Civil Rights Songs in the Key of Freedom Still Resonate

“Precious Lord, take my hand. Lead me on, let me stand. I am tired. I am weak. I’m worn. Through the storm, through the night, lead me on to the light. Take my hand precious Lord, lead me on.” In the movie Selma, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. calls Mahalia Jackson, the “Queen of Gospel,” at a moment when he is most discouraged. Over the phone, she sings “Precious Lord” to comfort him. For me, this was one of the …

Wisdom for Life in the New Year

As I travel in diverse circles from day to day, I pick up tidbits of wisdom from various voices, whether from speeches, conversations or even something I may have read. Approaching 2015, I’ll take a moment now to reflect and share a few recent quotes for what I call “wisdom for life in the new year.” The first quote comes from the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. as he eulogized former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry Dec. 6. He said: “When champions …

50 Years After Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize: The Power of Nonviolence

Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon. Indeed, it is a weapon unique in history, which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. I believe in this method because I think it is the only way to re-establish a broken community. —The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., University of Oslo, Dec. 10, 1964 It was 50 years ago this month that Martin Luther King Jr. made this statement during his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in Norway. …

The Who, What, When, Where of Voting

On November 4th, like millions of Americans, I’ll head to the polls to cast my ballot. I’ve done my homework, know where the candidates stand on important issues — like financial security and support for family caregivers — and I’m ready to vote. >> Sign up for the AARP Advocacy Newsletter But even though I’ve been voting for years, I still need to check some basic facts: When do I vote? The first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, …

How to Follow the 2014 Midterm Election Returns

Whether you’re a hard-core political junkie or just an ordinary citizen who’s interested in the outcome, there are a wealth of ways to follow the midterm elections on your laptop, tablet or smartphone. Here are some suggestions: TV news websites ABC News will provide a live streaming webcast of its election coverage, anchored by George Stephanopoulos, starting at 7 p.m.  Additionally, the network will augment its programming with live blogging by a team of analysts from FiveThirtyEight, including Nate Silver, …

New Hampshire House Candidates Clash on Social Security

The two candidates for a competitive House seat in New Hampshire duked it out over the future of Social Security in an Oct. 28 debate, which was broadcast statewide. “I will go to bat every single day” for Social Security, said Democratic Rep. Ann Kuster. Branding the system’s financing problems “easy to fix,” she called for raising the Social Security wage base limit from its current level of $117,000. >> AARP Voter Education Guide Republican challenger Marilinda Garcia voiced greater …