Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Todd Bozeman

Embattled Morgan State University Head Coach Todd Bozeman has had a long road back to redemption. Once the golden boy who was the youngest coach ever to lead his team to a sweet sixteen appearance he had a mighty fall from grace after admitting to paying a player's parents. After years away from basketball he has come to Morgan State and rebuilt not only the basketball program but his character as well.

Todd Bozeman  by  Ray Baker

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Evan Bayh

Senator Evan Bayh has decided not to seek re-election. We look at just what that means for his constituents and those progressives who have supported him.

Evan Bayh- Commentary by Ray Baker

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Community of Nations

Last week the United States hosted a gathering of nations in New York. Many countries were represented and many heads of state had time to address the body. President Barack Obama had an opportunity to speak before the body and kept his remarks consistent with what he has been saying on the world stage thus far into his presidency. Sadly he was again polarizing as those on the political right criticized him for apologizing for the United States past behavior. Some on the political left praised the president for his honest and candid reflections on the United States presence in world affairs. However, not every speech was common fare. There were some notable United States allies and enemies who took to the stage who received considerably different responses.

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu addressed the United Nations and went into a tirade against the Nazis, Iranians and and all members of the body who stayed seated as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad spoke. Ahmadinejad again stood on the world stage and denied the holocaust ever existing. Members of the United States delegation left when Ahmadinjad came to speak as did delegations from many other nations. On the other side of that coin, there were delegations that left in protest against Israel when Mr. Netanyahu rose to speak. Mr. Netanyahu received fair to favorable coverage in the United States media although the Palestinian Authority has a war crimes suit against Israel before the World Court at The Hague.

A man who did not receive such favorable response was Libyan leader Muammar al-Gaddafi. Gaddafi addressed the body for nearly two hours. He rambled through much of his speech failing to strike a consistent theme or tone. He was not a poised nor polished speaker and his thoughts were not clear to say the least. However he did seem to have merit to his suggestions. He was the only speaker who suggested a one state solution to problems in the Middle East. He suggested that if the future of the Israelis and the Palestinians were linked as one there would be more incentive for cooperation. He also pointed to a positive Arab-Israeli relationship citing the Arab harboring of Jews in the wake of the holocaust.

Muammar al-Gaddafi is by not means a saint, nor are his comments the most profound words uttered from the podium at the United Nations. However neither is Mr. Netanyahu or any other foreign leader who has risen and spoke from that podium. Many leaders across the world have the metaphorical "blood on their hands". As listeners to the speeches from the United Nations, we have to be critical of what we are hearing and who we are hearing it from. We must be vigilant to weed out the rhetoric and find the substantive points of the speeches.

In doing that, we as the American public must also be fair. If we are going to be open-minded and hear Mr. Netanyahu out before reaching a conclusion about him, we must also hear Mr. Gaddafi before we simply dismiss him. Neither of the men are angels, but likewise neither are devils. They are merely two players on the world stage who we hope can help solve a centuries old problem. To dismiss either one as a mad man who can offer nothing of merit is disrespectful to both men. Since much of the United States press won't offer a fair minded approach to Mr. Gaddafi and some foreign press services won't offer honest observations of Mr. Netanyahu that puts the burden on the citizens to do the necessary research and think critically and come to their own conclusions about the world around us.