Top 5 Live-WURD Tuesday April 14
1. Marco Rubio announces that he’s running for president
Senator Marco Rubio of Florida formally announced on Monday that he is running for president, declaring that he is the best person to lead the United States into “another American century.”
Rubio made his formal announcement during a speech in Miami, presenting himself as the man who can unite the Republican Party’s factions and offer economic solutions for the 21st century.
At 43, he is the youngest candidate in the 2016 presidential field. He cast himself as a forward-looking, next-generation leader — and an implicit contrast with both Jeb Bush, 62, whose family has dominated Republican politics for nearly three decades, and Hillary Rodham Clinton, 67, the wife of a former president and the most likely Democratic nominee.
“Too many of our leaders and our ideas are stuck in the 20th Century,” Rubio said.
2. Mom accused of leaving quadriplegic son outside is hospitalized
A woman accused of dumping her quadriplegic son in the woods so she could spend the week with her out-of-state boyfriend was hospitalized Monday for a third day in Maryland while Philadelphia police awaited her release to arrest her.
Nyia Parler has been hospitalized for undisclosed reasons since late Friday, just hours after her 21-year-old son was found in a pile of wet leaves, next to his wheelchair and a Bible, authorities said.
Police believe he had been there all week — exposed to the cold, rainy weather and to wild animals. He was found around the corner from his home by a person who saw the wheelchair and went to investigate.
The son, who has cerebral palsy, remained in stable condition Monday at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia after being treated for dehydration, malnutrition and abrasions.
3. Philly schools to outsource subs
The Philadelphia School District is outsourcing management of its substitute-teaching services, effectively privatizing more than 1,000 jobs now held by unionized workers to save money and improve the “fill rate,” officials said.
The move drew immediate fire from the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, which now represents roughly 1,324 substitutes.
An outraged Jerry Jordan, president of the union, said that the substitute-teacher crisis was manufactured by the district to justify outsourcing, and that some qualified candidates were not being called to fill positions.
He said the PFT had not yet seen the request for proposals, but once it reviewed it, “we will certainly use all legal recourse available to us.”
Last year, just 64 percent of sub jobs were filled every day, impairing the education of thousands of children, said Naomi Wyatt, the district’s human-resources chief. According to school records, roughly 42,000 substitute jobs were never staffed in 2013-14.
4. Mom Charged After Boy, 2, Falls Into Cheetah Pit at Ohio Zoo
A woman accused of holding her 2-year-old son over a railing at a Cleveland zoo when he fell into a cheetah exhibit has been charged with child endangering.
Michelle Schwab, of Delaware, Ohio, was charged Monday in Cleveland Municipal Court.
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo says the toddler’s parents jumped in and pulled him to safety after he fell into the cheetah enclosure Saturday.
Zoo officials say the boy hurt his leg in the fall, but they say the cheetahs didn’t go toward him or his parents.
Schwab couldn’t be reached to comment on the charges. Court records did not say whether she has an attorney and there was no telephone listing for her.
5. Deputy charged with manslaughter in Tulsa police shooting
The Tulsa County deputy who shot and killed a man instead of using his Taser now faces a manslaughter charge.
Video shows Reserve Deputy Robert Bates announcing he is going to deploy his Taser after an undercover weapons sting on April 2, but then shooting Eric Courtney Harris in the back with a handgun.
In a written statement, Tulsa County District Attorney Stephen A. Kunzweiler said Bates is charged with second-degree manslaughter.
Police say Bates thought he pulled out his Taser but “inadvertently” fired his gun. They’ve painted Harris as a dangerous gun dealer who had recently sold methamphetamine to undercover police and who fled while giving the impression that he had a gun in his waistband.
Harris was later determined to be unarmed.
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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of Solomonjones.com and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon