These are not problems that can be glibly dismissed with a few well-chosen words, as most politicians are inclined to do. Nor will the 2016 elections do much to alter our present course towards a police state.
If the political pundits would look around, they would even discover a significant number of prominent U.S. democratic socialists at work in a variety of fields. These and many other democratic socialists, among them Bernie Sanders, have played an important role in American life.
Whenever empire responds to radical change, the response is always brutal. As our nation continues to bear witness to gross atrocities committed against Black bodies and Black minds, it is clear that our nation is witnessing the brutalities that accompany the striking back of an empire.
Minoru Yasui has been posthumously recognized with the Martin Luther King Jr. Business Award in Denver, Colorado, "celebrating content of character."
Reasonable people agree that teachers should know the content of the subject matter they teach -- history, math, literature -- whatever it is. But should they have a good understanding of how children learn?
The New Yorker magazine just tried to destroy Henry David Thoreau in an article by recently hired Kathryn Schulz. Her only book is Being Wrong and this article adds to her authority on that subject considerably.
Now connect the dots, from the 2009 Extremism reports to the NDAA and the UN's Strong Cities Network with its globalized police forces, the National Security Agency's far-reaching surveillance networks, and fusion centers that collect and share surveillance data between local, state and federal police agencies.
How revealing that the perpetrators of mass surveillance violating the Fourth Amendment -- from Cheney on down -- don't have to deal with the "traitor" question. That in CNN debates, in the mass media, this grand stigma -- traitor -- is reserved only for whistleblowers.
To describe this darkest hour in our nation's history as simply being based on a racist hatred of people of African descent is to miss the complexity of the transatlantic slave trade and the work of enslaved Africans in America.
Leaving a legacy is a vital archetype in our culture. When we think of the men and woman who have changed the course of history by living their highest purposes, it is their legacies that we are recalling.
But Davis' official actions are the issue for Americans not her personal religious convictions. The latter allow her to freely worship in a church that does not permit same sex couples to take part in its wedding traditions. Her public role does not allow her to act contrary to the law.
When Pope Francis appeared on the Capitol balcony, one could not help but notice that the Congressional leadership that surrounded him, included Catholics of German, Italian, Irish, Lithuanian, and Hispanic descent. Despite the rejection and adversity faced by their ancestors, all had risen to high elected office.
In all the speculation leading to Pope Francis's address to the Joint Session of Congress, few expected to hear a sweeping reminder of four exceptional American visionaries -- noting less than a spiritual Mount Rushmore.
Sanders has shown since Netroots Nation that he understands that reality by addressing both areas where race and class intersect, as well as those where racial injustice inflicts harm irrespective of class.
We can hope that Pope Francis will receive a warmer reception from Congress, but, things could slide sideways rather quickly if he practices his usual habit of speaking truth to pride, power and prosperity.
Violence or civil disobedience? That has been the perennial question facing the Civil Rights movement, which has evolved into the "Black Lives Matter" crusade. From Gandhi to Martin Luther King, Jr., civil disobedience has been a powerful weapon in spearheading needed social progress.