An unusual event is taking place next Friday, 2/25, at 3 p.m. at the Church on the Hill on Boston's Beacon Hill. United Nations Independent Expert on the Human Right to Water and Sanitation Catarina de Albuquerque will be taking testimony on water inequality in Boston as it impacts immigrants, people of color and working class people.
When Free Press asked Open Media Boston to join the local host committee helping to organize theNational Conference for Media Reform (April 8-10 at the Seaport World Trade Center), we jumped on the opportunity. As a forward-thinking Boston news weekly, how could we not? NCMR is a huge media reform confab happening right here in our town.
We are witnessing a very rare thing this week. The people of Egypt are rising up in a grassroots democratic revolution on the heels of a simliar revolution in Tunisia. Other democratic revolts are occuring all over the Middle East in conservative traditionalist largely Muslim countries that are just the kinds of places where western news media and a cavalcade of experts are fond of telling us such things can't possibly happen. Naturally, I disagree. In fact, I think such revolts are inevitable.
People that follow my editorials here on Open Media Boston will recall that there are times when I say that I've had a hard time writing about a particular issue. This is one of those times. Chuck Turner got sentenced to three years in prison this week by US District Court Judge Douglas Woodlock after being convicted of taking a $1,000 bribe in 2007 and ostensibly lying about it to federal agents who interrogated him about the incident in 2008. I'm really not sure how to respond to that.
Supporters of Chuck Turner should head over to the Moakley US Courthouse on Tuesday at 2 p.m. for the former Boston City Councilor's sentencing hearing in front of US District Court Judge Douglas P. Woodlock on charges of taking a $1,000 bribe in 2007. Turner's in a tough spot and needs all the moral support he can get.
Well, looks like Open Media Boston is taking one more week off. The event we were going to cover in our News section got snowed out by the blizzard that's just calming down as I write. And I'm finishing up my winter academic residency. So, as I mentioned last week, we're happy to publish some fresh op-eds ... and I'll also remind everyone that comments to any articles we've already got up are always welcome.
Just a note to say that Open Media Boston will more or less on vacation this week. I'm taking a couple of winter session courses, the rest of our staff is still in holiday mode, and it's a slow news week in our main labor and non-profit sector beats (the looming wave of anti-worker legislation and civil rights violations taken as an unfortunate given); so it seems like a good time for a break. Our viewers are welcome to submit opinion pieces and calendar items as usual - and of course discussion and debate in the comments area of any of our articles is always welcome.
In this wee holiday edition of Open Media Boston, you'll find a piece asking for donations to the innovative, Jamaica Plain based, grassroots, multicultural, arts education program for kids, KidsArts! (the exclamation point being quite sensibly built into their name). They need to raise $15,000 by Friday or they may not make it far into the new year. We've already been asking for money for ourselves all month (and in general).
Every year, critics of the ever-growing list of US military adventures in the service of a foreign policy based largely upon the whims of the multinational corporations that own most of our politicians are faced with a thorny little question: Do we participate in Toys for Tots toy drives or not? This may seem like a no-brainer to many. After all, what's not to like about a program that gives out more toys to kids at Christmas than any other effort in history?
An especially interesting and timely panel discussion is being held this Friday at First Parish Church in Cambridge. Its title says it all ... "The Growing Menace of FBI Repression." I don't push events in my editorials very often, but I think people should take some time to check this one out if they're not too busy with the hustle and bustle of preparing for the holiday break (brief though it may be for most working people).