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Bill Moyers Journal
Bill Moyers Journal
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Learning to live together means deciding how responsible we are for one another, and how we fulfill that obligation. When should a nation of immigrants close its border? How many uninsured is too many? Is poverty inevitable? What's the proper role of religion in politics? These are deep questions, and they deserve more than a "conservative" or a "liberal" answer.

Add your concerns and solutions to the map.

Katherine Newman, photo by Robin Holland
On the fragile stability of the missing class: "One parent who gets sick. A health insurance plan that fails you, or no health insurance at all, which is true for many of these families. And you end up in trouble. And you could fall down below the missing class back into poverty. Which is what no one wants. They're absolutely desperate to stay out of that category. And if the economy's strong, they often do. And, in fact, can move up from the missing class up to the middle class if they get more education. But it's a fragile existence because they don't really have the security that comes with owning a home, for example. Or having a savings account. Or any of the other buffers the rest of us have. And they don't qualify for federal benefits for the most part. So they don't have that safety net that we put in whatever patchwork ways underneath the poor."

Watch Bill Moyers interview with Katherine about the "missing class".


Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On evangelicals and social responsibility: "And there are variations within the evangelical community. What I hear on the one hand, we have certain fellow believers who view the future in very well-defined ways and who or absolutely convinced that there's nothing that anybody or anything can do about it. And yet we also have the clear teachings of Jesus about being peacemakers, about caring for the world, about loving your enemy. How do those two things go together? So there's that deep biblical tradition that evangelicals can draw on to find another way."

Watch the interview with Dr. Timothy Weber and Rabbi Michael Lerner.

Dr. Samuel Rodriguez, photo by Robin Holland
On Latino voters and immigration policy: "We're all in favor of border protection and securing the borders, of course. But however, what we actually did see in the Republican Party is the emergence of something that subtle in the Republican Party, the xenophobia, American nativism under the guise of border protection and border security. And the amount of polarization — I'm a generation X'er, born in the great republic of New Jersey — I never would have imaged in my lifetime that I would have to prove my citizenship in order to apply for an apartment in Oklahoma, Texas or Arizona."

Watch the rest of Bill Moyers' conversation with Dr. Samuel Rodriguez.

Cory Booker, photo by Robin Holland
On race and American culture: "Well, I don't want us to be an America that is sanitized, homogenized, 'deodorized' as a friend of mine says, and forgets about race. The richness of America is that we are diverse. We're not Sweden. We're not Norway. We are a great American experiment. And as soon as we start trying to forget race or turn our back on race, number one, we don't confront the real racial realities that still persist. But, number two, is we miss the great delicious opportunities that exist in America and no where else. So, I don't want to be a race transcending leader. I want to be deeply understood as a man, as African-American, as a Christian, all that I am. But, ultimately it's a portal to punch through to a deeper and more textured, more nuanced understanding of the beauty and the brilliance of America. So, that involves a difficult conversation, not a sound bite."

Watch Bill Moyers interview Newark's mayor Cory Booker.
References and Reading:
Poverty
US Census
Official poverty statistics from the U.S. government.

Public Agenda on poverty and welfare
The journalists at CJR turn their attention to "auditing" campaign ads, speeches and other media moments. In addition to CJR staff a group of veteran journalists will add their perspective to the Campaign Desk's analysis.

University of Michigan's national poverty center
"The National Poverty Center (NPC) was established in the fall of 2002 as a university-based, nonpartisan research center. We conduct and promote multidisciplinary, policy-relevant research on the causes and consequences of poverty and provide mentoring and training to young scholars."

University of Michigan's national poverty center
"The Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) is a university-based center for research into the causes and consequences of poverty and social inequality in the United States. It is nonprofit and nonpartisan."

The Heritage Foundation on poverty and inequality
The Heritage Foundation provides a conservative analysis of poverty statistics.

Immigration
Public Agenda on immigration
Public Agenda's stated mission is to provide unbiased research to inform the American public and their leaders about issues of the day.

Public Citizen on immigration
Public Citizen focuses its immigration analysis on how trade policies such as NAFTA affect economies around the world.

Federation for American Immigration Reform
"FAIR seeks to improve border security, to stop illegal immigration, and to promote immigration levels consistent with the national interest — more traditional rates of about 300,000 a year."

National Immigration Forum
"The Forum is dedicated to embracing and upholding America's tradition as a nation of immigrants. The Forum advocates and builds public support for public policies that welcome immigrants and refugees and are fair to and supportive of newcomers to our country."

Health Care
Public Agenda on Health Care
Public Agenda's stated mission is to provide unbiased research to inform the American public and their leaders about issues of the day.

Public Citizen's Health Research Group
Public Citizen's Health Research Group "promotes research-based, system-wide changes in health care policy and provides oversight concerning drugs, medical devices, doctors and hospitals and occupational health."

Kaiser Family Foundation PULLING IT TOGETHER
President and CEO Drew Altman "pull[s] together ideas and data from across the Foundation's work to try to paint a bigger picture that hopefully helps to illuminate critical health policy issues."

Religion and Politics:
Adherents.com
Research site that collects and organizes statistics on over 4,200 religions worldwide. Draws from official religious organizations, polling organizations (Gallup, American Demographics), the national census and academic bodies.

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life
The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life offers a sampling of speeches and interviews by politicians on the topic of religious faith, as well as regularly updated religious news stories.

Politics on Beliefnet
Beliefnet.com, a multi-faith e-community, provides feature articles on politics as they relate to relgion.

Religion News Service
Provides updated coverage of religion news stories, features, and commentary from a wide variety of faiths. Updated daily, with searchable archives. R&E has a special election-year blog about the role faith is playing in the campaign and ballot box.

Religion and Ethics Newsweekly
The on-line version of the weekly PBS program, offers features and profiles of the people, trends, values, and spiritual life that exist behind the headlines, including full transcripts of shows and full-text supplemental stories.

Related Media:
Manuel Vásquez
A different take on immigration from sociologist and religious scholar Manuel Vásquez.

The Kerner Commission — 40 years later.
THE JOURNAL looks at an update of the Kerner Commission Report, which blamed the violence on the devastating poverty and hopelessness endemic in the inner cities of the 1960s and includes an interview with former Oklahoma Senator Fred Harris, one of the last living members of the Kerner Commission.

California Nurses
The Union is fighting for universal coverage 'Cheney Care'.

Christians United for Israel
BILL MOYERS JOURNAL reports on the politically powerful group Christians United for Israel, whose leader, Pastor John Hagee recently endorsed John McCain for the presidency.

Keeping the Faith
Pat Robertson's Regent University is working to ensure that Biblical principles are reflected in the law of the land.

Barbara Ehrenreich
Bill Moyers talks with author Barbara Ehrenreich about inequality in America.

MOYERS on 2008
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