Signs and Wonders
North Carolina NAACP President Rev. William J. Barber addresses Moral March on Raleigh participants.
Associated Press/Photo by Chuck Liddy/The News & Observer
North Carolina NAACP President Rev. William J. Barber addresses Moral March on Raleigh participants.

Signs and Wonders: Voter ID law opponents told to bring ID to protest

Newsworthy

Not as I do. Last year, the North Carolina General Assembly passed a ballot integrity law that would require voters in the Tar Heel State to produce identification at the polls. Liberal groups protested with a series of “Moral Monday” demonstrations both at the capitol in Raleigh and around the state. The weekly marches culminated on Saturday with a “Moral March” organized, in part, by the NAACP. The Moral Marchers objected to the voter ID requirement, but that didn’t stop them from issuing guidelines saying Marchers should bring a photo ID and to “keep it on your person at all times.” Sometimes there’s a fine line between irony and hypocrisy.

Driving Chevy off the levee. Chevrolet has rolled out a series of Olympic ads that take unprecedented steps toward normalizing homosexual families. Chevy says the ads are not political statements, but if saying it made it so, I would be thin and rich. The ads are particularly disappointing when you consider Chevrolet’s history of patriotic, values-driven advertising: campaigns such as “Like A Rock,” “America’s Heartbeat,” “Football, hot dogs, apple pie, and Chevrolet.” Consider AP’s description of the new ads: “One ad, called ‘The New Us,’ for the Chevrolet Traverse crossover SUV, shows quick shots of many different families, including a gay male couple with a son and a daughter. ‘While what it means to be a family hasn’t changed, what a family looks like has,’ a voiceover states. ‘This is the new us.’ Another ad, an overall Chevrolet brand spot, features a pastiche of different images of America, including a shot of a gay couple getting married. ‘Like the old love, the new love starts with a kiss,’ a voiceover states. ‘Like the old community, the new community still keeps us connected. … A whole new lineup for a whole new world.’” A whole new world indeed.

Journalistic jockeying. Bill Keller is not a digital maven. A former executive editor of The New York Times, he was a late arrival to Twitter, and one of his first tweets was: “#TwitterMakesYouStupid. Discuss.” But now journalism’s most famous Luddite—and a Pulitzer Prize winner for his coverage of the breakup of the Soviet Union—has left the Times to form The Marshall Project, a non-profit investigative journalism organization that will focus on the country’s criminal justice system. It’s an interesting project in part because both liberals and conservatives have concerns with the current system. Liberals call it racist and unjust. Conservatives share these concerns and add that it is a bloated bureaucracy and an example of big government run amok. It’s an arena ripe for high-powered investigative work.

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A manly approach. A couple of weeks ago, General Motors was basking in a glow of approval from the enlightened: It had named a woman as CEO. Today it’s proving the adage that “no good deed goes unpunished” by having to endure criticism that it isn’t paying her as much as it would a man. GM is defending itself for paying her a base salary of “only” $1.6 million—much less than predecessor Dan Akerson’s $9.1 million—by pointing to her overall compensation package of $14.4 million. That number is much more than Akerson’s, though it includes more in short-term incentives and long-term compensation. GM claims the mix is in line with her peer group. GM chairman Tim Solso said in a statement that “the company’s performance will ultimately determine how much she is paid.” That sounds like a pretty manly approach to me.

Warren Cole Smith
Warren Cole Smith

Warren, who lives in Charlotte, N.C., is vice president of WORLD News Group and the host of the radio program Listening In. Follow Warren on Twitter @WarrenColeSmith.

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