Saturday, October 30, 2010

Wow: Democrats are Suddenly Noticing Black People

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Politicians chase votes the way a frat boy chases women.  Also like the frat boy, politicians can have selective memory when it comes to creating a respectable and reciprocal relationship.  They beg for your votes, promise you the world and then promptly disappear until it’s time for re-election.

That’s a bit of what we’re seeing right now from the Obama Administration.  The Obama camp has rarely used the words “black man” or “black woman” in public for the last year, yet they are suddenly hanging in the hood more than the barber and the local drug dealer.  They are holding forums to rally black voters for the mid-term elections and telling black folks to vote as if Obama were on the ballot.

Click to read.

Allen Iverson’s Turkey Adventure Tells the Story of the Black Athlete in America

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

I never thought I'd see the day that Allen Iverson, one of the most talented players in the history of the NBA, would be pushed out of the league like a loaf of moldy bread. "The Answer" left us all full of questions, as most of us really wondered what in the heck happened to his stellar career. This week, Iverson signed a deal to play for a Turkish team called Besiktas (I haven't heard of them either). The 35-year old veteran is likely going to be the star of the team and was given a two-year deal worth $4 million.
"There are a lot of things that I'm not proud of," Iverson said. "I came into this league 21 years old, never having nothing in my whole life and then given everything in the world. I met a lot of people that were bad people that I had around me. I met a lot of people that were good people. I had to at a young age distinguish who were good and who were bad. And I made a lot of mistakes along the way thinking I knew things that I didn't know. A lot of times I was a fish out of water, I thought I was in the biggest ocean in the world. I made mistakes, so me not being on an NBA roster, and me being bad-mouthed throughout the league, a lot of things I have to own up to. A lot of those things were true. I made a lot of mistakes. And obviously it cost me."


Click to read.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Kohls Sells a “Ghetto Fab” Wig in their stores for Halloween


Written by Dorian Chandler


With Halloween approaching Kohl’s department store rolled our their latest available costumes and wigs. What the hell where they thinking when they decided to roll out this hot ghetto mess entitled “Ghetto Fab Wig.” Kohl’s claims you can “dance the night away in this disco inspired Afro style wig.

Really Kohl’s?

Your wig inspiration came from disco and Afro styles but instead of calling it that you decided to call it “Ghetto Fab?” I’m confused Kohl’s. Can you clarify how this ghetto fab wig got past your production and PC lines? Does Kohl’s consider themselves experts in what’s deemed “Ghetto” Fab a.k.a Black Fab? Oddly enough the model shown wearing the “ghetto fab” wig doesn’t look ghetto or black for that matter (what constitutes “ghettoness” anyway?)

Did Kohl’s one size fits all mantra get them in over their heads?

UPDATE: Kohl’s via twitter was swift to respond to the matter and apologize to each an every person that tweeted them (see below). They did as they said and removed the offensive language and the product as a whole from their site.


Click to read.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Chris Linton: Teen Beat on Video

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The beating of Chris Linton was sad to watch. A 16-year old black male being handled by Boston Police until his face was bloody, Linton soon found his incident plastered all over YouTube. When I took a look at the video, it had been viewed nearly 30,000 times, reminding us of the perils of doing your dirt in a world with cell phone cameras.
The event in question took place at Roxbury Community College, where Linton was inside one of the buildings charging his cell phone. He is not a student at the university, but had stopped to get the cell charged so he could take pictures of his new daughter at the hospital.
While it is not clear why police were following him, the story is that Linton had just escaped from a local youth detention center and had been tracked to the university. That's when the beating began.


Click to read.

Two Pastors Come After Eddie Long: Request HIV Test

Two pastors, Reuben Armstrong and Prophet H. Walker, have teamed up to plan a rally against Bishop Eddie Long. Both pastors are asking that Long resign from his church, and Armstrong has even gone as far as asking that Pastor Long take an HIV test.
Armstrong is a radio show host and Walker is the pastor of the True Light Pentecostal Church in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The two plan to rally this weekend in Atlanta. The event is set to take place on October 31 at the state capitol.

Click to read.

Chris Linton: 16-year old gets beaten by police

The police in Boston are caught beating a 16-year old on tape. ;

Nigger Nation

Nigger Nation by Dorian Chandler

Juan Defends Fox News Against Racism Charges – Why?

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Fox News commentator Juan Williams has been in the news quite a bit lately. It started when he was fired from NPR last week for going onto Fox and saying that Muslims on airplanes make him nervous. Apparently, in Juan's world, every Muslim he meets might want to blow him up. I've always wondered how Juan would feel if a white woman said that she believes that every black man she meets (including Juan) wants to mug her. I should probably stop speculating, since Juan might actually agree with that statement.
Fox News took the interesting step of rewarding Juan for his racist rant by giving him a three-year contract reportedly worth a cool two-million dollars. Apparently, racism pays in an allegedly post-racial society. Fox proves the value of racism every day with their record ratings and massive profitability. A small fraction of that dough trickles down to Juan, one of the few black men in America willing to stand up for the network that has rejuvenated racial terrorism in our country.


Click to read.

Clarence Thomas’ Sexual Side Exposed by Ex-Girlfriend

Justice Clarence Thomas’s ex girlfriend comes forward after almost 20 years

Justice Clarence Thomas’s ex girlfriend comes forward after almost 20 years

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Justice Clarence Thomas’s ex girlfriend comes forward after almost 20 years

Justice Clarence Thomass ex girlfriend comes forward after almost 20 years

Head of State Spoof on President Obama is Incredibly Ignorant

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action

When I was asked my thoughts about a YouTube video spoof of Barack Obama rapping the song "Hard in Da Paint," by Atlanta-based rapper Waka Flocka Flame, I didn't quite know what to say. Knowing what I know about Waka Flocka Flame, I figured that the spoof would be a reflection of the kind of ignorance that seems to breed itself in modern day hip hop. I also expected that the video might consist of insulting depictions of President Barack Obama in an environment that involved weed, liquor, half naked women and maybe a gun or two. For some reason, there are people who seem to think that this represents everything about being black in America.
After seeing the spoof, I can only say that I was right. The video throws together a bunch of twisted lyrics being recited by an Obama look-alike who keeps telling us that he's "the head of state n*gga." The lyrics aren't exactly creative and the video is short of inspirational to anyone. But it has gotten tens of thousands of views on YouTube, which means that somebody out there likes it.

Click to read.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

College Student Shot by Police Calls for Federal Probe

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The shooting of Pace University football player DJ Henry has been the source of tremendous controversy. Henry was shot by police ten days ago outside a local bar in Thornwood, NY. The 20-year old college student was parked in a No Stopping zone when an officer allegedly tapped on his window, telling him to move. According to police, Henry hit two police officers when moving his car, prompting officers to respond with gunfire.
At the time, police were responding to a fight that occurred outside the bar, and Henry was not involved in any illegal activity.
Henry's parents, Angela and Danroy Henry, are asking that Attorney General Eric Holder investigate the shooting, as they do not trust that local law enforcement has been unbiased in their investigation. Someone from inside the police force leaked Henry's blood alcohol level to the media, which was reportedly above the legal limit. This contradicts accounts by others that Henry was the designated driver for the group with whom he was traveling.


Click to read.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Racism in the Workplace: Many African Americans are Affected

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Most of us know Hanes Brands as the company that has Michael Jordan peddling underwear. The company is also responsible for other leading brands such as Champion sports apparel and Playtex, among others.

The company is now in the middle of controversy after an African American employee, Yunusa Kenchi, filed suit for discrimination. An embarrassing email has allegedly surfaced in which Kenchi was referenced using the n-word. The employee has taken the case public, and Hanes has yet to respond.


Click to read.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Yes, I’m Glad Juan Williams Got Fired From NPR

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

It wasn't a terrorist attack, but there was an explosion. The explosion occurred in my email inbox when a slew of associates forwarded me emails about NPR firing Juan Williams for his disparaging remarks about the Islamic community. Many of my friends remembered two years ago, when Juan and Bill O'Reilly went through a lot of trouble to have me fired from Syracuse University. Their ridiculous stunt stretched over several shows, as they worked to paint me as the most racist black man in America. The attack was a personal retaliation by O'Reilly for the fact that I asked theYour Black World Coalition to boycott O'Reilly's corporate sponsors after we grew tired of their attacks on Michelle and Barack Obama. I stand by every single word I said about both Juan Williams and Bill O'Reilly, so to put it in layman's terms, "Ain't a damn thing changed."

Click to read.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Single Black Moms Have Media Net Worth of $0 Dollars

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

NYU’s Women of Color Policy Network recently released a report citing some disturbing trends in the economic status of single mothers of color. Basically, the report shows that women of color have a median net worth of zero. Yes, you heard that correctly, nearly zippo in the bank account, and maybe a little bit of debt.

The numbers compare with a net worth of $25,000 for single fathers of all races, and a net worth of $6,000 for white single moms. Young single moms are in the worst shape, with more than half of the moms under 40 having zero or negative net worth.


Click to read.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dr. Boyce, YBW Protest Works: Deputies Forced To Resign for Abuse of Power



From Dr. Boyce:  I am hopeful that this is evidence that our protests last week at the county jail was successful:



Two Onondaga County sheriff’s deputies have been suspended or forced to resign in recent weeks following unrelated investigations into misconduct allegations.

Anthony Gorgoni, a deputy for 18 years, was suspended without pay three weeks ago for violating the sheriff’s use-of-force policy, Sheriff Kevin Walsh said. The allegations involve an inmate at the Justice Center jail, Walsh said.



Alexander Nicholson, a deputy for eight years, resigned Friday when he was confronted with allegations stemming from an investigation by the sheriff’s abused-persons unit, Walsh said. That investigation is continuing, he said.

“I can only say we received the allegations, we brought him in, we confronted him with the allegations and he chose to resign,” Walsh said.

He said he could not be more specific about the allegations because the investigation is open. If they’re substantiated, they would be criminal, he said.


Click to read

Monday, October 18, 2010

Are the Democrats Loyal to African American Voters?


Click to listen to Al Sharpton and Dr. Boyce Watkins discuss whether or not African Americans should go out and support the Democrats in the mid-term elections.  You can listen by clicking here.

Dr, Boyce Watkins Discusses African Americans Voting in November 2010 Elections with Rev. Al Sharpton

Dr, Boyce Watkins Discusses African Americans Voting in November 2010 Elections with Rev. Al Sharpton

Ralph Jones, Jr: 16-Year Old Chooses HBCU Over Harvard


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

When I heard about 16-year old Ralph Jones Jr. choosing Florida A&M University over Harvard, I didn't even flinch. In fact, the words "woopty damn doo" came to mind. Those words were not chosen because I didn't appreciate the enormity of Jones' achievements, but rather, it was because most of us already know that many HBCUs are better than schools like Harvard and Yale. They are certainly better for African American students in almost every context.
The imaginary mystique of schools like Harvard and Yale effectively exists because these schools got a huge head start on HBCUs as it relates to access to resources and the establishment of legacy. In fact, many of these institutions were founded at a time when it was illegal for slaves to learn how to read. So today, Ivy League universities have endowments in the billions, while many HBCUs can barely pay the light bill.


Click to read.

Dr. Boyce Watkins Ralies Against Injustices in Syracuse, NY Justice System

Dr. Boyce Watkins and Others Raliy Against Injustices in Syracuse, NY Justice System

Sunday, October 17, 2010

African American Voters Get Heavy Appeals from Democrats: Should They Listen?

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

I was on the radio this morning with Rev. Jesse Jackson, Dr. Marc Lamont Hill (Columbia University Professor and host of "Our World with Black Enterprise"), Regina Thomas (former Secretary of the Commonwealth for the State of Virginia) and Charles M. Blow from the New York Times. One of the issues that came up is the fact that the Democratic Party is spending as much as three million dollars to shore up the black vote before the mid-term elections. Apparently, they suddenly realize that black voters exist, and I wouldn't be surprised if black voters disappear from their memories again after the elections are over. By ignoring key issues in our community and suddenly appealing to black voters when it's time to protect their power, the Democrats are coming off as frat boys who show up to a girl's house when it's time to get naked.
One of the profound points being made by Dr. Hill (which I backed up immediately) was the fact that the Democrats, in their appeal to black voters, have not taken the time to establish any kind of trade-off with our community. There's been no consistent effort to directly address massive black unemployment, excessive numbers of foreclosures, disparities in the educational system, mass incarceration or any of the other issues that matter to us. Now, for some reason, the Democrats think that African Americans will forget that they've been forgotten.


Click to read.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

How to Keep the Systems from Killing Our Boys

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

This week, I got together with a coalition of other concerned citizens and met at the steps of the county courthouse.  We then marched around the jail to fight for the rights of two people of color, Chuniece Patterson and Raul Pinet, both of whom recently died while in police custody.  The march and the reasons behind it led me down a path of self-discovery when it comes to understanding the impact that the criminal justice system has on our community and our children.

Click to read.

Friday, October 15, 2010

TI Headed Back to Prison: Artist Gets 11 Months

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The rapper T.I. appeared in court today, pleading with the judge not to send him back to prison. The artist faced five to 11 months in prison for violating the terms of his probation after being caught in possession of illegal narcotics. He and his wife Tameka "Tiny" Cottle were arrested last month, with the arrest taking over national headlines for several days.
T.I. (a.k.a. Clifford Harris Jr.) told the judge that he needs help for drug addiction instead of incarceration. The U.S. Attorney's Office, however, is asking that the artist spend two years in prison. The media was not allowed into the courtroom during the hearing, at the request of the judge.

Click to read

Another Lawsuit Filed Against the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

A woman who was once employed by the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church is suing, alleging that other employees retaliated against her when she complained about being sexually harassed. Tama Colson filed suit in the U.S. District Court of North Georgia, with the suit asking for unspecified damages.
Colson says that another employee showed her a picture of a penis on a cell phone. She says that when she complained about the incident, other employees retaliated against her. She is claiming that the church is responsible for the harassment she experienced, as well as the retaliation and emotional distress.
"New Birth has a strict policy against sexual harassment that requires employees to report the complaint within 48 hours of the abuse," Long and church spokesman Art Franklin told CNN.
"Tama Colson's complaint allegedly happened in October of 2009," the statement said. "Although, Tama Colson was aware of the New Birth sexual harassment policy she did not make her complaint known to New Birth authorities until August of this year. New Birth moved swiftly to launch an investigation that is ongoing.”


Click to read

Dr. Boyce and Al Sharpton ask if Race Relations Have Gotten Worse or Better Under Obama


Dr. Boyce Watkins and Rev. Al Sharpton ask whether or not President Obama should be accused of helping or hurting race relations – listen by clicking here.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Candidate’s Name Changed to “Rich Whitey” on Ballot in Black Neighborhoods

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The Green Party candidate for governor of the state of Illinois is a man by the name of Rich Whitney. Unfortunately, if you take one letter out of his name, you turn him from a serious candidate into a serious joke.
That's what happened to Whitney this week, when his name was misspelled as "Rich Whitey" on voting machines in almost two dozen wards in the city of Chicago. Even worse is the fact that the wards are in predominantly African American neighborhoods.

Click to read.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Black Bloggers Invited to the White House: Are They Being Influenced?


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University 

President Obama recently invited a slew of African American bloggers to the White House for a “black online summit” of sorts.  Many commentators from Black America Web, News One and even my very own AOL Black Voices were brought in to talk turkey with the president before the election. 

I do a lot of writing on the web, and I actually do work with several of the sites that were invited to the White House summit.  But I wasn’t asked to be part of this particular gathering.  I am not ashamed to admit that I wasn’t invited, because I never expected to be brought in anyway.  In fact, I despise the idea of spending all my time around politicians, many of whom only seem to care about their own agenda. 

Click to read.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Would Foreclosure Freezes Help the Economy?

How a foreclosure freeze could heat up our economy

by Dr. Wilmer Leon

Recently some of the largest mortgage servicers such as Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and GMACMortgage have suspended their property foreclosure proceedings in many U.S. states amidst allegations of their failing to follow legal foreclosure procedures. These are some of the same institutions that received a massive federal bailout in the midst of the economic crisis.

America is on pace to top 1.2 million bank foreclosures by the end of this year. According to RealtyTrac "Lenders foreclosed on 95,364 U.S. properties in August, the highest monthly total in the history of the report and about 2 percent higher than the previous peak of 93,777 bank repossessions (REOs) in May 2010."

Reports indicate that due to this surge in bank foreclosures, mortgage company officials have not been properly reviewing all of the paperwork and in some instances have not been in possession of complete loan packages. One of the major causes of this problem goes back to the genesis of the economic crisis. When a mortgage is resold the seller and new buyer are required to execute a document called an "assignment". This document provides proof that the transaction actually took place. As these "toxic loans" were being sliced, diced, and resold as valuable parts of other financial instruments, paperwork got lost or was never processed. Now that these toxic loans are in default the mortgage servicers are trying to resell the properties without the "assignment". In real estate that's a huge problem.


Click to read.

Dr. Boyce Watkins Discuss Hot Topics with Rev. Al Sharpton

Dr. Boyce Watkins Discusses Weekly Hot Topics with Rev. Al Sharpton

Monday, October 11, 2010

Dr. Boyce Watkins Gives More Coaching on MSN’s “The Invested Life”


A new episode of our MSNBC special is out.  You can watch it by clicking here.


Dr. Boyce Watkins,Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action

Protestors Fight Against Saggin: Is That All We Have to Fight About?

North Carolina Couple Staging a Rally to Protest

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Ken and Gwen Rasheed of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, apparently find saggy pants to be a serious problem in their personal lives. The two are working diligently to fight for an ordinance banning teens from "saggin" and have a zero tolerance policy for this style of dress. In fact, this past Saturday, the couple had a rally against saggy pants.
"I was working in the recreation department in one of the recreation centers and about 95 percent of the kids that came in there had their pants saggy," said Ken toldFox 8 News in Winston-Salem. "To me, the sagging and showing your underwear is not showing any pride in who you are."

Click to read.

Congressional Black Caucus Speaks Up (Finally) On Black Unemployment

Congressional Black Caucus

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

From Black America Web via Clutch Magazine

On the heels of September's mixed unemployment report, the Congressional Black Caucus renewed its call for President Barack Obama and Congress to do something to specifically address the nation's high black joblessness rate.
The country's unemployment rate remained stuck at 9.6 percent, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics. The economic monthly report was a mix of good news and bad. The good: The private sector added 64,000 jobs last month. The bad: Government agencies cut 159,000 jobs, many of them federal Census workers and state and local employees.


Click to read.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Marc Lamont Hill Hosts New Show for Black Enterprise


Oct 07, 2010 14:10 ET

Marc Lamont Hill Premieres as New Host of "Our World with Black Enterprise"

New Season, New Host, New Perspective... Syndicated Series Spotlighting Contemporary African American Experiences Returns Beginning This Weekend, October 9th & 10th

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - October 7, 2010) -  Dr. Marc Lamont Hill makes his debut as host of the nationally syndicated television series Our World with Black Enterprise this weekend, October 9th and 10th. He brings a fresh and engaging perspective to a show uniquely focused on the contemporary African American experience. Airing in more than 145 markets, the weekly, 30-minute program is a mix of one-on-one All Access interviews with today's top newsmakers and celebrities, On the Record discussions about the hottest topics affecting African Americans, and Slice of Life profiles of some of the world's most intriguing people.

A distinguished author, social commentator, and noted "hip-hop generation" intellectual, Marc Lamont Hill has emerged as a leading voice on the nation's most challenging issues. The Columbia University professor, who holds a Ph.D. with distinction from the University of Pennsylvania, has been lauded for his published work on topics such as hip-hop culture, politics, sexuality, education, and religion. As a regular contributor to the Fox News Channel, Hill demonstrated a willingness to engage in today's most heated debates and take on the toughest issues. As host of Our World with Black Enterprise, Hill continues to prove that no topic is off limits with a full season of shows that will engage viewers on subjects ranging from the controversial and serious to the entertaining and sensitive.

"Marc brings an exciting new element and point of view to our show," said Black Enterprise President & CEO Earl "Butch" Graves Jr. "He combines the credentials of an academic with the understanding of a new generation of African Americans who came of age in the era of hip-hop, digital technology, and President Obama. His perspective as an educator, journalist, and an outspoken member of our community gives our audience the opportunity to experience a fearless take on the issues that most affect them."

The season premiere of Our World with Black Enterprise features a one-on-one conversation with Grammy Award-winning entertainer and philanthropist John Legend and a hard-hitting roundtable on the shocking education gap for black youth in urban communities, who are falling behind at an alarming rate. Plus, we profile Chicago-based Kids Off The Block, Inc., a nonprofit organization committed to providing at-risk youth with positive alternatives to gangs, drugs, and violence.

Our World with Black Enterprise airs in syndicated markets across the country, including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. Check local listings for time and station information. The broadcast can also be seen on cable's TV ONE Sundays at 6:00 a.m. (EST). for more information about BLACK ENTERPRISE television broadcast and video.

About Our World with Black Enterprise
Our World with Black Enterprise
is a weekly, half-hour television series that spotlights the contemporary African American experience. Hosted by author, activist, and academic Marc Lamont Hill and co-produced by Chicago-based Central City Productions, the nationally syndicated program features news, entertainment, roundtable discussions, and special interest stories about African Americans from all walks of life. The program debuted in September 2006.

For digital press inquiries contact Patricia Césaire, Director, Digital PR & Marketing, at 646.841.4568 and

For inquiries and interviews about BLACK ENTERPRISE contact Andrew Wadium, Director of Media Relations, at 212.886.9598 and

For digital press inquiries contact:
Patricia Césaire
Director, Digital PR & Marketing
Email Contact
For inquiries and interviews about BLACK ENTERPRISE contact:
Andrew Wadium
Director of Media Relations
Email Contact

Shooting of Daniel Covington Leaves the Black Community in an Uproar

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Daniel Covington is a former football player for The University of Louisville. His recent shooting death has been the subject of controversy in the southern urban center of Louisville, Kentucky. Covington was shot at 2:30 a.m. in downtown Louisville, Kentucky on September 16. The shooter was Isaiah Howes, who happens to be a former baseball star for the same school as his victim. The shooting allegedly took place after Covington attacked Howe by reaching into his car and punching him. The incident occurred after a prior altercation at a local bar. Howe shot through his brother's hand and hit Covington in the torso. He died at the scene of the shooting.
The shooting of Daniel Covington has led to an uproar in the black communities of Louisville and nearby Lexington. Many residents are angry that the shooter has not been charged for the incident, in spite of the fact that many claim he left the scene. They also wonder why Howes chose to pull out a gun to shoot someone in a fist fight.
The attorney for Isaiah Howes says that his client was a victim as well. He argues that the shooting was in self-defense and that Howes had no choice but to use the gun. He also denies that his client used any racial slurs toward Covington, as some have indicated.

Click to read.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Dr. King vs. Obama: What Would One Say About the Other?

by Mike Green, Huffington Post

When unemployment in Black America topped 16 percent and Black teen unemployment skyrocketed to an outrageous 45 percent this summer, the voices of outrage were muffled in the pockets of a few media that cared to cover the crisis. The majority of media wrung their collective hands over 9 and 10 percent unemployment challenges in White America, with overall teen unemployment hovering at 23 percent.

Dirty Secret

"A dirty little secret is that many jobs are not going to come back," says Johnathan Holifield, founder of Trim Tab System, LLC, a personal development and organizational leadership methodology, which applies innovation concepts and tools to generate exponential impact.

"Under the old model, recovery meant increased productivity, which meant increased hiring, Holifield said. "That is no longer the case. Because of the ingenious uses and applications and adoptions of new technology throughout our economy, we will continue to experience productivity growth but we will not have the level of job replacement and hiring that our recoveries in the past have been accustomed to."

Dear President Obama ...

Dr. Boyce Watkins, founder of Your Black World, underscores Holifield's point. He wrote a public letter to President Barack Obama that stated in part:

"In addition to massive unemployment, wealth inequality in America remains a persistent problem, causing African Americans to bear the brunt of this economic crisis in ways that are unimaginable to other Americans. Our homes are facing foreclosure more often and we are less able to rely on a source of background wealth to help us get through the toughest times.

"Yet, while we are the least prepared for the recession, we are being hit with a downturn that is twice as forceful as that being experienced by the rest of America. In fact, even after the recession is over, our unemployment rate will probably be as high or higher than the rate that white Americans are agonizing over right now. The United Nations has investigated this issueas a human rights violation, because it appears that we live in a nation that accepts a black underclass as a default way of life.

"To this point, your administration has remained disturbingly silent on the issue of black unemployment. The silence is deafening, but the economic hardship is loud and clear. I am concerned that many of your key economic advisers are unable or unwilling to process and empathize with the depths of black economic misery in America."

Never-Ending Recession

Dr. Watkins called on President Obama to institute political efforts and policy measures that would help create urban jobs through congressional legislation and generate more government contracts with African American companies.

At, Dr. Watkins made a compelling case that suggests even when the economy recovers, the burden of unemployment for Black America will still be in double digits while the nation celebrates a long-awaited return to prosperity. He states:

"Our country spent 400 years firmly placing black folks at the bottom of the social totem poll, only allowing us to recently participate as laborers in the American economic system.

"The conclusion is that even during good economic times, it is acceptable in the eyes of the Obama Administration for black unemployment to be worse than it is for whites during a recession. The recession will never end for us."


Click to read.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Prominent Arkansas Pastor Resigns After Sex Scandal

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Bishop Steven Arnold, a prominent pastor in Little Rock, Arkansas resigned this week after admitting to an affair with a female in his congregation. He was the pastor at First Baptist Church, where he's had the post for 21 years.
Bishop Arnold's revelation to his congregation led to the church's Board of Elders accepting his letter of resignation swiftly and issuing a statement:

"It is with a heavy heard that we accept the resignation of our pastor. Under his leadership, we have experienced tremendous growth, both spiritually and numerically. We love and deeply appreciate all that he has done for us through God's enablement these past 21 years. In our efforts to curtail speculation and gossip, the Board of Elders made the decision to be more specific about what led to Bishop Arnold's resignation. But out of respect and sensitivity to the families and all that are involved, we will not release any more information other than this. We prayerfully hope that the public will show the same respect and be considerate of the feelings of family members and our church during this difficult time."


Click to read.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dr. Boyce Watkins on MSNBC: Why are companies not hiring?


Click here to watch Dr. Boyce Watkins on CNBC explaining why corporations aren’t hiring across America.  Black Scholarship in Action

Dr. Boyce Watkins Discusses 'Is Corporate America Doing Enough to Rebuild the Economy' on CNBC

Dr. Boyce Watkins Discusses 'Is Corporate America Doing Enough to Rebuild the Economy' on CNBC

Monday, October 4, 2010

Boyce Watkins and Rev. Al Sharpton Discuss CNN's Firing of Rick Sanchez

Boyce Watkins and Rev. Al Sharpton Discuss CNN's Firing of Rick Sanchez. ;

Dr. Julianne Malveaux: The March Is Over, Now What?

According to the news media "tens of thousands" of people attended the One Nation Working Together Rally, or the 10.2.10 March that was held at the Lincoln Memorial on October 2, 2010.  I'd have liked to be there, but Bennett College for Women held our own mobilization, a weekend that celebrated new buildings, new energy, our Friends and Family Weekend, a phenomenal play, a magnificent donation of art to our Steele Hall Gallery, and so many other moments of celebration.  Still, there were more than a dozen Bennett students and faculty, including Professor Karla McLucas, and senior star Erica Harris, on the bus from Greensboro present at the march.

            It seems that some folks are drawing a line in the sand, saying "no more", being firm and focused on issues of social and economic justice.  It's important to affirm the fact that we will never go back.  The day after people gathered in Washington, Bennett College celebrated its Founders' Day with an address from former US Ambassador to South Africa, Dr. James A. Joseph, who spoke about activism and oscillation, about the ways rivers weave and wind their ways through our consciousness.  Dr. Joseph told Bennett women that we have an obligation to be activists, and he put activism in perspective. (We will be posting his talk on the Bennett website this week).

Click to read.

Would TI Go to Prison If He Were Lindsay Lohan or Paris Hilton?

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University 

It's being reported that the rapper T.I. (aka Clifford Harris) has a probation revocation hearing coming up on October 15. The rapper was arrested for drug possession with his wife, Tameka "Tiny" Cottle. The incident occurred on September 2 of this year, and they were allegedly in possession of Codeine, Ecstasy and Marijuana, which was uncovered in what police say was a routine traffic stop.

I spoke with someone who is familiar with the case against T.I. I asked him if T.I. was going back to prison. He said that while he isn't sure what the rapper's fate will be, there is an inherent contradiction in his case. While we can almost expect that T.I. will be punished for his latest violation of the law, the same can't be said for other celebs, like Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton. Both of these young women have been arrested time and time again for one offense after another. In each case, they are typically given a slap on the wrist.

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The NAACP and Other Groups March for One Nation: Can We Really Achieve These Goals?

Activists gather at the Lincoln Memorial to participate in the One Nation Working Together rally to promote job creation, diversity and tolerance.

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The One Nation March took place this weekend in Washington. Saturday, thousands of Americans gathered together to march for jobs, equality and education. The concept of the march is a very good one, and I am sure the execution was extraordinary. I have to say, however, that the marketing of the event left much to be desired.
In fact, I am willing to bet that as you read this article, you knew almost nothing about this march. Perhaps you heard a whimper or two about it, but you probably haven't heard NAACP President Ben Jealous on the airwaves speaking about the event. You probably haven't seen very many news stories on national media outlets about the march. If you google search the term "One Nation March" and click on the news section of google, you see a few articles in places like News Busters and The Sky Valley Chronicle.


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Scholarship in Action: Black Profs Debate Homosexuality and the Black Church

bishop eddie long scandal and conversation about black homosexuality


by Dr. Boyce Watkins and Dr. Jeff Gardere – AOL Black Voices

Dr. Jeff Gardere and I both agree that the recent gay sex scandal of Pastor Eddie Long has opened a chasm in the black church and the black community that needs to be filled with discussion and most importantly, understanding. The relationship between the black church and the black community is one that begins for most of us as children and never ends. It is time to begin a conversation that can heal a lot of people.

My Take – The Black Church
The black church is one of the deepest and most significant institutions in the African American community. Anyone who struggles with a problem in their lives is encouraged to turn to the church for answers. If you want to know why you made it through your surgery, got a better job, or found a way to get off crack, there's probably a church on your corner willing to provide you with a convenient explanation. The church is in our blood and our pastors are our spiritual fathers.
Many black folks understand the church before they ever even understand God. This socialization puts a psychological stranglehold on us: Many of us are taught to condemn those who are different, whether it is because they are gay, not baptized or simply believe what we don't believe. Some accept a life of hypocrisy, since the idea of being marginalized by the church is far worse than the challenge of maintaining a double life. We learn how to twist and manipulate the bible to help us explain away every socially deviant behavior and moral imperfection.


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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Dr. Boyce Watkins: CNN’s Rick Sanchez is Punished for Talking about Race

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Rick Sanchez was the coolest brother on CNN. No, he wasn't a brother in the technical sense of the word, but he's the closest we might get on CNN for quite some time. Rick was the host of "Rick's List," a daily CNN show that featured the latest and most relevant news and commentary. As a Cuban American, Rick related to the world in a way that was unique and authentic. He cared about issues that affected the poor and minorities, and he used his platform for a productive purpose.
Why am I talking about Rick Sanchez in past tense? Because he was fired by CNN this week.


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Friday, October 1, 2010

Wilmer Leon: Does the President Listen to Gangsta Rap?

by Dr. Wilmer Leon

During a recent interview with Rolling Stone, President Obama was asked about his musical preferences, he replied in part, “My iPod now has about 2,000 songs,…There's still a lot of Stevie Wonder, a lot of Bob Dylan, a lot of Rolling Stones, a lot of R&B, a lot of Miles Davis and John Coltrane. …A lot of classical music. …my rap palate has greatly improved. Jay-Z used to be sort of what predominated, but now I've got a little Nas and a little Lil Wayne and some other stuff, but I would not claim to be an expert…”

Soul, folk, rock, R&B, jazz, “A lot of classical”, and some rap; sounds like a fairly diverse musical palate.  This represents the musical tastes of a number of American’s of the president’s generation, especially those with school age children.  Diversity is good, unless you are reading the Fox Nation website.  According to the Huffington Post, Fox Nation took this description and briefly posted the headline, “President of the United States Loves Gansta Rap” with photos of tattoo laden Nas and Lil’ Wayne thrown in for “flava”.


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