President Joe Biden’s expected announcement Wednesday that he will begin removing all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the end of the month and complete the withdrawal by Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of the terror attacks that provoked the war, will finally bring to a close direct American military involvement there.
The pandemic has shone a bright light on the need for expanded rural broadband, and I’m grateful that more than $140 million in state and federal funding has been awarded to a Fortune 100 cable provider and others in the state to connect unserved and underserved rural residents in North Carolina. As this grant funding, which was announced in December, creates a new market for broadband providers in rural communities, we must reject efforts by for-profit special interests that would lead to higher costs for North Carolina’s rural consumers.
Virginia just became the first state in the South to abolish the death penalty, significant because Virginia was the first colony to execute someone in 1608 and second only to Texas in the total number of executions.
It’s been almost four years since North Carolina’s Republican legislative leaders capitulated to global economic pressure and effectively admitted the error of their ways by agreeing to repeal the infamous anti-transgender law known as House Bill 2.
The Ever Given had been stuck in Suez sand for nearly a week when my neighbor asked if we were sure the giant container ship hadn’t been sabotaged. It seemed too globally consequential to have been caused by accident, he thought. That it was ultimately freed by a lucky alignment of sun and moon didn’t instill confidence in the global order on which we all rely.
Last May 25, George Floyd stopped being just a man and became a symbol. Suddenly he was no longer an ordinary Black guy enjoying a holiday evening in Minneapolis. He became a representative of all Black Americans whose lives have been disrupted or destroyed by our less-than-evenhanded criminal justice system. His death became the one that was one too many.
Joe Biden’s surprisingly progressive presidency looks more like Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson than his more recent Democratic predecessors – Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.