Loan Repayment: Obama vs. Romney

http://www.barackobama.com/education-calculator

I ran across this page on barackobama.com and found it very interesting. Though I cannot say that it is totally true, I have read quite a bit on the student loan repayment programs under the Obama Administration. I also know several people who are currently utilizing these resources and are having good experiences (well as good as you can owing and paying off debt). I also know that Romney’s future plans (if he is elected) involve cuts in many areas and this would be one…so while I am not sure how extreme the differences would be if we did not continue the Direct Loan system and payback program options ( or begin the new ones scheduled for (2013-2014) I do know that there would be some differences that I am sure would yield some negative consequences on those like myself who are looking forward to using one of the current or new programs, and those who are already utilizing them! Feel free to leave your thoughts on this!

 

More Education Cuts

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/08/obama-urges-congress-to-help-put-teachers-back-to-work/

 

Quick Jobs Report

I read this about a week ago on The American Prospect and thought it would be interesting and appropriate for sharing:

A STRONG JOBS REPORT

Beating expectations, 163,000 jobs were added to the U.S. economy in July, according to the monthly report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The growth was far above the median estimate of 108,000 among experts surveyed by Dow Jones—on par with Wednesday’s report by payroll company ADP—and more than 75 percent higher than the 90,000 jobs per month required to keep up with economic growth. It’s also double the number added in June, breaking with a downward trend that’s persisted since January. Unsurprisingly, stock futures rose in the minutes after the report’s release. But the unemployment rate ticked slightly upward to 8.3 percent, and future employment situation reports will have to be much stronger in order to bring it down.

The “New” Civil Rights Struggles

Surely by now most people have heard about the comments of Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy,  strongly opposing same-sex marriage and the correlation between his beliefs and the company’s mission and practices. From this, there have been several protests, calls for political action, and an ongoing debate about the freedom of speech, especially regarding a private corporation. In the online news story below from none other than Foxnews.com (because we “so” adore their media portrayal and news coverage…) is an explanation along with commentary and information regarding today’s “Chick fil-A Appreciation Day” and its abundance of supporters & protestors across the country. The content of the article itself is not all that fascinating to me, as I am already a bit underwhelmed by the amount of attention being drawn to this issue..but wait, it is an election year isn’t it?…so fast forward with me if you will to one particular part of the a story that I did actually find interesting.

Comments from a Rev. William Owens of the Coalition of African-American Pastors who compared the stance that many are taking on not wanting these restaurants in their city with his experiences in civil rights marches for racial equality. This immediately took me back to a conversation I had with a good friend of mine about the intersection (or comparison) between issues racial equality and issues of equality from the LGBT & Ally community. It was not until I read this online news story, and particularly the comments about the “disgrace of some people’s viewpoints” and how it is similar to those who ” did not want a  black to come into their restaurant” that I really began to think about this conversation and civil rights issues in America today. My utter irritation does not come from the thoughts of those who oppose practices of discrimination and pejorative treatment to members or supporters of the LGBT community, instead in stems from the issues that leaders of the Black/African-American community choose to speak up about and become involved in…I could spout out a long list of problems that to date remain central to the equality of Black people in this country, and how they will continue to impact us in the future without activism…but it seems that we have moved so far beyond the “old school” struggles and have embarked upon a new set of issues facing “contemporary society”.

Furthermore, the Black church has been a long-standing leader on community involvement/development/ and social action for many years; at this time, we need more of this strong commentary and speaking out on issues of racial equality, and in order for this to occur we need our church leaders to (dare I say it) look beyond their bibles and pay more attention to our communities and their needs. It is very strange to think that church officials and leaders can adamantly speak out against homosexuality in sermons, bible studies, church meetings etc. (even though it is an issue that deeply affects the Black Community), but are not giving the same thought, focus, attention, or passion to everyday issues of racial inequality and injustice that have a wide variety of negative effects on black communities and people (such as education, social, political, economical, etc.). Though I do believe that technology and a changing society and nation have brought about different social concerns and various issues of equality that should be addressed we need to start by addressing them within our communities first…

ChickfilA Appreciation Day brings out supporters, protesters

By

Published August 01, 2012

FoxNews.com

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It used to be that taking a bite of a chicken sandwich just meant you were hungry. Now it has become a symbol of whether you stand for or against same-sex marriage, or – alternately – the right to express your personal views without fear of retaliation.

At Chick-fil-A locations across the country, people voted with their wallets today, coming out to express support for the fast-food chain after CEO Dan Cathy said in an interview that he is a firm backer of traditional marriage.

“I believe what the Bible says (about marriage),” Chauncy Fields told us after wolfing down a breakfast of chicken and biscuits.  “So I came out here to support Chick-fil-A and the movement.”

Chris Johnson sees a double standard. “He (Dan Cathy) said the exact same thing that President Obama said,” Johnson told Fox News — referring to the president’s past opposition to gay marriage – “And he gets negativity, and Obama gets positivity.”

At one Atlanta location, the restaurant was packed, while the line for the drive-thru looped twice around the building and out into the street.

The backlash across the country against Chick-fil-A has been ferocious. After the mayors of Chicago and Boston heaped scorn upon the company, the mayor of Washington, DC, suggested it was peddling “hate chicken.”

Those comments drew a sharp response from Rev. William Owens of the Coalition of African American Pastors. “Some people are saying that because of the position that Chick-fil-A is taking, they don’t want them in their cities. It is a disgrace. It is the same thing that happened when I was marching for civil rights, when they didn’t want a black to come into their restaurant,” he told a press conference in Washington, DC.

The Chick-fil-A firestorm has taken on different meanings for different people. For some, it harks to the days of intolerance and segregation. For others, it is about religious views of marriage. But for most people who Fox News spoke to today, it is about free speech.

“I think it comes down to a First Amendment issue. I mean, I do believe in the traditional values of marriage between a man and a woman,” youth pastor Stephen Lenahan told Fox News after a leisurely breakfast with three members of his ministry. He is also puzzled as to why Dan Cathy is such a target, when other corporate CEOs who openly support same-sex marriage are not similarly criticized by conservatives.

Lenahan says he sees a bigger issue at work here. “There is kind of a culture war going on and people aren’t really respecting each other and difference of opinion.  There’s no dialogue taking place to get to the heart of what we really believe as a nation and what is truth.”

Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day – as it is being called was the idea of former Arkansas governor and Fox News contributor Mike Huckabee. But as protests against Chick-fil-A swelled across the country, dozens of groups and prominent individuals joined in support of the company.

Among the groups is Project 21, a black conservative activist organization. One of its members, Demetrios Minor, said critics of Dan Cathy have taken his statements completely out of context.  “I think liberals are missing a vital point in their blind hatred of Chick-fil-A,” Minor said in a statement sent to Fox News. “Being against gay marriage is not being anti-gay.”

Crtitics of Chick-fil-A argue that the company’s opposition to gay marriage goes well beyond Dan Cathy’s statements. Over the years, its philanthropic wing, WinShape, has donated millions of dollars to outside organizations that actively lobby against efforts to legalize same-sex marriage.

On Friday, supporters of same-sex marriage will have their say. They plan a “kiss-in” at Chick-fil-A restaurants across the country – encouraging gays and lesbians to share a public display of affection at the home of the chicken sandwich.

COMPANY FACTS
Chick-fil-A is a family owned and operated company.
It has 1,615 stores in 39 states
2011 sales were $4.1 billion.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/08/01/chick-fil-appreciation-day-brings-out-supporters-more-protestors/#ixzz22KTcGQzH