BlueNC's blog

Friday News: Unfair and Imbalanced

FOX NEWS' CONSERVATIVE PARROT TUCKER CARLSON TO LECTURE UNC JOURNALISM STUDENTS: Fox News TV commentator Tucker Carlson will be the featured speaker in a distinguished lecture series at the UNC School of Media and Journalism in April – a choice that has drawn scorn on social media. “This makes me want to turn my diploma around to face the wall,” Leslie Cohig Gura chimed in. The criticism comes at a time when ideological balance and free speech are hotly debated topics on U.S. campuses, including the passage of a campus free speech law by the state legislature and a new policy by the UNC Board of Governors. The policy calls for public universities to punish those who substantially disrupt campus speakers.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/education/article200375894.html

Thursday News: How about "Laws & Regulations" instead of "Thoughts & Prayers"?

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THE 18TH SCHOOL SHOOTING IN 2018 CLAIMS 17 LIVES IN PARKLAND FLORIDA: The suspect in a deadly rampage at a Florida high school is a troubled teenager who posted disturbing material on social media before the shooting spree that killed 17 people and wounded more than a dozen others, according to a law enforcement official and former schoolmates. Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said the 19-year-old suspect, Nikolas Cruz, had been expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School for "disciplinary reasons." "I don't know the specifics," the sheriff said. However, Victoria Olvera, a 17-year-old junior, said Cruz was expelled last school year after a fight with his ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend. She said Cruz had been abusive to his girlfriend. Nikolas Cruz asked to move in with a friend's family in northwest Broward. The family agreed and Cruz moved in around Thanksgiving. According to the family's lawyer, who did not identify them, they knew that Cruz owned the AR-15 but made him keep it locked up in a cabinet. He did have the key, however.
http://www.wral.com/suspect-s-disturbing-social-media-posts-being-dissected/17342131/

Wednesday News: Resegregation

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GOP LEADERS PONDER BREAKING UP SCHOOL DISTRICTS TO COURT SUBURBAN VOTERS: State lawmakers will begin studying next week how to break up North Carolina school districts, potentially paving the way for splitting large school systems like Wake County and Charlotte-Mecklenburg. Supporters said the state should look at what’s the most effective size for school districts while opponents said it could lead to resegregation of schools. Brawley, Bradford and Malone also represent counties where there’s been support from some suburban residents to break up their school districts. Many transplants to North Carolina are used to individual towns running their own small school systems. In contrast, most school systems in North Carolina are county-based.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article199908649.html

Tuesday News: The word you're searching for is "Draconian"

ALLEGATIONS SURFACE THAT PREGNANT NC INMATES REMAIN SHACKLED DURING CHILDBIRTH: SisterSong, which focuses on reproductive rights for women of color, said it reached out to the department Jan. 22 after someone from a local medical facility contacted them and said two prisoners were shackled despite medical staff asking that the shackles be removed. "Active labor" is one of a few exceptions to the prison system's restraint policies, which generally require inmates be restrained while outside a correctional facility or a secure transport vehicle. The policy also says new mothers "shall be restrained after birth of the child and the medical authorities have completed their work," but also that she "shall not have her hands restrained while bonding and feeding the baby." "The handcuffs will be removed from an inmate who has recently given birth in order for the inmate to hold her newborn child," the policy states. "The inmate must remain sitting in her bed or chair while holding the newborn child. Leg irons will remain on the inmate."
http://www.wral.com/state-prisons-plan-policy-change-after-reports-of-pregnant-women-shackled-during...

Monday News: The Dreamer debate

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MOODY TRUMP IS AN UNKNOWN FACTOR AS SENATE GEARS UP FOR IMMIGRATION FIX: The Senate begins a rare, open-ended debate on immigration and the fate of the "Dreamer" immigrants on Monday, and Republican senators say they'll introduce President Donald Trump's plan. Though his proposal has no chance of passage, Trump may be the most influential voice in the conversation. If the aim is to pass a legislative solution, Trump will be a crucial and, at times, complicating player. His day-to-day turnabouts on the issues have confounded Democrats and Republicans and led some to urge the White House to minimize his role in the debate for fear he'll say something that undermines the effort. Yet his ultimate support will be vital if Congress is to overcome election-year pressures against compromise. No Senate deal is likely to see the light of day in the more conservative House without the president's blessing and promise to sell compromise to his hard-line base.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/national-politics/article199615529.html

Sunday News: From the Editorial pages

LEGISLATIVE LEADERS HOLD SHAMEFUL KANGAROO COURT SESSION: If anyone needs an example of the kind of abusive, unprofessional and unbusiness-like manner in which the General Assembly operates these days, all they needed to do was witness the conduct Thursday afternoon of the legislature’s Joint Appropriations Committee meeting. It was an exercise in abuse by the legislative leadership and an embarrassment to the General Assembly and the citizens of North Carolina it represents. The time, place and manner of the grilling made for a disgusting display. The inquisitors were less concerned with answers than making veiled accusations, playing to their partisan base, the TV cameras and intimidating Lilly and the governor’s office. They owe Lilly, their fellow legislators and the voters who have given them the privilege to represent them, a full and sincere apology.
http://www.wral.com/editorial-legislative-leaders-hold-shameful-kangaroo-court-session/17323763/

Saturday News: Primary problems

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COURT OF APPEALS GRANTS GOP REQUEST TO BLOCK JUDICIAL PRIMARIES: Primary elections for statewide judicial races in North Carolina are canceled again after an appeals court granted a request on Friday from Republican lawmakers to temporarily halt a federal judge’s ruling. The announcement came in a two-paragraph notice from a clerk at the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The decision comes three days before the filing period was to open for candidates seeking the four statewide judicial seats on the ballot in the 2018 elections. Barring any further action by the courts, state elections officials said in a subsequent memo, candidates seeking judicial seats in 2018 will file for election from June 18 to June 29.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article199328524.html

Friday News: You will be missed, sir

AFTER A LONG LIFE OF PUBLIC SERVICE, REP. MICKEY MICHAUX ANNOUNCES RETIREMENT: A political fixture in Durham and the General Assembly, N.C. Rep. H.M. “Mickey” Michaux, 87, announced Thursday that he will retire from elected office. After King was assassinated, Michaux said Thursday in a speech at the General Assembly, he told himself he’d never go into politics. Now, after winning 22 elections to represent Durham in the General Assembly, Michaux is in his 43rd year in politics. It’ll be his last, he said Thursday, announcing he doesn’t plan to run for re-election. When he first joined the legislature, he was just the third African-American person ever elected. They decided to band together. “We were referred to as smart Negroes. That was to our face. So we decided we need to have our caucus, so we started the first black caucus,” he said. Michaux touched on his accomplishments in advancing civil rights in his speech to lawmakers Thursday. “I want you to be very careful what you do when I’m not here,” he told them.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/counties/durham-county/article199194364.html

Thursday News: Ace in the hole?

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ORIGINAL GERRYMANDERING LAWSUIT BACK IN ACTION: Democrats and voters who filed the first lawsuit this decade challenging North Carolina lawmakers’ redistricting plans went back to state court on Wednesday, seven years after challenging the 2011 election maps, seeking relief from districts they contend still weaken the overall influence of black voters. While that case is on appeal at the U.S. Supreme Court, the critics of the Republican redistricting plans are trying a different appeal to state judges, and they’re doing it through a case that has taken a tortuous path back to Wake County Superior Court, where it stands today. “The stay entered yesterday by the United States Supreme Court does not deprive this state court of the authority or duty to interpret the state constitution and to ensure that Joint Plaintiffs are afforded full constitutional relief,” the 15-page request for relief submitted by the Southern Coalition for Social Justice states.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article198867404.html

Wednesday News: The real Deep State

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REPUBLICANS CALL GENERAL ASSEMBLY INTO SESSION WITH SECRETIVE AGENDA: North Carolina lawmakers are returning to Raleigh this week, but they’re not giving the public many details on what they plan to vote on. Both the state House of Representatives and the state Senate are due back in session Wednesday. A spokeswoman for Republican Senate leader Phil Berger said the Senate might have votes that day, Thursday, or Friday – or maybe all three days – but didn’t say what they might be voting on. “I’m IN the state senate and I don’t know what we’re voting on this week,” Democratic Sen. Jeff Jackson of Charlotte wrote in a tweet. “This is nuts.” Legislative leaders have hinted that votes might be coming on more controversial topics, such as redistricting or judicial reform.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article198725179.html

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