Updated: 27 min 18 sec ago
Wed, 07/23/2014 - 13:01
Because it's Wednesday, and we all need something fierce to look at, watch this awesome video of contemporary African dances.
Wed, 07/23/2014 - 12:57
In early July, League City, Tex., city council members voted 6-2, "to refuse requests or directives by federal agencies to permit or establish any facility for the purposes of processing, housing or detaining any illegal aliens, designated as 'refugee' or otherwise." The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) and Appleseed, a Texas-based legal advocacy group, filed the federal complaint, charging that League City's resolution discriminates against the affected children and violates the Fair Housing Act and Civil Rights Act of 1964. The complaint "is a warning to other municipalities that are considering similar resolutions. Cities can't accept federal funds, and then use them to discriminate," MALDEF attorney Marisa Bono told The Center for Public Integrity.
After several years of steady increases in the numbers of child migrants arriving in the U.S., some 57,000 unaccompanied migrant children fleeing rampant violence and conscription into gangs primarily in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, have so far been apprehended this year while attempting to seek refuge in the U.S. Still, overall flows of migrants crossing into the U.S. are still low. In the last year, Border Patrol has apprehended some 420,000 people, AP reported today, after three years of near historic lows of apprehensions. The last time apprehensions at the border were so low was in 1973, when the Border Patrol arrested 500,000 people, AP reported.
Wed, 07/23/2014 - 12:56
Across the United States, thousands of people have taken to the streets to call for an end to the Israeli war in Gaza that's claimed more than 600 Palestinian lives. Here's a look at what's happened already in three cities.Chicago
Photo credit: Scott Olson/ Getty Images
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Wed, 07/23/2014 - 10:17
Saul Williams, the star of the musical "Holler If You Hear Me," spoke with Rolling Stone this week about why he thinks the show wasn't a success. The show closed after only one month and 55 performances on Broadway. But Williams was quick to point out its accomplishments:
Could you foresee at all that Holler If Ya Hear Me would close this early or was it a surprise?
We've known what was going on all along. Every day at rehearsal, Kenny Leon was saying, "Let's be very clear with the fact that this play is probably going to be hated coming out the gates." We see how full or empty the house is every night. Twenty-six thousand people have seen the play and, of those people, we've had fucking standing ovations every night and tremendous support from the people that have seen it. But the producer, Eric Gold, said to me, "We expect that the first two months are going to be really difficult."
Why do you think more people didn't come out to see it?
One of our producers came in really angry because he had spoken to one of the TKTS people [who man Broadway ticket-selling booths] -- not saying she was a producer -- and asked them, "What about Holler? Should I see that?" And the response of the person who is supposed to guide tourists to plays was like, "It's a bit of a downer. It's not necessarily as fun as" whatever other play they mentioned. Then she approached another one and that person was like, "Oh, it got really bad reviews." We started a street team at the last minute to counter those TKTS people who are really supposed to be promoting everything on Broadway. I also cannot go without saying that there was something deeply embedded in a lot of the reviews that went deeper than just a dislike of the play.
Read more at Rolling Stone.
Wed, 07/23/2014 - 07:11
Here's what I'm reading up on this morning:
- The U.N.'S human rights commissioner suggests that Israel is committing war crimes; Israel continues its attacks on Gaza as Secretary of State John Kerry arrives to urge a ceasefire.
- Two Ukrainian jet fighters have been shot down near the MH17 crash site.
- Eric Garner, who died after an NYPD officer placed him in a chokehold, will be remembered at his wake and funeral today.
- Hedge fund manager Bill Ackman is upset that his "death blow" against Herbalife, which he says is a massive pyramid scheme, didn't quite work out.
- Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter rank low in customer satisfaction.
- Did you recently purchase peaches, plums, pluots or nectarines at Walmart, Sam's Club, Costco, Kroger's or Trader Joe's? They're being recalled.
- Bats use polarized light to get their bearings and fly.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 14:48
At its annual convention happening in Las Vegas, the NAACP unanimously passed a resolution today backing fast food workers' ongoing campaign for a $15 hourly wage and a union.
Burger King and Taco Bell employee Terence Wise, a father of three living in Kansas City, addressed the attendees. "Our children watch us go to work each day only to come home to eviction notices, shut-off notices, and bare cupboards," Wise told the crowd, according to a statement. "The civil rights movement taught us what to do when our nation defaults on a promise. Straighten your back, stand together, and fight for justice."
The NAACP resolution notes that, the nation's "four million fast food workers are the largest group of minimum wage workers in the United States, with workers of color disproportionately represented and especially concentrated in the lowest paying jobs; where only ten percent of workers of color hold management positions compared with almost half of the white men who work in fast food industry, further perpetuating the racial wage gap."
Read the resolution in full after the jump.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 14:24
The recent revelations that the U.S. monitored the email of five prominent American Muslims failed to shock the Muslim community in the U.S., writes Laila Alawa for The Guardian. American Muslims, by now long used to over a decade of domestic surveillance in and sanctioned discrimination of their communities, have plenty of reason to distrust their government.
And it's shaping how Muslims in America view the country, and themselves. Writes Alawa:
Many from outside the Muslim American community have been shocked by these revelations and others like them. But for me - beyond the feeling that my long-held suspicions have been confirmed - the knowledge that my faith makes me suspicious in the eyes of the government to which I've pledged my allegiance, well, that fazes me less and less everyday.
And for every one of me, there is at least one other young person whose childhood has been shaped by the reality of constant surveillance, government stings and wannabe informants.
After 9/11, I learned quite quickly to keep my head down because I thought that, if I could stay under most people's radars, I could thrive a world in which stories of warrantless deportations, faith-based workplace discrimination (and termination) and arrests that resulted in unending detention were common.
I was clearly not alone in making life choices based on my perception that I was - or could be - under surveillance. A 2014 study from the University of California at Berkeley showed that, whether or not Muslim Americans reported being monitored, they still felt significant levels of anxiety and anger about it.
Read Alawa's piece in full at The Guardian.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 13:56
In early July The Intercept reported that the FBI and NSA had been spying on mainstream American Muslim community leaders. This development, coupled with frustration over the United States' stance on the war in Gaza, led some prominent Muslims to skip the annual White House iftar--a high-profile dinner during Ramadan where guests break their day-long fast with the president and other dignitaries.
Leading the call to boycott this year's White House and other government-sponsored iftars was the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), the largest Arab-American grassroots civil rights organization in the country. Their decision prompted much discussion. Muslim congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) released a statement saying, "While I certainly share the concerns of the people who have called for the boycott, I disagree with the tactic." Meanwhile, an online open letter supporting the boycott garnered scores of signatures. In the following as-told-to ADC President Samer Khalaf explains why the organization called for a boycott of the iftar.
"A culmination of many things led us to the decision to boycott. The recent reports about the NSA's surveillance of Arab-American and Muslim-American leaders prompted us to take a serious look at not attending. Secondly, because of [the war] in Gaza, we did not think it was appropriate to be in a social setting with government officials at a time when our loved ones are being killed in Gaza and our government has condoned this killing.
What we wanted to stress--and what a lot of people have misunderstood--is that we were not saying to boycott or disengage with the government. Dialogue with government agencies has been part of our daily work, and we understand the need to be at the table [to] discuss substantive policy issues. Our organization has reached out to the president numerous times regarding these issues and as a community we've been doing a lot of engagement over the last several years. Maybe we have to rethink that, because it's obviously falling on deaf ears. They want our votes and our money, but apparently they don't want to hear from us.
We want this administration to start following the constitution of the United States. I don't care under what guise they say they're [spying]. If you are violating the constitution of the United States, you need to stop.
The unfortunate thing is that we don't know exactly what's going on. They could be surveilling my organization right now, listening to my phone conversation and checking my e-mail. All we do know is that are individuals at organizations who were under surveillance for as [long] as six years. Does it really take six years to determine whether or not somebody is a threat?
We need to know what is going on, that the surveillance has ended or at least we need to put in some safeguards. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court is supposed to be doing that, but obviously it's not working. We talked to the NSA prior to the Intercept article coming out. The NSA pretty much said that they're not going to comment. Since then, a coalition got together and decided that the best way to move forward is to demand a meeting with these officials. There has been no response.
Likewise, when the assault on Gaza started, we immediately requested a meeting with the State Department to express the views of the Arab- and Palestinian-American community. Again, there has been no response.
After hearing about the president's comments on this issue during the White House iftar I am extremely disappointed and embarrassed for my president and my country. [Obama said in part,"Our goal has been and continues to be peace and security for both Israelis and Palestinians. Now I will say very clearly, no country can accept rockets fired indiscriminately at citizens. And so we've been very clear that Israel has the right to defend itself against what I consider to be inexcusable attacks from Hamas. At the same time, on top of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza that we've worked long and hard to alleviate, the death and injury of Palestinian civilians is a tragedy, which is why we've emphasized the need to protect civilians."--Ed.] ...The president talks about Israel's right to self-defense, but what about the Palestinians' rights to live in freedom? ...What about the right not to have their houses destroyed? What about their right to be free from settler violence? What about their rights to land ownership?
...I know that the administration has worked hard regarding the peace process, but the problem is, without putting any pressure on the Israeli government it's not going to matter. The United States gives [PDF] well over $3 billion in aid annually to the Israeli government, and most of that is militaristic. So for them to say, 'Well, we're doing everything we can,' well, no, they're not. They need to tell Israel, 'Unless you undergo sincere and good-faith negotiations to end this, then maybe we need to [re-examine] our aid to you.' But instead, the U.S. Senate, in the face of death and destruction, has just voted unanimously on a resolution to support Israel and what it's doing.
The dialogue with the government has to continue; that's the only way we are going to be able to achieve our goals. But the bottom line is that an iftar was not the appropriate place to have a significant discussion [of] these issues. We're talking about a social event. As a community, we need to demand more. That's why we called for a fruitful and meaningful dialogue with the administration. Let's sit down with high-level individuals, have a discussion and have them hear what we're trying to say. The White House iftar was a celebration and an opportunity to break bread, which we respect. But we can't be breaking bread while our brothers and sisters overseas are being killed, while we have the surveillance happening, while we have the drone attacks going on in Iraq and Pakistan as well. That's not something we wanted to be a part of."
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 11:49
Lost in the debate over how much money it would cost to change the Washington NFL team's name or what a name change would mean for the football team's institutional legacy is the reality that using American Indians as sports team mascots has a real impact on Native Americans.
And far from being limited to the world of pro sports, K-12 schools across the country continue to use American Indians as sports mascots. All of it colors the self-concept of young Native Americans, according to a new report released today from the liberal think tank Center for American Progress (PDF).
Write report authors Erik Stegman and Victoria Phillips:
American Indian/Alaska Native students across the country attend K-12 and postsecondary schools that still maintain racist and derogatory mascots. Research shows that these team names and mascots can establish an unwelcome and hostile learning environment for AI/AN students. It also reveals that the presence of AI/AN mascots directy results in lower self-esteem and mental health for AI/AN adolescents and young adults. And just as importantly, studies show that these mascots undermine the educational experience of all students, particularly those with little or no contact with indigenous and AI/AN people. In other words, these stereotypical representations are too often understood as factual representations and thus "contribute to the development of cultural biases and prejudices."
Read the report in full (PDF).
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 11:05
Texas Governor Rick Perry announced Monday plans to send up to 1,000 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border within a month to stem the incoming flow of child migrants, the Washington Post reported.
The National Guard troops won't have the power to apprehend anyone. They'll be there mainly to intimidate migrants who are crossing into the country as "force multipliers," Texas ABC affiliate KVUE reported. The plan would cost $12 million a month.
"I will not stand idly by while our citizens are under assault and little children from Central America are detained in squalor," Perry said Monday, the Washington Post reported.
More than 57,000 child migrants have arrived at the U.S.-Mexico border this year, and 90,000 are expected by year's end. Children under 12 years old make up the bulk of the largest growth in those who are crossing into the U.S., Pew Research Center announced today.
It's unclear yet what role they will take in the crisis. Most migrants have willingly turned themselves in to law enforcement when they've been approached, the Washington Post reports.
In the political debate over what to do to address the crisis, Perry has gone hard against President Obama, returning to political lines long favored by conservative politicians by accusing Obama of doing nothing to "secure the borders" in the face of the current crisis. There's plenty of overlap between Perry and Obama's actual policy desires, though. In early July, Obama asked Congress for $3.7 billion to address the current situation. Nearly of the requested money would go to house and care for child migrants while they await immigration processing, but much of the funds would go to border enforcement, detention facilities, and immigration judges who could expedite the processing of migrants.
In the U.S. the conversation has primarily been an immigration-focused one, but the U.N. has urged that the child migrants, most of whom are fleeing violence and gang recruitment in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, be considered refugees.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 10:41
Meet Natalie Nakase, a former UCLA women's basketball standout who's spending her summer breaking down some of the NBA's gender barriers. From the New York Times:
Nakase, the Clippers' assistant video coordinator, is trying to earn credibility in the coaching profession the same way: by proving her worth. She landed a spot as an assistant coach on the Clippers' bench during the two-week N.B.A. Summer League here, a first according to the Clippers and a step toward her goal of becoming an N.B.A. coach -- something no woman has ever accomplished.
"I don't want to just coach," Nakase said. "I want to win championships."
There's only been one woman to coach professional men's basketball in the United States, Nancy Lieberman, who coached in the NBA's developmental league in recent years. Read more.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 09:19
Janet Mock made news this week when it was announced that she'd accepted an offer to become a contributing editor at Marie Claire. So what, exactly, does that mean? Mock explained to Poynter:
"I'll also give my perspective on beauty, and pop culture, and politics, and not just be thrown into a corner as the trans correspondent," Mock said in a phone interview. Editor-in-Chief Anne Fulenwider said that Mock will be writing about her own experiences but won't be limited to them. She was drawn to Mock, she said, because she's a "phenomenal writer, speaker and thinker."
"I'm certainly not discounting her transgender identity; I think that's really important and that's what makes it so topical right now and what's given it a lot of attention," Fulenwider said, "but at the center of this is the story of a woman finding herself, and those are the stories that really resonate with young women."
Mock's first piece in her new role will be a personal account of the women and girls she's met while on the road promoting her memoir "Redefining Realness." It'll appear in the magazine's print issue this fall.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 09:08
One year ago today, a group that would come to be known as the Dream 9 crossed from Mexico into the United States at a port of entry in Nogales, Ariz. The crossing was remarkable in that it was a highly publicized event in which a group of people--almost all of them in their 20s--demanded to enter and sought either humanitarian parole or asylum. The action, which trended as #BringThemHome on social media, was organized by the National Immigrant Youth Alliance (NIYA), which went on to organize larger border crossing actions later in the year.
Three of the Dream 9, Lizbeth Mateo, Lulú Martínez and Marco Saavedra, were undocumented activists who left the relative safety of the United States in order to go to Mexico and pick up five people who had previously lived in the U.S.:Adriana Díaz, Ceferino Santiago, Claudia Amaro, Luis Leon and María Inéz Peniche. One more, Mario Félix, joined them at the last minute as they crossed into the United States.
All nine were detained by Border Patrol and soon taken to the Eloy Detention Center, a private detention center in Arizona operated by the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA). The Dream 9 spent about 2 1/2 weeks in detention before they were released following approval of their credible fear applications.
One year later, the Dream 9 have all returned to their respective communities throughout the United States and they're preparing to head to court to make their individual claims for asylum. We checked in with three of the nine one year after their decision to cross the border as a political act.
María Inéz Peniche, 23
María Inéz Peniche came to the United States from Mexico when she was 10 years old and grew up in Boston. She was 17 when she found out that she was undocumented and soon saw opportunities disappearing as a result. Her family--including both her parents and her brother--made the decision to return to Mexico City, Mexico, in 2012, just three days before President Obama announced the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, from which Peniche would have benefited.
Life in Mexico was difficult for Peniche. She wanted to attend Mexico City's top university but couldn't because she didn't know enough about Spanish language literature and Mexican politics to pass the entry exam. She was sexually harassed by employers but felt pressure to keep working to help her family financially. After getting in touch with the NIYA, Peniche had one day to make the decision to join the action, and despite her family's warnings, she wanted to try to return.
Along with Lulú Martínez, Peniche staged an action inside of Eloy's mess hall; they were sent to solitary confinement as a result. Peniche spent 15 days with minimal human contact and was only allowed two 10-minute showers a week. She became suicidal. "I had never even had detention in high school," explains Peniche, who would pound on her cell's walls just so Martínez, who was in the next cell, would pound back. She tried to burn her hands with scalding hot water from her cell's sink and, eventually, she started throwing herself against her cell's walls. CCA placed her on suicide watch and Peniche was medicated.
Of her time in detention, Peniche says that her only regret is not responding to the many letters of support she received. "I am sorry that to this day, I've not written back to say thank you because it's a part in my life so dark I am not ready to revisit it," she says. "But I have saved all the letters and some are even in my dorm for inspiration when I feel at my lowest."
Peniche's entire family returned to the U.S. though subsequent NIYA actions in September and March. The family lives in Boston. Peniche* attends Pine Manor College on scholarship and is a resident assistant, a post that provides her with housing and food. Along with her family, she's preparing for her asylum case. Once she graduates, she hopes to move to California and work for immigrant rights.
Ceferino Santiago, 21
Ceferino Santiago crossed into the United States from Oaxaca, Mexico, as an unaccompanied minor when he was just 13 years old. He went to Lexington, Ky., to live with his brothers. At age 15, he spent a few weeks in Mexico to get medical care for an ear problem. In late 2012 Santiago, who had graduated from high school and was working odd jobs, visited Oaxaca. Border Patrol caught him when he attempted to cross through Tijuana in 2013. He was deported to Oaxaca. He heard about the NIYA's action through friends and family in Kentucky.
Santiago says the Dream 9 crossing was different than any other he'd previously attempted. For starters, as a Zapoteco, he'd faced discrimination in Mexico but never realized that he could apply for asylum as an indigenous person at a port of entry. "Being indigenous in Mexico means being less," says Santiago. "They call you Indian, they throw you out of places and no wants to help."
It was also through the NIYA that Santiago started to realize how many detentions and deportations were taking place. He began to see this crossing as part of something bigger that would protest the way the immigration system works in the United States.
Santiago was placed in Eloy Detention Center. He participated in a hunger strike after his phone calls were restricted and wound up in solitary confinement. "I spent 72 hours in solitary thinking about inequality, about family separations," recalls Santiago. "You suffer there. But you also learn to be strong."
Life in Lexington is still a challenge for Santiago, who hasn't been able to obtain a work permit. He's attending welding classes and hopes to learn the craft to find stable employment in the future. Santiago has a hearing for his pending asylum case in May 2015. He says he'll be representing himself in court.
Claudia Amaro, 38
Claudia Amaro was 12 when she arrived in Longmont, Colo., from Coahuila, Mexico, with family. She eventually moved to Wichita, Kan., where she married a man who was also undocumented and had a son. In 2006, Amaro's husband was deported to Coahuila. To keep the family together, she and her son moved there.
The son, who was just 6 years old when they arrived, never quite adjusted to life in Coahuila. The family constantly faced threats and Amaro's husband was kidnapped in 2012. Although he was eventually released, the family lived in hiding and in constant fear. When Claudia Amaro was invited to participate in the NIYA's border crossing, she had only a couple of days to decide whether or not she'd join. She says the decision was an easy one. "I was always contacting immigrant rights groups, but this was the only one that actually heard my story and did something," she says. Along with her husband's support, Amaro joined the action. She brought their son, who's a U.S. citizen, with her.
Shortly after Amaro was released from Eloy, her husband joined a small group of people who made an unpublicized crossing in September 2013. Although he has established credible fear, Amaro's husband remains at the Eloy detention center and has not been given an opportunity for release.
Amaro heads to court on July 28, and is the first of the Dream 9 to see a judge about an asylum claim. "I'm conscious of the fact that I'm the first [who] will go to court. I know that whatever happens with my case could help or hurt my partners," she says referring to the people who crossed through three NIYA actions. Her husband is among those people.
Amaro's son is thrilled to be back in the United States and, despite being gone for so long, he's finally had a successful school year. Amaro helps support her family by making cakes and is involved in local immigrant rights organizing. "This is my place, although half of my heart is missing," says Amaro of her husband.
*Post has been updated since publication.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 07:35
Heben Nigatu and Tracy Clayton over at Buzzfeed put together a list of 39 tips from journalists and writers of color and it's awesome. Look:1. "Don't stress out about ingratiating yourself with The Media Scene."
Read a lot of what interests you, and don't feel bad if what interests you isn't the cover of the New York Times every morning. Obviously you should keep up with world events, but don't think that being able to speak at length about every A1 Times story is necessarily important. Write more than you read. Do things/go places that make you feel scared. Don't be afraid to be passionate and earnest; detached irony is dead. Treat interns and HR people and everyone else in your office with the same level of respect you give to your direct colleagues and boss. Be as kind as your constitution will allow to everyone both in and outside of your office. Get into the habit of talking to people and asking them questions about their life, and don't do the thing where you zone out of conversations until it's your turn to speak -- actually listening to people and the world around you is like 35 percent of being a good writer. Don't surround yourself only with other writers/journalists/media people; self-imposed insularity is the fastest way to smother your creativity. And don't stress out about ingratiating yourself with The Media Scene. A lot of the parties suck.
--Cord Jefferson, writer2. "Don't feel like you have to do the 'racism beat.'"
Be tenacious. This applies to everyone, but especially to young journalists of color: Make yourself indispensable. Dispel any rumors, however quiet, that you are just there for a "quota." When you grow bolder: Challenge the status quo. Nearly every major newsroom is overwhelmingly white and male: Do something about it. Refer your capable friends to positions. Push that job openings be made public. Leave the door open for others like you. Don't feel like you have to do the "racism beat"; advocate for stories about race and privilege, but don't feel obligated to write them -- journalism should teach both the writer and the reader. Write what's important to you. You're not the grand poobah of all things Asian/Latino/black/mixed-race. Your colleagues are journalists; they need to know how to figure it out themselves. There are communities out there for you -- you just have to find them, and it takes a little work. Never hesitate to reach out to someone, over any medium, for advice or, sadly, commiseration. Don't collude, collaborate: Your voices are important, and together they are stronger and louder. Start projects that get your words out there. Surround yourself with people who get it.
--Anonymous, editor at news website
There are 39 tips in all, and you should totally read them.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 07:22
Late last year, Angela Davis was honored by the anti-poverty organization War on Want in Great Britain and gave a speech in which she called for the boycotting of the transnational security agency G4S because of its presence in Gaza. She quoted Nelson Mandela, who'd recently died, in saying, "We know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians."
If you've got an extra half hour to spare, it's worth listening to Davis as she makes the connections between the violence in Gaza and the struggle for racial justice.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 07:21
Over the weekend, Bejamin Wallace Wells published a must-read piece in New York Magazine on why the American media seem to suddenly be sympathetic to the hundreds of Palestinians who are being murdered in Gaza:
The story of the conflict between Israel and Palestine looks a little bit different this time around. Social media have helped allow us to see more deeply inside war zones -- in this case, inside Gaza -- and allowed viewers much fuller access to the terror that grips a population under military attack. America's changing demographics (the country's Muslim population has skyrocketed in the past decade and is now as much as half the size of the U.S. Jewish population) have meant both a more receptive audience for sympathetic stories about Palestinians and more Americans like Abu Khdeir, with connections back to Palestine.
But, as Jon Stewart pointed out last night, it's still tough to report on the subject if you seem even remotely sympathetic to Palestinian lives. Watch the clip above.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 06:48
Here's what I'm reading up on today:
- Gunshots have reportedly been fired at the Al Jazeera office in Gaza as the Palestinian death toll has topped 600. It's no surprise that young people there are suffering from outrageously high rates of PTSD.
- The bodies of most of Malyasia Airlines' crash victims have been safely moved out of the combat area along Russia's border with Ukraine.
- Four EMT's have been suspended without pay in the wake of Eric Garner's death.
- Meanwhile, guards at Rikers Island are being accused of faking an inmate's suicide attempt in order to cover up a brutal beating.
- A new policy goes into effect today that allows BART cops to harrass homeless people.
- According to Los Angeles police, a man posed as a cop and sexually assaulted immigrants.
- Things just keep getting worse for City College of San Francisco.
- Get ready for the Kardashian family cookbook.
Tue, 07/22/2014 - 06:47
When you manage to release a secret album in the middle of a world tour while parenting a toddler, I guess you're allowed to brag.
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All hail Queen Bey.
Mon, 07/21/2014 - 14:38
The Obama administration is expanding My Brother's Keeper, it announced today. Sixty of the nation's largest school districts are joining the federal initiative aimed at lifting up boys and young men of color.
The New York Times' Motoko Rich reports that the school districts have pledged to do five separate things:
"Expand quality preschool access; track data on black and Hispanic boys so educators can intervene as soon as signs of struggle emerge; increase the number of boys of color who take gifted, honors or Advanced Placement courses and exams; work to reduce the number of minority boys who are suspended or expelled; and increase graduation rates among African-American and Hispanic boys."
Also today, private companies who've signed on to My Brother's Keeper, which was launched in February, announced their own initiatives. The NBA, AT&T and other groups have announced mentoring and education programs of their own.
The Obama administration has worked to address the school-to-prison pipeline elsewhere. The Departments of Justice and Education have taken a particularly proactive approach to the issue, by educating school districts about the racially disparate application of punitive school discipline measures and going after school districts with extreme school-to-prison pipelines in place.
Mon, 07/21/2014 - 11:40
5Pointz, the graffiti mecca that was shockingly white-washed last year, will be demolished next month. Jeff Wolkoff, the owner of the building, told DNAInfo that the destruction will begin in mid-August.
Nearly a year ago, Wolkoff and his brother were granted permission by the New York City Planning Commission to turn the graffiti shrine into condos. Late last year, the building's graffiti was completely painted over sending shockwaves through New York City's vibrant hip-hop scene and sparking a big backlash online.
The owners insist that the new condos will allow graffiti writers the freedom to create new masterpieces. "I'm going to bring the artists back," Jerry Wolkoff said. "They'll have walls, they'll have a place for years and years to express themselves."
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