AP Sources: Obama to allow sale of Canceled Plans

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WASHINGTON – Bowing to pressure, President Barack Obama intends to permit continued sale of individual insurance plans that have been canceled because they failed to meet coverage standards under the health care law, officials said Thursday. The decision was designed to ease the impact on millions of consumers who have received cancellation notices in recent […]

Not Good Enough: Math, Reading Scores Up Slightly

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WASHINGTON  – Sometimes the best isn’t good enough: Most American fourth and eighth graders still lack basic skills in math and science despite record high scores on a national exam. Yes, today’s students are doing better than those who came before them. But the improvements have come at a snail’s pace. The 2013 Nation’s Report […]

High Court Weighs Michigan Affirmative Action Ban

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WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court is taking up a case about Michigan’s voter-approved ban on taking account of race in college admissions. The justices are hearing argument Tuesday over whether the change to the state constitution that voters backed in 2006 discriminates against minorities. The outcome also could affect similar measures in California and Washington […]

Jealous to Step Down as NAACP President This Year

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NEW YORK – As the world has discovered, Benjamin Todd Jealous is a man of his word, and his word is his bond. Five years ago when he became the youngest president and CEO of the NAACP, he promised to take the association to a new level of achievements. He also promised his family that […]

A Look at Federal Role in Civil Rights Cases

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WASHINGTON – Almost as soon as George Zimmerman was pronounced “not guilty” in a Florida courtroom, the cry went up. The U.S. government must get “justice for Trayvon,” insisted protesters angry about the fatal shooting of unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin. The call will resound again later this month through events marking the 50th anniversary […]

AG Holder To Push For Lighter Low-Level Drug Sentences

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WASHINGTON — With the US facing massive overcrowding in its prisons, Attorney General Eric Holder is calling for major changes to the nation’s criminal justice system that would scale back the use of harsh sentences for certain drug-related crimes. In remarks prepared for delivery to the American Bar Association in San Francisco, Holder also favors […]

Blacks Attend Underfunded ‘Racially Separate’ Colleges

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WASHINGTON – Despite high test scores and access to higher education, Black students often attend poorly-funded colleges and receive certificates instead of earning degrees, according to a recent report. The report titled “Separate and Unequal,” by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, found that, “White students are increasingly concentrated today, relative to […]

Maryland Dig Seeks Proof of First Free Black Community

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EASTON – Archaeology students have been sifting through a little patch of ground on Maryland’s Eastern Shore this summer, seeking evidence that it was home to the nation’s first free African-American community. Historians say hundreds of free blacks once lived in the area, while plantations flourished with hundreds of black slaves not far away. The […]

Obama Asks for ‘Soul Searching’ After Zimmerman Verdict

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WASHINGTON — Grappling with the Trayvon Martin case in the most personal of terms, President Barack Obama said Friday it’s time for Americans to search their souls on race and look for ways to move forward after the shooting and trial in Florida. The nation’s first black president, who early on had said that if […]

Zimmerman Cleared in Shooting of Trayvon Martin

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SANFORD – Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman was cleared of all charges late Saturday night in the shooting of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black teenager whose killing unleashed furious debate across the U.S. over racial profiling, self-defense and equal justice. Zimmerman, 29, blinked and smiled slightly when the verdict was announced. He could have been […]