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By Earl Ofari Hutchinson | December 19, 2006
City officials in Vidor, Texas, screamed foul when news broke that their town was once one of America's notorious "sundown towns" for blacks. In the segregation era, that was the town fathers' not-so-discreet way of warning black people that they would be jailed, assaulted or worse if they were caught in town after dark. Vidor officials vehemently insisted that they have long since disavowed that naked, in-your-face racism. They contend that the press latched onto the town's woeful past to grab cheap, sensationalist headlines.
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NEWS
August 24, 2014
The commentary, "A necessary conversation" (Aug 17), by Loyola University Maryland assistant professor Karsonya Wise Whitehead, in which she claims that our nation needs to have "a serious conversation about race," is another see-no-evil, speak-no-evil, hear-no-evil lamentation about the state of race relations in America that is sure to offend nobody and solve nothing. Ms. Whitehead uses the word "racism" only once in her long article. The way she sees it, what we need to be doing is "sitting down in small diverse community groups and wrestling with the question of how race and our feelings about it are still dividing our country.
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NEWS
By Kaye Wise Whitehead | February 15, 2012
In 1926, Carter G. Woodson, through his organization, the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (later renamed the Association for the Study of African American Life and History), founded and promoted Negro History Week. He selected February because Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass' birthdays fell during this month. His desire was for Americans to recognize and celebrate the achievements and accomplishments of black people. The response was overwhelming, as black schools, black churches and black and white community leaders around the country rallied behind this call and pushed Negro History Week to the forefront.
NEWS
By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun | April 5, 2014
Morgan State University is working with a group that intends to bring Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan to speak on campus this fall, a university spokesman said Saturday. Spokesman Clint Coleman said a local Nation of Islam chapter, the Student Government Association and the Collegiate 100 of Morgan State University were organizing the event, planned as a two-day affair with panels and lectures with Farrakhan as the keynote speaker. Coleman said the organizers were originally looking at a date this month, but due to issues with scheduling and venue are now working to set a date in the fall.
NEWS
By MICHAEL OLESKER | January 9, 1997
From Ebonics, I know a little bit, though it isn't my native tongue. Personally, I was raised on Yiddishonics, which is a variation on Polishonics and Italonics and, for that matter, the newly controversial Ebonics. It's a simple enough translation. You take the juiciest bits of your own people's dialect, and you mix touches of it with standard English, and from this you get the thing we've always called America.In Yiddishonics, generations of Jews rooted in eastern Europe led with the verb ("Make the window shut, it's cold outside")
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | December 28, 2013
The Eastern Shore-born activist who created Kwanzaa told a standing-room-only crowd the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture on Saturday that the post-Christmas holiday is a celebration of "all that is good in life. " Maulana Karenga, who launched the seven-day observance of African culture and values nearly a half-century ago, received an enthusiastic reception from hundreds who jammed the museum's theater and overloaded its elevators. "We're not afraid of saying we're celebrating black people," said Karenga, chairman of the Africana studies department at California State University in Long Beach.
NEWS
By Andrea K. Walker and Andrea K. Walker,Sun Staff | April 1, 2007
Havana -- To look at her meager two-room house that doubles as a storefront souvenir shop, it may not seem that Vivian Madrigal Ponjuan has a lot in life. But she says she is fortunate because she has a roof that doesn't leak, running water and a refrigerator full of food. The fact that she has a warm place to sleep is a gift of the revolution more than 40 years ago that put Fidel Castro in power, she said. Life before the revolution was hard for her family, who, like many blacks, lived in extreme poverty.
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By Mary Carole McCauley, The Baltimore Sun | October 8, 2012
For more that two decades, author Emily Bernard has been fascinated by Carl Van Vechten, a white man who played a seminal - and controversial - role in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and 1930s. She was in turns appalled by Vechten's air of entitlement, amused by some of his provocations and moved by his devotion to individual artists. (For instance, Van Vechten lobbied authorities to erect a nude, anatomically correct statue in New York's Central Park of the African-American activist James Weldon Johnson.
NEWS
July 17, 2012
Regarding Leonard Pitts' column about the impact of voter ID laws on African-Americans, it's time to squelch the outrage and be sensible ("With its voting rights threatened, black America is silent," July 15). Do we want to continue to proclaim our outrage and, as a result, let those votes be lost? These dastardly laws are in place and nothing can be done about them. So let's move on. Let's make sure that those now without valid photo IDs get them. These are mostly poor black people.
NEWS
July 7, 2011
Once again. African-Americans and poor people are the victims of politics. First, they closed the pool in Druid Hill Park on weekdays. It was only open on the weekend until late June so children who can't afford to go to swim clubs had to suffer. Next, they combined Stone Soul Picnic with the African-American Festival. They have also moved the Caribbean Festival out of Druid Hill Park. The sad part about what's been happening is that it's coming under the watch of an African-American mayor.
NEWS
By Kaye Wise Whitehead | February 18, 2014
In the days leading up to the end of the Michael Dunn "loud music" case - in which a white Florida man shot and killed a 17-year-old black teen after getting into an argument over the boy's so-called "thug" music - I was overwhelmed with feelings of restlessness, worry, frustration and fear. They were the same feelings I had at the end of the George Zimmerman trial. The same ones I have when I think about the day when my sons will be old enough to drive or walk to the store by themselves.
NEWS
By Leonard Pitts Jr and By Leonard Pitts Jr | January 5, 2014
Fair warning: This is about the "Duck Dynasty" controversy. Yes, I know. I'm sick of it, too. Still, relying upon my First Amendment right to freedom of speech, I will make a few observations about Phil Robertson, the grizzled Louisiana duck hunter turned reality TV star whose comments about black and gay people recently got him suspended -- and then unsuspended -- by A&E. If you find my observations disagreeable you may, relying upon your own...
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | December 28, 2013
The Eastern Shore-born activist who created Kwanzaa told a standing-room-only crowd the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture on Saturday that the post-Christmas holiday is a celebration of "all that is good in life. " Maulana Karenga, who launched the seven-day observance of African culture and values nearly a half-century ago, received an enthusiastic reception from hundreds who jammed the museum's theater and overloaded its elevators. "We're not afraid of saying we're celebrating black people," said Karenga, chairman of the Africana studies department at California State University in Long Beach.
NEWS
By John McIntyre and The Baltimore Sun | December 22, 2013
In the recent kerfuffle over the remarks of Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty , one salient fact has not been much remarked on: What he has been excoriated for saying used to be mainstream. What he said, that homosexuality is sinful and abhorrent, and that black people were better off, and happier, in the Jim Crow era, would have been largely unremarkable a few years ago. After all, the Roman Catholic Church and several Protestant denominations continue to call homosexuality unnatural and sinful, and homosexual acts were within living memory illegal in several states.* And you can still find scores of Southern apologists for the era of segragation.  What has changed is that those views no longer find uncritical acceptance among the public.
NEWS
By Leonard Pitts Jr and By Leonard Pitts Jr | December 8, 2013
You want to know the worst part? It isn't the incident where a police officer stopped a man at the 207 Quickstop convenience store and threw his purchases -- cans of Red Bull -- to the sidewalk. It isn't the incident where an officer stopped a woman outside that Miami Gardens store, pawed through her purse, then emptied the contents onto the ground and kicked at them. It isn't the dozens of times Earl Sampson -- never convicted of anything more serious than possession of marijuana -- has been arrested for trespassing while working as a clerk at the self same store.
NEWS
By Ian Duncan, The Baltimore Sun | November 13, 2013
The gap between rates for black and white people arrested on marijuana possession charges widened significantly in the past decade, according to Maryland data released by the American Civil Liberties Union. Meredith Curtis, a spokeswoman for the organization, said that the trend is particularly troubling at a time when public opinion is shifting toward legalizing the drug. In Maryland, 51 percent of respondents favored legalization and 40 opposed it, according to a Goucher College poll published Friday.
NEWS
August 6, 2012
The CEO of Chick-fil-A did more than express a view denigrating gay relationships ("Fast food activism," Aug. 1). The company spends millions to attack the very lives and security of people in same-sex relationships. As a result of anti-gay legislation like the Defense of Marriage Act, insurance companies do not offer private annuity contracts to same-sex couples who want to provide for their retirement. Social Security benefits do not extend to survivor relationships in same-sex unions.
NEWS
By Elmer P. Martin | November 26, 1997
RECENTLY, Christie's, the famed New York auction house, became the target of a decades-old struggle of African Americans: The fight for black cultural survival.After a public outcry, Christie's withdrew from sale several 19th-century slavery documents slated to be auctioned to the highest bidder. Instead, Christie's will donate the items to museums.Equating Christie's aborted sale with cultural exploitation is a continuation of a cultural war that gained momentum among black people after Emancipation.
NEWS
By Leonard Pitts Jr | August 25, 2013
"So even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. " -- Martin Luther King Jr., Aug. 28, 1963 This is "tomorrow. " Meaning that unknowable future whose unknowable difficulties Martin Luther King invoked half a century ago when he told America about his dream. If you could somehow magically bring him here, that tomorrow would likely seem miraculous to him, faced as he was with a time when segregation, police brutality, employment discrimination and voter suppression were widely and openly practiced.
NEWS
By David Horsey | July 23, 2013
A string of misperceptions have driven the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman tragedy from the very beginning, including the public misperception that perfect justice can be found in a court of law. The misperception that propelled events from the very start was Mr. Zimmerman's assumption that a black kid in a hoodie did not belong in his neighborhood. If he had known Mr. Martin was the son of a local resident with no other mission than to reach home with the package of Skittles he had just purchased, Mr. Zimmerman would not have followed the young man. In fact, if he had simply not held a stereotype in his head that a young African American in a hoodie is very likely a criminal, Mr. Martin would be alive today and Mr. Zimmerman would not have his own life turned upside down.
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