Thursday, December 24, 2009

Smorgasbord, yum yum

So this morning (Christmas Eve) I woke up my computer just before dawn, and the horrible, spectral face of Jacob Marley stared at me from the screen, chains a-clanking. The chains were in the form of half a dozen browser windows and multiple tabs open with various couldas, wouldas, and shouldas to haunt me. With end-of-semester crunch slammed up against holiday crunch, as well as family events, certain posts just didn't happen and it's safe to say they won't. Yes, you're right, "I been there before" to quote from the late Ralph Wiley's favorite American author, but obviously I haven't learned the life lesson yet. Herewith are a few items that have piled up, with hat tips to Prometheus 6, Jack and Jill Politics, DarkStar Spouts Off, and probably a couple of others.

December 23, 2009
Latino Leaders Use Churches in Census Bid

MIAMI — Fearing that millions of illegal immigrants may not be counted in the 2010 census, Latino leaders are mobilizing a nationwide drive to urge Hispanics to participate in the survey, including an intense push this week in evangelical Christian churches.

Latino groups contend that there was an undercount of nearly one million Latinos in the 2000 census, affecting the drawing of Congressional districts and the distribution of federal money. Hispanic organizations are far better organized for next year’s census, but they say that if illegal immigrants — an estimated eight million of whom are Latino — are not included, the undercount could be much greater.

I don't link much to the grumpier, more conservative corners of the blogosphere, but here's an exception from DarkStar Spouts Off (hey, it's the holidays):

Another "Acting White" Data Point

This is more for me than for you. But if you want to read it, enjoy.

A Problem We Can Agree Upon

There is a problem. On that, nearly everyone agrees. But to what forces should one attribute the black-white achievement gap? Sometimes it seems everyone has a confident opinion. Explanations for the persistent gap in education achievement between African-American and white students range from a decline in personal responsibility among black Americans, to unenlightened education policy, to lazy teachers, to entrenched poverty.

A three-click serendipitous follow-through led me to this 2006 article from Yes! Magazine's site by Van Jones, from his days prior to being a sacrificial lamb on the conservative altar, offered up by the Obama White House or at least without strong objection from there. I link here because of the continuing issue, especially visible in the West and Southwest, of Black/Latino solidarity. I mean, if such solidarity was a done deal, we wouldn't need to keep talking about it. The "common enemy" of a system that wasn't really designed for us is not enough to keep us together without effort.

Shout "VIVA!" Anyhow: On Being Black at a Latino March
by Van Jones
posted May 04, 2006

At this week's "Dia Sin Inmigrantes/Day Without Immigrants" march in San Francisco, I saw a beautiful, exciting and hopeful vision of the future of this country.

I also caught a glimpse of a familiar past, fading away. And I shed a few tears for both.

"Are we considered full people yet?" coverage from the sports world reports on the fate of the female ski jumpers. The Supreme Court of Canada has decided that the International Olympic Committee isn't subject to the Canadian Charter of Rights, no matter how much money they bring to the country. Oh, wait, let me reword that.

Female Ski Jumpers Lose Last Chance to Join Vancouver Games
(retitled from: Women Ski Jumpers Lose Last Chance to Join Vancouver Games, and yes I wish I had the screen shot but the URL reflects the original)

...and... from the local Vancouver BC paper:

Female ski jumpers lose final bid to compete at Vancouver 2010 Olympics

Back to good old traditional US-side segregation & diversity issues... especially the class vs. race debate... often framed as "can't we just say there are poor people in need of help, without acknowledging any of that nasty old racism?" Let's check Chicago:

City Schools’ New Criteria for Diversity Raise Fears
Published: December 19, 2009

The Chicago public schools’ response to a recent court desegregation ruling — a plan to use students’ social and economic profiles instead of race to achieve classroom diversity — is raising fears that it will undermine the district’s slow and incremental progress on racial diversity.

But on a positive note, you have surely heard about the Crouch quadruplets of Danbury, Connecticut, all getting admitted to Yale, the four of them, yes indeed. And if you haven't, shame on ya, but that's why you're here:

Boola Boola, Boola Boola: Yale Says Yes, 4 Times

The above-linked NY Times story by Jacques Steinberg is such a breath of fresh air that I won't quibble over the things in such articles that bloggers usually quibble over. He didn't directly go down that credit-to-their-race road, so again, no quibbles this time. NECN did comment on their, ahem, "intelligence and demeanor" in a rather Biden-esque way but their video has plenty of good footage of the quads (the embed isn't Blogger-friendly so it's a link to the page):

Enough smorgasbord for one day. Thanks for visiting!

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