When High School Lovers Turn Into College Macks (A Peak Into the Objectification of Womyn)

The transition from grammar school to high school floods one’s path with a diverse availability of womyn/men and at a greater numerical degree. Most of our experiences in high school, acknowledging the fact of the transition, owe their thrill to finding that “sweetheart”. Soon, however, all the advice against taking one relationship seriously begins to make sense. As freshman, sophomores, and juniors we never foresee how something abstract as “the college experience” will determine the health of our hearts. Few people hold on to their sweethearts; others, go into the next period of their lives confused about how to take on relationships. The majority of quitted lovers in high school turn into reckless lady/man killers in college, because of the premature intensity they brought to high school relationships.

Black Missouri teens increasingly tried disproportionately as adults

Black Missouri teens increasingly tried disproportionately as adults

Kenneth J. Cooper, iNews (Center for Public Integrity) | May 11, 2011

Missouri has been prosecuting an increasingly disproportionate number of African-American juveniles in adult courts, despite an unusual state law that requires judges to consider racial disparity when deciding whether to transfer such cases.

In 2009, 64 percent of juveniles statewide prosecuted as adults were African Americans, nearly double the 2001 level of 36 percent. Black youth make up 15 percent of the state’s population between 10 and 17 that falls under the jurisdiction of juvenile courts.

St. Louis has sent the largest number of black juveniles into regular courts, where the felony charges against them can lead to imprisonment with adults, followed by St. Louis County. Together, those two judicial circuits with the largest black populations account for almost 70 percent of the 485 cases sent to adult courts during those nine years. Jackson County, with a sizable black population in Kansas City, originated just 6 percent of the prosecutions.  (Read more)


The Black Experience

It’s hard to explain what it’s like to “be Black”. How do you explain (to white people) that our experiences are different without actually knowing what their experiences have been like? It seems a little hypocritical to say “our experiences have been different but you shouldn’t treat me any different”. But we are different. I was trying to explain this difference, and found myself lingering between a weak comparison to the Jewish experience and giving up the entire conversation as a lost cause because it is, after all, a Black thing.

I was trying to explain that it’s different to navigate the world as a Black woman. I was a little shocked that this wasn’t taken as fact and that I was pushed to explain. But I was left with this simple but I think accurate explanation: there were certain things that I had to learn that you will never have to learn. But I’m not sure that was enough. Forgive my lack of clarity but it seems appropriate given the difficulty I had expressing my feelings about the topic.

Linked-Fate, Organizing, and the Power of a Shared Experience

On February 1st, 1960 four young black men got together and decided to organize. The manifestation of their mobilization was seen by the public, as these four men decided to hold a sit-in at a lunch counter in North Carolina. Fifty-One years, three months, and eleven days later, I am reminded of the power behind organizing black students on a college campus.

Professor Michael Dawson argues, “A construct of linked fate is needed to measure the degree to which African Americans believe that their own self-interests are linked to the interests of the race.” This concept that black people (and in my lens more specifically black youth) are connected simply by their race is one easily associated with the civil rights movement or the Jim Crow Era. It becomes a more difficult argument to make when placing the idea of “linked-fate” into a 21st century context– in a time where post-racial rumors fill the media and a Black president becomes evidence (for some) that we have reached a racial promise land.

Race, Politics and the Minimum Wage

Race, Politics and the Minimum Wage

Jason L. Riley, Wall Street Journal | May 6, 2011

The summer months will bring summer job seekers, and prospects aren’t good for the nation’s young adults. Overall unemployment just inched back up to 9%, and the teenage unemployment rate in March was 24.5%. Black teens have been faring worst of all, with a jobless rate of more than 42%.

Earlier this week the Chicago Urban League, a civil rights group, released a study of youth employment prepared by Northeastern University’s Center for Labor Market Studies. The authors report that despite renewed job growth last year, “the nation’s teenagers did not manage to capture any of the increase in employment.”

According to the study, 2010 was “the fifth consecutive year in which a new historic low for teen employment was reached.” Based on the first three months of 2011, the center predicts that “only one of every four teens (16-19 years old) would be employed during the summer months of June, July, and August,” which would represent the “lowest ever or second lowest ever summer employment rate for teens in post-WWII history.”

The report goes on to lament that “this national disaster has not received any substantive attention from the nation’s economic policymakers of either political party.” But that’s not quite true, according to a separate study released last month by labor economists William Even of Miami University in Ohio and David Macpherson of Trinity University in Texas. Labor market wage mandates help to explain high unemployment among younger and less experienced workers, contend Messrs. Even and Macpherson. And Congress raised the federal minimum wage by 41% to $7.25 an hour in three stages between 2007 and 2009. The problem is not that policymakers have been indifferent. The problem is that they’ve made matters worse.  (Read more)



Osama—Obama—Oh say can you see

In this corner stands President Obama and in the opposite corner stands— the specter of —Osama Bin Laden.  These two men are the main event this week. A flashing headline: “Osama Bin Laden is dead and buried at sea.” The next moment, cameras are panning through crowds of people in the throes of celebrating this man’s murder.  I sit transfixed, watching the crowds of mostly white people, sprinkled with folks of color. As I watch their gleeful celebrations, I experience an eerie, uneasy feeling in my stomach.   It is not solely because I find it distasteful that adults are celebrating someone’s murder, or because I am in a state of disbelief.  Largely, it is because of the subtle racist and xenophobic-tinged subtext beneath much of the celebration.  As if to prove my point, just hours after the announcement of Osama’s death there is an incident in Portland, Maine.

Stop Lying: The Truth About Jackie Robinson.

I know the NBA playoffs are in full swing, and Derrick Rose and the Bulls are annihilating the competition, but I just wanted to take a brief moment to talk about baseball. Before you yawn and  press the little “x” in the top right hand corner of your window allow me to explain the importance of this post.  Far too often, in sports and popular culture we let myths persist until they become etched in American public memory. Today I want to personally take the opportunity to put an all too tired sport’s myth to bed. Jackie Robinson was not Martin Luther King Jr. and Branch Rickey was not Abraham Lincoln.

Baseball is not only America’s pastime; it is a game in which the line between myth and reality is constantly blurred.  The fabrication and sensationalization of players, managers, owners, and events has become a staple of the game itself, so much so that truth is often difficult to unravel. Some stories have been told and retold so many times that they don’t need citation. One of the stories that have become a fixture in American discourse on race relations is how Branch Rickey and Jackie Robinson breached the color line in organized baseball. The romanticization of this historic even has blown up Branch Rickey to Abraham Lincoln like proportions, insofar as historians have constructed this event to be purely about racial healing with no regard to the business of baseball itself. Branch Rickey, like Bill Veeck and other White owner’s decision to sign Black players was not necessarily predicated on breaking down racial barriers, but signing the best players to help the franchise win games. Additionally, Robinson has been historically portrayed as pacifist whose penchant for “turning the other cheek” helped break down the insurmountable walls of injustice.

Justice For Jordan Miles

Even though Pittsburgh Police beat Jordan Miles until he looked like this:


And even though Jordan Miles, an honor student who plays the viola, broke no laws and committed no crimes, the Federal Government decided not to prosecute the 3 undercover Pittsburgh Police officers who savagely beat him.

To add insult to injury, Pittsburgh’s Mayor and Police Chief immediately reinstated the 3 officers without so much as a apology. An outraged Pittsburgh community called for an emergency protest to pressure the local District Attorney to prosecute these officers to the fullest extent of the law.

Below is my good friend, and fellow One Hood founding member Paradise Gray (also a founding member of the Blackwatch Movement and the legendary rap group X-Clan) passionately demanding Justice for Jordan Miles and speaking on the futility of a war on terror overseas while black men are terrorized in their own neighborhoods.

For more information on how you can help get Justice For Jordan Miles go to http://justiceforjordanmiles.com/

May 2, 2011 – May 8, 2011

Program helping minorities succeed at Springfield Public Schools
Claudette Riley, News-Leader, May 8, 2011

Education and economic self-reliance stressed at summit for young men in Detroit
Naomi R. Patton, Detroit Free Press, May 8, 2011

St. Sabina honors young victims of violence
Michelle Gallardo, ABC Chicago, May 8, 2011

Unemployment among Black College Graduates
Black College Wire, May 7, 2011

Group protests student’s beating in Pittsburgh
Times Union, May 6, 2011

Chicago Faces Potential Loss of 18,000 Summer Jobs for Youth
Samuel Barnett, Catalyst Chicago, May 6, 2011

Race, Politics and the Minimum Wage
Jason L. Riley, Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2011

Black enrollment, graduation rate increase
Lauren Fincher, The Maroon, May 6, 2011

Men share their success stories to help black Joliet teens
Jan Larsen, The Herald News, May 6, 2011

National Lgbt Youth Advocacy Group To Close Doors
Lou Chibbaro Jr, Washington Blade, May 6, 2011

Student groups join with UT department to promote diversity
Allison Harris, The Daily Texan, May 5, 2011

New Technology Keeps Track of Students on Buses
Jason Rantala, KDLT News, May 5, 2011

Schools Program Makes Strides To Close Achievement Gap
Grace E. Merritt, The Hartford Courant, May 5, 2011

A call goes out to city’s African Americans: Let’s support our kids
Charlotte Observer, Eric Frazier, May 5, 2011

Stop the genocide of young black men…
Staff Writer, Brothers Corner, May 4, 2011

Another jobless summer for Illinois youth
Alejandra Cancino, Chicago Tribune, May 3, 2011

Black educators to discuss gap
Kandice C. Wilson, Community Times, May 3, 2011

Students recreate bus journey: Freedom Ride remembered
Lindsey Cook, Red and Black News, May 3, 2011

Keeping the youth healthy
Raina LeGarreta, Elk Grove Citizen, May 3, 2011

Second-Class Students
James Harris, Truth Dig Reports, May 2, 2011

Florida Charters Less Diverse Than Other Public Schools
Dave Weber, The Orlando Sentinel, May 2, 2011

Scholars project targets black, female university students
Doug Blackburn, Tallahasse News, May 2, 2011