Archive for May, 2010

#Blacks, #Latinos worship in changing neighborhood. #africanamerican #latino

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

(AP) LOS ANGELES — The black choir clapped and swayed, propelled by the organ’s groove and drums’ beat as gospel music filled the tiny New Life in Christ Church on Compton Avenue.

The rhythm came naturally, but when it was time to sing, the choir had to turn to sheet music to keep from stumbling over the Spanish lyrics.

Two years after this African-American Pentecostal congregation of about 100 people welcomed their Latino neighbors, the two groups are still trying to stay in tune in a part of the city that has not always lived in harmony.

For Pastor Elwood Carson, reaching out to his Spanish-speaking neighbors and steering his small African-American congregation towards bilingualism is a Christian duty and a matter of survival as his small flock scatters to the suburbs and Mexican immigrants move in. For the Church of God in Christ, it’s a return to the birth of Pentecostalism.

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#Blacks find home in the Twitterverse. #africanamerican #twitter

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

(Seattle Times) CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Janelle Thomas knows how popular Twitter is among African Americans.

The soon-to-be University of North Carolina-Charlotte graduate has 300 followers on the micro-blogging service, most of them young African Americans like her. One friend sends out as many as 100 tweets — or messages — per day, enough to clog her account and eventually force Thomas to drop him from her circle.

“Literally, some people will tweet ‘Got up’ or “Going to class’ or ‘This girl in front of me is crazy looking,”‘ said Thomas, a communications major.

A recent study from Edison Research, a media research firm, is the latest to confirm Twitter’s popularity among African Americans. They make up 25 percent of Twitter’s 17 million users — about double the percentage of blacks in the U.S. population, according to the Edison study.

Facebook’s more than 116 million U.S. users, by contrast, reflect roughly the same diversity as the American population. (Worldwide, Facebook has more than 400 million users).

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How to Get Certified as a Minority-Owned Business

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

(Inc Magazine) Having a minority-owned business certification can help you tap into a bevy of public and private sector programs. Here’s how to apply.

Corporations, the federal government, and state agencies all want to do business with minority-owned companies. The Department of Transportation, for example, requires that recipients of its funding award a percentage of contracts to minority-owned businesses and many large companies have goals for buying from minority-owned suppliers.

The reason for such mandates is twofold. First, contracting with minority-owned businesses is important to customers: “Corporate America understands that you cannot expect minorities to buy things when you haven’t done business with minorities,” says Steven Sims, the vice president of the National Minority Supplier Development Council. Second, it’s responsible: “It’s important because we have an obligation in government to ensure that all firms in our state have an opportunity to participate in contracts that are paid for with tax dollars,” says Luwanda Jenkins, the special secretary of minority affairs for Maryland.

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Huge wealth gap emerges between #black and white families. #africanamerican

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

(Yahoo News) A new Brandeis University study that followed 2,000 families has found that the pay gap between white and black American families quadrupled in only 23 years, from $20,000 to $95,000.

Even when black families earn a significantly higher income than whites, the study found, they accumulated much less wealth. That disparity can’t be attributed to personal saving habits either, since blacks and whites save at the same rate. White families earning more than $30,000 a year accumulated $74,000 in wealth between1984 and 2007, whereas black families earning more than $50,000 accumulated only $18,000 in wealth during that period.

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#GOP alienating #Hispanics. #immigration #latino

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

(Tucson Citizen) In the wake of the defeat of anti-tax extremists in the Republican Party in Tuesday’s state-wide sales tax election, one has to wonder how SB 1070 and other anti-immigrant laws would fare if put to the state’s voters?

Maybe Arizona isn’t as extreme as news accounts and votes in the state legislature suggest.

One of the more interesting subtexts of Arizona’s immigration debate is how the state’s Hispanics see the issue.

Hopefully more in-depth polling of public opinion will validate or disprove the following impressions.

Numerous interviews with Hispanics down in Nogales in recent days show that cracking down on illegal immigration has widespread support within the state’s Hispanic community. So does immigration law reform with tough provisions for those who entered the county illegally.

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#Black babies more often screened for drug exposure. #africanamerican #healthcare

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

(Reuters Health) – African-American newborns may be more likely than their white counterparts to be screened for prenatal drug exposure, even in the absence of risk factors for it, a study at one medical center suggests.

Research shows that newborns admitted to neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) have a higher-than-average risk of having been exposed to illegal drugs during pregnancy. If staff suspect prenatal drug exposure, they may test an infant’s urine or feces for evidence of it.

Some NICUs, though not all, have specific guidelines on what factors should trigger a newborn drug test.

The new study, published in the journal Pediatrics, shows that even at a center with such guidelines, there are racial discrepancies in rates of drug screening.

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Arizona officials go after Mexican studies program. #hispanic

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

(Valerie Strauss, Washington Post) If you think Arizona state government officials would have something better to do with their time than go after an ethnic studies program they don’t like, you’d be wrong.

The governor, Jan Brewer (R), has signed into law a bill that was passed because the state superintendent of public instruction, Tom Horne, who happens to be running for attorney general, dislikes a Mexican American studies program in the Tucson Unified School District. The program allows students to learn in history and literature courses about how particular ethnic groups influenced history, the Associated Press reported.

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#Census trend shows mixed-race Americans are more likely to identify with their multiracial background. #demographics

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

(The Daily Bruin) When President Barack Obama got to Question No. 9 on the 2010 Census, he did what mixed-race respondents nationwide were asked to do: pare down and define his complex racial background by checking all the boxes he saw fit.

His decision to exclusively check “Black, African Am., or Negro” and the fractured response that followed speaks to the complex nature of being mixed race today, said Kyeyoung Park, an associate professor of sociocultural anthropology at UCLA who teaches a class about race.

A new generation of mixed-race people are coming into their own this decade, and as they do, many are more comfortable self-identifying in a way that encompasses all of their background, Park said.

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The Best Case Against Arizona’s #Immigration Law: The Experience of Greater Phoenix. #hispanic #latino

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

(The Atlantic) Can local police officers be trusted to target illegal immigrants without engaging in racial profiling? Will the deportation of illegal immigrants save taxpayer money? Is enforcement at the city or county level a prudent use of local resources?

The answers to these questions could help determine how long Arizona’s new immigration law lasts, and whether other states or cities adopt a similar approach. But strangely, public debate on this matter all but ignores the fact that the biggest metropolitan area in Arizona has been experimenting with aggressive local enforcement of immigration law for almost half of the last decade.

Maricopa County counts 3,954,598 residents, its seat is Phoenix, and its borders encompass more than half of the state’s residents. Its Sheriff, Joe Arpaio, is internationally known for his aggressive tactics against illegal immigrants, and his department has run a human smuggling unit since 2006. Department regulations were also long ago rewritten to include immigration work in the regular duties of deputies. Extensive raids target Latino neighborhoods, and as of July 2009, The New Yorker reported that the department claims it has arrested 30,000 illegal immigrants, thanks in part to a federal program that allows local officers to be trained by the Department of Homeland Security, and afterward to act as immigration enforcement. Sheriff Arpaio’s department has more officers trained in that program than any other jurisdiction in America.

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New study finds racial wealth gap quadrupled since mid-1980s #africanamerican

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

(Physorg) The wealth gap between white and African-American families increased more than four times between 1984-2007, and middle-income white households now own far more wealth than high-income African Americans, according to an analysis released on Monday by the Institute on Assets and Social Policy (IASP) at Brandeis University.

IASP, in a research brief, also reported that many African Americans hold more debt than assets and at least 25 percent of African-American families had no assets to turn to in times of economic hardship. The fourfold increase in the wealth gap, it said, reflects public policies, such as tax cuts on investment income and inheritances, which benefit the wealthiest and persistent discrimination in housing, credit and labor markets.

Full story…

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