Ethnicity Feed

Senator Harry Reid and President Barack Obama: We Can’t Handle the Truth [VIDEO] [POLL]

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is under fire big time for saying that Barack Obama could be president because he is light-skinned and doesn't speak with a Negro dialect unless he has to. Those comments were made in either 2006 or 2007; the timeline is in dispute and that's not really important in this situation. What is clear is that Reid unwisely voiced points that were thought by many. Except for that antiquated 'Negro' terminology, Senator Reid made the same assessment a lot of whites probably made and some blacks also; let's not kid ourselves.

To be politically attractive, candidates are advised to look and speak a certain way. Candidate Barack Obama fit that mold and his Ivy League education sealed the deal. Am I a Harry Reid fan? No but I'm not hating on him either. I also don't think his comments were nearly as racially-charged as Trent Lott's 'Dixiecrat' comment, that 'Barack the Magic Negro' song and controversial comments by others.

The GOP is attempting to keep this topic in the media by claiming 'double standard' in the treatment of Republicans who have made racial comments compared to Democrats who do the same. Should Harry Reid resign? No. Is Harry Reid a racist? I don't know. Is he out-of-touch? Absolutely --- as are the folks over at the Census Bureau.

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Senator Boxer's Remarks "Racial" and "Condescending" [VIDEO]

Harry Alford, head of the National Black Chamber of Commerce dresses down Senator Barbara Boxer during a hearing of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, of which Boxer is the chair.

Alford addressed climate change and Boxer proceeded to read a NAACP resolution which referenced including black colleges and universities in the research and development of alternative energy sources. She also mentioned the 100 Black men increasing the ire of Alford.

 




Mississippi Town Elects First Black Mayor [VIDEO]

Mayor James A. Young

James A. Young was sworn in as Mayor of Philadelphia, Mississippi yesterday. That is a sign of tremendous change for this state, this town, this nation. If you remember the movie "Mississippi Burning," Philadelphia is the backdrop of that movie that focused on the Ku Klux Klan, civil rights battles in the South and the murder of three young men who symbolize the change this nation has overcome.

Forty-five years after the murder of Andrew Goodman, James Chaney and Michael Schwerner gave their lives so that blacks in Mississippi would have the right to vote. When the murders occurred, I was very young but they are part of the reason why I value the right to vote so highly.

The Real Mississippi Burning Trials

I remember the sacrifice endured during the civil rights era. I remember blacks and whites united in the fight for civil rights and the patience my parents and other adults employed to get through those difficult times.

That makes the victory of James A. Young all the sweeter as he was elected in a majority white town. Change has definitely come to America. God Bless Mayor Young and May God Bless the people of Philadelphia, Mississippi. Happy 4th of July!



Florida GOP Courts Black Voters on Juneteenth

Today is Juneteenth. The Republican Party of Florida sent out the message below regarding the celebration:

Republicans Herald "Juneteenth" And The End Of Slavery
 

Tallahassee - Representative Jennifer Carroll, Chairperson of the Republican Party of Florida’s African American Republican Leadership Council, and RPOF Chairman Jim Greer today released the following statement regarding "Juneteenth," a celebration recognizing June 19, 1865, the day the last American slaves learned that they were free:

 

"'Juneteenth' is a celebration of the day when the last remaining slaves received word that President Lincoln had signed the Emancipation Proclamation, resulting in their freedom. As the Party of Abraham Lincoln, the Republican Party of Florida is built on the foundation of freedom, and this principle is as important to us today it was so many years ago, when President Lincoln helped to found the Republican Party as the anti-slavery party," said Representative Carroll. "Over 140 years, we have championed these convictions. From the Civil Rights laws of the 1860s to the landmark 1954 decision in Brown vs. the Board of Education, which called for the end of segregation in public schools, the Republican Party has always been an advocate for civil rights."

 

"Republicans are still spearheading reform today, including efforts to increase access to homeownership among African Americans, provide quality education for all children, and ensure strong support for small businesses. We are proud to share the same core beliefs of lower taxes, less government, and more freedom as many African American families, and this is why we will continue to fight for the African American vote," said Chairman Greer.

 

 
That is a very nice message but what does it really mean when leading Republicans such as Rush Limbaugh continue to spew hatred and treason in this country? And what does it mean when GOP activists such as Rusty DePass feel comfortable openly insulting first Lady Michelle Obama?
 
Is the GOP finally getting it? Rep. Jennifer Carroll, my sorority sister, is a very attractive black woman. Is she the face the GOP want us to envision instead of Rush? There's a lot more work to do to overcome the damage some Republicans have done. I guess this is a move in the right direction for Florida but action speaks louder than words.
 
 
 

Tancredo Does It Again and The Truth About La Raza

Former Colorado U.S. Congressman Tom Tancredo ignited controversy here in Miami almost three years ago with his characterization of the area as a third world country. He made other statements that were far from complimentary and let's just say things got ugly. He's now surpassed that deed bycalling Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor a racist because she is a member of the Latino civil rights organization, La Raza. He went on to equate La Raza to the "KKK without the hoods or the nooses."

La Raza chief Janet Murguia disputed Tancredo's description of the organization and refuted his translation of the group's name and motto among other things.

The Translation of Our Name: National Council of La Raza

Many people incorrectly translate our name, "La Raza," as "the race." While it is true that one meaning of "raza" in Spanish is indeed "race," in Spanish, as in English and any other language, words can and do have multiple meanings. As noted in several online dictionaries, "La Raza" means "the people" or "the community." Translating our name as "the race" is not only inaccurate, it is factually incorrect. "Hispanic" is an ethnicity, not a race. As anyone who has ever met a Dominican American, Mexican American, or Spanish American can attest, Hispanics can be and are members of any and all races.

The term "La Raza" has its origins in early 20th century Latin American literature and translates into English most closely as "the people" or, according to some scholars, as "the Hispanic people of the New World." The term was coined by Mexican scholar José Vasconcelos to reflect the fact that the people of Latin America are a mixture of many of the world's races, cultures, and religions. Mistranslating "La Raza" to mean "the race" implies that it is a term meant to exclude others. In fact, the full term coined by Vasconcelos, "La Raza Cósmica," meaning the "cosmic people," was developed to reflect not purity but the mixture inherent in the Hispanic people. This is an inclusive concept, meaning that Hispanics share with all other peoples of the world a common heritage and destiny.


Tom Delay adds to the mayhem and foolishness and injects the name of LULAC. Hmmm...


Surprise...Surprise...President Obama Picks Sotomayor

Who's kidding who? It was the best kept secret that President Barack Obama would nominate Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. The President clearly understands the need for diversity on the Supreme Court. That being said, he also understands that the appointment of the next Justice would not compromise the qualifications of the position.

It's not a surprise that a few vocal Republicans have already gone on the attack questioning Sotomayor's intellectual capacity. Give me a break. Is that the best they can come up with? She's a liberal...she's an activist. Is she a socialist also?

Conventional wisdom dictates the Republicans will soon quiet the vocal Party minority that continues to weaken the Party as a whole. This Party of No stuff is really getting old and boring.


Rupert Murdoch's Apology

OK, media mogul Rupert Murdoch apologized for the New York Post chimpanzee editorial cartoon. Since Murdoch is infamously known for NOT apologizing and NOT succumbing to external pressure, the apology is a major coup.

I respect Murdoch for making the public apology but some civil rights activists are still keeping the pressure on Murdoch and the New York Post. 

You see, the Murdoch apology, when finally made, was several days late. It would have been more effective and better received had he apologized right away. Instead, the insulting comments by Post editor Col Allan fueled the protest fire while Murdoch did nothing to stop it.

Speaking of Allan, if Murdoch really wanted to make a statement about racial sensitivity, he’d fire Allan with the quickness but he hasn't.

Since the Murdoch apology came days after the Post’s media drubbing and their parent company’s stock dropped, perhaps the apology was empty and only driven by economics.

 

© 2009, Vanessa: Unplugged!, www.vanessabyers.net

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New York Post Chimpanzee Editorial Cartoon: Still Looking for the Humor

Sharpton-lee The furor over the New York Post chimpanzee editorial cartoon is far from over for me. You see, I was immediately angered by it for several reasons; its racist connotation being one of them.

I observed executives from the Post attempt to deflect the backlash from the cartoon to protest leader, Rev. Al Sharpton. I don’t always agree with the Reverend but that was just wrong on their part. I also heard their so-called apology and learned of the company’s internal turmoil because of the cartoon.

I tried to understand the perspective of folks, even blacks, who thought the cartoon wasn’t as bad as the publicity that exploded around it. I still wasn’t able to make that stretch. I really tired objectivity but it is what it is.

You know, even if you don’t think the cartoon was racist, there was no humor to be made of a woman tragically disfigured by a chimpanzee and the death of that chimpanzee. There was no humor in two police officers shooting an animal. Was the animal a representation of President Obama? Perhaps it was supposed represent Nancy Pelosi or even Congress. It's just wrong.

There have been calls for the firing of the Post’s editor. I support that unequivocally. I also support the demand for a real public apology from the New York Post.

It was pointed out that President Obama and New York Gov. Paterson did not make a big deal of the situation. Gov. Paterson accepted the Post’s apology. Well, my response to that is, “Did you expect them to go Eric Holder and say what they really feel? I think not.”

This situation could be over quickly. The Post’s lame attempt at an apology is far more acquiescence than they’ve offered in the past. I do hope the NAACP and other civil rights organizations will not cave under the pressure.

Rev. Sharpton’s spotlight on the media influence is an issue that definitely deserves more coverage but by which media outlet since he owns so many.

Nypostchimpcartoon

 

© 2009, Vanessa: Unplugged!, www.vanessabyers.net

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Michael Steele: The New Face of the New Republican Party?

Anything is possible in the United States of America. The GOP elected a black man, Michael Steele, Chair of the Republican National Committee.

  

Clearly, Michael Steele, has President Barack Obama to thank for his victory. The GOP knows that the demographics of this country are changing and they’d better get on board or be run over.  Steele’s election and the subsequent work to be done by the Party will signal whether tit lives or dies.

Some, in the GOP, will find it difficult to have Steele as a Party leader. Others fully expect Steele to be leader in name only. Let’s see how this really works out.

If Steele assumes his true leadership role, many in the GOP, may feel alienated. Like President Obama, Steele should also expect to be challenged by Republican traditionalists as he tries to reshape their Party.  My, how things have changed. The Republicans have finally opened their eyes. It only took six rounds of voting and a vote of 91-77 to do it.

 

Let’s see, Michael Steele beat out the guy who sent out those CDs with “Barack the Magic Negro” on it and  a guy who was a member of a “whites-only” club for years. Yeah, that’s change you can believe in.

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Blagojevich Controversy Goes Racial [POLL]

You can say what you like about embattled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, but his appointment of Former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris to the seat vacated by President-elect Barack Obama was a brilliant move.

As expected, race has come to the forefront of this situation and Blagojevich can just sit back and watch the Democratic Party leaders squirm while tries to save himself. Now that President-elect Obama has gone on record siding with Democrat senate leaders, this political circus will continue.

It’s unfortunate that this situation has come to this; the people of Illinois are the real losers.