Daily Archive: September 24, 2009


Gates Foundation helps bring banking to the poor

by Donna Gordon Blankenship SEATTLE (AP)—The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, best known for its work combating malaria, AIDS and other diseases, announced an effort this week to bring banking, including savings accounts, to the poor. PROVIDING ASSISTANCE—This July 2006 photo shows Tatomkhulu-Xhosa, left, explaining to Bill and Melinda Gates, right, how he has lived with and been treated for TB in recent years at the Khayelitsha Site B Clinic in Cape Town, South Africa. It may be hard to understand how savings is even an issue for the people who live on less than $2 a day, said Bob Christen, who directs the Gates Foundation’s financial services initiative. However, access to a safe place to store money is a top priority of poor people around the world, he said.


At 97, Dorothy Height still pushing progress for Blacks, women

WASHINGTON (NNPA)—Dr. Dorothy Height sits demurely in an office chair that seems more like a throne as it swallows her 97-year-old frame. Yet, her legacy is overwhelming. The living icon of civil rights history still comes to work every day to her spacious office that sits on Washington’s famed Pennsylvania Avenue. It’s the headquarters of the National Council of Negro Women of which she is chair and president emerita. STILL AT THE FOREFRONT— Dorothy Height is featured in “Legacy: Black & White in America,” a 90-minute documentary by Richard Karz that examines the political rise of Barack Obama against the backdrop of changing racial attitudes in America.



This Week in Black History

Week of Sept. 24-30 September 24 1957—President Dwight Eisenhower orders federal troops into Little Rock, Ark., to prevent angry Whites from interfering with the integration of the city’s Central High School by nine Black students. The confrontation was one of the most dramatic during the early days of the Civil Rights Movement. Governor Orval Faubus had vowed to go to jail to block the court-ordered desegregation of the school claiming that Whites would be destroyed if they integrated with Blacks. But the confrontation settled the issue of whether states had to obey orders issued by federal courts.



Guest editorial…Racism disguised as disrespect

You may recall the fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood who set out to visit her grandmother, but instead of her grandmother she ran into a wolf disguised as her grandmother. He acted, spoke and even resembled her grandmother but really he was a wolf inside and out. He was prepared to eat Little Red Riding Hood and to fill himself up at her demise. Today we find many who are prepared to serve up our president from a table set to resemble disrespect. Yet, when you pull off the tops to the pots it is really nothing but racism prepared to fill you up with his political demise.



Priorities: Development of local businesses and nonprofits

It must become a priority to focus on the development of local Black businesses and new nonprofit organizations. A number of nonprofits have been in existence for a number of years and some have been productive, but longevity in itself should not be grounds for them to continue receiving the financial support of foundations and governmental bodies. Pittsburgh must be the most unique city in America for a number of reasons. The Black population is about 28 percent and the percentage is currently unable to generate any political power. There are non-existing Black business corridors in East Liberty, Homewood, Hill District and other communities.


Jimmy Carter was right to denounce White racists

(NNPA)—One of the major criticisms of civil rights leaders for years has been that too many decent Whites choose to remain silent on the issue of race, ceding the spotlight to mean-spirited Caucasians who are insensitive to the suffering of African-Americans.Today, more Whites are willing to challenge injustice, but when they do, they face a barrage of criticism from conservative politicians and talk show crazies who’d like for us to think that Whites, especially White males, are the most oppressed people in America.


Don’t forget race lessons form the past

(NNPA)—It’s hard to imagine that less than a century ago, police sergeants and sheriffs were overseeing the burning of crosses and ensuring the safety of Ku Klux Klansmen in places like Queens, N.Y. And that 50 years ago, people of color were still fighting for the ability to use public bathrooms and drink from water fountains at will. And today, in 2009, despite having the first African-American president in the White House, Blacks and Latinos still suffer from institutional racism, blatant discriminatory attacks, profiling and disproportionate levels of incarceration.



Muslim kids say the darndest things

“My Dad’s gonna kill me!” Just about anybody who had a social life, or tried to get a social life in high school has uttered these words a few times. This is usually uttered after various shenanigans that teenagers engage in once they realize that their plans are busted. In my own life I uttered that classic phrase a few times, when I trashed my parent’s car sneaking out of the house of a girl they didn’t want me to date; when I broke various valuable crystal figurines at my mom’s house playing basketball, and probably a few dozen other times over various hijinks. And yet, no matter how many times I muttered to my friends and myself that I was “really” dead this time, and they might as well clean out my locker at school—I’m still here. That’s the thing about being a teenager, everything you’re doing seems so intense, so life altering that if your stodgy parents get in the way it’d be like dying. And usually every other adult or child protective services understand this about teenagers: Unless of course you’re a Muslim.



Race: On civil discourse and decorum

(NNPA)— read with breathtaking bafflement an editorial by Kathleen Parker in the Washington Post dated Sept. 20, 2009 entitled “Playing the Racial Deck.” In sum, Ms. Parker asserts that while Congressman Joe Wilson’s exclamation, “you lie” to President Obama was a “rude display,” the comment was not necessarily racist. With all due respect, is she serious? In short, I agree with Rev. Al Sharpton when he said, “One cannot play the race card if every card in the American deck is racial.”



Racial schizophrenia

Speaking to NBC News anchor Brian Williams, former President Jimmy Carter (taking a breather between having tea with dictators and lunatics) proffered that not only was South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson’s inappropriate outburst during President Obama’s speech before a joint session of Congress fueled by racism, but the wider opposition to Obama is also based on the fact that Obama is Black. Said Carter: “I think an overwhelming portion of the intensely demonstrated animosity toward President Barack Obama is based on the fact that he is a Black man, that he’s African-American.”