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2002-03 Op-Eds  |   About the Op-Ed Service  |   Writing an Op-Ed  |   News Service Home

Vincent Mor and Jacqueline Zinn
Nursing home quality: Public reporting can’t replace public policy
Going public with quality and inspection data isn’t a prescription for better nursing home care. Proactive public policy is required to improve the lives of the estimated 1.6 million elderly in nursing homes in the United States. 03-160 (distributed June 29, 2004)

Ruth J. Simmons
Slavery and justice: We seek to discover the meaning of our past
Brown University’s Steering Committee on Slavery and Justice will investigate and discuss an uncomfortable piece of the University’s – and our nation’s – history. The Committee’s work is not about whether or how reparations should be paid. Rather, it will do the difficult work of scholarship, debate and civil discourse, demonstrating how difficult, uncomfortable and valuable this process can be. 03-103 (distributed April 26, 2004)

David Shrayer-Petrov and Maxim D. Shrayer
Immigrant Stories
America still offers immigrant writers a shelter – a place and a space to write – and even the occasional rewards of the literary marketplace. For an immigrant writer, the welcoming anonymity of American life is both liberating and stifling, exhilarating and disheartening. America still promises, and gives, much of herself to immigrant writers. But once translated and published, immigrant stories start American lives of their own. 03-120 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Lavinia Limon
America must not close the door to refugees
Immigrants and refugees and their advocates are as shaken by terrorism as the rest of us and want to ensure that terrorists are not given a free pass to enter America. We must enforce and strengthen existing laws and institute new procedures aimed at terrorists and criminals. But we must not let refugees become collateral damage in the process. 03-119 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Andrei Codrescu
In defense of Tom ‘Thumb’ Ridge
History says that everyone coming here is a foreigner until proven otherwise. The U.S. immigration authorities have a long, flourishing tradition, beginning in the early 19th century, of treating every would-be immigrant like a criminal. Immigration personnel at Ellis Island changed names that sounded too “foreign” to sound more Amurrican. 03-118 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Mark Krikorian
Safety through immigration control
No matter the weapon or delivery system – hijacked airliners, shipping containers, suitcase nukes, anthrax spores – terrorists are needed to carry out the attacks, and those terrorists have to enter and operate in the United States. In a very real sense, the primary weapons of our enemies are not the inanimate objects at all, but rather the terrorists themselves. Thus keeping the terrorists out or apprehending them after they get in is indispensable to victory. 03-117 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Virginia M.C. da Mota
Let us leave no immigrant child behind!
Given that educating English language learners requires an investment in special programming – in a time when resources are shrinking– programs and services specifically designed for this student population may suffer the deepest cuts. While investments in educating English language learners have a current cost, that cost is small when compared to the future cost of failing to do so. 03-116 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Jean Burritt Robertson
Immigration and labor force participation: Have times changed?
Nationwide, manufacturing jobs, once the mainstay of the middle income, have been shrinking. In 1969 more than 34 percent of working Rhode Islanders were employed in manufacturing, today that number is 12 percent. Low-income service jobs have increasingly replaced manufacturing jobs. If today’s immigrants are to become the grandparents of tomorrow’s professionals, education and language skills will be a major key. 03-115 (distributed April 23, 2004)

Corey Brettschneider
Should presidents lie?
In many cases where strong national interests are at stake, a deliberate deception may be called for. But the decision to go to war is among the most fundamental questions the state faces. For this reason, Article I of the Constitution grants the power to declare war to Congress, our deliberative body, and an agent of the people’s consent. Can people give their informed consent if they have been deceived? 03-108 (distributed April 8, 2004)

David C. Lewis, M.D.
Stop perpetuating the “crack baby” myth
After 16 years of research and more than a decade of following the development of children thought to have been at serious risk, medical experts have not identified a recognizable condition, syndrome or disorder that would merit the label “crack baby.” With no basis in science, the term serves only to stigmatize and slander children and their mothers and should be eliminated from public discourse. 03-099 (distributed March 30, 2004)

William O. Beeman
Saddam’s capture may either heal or hurt
Providing Saddam with an open speaker’s platform in court will undoubtedly be uncomfortable, but it is the right way to proceed. The world will then see the real Hussein, rather than the symbolic villain the United States has been fighting for the last two years. 03-063 (distributed December 15, 2003)

Lewis P. Lipsitt
What is killing our kids?
It is no longer disease that poses the biggest threat to young lives, but behavioral misadventures of poorly understood origins. We need an effort on the scale of a Manhattan Project to create a solution that would end the behavior that is killing our children. That we are so limited in our knowledge at this stage in human history about the origins and nature of human behavior is unacceptable. 03-056 (distributed November 18, 2003)

William O. Beeman
Fixing Iraq Bush’s way won’t make America safer
Americans should not fool themselves into thinking that the $87 billion President Bush will request for Iraqi reconstruction is being spent for national defense. The only way to stop terrorism is for the United States to stop being a magnet for terrorist operations. That means, among other things, internationalizing military operations and treating Muslim people and Islamic culture with the respect accorded to other peoples and nations. 03-019 (distributed September 8, 2003)

Laura A. Szalacha
For the nation’s gay high school students, separate will never be equal
New York’s Harvey Milk School opened this fall to serve a student body consisting of gay students. Over the long haul, separate is never equal, and separation does not necessarily serve the best interests of students, gay or straight. But for now, safety is the primary concern; a separate school can end the hazing and attacks many gay students face. 03-018 (distributed September 5, 2003)

Brent Stuart Goodwin
Libya is a case study in fighting state-sponsored terrorism
Libya’s agreement to take responsibility for the Lockerbie Pan Am bombing, to renounce terrorism and to set up a $2.7-billion fund for families of the victims did not receive the attention it deserved. It was part of a successful campaign against state sponsored terrorism that produced measurable change in an individual and a nation’s foreign policy. 03-007 (distributed August 18, 2003)

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