Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Joseph O. Patton: Give 'em hell, Patricia Todd!

  “I never did give them hell. I just told the truth, and they thought it was hell." -Harry S. Truman

  This week Alabama Representative Patricia Todd (District 54) threw down a gauntlet the size of the Statehouse. Fed up with the hypocrisy, the bullying and the outright lack of humanity from her colleagues, she threatened to out state officials who are engaging in or have engaged in extramarital affairs.

  Todd's righteous anger bubbled over as a result of the venomous, bigoted outcry from top Alabama politicians in response to U.S. District Judge Callie Granade's ruling which struck down Alabama's despicably discriminatory Marriage Protection Act and its related Alabama Constitutional Amendment.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Steve Flowers: Inside the Statehouse: Caught in a perpetual budget crunch

  The most pressing problem facing the governor and legislature as they enter this new quadrennium is the financial shortfall in the General Fund Budget.

  Last year the governor floated a trial balloon to see if there was any traction to combine the two state budgets in order to give more wiggle room in the budgeting of limited state dollars. It was quickly shot down.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Joseph O. Patton: Montgomery should pass on Artur Davis

  Just when I foolishly believed I had washed the foul political aftertaste of Artur Davis out of my mouth, he's uncorking another bottle of his trademark bitterness, shameless opportunism and ego-tripping.

  Last week he announced he's running for mayor of Montgomery, challenging incumbent Todd Strange who announced his reelection bid the same day. But which version of Artur Davis this happens to be would be anyone's guess, though....

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Decision overturning Alabama’s same-sex marriage ban a victory for families, children of same-sex couples

  A federal judge’s ruling striking down Alabama’s same-sex marriage ban as unconstitutional will provide greater stability to the lives of same-sex couples and their children, but more work remains to eliminate anti-LGBT discrimination in the state, the Southern Poverty Law Center announced yesterday.

  The judge in Mobile, Alabama, issued the ruling Friday in a case brought by two women seeking to have their marriage from California recognized. Cari Searcy and Kim McKeand needed the recognition so that both women could be recognized as legal parents of the child they conceived with the help of a sperm donor.

Friday, January 23, 2015

James Phillips: ISIS vs. Al Qaeda: The good news and the bad news

  The Islamic State, formerly known as ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), has become a bitter rival of Al Qaeda, its parent organization. Its leaders represent a new generation of Islamist militants who have broken with Al Qaeda in a power struggle over Syria and the future of the global Islamist revolution.

  Both groups share the same ultimate goal: the establishment of a global caliphate, to be ruled under a harsh brand of sharia (Islamic law). But they clash over what strategy and tactics are best, as well as who should lead the global jihad (holy war) to build the caliphate.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Hank Sanders: Senate Sketches #1441: Praying that the Promised Land is still ahead

  “I just want to do God’s will. He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over. And I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land.” These are the prophetic words from the last speech Dr. Martin Luther King uttered in Memphis on April 3, 1968. He was shot down the very next day.

  There is no doubt in my mind Dr. King knew that death was very imminent; that he knew he was going to die in the next few days. It was in his words. It was in his spirit. We can feel it when we listen to that last speech. We can see it in his face and body language.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Charles C. Haynes: For religious freedom and LGBT rights, a year of decision

  The New Year begins much like the old year ended with bitter, emotional clashes between proponents of LGBT rights and religious objectors to same-sex marriage.

  When same-sex weddings commenced in Florida on January 6, several county clerks immediately announced that although required by law to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, they will no longer perform marriages for anyone – gay or straight – to avoid participating in same-sex ceremonies.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Steve Flowers: Inside the Statehouse: Looking ahead to 2018

  Dr. Robert Bentley was inaugurated Monday as our governor for the second time. He and his lovely wife Diane are good people. When you get to be my age, four years goes by in a hurry. It seems like only yesterday that Governor Bentley was enjoying his first inauguration.

  I recall walking down Dexter Avenue toward my perch as a commentator for one of the Montgomery television stations when I stopped and visited briefly with Governor Bentley and Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey, then ran into a host of Shelby County folks.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Morris Dees: MLK’s words just as relevant today

  This Martin Luther King Day is a special one. We're on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Selma-to-Montgomery March, perhaps King's most triumphant moment, and the film Selma has brought him vividly to life.

  Dr. King's speech at the conclusion of the march is remembered for its soaring rhetoric, for King's declaration that segregation was on its deathbed and for his unshakable belief that the moral arc of the universe bends toward justice.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Don Terry: White genocide billboard comes down in Alabama town

  The small city of Springville, Ala., got an early Martin Luther King Jr. Day present this week.

  On Wednesday, an anti-diversity billboard, apparently paid for by a group of anonymous segregationists calling themselves the White Genocide Project, was removed just five days after it went went up along I-59.

  Before it was taken down and rolled up, the sign declared, “Diversity Means Chasing Down the Last White Person” with “#white genocide” on the bottom.