WASHINGTON – In his resignation speech following Great Britain’s vote to divorce from the European Union, Prime Minister David Cameron claimed several achievements by his government: reforming welfare and education; increasing development assistance to “the poorest people in the world”; and “enabling those who love each other to get married, whatever their sexuality.” He also mentioned “building a bigger and stronger society” – a reference to his “Big Society” ideological framework, which sought to empower local people and communities as an alternative both to centralized bureaucracies and to libertarian indifference.
The Sacramento funeral for Mustafa Rafi was the start of a yearlong effort by Sacramento Bee journalists to document serious needs within the city’s Afghan refugee community. Men and women who served alongside U.S. soldiers, earning a special visa to immigrate here because of threats from the Taliban, have found themselves facing poverty, violent crime and substandard living conditions. They seek the American dream. They don’t want charity, but they do need help.
A year ago Sunday, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that same-sex couples had the same constitutional right as other-sex couples to wed the person they love. I expected the first anniversary of that monumental decision would be a time of celebration and joy.
In Washington, Rep. John Lewis was leading Democrats in a sit-in to force the Republican-controlled House to vote on modest gun control measures, while Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer was telling a gun control rally on the west steps of the California Capitol that the Second Amendment should be amended.