Tuesday, May 17, 2011

African-American - News

African-American - News May 17, 2011

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Visits To Asthma Specialists Delayed For African-American Children (RedOrbit)
African-American children are more likely to report previous emergency room visits, hospitalizations and need for intensive care unit management for asthma than Caucasian children on their first visit to an asthma specialist, according to a study conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Obama Surprises Tennessee High School Seniors at Graduation (760 WJR)
Amid tears and shrieks, President Obama on Monday surprised a roomful of high school graduates in Memphis, Tennessee.

Kid Rock on donations to Detroit groups: 'This is just the start'
Kid Rock on donations to Detroit groups: 'This is just the start' (MLive)
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing embraces musician Kid Rock, born Robert Ritchie, in the mayor's conference room in Detroit, Monday, May 16, 2011, where his foundation donated $50,000 to five charities in the Detroit area, fulfilling a promise to support his hometown.

Black or White? (opinionator.blogs.nytimes)
In the South of the 18th and 19th century, one family's journey from black to white. February 1861, just weeks after Louisiana seceded from the Union, Randall Lee Gibson enlisted as a private in a state army regiment. The son of a wealthy sugar planter and valedictorian of Yale's Class of 1853, Gibson had long supported secession. Conflict was inevitable, he believed, not because of states' rights or the propriety or necessity of slavery. Rather, a war would be fought over the inexorable gulf between whites and blacks, or what he called "the most enlightened race" and "the most degraded of all the races of men." Because Northern abolitionists were forcing the South to recognize "the political, civil, and social equality of all the races of men," Gibson wrote, the South was compelled to enjoy "independence out of the Union."...The notion that war turned on a question of black and white as opposed to slavery and freedom was hardly an intuitive position for Gibson or for the South.

Don Lemon of CNN is Out, But Not All is Well (womanist-musings)
I take issue with Lemon blaming homophobia on Black women without making qualifying statements. By this, I don't mean that he should be giving straight allies cookies, but that he should absolutely acknowledge that a monolithic representation of Black women is sexist and extremely limiting. First, let's start off by acknowledging that Black lesbians exist. Yes, I know, shocker upon shocker. In his statement about his experience, he absolutely forgot that Black gay males are not the total representation of gay people in the Black community. Erasing Black lesbians on his part is without doubt sexist and once again sets men up as the standard. There can be no doubt that plenty of Black women have spoken out suggesting that Black men should be dating Black women, and have gone as far as to attack gay Black males for their sexuality; however, I think that it is extremely important to note that the media has been pushing the narrative of the desperate Black woman for quite some time now. I also believe it is important to acknowledge that the feelings that some Black women have about inter racial dating, have everything to do with White supremacy, and the fact that the Black woman has historically been constructed as the unwoman. When race, gender and sexuality intersect, it becomes easy to erase the experience of one group, but in doing so we fail to see the depth of human experience. Even if a woman is straight, she is not necessarily pursuing a man, or believes that a man is necessary to her happiness. I don't doubt that Don has experienced homophobia from Black women, because we live in a heterosexist culture, but to suggest that Black women are homophobic because they can't get a Black man is completely unfair, and fails to address the way that heterosexuality is enforced from birth. It further supports the narrative of the Black unwoman, by making it seem as though all straight Black women are so desperate, that they are angry at Black gay men for denying them the ability to partner with someone. Discussing issues like this often becomes problematic when we move away from talking about institutions like racism, heterosexism etc., and begin to focus such ideas on specific groups in the same homogenous manner.

Esther Cepeda: A tale of 2 school systems (Indianapolis Star)
High school seniors have gotten another grim report card in civics. According to the recently released 2010 National Assessment of Educational Progress, 64 percent of public school students who are either voting age or close to it have only a partial understanding of the rights and duties of citizenship in America's constitutional democracy.

Livelihood 'On The Line,' Anchor Reveals He's Gay
Livelihood 'On The Line,' Anchor Reveals He's Gay (National Public Radio)
CNN anchor Don Lemon says his mentors and agents challenged him to consider whether he was willing to wear "the gay anchor" label throughout his career.

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