It’s MLK Day, but why a “day of service” and not a day of “civil protest for justice”?

I feel annoyed every time I see a reference to "service" in honor of Martin Luther King Jr.'s life. Why? Certainly not because King himself was not a servant of justice. Indeed, just like the figure King followed, it was a service of ultimate sacrifice, service unto death. But King's variety of service was a … Continue reading It’s MLK Day, but why a “day of service” and not a day of “civil protest for justice”?

Mississippi social workers should beware a “generous” 2022 legislature

The Mississippi legislature seems hell-bent on achieving two major (and bipartisan) objectives - cutting incomes taxes and raising teacher pay. The time is right, according to the state's political leadership: The state is flush with (COVID-related) cash, the economy is doing (relatively) well, and sales tax revenue is flowing in significantly above projections. Everybody loves … Continue reading Mississippi social workers should beware a “generous” 2022 legislature

Social Work should help create a united front against rising American fascism

It becomes more clear every day that really bad things are going on in the American body politic. Even Joe Biden seems to get it, at last. After a year of silence on the Trump insurrection, punctuated by frequent encomiums to virtues of "bipartisan" governance, Biden's January 6th address called out Trump (albeit not by … Continue reading Social Work should help create a united front against rising American fascism

The future of U.S. social welfare policy is looking pretty grim right now

Elation over the election of Joe Biden on a relatively progressive social welfare agenda, barely a year ago now, has given way to deepening despair over the future of the U.S. social safety net. As 2021 comes to its dreadful Omicron close, Biden's ambitious "Build Back Better" family and worker-friendly agenda seems headed for the … Continue reading The future of U.S. social welfare policy is looking pretty grim right now

NASW-MS chapter’s social justice committee declares that “social work is political”

The Mississippi NASW chapter's social justice committee hosted its second topical Zoom forum last evening under the heading, "social work is political." It just may have set the stage for some of the most important discussions that Mississippi social workers and students have had in a long while. Four panelists - Kathryn Rehner-Sullivan, government affairs … Continue reading NASW-MS chapter’s social justice committee declares that “social work is political”

Rittenhouse trial outcome and the violent right’s presumptive “license to kill”

Opinions about last week's jury trial exoneration of Kyle Rittenhouse on murder charges, stemming from shooting and killing two Kenosha, Wisconsin Black Lives Matter protesters, are all over the map. I surely won't attempt to catalog them here, or try to discern which opinions have merit, and which do not. (There's a virtual river of … Continue reading Rittenhouse trial outcome and the violent right’s presumptive “license to kill”

Biden’s social welfare policy agenda is rapidly nearing the vanishing point

It's a sad history, but it tells us everything we need to know about the prospects for substantial progressive change under the nation's current political leadership. An ambitious social spending bill addressing critical needs - for family support and reducing child poverty, for education, health care, jobs creation, and for making a start on addressing … Continue reading Biden’s social welfare policy agenda is rapidly nearing the vanishing point

Attack on voting rights is the tip of the spear that can kill what’s left of U.S. social welfare policy

Voting rights are in sharp focus in social work, as well they should be. The coming week features two social work-related forum events - a Wednesday night presentation on the history of voting rights in Mississippi, sponsored by the Social Justice Committee of NASW Mississippi chapter, and a Friday late morning inaugural entry in "The … Continue reading Attack on voting rights is the tip of the spear that can kill what’s left of U.S. social welfare policy

The choice seems starkly clear: Social solidarity or civilizational breakdown. Which side is social work on?

Is this title some sort of trick question? Of course social workers (truly, anyone in their right mind, right?) would choose solidarity over breakdown. But why is that even a "choice" to begin with? To be sure, humanity faces a number of serious challenges, but a "breakdown of civilization" still sounds like alarmist hyperbole. Human … Continue reading The choice seems starkly clear: Social solidarity or civilizational breakdown. Which side is social work on?

The U.S. cannot afford its dysfunctional national government

At this moment (5:00 p.m., Friday, October 1), fierce "negotiations" continue within the Democratic Congressional caucus and between the caucus and the White House over what it will take to to get one or two holdout senators - the notorious so-called "moderate" Sens. Manchin of West Virginia and Sinema of Arizona - to join with … Continue reading The U.S. cannot afford its dysfunctional national government