Archive for June, 2011

US Airways accused of racist dress code enforcement that it says does not exist

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

(Examiner.com) US Airways, which operates a hub out of Charlotte-Douglass Airport, is accused of racism after it was discovered an unidentified white male wearing lingerie was allowed to fly six days before an African American college football player was not allowed to fly and arrested when he refused to pull up his pajama bottoms which were sagging below his waist even though the airline says it has no dress code. Joe O'Sullivan, an attorney for DeShon Marman said, "A white man is allowed to fly in underwear without question, but my client was asked to pull up his pajama pants because they hung below his waist."

Jill Tarlow, an airline passenger took a picture on June 9 of an unidentified white male dressed in female underwear that flew on a US Airways flight. A US Airways spokesperson in defending the decision to allow the white male to fly said, "We don't have a dress code policy, obviously, if their private parts are exposed, that's not appropriate…So if they're not exposing their private parts, they're allowed to fly." The attorney for DeShon Marman countered by pointing out that his client’s private parts were not exposed and video surveillance tape will prove it. After refusing to pull up his clothing, Marman was arrested for suspicion of trespassing, battery of a police officer and obstruction. Prosecutors have not filed charges in the Marman case and have until July 18 to do so.

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Black student chained to locker, finds noose around dummy in alleged racial bullying incident

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

(Los Angeles Times) An African American student at Santa Monica High School says fellow members of the wrestling team chained him to a locker and hung a noose around a brown wrestling dummy.

The alleged racial incident is being investigated by Santa Monica police and school officials, who sent an email to parents earlier this month calling it a "serious matter that warranted a swift and appropriate response." The students accused were given "appropriate disciplinary consequences, including suspension," Principal Hugo A. Pedroza said in the email to parents.

The student and his mother, Victoria Gray, reported the incident to police on June 21. The incident happened more than a month ago, but Gray told The Times she was never notified by the school and didn't find out about the incident until May 31, when she heard about it from a parent she did not know.

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Young Black, Hispanic Men Likely To Be Jobless, Imprisoned Or Dead

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

(News One) According a new study by the College Board’s Advocacy & Policy Center, young Black and Hispanic men are heading down a socially downward spiral.

The study found that 51 percent of Hispanic males and 45 percent of African American males ages 15-24 will end up unemployed, incarcerated or dead.

ABC News Channel 3 in North Carolina Reports:

"The College Board report on educational experience observed, “…Men, especially minority men, lag behind their female counterparts in college access, educational attainment and employment. Minority men outpace their female counterparts only in negative post-secondary outcomes: unemployment, incarceration and death.”

In order to accomplish President Obama’s goal of the United States retaking its position as the world’s best educated nation, improvements must be made in the rate men of color enroll in and graduate from college, the report stated."

Battle over shark fin soup heats up in California

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

(Los Angeles Times) An emotional battle over a traditional soup has split California's Chinese American community as environmental and animal welfare groups push the Legislature to ban the sale and possession of shark fins.

The bill passed the Assembly last month, 65-8, but is running into trouble in the Senate.

The fight has pitted influential Chinese American politicians against one another, some of whom are running for mayor of San Francisco. Chinese traders and restaurant owners have hired lobbyists to oppose a ban, and busloads of Chinatown residents have descended on the Capitol, saying that a ban would violate cultural custom.

Houston Rockets basketball star Yao Ming has joined other celebrities, such as Leonardo DiCaprio and Scarlett Johansson, in public support of a ban. "Remember, when the buying stops, the killing can too," says Ming, in a YouTube video that shows him pushing away a bowl of soup.

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Study: Cigarette Companies Target Minorities For Menthol Cigarettes

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

(Hartford Courant) According to researchers at the Stanford School of Medicine, cigarette companies use racial profiling to target young African Americans to sell more menthol cigarettes.

For the study, published in Nicotine & Tobacco Research, researchers surveyed convenience stores and other cigarette retailers within easy walking distance of 91 schools in California. What they found was that the greater the population of African American students, the greater the amount of menthol cigarette advertisements. Further, they found that there was a greater chance that prices for menthol cigarettes would go down.

The study comes at a time when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is considering a ban on menthol cigarettes. It is reviewing a report from the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee that concludes that menthol makes smoking more palatable and possibly more addictive. The Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee was created under the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. That act allowed the FDA to ban candy- and fruit-flavored cigarettes. Menthol was among the flavors considered at the time for banning, but the FDA opted not to at the time.

Full story…

Marriage Equality: How Blacks Paved the Way

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

(The Root) The debate over same-sex marriage has proved a controversial topic among African Americans — a conflict that reflects the myriad and contrasting opinions across the community. Because of an entrenched religious history and struggle for equality, blacks remain sensitive to the needs of those denied basic human rights but extremely conservative in applying a Christian-values litmus test to all moral subject matter.

Broad debates about the future of the nuclear family, and the crisis of fatherhood in the black community, have garnered attention from the pulpit to the dinner table. The debate over gay marriage has presented a unique stumbling block in which our values don’t always mirror our aspirations, as well as a challenge to broaden our understanding of the words “family,” “love” and “marriage.”

African Americans are no strangers to having to redraw the lines. Statistics continue to show that blacks are the least likely of all ethnic groups to marry at all. For generations we have been raised by grandmothers or nurtured by aunts and uncles, and have found ourselves estranged from the mothers who bore us, the fathers we never knew, and sisters and brothers who all had different last names. In some respects, the civil rights movement gave birth to a new kind of freedom — freedom to redefine the meaning of family and empower individuals, not governments, in the quest for love.

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NAACP leader sees racism in sagging-pants saga

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

(SF Gate) The leader of the San Francisco chapter of the NAACP said Friday that US Airways engaged in discriminatory conduct by requiring an African American passenger to pull up his pants before boarding a plane, but allowing a white man to board another flight wearing little but women’s undergarments.

The Rev. Amos Brown said the group’s national leaders would contact airline officials to suggest sensitivity training for executives and ask them to “atone, repent and show their wrongness is understood.”

“The NAACP, in no uncertain terms, contends that this young man was profiled,” Brown said in reference to Deshon Marman, the 20-year-old passenger who was asked to lift up his pants by an employee before he boarded a June 15 flight at San Francisco International Airport. “He’s been a victim of racial injustice, and US Air owes to him and his mother an apology.”

Full story…

Decline in minority enrollment alarms Florida’s law schools

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

(Orlando Sentinel) Law schools in Florida have struggled for years to draw more minorities into legal fields long dominated by white men.

Yet despite recruitment drives and other efforts to boost their enrollment, the numbers at some colleges have remained stagnant or have fallen off.

That troubles scholars and college administrators as Florida becomes more and more diverse.

Soaring tuition, tougher admission requirements and other factors have discouraged many minorities from seeking law degrees.

At the University of Florida, black enrollment at the state’s largest public law school dropped 10 percent from fall 2006 to fall 2010, the national Law School Admission Council reported last week. The overall number of full-time minority students studying law dipped as well.

Meanwhile, Hispanic enrollment fell by more than one-third at Florida A&M University’s law school in Orlando from 2008 to 2010. And even though black student enrollment remained about the same at Florida A&M, which has served mostly black students for decades, a smaller percentage of the law school’s student body is now black.

Full story…

Growing number of Asian-Americans smoke

Friday, June 24th, 2011

(ABC Chicago) Will graphic new warning labels on cigarette packs help stem the rising number of Asian-Americans who are picking up the habit?

The Food and Drug Administration just released new cigarette warning labels which feature graphic pictures of the dangers of tobacco use.

In large immigrant communities, like Chinatown, smoking rates are well above the national average. Many smokers began their habit in Asian countries where smoking is more common, and because of language and cultural barriers, they find it difficult to find the support needed to quit.

They are illegal to sell in the United States, but that hasn’t kept Chinese cigarettes emblazoned with the symbol for good fortune from finding a large market in Chicago’s Chinatown. It’s part of the uphill battle faced by anti-smoking groups in that neighborhood.

“Our population is more socially isolated in an ethnic enclave. And so they don’t receive health messages through the mainstream media,” said Meme Wang, Asian Health Coalition.

A recent study commissioned by the Asian Health Coalition found that one in three men in Chinatown smokes, well above rates for Chicago and the nation.

Full story…

Carol H. Williams, Angry Black Adwoman…?

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

(Multicultclassics) “Visa, Nike, Clorox and Burger King have systematically ignored African American consumers,” a charged up Carol H. Williams told a captive audience during the 40th Annual Rainbow Push Coalition convention held in Chicago.

Carol H. Williams is an institution in the advertising and marketing industry. Not the African American advertising and marketing industry, mind you, but the industry as a whole, as she is responsible for some of the most memorable ad campaigns including Secret deodorant’s timeless pitch, “strong enough for a man, but made for a woman.”

Williams and a panel of advertising and media experts discussed the challenges that face African American advertising agencies and media companies, as some major corporations have greatly reduced — or eliminated — their spending budgets for the urban market.

Carol H. Williams encouraged the audience to get behind the joint effort to make companies that rely heavily on African American consumers accountable, and reinvest those profits into black and urban media buys, and in their respective communities.

Full story…

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