March 20, 2015 |
As I drove into the parking lot of Roberto Clemente Middle School in North Philadelphia to start my cooking classes there, my competition was staring me in the face: a giant Burger King sign. The restaurant is not even a minute's walk from the school. Trying to convince kids to cook healthy meals in a fast-food world is hard enough. But with Whoppers wooing them across the parking lot? There ought to be a law! If I needed confirmation that these students, like so many other American middle schoolers, were eating this junk, I got that pretty quickly: My five eighth-grade girls answered a questionnaire about what they eat for dinner and how often they eat fast food.
May 23, 2014 |
MAYBE THEY SHOULD call it a "Democratic disunity" meeting? York County businessman Tom Wolf will sit down for breakfast at the Oregon Diner in South Philly tomorrow morning with the three candidates he easily defeated in Tuesday's Democratic primary election for governor. U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, the city's Democratic Party chairman, asked the candidates last week to attend a "unity" meeting after the primary. They all agreed. But former Gov. Ed Rendell, who is also attending, predicts no "kissing and hugging" after the nasty primary campaign among Wolf, U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz and state Treasurer Rob McCord.
March 13, 2014
Roots of renewal While appreciative of Inquirer coverage of the Mount Airy section of Philadelphia, as former long-time residents and civic activists there we can assure readers that revitalization efforts along Germantown Avenue have been in progress even longer than reported ("A warm welcome," March 2). As far back as 1979, a city-sponsored study of the needs along this part of the avenue by Johnson/Smith Architects was followed up by new street lighting, improvements to certain buildings, additional street trees, and major repairs to the avenue itself - all with the cooperation of the adjacent civic associations, including East and West Mount Airy Neighbors.
March 3, 2014 |
In the seemingly genteel world of food charity, hunger-relief advocates are perceived as big-hearted humanitarians all rowing in the same direction. But lately, as need increases while food supplies contract, people more accustomed to fighting hunger now battle among themselves - do-gooder vs. do-gooder. What's developing locally is a noisy quarrel between two altruistic camps: those who help the hungry in Chester County, and the hunger-relief behemoth, Philabundance, based in South Philadelphia and serving nine counties in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
November 3, 2012 |
It's so tempting, I know. Costumes, masks, pranks, pop-culture sight gags, strange people coming to the door, eating jokes - Halloween just seems like an occasion designed for sitcoms. The episodes practically write themselves, don't they? Well, no. Halloween is actually like a theme-park tar pit for TV comedies. Every year, ignoring the danger, half the herd charges into the same trap - with the same tragic results. This year was the saddest in memory. The better half of Ben and Kate rigged up a costume that was part judicial robe/part baseball uniform to go as Babe Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
October 11, 2012 |
Adapted from a recent online discussion. Question: My husband and I fight about food, constantly. I grew up with fresh food. He grew up with chips and a candy bar as an integral part of every meal. It wasn't a big deal when we first got together, but I've since changed a lot (vegetarian, but I'll cook meat for him), and he believes he's the one making all of the compromises. That's true, but since they're for health reasons, I think he should do it and stick around another 50 to 70 years.
August 30, 2012
By Khadijah White U.S. District Judge William Yohn's recent ruling against Philadelphia's ban on outdoor feeding of the homeless pleased me both philosophically and personally - personally because I had spent a night in jail after questioning police officers who were preventing opponents of the ban from participating in a public hearing. The case against me was dropped shortly after Yohn's ruling. The city's outdoor feeding ban was part of a much larger legislative legacy of the Occupy movement in cities nationwide.
August 9, 2012 |
Philip Dukes had a number of important jobs in the Philadelphia prison system, but the one that probably gave him the most satisfaction was running the work-release program. As its director, Phil would find jobs for prisoners to fulfill the program's philosophy that if inmates could find meaningful work, it would help turn their lives around. And there's no doubt that many of the inmates whom Philip helped over the 10 years he had the job did find through work a way out of the troubles that got them locked up in the first place.
June 22, 2012 |
THE BUDGET SCUFFLE between Mayor Nutter and City Council has moved to Harrisburg, where sources say the two sides are pushing for different legislative relief measures. The city's elected officials have been dueling for weeks over Nutter's proposal to move the city to a property-tax system based on market values, known as the Actual Value Initiative (AVI). Last week, Council overlooked Nutter's objections and gave preliminary approval to a plan delaying AVI for another year. Since then, sources say, Nutter and Council seem on different tracks in Harrisburg.