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Stories written by Keith A. Owens

279 stories found. Showing page 1 of 10.

The case for shadow schools: Looking to the Black Panthers for ideas on running schools.

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 3/10/1999

Types: News, Education

Maybe the time has come to give up on public education. The hell with it. The old saying goes that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But if it is broke, and can’t be fixed, replace it with something that works. During a barely ...[MORE]

Proof you can’t count on DPS

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 10/4/2006

Types: News, Education

The final results of "Count Day" won't be known for at least a week, but regardless of what they show — whether or not the majority of the missing 25,000 Detroit youngsters ultimately returned to Detroit Public Schools in time for the district to get the millions of dollars in state funds i...[MORE]

The lessons of Stringer Bell

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 9/20/2006

Types: Culture, Media

How could they kill Stringer Bell? How could they do it?I'm still trying to adjust.If you're a fan of HBO's The Wire, you can relate to my distress. If not, then let me say briefly that this is one of the best TV programs in a long, long time. To call it a cop drama would be an extreme disserv...[MORE]

Is New Orleans the new Detroit?

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 9/6/2006

Types: News, Media

At one edge of this city's future are the extravagant visions of its boosters. Awash in federal cash, the New Orleans they dream of will be an arts-infused mecca for youthful risk-takers, a boomtown where entrepreneurs can repair to cool French Quarter bars in ancient buildings after a hard day ...[MORE]

The high cost of being poor

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 8/23/2006

Types: News, Business

This is one of those things most folks who've never had to experience economic hard times can never seem to understand. That's not to say everyone living a comfortable life should automatically be written off as callous and uncaring toward those less fortunate than themselves, because that sim...[MORE]

The gentle touch that money buys

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 8/9/2006

Types: News, Law

Sometimes it pays to be a member of the privileged class. Just ask Mel Gibson. Hell, you can ask O.J. Simpson.This is really pretty obvious, but I can't count the number of times that I've heard someone say — and actually believe — that this is all an illusion. When folks like Rodney...[MORE]

Chicken Littles and voting rights

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 7/26/2006

Types: News, Law

Sometimes people forget.When President Lyndon Johnson won passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, it was because it had become painfully obvious by then that black Americans, particularly black Americans in the South, didn't stand a chance of being afforded the most basic and elemental Ameri...[MORE]

Help is here, look in the mirror

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 7/12/2006

Types: News

At this late date, I think most Detroiters would agree that the likelihood of a city-saving miracle featuring the angelic appearance of cash-heavy care packages floating down from the sky and into the city treasury appears highly unlikely. The state and feds have their own money problems, and ...[MORE]

More talk about the ‘N’ word

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 6/28/2006

Types: Culture, Lifestyle

Based on the volume of responses to my last column, I think it's safe to say that the "N" word gets people talking. I kind of thought it might.I wrote about the Web site abolishthenword.com, whose creators have taken on the mission of erasing the word "nigger" from our vocabulary, and that inc...[MORE]

Why the ‘N’ word refuses to die

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 6/14/2006

Types: Culture, Lifestyle

First, a warning. This column contains racially offensive language for which the author makes no apology. Not that offensive language — or at least language that is offensive to some — is anything new to Metro Times, but when it comes to certain subjects, even we freewheeling types h...[MORE]

A mural’s moral for Detroit

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 5/24/2006

Types: News, Law

When I first saw it, I couldn't believe it. I'd hardly lived a sheltered life, and definitely was no stranger to racism, but still. ...There's something about the Birwood Wall and its history that just kind of knocked me upside the head. You mean an actual wall was built right here in a Detroi...[MORE]

Money, marches & immigration

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 5/10/2006

Types: News, Business

There wouldn't be an illegal immigration "problem" in America if there weren't companies-who-hire-illegal-immigrants-at-dirt-wages-so-they-don't-have-to-pay-workers-a-fair-wage problem. Like so many other major issues in America, this is all about the money. It's one of the first things I was ta...[MORE]

In your face about AIDS

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 4/26/2006

Types: News, Politics

This column is in memory of Rodney Dildy, a very close friend who died from AIDS almost 10 years ago. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the first recorded case of the disease in America, and I can't think of a better time to recall the life and death of someone who changed my ignorant and ...[MORE]

The high price of being too cool

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 4/12/2006

Types: Culture, Lifestyle

Can you ever be too cool for your own good? Is that part of the problem for millions of young black men who seem far from the workaday mainstream, off in a world of hustling, jail and unemployment? Or is that just a stereotype that's part of the problem — and no explanation at all? In my l...[MORE]

The brothers behind the stats

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 3/29/2006

Types: News, Law

Late last year, I spent about an hour one Saturday evening visiting a group of young men at Mound Correctional Facility in Detroit who had invited me to meet with them. They had read some of my columns, and they had begun an in-house (OK, in-prison) newsletter with the purpose of helping one ano...[MORE]

Passing around the stupidity

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 3/15/2006

Types: News, Media

It's gonna take a whole lot more than any "groundbreaking," "edgy," "daring," "bold," "reality" TV show to make the slightest dent in America's racial divide. My guess is that whatever progress remains to be made in this area — and there is plenty — will require that we as a nation dea...[MORE]

Whites on ice & Gumbel’s gaffe

By Keith A. Owens

Published: 3/1/2006

Types: Culture, Sports

Just before the 2006 Winter Olympic Games got started in Turin, Italy, I was watching Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel when he essentially said that winter sports aren't real sports because ain't enough black folks in the mix. For that matter, there's only a relative handful of nations involved,...[MORE]

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