March 23, 2015 |
On the epic finale of Empire , record mogul Lucious Lyon announced that performers - including Patti LaBelle, Rita Ora, and Snoop Dogg - would donate a percentage of their fees from a benefit concert to Black Lives Matter. It was another example of how - in the shadow of the deaths of unarmed black men at the hands of police officers, particularly in Ferguson, Mo., and Staten Island, N.Y. - current events have seeped into prime time. Television shows often exist in a world in which current events rarely have an effect on the plots.
March 6, 2015 |
Benjamin Netanyahu did a disservice to the U.S.-Israel alliance and the goal of preventing an Iranian bomb by his political grandstanding before Congress this week. If his real goal was to prevent Tehran from getting nukes (and not just to boost his reelection odds or trash President Obama), then he undercut it. Let me count the ways. First: By accepting a Republican invitation to address Congress issued behind Obama's back, the Israeli premier transformed a serious issue into a partisan slugfest.
March 4, 2015 |
The name Margaret Cho instantly brings to mind hot-button political activism and outrageous first-person humor, things you'll find in equal measure during her shows at Helium Comedy Club on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. Whether as comedian, actress or author, Cho covers racism, feminism, abuse, LGBT empowerment, sexual liberation, corporate interference, bullying, and more. Her current stage show is titled "There's No 'I' in Team, but there is a 'Cho' in Psycho". She also has had a late-night talk show, All About Sex , which recently completed its first six-episode season on TLC, and documentaries such as Adventures in Comedy . Cho, 42, is still as passionate about stand-up comedy as she was when she first gained national attention in the early '90s for her frank takes on being young, bold, and Korean American.
March 2, 2015 |
For years, Philadelphia fretted about the "brain drain" - college students leaving town as soon as their education ended. That trend has been reversed with millennials - those aged 20 to 34 - now representing the largest group of city residents. Millennials are everywhere - except at polling places on Election Day. The candidates for mayor know that and are trying to solve a political puzzle vexing campaigns across the country: How to get millennial voters, who previously have shown up in force only for historic events such as President Obama's 2008 election, to pay attention to local campaigns?
February 17, 2015 |
Education may well be the issue that gets Philadelphia's next mayor elected. That fact is not lost on Stephanie Conaghan, a kindergarten teacher at Ziegler Elementary, a public school in Oxford Circle. So for the last several months, in addition to teaching 30 children, she's been learning about politics: volunteering at phone banks, signing her colleagues up to canvass neighborhoods for candidates she believes support education, and distributing voter-registration forms to parents.
February 14, 2015 |
The Germantown YWCA is nearing its 100th birthday, and the old gal isn't doing so well. The windows of the stately Georgian Revival residence hotel on Germantown Avenue are covered with plywood. Having suffered two fires, her brick walls are a bit wobbly, and there's a hole in the roof. Some would gladly put her out of her misery right now. But without the YWCA, Germantown wouldn't be Germantown. Though the YWCA is fondly remembered as a neighborhood hub, the place where everyone in Germantown learned to swim, it didn't get made a national landmark, or listed on the city and national historic registers, just for having a commodious pool.
February 11, 2015 |
When Clearview Regional High School teacher Jenna Scott informed her students that U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R., N.J.) was coming to their Advanced Placement government and politics class, she told them to do their research and ask about something more than his life. They did, questioning the congressman on Monday on a variety of issues, including the plight of Atlantic City, the implications of the Patriot Act, and the future of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp for terror suspects.
February 9, 2015 |
BY DAY, RODNEY Oglesby represents the interests of the Philadelphia School District in Harrisburg and City Hall as government affairs director. By night, he's raising money as head of a political action committee with strong ties to the charter school movement. Oglesby's employer sees no conflict between the roles. "His activity with the PAC is in line with the [district] policy and what is allowed in the policy," district spokesman Fernando Gallard said yesterday, citing Section 315 of the district's employment policy which "recognizes and encourages the right of its employees as citizens to engage in political activity.
January 27, 2015 |
Eddie Campbell's four tours of duty as a Marine in Korea and Vietnam helped prepare him for the battles that confronted him in Willingboro nearly 30 years later. But there were still a few ambushes. Campbell became a councilman in the predominantly black suburb in 1998 and had to tackle the fallout from white flight, shrinking tax revenue, and spiraling foreclosures. He was first appointed to the governing body after his wife, Doreatha, died of cancer while serving as mayor of their adopted hometown.
January 20, 2015 |
In a typical year, last week's announcement that Montgomery County Commissioner Leslie Richards would leave to become the state's next transportation secretary would qualify as a political bombshell. But 2015 is shaping up as anything but typical. Richards' departure brings the number of high-level elected vacancies in Montgomery to seven, unleashing a political feeding frenzy as dozens of prospective candidates swarm for the chance to run for commissioner, district attorney, judgeships, and row offices.