, but it's both sad and embarrassing to see how illogical and ill-informed that opinion is, based on a clear reading of the facts of this case.
Thu., 12/15/11 - 10:10 AM
LOL! Thanks for providing my laugh for the morning! In all seriousness, though, it's clear Lamont Hill is too blinded by his own prejudices and biases to be able to clearly and logically assess the facts of this case, which seem pretty indisputable to me. Unfortunately, people like Lamont Hill will never be able to acknowledge this, again because they see what they want to see. I also think a previous commenter's observations about Mumia's sociopathic tendencies are spot on, if you read the diagnostic description of sociopathy. These sorts of monsters are quite good at fooling people by appearing friendly, intelligent and engaged, which aptly describes the Lamont Hill-Mumia "friendship".
Kevin Riordan: Dog visits sharpen fading memories
- 1 out of 9 total comment(s)
Thu., 12/15/11 - 09:30 AM
Great story! I can't stand it when people say "But it's just a dog!" They have no idea about the special relationship between humans and dogs, and the enormous comfort, peace of mind and joy dogs bring to their human family members.
Philadelphia school official steps down amid pay allegations
- 1 out of 74 total comment(s)
Fri., 12/09/11 - 11:07 AM
While this doesn't surprise me one bit (although it bothers me greatly on ethical grounds), I just want someone to explain to me what a "confidential secretary" is. This would be good Friday humor if the stakes weren't so terribly high, and if so many district employees weren't being let go.
Ackerman defends collecting unemployment benefits
- 3 out of 116 total comment(s)
Thu., 12/08/11 - 13:10 PM
If you get an EdD in education, then you're right--it's not at all difficult to earn. I have my PhD, and I had to do quantitative research with high-level statistical analysis to get it. I actually worked with someone who said he got an EdD because he knew he couldn't cut it in medical school, yet he wanted to be called "doctor". So be highly suspicious of so-called "doctoral" degrees until you dig a little deeper.
Thu., 12/08/11 - 13:07 PM
Unfortunately, judging by her past record, there are indeed districts who would hire her again. Philly hired her after disastrous tenures in San Francisco and DC. The whole concept of learning from one's mistakes seems entirely lost on some folks, it seems.
Thu., 12/08/11 - 13:00 PM
This is what's so mind boggling to me about the whole Ackerman mess--why on earth would another school district hire someone whose failings have been detailed so publicly and repeatedly? What kind of insanity is that? I too have read some of the San Francisco SD accounts online describing Ackerman's tenure there, and there's simply no way a reasonable human being would ever want to repeat those mistakes again to the tune of $300K+. As I said, mind boggling...
Kevin Riordan: N.J. animal shelter struggling
- 1 out of 25 total comment(s)
Tue., 11/29/11 - 09:30 AM
I just called to make a donation (had to leave a message b/c no one answered, so hopefully someone will get back to me). What a sad situation--these poor animals can't help it that they're no longer wanted. People definitely need to rescue, not buy, pets so that shelters like Almost Home aren't overwhelmed by too much supply and not enough demand.
Monica Yant Kinney: Occupy Philadelphia denizens should go home before their movement loses relevancy
- 2 out of 89 total comment(s)
Thu., 11/17/11 - 10:54 AM
With all due respect, how, specifically, is Occupy "doing a lot more to help people's lives"? How is spreading feces on concrete walls and urinating in public spaces showing the respect you speak of? I don't have a problem with the spirit of the Occupy movement in its frustration with corporate corruption and greed, but the behavior of some of the protesters is defeating the whole purpose and making many Americans dismiss the cause in disgust. Besides, you don't get something for nothing in this life--hard work and personal responsibility have to count for something.
Thu., 11/17/11 - 10:50 AM
Agree 100% I'm still paying the last of my student loans, and I'm better off for having to take some financial ownership of my life choices. What good does forgiving all student loans--or any other no-strings-attached handout--do? It only makes people feel more entitled to something for nothing. That's not how life works. And while I agree in spirit with the protesters' frustration over corporate greed, I hear no logical, practical, feasible solutions coming from the majority of them, which makes me more inclined to just tune out.
Palliative care comes to the emergency department
- 1 out of 3 total comment(s)
Wed., 09/28/11 - 11:25 AM
I agree that it's high time we as a society have an honest discussion about humane end-of-life care when a person's suffering is simply too great, and/or that person is tired of living with a chronic condition that makes life miserable. Deciding when and where to face death should be an individual's choice, not the choice of hospitals or even family members. Why not allow that person the dignity of coming to the end of life on his/her terms?
Phil Goldsmith: Time for SRC members to make a good decision for once & step down
- 1 out of 37 total comment(s)
Fri., 09/16/11 - 11:07 AM
@brinsley, I agree that Helen Gym would be an excellent choice, as she seems very clear headed and practically minded, rather than subject to the political silliness so rampant in Philly. I wonder if she'd even consider, though, considering who she might have to work with, and the nonsense she'd have to endure.
Marc Lamont Hill: Vick gets something rare for ex-cons: A payday after paying debt
- 1 out of 83 total comment(s)
Wed., 08/31/11 - 08:37 AM
I'm not against giving someone a second chance, but my concern is that people who think it's ok to harm animals in the most brutal fashion as Vick did can't just magically change. It's a mentality, something you learn at an early age, and it's not a matter of turning it on or off. Remember that many sociopaths start out by abusing animals because they failed to develop ingrained feelings of empathy or compassion for living things. This is a very serious character flaw, and I'll always be reminded of it when I see Vick play.
IRS asked to review Ackerman bailout charity tax status
- 1 out of 26 total comment(s)
Fri., 08/26/11 - 13:30 PM
Anyone who cries "racism!" here is simply blind to basic logic. Tax fraud is tax fraud, and the IRS cares not one whit about your skin color in that regard.
Elmer Smith: Time for Ackerman to get specific with her accusations
- 3 out of 87 total comment(s)
Fri., 08/26/11 - 11:55 AM
Excellent point. Ackerman is just the latest public face of what's happening throughout our country's cities. It seems like nothing short of a full-scale revolution will uproot this entrenched way of getting things done. Does anyone have the courage and/or political will to make it happen?
Fri., 08/26/11 - 09:47 AM
I don't mean to sound insulting, but it's well known that getting an Ed.D, which is simply a doctorate in education, doesn't require the research rigor and statistical knowledge of a Ph.D (which I myself have). In fact, I overheard one man at my former place of employment explicitly state that he got his Ed.D so he could be called "doctor", since he couldn't cut it in a pre-med curriculum in college. How sad is that?!?!
Fri., 08/26/11 - 09:45 AM
I agree 100%. When people automatically cry "racism!" without fulling considering the facts of the situation (for example, all of the people in power who have bearing on what's happening regarding Ackerman happen to be black), then the word loses force and meaning, and it no longer has the ability to inspire action when true racism is in play. I for one am tired of hearing that word thrown about in such a knee-jerk fashion. It's just like the boy who cried "wolf" once too often.
Letters: Too high a bar for former Philadelphia School Superintendent Arlene Ackerman?
- 1 out of 17 total comment(s)
Fri., 08/26/11 - 10:59 AM
Once again, race is being used to excuse/explain behavior on Ackerman's part that, by any objective measure, wouldn't be tolerated in any other job setting. Ms. Jordan, I'm a reasonable and compassionate person, but I get so sick and tired of seeing race brought into the discussion over and over again when it has nothing to do with the objective facts. Why can't you see past this as well? What is the advantage in continuing to use race in this manner? Does it feel good to constantly see yourself as a victim, entitled to ongoing pity as a result?
Annette John-Hall: A teachable moment from Ackerman's tenure in Philadelphia
- 1 out of 27 total comment(s)
Tue., 08/23/11 - 12:48 PM
Once again, a Philly Inquirer columnist is touting the increased academic performance in district schools as evidence of Ackerman's success, despite the cheating allegations in several schools. Until that gets resolved--if ever--I think it's misleading at best and fraudulent at worst to use rising test scores in this manner.
Marc Lamont Hill: Note to city: This youth curfew is a violation
- 1 out of 246 total comment(s)
Wed., 08/17/11 - 12:43 PM
@reasonableihope, you make an excellent point. Why doesn't this paper include different black perspectives, such as from John McWhorter or Shelby Steele? Why the one-sided same old same old each and every time? Where is the message about personal responsibility and being accountable for one's actions as the expected part of living in a civilized society? I went to graduate school with people like Marc Lamont Hill, and he fits the mold perfectly--making a living out of tired racial arguments using multisyllable words, but when you really listen to those words, they don't fit with basic common sense.
13 schools bear further investigation for cheating; 325 teachers recalled
- 1 out of 82 total comment(s)
Tue., 08/16/11 - 10:10 AM
Doesn't matter if you're white, black brown, purple or green--if you base your entire "success" argument on test scores with a strong suspicion of cheating behind them, you not only deserve to be fired, but you also deserve no financial "reward" for leaving. I'm a statistician, and I can assure you that the odds of so many students changing that many answers from wrong to right is, for all practical purposes, simply impossible. If this were the private sector, Ackerman would've been gone a long time ago. I hope the powers that be in Philly have the courage to do the right thing, even if it's not politically correct or otherwise easy.
Should test scores save Ackerman's job?
- 1 out of 16 total comment(s)
Mon., 08/15/11 - 10:26 AM
The fact that there are widespread cheating allegations renders Ackerman's claim to have seen increased test scores during her tenure completely moot, in my humble opinion. Look what happened in Atlanta--the superintendent there left under a cloud of disgrace when the magnitude of the cheating became publicized, even though she was widely praised at first when test scores rose so dramatically. There are a lot of parallels to the situation in Philly, and the fact that the Inquirer continues to tout these test score increases despite the cheating allegations is irresponsible journalism (not to mention a sign of poor reasoning skills).
Karen Heller: After Ackerman, school district needs a new type of leader
- 1 out of 68 total comment(s)
Wed., 07/27/11 - 13:30 PM
I hate to sound cynical, but I completely agree with pepoole's observation that any person competent enough to do a good job would be run out of town before long, simply because of the kind of resistance he/she would face in making that kind of monumental change to a terribly dysfunctional system. It's shameful that this is the case, yet I don't see how any one person has the power (or stomach) to overcome decades of incompetence and corruption entrenched in the School District, on top of the political strings that come attached. Which means the SDP will continue bringing in new and increasingly expensive replacements in shorter periods of time, and nothing will ever improve. Sad but true, I'm afraid.
John Baer: Don't buy out Ackerman - fire her, state rep says
- 1 out of 128 total comment(s)
Wed., 07/27/11 - 13:01 PM
@Ahmady, you stated that McGeehan's attacks on Ackerman are "unfounded and baseless". What, then, do you make of the current investigation into widespread cheating on the state's standardized test in multiple SDP schools? Or of the fact that Ackerman awarded a no-bid contract at a higher cost to taxpayers based largely, if not completely, on her own racial preferences? Or of the treatment of Asian students at South Phila High, such that the federal government eventually got involved? Or of her hiring a principal at South Phila High without the proper credentials? How can a logical, reasonable person conclude that these examples constitute "unfounded and baseless" attacks? I'm truly dumbfounded.
A model of grace falls far
- 1 out of 23 total comment(s)
Mon., 07/25/11 - 13:52 PM
I find this article offensive because it essentially says that criminal acts are excusable based on skin color and past crimes committed against groups of a particular skin color. If you extend this argument to its logical conclusion, this must mean no person of color should be convicted of a crime since the "mitigating circumstances" (meaning past offenses based on skin color) can never be taken out of the picture. And as for the fact that "white guilt" is such a "rare commodity" these days, as Harold Jackson puts it, is a good thing to me--guilt in and of itself is never a good reason to act because it's such a tangled and complex emotion, and because how does one know when repayment based on guilt is ever complete? Ten thousand dollars? A million dollars? Something more? Things like integrity of character and a sense of justice and fairness to *all* people--regardless of skin color--seem to me to be more appropriate reasons to act on someone's behalf.
Goldsmith: Hit the road, Ack
- 1 out of 22 total comment(s)
Thu., 06/23/11 - 11:34 AM
Objectively speaking, if Ackerman were working in the private sector, she would've been fired long ago. It's puzzling to me why she continues to be given leeway in light of her dismal performance, with the huge budget deficit as the most obvious and serious example.
Kevin Riordan: Marlton dog school trains companions for veterans with PTSD
- 1 out of 6 total comment(s)
Fri., 06/10/11 - 13:12 PM
I especially love the fact that Gunner, a dog rescued from Kensington, is being trained. Odds are strong that this dog is a "pit bull" (which could mean one of several pure breeds or mixes). As the owner of a rescued pit bull mix, I couldn't be happier that this wonderful type of dog has the chance to make good headlines for a change.
A day in the life of CHOP
- 1 out of 13 total comment(s)
Thu., 06/09/11 - 11:51 AM
What an amazing hospital we have in our region! As a UPenn alumna, I'm terribly proud.
Marc Lamont Hill: Black pols vs. pols who are black
- 1 out of 119 total comment(s)
Wed., 05/25/11 - 13:08 PM
I'm a fair-minded white person who is willing to hear all sides and all views about most things in life, but as a pragmatist, I have a serious question for Marc Lamont Hill: What, exactly, needs to happen for you to feel that racial equality between blacks and whites has been achieved in this country? What specific actions/behaviors/policies/events must take place to satisfy you in this regard? What does it mean to support "black policies"? How does this differ from, say, policies supporting the very poor, mostly white region of the South where I grew up--a place with as much grinding poverty and lack of opportunity as any inner city in America? I really don't know what is expected when I hear viewpoints such as Hill's because they generally lack concrete details.
Why are we such pigs? Cleanups, education are failures - we ARE Filthy-delphia
- 2 out of 243 total comment(s)
Mon., 04/18/11 - 12:43 PM
I should add that you have to actively teach kids to care about having a clean neighborhood--make them understand why they should care, starting as young as kindergarten. A previous poster mentioned the old slogan "Give a hoot, don't pollute!", which I remember well from childhood. Something catchy like that, something young kids will remember, is a good teaching tool.
Mon., 04/18/11 - 12:34 PM
I was raised in a poor, mostly white community in the South, and I can tell you that it's definitely a cultural/economic versus racial thing. People would throw everything from trash bags to old appliances in the river, and you'd see diapers hanging from the riverbank trees after a bad flood. It's a matter of not putting a high premium on keeping the neighborhood clean, often because there are other more pressing things to worry about, like not having enough food or dealing with serious health problems. I'm not excusing it, mind you--just trying to provide some perspective.
A laundry list of supporters to defend Ackerman at SRC
- 1 out of 58 total comment(s)
Mon., 12/13/10 - 11:44 AM
My problem is not that Ackerman gave a contract to a minority business per se, as long as that business is fully capable and competent to do the job (and I'm speaking as a fair-minded white person who looks at things in life through a practical lens.) My problem is strictly based on the economics of this situation--namely, that the minority business is charging far more than other companies to do essentially the same work using taxpayer dollars. That, to me, is flat out inappropriate, no matter what color the person who did the hiring. It's wasteful and makes Ackerman look completely out of touch given that many Philadelphians are still struggling to pay the bills.
Inquirer Editorial: Now for the governing
- 1 out of 45 total comment(s)
Wed., 11/03/10 - 09:35 AM
@The Monk, I wholeheartedly agree that a robust Libertarian party would be a fantastic alternative (if only it could get adequately funded, since big money talks loudly in our political system). I'm a registered independent who's sick and tired of both major parties. I'm also a pragmatist who believes that government's role in people's lives should be limited to only certain areas, rather than being shoved down our collective throats at every turn.
Children's Hospital helps develop technique to improve survival from neuroblastoma
- 1 out of 2 total comment(s)
Thu., 09/30/10 - 10:38 AM
Kory, I agree 100%. I went to UPenn for graduate school and was treated at CHOP many years earlier as a toddler for a serious condition, so I'm well aware of what a true treasure these facilities are. But what a heartbreaking thing for a young child to have to endure! I can't even begin to imagine....
Judge: Salem County dog attack that severed ear was "minor"
- 1 out of 12 total comment(s)
Thu., 07/22/10 - 10:22 AM
I hope this is a lesson learned for those who are so quick to condemn pit bull breeds. Any breed of dog has the potential to bite depending on circumstances (including the owner's behavior).
A Main Line animal shelter is 100 years old
- 1 out of 7 total comment(s)
Mon., 09/28/09 - 12:06 PM
My husband and I adopted our beloved pit bull/boxer mix Angel from Francisvale back in May, and we're so thankful that such a place exists! Pathfinder, I'd like to know where you got your information, as these are some pretty serious charges.
PSPCA: 19-year-old confesses to duct-taping cat
- 1 out of 44 total comment(s)
Mon., 09/28/09 - 11:27 AM
This kind of cruelty is just mind boggling--not to mention the fact that the transition from animal abusers to people killers isn't too far of a leap.
SPCA dog raid
- 1 out of 7 total comment(s)
Thu., 09/24/09 - 16:01 PM
This just breaks my heart. I put people who do this to dogs in the same category as child abusers and neglecters--and to me, they deserve the same harsh punishment. The fact that pit bull breeds are among the most even-tempered, people-loving dogs on the planet, makes this even more disgusting.
New Pew Report Looks At City Union Contracts
- 1 out of 6 total comment(s)
Tue., 09/22/09 - 11:25 AM
It seems as if the politician who's willing to make hard decisions at the cost of being re-elected is a dying (or dead) breed. If such a person ever emerges and I'm able to vote for him/her, I'll do so in a heartbeat, and I won't care whether there's an R or D after his/her name.
Phila. report offers 4 ways to repair BRT
- 1 out of 25 total comment(s)
Wed., 09/16/09 - 12:30 PM
jcc1960, as an independent voter, I completely agree with you about the cowardice of the single party system in Philly. It's disgraceful, really, and embarrassing to see how no one wants to take the risks needed to bring competence and effectiveness back to city government because they fear being ostracized by the Democratic machine. I'm all in favor of seeing what a moderate Republican could do in the Mayor's office, but I highly doubt that will ever happen. Sad--very sad....
Stu Bykofsky: Hate mail from Vick lovers
- 1 out of 115 total comment(s)
Thu., 08/20/09 - 11:03 AM
Re. mrssimmons35's comment about pit bulls being vicious animals that will "rip a person's throat out and kill them" if given a chance, you obviously have never owned a bully breed. My dog Angel, who is a mix of American Staffordshire Terrier and Boxer, is the sweetest, most lovable dog around, and she is representative of the breed in general, which is by nature friendly toward humans (seen by the fact that the vast majority of Vick's fighting dogs were able to be rehabilitated). Please read about the breed before passing such harsh judgement.
Letters: The debate over Michael Vick rages on
- 1 out of 15 total comment(s)
Tue., 08/18/09 - 15:38 PM
Here's my concern: While I believe in giving people second chances if they're truly remorseful, allowing animals to be brutalized--not humanely killed, mind you, but electrocuted, shot and drowned--is a deeply ingrained character issue that isn't so easy to just "get over", especially when the roots of this behavior date back to childhood (which, from what I've read, is the case with Vick). I won't be fully convinced that the change is true and permanent until I see Vick championing animal rights issues without the cameras around.
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