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Derek Shackelford

December 21, 2012
Crossing The Color Line! Lesson Learned
Derek Shackelford

While there are myriad issues in the world in which we live that need to be addressed, what may affect us directly is the one we place at the top of the priority ladder.

December 14, 2012
Life’s Tragedy In Perspective
Derek Shackelford

We live in an information age. Now whether the information is true or not is another story. Competition to be first exists among media conglomerates, blogospheres and social media.

November 19, 2012
Learning for One’s Mistakes
Derek Shackelford

I must acknowledge I have stayed away from writing about presidential politics intentionally. I have stayed engaged in following the various campaigns by reading newspapers and blogs, participated in dialogues through social media and discussed it in various platforms among my circle of friends and colleagues.

July 31, 2012
Life’s Lessons at Penn State
Derek Shackelford

If you like college sports such as golf, gymnastics, soccer and swimming, then you probably like college football because – at many of the large universities, football is the engine that drives the rest of its athletic programs.

July 4, 2012
Down the Glory Path to Intense Scrutiny
Derek Shackelford

Everybody loves a winner. It is true that there are some valuable lessons in losing, but the fact remains that everybody wants to be associated with a winner.

May 29, 2012
Gay Marriage: What does it means for the church?
Derek Shackelford

As the summer heats up so it appears that our presidential politics is doing as well. It is not just enough that President Barack Obama has to govern this nation, but he has to campaign for the fall election also.

March 27, 2012
Racial or not, it’s tragic
Derek Shackelford

There is no doubt that we live in a dangerous world. Service men and women place themselves in harm’s way daily to secure the freedom we enjoy.

February 17, 2012
The Clash of Legacy and Loyalty
Derek Shackelford

Fame comes with a price. Sometimes that price is too difficult to calculate. It is not out of the ordinary for human beings to want to be loved and appreciated.

January 13, 2012
Controversial Tebow Brings Faith to Light
Derek Shackelford

There is probably no other subject discussed that will bring various views of opinions such as religion. It can cause us as a society and world the propensity to defend it, practice it, or surmise no usefulness whatsoever.

October 24, 2011
Raising Its Ugly Head Again…
Derek Shackelford

Politics will solicit many opinions. One does not have to be a politician to have a thought about the political process.

September 16, 2011
Listen to This, Mr. President!
Derek Shackelford

Slogans used by politicians are nothing new. They are part of the formula to capture attention; and; if one cannot remember anything else, the catchy phrase usually works.


August 5, 2011
Keeping Score
Derek Shackelford

Intercollegiate athletics is big business. It’s time to stop acting like money does not play a significant role in collegiate sports.

July 11, 2011
Controversial Spokesman Resigned
Derek Shackelford

Nike, Inc., is a sportswear company that specializes in apparel that includes sneakers, t-shirts, shorts, shoes, plus a whole lot more. When it comes to selling sports apparel, Nike is the leader. Its creativity in advertising its product is second to none.

March 17, 2011
A Proper Perspective
Derek Shackelford

March Madness has begun. That is the given name to the next three weeks of the college basketball season. This moniker is provided because of the passion that coaches, fans and players display over the games that will be played.

February 4, 2011
Super Bowl Quandary
Derek Shackelford

I preface my remarks by saying that I like the Pittsburgh Steelers – well, check that – love the Pittsburgh Steelers. It is true that I will be rooting front and center for them Sunday in Super Bowl XLV.

January 28, 2011
The Real Dr. King
Derek Shackelford

Holidays named to honor people are reminders of the significant impact that they have had on others and the world at large. It has been two weeks since this nation has celebrated the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., holiday, one such honoree.

December 23, 2010
Comparing Decisions
Derek Shackelford

There is something about sports and, in particular, certain athletes who may make the casual observer express their opinion. Two athletes over this past year have not only grabbed the sports spotlight but they have infiltrated some of the mainstream media headlines.

September 21, 2010
Is he, or isn’t he?
Derek Shackelford

Sometimes I do not know whether to laugh or cry over some of the discussions that take place within our political discourse. It appears that vision is so lacking when it comes to the direction within this country.

July 29, 2010
About Right and Wrong
Derek Shackelford

Uh Oh! This is just a false alarm. No need to panic. Everyone can now go back to their regular scheduled program until the next time someone says something on video where only snippets are viewed and not the whole tape.

July 15, 2010
Decisions and Reality TV
Derek Shackelford

Reality Television really has a huge audience in our current culture. We perceive to be a society where the public display of people’s lives paraded before television intrigues us.

July 1, 2010
Ken Griffey, Jr., All Star
Derek Shackelford

Baseball has been called America’s pastime. There are many reasons for this depending upon the sources drawn from.  One reason is that baseball has brought families together for the enjoyment of playing and watching the sport together.

June 10, 2010
A Man of Accomplishment
Derek Shackelford

Life is filled with transition. No one stays on top forever. What comes up must come down. No matter how long someone is at their best, our hope is that they will always stay there.

April 29, 2010
Tea Partiers and Illegal Immigration
Derek Shackelford

Just a couple of weeks ago Tea Party rallies were held across the country to oppose some of the proponents of government spending and intrusion. Rightly Tea Partiers believe government is not the answer to all of individual or societal problems. And if those in government thinks that it is and everyone can be on equal footing, then some would pronounce this to be socialism.

April 1, 2010
Not quite what you’d expect…
Derek Shackelford

The sky is falling! The sky is falling! The sky is falling! That is what some would have us to believe. The problem in this is not in reference to the recent passage of the healthcare law. More on that later. No, this inference of the sky is falling has to do with a recent Harris Poll of Republican attitudes toward President Barack Obama.

March 18, 2010
What Price Glory?
Derek Shackelford

Fame comes with a price. It will cost all of us something. The prices are different in each circumstance. In many instances the price is constant media attention.

March 4, 2010
An Opposing View…
Derek Shackelford

As a columnist it is an honor and a privilege to share my respective views. It can be rather difficult sometimes to articulate them, putting pen to paper. One could say it would be easier to express opinions via another medium.

February 18, 2010
Tea Party Perspective…
Derek Shackelford

I must admit I am not a follower of the Tea Party movement. This does not mean that I cannot look at it objectively. I am not a follower in terms of believing all of its principles.

February 4, 2010
Obama, Blaine Young, and The Super Bowl
Derek Shackelford

How long would it last? Now that didn’t take long. Much of this nation was tuned into President Barack Obama’s first State of the Union address. With the myriad of problems that this country is facing, many wanted to hear the solutions that would decrease the deficit, lower unemployment, health care reform, and the abuses on Wall Street.

January 29, 2010
Changing Politics, Harry Reid and A Fool
Derek Shackelford

The political landscape changed last week according to the pundits. The election of Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate forced the Democrats to relinquish their 60 seat stronghold.

December 18, 2009
Descent and Recovery
Derek Shackelford

The details continue. Great journalists must be really having a difficult time finding quality in this era. Why? The constant bombardment and stream of salacious detail reporting.

December 11, 2009
Exploring The Questions? Seeking The Answers!
Derek Shackelford


This nation currently finds itself in two wars, one in Afghanistan and one in Iraq. A large part of the discussion has centered on achieving victory. The problem with contemplating strategy appears to be what is victory or what does victory look like.

December 4, 2009
Tiger by The Tail…
Derek Shackelford

Tiger Woods is arguably the most famous athlete in the entire world. Heck, he might even be the most recognizable person in the entire world. All because he can play a game called golf.

November 25, 2009
A Plus, A Minus, and Thanks
Derek Shackelford

Former Vice-Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin is currently on a cross county tour promoting her book, “Going Rogue.” She has recently made the rounds on many of the most popular television shows, The Oprah Winfrey Show, an interview with Barbara Walter, The Sean Hannity Show, and many of the morning news programs.

November 13, 2009
The Path Not Taken…
Derek Shackelford

Thomas “Tip” O’Neill, former Speaker of the House of Representatives, once coined the phrase, “All politics is local.” This can be interpreted to mean politicians should be able to understand their local constituents and the policies that affect them the most – the local political issues.

October 30, 2009
Limbaugh, Freedom and The NFL
Derek Shackelford

Several weeks ago talk show host Rush Limbaugh garnered national headlines with his participation in an ownership group attempting to purchase the National Football League’s St. Louis Rams. Mr. Limbaugh was not going to be the majority owner just a partner in the ownership group.

October 21, 2009
The Main Thing
Derek Shackelford

It has been 10 months since Barack Obama took the oath of office as President of the United States. He has been under tremendous scrutiny ever since.

October 31, 2008
Making My Selection…
Derek Shackelford

There are currently six candidates vying for the President of the United States. Two of the candidates have garnered much of the national media attention and are a part of the two primary political parties.

October 24, 2008
Beyond The Racial Divide
Derek Shackelford

Well, it is almost upon us. Everything that has been said and conjured up will come to a screeching halt on November 4th. That is when the real politics will begin.

September 26, 2008
Making A Wise Choice
Derek Shackelford

Okay, it has been weeks since the glitz and glamour, the pomp and circumstances, the cartwheels, boos over the “other” name and cheers for it as well just because someone delivered a good punch line.


August 11, 2008
They’re Not Just Athletes…
Derek Shackelford

Last Friday the 2008 Summer Olympics games opened in Beijing, China, where the government has come under scrutiny because of proclaimed human rights violations. The air quality – to some degree – has been deemed unhealthy. The government has been criticized for neglect of some of its citizens and the economic disparity is widely known. And its capital punishment policy has been questioned.


May 6, 2008
Another View of “Wright”
Derek Shackelford

This last week of the primary presidential election season has not been about politics. It has more exemplified a mini-drama series.

April 1, 2008
In The Preacher’s Defense
Derek Shackelford

So far this presidential election has developed many subplots. They – if we are not careful as voters – will take us away from the important issues that affect this nation.

January 21, 2008
Dr. King’s Call
Derek Shackelford
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is arguably the greatest orator of the last 50 years in America. Today portions of some of his Speeches will be played to celebrate the federal holiday celebrating his birth.

September 27, 2007
Rearing Its Ugly Head Again
Derek Shackelford
Here we go again with the issue of race surfacing over the last couple of weeks. It is not enough that much attention was given to shock jock Don Imus and his comments about the Rutgers women's basketball team. The outrage that those comments garnered caused Mr. Imus to lose his national morning radio program.

August 13, 2007
For The Good of The Game
Derek Shackelford
There are many calls by sports announcers that will make a great moment more memorable. The announcers that distinguish themselves are the truly special ones that know how to capture a thrilling moment.

August 9, 2007
Enlightenment in Africa - Part Three
Derek Shackelford
The time had come for us to tour Senegal, in particular Dakar. As we traveled around, one of the most prevalent concerns was road conditions. They were fair at best. The ones that were paved did not make transportation easy. Others were gravel. We traveled by bus.

August 8, 2007
Enlightenment in Africa - Part Two
Derek Shackelford
Writing this has already extracted some feelings and observations regarding the immersion experience. I would also like to reflect theologically on the experience with regards to the villages, conversations that transpired between the natives, and personal reflections.

August 7, 2007
Enlightenment in Africa - Part One
Derek Shackelford
Last May I had the unique opportunity to make a pilgrimage to Africa. The trip was sponsored by Rev. Ernest D. Lyles, the founder of El Shaddai International.

April 23, 2007
"What's Going On?"
Derek Shackelford
Yesterday I was having a flashback and popped in my Marvin Gaye CD. Why I had decided to listen to Marvin Gaye on this particular occasion I could not answer. I think I just wanted to hear something with a nice beat.

February 5, 2007
Love of Country and History Made
Derek Shackelford
The medical profession says that one way to prevent disease and poor health is to get a yearly physical examination. This yearly check-up can prevent disease, or, at least, catch them in early stages.

January 15, 2007
Sounding The Alarm
Derek Shackelford
As the national holiday in memory of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., takes place today, one of the questions I ask myself is where do I/we go from here?

November 21, 2006
Honor and The Struggle
Derek Shackelford
As we get older we look back and see if we have lived with any regrets. As we come into a deeper understanding, we take inventory of what we have learned and how we can maximize our time on earth.

November 2, 2006
Steele v. Cardin: Who's the Champ?
Derek Shackelford
Maryland voters will select a new senator during this mid-term election. This contest has some interesting twists and turns.

September 25, 2006
Myriad Questions Abound
Derek Shackelford
There has been discussion recently concerning President George W. Bush's speech on September 11th, 2006. As this country remembered the catastrophic events of five years ago, I felt compassion for those who lost loved ones. I do not like to call it an anniversary because an anniversary should be something that is celebrated.

September 15, 2006
Unanswered Questions
Derek Shackelford
As the primary election is now over, the focus now turns to the general election on November 7. One of the more compelling races in the State of Maryland is the Senate race.

August 22, 2006
Why Not Permanent?
Derek Shackelford
As the national mid-term and local elections descend upon us, voters will decide which officeholders will serve in their respective positions. They will be exercising their right to cast a ballot for the politician of their choice.

June 16, 2006
Marriage and The Fear Factor
Derek Shackelford
Reality TV is very popular these days. It is not classified as a comedy, drama, or sitcom. It is called Reality TV because the viewer may somehow be able to relate to the persons on the other side of the television screen.

May 23, 2006
Chasing The Leader
Derek Shackelford
Sometime soon Barry Bonds will move into second place on the all time home run list. No one can even turn on a major news channel, pick up a newspaper, or listen to the radio without some mention of Mr. Bonds and the daily reports of how he did at the dish.

April 18, 2006
The Dividing Line
Derek Shackelford
As this country grows more diverse by the day, sensitive issues arise. Several of these issues have come to the surface over the past few weeks.

March 31, 2006
The New Patriots
Derek Shackelford
Sports can be an excellent metaphor for life. The attraction is global. Much of our sporting events are televised globally. We have the Summer and Winter Olympics in which many nations and countries participate.

March 14, 2006
The Race Card and Leadership
Derek Shackelford
Recently the Associated Press and the America On Line Black Voices website conducted a survey on who is the nation's most important black leader. The two who received the most support were the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson and Condoleeza Rice, the current Secretary of State.

February 6, 2006
A Shining Example for The World
Derek Shackelford
I awoke early last Tuesday morning to hear some shocking news. I try to start the day with as much positive energy as I can, knowing that at anytime things could change. That change occurred very early as I heard that Coretta Scott King had passed away.

January 16, 2006
And Miles To Go..
Derek Shackelford
Today is a national holiday. It is not just a day off from work, a day to catch the latest sales, or a day just to lounge around our homes.

November 18, 2005
Stand and Deliver
Derek Shackelford
About a month ago the Million More Movement was held in Washington, D.C. It came on the 10th Anniversary of the historic Million Man March.

September 9, 2005
What Will Be Our Response?
Derek Shackelford
There has been - and continues to be - countless hours of news coverage on the Hurricane Katrina catastrophe. For those who have not witnessed the destruction first hand, the only means of identifying with this ordeal is through the print and visual media.

August 11, 2005
Of Money, The NFL, and The Supreme Court
Derek Shackelford
As National Football League training camps conclude their second week, there has been much discussion and debate over contracts. That's right, as in the movie "Jerry Maguire," players are shouting "show me the money."

March 30, 2005
March Madness Here At Home
Derek Shackelford
It is said that all politics is local and from that standpoint, the political landscape around our region proves the point. The city, county, and federal backdrop could all benefit from a dose of common sense, however. But, of course, sense has never been common, which leaves, for the most part, a consistency of irrational behavior.

February 22, 2005
Broaden The Discussion
Derek Shackelford
The issue of morality came front and center during the last presidential election, putting domestic and foreign issues on the back burner.

January 17, 2005
Has The Dream Become Reality?
Derek Shackelford
Today our nation celebrates the birthday of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Every passing year the question arises: Is his dream turning into more of a reality or more of a day off from work?

December 24, 2004
I Remember Christmases Past and...
Derek Shackelford
Christmas brings back so many wonderful memories when I was a child. Children for the most part, you see, are innocent in terms of how we have commercialization the Christmas season.

November 4, 2004
A Time for Thanks
Derek Shackelford
The election of 2004 has been decided and President Bush has been reelected. As the evening hours passed on Tuesday night, there was much in the balance in Ohio.

October 29, 2004
Candidates Need To Answer THE Question
Derek Shackelford
Earlier this week the Democratic Party candidate for President, Senator John Kerry, made most front page newspapers and led newscasts by appearing with former President Bill Clinton.

October 22, 2004
The River Runs In Both Directions
Derek Shackelford
As this nation heads toward the Presidential Election of 2004, I have to agree with most honest political pundits on the divisiveness in America. It is obvious there are two different visions for this country. The voters can decide on which particular vision is best.

October 7, 2004
Grasping At the Proverbial Straw
Derek Shackelford
As the upcoming presidential election heads quickly into this nation's future, one thing appears certain: this country is divided. The debate last week articulated the divergent views of President George W. Bush and Senator John Kerry.

July 16, 2004
Everybody Plays a Fool Sometime
Derek Shackelford
I have waited to participate in the debate of Michael Moore's film Fahrenheit 9/11. I felt it would be only appropriate to view the film before offering an intellectual opinion.

June 18, 2004
To The Once and Future Father
Derek Shackelford
On November 11th, 2002, I became the father of a precious baby boy named Derin. Anyone who has experienced the joy of fatherhood knows it can be a life-changing event.

June 3, 2004
Agreeing To Disagree
Derek Shackelford
Recently during the anniversary celebration of Brown v. Board of Education of Wichita held at Constitution Hall in Washington, philanthropist and comedian Bill Cosby made some remarks which overshadowed the historic celebration.

May 14, 2004
Sweep up the Debris
Derek Shackelford
As a contributing writer to this website, I feel very fortunate to articulate views on different subjects and issues. It is not always easy to convey messages to readers who disagree with the position that is being taken.

April 23, 2004
"Passion" Film Raises Serious Questions
Derek Shackelford
The movie The Passion of the Christ by Mel Gibson has caused quite a stir regarding the factual information depicted in the movie.

April 14, 2004
Whose Truth Do You Believe?
Derek Shackelford
National Security Advisor Dr. Condoleeza Rice appeared before the Congressional 9/11 Commission last Thursday. She testified poignantly, calmly, and with dignity. May I add that under the circumstances, she answered each question with confidence despite the barrage thrown at her by commission members.

March 31, 2004
Where Does The Truth Lie?
Derek Shackelford
When the Congressional 9-11 Commission submits a report on the testimonies it has received, it will be very difficult to ferret out the truth. Partisan politics has dominated the notion of this War on Terror.

February 10, 2004
The Pot Calling The Kettle Black
Derek Shackelford
On February 1, a great football game took place between the Carolina Panthers and the New England Patriots of The National Football League. They called it The Super Bowl. And the game was just that.

January 19, 2004
So Much In So Little Time
Derek Shackelford
On this national holiday celebrating the birth of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we realize that he would have been 75 years of age. In taking a retrospective look at his life, we see that this man accomplished a great deal in his lifetime. It does not matter the length of life, but the quality in which we live our lives.

November 28, 2003
Be Thankful For What You Have - and Give Back
Derek Shackelford
The reality of professional sports’ impact on our culture is an understatement. Pro Sports play a large role in our everyday living.

October 24, 2003
Need A New Leader? Look In The Mirror!
Derek Shackelford
Recently the United States Congress allocated $87 billion for the reconstruction project in Iraq. Most of the financial resources will go to support the troops. I truly and honestly believe that our armed forces should have all the necessary tools at their disposal.

June 5, 2003
Help Along The Road Of Life
Derek Shackelford
High school phenom Lebron James will, in all likelihood, be the selected No. 1 in this month’s NBA draft. The Cleveland Cavaliers garnered the first pick via lottery in the middle of May.

March 19, 2003
Be Careful In Choosing Your Friends
Derek Shackelford
As we embark on this war with Iraq, many perspectives have been drawn for the disarmament of Saddam Hussein.

January 20, 2003
Well, Dr. King, The Promised Land Is Still Ahead
Derek Shackelford
As we approach this national holiday celebrating the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the question that must be remembered is whether his dream is still alive or is it a dream deferred?

December 31, 2002
The Democrats Have Lost Their Direction
Derek Shackelford
I have abstained from writing a column since July of this year. This break has allowed for a time of reflection on what is happening in our world around us. After all of the hoopla surrounding this past election year, one can now make an assessment on the individuals selected to make our political decisions. We can also assess our local, state, and national political landscape.

July 22, 2002
America Must Live Up To Its Ideals
Derek Shackelford
Recently the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in California ruled parts of the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional. One would think living in America that the phrase "with liberty and justice for all" could be a point of disagreement, considering the history of this country.

June 17, 2002
Local NAACP Branch Shall Keep Moving Forward
Derek Shackelford
The other day while riding the Metro, I noticed few passengers aboard the train. This drew comparisons to the startup of the Frederick County Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

January 8, 2002
Finally! Success! The Second Time Around
Derek Shackelford

Recently the University Of Notre Dame hired a football coach. In fact, they hired two.

We all make mistakes and this is exactly what the University Of Notre Dame did when it first hired George O'Leary. Nothing personal against O'Leary, he has done a fine job at Georgia Tech. When O' Leary falsified information regarding his athletic and educational achievements, he put Notre Dame in a serious fix. Not to mention that Notre Dame did not find about this until after O'Leary had been hired as the football coach.

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