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Deborah Simmons

Deborah Simmons

Award-winning opinion writer Deborah Simmons is a senior correspondent who reports on City Hall and writes about education, culture, sports and family-related topics. Mrs. Simmons has worked at several newspapers, and since joining The Washington Times in 1985, has served as editorial-page editor and features editor and on the metro desk. She has taught copy editing at the University of Maryland at College Park.

An occasional panelist on Roland Martin's “Washington Watch” and Denise Rolark Barnes' “Let's Talk” weekly news analysis cable-TV programs, Mrs. Simmons has also appeared on BET's “Lead Story,” “Real Time with Bill Maher” and Mr. Maher's “Politically Incorrect,” “America's Black Forum,” Fox News' “The O'Reilly Factor,” “The Right Side with Armstrong Williams,” C-SPAN's “Washington Journal,” and “This is America with Dennis Wholey.” She also has been a guest radio commentator on NPR, WAMU, WMAL and WOL.

Mrs. Simmons attended the University of the District of Columbia and Trinity College. She and her husband, who live in Washington, have four children and two grandchildren. Contact Mrs. Simmons at [email protected].


Articles by Deborah Simmons

In this Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017 photo, an undercover sheriff's deputy talks to a man who pulled over to talk with her in Compton, Calif., a city some 15 miles south of Los Angeles.  (AP Photo/Reed Saxon) **FILE**

Sex, lies and idiocy

The D.C. Council is pondering legislation that would decriminalize prostitution. If passed, there might still be prostitutes walking K Street and other D.C. corridors popular to the sex trade. D.C. lawmakers say their legislative intent is take create a safe working environment for, well, sex workers by removing criminal penalties and reducing their vulnerability to exploitation and violence. Published June 10, 2019

In this Feb. 26, 2018, file photo, District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine, attends a news conference near the White House in Washington.  A spokesman for President Donald Trump's inaugural committee has confirmed on Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019, that Racine's office has subpoenaed financial records from the committee regarding the $107 million the committee raised to hold inaugural events. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

To combat D.C. homelessness, fight residency fraud first

D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine announced Wednesday morning that the city is suing six Maryland parents for fraudulently claiming D.C. residency so they could send their children to D.C. public schools. Published June 6, 2019

 In this April 2, 2019, file photo, House Oversight and Reform Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) ** FILE **

The D.C. statehood vote that counts

Supporters for making the District of Columbia the 51st state are happy because the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has scheduled a hearing for July 24, when Americans everywhere and in the throes of planning for their summer fun and back-to-school routines -- not beating a drum for D.C. statehood, or Donald Trump, for that matter. Published May 30, 2019

In addition to lowering costs, D.C. Council chairman Phil Mendelson said his revision would meet Mayor Muriel Bowser's schedule for closing the former D.C. General Hospital, which has been used as a temporary homeless shelter for more than a decade. (The Washington Times) **FILE**

D.C. hospital plan is wacky

Here's the dilemma: The government of the District of Columbia does not know how to own and efficiently and effectively manage a public hospital. It has tried at least five times, and failed in each attempt. Instead of conceding defeat, it's trying a fifth time. Published May 27, 2019

When Pelosi's House ignores D.C.

When Republicans and Democrats snipe at each other over spending, the hype is par for the discourse in Washington. Published May 23, 2019

In this April 18, 2019, photo Broderick Hansen is held by his mother Jennifer Hansen as Kristen Sklenar delivers a measles vaccine in Omaha, Neb. (Kent Sievers/Omaha World-Herald via AP) **FILE**

Educating the masses about vaccinations

If we really and truly want to curb the current measles outbreak and better educate U.S. residents about vaccinations in general, why not use our good ol' reliable, trusty dusty Postal Service? Published May 20, 2019

FILE - This March 23, 2018 file photo shows an envelope containing a 2018 census letter mailed to a U.S. resident as part of the nation's only test run of the 2020 Census. As the U.S. Supreme Court weighs whether the Trump administration can ask people if they are citizens on the 2020 Census, the Census Bureau is quietly seeking comprehensive information about the legal status of millions of immigrants. (AP Photo/Michelle R. Smith, File)

Are you a U.S. citizen?

This burning question was put to the Supreme Court: Will the 2020 census ask whether a respondent is a U.S. citizen? Published May 16, 2019

A voter marks a ballot for the New Hampshire primary inside a voting booth at a polling place Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016, in Manchester, N.H. (AP Photo/David Goldman) ** FILE **

Is U.S. ready for 2020 elections?

There was a time when blacks weren't permitted to vote in America, and the truth and consequences of even trying to vote are etched in the nation's history and Americans' memories. Published May 13, 2019

Opponents of a proposal to makes changes to the sex education guidance for teachers, rallied at the Capitol Wednesday, May 8, 2019, in Sacramento, Calif. The California State Board of Education is set to vote Wednesday on new guidance for teaching sex education in public schools. The guidance is not mandatory but it gives teachers ideas about how to teach a wide range of health topic including speaking to children about gender identity. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli) **FILE**

Parents can't be ignorant of their child's sexual education

One of the reasons kids, teens and adults know more about sex and sexual relations is because parents shirk their responsibilities: 1., by not accepting their responsibility to be their children's first teachers, and 2., by not paying attention to what their children's teachers are and are not teaching. Published May 9, 2019

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker speaks during an Iowa Democratic Party Black Caucus Reception, Tuesday, April 16, 2019, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

The election 2020 gunfight

The Fat Lady can't even begin to think about what dress rehearsal for election night will look like in 2020 — perhaps a politically correct rainbow affair for the inclusive crowd or a crimson gown for the conservatives. Published May 6, 2019

In this Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019, photo, Tyler Schwecke, a delivery driver for Jimmy John's, gets in his car to make a delivery in Las Vegas. Food delivery services like Uber Eats and GrubHub are taking off like a rocket, but some restaurants aren't on board. This week, Jimmy John's sandwich chain launched a national ad campaign promising never to use third-party delivery. (AP Photo/John Locher) **FILE**

Food delivery for school lunch a safety risk

The kids like the convenience. But what they are not thinking about is the safety risks -- strangers on campus, vehicular and pedestrian accidents, poisoned foods, distracted authorities. Published May 2, 2019

Federal Bureau of Investigation, and  Internal Revenue Service agents search the home of Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh in Baltimore, MD., Thursday, April 25, 2019. Agents with the FBI and IRS are gathering evidence inside the two homes of Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh and in City Hall. (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun via AP) **FILE**

Political shenanigans can dash hopes of people who need help the most

Politicians often have good intentions, creating programs that simultaneously offer a hand up and a hand out. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't. The city of Baltimore's did not work, and its failure at stringent oversight and accountability by city authorities is why. Published April 29, 2019

In this Dec. 6, 2016, file photo, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh delivers an address during her inauguration ceremony inside the War Memorial Building in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

Catherine Pugh must relinquish her position

When men and women wearing jackets identifying themselves as agents of the FBI or IRS or police or sheriff, your best defense is to read whatever court documents they proffer, open your door and grant them access. Published April 25, 2019

District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser pauses during a news conference at One Judiciary Square in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) ** FILE **

Bolster school choice

You don't have to be a top chef to know that, like oil and water, President Trump and left-of-center Democrats don't go well together — and that sensitive palates find the taste of anchovies yucky. Published April 22, 2019

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe delivers his final "State of the Commonwealth" address to the General Assembly at the Capitol in Richmond, Va., Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. (Bob Brown/Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP) **FILE**

Terry McAuliffe and the Democrats' 2020 strategy

American voters should get to know or reacquaint themselves with Terry McAuliffe. He's the Democratic Party's don and king who seemingly doesn't take the money and run but makes sure his own pockets runneth over. Published April 18, 2019

Democratic presidential candidate and former Texas congressman Beto O'Rourke speaks during a campaign event in Sioux City, Iowa, on Thursday, April 4, 2019. (Justin Wan/Sioux City Journal via AP) **FILE**

Term limits would drain the swamp

As the "Democratic Demolition Coalition" grows, another group of get-out-the-vote movers and shakers is on the move, too. Supporters of term limits are making their voices heard. One of them is James Baker, who lost to D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser in the 2018 Democratic primary and was a write-in candidate in the general election. Published April 11, 2019

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, left, and Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford speak at a news conference in Annapolis, Md., Monday, April 8, 2019, the final day of the state's 2019 legislative session. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark) **FILE**

Larry Hogan's smart BW Parkway push

Enter Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, who is so fed up with the NPS ignoring the dangerous and gridlocked realities of the Baltimore-Washington Parkway that he has urged the state's congressional delegation into action. Published April 8, 2019