Charge dropped against white woman who called police on Black bird-watcher


This says a lot about American Justice, which appears to have one law for persons who are White and another for persons who are Black.

Not only does it emerge with white and black individuals encountering each other, but in many instances how the Forces of law and Order behave.

Granted we only see through the media those that the Media wish us to see, but there does appear to be many elements in the various American Societies who wish for the clocks to be turned back to before Slavery was abolished or was meant to.

If this had been in reverse how would it have proceeded, well, I believe that the charge would not have been dropped. In fact, I was surprised that a charge was even brought, especially against the white women, for the expected would have been an incorrect charge brought against the Black bird-watcher, so this has to be seen as some progress, but far from enough.

To be Black in America is far from good for those who are Black, especially when many of the Police forces can not be trusted.

Source: Charge dropped against white woman who called police on Black bird-watcher

The forgotten history of segregated swimming pools and amusement parks : The Conversation


Summers often bring a wave of childhood memories: lounging poolside, trips to the local amusement park, languid, steamy days at the beach.

These nostalgic recollections, however, aren’t held by all Americans.

Municipal swimming pools and urban amusement parks flourished in the 20th century. But too often, their success was based on the exclusion of African Americans.

As a social historian who has written a book on segregated recreation, I have found that the history of recreational segregation is a largely forgotten one. But it has had a lasting significance on modern race relations.

Swimming pools and beaches were among the most segregated and fought over public spaces in the North and the South.

White stereotypes of blacks as diseased and sexually threatening served as the foundation for this segregation. City leaders justifying segregation also pointed to fears of fights breaking out if whites and blacks mingled. Racial separation for them equaled racial peace.

These fears were underscored when white teenagers attacked black swimmers after activists or city officials opened public pools to blacks. For example, whites threw nails at the bottom of pools in Cincinnati, poured bleach and acid in pools with black bathers in St. Augustine, Florida, and beat them up in Philadelphia. In my book, I describe how in the late 1940s there were major swimming pool riots in St. Louis, Baltimore, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles.

Exclusion based on ‘safety’

Despite civil rights statutes in many states, the law did not come to African Americans’ aid. In Charlotte, North Carolina, for example, the chairman of the Charlotte Park and Recreation Commission in 1960 admitted that “all people have a right under law to use all public facilitates including swimming pools.” But he went on to point out that “of all public facilities, swimming pools put the tolerance of the white people to the test.”

His conclusion: “Public order is more important than rights of Negroes to use public facilities.” In practice, black swimmers were not admitted to pools if the managers felt “disorder will result.” Disorder and order defined accessibility, not the law.

 

Source: The forgotten history of segregated swimming pools and amusement parks : The Conversation

Meme on Why Black and White Working Class People Should Reject Racism


Beastrabban\'s Weblog

I also found this meme on why the White working class should reject racism and distrust politicians, who are trying to stir up hatred against Blacks, from 1000 Natural Shocks. The originals at http://greybeard55.tumblr.com/image/136630560625. Be warned – it’s an over 18 site.

Working Class Anti-Racism

View original post

Autism while Black


Original post from New York Amsterdam News

‘……………..By JHODIE-ANN WILLIAMS

Shiloh.Iyanla_Downer-Rose_t580

If you’re Black, you’re not allowed to have a developmental or mental disorder. It’s an unwritten code passed down through generations. At least, that’s the general perception within our community. If you do, you’re not allowed to talk about it. It’s taboo.

However, we are living in a racially divided system that already places our kids at a disadvantage. We can’t afford to do the same. We can’t afford not to talk about it. We can’t afford not to acknowledge that Black children battle with psychological issues too, because our children will end up paying for it with their lives.

Renowned psychologist and author Dr. Jeff Gardere said that the outlook that people of color have when faced with the challenges of caring for children with special needs is connected to the access they have to help.

“Because we don’t have the resources and support that other cultures have, we are left to dealing with autism on our own, and therefore it’s a little bit more difficult for us to come to that realization and to find the resources that we need,” said Gardere. “But like any culture, we love our children, we love our children who have autism and want to support and help them grow in the healthiest way possible.”

Studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that African-American children get diagnosed with autism 18 to 24 months later than white children. Early diagnosis is crucial to countering some of the symptoms that come with autism.

Lorna Downer, a writer, activist and mother to Shiloh, her autistic teenage son, was able to get him diagnosed by 3 and a half years old—earlier than most Black children, but similar to the diagnosis time for whites.

“I pushed and demanded meetings. I think if I hadn’t done it, he would’ve been diagnosed much later,” said Downer. “You either get a late diagnosis or you fight and push to tell people that there’s something happening with my child that needs addressing.”

Shiloh began showing signs at 5 months, and by 9 months, Downer was sure something was off.

Last week, Darius McCollum, 50, was arrested again. This time he stole a Greyhound bus from the New York Port Authority. His first arrest came in 1981, when he was 15 and drove an E train from 34th Street to the World Trade Center. He memorized the subway system by the age of 8. In 34 years he has been arrested more than 30 times for stealing trains, buses, trespassing on transit property and impersonating an MTA worker. He has been sent to state prison—including the notorious Rikers Island—six times. McCollum, who is Black, has a fascination with mass transportation. He has Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism, and being fixated on a particular thing is one of the symptoms. After his latest arrest he said, “I’m stealing a plane next.” Prison has not deterred McCollum from committing these crimes, but perhaps something else could have—early detection of his disorder.

“If he is going to be charged with anything, then the people who have failed him—the clinical team that should’ve put some intervention in place from when he was a young teen—should be charged double,” said Downer.

Downer said that she’s sure that if McCollum’s school files were looked into that there would be warning signs about his condition. Perhaps they would find notes from teachers about class disruption, lack of eye contact, inability to understand social and emotional issues, awkward mannerisms or repetitive speech. These are all symptoms of Asperger’s, according to Autism Speaks, a leading advocacy organization—all of which were probably dismissed as McCollum misbehaving or “being weird.”

“Our children don’t physically look disabled, because they seem, outwardly, that they look like every other child,” said Downer. “People just assume that you’re a bad parent.”

Black parents need to be educated on the symptoms, testing and treatment options so that they can advocate for their children. When Downer, who also visits with families of autistic children to deliver training, visits different homes or support groups she sees the disparity.

“There’s usually one Black person or two. Majority are white,” said Downer.

A study from Autism Speaks indicated that regressive autism—losing early language and social skills—is twice as common in African-American children as whites. Before this new report, race was not noted as a dividing factor. Armed with this new information, Black parents should be diligent and ask why.

For years, the CDC has been scrutinized for withholding studies that link autism in African-Americans to vaccinations given to children before the age of 3. In 1996, it was reported that in 1989, the CDC was administering experimental vaccines to African-American and Latino children in Los Angeles without telling their parents that the drugs were experimental. During this year’s Million Man March, the Rev. Tony Muhammad, the Western Regional Representative for the Nation of Islam, took to the podium to reveal that Robert F. Kennedy Jr. told him some “shocking” and “terrible” news about the CDC in Atlanta. “It had been brought to our attention that the senior lead scientist for the Centers for Disease Control has admitted that the MMR vaccine and many of the vaccine shots have been genetically modified to attack Black and Latino boys,” said Muhammad. Over 70 years ago we had the infamous Tuskegee syphilis experiment, and it lasted 40 years. Nearly 30 years ago it was the CDC’s scandal in Los Angeles, which was kept quiet for nearly 10 years. Now, in 2015, it’s Georgia.

Kennedy has since denied that, that was the content of his conversation with Muhammad, according to reports from the Blaze, a news website founded by conservative radio and television personality Glenn Beck. Whatever the conversation was, the theory of autism being linked to vaccinations is a prevalent one. Downer believes that vaccinations stunted her son’s development.

“I have videos of him interacting with me when he was about 1, and then after his vaccines he seemed to regress again,” said Downer.

Changing how Black children are dealt with in the medical world begins with acknowledgement at home. It’s how we can get one step closer to making informed decisions about the welfare of our children. For more information on diagnosis, treatment, statistics or support groups, please visit thecolorofautism.org and autismspeaks.org.    ………….’

What Will It Take To End Unequal Treatment Of Blacks By The Police?


Original post from News One

http://player.theplatform.com/p/BCY3OC/Ha5BggifMuHL/embed/select/media/q2GnSvs34bIb

The death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore police custody is just the latest in a long line of cases fueling the current #BlackLivesMatter protest movement, which beg a coordinated solution.

Earlier this year, Angela Rye, Principal of Impact Strategies, Rev. Lennox Yearwood from the Hip Hop Caucus, and Chanelle Hardy, National Urban League‘s senior vice president for policy, discussed what can be done to end unequal treatment by the U.S. justice system.

Yearwood said in order to save our young men from being killed “at the hands of those that are supposed to protect and serve, our community must look at how we use our institutions to combat the issue.”

It isn’t just simply the issue of coming forth and saying, “OK, let’s deal with this #BlackLivesMatter,” but how do we empower organizations at this point and time in the 21st century, like the Urban League, like the NAACP, like the Black Caucus, but also new entities like #HandsUpDontShoot, like #BlackLivesMatter — which is being run by Black women and young people — like so many interesting organizations that are coming up now to deal with the …crisis that we’re facing.

Rye reminded the group that the focus for #BlackLivesMatter can’t only be on one gender. “It’s just not Black men, it’s also Black women.”

Hardy believes that our community won’t be able to “resolve this issue without really addressing the fact that implicit bias is a fact of life.”

We have stopped the conversation prematurely [by] talking about racism and “are you or are you not racist,” but there is a real important conversation about knowing that you are a biased human being, what are those biases, accepting them and making decisions as a result.

Watch Rye, Yearwood, and Hardy discuss what steps our community must take, in the video clip above.

For more information about the State of Black America Report, visit www.StateOfBlackAmerica.org or use the hashtag #SaveOurCities.  ……….’

These twins can teach us a lot about racial identity


Original post from Vox

‘…………..Updated by on March 3

Lucy and Maria Aylmer                            YouTube

 

“There’s a set of biracial twins in the UK who are turning heads because one is black and the other is white.” That’s how the New York Post introduced a profile of Lucy and Maria Aylmer, 18-year-olds whose father identifies as white and whose mother is “half-Jamaican” (and, we’re to assume, thinks of herself as black).

It’s just the most recent story of fraternal twins born with such dramatic variations in complexion they’re seen by many — and even see themselves  — as members of two different racial groups.

Each of these situations and their accompanying striking images, is a reminder of how fluid andsubjective the racial categories we’re all familiar with are.

What “black and white twins” can teach us about race: it’s not real

Lucy and Maria’s story, and all the other sensational tales in the “Black and White Twins: born a minute apart” vein are actually just overblown reports on siblings who, because of normal genetic variations that show up in more striking ways in their cases, have different complexions.

But they’re fascinating because they highlight just how flimsy and open to interpretation the racial categories we use in the US and around the world are.

Even the Post’s description of the Aylmer twins is clumsy, asserting that they’re each “biracial,” but stating in the very same sentence that one is white and the other is black.

And the fact that the two, despite having the same parents,  see themselves as belonging to two different racial groups ( “I am white and Maria is black,” Lucy told the Post) proves that there’s a lot more than biology or heritage informing racial identity.

It’s a reminder that the racial categories we use are fickle, flexible, open to interpretation, and have just as many exceptions as they do rules when it comes to their criteria for membership — that’s why they have been described as “not real,” meaning:

  • They’re not based on facts that people can even begin to agree on. (If we can’t even get a consensus that people with the same parents are the same race, where does that leave us?)
  • They’re not permanent. (If Lucy decides one day, like many other people with similar backgrounds, that her Jamaican mother is black and therefore, so is she, who’s to stop her?)
  • They’re not scientific. (There’s no blood test or medical assessment that will provide a “white” result for Lucy and a “black” one for Maria.)
  • They’re not consistent (Other twins with the same respective looks and identical parentage as these twins, might both choose to call themselves black or biracial.)

For more on this, read 11 ways race isn’t real, and watch this short video.

“Not real” doesn’t mean not important

Lucy and Maria (YouTube)

Lucy and Maria Aylmer as children     (YouTube)

Of course, none of this changes the fact that the concept of race is hugely important in our lives, in the United States, in the UK where the twins live, and around the world.

There’s no question that the way people categorize Lucy and Maria, and the way they think of themselves, will affect their lives.

That’s because, even though race is highly subjective, racism and discrimination based on what people believe about race are very real. The racial categories to which we’re assigned, based on how we look to others or how we identify, can determine real-life experiences, inspire hate, drive political outcomes, and make the difference between life and death.

But it’s still  important to remember that these consequences are a result of human-created racial categories that are based on shaky reasoning and shady motivations. This makes the borders of the various groups impossible to pin down — as the “black and white” twins demonstrate — and renders modern debates about how particular people should identify futile.  ……………..’