Archive for September, 2010

Can #hispanic conservative Republican become governor of New Mexico? Trying to walk fine line on #immigration.

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

(Politico) National Republicans look at New Mexico’s Susana Martinez and would like to see the future of their party: conservative, Hispanic and the favorite to become governor of a key swing state this fall.

But she is dodging the most volatile and important issue to the conservative base in the southwestern U.S.: immigration. While other Republican governors are racing to copy Arizona’s toughest-in-the-country immigration law, Martinez has expressed only tepid support for it. While Republicans in Washington want to reopen debate on birthright citizenship guaranteed by the 14th Amendment, Martinez opposes changing the amendment.

She insists that the Arizona law is a public safety issue and not a political one.

“Susana Martinez believes that states have every right to check the immigration status of someone that has been arrested of a crime,” campaign manager Ryan Cangiolisi told POLITICO.

But the Arizona law allows officers to detain and check the immigration status of people who haven’t been arrested — leaving the Martinez statement well short of an outright endorsement of the law.

Full story…

#africanamerican men hit hardest by recession. Unemployment rate up to 17.3%.

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

(St. Louis American) As the nation’s largest peacetime jobs program – the U.S. Census 2010 effort – winds down and its temporary workforce continues to join the ranks of the unemployed, a growth in private sector jobs was not enough to keep the unemployment rate from climbing slightly – one-tenth of a percentage point to 9.6 percent – in August.

The hardest hit group of workers – African-American men – were hit hardest again. Their unemployment rate is 17.3 percent, up from 16.7 percent, nearly double the 8.9 percent unemployment rate for white men.

Women of both races fared better – 7.1 percent unemployment for whites, 13.2 percent unemployment for African Americans.

“Jobs are being created. They’re just not being created as fast as they need to,” President Barack Obama told reporters on Friday.

Christina Romer, the chair of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, said the employment report released by the U.S. Department of Labor on Friday was “better than expected.” Private sector payrolls increased by 67,000 in August – the eighth consecutive month of private sector job growth. Since last December, private sector employment has risen by 763,000.

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#BET reality show focuses on #minority NASCAR drivers. #diversity

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

(New York Times) A few clicks on the Web site of Black Entertainment Television leads viewers to a short Nascar tutorial filled with information about popular drivers, racetracks and salaries.

It may seem odd to find a sport so closely tied to white Southern men featured on a Web site devoted to African-American entertainment, but it represents Nascar’s latest attempt to build a following for minority drivers it hopes to develop into stars.

Nascar is behind a new reality television series on BET, “Changing Lanes,” that will make its debut at 8 on Wednesday night. A field of 30 minority drivers will be narrowed to 10, who will live together for a month as they compete on the track and prepare in the classroom for the chance to race in a high-profile event and ultimately succeed in Nascar.

Full story…

Philly schools consider loosening zero-tolerance violence policy to reduce #africanamerican #hispanic dropout rate

Friday, September 3rd, 2010

(Philadelphia Inquirer) Calling the high school dropout rate for city students one of the most serious problems facing Philadelphia, Mayor Nutter said Thursday his administration would work with the School District to address it.

“There is nothing less at stake here than the future of this city,” Nutter told an audience at the district’s administration building following release of a blueprint for stemming the dropout rates for African American and Latino males.

After studying the dropout problems of African American and Latino males in Philadelphia for 10 months, a task force called for the district to reexamine its zero-tolerance policy toward violence, consider offering single-sex classes, add music and arts programs to help engage students’ interest, and raise academic standards.

Overall, only 56 percent of district students graduate in four years, according to 2009 data. The rates for minority male students are worse: 45 percent for African American males and 43 percent for Latino males.

Full story…

Chinese-American Rapper MC Jin Discovers God, Cantonese. #asianamerican

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

(Wall Street Journal) The Chinese-American rapper, best known to U.S. hip-hop fans for his freestyle contest wins on BET that led to a deal with the Ruff Ryders record label in 2001, has always specialized in a style of rap that showcases clever wordplay—in English.

Two years after he moved to Hong Kong, the city his parents left for the U.S., Jin’s rhyming skills in Chinese are improving steadily, he has a fresh concept album with a Singaporean hitmaker out this summer and he’s building a burgeoning acting career, with a prominent role in a film about the early life of Bruce Lee due out in November.

The 28-year-old Jin, whose full name is Jin Ah-Yeung, was born in Miami and as a teenager moved to New York, where his rap career blossomed after he won seven straight Freestyle Friday competitions on BET’s “106 & Park,” putting him in the show’s Hall of Fame. He won crowds over not just with quick, clever rhymes but also with blunt, irreverent nods to his race—a novelty his opponents frequently mocked.

Full story…

#Hispanic middle-schoolers have higher rates of substance use in CA

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

(Los Angeles Times) A survey of students at 16 California middle schools shows Hispanic kids are more likely to smoke, drink or use marijuana than their peers in other ethnic or racial groups. In probing for the reasons for substance use, researchers found that Hispanic youths may lack confidence in their ability to say “no” to peers.

The study, conducted by Regina A. Shih and her colleagues at Rand Corp., was comprised of 5,500 seventh- and eighth-grade students who were surveyed about their drug use and factors influencing drug use. Overall, 22% of the students said they had ever used alcohol, 10% said they had smoked at some point and 7% admitted to smoking marijuana. But Hispanic youths were more likely to have used these substances compared with other groups. Among Hispanic students, 26% had tried alcohol, 12% had smoked cigarettes and 9% used marijuana.

Full story…

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