The Common Good

The Top 10 Stories of June 25, 2013

Quote of the day.
“Rather than having ended the racial class system, we have simply revised it by targeting black men through the war on drugs and decimated communities of color in the United States. … I believe a movement will emerge in the United States, and the question is will people of faith be leaders or will they be on the sidelines waiting for others.” Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow, speaking to the American Baptist Churches USA national meeting on a budding movement to end mass incarceration.
(Associated Baptist Press)

1. BREAKING NEWS: Supreme Court strikes down key part of Voting Rights Act.
In a major blow to civil rights activists, the Supreme Court on Tuesday struck down an important part of a 48-year-old federal law designed to protect minority voters.
(Reuters) See also (Associated Press)

2. Senate vote on border gives push to immigration overhaul.
The bipartisan push to overhaul the nation’s immigration laws took a major step forward Monday evening when the Senate endorsed a proposal to substantially bolster security along the nation’s southern borders as part of a measure that would provide a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants already in the country.
(New York Times)

3. Russia rejects U.S. demand for Snowden''s extradition.
Russia''s foreign minister bluntly rejected U.S. demands to extradite National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden, saying Tuesday that Snowden hasn''t crossed the Russian border.
(Associated Press)

4. Texas senate set for filibuster finale on abortion.
A sweeping bill that would effectively shut down most abortion clinics across the nation''s second most-populous state has stalled in the Texas Senate, and a Democratic filibuster that will only need to last a seemingly manageable 13 hours Tuesday looks like it will be enough to talk the hotly contested measure to death.
(Associated Press)

5. Daniel Werfel: IRS kept using bad criteria.
The IRS continued to use “inappropriate and questionable criteria” to flag groups seeking a tax exemption even after the tea-party targeting scandal came to light, the agency’s new leader said Monday.
(Politico)

6. Charter schools offer scant edge over neighborhood schools.
Charter schools across the United States have improved in recent years, but on average, they still offer little advantage over traditional public education, according to a new study released on Tuesday.
(Chicago Tribune/Reuters)

7. U.S. remains committed to peace talks with Taliban.
The United States and Afghanistan are still waiting to hear from the Taliban about opening peace talks, but remain willing to go ahead with negotiations despite a stir the militant group caused in opening a new office in Qatar, the main American envoy trying to spearhead the process said Monday.
(Guardian)

8. Brazil leader Dilma Rousseff promises reform referendum.
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has proposed a referendum on political reforms in an effort to tackle protests that have swept the country. She also promised to boost spending on public transport and focus on health and education as part of what she called "five pacts" with the people.
(BBC)

9. Musharraf may face death penalty as Pakistan’s Sharif vows treason trial.
Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced Monday that his government would prosecute former military dictator Gen. Pervez Musharraf on a charge of high treason, which, if he’s convicted, carries an automatic death sentence. 
(McClatchy News)

10. Girls and migration: best practice for a growing trend.
Adolescent girls in developing countries are migrating to cities in large numbers. Effective policies and programs to build girls'' skills, knowledge, and social networks are needed to ensure that if and when they migrate, their moves are voluntary, safe, and productive and their rights are protected.
(Guardian)

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