Good News from Professional Sports

In the last few months many of us who enjoy professional sports have been disappointed in the behavior and ethics of players, team owners, and league officials. All seemed to disregard the interest of women, Native Americans, and anyone who thinks that public figures have a responsibility to model ethical behavior. But this week fans can enjoy a couple of high points in professional sports.

The San Antonio Spurs named Becky Hammon an assistant coach, making her the first female paid by an NBA team to be an assistant. Coach Gregg Popovich announced –

“I very much look forward to …read more

What Does the NFL Care About?

English: Baltimore Ravens Training Camp August 20, 2009 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Controversy surrounds the National Football League – specifically Ray Rice’s 2-game suspension for assaulting his now wife, Janay Palmer Rice.

Baltimore Ravens’ Ray Rice has been issued a 2-game suspension for domestic abuse, or violation of the NFL’s “personal conduct policy.” Given the controversy around this very public, very ugly assault, fans and critics alike are outraged by the seemingly light sentence, especially in light of the inconsistency in other personal conduct charges:

4 Game Suspension for Plaxico Burress, who shot himself in the leg with a concealed …read more

Limiting Women’s Healthcare Access for the Sake of Corporations’ Religious Freedom?

Monday’s Supreme Court ruling that closely held corporations cannot be required to provide contraception coverage for their employees under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) spurs controversy and concern for the future as it pertains to women’s access to healthcare services.

English: Picture Of Ortho Tri-Cyclen oral contraceptives with Ortho Dialpak dispensers (photo taken by self). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The ACA requires employers to cover the full range of contraception in their health care plans at no cost to their female employees with exemptions for churches and accommodations for religious hospitals, schools and non-profits. Last week’s ruling asserts that requiring …read more

Thresholds that can’t be crossed, enhancing mobility in the age of technology

Dexphone is a holder that frees your hands for conversations on the go

About a month ago I got into a bike accident and sprained my wrist. For several weeks I kept it bandaged and couldn’t do everyday activities in the manner I was used to. Opening doors, lifting objects, making meals, even typing were all made difficult or impossible.

My hurdles were offset by the fact that my sprained wrist:

Reassuring my mom that my wrist will be just fine

Was only temporary Didn’t affect my mobility

Millions in this country do not have the luxury of recovery and unaffected mobility. They were born with spinal issues, met with grievous accidents …read more

The Value of Violence, The Price of Poverty

Cover Credit: Edmund Guy

Which violence is most valuable? Defined as injurious force against another, violence is heinous, traumatizing, and entertaining. Its gripping nature strangles our focus as fear floods the media tides. A universal taboo, the nature of violence and its victims can determine the level of coverage casted. At 2,455 murders (234 here in Baltimore), 2013 marked a significant low for homicide in America’s largest and most historically violent cities. This is 2,455 too many. America has a higher homicide rate than nearly every “developed” country. The majority of murders occur in low-income areas.

Poverty fuels daily …read more

Rebranding Racism

Dan Snyder, Owner and Chairman of the Washington Redskins, recently released a statement reaffirming use of his team’s racist icon. Snyder’s subtext rebrands racism. Through sly advertising, it sprinkles shiny empathy on soiled ignorance. Instead of addressing the logo as the epitome of structural exclusions faced by Natives, he portrays his organization as a means for their salvation. When describing his creation of the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation, Snyder writes:

“The mission of the Original Americans Foundation is to provide meaningful and measurable resources that provide genuine opportunities for Tribal communities. With open arms and determined minds, we will …read more

HAPPY SPRING EQINOX

The first day of spring this year is March 20…today! As the climate changes and traditions change, what does it mean for you? Is it something in nature, is it the thought of baseball opening day, or just the hope of putting the winter coat away? The traditional signs of the beginning of spring are changing with the warming climate. Many of the birds no longer migrate from the northern parts of the United States due to the warming climate and the crocuses appear earlier in many parts of the country.

Others consider the beginning of spring training as …read more

Calling for an End to Smartphone Theft

(Photo credit: West Midlands Police)

If you’ve ever been a victim of phone theft you know how scary, frustrating and expensive it can be. Not only have you lost what can be a costly device, but a lot of personal information and account access is now in the hands of strangers to do with what they like. In 2012, 1.6 million people in the US were victims of smartphone theft. Wouldn’t it be great if you could disable your phone when it was lost or stolen so that your phone became basically useless?

Well you are in luck. Enter …read more

Calculation or Simulation, Equality or the Matrix?

A friend recently brought a mind-boggling article to my attention. The article, “Is the Universe a Simulation?” makes the case that we’re likely living in a world created by a “highly advanced computer programmer of the future”. This is based on the invariability of mathematical truths – the codes by which our world is said to have been programmed. The article references Nick Bostrom, an Oxford Philosopher who believes that if simulations exist in theory, “then eventually humans will create them”.

Perhaps the only possible simulation is the organic world, for the built environment shows our ability to simulate worlds …read more

AmalgamNation

Though rife with hardship, America’s history has nonetheless produced rich diversity. The pre-Columbus indigenous population was in the millions, millions of Europeans immigrated to the colonies, and over a half-million African slaves were brought to the colonies. Add more immigrants, a couple hundred years, spice it up with our nature to discriminate less in the bedroom, and boom – there’s a slim chance of bland DNA. After all, only .1% of our DNA determines the artificial notion of race. How perplexing that .1% can lead vanity to discrimination. On the other hand, varying genetic features excite us and produce multiracial …read more