the journalista

i read. i write. i think. i link.

Federal Student Aid Chief Quits, Refuses to Testify

Free Application For Federal Student Aid

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James Runcie, the Federal Student Aid chief, quit his job unannounced Tuesday night, and left an email for his staff explaining his reasoning. Among other things, it sounds as though Runcie did not want to be the department’s fall guy in a hearing before the House Oversight Committee.

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The Process – When Good Interviews Go Great

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I conducted an interview this morning that is part of a bigger story I’m working on. I am not at liberty to reveal the details of it yet, but let’s just say this is the first of what will be a series of articles I’m writing on a certain topic.

The interview went really well, and it reminded me of how you can come up with a story idea, go into it thinking one way, and come away from interviews with a different perspective on the topic you are writing about.

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Ben Carson Believes Poverty is Just a ‘State of Mind’

U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

When Sallie Mae calls you next month to collect on your student loans, tell them that your debt is just a state of mind, and you actually don’t owe them a thing.

Read Ben Carson Thinks Poverty is Just a ‘State of Mind’ Passed Down From Parents to Their Children

Sheriff David Clarke’s Reported Plagiarism, and NOT People Dying in His Jail, May Keep Him From Trump Administration Job

Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke, Jr. (MIKE THEILER/AFP/Getty Images)

After a media outlet reported on plagiarism in his master’s degree thesis paper, Sheriff David Clarke is unsure of his standing with the Trump administration and whether or not he will actually get that job with the Department of Homeland Security that he’s been bragging about recently.

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LAPD Officer Gets Slap on the Wrist For Beating a Man Who Was Being Held Down

Screenshot of LA Times video showing officer Clinton Alford Jr. being tackled by police

The Los Angeles police officer who was caught on video kicking, punching, and elbowing a black man who was being held down on the street was sentenced to just two years probation Tuesday as part of a plea deal with prosecutors that has been criticized as being too lenient.

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Good morning.

I’ve been up since 5:30 a.m. preparing to conduct one of the biggest interviews of my journalism career.

This is huge.

I was talking to my best friend last night about being fulfilled by the pursuit of our dreams, and living our best life because we are following our own paths.

Today is definitely a landmark event along those lines.

I am eternally grateful for the blessings and opportunities that continue to come up for me.

I promise to continue to do good work and be a representation of meaningful, ethical journalism.

Let’s all have a great day.

On the importance of time

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I took time out of my day yesterday to go to the nail shop for my long overdue mani/pedi. I normally go every two weeks, but because I’ve been so busy with reporting and writing, I hadn’t been in a month.

As I sat there getting my services, I found myself constantly watching the clock. I had blocked the time off on my calendar, and I stuck to my appointment, but I only allowed an hour to be in the shop, which is normally how quickly they can get me in and out.

The man who usually does my manicure was not there, and another woman did the work in his place, and she was a little on the slow side, so what is normally a 60-minute service turned into a 90-minute service, and all I could think about was how that was going to throw my entire day off.

I’ve gotten into the habit of blocking things off on my schedule every day. If there is something that I have to do, it goes on the schedule, and I make a set time for it.

That nail appointment threw my afternoon schedule off yesterday. I recovered, because if nothing else, I’ve learned to be adaptable, but as I was lying in bed last night, I thought about how paranoid I got when they started going over the allotted time.

I flash back to a conversation I had with my best friend about how we get 86,400 seconds each day, and it’s the kind of bank account that you can only withdraw from, but not add to.

I’m growing to a point where I don’t want to waste the funds in that account. I want to make every second, minute, and hour of my day count in some substantial way.

I don’t feel guilty about the 90 minutes I spent in the nail shop. That’s a form of self care that I will not turn away from; I love pretty feet and hands, and they make me feel good about myself.

I’m just glad that the trip to the nail shop made me remember how important my time is to me, and furthered my resolve to not waste any of it.

A Black Attorneys Group and the New Black Panther Party Are Demanding a Life Sentence For Michael Slager

Former North Charleston Police Officer Michael Slager

Former North Charleston Police Officer Michael Slager (Grace Beahm-Pool/Getty Images)

A Washington-based Black attorneys group is demanding that former North Charleston Police Officer Michael Slager be given a life sentence in his federal case for the shooting death of unarmed Black motorist Walter Scott in 2015. Continue reading

People Gather For Two Demonstrations in OKC After Betty Shelby is Found Not Guilty

Tulsa PD Officer Betty Shelby

Betty Shelby (Tulsa, Okla., County Jail)

The weekend after Tulsa Police Officer Betty Shelby was found not guilty of manslaughter in the shooting death of unarmed black motorist Terence Crutcher, people gathered for rallies in Oklahoma City on two separate days to say “Black Lives Matter.”

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#Flint: ‘NOVA’ Will Explore the Chemistry and Engineering Behind the Water Crisis

Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

The Public Broadcasting Service program NOVA, the most-watched science series on American television, will air an episode looking at the chemistry and engineering behind the three-year-old lead-contaminated water crisis in Flint, Michigan.

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British Prime Minister Raises Nation’s Threat Level Amid Fears Another Attack ‘May Be Imminent’

British Prime Minister Theresa May

Photo by Ben Birchall/Pool – Getty Images

British Prime Minister Theresa May raised the nation’s threat level Tuesday night, saying another attack “may be imminent,” just one night after a bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, left 22 people dead.

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Former CIA Director Alerted FBI to Pattern of Contacts Between Russian Officials and Trump Campaign Associates

Alex Wong/Getty Images

Former CIA Director John Brennan testified on Tuesday that his agency alerted the FBI to a troubling pattern of contacts between Russian officials and Trump campaign associates last year, adding himself to the long list of people who have expressed suspicions or concerns about the President’s Russian connections.

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Every day I have these random moments of “Oh my god! I love my life!” and “I’m really out here living my dream!” It’s so surreal.

These moments both lift me up and keep me grounded. They are a constant reminder of how abundant the universe is, and how much more there is out there to grab hold of.

There is room and space for all of us. I am conscious of this, and it keeps me from worrying about what the next person is doing. My focus is on me, my goals, and my dreams, and that is where it should be.

I concentrate on my blessings and not the minor problems that pop up, and I never operate from a space of lack, because I know that as long as I am doing my part, the universe will continue to provide.

I wasn’t always in this space, so the personal growth is not lost on me.

I just keep reaching, ever higher, and ever evolving.

 

For Creatives Who Can’t Get Out of Bed In The Morning Because They Stay Up All Night Being Creative

Monique with a cup of coffee

i definitely am a coffee snob

Dear coffee: You complete me.

I didn’t get up as early as I would have liked this morning, but in my defense, I was up late working and plotting, so the coffee is going to get me through for right now.

The important thing is I have not wasted one moment this morning with procrastination. I am learning how much of a time thief procrastination is, and I’m determined to not let it rob me ever again.

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Your President Really Hates Poor People

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 19: Copies of President Trump’s FY’18 budget books are stacked, at the Government Publishing Office, on May 19, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Donald Trump’s new budget proposal will be reveals that he really and truly hates poor people. It comes with major cuts to Medicaid and changes to anti-poverty programs that would allow states to limit a range of benefits for needy families, something that Congress has already been uneasy about.

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