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School board member kicks off Black History Month by telling blacks they are ‘their own worst enemy’

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An Illinois school board member is under fire for kicking off Black History Month by posting a racist message on the board’s official Facebook page, the Daily Herald reports.

Elgin Area School District U-46 board member Jeanette Ward, wrote the post on Feb. 1 that began with the line: “Blacks have become their own worst enemy, and liberal leaders do not help matters by blaming self-inflicted wounds on whites or ‘society.'”

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Ward was quoting from author Jason L. Riley’s book “Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed.”

Ward’s post continued, “The notion that racism is holding back blacks as a group, or that better black outcomes cannot be expected until racism has been vanquished, is a dodge. And encouraging blacks to look to politicians to solve their problems does them a disservice.”

At a Monday night board meeting, speakers tore into Ward’s post, calling it “racist speech” and labeling it as “irresponsible,” particularly on the first day of  Black History Month.

“When we honor Black History Month, we ought to know what black history is all about,” stated Myrna Becker before adding that she was appalled by what she read.

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According to Ward, who is white,  she felt she was offering different perspective on Black History Month.

Danise Habun, a member of the Elgin Human Relations Commission, disagreed.

“There was nothing respectful toward or celebratory of Black History Month contained in the passage posted by Ms. Ward,” Habun said. “If her words and the quoted passage from the book is indeed to offer a fresh perspective, it appears as if there has been a failure to communicate. It continues to blame the victim, and ignores institutionalized racism. As an official elected to represent all members of the U-46 school district, Ms. Ward is to be held to a high standard of behavior and conduct.”

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 Ward refused to back down following the public comments, but did state that the entire board should not be held accountable for what she wrote.

She also defended the post by pointing out that original author Jason Riley is black.

“I want all people to succeed. There is one race — the human race. Did I not honor that African-American author by quoting him? I stand by quoting Jason L. Riley,” she said.

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Award-winning broadcaster Cokie Roberts dies at 75

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Veteran broadcaster Cokie Roberts has died at the age of 75 due to complications from breast cancer.

Roberts joined NPR in 1978 before moving to ABC News, and she won three Emmy Awards and was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame and was cited by the American Women in Radio and Television as one of the 50 greatest women in the history of broadcasting.

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However, The Atlantic's Derek Thompson argues that this is about to change because more millennials are leaving the big blue-state cities to move out to metro areas in key states such as Arizona, Georgia and Texas.

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‘The man who sold America’: Mitch McConnell’s mountain of political sins catalogued in devastating new profile

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Mitch McConnell finally has the power he's longed for since he was a 22-year-old intern for Sen. John Sherman, but his ruthless march to become Senate majority leader has seen him abandon almost all of his stated principles -- and earned him a lot of enemies.

The Kentucky Republican has been unpopular in his home state for years, but this summer has seen his approval rating plunge to 18 percent after MSNBC's Joe Scarborough tarred and feathered him with the nickname "Moscow Mitch," and he's increasingly seen as "the man who sold America," reported Rolling Stone.

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