BLOG

It’s Time to Fix the Border Public Health Crisis

August 8, 2019 – Does anyone believe President Trump wants to have a serious discussion with Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY)  to address the public health crisis at the southern border?  “Senator Chuck Schumer has finally gone to the Southern Border with some Democrat Senators,” Trump recently tweeted, suggesting Democrats have sat on their hands and done nothing to try and address the situation.  “I will set up a meeting [with Schumer] ASAP!,” Trump wrote.   The opposite, of course, is true. Prior to Sen. Schumer’s trip, House Democrats visited two Texas-based detention centers last month and exposed the horrors of what they discovered. Democrats have held hearings, too, and passed a $4.6 billion border package to try and help migrant children held in U.S. custody.   The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate tabled the bill. “It’s not going to happen,” Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said.  Even Vice President Mike Pence, who toured detention facilities in Texas a few weeks ago, couldn’t deny what he saw. “This is tough stuff,” he said.  “The crisis is real, the time for action is now,” he added.   Trump has yet to tour a facility, saying only that he “may” do so in the future.  But that didn’t stop him from contradicting the Vice President’s assessment regarding the conditions at the centers Pence visited. Trump said they’re “beautifully run” and “clean,” despite having never been there himself.  We already know how a meeting between Trump and Schumer on detention center conditions would play out.  Trump would play to his base and blame Schumer and the Democratic party for the current situation. […]

States Must Do More to Prevent School-Based Child Sexual Abuse

This fall, child predators will slip through the cracks of well-intentioned security background checks and be employed at schools around the country, where they will have daily access to future victims. Yet states are neglecting to fund critical initiatives designed to protect children where they learn and play, allowing abusers like Larry Nassar to lurk within America’s school systems and perpetuate their crimes.  And it cannot continue.

Congress must confront sexual abuse of military children

Below is an excerpt from an op-ed that appeared in TheHill.com by Lyndon Haviland:

“A bipartisan bill by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) seeks to prevent child abuse and address domestic violence within military families. That’s a worthwhile mission that demands our full attention but the legislation is a missed opportunity to confront one of the most important challenges facing the sons and daughters of our service members. And until members of Congress have the courage to step forward and call it by its name — child sexual abuse — we will continue to fail thousands of at-risk military children and families who deserve better.”

A Movie Everyone Needs to See

Jennifer Fox’s movie, “The Tale,” is an emotionally wrenching and challenging journey into the difficult world of child sexual abuse. It is a brave movie of resilience but it provides no easy answers. I had the privilege of participating in a panel last night with Jennifer to discuss the movie in a session hosted by HBO, the Internet and Television Association, RAINN and Darkness to Light in Washington, DC.

Solving the Peruvian Food Paradox

I just returned from a second trip to Peru as part of a visionary gastronomy project called Cumari, a project of Forest Trends and Canopy Bridge that is engaging chefs and entrepreneurs in an unexpected dialogue about environmental protection, fisheries management and Amazonian food and food traditions. Cumari is calling attention to the cornucopia of Amazonian fruits, foods and preparations that offer an opportunity to experience the Amazon in new ways. And it demonstrates how environmentalists, chefs and public health professionals can and should work together to improve the health and well being of the Amazon and the people who live in and along the river.