When Joe Biden was vice president, he congratulated then-President Barack Obama for signing into law the Affordable Care Act by famously whispering into his ear: This is a big fucking deal. Which was caught by a hot mic. Never letting a good gaff go to waste, Organizing for America, the activist wing of the Obama administration, made a t-shirt that said: Health Reform Is a BFD.

I still have that t-shirt and wear it proudly.

I hope some group comes up with a similar one for when President Biden signs into law the American Rescue Plan. …

On the campus of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College, the four freshmen who initiated the Greensboro lunch counter sit in are honored with the February One, A&T Four Statue. Photo by cewatkins/CC

“Happy American History Month! I am not one of those who dismisses the effort recognize Black contributions during the month of February, I just want to make it clear there would be no America without us!” — Nikole Hannah-Jones, journalist and creator of the New York Times 1619 Project, in a Feb. 1, 2021 tweet.

On Feb. 1, 1960, four Black young men — freshmen at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College — walked into a Woolworth’s store in Greensboro, N.C., and changed the world. But first Jibreel Khazan (whose name then was Ezell Blair Jr.), David Richmond, Franklin McCain…

It perpetuates the same ideology that got us Trump and the assault on democracy

In January 2018, about 500 people in St. Paul, Minn., marched for immigrant rights. The sign in the center that says “If you don’t want immigrants, stop destabilizing their countries” summarizes the link between U.S. foreign policy and immigration. Photo by Fibonacci Blue/CC

I think we can all agree that what happened Jan. 6, 2021, was frightening and fascistic. I hope every single person who stormed the Capitol is arrested and prosecuted, especially Inciter-in-Chief Donald J. Trump. I agree with President-elect Joe Biden. It was an assault on our democracy.

The Trump presidency and the Covid-19 pandemic has put immense pressure on U.S. democracy — every single aspect of it — from elections and voting to policing and criminal justice to health care, the economy and education. This pressure has exposed systemic failings and longstanding fissures built into the country’s democratic structures.


In this image from video, impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., speaks against the organizing resolution for the trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP-Ninian Reid/Flickr/CC)

History repeats itself. First as tragedy, second as farce. — Karl Marx

It was last year when Republican senators voted to acquit President Donald J. Trump on the abuse of power and obstruction charges in the Senate impeachment trial. Republicans said Trump may have been wrong in his dealings with Ukraine and demanding an investigation of Joe Biden and his son, Hunter, but it doesn’t merit removing him from office.

The American people should decide, they said.

One year later, some of these same Republican senators have now changed their tune. At least 12 Republican senators plan to challenge the…

Tom Vilsack, former governor of Iowa and Obama’s agriculture secretary, got called up again for Cabinet duty by President-elect Joe Biden to be Biden’s agriculture secretary.

Early on, I said Biden should be able to pick anybody he wants for his Cabinet but this one left me disappointed. Why? Because I read the reports about Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., lobbying for Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, to become the next USDA chief. Fudge sits on the House Committee on Agriculture and chairs its subcommittee on Nutrition, Oversight and Department Operations, and said she would spotlight hunger and nutrition, farmworkers and food…

Thoughts on coalition politics and the post-Trump world

President-elect Joe Biden campaigns in Iowa during the Democratic primary in 2019. Gage Skidmore/CC

As a lifelong political activist, a student of socialism and social change, I’m concerned that a significant number of left and progressive thinkers, leaders and activists are reading the post-election moment like every other post-election moment. And it is not.

The last four years of the Trump presidency, its trampling of democratic norms, incompetent and criminal behavior, along with the multiple crises we face have made for unprecedented challenges. We are closing in on 300,000 dead from Covid-19 pandemic, which has also intensified systemic racial inequities and economic inequality. Millions are unemployed, hungry with food bank lines extending for miles…

Photo by visuals on Unsplash

Let’s just cut to the chase: Trump and the Republican Party are trying to overturn the election and permanently damage electoral democracy by disenfranchising Black voters.

They won’t be successful in overturning the election. But it is important to look at how racism subverts democracy.

Voter suppression morphs to vote suppression

In addition to engaging in voter suppression through a myriad of means, all of which make it harder for Black people — and many others — to vote, they are now pivoting to attempt vote suppression — throwing out legally cast ballots in counties where the Black population is the majority or significant.

Let’s be…

Lake Michigan sunrise photo by Teresa Albano.

The sun still rises. Let’s slow it down and take a breath.

Then let’s make sure every — and I do mean EVERY — legitimate ballot cast in 2020 is freaking counted!

Would we have wanted a landslide? Yes, of course. But a win for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on the scale of Trump’s 2016 win (a squeaker in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin) would be OK by me too.

And here’s the thing: the totals are not even in from these states and may not be for a while. Yet Trump threatens to shut down the legitimate vote count…

A Minnesotans for Biden-Harris campaign sign in support of Joe Biden for President and Kamala Harris for Vice President ahead of the 2020 general election in a front yard in Hibbing, Minnesota. Photo by Tony Webster/CC

In the last debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden, one of the most significant moments for me came when Biden, visibly angry and upset, talked about the 545 migrant children “ripped from their [parents’] arms and separated” at the border as per Trump administration policy.

Trump jerkily danced around moderator Kristen Welker’s question on whether he had a plan to reunite the 500+ children with their parents, claiming so-called “coyotes”and “lots of bad people” brought the children. During his disgraceful answer, you could see the frustration building in Biden. At one point he closes his eyes and bows his…

Sticker sent to author as part of her vote-by-mail ballot.

Here’s the good news: as of Oct. 28 almost 75 million people have early voted. That is 54.2% of the total votes counted in 2016, according to the University of Florida’s U.S. Election Project. Of the states that record party affiliation, some 7 million more Democrats early voted than Republicans. There are 20 states that have party affiliation data available, including the battleground states of Arizona, Iowa, Florida and Pennsylvania.

Here’s the bad news: Republicans are slightly ahead of Democrats in early in-person voting. Many more Democrats than Republicans have voted via mail-in ballots.

That’s one reason why the president…

Teresa Albano

Writers interpret the world in various ways, the point is to change it.

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