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Shanna L. Smith, President and CEO of the National Fair Housing Alliance, released a statement today in response to the February/March 2013 cover for Bloomberg Businessweek and its depiction of homeowners of color.

“The National Fair Housing Alliance condemns the use of an offensive and flatly inaccurate magazine cover used by Bloomberg Businessweek to define our nation’s experience with foreclosure and recovery in the housing market. We were shocked and dismayed by a Jim Crow era cover and its depiction of homeowners of color. It is so mind-boggling and even difficult to know what this newsmagazine was trying to convey.

jallianwalaDavid Cameron thinks what happened at Jallianwala Bagh was a “deeply shameful event in British history.”

In my condolence book, that’s as close to a ringing apology as you can expect from a sitting British Prime Minister for the massacre of 1919.

Certainly Cameron sounds a lot more diplomatic than Prince Philip who claimed that he’d heard the death toll had been exaggerated. And he even sounds a little more contrite than Queen Elizabeth who called it a “difficult episode” but then briskly moved on saying “history cannot be rewritten”.

Cameron, by contrast, came perilously close to an actual apology. Andrew Buncombe, Asia correspondent for The Independent tweeted out a photograph of what Cameron actually wrote in the condolence book.

Recent developments by the IMF in Jamaica and now the Bahamas portend significant problems for these two prominent West Indian Countries going forward. In the case of the Bahamas IMF intervention would be even more serious than is the case with Jamaica. While the Jamaican Debt to GDP ratio overrun of 140 percent is higher than that of the Bahamas, Jamaica has a more developed Capital Market Driven Economy (CMDE) and consequently many more avenues to attempt compliance with any IMF sanctions.

Under pressure from the IMF Jamaica has entered a formal proposal to reduce their debt to GDP ratio from 140 to 95 percent over the next five years. Included in the proposal which Jamaica hopes the IMF will approve is an attempt to get their bond holders to accept a reduction in their payouts. Other elements of the plan as reported in The Caribbean Journal include intensifying tax reform efforts, with greater levels of tax compliance, and increasing public sector transformation. Jamaica is also attempting to eliminate discretionary tax waivers, and secure a contract with public sector workers to achieve a wage-to-GDP ratio of 9 percent by 2015/2016. It is also reported that Jamaica has already completed significant portions of a Public Debt Management Act.

In a packed high school gym in Las Vegas, Nevada, President Barack Obama calmly spoke on the real possibility of comprehensive immigration reform. As I sat in my chair just 15 feet away from the president, I was trying to understand what was going on in front of me. As an individual that was undocumented for 22 years here in the United States, I couldn’t believe that I was about to hear a speech that I have dreamed of my entire adult life.

Only four months prior, I would have not been allowed in to this event since I wouldn’t have been able to provide proper identification. Back then, I was an undocumented immigrant with very little opportunity in this country. Words can't and never will truly explain what it means to be undocumented. It would be like describing what a marathon feels like to someone who has never ran more than a mile. But as someone who has seen both side of the undocumented line, I am hopeful that, this time, change will come.

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