Race & Racism (News)

D.C.'s High-Level Social Scene Now Mingles Black and White

Submitted by News Desk on Mon, 01/26/2009 - 1:05pm
Source: 

Eleven days after the presidential election, 100 people were invited to the home of Vernon and Ann Jordan. The guest of honor was former Time Warner chief Richard Parsons, but the belle of the ball was Valerie Jarrett, one of Barack Obama's best friends and a newly named White House senior adviser.

All night the Jordans' guests -- many VIPs in their own right -- surrounded Jarrett, eager to introduce themselves and welcome her to D.C. Business as usual. Every four or eight years, Washington's primarily white, influential, moneyed set rushes to cozy up to the new power brokers in town: Texans when George W. Bush arrived, Arkansas buddies when Bill Clinton came to town. The city's high-level social scene -- dinners, black-tie fundraisers, receptions, ubiquitous book parties -- is the place where money and experience are subtly traded for access and influence.

Black renters raise tensions in Bay Area

Submitted by News Desk on Mon, 01/26/2009 - 12:48pm
Source: 

ANTIOCH, Calif. - As more and more black renters began moving into this mostly white San Francisco Bay Area suburb a few years ago, neighbors started complaining about loud parties, mean pit bulls, blaring car radios, prostitution, drug dealing and muggings of schoolchildren.

In 2006, as the influx reached its peak, the police department formed a special crime-fighting unit to deal with the complaints, and authorities began cracking down on tenants in federally subsidized housing.

Now that police unit is the focus of lawsuits by black families who allege the city of 100,000 is orchestrating a campaign to drive them out.

The Audacity of Reality

Submitted by News Desk on Tue, 01/20/2009 - 12:40am
Source: 


audacity of reality

The night of November 3, I sat in front of my television completely dumbfounded. My mother sat next to me praying quietly, big tears streaming down her cheeks. My generally apathetic brother was sending excited text messages. People around the globe were literally dancing in the streets.
While the whole world was in a simultaneous state of reaction, I just sat there. All the mixed emotions that had built up over the course of the campaign had wound themselves into an impossible knot. I expected to feel the excitement, relief and hope that were there but there was also a heavy dose of disbelief.

As Barack Obama moved from the kid with the sweet story -- but no chance -- to the savvy leader of the Democratic Party, I asked myself the same question that others had throughout the campaign: "Is America really ready for a Black president?"

More Americans Join "The Poor" But the Term is Taboo

Submitted by News Desk on Mon, 01/19/2009 - 11:56pm


Editor's Note: When Michael Harrington wrote The Other America public discourse was full of talk about "the poor." Not so today, writes NAM education editor Annette Fuentes, when we use many euphemisms to avoid the term.

"Having been poor is no shame, but being ashamed of it, is."
-Ben Franklin

We've come a long way from Ben Franklin's view of poverty as, if not a state of grace, then certainly no badge of dishonor. As the United States spirals toward a seeming second great depression, "the poor" are conspicuous by their virtual absence in the news media's coverage or -- or politicians lip service to -- the increasingly hard times Americans face. Instead of "the poor," we get "low-income" and "working families" and other more palatable terms for an economic state-of-being that most Americans would prefer not to acknowledge.

A Call to Care

Submitted by News Desk on Fri, 11/14/2008 - 11:22am

Someone must have forgotten to tell the Americans. The front page must have been filled to capacity. A document must have been stamped “confidential.”

Whatever the reason, the lion’s share of U.S. citizens remains blissfully unaware of the political unrest and bloodshed in the Philippines. Since current president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo was elected in 2001, it has been estimated that more than nine photo1-1.jpghundred people critical of the Philippine government have been executed under painfully tyrannical and extrajudicial conditions.

The League of Filipino Students (LFS), a student-run activism group based out of San Francisco State University, has made it their goal to educate Filipino Americans and Americans in general about the current situation in hopes of bringing an end to the political killings.

“The situation going on in the Philippines, and really nearly all Third World countries, is in direct consequence to the lavish and ignorant lives we live here in our First Worlds,” says JR Arimboanga, a member of LFS.

emailaddress: 
cmid05@sfsu.edu

Oakland landlady to pay $31,000 in bias case

Submitted by News Desk on Fri, 10/03/2008 - 11:24am
Source: 

OAKLAND -- An Oakland landlady who allegedly berated an African American tenant with racial slurs and told him that "you're not going to turn this place into a ghetto" must pay the man and his wife $31,000 in damages, a state civil rights agency has ruled. The remarks - which the landlady has denied making - amounted to racial discrimination in housing, the Fair Employment and Housing Commission said in a ruling last week.

The tenant, Dante Lemons, said he was sitting on the front porch of the Maryland Apartments at 3301 Telegraph Ave. in the spring or early summer of 2005, listening to the radio, when apartment co-owner Marlene O'Neill told him no loitering was allowed. When Lemons pointed out that he lived there, he said, O'Neill, who is white, replied that he shouldn't be outside and was turning the place into a ghetto.

emailaddress: 
begelko@sfchronicle.com.

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