links for 2011-08-09

  • Great perspective here – LDP "What I’m actually used to men doing is attacking me once they start intellectual fights they can’t finish. I’m used to men putting me in the friend zone because they find my smarts intriguing but not sexy. I’m used to men straight up belittling and insulting me—calling me stupid, unattractive, or using “feminist” like an expletive—in order to get the upper hand when they feel intellectually outmatched."
  • "VH1′s Emmy Award winning franchise Rock Docs will be back this fall with a special that promises to be one of the high points of this long-running series. Planet Rock: The Story Of Hip Hop And The Crack Generation, executive produced and narrated by former Los Angeles gang banger turned international superstar Ice-T, promises to tell the story of how the early days of hip hop became intertwined with the startling rise of the crack cocaine epidemic of the mid-eighties."
  • "Lawmakers have met with the administration three times this year seeking support for programs that specifically address the black community, but President Obama has not backed their proposals. The caucus chairman last week slammed the deal negotiated by the administration to raise the national debt ceiling and cut government spending as a “Satan sandwich” that unfairly harms African Americans.

    Now, as the CBC launches its most public and coordinated jobs campaign so far, the president is notably absent from the lineup. Instead, the White House has dispatched Housing Secretary Shaun Donovan, who is white, to the event and announced that Obama will embark on his own jobs tour that will take place in the middle of the CBC’s campaign."

  • "As for the reasons the author cites for black women perhaps being reluctant to date outside of our race…like what our babies may look like or having to explain our hair…I’m still trying to figure out how the hell he walked right past the giant History of Sexualization & Exploitation of Black Women in America elephant in the damn room.

    Contrary to a scenario mentioned in the article, my hair hasn’t been a hurdle to romance or sex or commitment.

    Being told more than once that a prospective date has “always wanted to try a black chick” is."

  • "Among its many findings, Ostrer’s paper indicated that Jews have African ancestry — an observation that David Reich, associate professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School, and his colleagues decided to explore further.

    Reich’s team analyzed more than half a million DNA markers across the entire genomes of people from seven diverse Jewish populations — including Ashkenazim from northern Europe; Sephardim from Italy, Turkey and Greece, and Mizrahim from Syria, Iraq and Iran. They then compared the genetic data with DNA from 15 sub-Saharan African populations.

    Reporting in the April issue of PLoS Genetics, the researchers found that modern day Jews can attribute about 3% to 5% of their ancestry to sub-Saharan Africans, and that the exchange of genes between Jews and sub-Saharan Africans occurred approximately 72 generations, or about 2,000 years, ago."

  • "In the United States, some of the most blatant examples of the racialization of mental illness come from within the black community. Historically, diagnoses like “drapetomania” (“this troublesome practice that many [slaves] have of running away”) and hebetude (“laziness”) were used to pathologize the behavior of people held in slavery. Clearly no person would have a reason to flee slavery, or to experience depression while being held in slavery, so it must have been the result of disease.

    With the end of slavery came new diagnostic weapons to use against black men and women; for example, schizophrenia diagnoses are much higher among the black community, particularly among men. This is not, researchers believe, because members of this community are at any particular increased risk of schizophrenia."

  • “The Yellow Brick Road,” the 2011 entry in TheaterWorks USA’s dependably diverting free summer series for young audiences, is a high-spirited mix of all these shows, particularly “The Wiz.” The director, Devanand Janki, has packed more than a dozen songs and several winning performances into this Latino-flavored riff on the L. Frank Baum classic at the Lucille Lortel Theater. No time to click heels in this 65-minute telling: these shoes are made for dancing."
  • "Dude, no you can't change Spider-Man's race" Actually yes, yes you can, and it was done the smarter way. Instead of changing PETER PARKER to a Hispanic African America, the writers have created a WHOLE NEW character in Miles Morales to don the blue and red suit. I can understand how changing Peter Parker would just ruin history, but isn't that what we should be thankful for? Did people complain this much when they made an African American Green Lantern? He was a completely different and bad-ass character, and yet he was ALSO a Green Lantern. That's the same thing that's happening to Spider-Man here. [...] I will say it again: He's not Peter Parker, so why is it a big deal that someone took over the Spider-Man role? "
  • "The plaintiffs, led by a group of black firefighters called the Vulcan Society, claim systemic bias in favor of whites and want Judge Nicholas Garaufis to force drastic change.

    Paul Washington, a firefighter captain who initiated the Vulcans' legal battle, said the FDNY faces the same kind of transformation that swept the New York Police Department, the so-called "Finest," years ago.

    "There's a good chance this will be historic," Washington told AFP.

    The fire department denies racism, but the raw numbers are startling.

    In a melting pot city where 25 percent of the population is black and 27 percent Hispanic, just 3.4 percent of firefighters are black and 6.7 percent Latino, the plaintiffs say."

  • "Rice is the second black Real Daughter to be recognized by an organization that was once exclusively for white women. Yet some progressive historians and Civil War buffs frown at her father's story. They say the very term "black Confederate" supports the notion that the Civil War wasn't about slavery. Even so, University of North Carolina history professor Fitz Brundage says the contributions of enslaved blacks to the war effort should be recognized.

    "If Southern states in the early 20th century had given pensions to all the African-Americans who, as slaves, were conscripted to build trenches, work on railroads [and] do all manner of heavy labor for the Confederate war cause, there should've been tens of thousands of African-Americans who received pensions," he says."

  • C W

    “Lawmakers have met with the administration three times this year seeking support for programs that specifically address the black community, but President Obama has not backed their proposals. ”
    I’m curious, how many programs that “create” jobs has he supported in general (financial sector doesn’t count…)? Not that he’s not ignoring the black community, but being centrist apparently doesn’t involve a lot of job creation all over.