On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Monday, Jan. 20, get to the Loft Cinema, 3233 E. Speedway Blvd., to see Let the Fire Burn, a powerful award-winning documentary on the racist maneuvering, shooting and bombing of a Philadelphia neighborhood block by police in an attempt to end the existence of the organization MOVE. The film starts at 5 p.m. and is FREE.
In the astonishingly gripping Let the Fire Burn, director Jason Osder has crafted that rarest of cinematic objects: a found-footage film that unfurls with the tension of a great thriller. On May 13, 1985, a longtime feud between the city of Philadelphia and controversial radical urban group MOVE came to a deadly climax. By order of local authorities, police dropped military-grade explosives onto a MOVE-occupied rowhouse. TV cameras captured the conflagration that quickly escalated—and resulted in the tragic deaths of eleven people (including five children) and the destruction of 61 homes. It was only later discovered that authorities decided to “...let the fire burn.” Using only archival news coverage and interviews, first-time filmmaker Osder has brought to life one of the most tumultuous and largely forgotten clashes between government and citizens in modern American history.
On this week's AZ Illustrated Politics: Congressman Ron Barber (D-Dist. 2) discussed the cuts to benefits for veterans in the federal budget deal; why he voted alongside Republicans to delay the penalty for people who don't buy health insurance this year; the future of the A-10; the latest on immigration reform; and more. Then state Reps. Ethan Orr (R-Dist. 9) and Bruce Wheeler (D-Dist. 10) looked ahead to what we can expect in this year's legislative session.
[Satire Alert!] Rep. John Kavanagh has proposed shortening Arizona’s education requirements to completion of the sixth grade.
“Someone who’s going to work behind the counter at McDonalds doesn’t need any more than a sixth grade competency in reading and math,” he said. “It’s time to dramatically look at our entire philosophy of K-12 education.”
Kavanagh suggested students who earn his new Certificate of Sixth Grade Competency need one addition to their education before they leave school. “They all should be required to take a three week course in basic English elocution. We need to be able to understand them when they ask, ‘Do you want fries with that?’ or ‘Would you like to supersize that?’" He added, "If they can train people at India’s call centers to speak like Americans, certainly we can train our students to say a few key phrases so customers can understand them.”
When asked whether it makes sense to encourage people to have a high school education so they can be informed citizens and voters, Kavanagh replied, “Are you kidding? We shouldn’t let those idiots vote! I’m working on a ‘No Diploma, No Ballot’ bill that adds a high school diploma to voter ID requirements.”
OK, Kavanagh never said any of that, but I put a Satire Alert! up front because, as ridiculous as my faux-news story sounds, it’s well within the range of unreasonable discourse we’ve come to expect from conservatives.
What Kavanagh actually said was Arizona is sending too many students to our state universities. These are his words — and I’m not making this up.
“If somebody’s going to end up in a sales position or someone’s going to be a real estate agent, why are we investing all this money in a research university degree?” he said. “What’s the purpose of it?”
Dial 911 for immediate emergencies, but CALL 211 for any other urgent needs, including adoption, foster care,… More