Daily News Digest

Headlines: Candidates Split on Affirmative Action

Obama, McCain Split on Affirmative Action
In an interview Sunday, John McCain endorsed a proposed ballot measure to end race and gender-based affirmative action in Arizona. Barack Obama told journalists at the UNITY conference the same day he was "disappointed that John McCain flipped." Obama went on to discuss his vision for a more effective model of affirmative action.

Bombings in Baghdad, Kirkuk kill 57
The relative calm Iraq has enjoyed for years was broken when 57 people were killed in two simultaneous attacks today. 280 people were wounded. The attack in Baghdad by three female suicide bombers was on a group of marching Shiite pilgrims, while in Kirkuk a Kurdish demonstration was targeted.

Campaigns Turn Attention to Florida's Black Voters
Both presidential candidates are expected to address audiences at the National Urban League convention this week in Orlando. Outreach efforts to Florida, largely targeting African-American voters, are becoming a high priority for both campaigns.

Sudan Rallies Behind Leader Reviled Abroad
As a result of the recent charges against President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, forces inside Sudan, from supportive citizens, to officials, to many of the government's sworn political enemies, are all rallying behind the internationally vilified leader. Sudan's foreign minister says the threat of arrest may be a blessing in disguise, pressuring the government to cooperate with peacekeeping forces in Darfur that it has long resisted.

Bench of Memory at Slavery's Gateway
This weekend, Nobel laureate Toni Morrison held a memorial ceremony on Sullivan's Island, off the South Carolina coast, to dedicate the first installment in the "Bench by the Road" project. The project, created by the Toni Morrison Society, plans in the next five years to place benches as memorial sites in strategic locations that have significance in Morrison's novels and in black history.

Challenges Await Barack Obama at Home
After a successful trip through Europe and the Middle East, Obama returned to the US on Saturday to face the challenges forming throughout Middle America in his absence. Obama has stated that he is eager to focus more on domestic issues, saying, "People are worried about gas prices. They're worried about home foreclosures."

Democratic Convention Brings Challenges to Denver
For the last two elections, Denver had been trying to persuade Democrats to bring their convention to Colorado. Now that they have it, it is possible that they have bitten off more than they can chew. The host committee is $10 million short fundraising wise of where they need to be; two dozen delegate parties have already been canceled as a result.

'Sides' is Given His Due
The late Boston Globe sports writer Larry Whiteside was awarded the J.G. Taylor Spink Award. Whiteside was known for founding the "Black List," which was a database of African American journalists started in 1971. His son Tony Whiteside accepted the award on his behalf.

Sports
After Sitting in 2004, Ready to Stand and Deliver
The 2004 USA Men's Olympic basketball team had practiced together for just 20 days before the Games and faced embarrassing losses. LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony, who didn't get much of a chance to play in Athens, have been practicing with a new, restructured team for three years now, and are expected to put on quite a different show in Beijing.

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Wedge issue with racial flavor, media favorite.
I can't believe anyone is asking about affirmative action beyond the candidates general philosophy. To which the answer should be with regards to education: it's based on performance & need, period.

with employment: In the public sector, budgets & jobs are being cut. In a shifting transitioning economy, with downsizing, outsources, in-sourcing, etc. who can say what a policy will look like?

And then we could move beyond this litmus test wedge issue.

I do find it odd that we have made the most gains in the area of gender (education, small bus., workforce) but when the discussion comes up it's all about race. If the argument is to 'mend but don't end', then shouldn't we start with the areas where we've made the most gains? If we no longer need it?

Sent by Jon J | 9:01 PM | 7-31-2008

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