November 1, 2010 – November 7, 2010

African-American community mobilizing to defuse youth violence
Huey Freeman , Herald Review News, November 7, 2010

Student violence: A manifestation of general political culture
Staff Writer, Daily Mirror, November 6, 2010

Organizer says Democratic Party didn’t reach out to minority youth
Eugene Kane, Journal Sentinel News, November 6, 2010

Is your child a victim of cyberbullying?
Cassie Foss, The Island Packet, November 6, 2010

Study: 27% of MNSCU black students graduate within 6 years
Doug Belden, St. Paul Pioneer Press, November 6, 2010

Fun Fest Targets Youth Crime and Gang Violence in Border Town of Harlingen, TX
Staff Writer,PR Web, November 6, 2010

Students show support for bullied LGBTQ youth
Jennifer Silber, The Daily Campus, November 4, 2010

Baltimore youth say no to $104 million youth prison
Jordan Farrar, People’s World News, November 3, 2010

Baltimore community protests construction of youth jail
Andrew Castro, PSL News, November 3, 2010

NAACP leader: Tell youth the truth
Sheila Ellis, The Roanoke Times, November 3, 2010

Dems Suffer Without Young Voters of Color Who Stole the ‘08 Show
Jamilah King,Colorlines, November 3, 2010

Timana Tahu to confront race row youth
James Hooper, Herald Sun, November 2, 2010

The youth vote: Missing in action
Mark Franek, Philadelphia Daily News, November 2, 2010

Exit Poll: Lower Turnout Among Youth and Black Voters
Staff Writer, CBS News, November 2, 2010

Obama’s America is a disappointment for many
Charlie Kimber, Socialist Worker News, November 2, 2010

LLU VP for diversity to lead historically black university
ANN Staff Writer, Adventist News Network, November 2, 2010

Black youth, mid-term elections and Obama’s age of hope
Nisa Islam Muhammad, The Final Call, November 1, 2010

Expert on Young Black Voters Available to Discuss Midterm Elections
Cathy Cohen, Newswire, November 1, 2010

Community members, benefactors step up for Youth Science Institute
Mary Gottschalk, Mercury News, November 1, 2010

Proficiency of Black Students Is Found to Be Far Lower Than Expected

Proficiency of Black Students Is Found to Be Far Lower Than Expected
Trip Gabriel, New York Times | November 9, 2010

An achievement gap separating black from white students has long been documented — a social divide extremely vexing to policy makers and the target of one blast of school reform after another.

But a new report focusing on black males suggests that the picture is even bleaker than generally known.

Only 12 percent of black fourth-grade boys are proficient in reading, compared with 38 percent of white boys, and only 12 percent of black eighth-grade boys are proficient in math, compared with 44 percent of white boys.

Poverty alone does not seem to explain the differences: poor white boys do just as well as African-American boys who do not live in poverty, measured by whether they qualify for subsidized school lunches.

The data was distilled from highly respected national math and reading tests, known as the National Assessment for Educational Progress, which are given to students in fourth and eighth grades, most recently in 2009. The report, “A Call for Change,” is to be released Tuesday by the Council of the Great City Schools, an advocacy group for urban public schools.  (Read the full article)

Let's Have A Toast To #RealTalk: Why Kanye Is Right.

Why should I waste this blog space to talk about a pretentious, insecure, scumbag who pats himself on the back so much that his shirts have handprints? Why should I defend the “jerk” as President Obama would call it, that stole a poor innocent girl’s spotlight on national television? Why should I go to bat for the sacrilegious heathen who takes photo shoots rocking a crown of thorns? I’m doing it because “Jesus died for our sins, Michael Jackson died for the sins of the media, Jesus had the bible, Michael had Wikipedia.” In other words, individuals who have pushed the envelope in society have always been persecuted for their forward thinking. While I’m certainly not juxtaposing Kanye West to any religious figure or music icon, I am saying that his candid words in a recent 17 minute interview reveal that West is too complex of a person to be written off as a douche bag, scum bag, or a –hole.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TkwOU9wH1XU

BET's 'Black Girls Rock!' Awards this Weekend

This weekend, BET will host the third annual “Black Girls Rock!” Awards in which black women and girls will be honored for the contributions they have made in their careers and their communities.  A few weeks ago, NBC featured the non-profit organization, which was founded six years ago.

ABOUT BLACK GIRLS ROCK!:

BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Inc. is 501(c)3 non-profit youth empowerment and mentoring organization established to promote the arts for young women of color, as well as to encourage dialogue and analysis of the ways women of color are portrayed in the media.

Since 2006, BLACK GIRLS ROCK! has been dedicated to the healthy development of young women and girls. BLACK GIRLS ROCK! seeks to build the self-esteem and self-worth of young women of color by changing their outlook on life, broadening their horizons, and helping them to empower themselves. For the past four years, we have enjoyed the opportunity to enrich the lives of girls aged 12 to 17 years old through mentorship, arts education, cultural exploration and public service. At BLACK GIRLS ROCK!, young women are offered access to enrichment programs and opportunities that place special emphasis on personal development through the arts and cooperative learning.

By speaking to the next generation in their formative years about issues of self-worth, goals, and aspirations, the organization reinforces the message that young women need not objectify themselves or relinquish their autonomy. BLACK GIRLS ROCK! has boldly taken on the crisis of our female youth of color here in America head on and understands the need for positive self-images and a strong sense of awareness. WE SEE SOLUTIONS.

Violence After Sentence in Oakland Killing

Violence After Sentence in Oakland Killing
Jesse McKinley and Malia Wollan, New York Times | November 5, 2010

OAKLAND — Protesters vandalized storefronts and clashed with the police here on Friday night after a white former transit police officer was given what they considered to be a light sentence for the killing an unarmed black man. But protests initially seemed less violent than others that have surrounded the controversial case.

The authorities said one officer was hit by a car — perhaps by a police vehicle — and another officer’s gun was stolen and turned on him. That protester was arrested, Police Chief Anthony W. Batts said, and a police spokesman said 152 people had been arrested.  “You have a very aggressive crowd,” Chief Batts said.

The demonstrations started after Judge Robert Perry of Superior Court in Los Angeles sentenced the former officer, Johannes Mehserle, to two years in state prison. But the judge dismissed a component of the charges that would have led to more prison time.

With time already served, Mr. Mehserle could be released from prison as early as next year. He was convicted in July of involuntary manslaughter in the death of Oscar Grant III, who was shot while lying face down on New Year’s Day 2009. He had been removed from a Bay Area Rapid Transit train after a fight, and Mr. Mehserle said that he had mistaken his gun for a Taser. He was acquitted of the more serious charge of second-degree murder.  (Read the full article)

Roy G. Whiz Redux

One of the greatest phrases I’ve learned in graduate school is “not being bound by the text.”  Essentially, the term serves as a euphemism –and excuse–for not reading the assignment while simultaneously validating whatever jargon-soaked comment(s)  one might offer during class discussion, because the folks who read have had their thinking narrowed by the words one was supposed to read.  I am not bound by Tyler Perry’s cinematic rendering of For Colored Girls.

Early projections indicate that For Colored Girls will finish third in the box office race for the weekend of Nov. 5.  I am not one of the people who helped the film earn an estimated $22 million.  As a postscript to last week’s blog, I stated without a hint of equivocation that I had no intention of paying for a ticket to see Perry’s latest movie.   Since the only color that counts is green, I understood purchasing a ticket as an act that would be interpreted as one of support for Tyler Perry and his work.  How else can we adequately explain Perry’s role as director of such a project when nothing in his oeuvre even remotely suggests that he has the capacity to execute Ntozake Shange’s phenomenal work with a modicum of respect?  Moreover, movie revenues are not reported with asterisks indicating which dollars came from folks who saw the film in question to (negatively) critique it.  No scathing blog or movie review can counteract the $9.75 + snacks one spent to see Tyler Perry’s latest cinematic disaster effort.  I’ll put my recession dollars in someone else’s pocket.

Beyond the Bricks

Beyond the Bricks
BeyondtheBricks.com

If you will be in the Chicago area on October 30th, you are welcome to attend the Beyond the Bricks Town Hall Meeting.  The event will start at 10 am and will feature panelists from the Black Youth Project among others.  Click here for more details.

First Posthumous Michael Jackson Album Gets A Release Date! (and controversy ensues….)

Just over a year after his tragic and untimely death, the King of Pop is back (from the grave) with a brand new album, just in time for Christmas.

A new album from Michael Jackson, entitled Michael (cover art is to your left), will be released on December 14, in the very heart of holiday shopping season. In other words, expect massive sales.

But that’s not all folks; it has been revealed that the album’s first single, “Breaking News,” will have its worldwide premiere this Monday at Jackson’s official website.

Holy shit.

Tyler Perry's Premiere: Another For “Real” Colored Girl’s Story

Today is the nationwide premiere of Tyler Perry’s For Colored Girls. Given the current reviews, I think we as black women who embody and tell black girls’ stories should prepare ourselves and our beloved ones for the emotional, physical, and spiritual consequences of Tyler Perry’s movie. Meaning, we should find constructive ways both online and offline to absorb and to expand the telling of our stories on the terms in which we wish them to be told. However, if we choose not to do this and shy away from it we will experience the same feeling of dysphoria that we felt after watching the movie, Precious. It was as if a tornado was let loose in the movie theater and the response of Lee Daniels, the director of Precious, was to absorb the damage with a skimpy and overused CVS bandage. Therefore, we must prepare ourselves for the after effects of the movie. With this being said, I am happy to know of the work that Real Colored Girls and Quirky Black Girls are engaging in around the premiere of For Colored Girls. Both groups are facilitating offline and online meetings, discussions, blog carnivals, and sister girl gatherings to address the after effects of the Tyler Perry’s movie.

NWA: Niggers With Albino

Watch video all the way through.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGv8PQr8Uo4

I don’t know what’s scarier: the black extremist advocating for genocide or the black reverend who makes white people out to be victims of unequal media coverage. No doubt, neither of them should represent black folks but the reverend is what most of our successes will grow to be. Black parents that want to guide their children down the path of dignity explain to their kids, at an early age, that they must wear the mask. For generations we’ve been told the same lie about dealing with the anti-black world. That lie is that we can beat it by conforming to the demands of white culture— which has tragically become to be the standard for respect of all races. What our loving parents are not realizing is that most of us won’t return to seeing truth, that the anti-black world is set up for us fail, no matter how extraordinary we are. We end up getting away from becoming successful as a black person or rather ourselves. That reverend has lost his mind from over-conformity. Is this really where we our heads to be?