Archive for October, 2013

Jimmy Kimmel apologizes for ‘killing everyone in China’ skit

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

(CNN) – Late night TV host Jimmy Kimmel apologized for airing a clip of a child suggesting that "killing everyone in China" could be a solution to America's debt problem.

"You know, today is a weird day," Kimmel said on Monday's show. "There seems to be a lot of people upset with me, more upset than usual."

Chinese-American groups organized several protests and a petition drive after the October 16 broadcast of ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live."

The offending remark came while Kimmel was talking to a group of children, ages 5 and 6, about the United States government's debt, much of which is held by China.

"America owes China a lot of money, $1.3 trillion," Kimmel told the children. "How should we pay them back?"

"Shoot cannons all the way over and kill everyone in China," one boy said.

"Kill everyone in China? OK, that's an interesting idea," Kimmel said.

He then posed the question: "Should we allow the Chinese to live?"

While one boy said, "No," most of the children said, "Yes."

"If we don't allow them to live, then they'll try to kill us," a girl said.

"Well, this has been an interesting edition of Kid's Table — The Lord of the Flies edition," Kimmel said as the segment ended.

Full story…

Former Hooters Waitress Claims She Was Target Of Racial Discrimination Over Hair

Monday, October 28th, 2013

(CBS) The popular restaurant chain Hooters is accused of racial discrimination by a former employee in Baltimore. And it all centers around her hair.

Derek Valcourt has more on her complaint.

Specifically, the complaint alleges white waitresses are allowed to have highlights in their hair, but black waitresses are not.

Farryn Johnson’s blonde highlights are now at the center of a complaint filed with the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights.

“My other co-workers, they all had different colors in their hair, like red and blonde highlights. I didn’t think it would be an issue,” she said.

Full story…

Pew: Most Latinos Can’t Name ‘Most Important Hispanic Leader’

Saturday, October 26th, 2013

(NPR) While most Latinos believe it's important for their community to have a national leader, most of them can't pinpoint whom they think that leader is.

That's the new finding from a survey released today by the Pew Research Hispanic Trends Project. Survey participants were asked an open-ended question to name the person they think is "the most important Hispanic leader in the country today."

Sixty-two percent responded they didn't know and 9 percent said no one.

Only four leaders were named by more than 2 percent of the respondents:

— Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor — the high court's first Hispanic justice — was mentioned by 5 percent.

— Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, was named by 5 percent.

— Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was named by 3 percent.

— And Rep. Luis Gutierrez, an Illinois Democrat, was named by 2 percent.

Full story…

Red Lobster Waitress Gets $10K Tip After Racist Receipt

Saturday, October 19th, 2013

(ABC News) A Red Lobster waitress, who said a customer left her a receipt with a racist slur, has received the tip of a lifetime, thanks to a fundraising from online supporters.

Toni Christina Jenkins of Franklin, Tenn., said she was shocked when she saw a receipt on the table with “none” on the “Tip” line and the N-word on the “Total” line.

“I was just stunned that it happened,” Jenkins, 19, said. “It’s not something that you think in our generation would actually take place, so I was just blown away by it.”

After posting a picture of the receipt to Facebook Sept. 10, her story sparked outrage online, prompting a California man to take action. Matthew Hanson, founder of, heard Jenkins’ story and started an online fundraiser called “Tips for Toni” that collected $10,749 in place of Jenkins’ non-tip on the bill for $44.53.

“It was about sending a message to racists that Americans aren’t going to tolerate that,” Hanson said. “We raised $10,000 within seventy-two hours. It was really amazing.”

Full story…

Court to decide if race preference bans hurt diversity

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

(USAToday) To hear Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette explain it, what could be wrong with a state constitutional amendment that "shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin?"

Just about everything, says Mark Rosenbaum of the American Civil Liberties Union and a host of civil rights groups. "While that makes a good bumper sticker … it's not the truth," Rosenbaum says. "Instead of healing the nation's wounds, it's actually opening those wounds."

Those two views will play out before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, almost precisely a year after the justices heard another major case on a subject that has divided the nation — and the high court — for decades: affirmative action.

On the docket will be the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, a 2006 constitutional amendment banning the use of racial preferences in public university admissions. It may not be a close fight. Lawyers for Schuette (pronounced Shoo-tee) are likely to convince the conservative court that, as Chief Justice John Roberts put it a few years back, "the way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race."

Full story…

No, Fox News, Not All Latinos Eat Tacos

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

(Huffington Post) Newsroom diversity is helping Fox News personalities learn geography.

“So what are the tips you need to know, to do it correctly — you grew up on tacos, correct?” Fox News commentator Brian Kilmeade asked Latina meteorologist Maria Molina during Friday’s broadcast of Fox and Friends.

“She Colombian,” Steve Doocy chimed in, also missing the mark.

“No, I did not grow up on tacos,” Molina says, laughing. “I’m Nicaraguan, and it’s not a native food.”

It’s common for those who don’t know much about Latino culture to assume all Hispanics grow up eating tacos. When the mayor of East Haven, Connecticut, Joseph Maturo Jr., was asked last year what he would do for the Latino community to address allegations of racial profiling in his town, he said “I might have tacos when I go home, I’m not quite sure yet.”

Full story…

1 In 3 Black Males Will Go To Prison In Their Lifetime, Report Warns

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

(Huffington Post) One in every three black males born today can expect to go to prison at some point in their life, compared with one in every six Latino males, and one in every 17 white males, if current incarceration trends continue.

These are among the many pieces of evidence cited by the Sentencing Project, a Washington, D.C.-based group that advocates for prison reform, in a report on the staggering racial disparities that permeate the American criminal justice system.

The report was submitted to the U.N. Human Rights Committee this week in advance of the U.N.’s review of American compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights later this month. It argues that racial disparity pervades “every stage of the United States criminal justice system, from arrest to trial to sentencing.”

“Racial minorities are more likely than white Americans to be arrested,” the report explains. “Once arrested, they are more likely to be convicted; and once convicted, they are more likely to face stiff sentences.”

Full story…

Does ‘SNL’ Have a Diversity Problem?

Friday, October 11th, 2013

(Grantland) Saturday Night Live is a storied franchise that has found ways to cultivate stars until they're ready to be released into the wild, while continually finding the next generation of comedians to keep the show relevant. But many feel that the show refuses to be truly progressive because of the racial homogeneity of its cast.

Last week, as the 39th season began, some were taken aback by the introduction of the six new featured players, because all of them are white.

When asked about this, Jay Pharoah, a black cast member too often used to impersonate the people Kenan Thompson (and, until recently, Fred Armisen) cannot, told The Grioabout his feelings on SNL’s hiring practices and the show's blatant lack of diversity, referencing the star of Tyler Perry's Love Thy Neighbor:

Full story…

Racism Still Pushing Some Over the Edge?

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

(The Root) Do Racial Issues Still Push Some Over the Edge?

Black Woman's Chase, Slaying Renews Interest in Theory

The suspect slain after a chase from the White House to the U.S. Capitol Thursday wasn't identified by race, unlike the Washington Navy Yard killer who left 12 others dead less than three weeks earlier. Miriam Careywasn't at large, as was Aaron Alexis of Fort Worth, Texas, whose race was broadcast when reporters had little else to go on by way of description.

The public also saw photos of Christopher Jordan Dorner, "a linebacker-sized ex-cop with a multitude of firearms, military training and a seemingly bottomless grudge born when the LAPD fired him in 2009," in the words of the Los Angeles Times, describing him during a manhunt in February. He was believed to have killed three police officers.

All three had mental health issues, and all were African American. Is there a connection?

Amy Alexander, who co-authored the 2000 book "Lay My Burden Down: Unraveling Suicide and the Mental Health Crisis Among African-Americans" with Dr. Alvin F. Poussaint, thinks so.

"Today a woman allegedly attempted to ram her car into gates near the White House, " Alexander wrote Thursday on the Medium website. "She reportedly attempted to flee, and was shot by local law enforcement officials near the U.S. Capitol Building. Two weeks ago, a gunman who was apparently suffering from mental illness that led him to believe that unseen forces were out to get him shot and killed 12 workers at the Navy Yard in the District of Columbia before officers shot him dead.

"The gunman in the Navy Yard tragedy was black, and early reports of today's incident indicate that the driver of the car that seemed to be trying to [breach] security at the White House may have been black. Were their respective mental states affected by race in America? Scoff if you like. I consider this a legitimate area of inquiry.

Full story…

Indiegogo campaign seeks to break the ‘white guy entrepreneur’ mold

Sunday, October 6th, 2013

(Venture Beat) Social Venture Network, a non-profit comprised of socially conscious business leaders, wants to inject a bit of diversity into today’s pool of (mostly white, mostly male) entrepreneurs.

Yesterday, the 25 year-old organization launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to help women and minority entrepreneurs get their companies off the ground.

The odds are stacked against entrepreneurs who happen not to be white males: women-led social enterprise startups are 40 percent less likely to be funded than their male-led counterparts, even though they generate 15 percent greater revenues, according to an Emory University study. And minority-led companies are 35 percent less likely to receive venture capital financing than non-minority-led companies, it continues.

“Investors tend to go with what they know and look in familiar circles for investment opportunities,” SVN executive director Deb Nelson told VentureBeat. “Women and people of color often get missed.”

To counteract this funding bias, SVN provides scholarships and support services to women and minority entrepreneurs. Its Indiegogo campaign will help fund those initiatives.

“Every $1,000 we raise provides a scholarship to another emerging entrepreneur,” said Nelson.

Full story…

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