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Warning: Long rant ahead...
Some facts (real facts not alternate facts): I am the parent of a child with disabilities who has benefited from the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The IDEA (in case you do not know - which I did not until it become relevant to me) is a complex (and wonderful) federal law. To keep it simple, one of the things that the law requires is that all students with disabilities (physical, intellectual...) be provided the opportunity to learn in the least restrictive environment - which means kids with disabilities cannot simply be locked away out of sight in a basement - as they often were before this law was enacted.
Now, this President who openly mocked an individual with disabilities while campaigning (and don't even try to throw the ridiculous spin at me that tries to say he did not) has nominated for Secretary of Education someone who openly opposes many of the provisions of the IDEA and who during her confirmation hearing appeared to not even know what the IDEA was.
Furthermore, this President's nominee for Attorney General in testimony before Congress in 2000, while seeming to praise the "intent" of the law, bemoaned the fact that the law requires school systems to give students with disabilities "special treatment". This "special treatment" is actually what the law intends. Qualifying students with special needs have a Individualized Education Program (IEP) which is developed by a team that includes educators, specialists, and parents. The idea, to put it simply, is that "special" plans/programs are needed to assure all students are given the best opportunity available. Honestly, in a perfect world, every student should have some sort of IEP - because all kids learn differently... but that is another topic.
Just to clarify, to comments from the AG nominee should be alarming to any parent of a child with disabilities because they point to possible interpretations or modifications of the law which would undermine the intent of the law and set our education system back to some very dark times for the children who benefit from the IDEA.
This is just one, more personal, reason that I am breaking from my usual non-political comment policy. This is not political. The IDEA has long held wide-spread bi-partisan support (although the fight for full funding is another issue).
I had a good time at the opening night of Brian Langlinais' Residency at The 5 Spot. Lynn Taylor and The Bar Flies opened the night. Really good music from a couple of Louisiana natives. After that, I was physically pretty wiped out and had to retreat home which means I, regretfully, missed a show at The Basement which included 2016 E2TG Artist of the Year Brian Wright. From all accounts, I missed a great one - which I already knew...
Now, let's get to the music. It is Thursday and we return to our relatively new Theme Thursday shuffle. Contrary to what I said last week, I have decided to keep going with our (unstated) January theme. I still have songs in that playlist and it seems to be more relevant every day, Disclaimers continue... some songs are included only for their title (as it COULD be interpreted) and some for their subject matter. The interpretations are mine alone, and the inclusion of any song/artist is not intended to suggest that they or their songs have anything to do with my theme.
One more tidbit of information, I created this playlist solely out of the songs already on my phone at the time it was created.
"You Have to Laugh" by Some Kind of Illness
Some times you do... Some Kind of Illness are a UK band that I have grown to like a great deal. This is from their self-titled album which was released in 2015.
"Free No More" by Jesse Terry
Jesse Terry is a Connecticut based singer/songwriter who I once mistook for a local. He does play around here quite often included several dates in the area later this month.
"Jaded" by Angels on the Fourth
Some of the members (at least one) of Angels on the Fourth have been in Pennsylvania for Groundhog Day - for Death Wish Coffee. This band includes former members of 2012 E2TG Band of the Year Skeletons in the Piano. I dig this song.
"Black America Again" by Common
The E2TG premier of rapper Common. This is the title track of his latest album which was released in November of last year.
"Start a Riot" by Banners
This should not seen as a call to action, but the title struck a nerve. Banners is the stage name of a UK musician. "Start a Riot" was a single released in 2015.
"Check Yourself" by Golden State Lone Star Blues Revue
The title fits some advice I would to offer to several people... Another great blues number from this all-star band of Texas and California blues players.
"Save the World" by Shovels and Rope
From Swimmin' Time (2014). Shovels and Rope will be doing a two-night stand at the Ryman Auditorium this month - one show will feature John Moreland opening and the other will included E2TG friend Aaron Lee Tasjan.
"Gonna Be Damned" by The Defeated County
Sure seems like it... Man, I really love The Defeated County who are from St. Louis. This song comes from their 2015 album Bar Tabs and Baby Names.
"No Plan" by David Bowie
The sad, scary thing is I think there is a plan... The title track from that Bowie EP that was released on his birthday last month.