October 11, 2014 |
In May 2003, Melina Mazza Waldo went to Washington to lobby Congress as a member of the Philadelphia chapter of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). "I had an encounter on Capitol Hill with a clergyman, who loudly interrupted me and pushed me as I was being interviewed by a reporter," she later wrote in The Inquirer. She said her son, Craig, told her at the time: " 'You're their worst nightmare, Mom!' He explained that the last thing the far right wants people to see is a mother speaking up for her gay child.
October 11, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - They have bold orange lapel pins, their own nickname - "problem solvers" - and even a theme song written by the R&B star Akon. And with a lofty goal of ending congressional gridlock, the bipartisan group No Labels has also sought and won flattering headlines across the country. Locally, U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R., Pa.) has trumpeted his participation. But what No Labels has produced little of in its four-year existence is tangible results. Since the group relaunched with a focus on Congress in 2013, it has laid claim to two meager legislative victories, one of which was watered down and one that recycled an idea first enacted in 2008.
October 5, 2014
A story in some editions Friday about a debate in Moorestown among congressional candidates misstated the role of the League of Women Voters. The group sponsored the event.
October 5, 2014 |
Temple University on Friday announced the creation of a special committee to look into the school's handling of sexual assaults. Universities across the nation are under scrutiny for their policies and practices, and are struggling to respond to mounting pressure from students and the federal government. The University of Pennsylvania recently announced it plans to hire an investigative officer to handle sexual assaults and is reviewing how complaints are handled. Pennsylvania State University said it would create a task force in July.
October 3, 2014
NEW ORLEANS Saints wide receiver Marques Colston is close to joining the ownership group of the Philadelphia Soul. Colston owns the Harrisburg Stampede, a franchise in the Professional Indoor Football League, which is a lower level than the Arena Football League in which the Soul plays. Colston's ownership share in the Soul couldn't be determined. The 31-year-old holds every significant receiving record for the Saints, and was a key player when New Orleans won the Super Bowl following the 2009 season.
October 2, 2014 |
A new report from a trio of activist groups says Pennsylvania charter schools have defrauded taxpayers of more than $30 million because oversight is so lax. The researchers call for a temporary moratorium on new charter schools, contending agencies are not able to adequately monitor the 186 charters that already exist. The study by the Center for Popular Democracy; Integrity in Education; and Action United of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh was to be released Wednesday. The report urges the state Attorney General's Office to review all Pennsylvania charters for potential fraud.
September 25, 2014 |
Joining forces with a Germantown Jewish group and a South Philadelphia Mennonite congregation, the New Sanctuary Movement of Philadelphia says it will openly defy deportation orders by providing refuge for immigrants facing imminent expulsion from the United States. The policy is to take effect with a planned announcement Wednesday in South Philadelphia, said leaders of New Sanctuary, which advocates on behalf of undocumented immigrants. "This is a national issue. We are the local manifestation," said Rabbi Linda Holtzman of the Germantown group, Tikkun Olam Chavurah.
September 21, 2014 |
A federal judge Friday ordered the immediate deportation of an Afghan doctor who prosecutors said passed coded messages to a terrorist group with ties to al-Qaeda. U.S. District Judge Stewart Dalzell made the order after Hayatullah Dawari, 62, of Northeast Philadelphia, pleaded guilty to two counts of immigration fraud and admitted that he lied on his application for U.S. citizenship. Dalzell sentenced Dawari to two years in prison, but suspended the sentence and ordered that he be immediately deported.
September 18, 2014 |
BACK IN THE early '60s, Mike "Teardrops" Silenzio needed a lead singer for the doo-wop group he was putting together. Mike attended South Philadelphia High School and he was chums with Fabian Forte, Chubby Checker, Bobby Rydell and other kids who would go on to stellar singing careers, and he knew what he was looking for. His group, the Masters, consisted of Mike himself as second tenor, baritone Rich Finizio, his cousin Frank "Tweetie" Condo...
September 16, 2014
Internet freedom activists are holding a rally Monday outside the Comcast Center in Philadelphia to protest Comcast's proposed merger with Time Warner Cable. The rally, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at 1701 John F. Kennedy Blvd, is organized by Free Press, a nonpartisan group that advocates to preserve open Internet communication and free speech. The group is demanding protections for net neutrality, and the rally will urge the Federal Communications Commission to adopt rules that prevent broadband providers like Comcast and Verizon from discriminating against online content and services.