Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

“Entrenched anti-Semitic views” very rare among whites and Asian Americans, common among blacks and Latinos

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

(Washington Post) According to this article, ADL surveys show that “approximately 12 percent of Americans hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views.” However, over 30% of African Americans and Latinos hold such views. Given that they are almost 30% of the population, this suggests that of the 12% of Americans who hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views, 9% or so are African Americans or Latinos. This means, in turn, of the 70% or so of the population that is not African American or Latino, only 3% hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views. Put another way, less than 5% of whites, Asians, and “others” (including Native Americans) combined hold deeply entrenched anti-Semitic views, compared to over 30% of African Americans and Latinos–or at least that’s the difference in percentages of those willing to express anti-Semitic attitudes to pollsters. Regardless, it seems odd given these numbers that Jews seem especially concerned about mostly phantom anti-Semitism emanating from white evangelical Christians, while being less concerned about anti-Semitism in core Democratic constituencies. But,as Ilya pointed out a few years back, many studies show that people tend to devalue or ignore any information that makes their political adversaries look good, while overvaluing anything that looks bad.

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Hispanics often lead the way in their faith in the American Dream, poll finds

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

(Washington Post) After five days painting hotel rooms in Ohio and an all-night bus ride, Jorge Garcia reached his Falls Church home at 4 one recent morning. His wife, Sara, was waiting up with hot Bolivian-style soup in the small house he had remodeled with friends.

In the living room, a silver-framed photograph on a cabinet showed their daughter Vanessa clutching her diploma from George Washington University in 2008, the first person in the Garcias’ extended family to graduate from college. The second came soon after, when their younger daughter, Paola, finished at James Madison University.

After years of sacrifice and struggle in a new world, the Garcias had achieved their highest goal.

“It was hard,” said Jorge, 51, bleary-eyed as he sipped tea the day after returning from Ohio. He reflected on his earlier travails — stumbling over English, suffering ethnic slurs in silence. “Everything I have endured,” he said, “was all so my girls could succeed in America.”

In their determination to succeed and faith that education and work would lift their families from humble circumstances, the Garcias reflect the attitudes of many Hispanics in the United States.

A recent national survey by The Washington Post and the University of Virginia’s Miller Center points to some surprising findings. In many cases, Hispanic residents’ faith in the American Dream exceeds that of whites and African Americans — an optimism that contrasts sharply with the current economic status of Hispanics.

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Obama wants to stop ‘school-to-prison pipeline’ for minorities

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

(Los Angeles Times) President Obama plans to launch an initiative aimed at improving the lives of young black and Latino men by bringing businesses and foundations together with government agencies to change what an administration official called the "school-to-prison pipeline."

The initiative, which Obama calls "My Brother's Keeper," is to be unveiled Thursday, the official said. It will mark the latest in a series of efforts by the president to spur social change outside the stalemated legislative process.

The move also represents an escalation of Obama's efforts to directly target the problems faced by young men of color.

During the last five years, Obama has met privately with groups of minority teenagers and young men in their communities and at the White House. But in his State of the Union speech, Obama pledged to go further, saying he would bring more of his resources as president to bear on the social problems that get in the way of success for minority youth.

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The truth about the Tiger Mother’s family

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

(Guardian) Amy Chua has been accused of many things – a cruel approach to parenting, gratuitous use of cultural stereotypes, a talent for sensationalism – but cowardice isn't one of them. She provoked uproar with her 2011 memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, charting her unbending rules for raising her daughters, and spent two years dealing with the fallout, including death threats, racial slurs and pitchfork-waving calls for her arrest on child-abuse charges.

She might, therefore, have been expected to take an easier road with her follow-up. Instead, she and her husband, Jed Rubenfeld, have written The Triple Package, which is devoted to one of the most inflammatory subjects imaginable – why some cultural groups soar ahead in the US (while others, by implication, fail). The book charts how three specific qualities, which they argue are essential to success, are passed down through the generations, often through the family.

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As Parents Age, Asian-Americans Struggle to Obey A Cultural Code

Friday, January 17th, 2014

(New York Times) Two thick blankets wrapped in a cloth tie lay near a pillow on the red leather sofa in Phuong Lu’s living room. Doanh Nguyen, Ms. Lu’s 81-year-old mother, had prepared the blankets for a trip she wanted to take. “She’s ready to go to Vietnam,” Ms. Lu said.

But Ms. Nguyen would not be leaving. The doors were locked from the inside to prevent her from going anywhere — not into the snow that had coated the ground that day outside Ms. Lu’s suburban Philadelphia home, and certainly not to her home country, Vietnam.

Ms. Nguyen has Alzheimer’s disease, and Ms. Lu, 61, a manicurist who stopped working two years ago when her mother’s condition worsened, is her full-time caretaker. In Vietnam, children must stay home and care for their aging parents, Ms. Lu said. Elders “don’t want nursing home,” she said: Being in a nursing home creates “trouble in the head.” The family now relies financially on Ms. Lu’s husband, a construction worker.

In a country that is growing older and more diverse, elder care issues are playing out with particular resonance for many Asian-Americans. The suicide rate for Asian-American and Pacific Islander women over 75 is almost twice that of other women the same age. In 2012, 12.3 percent of Asian-Americans over 65 lived in poverty, compared with 9.1 percent of all Americans over 65. Nearly three-quarters of the 17.3 million Asians in the United States were born abroad, and they face the most vexing issues.

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Track Star Jesse Owens’ Olympic Medal to Be Auctioned

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

(The Root) An Olympic gold medal won by African-American track-and-field legend Jesse Owens is being auctioned off, the Associated Press reports

The medal, won at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, is currently held by SCP Auctions, one of the largest auctioneers and private sellers of important sports memorabilia, and represents a significant part of African-American—and world—history. When Owens broke the world record for the 100-yard dash, it destroyed the Nazi myth of Aryan supremacy, the AP notes. The medal was obtained from the estate of one of Owens’ friends, entertainer Bill “Bojangles” Robinson.

Overall, Owens won four medals that year—for the 100- and 200-meter, the 400-relay and the long jump—in the games, which Nazi leader Adolf Hitler was hoping would showcase his people’s superiority.

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Group wants end of N-word in NFL

Sunday, November 24th, 2013

(ESPN) The Fritz Pollard Alliance, an influential group that promotes diversity and job equality in the NFL, called on players Thursday to stop using the N-word on the field after highly publicized incidents involving the Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins.

Harry Carson and John Wooten, the organization's executive director and chair, respectively, released a statement saying a number of game-day officials commonly have heard players use the N-word during games.

"As former players (along with thousands of others) who have worked hard in different eras of the game to leave proud legacies for those who follow us, we are appalled and extremely disappointed to learn that the worst and most derogatory word ever spoken in our country is being used during games as well as casually in the locker room," the statement reads.

The Alliance also has called on the league to punish players who use the racial slur on the field through immediate ejections and subsequent fines, league sources told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

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Am I Hispanic Or Latino? Data Shows An American Identity Crisis Is Brewing

Friday, November 15th, 2013

(PolicyMic) Three-quarters of Latinos living in the United States say their community needs a national leader, according to a new study by Pew Research Hispanic Trends Project. However, when asked to name the nation's "most important Hispanic leader" they failed to come up with an answer because; a) they don't know who he or she is, or b) they don't think he or she exists. 

But why do Latinos even need a leader? One of the more interesting findings highlighted in that same study points out that nearly a quarter of American Latinos don't even considerthemselves Latino — they consider themselves purely American. This suggests that popular opinion about this demographic is misstated, even completely misunderstood. There is no single, vast Latino demographic, as many policymakers and pundits may think; nor is this demographic jockeying for a single socio-economic-political goal. 

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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.

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Latino Religion Survey Reveals Rise In Unaffiliated And Evangelical Hispanics

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

(Huffington Post) Hispanics living in the United States are now increasingly evangelical Protestants or religiously unaffiliated as the number of Catholics among them declines, according to a national survey conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute.

While Catholic affiliation has dropped by 16 percentage points (a reported 69 percent Catholic identification among Hispanics during childhood compared to only 53 percent identifying the same as adults today), evangelical Protestant affiliation has increased by six percentage points in the same period to 13 percent today. In the same amount of time, the percentage of religiously unaffiliated Hispanics has also increased by seven percentage points to 12 percent. Reported in the Hispanic Values Survey, the findings show a significant shift in the religious landscape of Hispanic Americans.

Full story…

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