Saturday, January 30, 2010
Thursday, January 28, 2010
From the Huffington Post:
Chris Matthews is definitely going to take some heat for exclaiming that he “forgot [Obama] was black tonight for an hour… I said wait a minute, he’s an African American guy in front of a bunch of other white people.” Matthews was analyzing President Obama’s first State of the Union speech when he made the remark.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
A great deal of Massachusetts’ history is tied to the sea. Because of this, Massachusetts is also known for its lighthouses. Lighthouses were once the trusted tool that guided navigators through treacherous waters enabling them to avoid coastal rocks and running aground. Like the lighthouse, the election to fill the U.S. Senate seat from Massachusetts should serve as a beacon to the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Obama administration.
As the Democrats navigate through these treacherous and rocky political waters, the election of Scott Brown as the Senator to replace Ted Kennedy should serve as a warning to the DNC of the dangers of arrogance, complacency, and disorganization. It should also serve notice to the Obama administration of the dangers of failing to articulate a consistent message and failing to deliver what was promised to your supporters.
First, the DNC should recognize that Scott Brown did not run a great campaign insomuch as Martha Coakley, like Cree Deeds in Virginia, ran a terrible one. Coakley ran an elitist campaign, failing to reach out to the communities that helped to elect Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and President Obama. According to the Boston Globe, “The lapses were particularly noticeable in minority communities, traditionally bastions of Democratic votes, which did not turn out in high numbers…” As a demonstration of her arrogance, Coakley took a week off and vacationed during the campaign. According to The Hill, “Martha Coakley’s New Year’s vacation may reign as one of the costliest political blunders of all time.” Even if you’ve “got it in the bag” you never leave the bag unattended!
Monday, January 25, 2010
PITTSBURGH – The photos taken by Jordan Miles’ mother show his face covered with raw, red bruises, his cheek and lip swollen, his right eye swollen shut. A bald spot mars the long black dreadlocks where the 18-year-old violist says police tore them from his head.
Now, 10 days after plainclothes officers stopped him on a street and arrested him after a struggle that they say revealed a soda bottle under his coat, not the gun they suspected, his right eye is still slightly swollen and bloodshot. His head is shaved. The three white officers who arrested him have been reassigned. And his mother says she is considering a lawsuit.
“I feel that my son was racially profiled,” Terez Miles said. “It’s a rough neighborhood; it was after dark. … They assumed he was up to no good because he’s black. My son, he knows nothing about the streets at all. He’s had a very sheltered life, he’s very quiet, he doesn’t know police officers sit in cars and stalk people like that.”
A judge continued the case until Feb. 18 after the officers failed to appear at a hearing Thursday, Miles’ attorney, Kerrington Lewis, said. The police department is saying little as it investigates, and isn’t releasing the officers’ names.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
The firing of nearly one-quarter of the full-time faculty members at Clark Atlanta University a year go led to an investigation by the American Association of University Professors.
The investigatory committee has just released its report about the sudden termination of 55 faculty member, concluding that the college’s actions were egregious.
Among the findings:
The administration selected the particular faculty members for dismissal without any discernible prior consultation with appropriate faculty bodies. The administration in its selections also paid no heed to the rights of tenured over nontenured faculty with respect to retention.
- By not affording the dismissed faculty members opportunity for a hearing before a body of faculty peers, the Clark Atlanta University administration denied them academic due process to which they were entitled under stated university regulations as well as Association-supported standards.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Historically, marriage was the surest route to financial security for women. Nowadays it's men who are increasingly getting the biggest economic boost from tying the knot, according to a new analysis of census data.
The changes, summarized in a Pew Research Center report being released Tuesday, reflect the proliferation of working wives over the past 40 years — a period in which American women outpaced men in both education and earningsgrowth. A larger share of today's men, compared with their 1970 counterparts, are married to women whose education and income exceed their own, and a larger share of women are married to men with less education and income.
"From an economic perspective, these trends have contributed to a gender role reversal in the gains from marriage," wrote the report's authors, Richard Fry and D'Vera Cohn.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Haiti's musician Wyclef Jean, left, arrives at the airport in Port-au-Prince on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2010, the day after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit his country. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Groups that vet charities are raising doubts about the organization backed by Haitian-born rapper Wyclef Jean, questioning its accounting practices and ability to function in earthquake-hit Haiti.
Even as more than $2 million poured into The Wyclef Jean Foundation Inc. via text message after just two days, experts questioned how much of the money would help those in need.
"It's questionable. There's no way to get around that," said Art Taylor, president and chief executive of the Better Business Bureau's Wise Giving Alliance, based in Arlington, Va.
Taylor reviewed Internal Revenue Service tax returns for the organization also known as Yele Haiti Foundation from 2005 through 2007. He said the first red flag of poor accounting practices was that three years of returns were filed on the same day — Aug. 10 of last year.
In 2007, the foundation's spending exceeded its revenues by $411,000. It brought in just $79,000 that year.click to read.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Michael Eric Dyson, professor of African American studies at Georgetown, addressed the Harry Reid “negro dialect” controversy last night on MSNBC. He criticized Obama for avoiding racial issue.
You ain’t talking about civil rights, you ain’t talking bout affirmative action, you’re not pressing the issue.”
He also said that Barack Obama does not sound Black.
If Barack Obama was standing forth in America to speak brilliantly and courageously about the issues of race, he’d sound a lot more black too.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
From The New York Daily News
Bill Clinton helped sink his wife’s chances for an endorsement from Ted Kennedy by belittling Barack Obama as nothing but a race-based candidate.
“A few years ago, this guy would have been getting us coffee,” the former president told the liberal lion from Massachusetts, according to the gossipy new campaign book, “Game Change.”
The book says Kennedy was deeply offended and recounted the conversation to friends with fury.
After Kennedy sided with Obama, Clinton reportedly griped, “the only reason you are endorsing him is because he’s black. Let’s just be clear.”
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had to backpedal and apologize very quickly for a private conversation he had with Barack Obama during Obama's presidential campaign. In the discussion, Reid stated that Obama could be a successful candidate because he is "light skinned" and that he speaks with "no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one."
Two journalists, Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, made this assertion in a book to be released next Tuesday.
"He [Reid] was wowed by Obama's oratorical gifts and believed that the country was ready to embrace a black presidential candidate, especially one such as Obama - a 'light-skinned' African American 'with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one,' as he said privately. Reid was convinced, in fact, that Obama's race would help him more than hurt him in a bid for the Democratic nomination," they write.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
In terms of President Obama’s ability to articulate and take action on his vision for America in one, year, I would issue a grade of B+. He has motivated millions across the globe to be more charitable, considerate, and reflective on our personal and national interests. Contrastingly, I would personally give him a grade of a C to mark the more free-thinking, activist, and liberal political stance that I thought and hoped he would bring to the White House. Mr. Obama is clearly a centrist and that is a dangerous position to have if his desire is to serve an additional four years. While his pit crew (the people that elected him) are screaming “Open it up! We’ve got your back,” he’s driving his Ferrari 35 mph. Is it a lack of political skill or political will for this seemingly gentle posture? Time will definitely tell. Nonetheless, many Americans remain hopeful for real change with his ideological path of appeasement and consensus-building.
“It is still very early in the criminal investigation of Gilbert Arenas, and many facts are still unclear, however Arenas could be in some trouble. First, Arenas has prior gun-related charges, having plead no contest to a misdemeanor charge of illegally possessing a concealed weapon while in California in 2003. Also, Arenas not only has D.C. authorities to answer to, but possibly Virginia police as well, given that he transported his guns from Virginia into D.C. It has been mentioned that Arenas may not have had proper registration for the guns in question, and also may have lacked a concealed weapons permit. Virginia accepts concealed weapons permits from certain other states, so that could work in Arenas favor if he had a concealed license permit from another state. In addition, even in regards to registered guns, D.C. prohibits guns deemed to be particularly "unsafe", so if any of Arenas' guns fall in that category, it could lead to other charges. It has been reported that all of Arenas' handguns were unloaded, however we do not know if Arenas stored any bullets in his locker also, which could lead to more charges. Some commentators have discussed the idea of Arenas being charged with assault with a deadly weapon, however given the statements made by most who observed the incidents in question, I see that as highly unlikely. The act of Arenas removing the guns from the locker and placing them out in the open (even if unloaded) could be problematic for him as well.
Ultimately, we will know more about what charges Arenas may face in the next few weeks. It is a sad and ridiculous situation, that was completely avoidable with even a little bit of forethought."
No strangers to controversy, the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is up to its old tricks again. This time they've raised eyebrows by using an image of Michelle Obama in an anti-fur advertisement without her permission. The White House is not pleased, to say the least.
The ad in question features the image of the first lady alongside the images of Oprah Winfrey, Tyra Banks, and Carrie Underwood underneath the slogan, "Fur-free and fabulous!" The ads, which PETA says features "a bevy of the smartest, most stylish, and most influential women in America," are being plastered all over the Washington D.C. Metro mass transit system, in addition to appearing in various magazines and websites.
While Winfrey, Banks and Underwood are all on record as publicly endorsing PETA's anti-fur efforts, first lady Michelle Obama cannot endorse special interest groups such as PETA. Thus, the White House is mildly perturbed by the use of the first lady's image in the campaign
Monday, January 4, 2010
by Dr. Julianne Malveaux, President – Bennett College For Women
Had Dr. Martin Luther King lived until his birthday, January 15, he would be 81. It is interesting to speculate how the octogenarian might spend his time. If he is anything like some of his peers - Ambassador Andrew Young or Rev. Joseph Lowery - he'd still be involved in some form of activism, perhaps combining religious service with involvement in domestic and international affairs, perhaps with dimensions that included some involvement in commerce (such as Mr. Young's consulting company Good Works). What might Dr. King think or say about the state we find ourselves in today? A year since the inauguration of President Barack Obama, would he embrace the concept of post-racialism that some bandy about? Would he reflect on his words during the March on Washington and conclude that the dream he so brilliantly articulated had been realized? Or would he be forced to conclude that the check is still marked "insufficient funds".
Sunday, January 3, 2010
Danny Glover recently directed some criticism at President Obama, regarding his lack of action in dealing with issues disproportionately impacting the Black community. President Obama fired back, saying that he was not neglecting Black issues, and that the issues he was being asked to address could not be fixed in one term, much less one year.
So, who is right? I'm not a fence-rider, however in many instances there is truth on both sides of a dispute or issue, and that is the case here. To be accurate, Danny Glover didn't call out President Obama for simply not paying enough attention to Black people; he called him out for his overall policy approach, and it's similarities (in Glover's opinion) to the policies and approach of the Bush administration. This is a fair criticism, for a couple of reasons. Despite the conservative media's protests to the contrary, Obama ran as a moderate, and that is basically what he is on most issues (if you don't think so, compare Obama's campaign platform to that of Dennis Kucinich or John Edwards). Former President Bush, although a Republican, was also considered a moderate (too moderate for many Republicans) on many issues. So, it is no surprise that President Obama may look similar to President Bush in his views and actions on some issues (most obviously in his war policy). I'm not saying I like it, but that is the reality. This is not an issue new to our current President, or to politics as a whole. Many (especially those who argue for the need of a strong third-party in American politics) have made the argument that there is little difference between Republicans and Democrats (often calling them "Republicrats") in general, especially when dealing with higher offices, such as the House, Senate, and presidency.Click to read.