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Kanye West To Urge Presidential Candidates To Focus On Education

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Saturday, August 25, 2007

kanye west

Superstar rapper Kanye West and his Kanye West Foundation has partnered with Strong America Schools and will be featured in a series of public service announcements (PSAs) urging the presidential candidates to address issues within America’s educational system.

West is the spokesman for the Ed in ’08 campaign, a $60 million dollar nonpartisan initiative supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation and ironically, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors.

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Posted in 08' Presidential Election, African American, African American Education, Announcements, Black, Black Education, Broad Foundation, Education, Education Reform, Eli Broad, Gates Foundation, Hip Hop, Kanye West, NCLB, No Child Left Behind, Politics, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

NAACP Landmark Discriminatory Lending Lawsuit

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Thursday, August 23, 2007

The NAACP filed suit in Los Angeles federal court against 14 of the country’s largest lenders, alleging systematic, institutionalized racism in sub-prime home mortgage lending. This is the first known lawsuit that challenges such lending practices on a broad scale. The suit was announced at the NAACP’s 98th annual convention, themed “Power Beyond Measure,” in Detroit through July 12.

According to the lawsuit, African American homeowners who received sub-prime mortgage loans from these lenders were more than 30 percent more likely to be issued a higher rate loan than Caucasian borrowers with the same qualifications.

“We are asking our members and all African American borrowers who bought or refinanced a home in the last five years to come forward and tell us their stories or at least re-examine their mortgages,” said NAACP National Board of Directors Chairman Julian Bond. “They can help us correct these egregious, demoralizing practices that too often turn the so-called American dream of homeownership into a nightmare.”

Other studies cited in the lawsuit demonstrate that disparities are pervasive. In fact, upper income African Americans are more than twice as likely to receive higher cost loans as their lower income white counterparts. Just this morning, USA Today reported that the National Community Reinvestment Coalition’s most recent study underscores this point, finding that discrimination against minorities persists in mortgage lending. The Federal Reserve Board, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the FDIC have all made similar observations.

“Lenders named in the suit, on average, made high cost sub-prime loans to higher qualified African Americans 54 percent of the time, compared to 23 percent of the time for Caucasians,” said NAACP Interim President & CEO Dennis Courtland Hayes.

Mortgage lenders named in the lawsuit include: Ameriquest, Fremont Investment & Loan, Option One, WMC Mortgage, Long Beach Mortgage, Citigroup, BNC Mortgage, Accredited Home Lenders, Encore Credit, Bear Sterns First Franklin Financial, HSBC Finance and Washington Mutual.

“The NAACP is bringing this suit as part of its longstanding demand that offending lenders stop discriminatory practices and bring their activities into compliance with federal law including the Fair Housing Act, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, and the Civil Rights Act,” said NAACP Interim General Counsel Angela Ciccolo.

Even when creditworthiness and other risk characteristics are accounted for, African Americans are still significantly more likely to get higher rate loans. According to the lawsuit, these statistical disparities are not mere coincidences, but instead are a result of systematic and predatory targeting of African-Americans borrowers.

“My credit record warrants a better interest rate,” said Amara Weaver of the Waukesha County NAACP in Wisconsin, whose mortgage was shifted to a sub-prime lender immediately after closing on a property in her neighborhood that had been a drug den. “As a professional if I get treated that way, I know those who are less fortunate are victimized more often. This situation lets me know I can’t expect equal treatment and that is frustrating.”

“It’s extremely frustrating,” added Michelle Allison of the NAACP’s Merced Branch in California’s Central Valley. She refinanced with a major lender and was locked into a prepayment loan and now owes $100,000 above what she initially requested. “It’s like being over a barrel. I just wanted to be treated fairly and receive the best service. I was not given options or enough information for me to make an alternate decision. I want to get back to where I was financially before I received my loan.”

NAACP branches across the nation are addressing the predatory lending issue. In Michigan, the Detroit branch’s executive director Heaster Wheeler chairs the state’s Predatory Lending Task Force. He and others have met with Gov. Jennifer Granholm who has instructed the state insurance and banking commissioner as well the state’s civil rights office to coordinate with the branch to craft further legislation and use their authority more strictly to enforce current laws. The Washington, D.C. Branch has partnered with the American Association of Retired Persons. Through workshops, seminars, church meetings and other gatherings it has been discovered that the typical predatory lending victim in that city is an elderly African American female who is single and on social security. They are encouraged to refinance for home improvements and other reasons. The NAACP’s Connecticut State Conference has a committee to address predatory lending issues and has been actively engaged in assisting individuals in their cases. They are also encouraging legislative action and are conducting community education initiatives.

In addition to the NAACP’s Legal Department, the organization and the proposed class of its members are represented by Feazell & Tighe LLP of Austin and Kabatek Brown Kellner LLP of Los Angeles and the law office of Gary L. Bledsoe.

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

Posted in African American, Announcements, Civil Rights, Financial, Law, Mortgage, NAACP, Predatory Lending, Race, Racism, Real Estate | Leave a Comment »

National Black Law Students Reject Supreme Court School Case Rationale on Race Plans

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Thursday, August 23, 2007

June 30, 2007

For Immediate Release:

(WASHINGTON, DC June 28, 2007) — In an unfortunate 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down the race conscious integration plans of Seattle and Louisville public schools, deeming them unconstitutional. While studies have consistently shown the benefits of racially diverse classrooms in all stages of education, the Supreme Court’s ruling seems counterintuitive considering this nation’s history as well as the growing racial and ethnic composition of our country.

The Supreme Court found the race conscious plans of Seattle and Louisville unconstitutional because they were not narrowly tailored to take race into account to the minimum extent necessary. In both of these school districts, race was used as a tiebreaker in determining which school a student will attend in order to achieve a diverse student population. As we stand here in front of the Supreme Court today, this case reflects a period where the Supreme Court is intellectually dishonest concerning the problems of race in America.

This decision’s message is similar to Plessy v. Ferguson; embarrassing our nation and tacitly ignoring issues of racial injustice in facilities. It is imperative for our generation to mobilize on these issues as we have the unique challenge to discern a less overt and elusive form of Jim Crow’s legacy, said Eddie L. Koen Jr., National Chair of the National Black Law Students Association. With the ongoing attempts by the American Bar Association to modify accreditation evaluations for law schools, in addition to the composition of the Court, we are in danger of witnessing a disparate impact for the enrollment of not only black law students, but K-12 schools all over the country.

The two school districts, Chief Justice Roberts wrote, have failed to provide the necessary support for the proposition that there is no other way than individual racial classifications to avoid racial isolation in their school districts.” Moreover, the way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discrimination on the basis of race . . . The reasoning applied by the Chief Justice that ignoring race will rectify the issues of unequal access to educational institutions was a unjustifiable deviance from both statistical data on school integration and Supreme Court jurisprudence going back to Brown v. Board of Education. The court ignores issues of de facto segregation and assumes color-blind policies will act as an invisible hand to magically fix the ills of our nation’s history.

Race conscious integration plans have been essential in preventing racial isolation in school districts and providing equal access to educational institutions. Justice Breyer noted in his dissenting opinion that between 1968 and 1980, the number of black children attending a school where minority children constituted more than half the children fell from 77% to 63% (81% to 57% in the south). However, this positive trend has slowly reversed since 2000. Since 2000 the figure has risen from 63% back to 77% (57% to 69% in the south). In light of these figures, the Supreme Court insists on a ruling that will only intensify the problems of racial isolation and equal access to educational institutions.

The Supreme Court’s willingness to find the Seattle and Louisville race conscious integration plans unconstitutional conflicts with decades of equal protection jurisprudence dating back to Brown v. Board of Education. In Brown, the court began remedying minorities lack of an equal opportunity to pursue an education. The decision made by the court to further restrict race conscious integration plans not only inhibits the ability of school districts to provide minorities access to equal educational institutions, it exacerbates the problems of segregation that have unjustifiably inhibited the progression of minorities in American society.

We have witnessed times in the past where the high court has rendered a bad decision. We witnessed Plessy v. Ferguson, where the court’s separate but equal doctrine provided an impetus to further segregation laws. Today, we whole-heartedly agree with Justice Breyer’s dissent, which states in part that, this is a decision that the Court and the Nation will come to regret.

The National Black Law Students Association recognizes the severity of this case and will work to determine the full ramifications of the Supreme Court’s decision. The National Black Law Student Association will continue to serve as advocates for the right of minorities to have equal access to education.

Founded in 1968, the National Black Law Students Association (NBLSA) is a nationwide organization formed to articulate and promote the needs and goals of black law students and effectuates change in the legal community. As the largest student run organization in the country with over 6,000 members, NBLSA includes chapters or affiliates in six different countries including The Bahamas, Nigeria, and South Africa. NBLSA encourages the development of talented, social conscious lawyers of tomorrow.

For more information, Contact Levi Christian Pearson at communications@nblsa.org

Posted in African American, African American Education, African American Lawyers, Announcements, Black, Black Education, Black Lawyers, Brown v. Board of Education, Civil Rights, Education, Education Reform, Law, Public Education, Race, Supreme Court, Urban Education | Leave a Comment »

Three Free Real Estate Workshops

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Tuesday, August 21, 2007

 
 

Three Free Real Estate Workshops

by Paul Lewis

Friday, August 24, 2007 – 1:00 PM and 6:30 PM – Dallas

Crowne Plaza Hotel – Dallas

7050 Stemmons Freeway

I-35 & Mockingbird Lane

Dallas, TX 75247

Saturday, August 25, 2007 – 1:00 PM – Arlington

Hilton Arlington

2401 East Lamar Blvd.

Arlington, TX 76006

Paul New Pic

 

Spend the weekend with Paul E. Lewis, who is fast becoming one of the country’s top real estate investment training guru’s.

 

Paul will challenge you, expand your thinking, open your eyes to opportunities that you never knew existed, and encourage you to dream the impossible dreams.

If you’re tired of living from paycheck to paycheck, and would like to know how ordinary everyday people are getting rich investing in real estate, then you need to be attendance at Paul’s Free Real Estate Workshops.

Be Like Mike: Michael Pleasant, one of Paul’s students made over $26,000 on his very first real estate deal! Paul’s got a copy of Mikes check, ask him to show it to you!

Come on out to learn the nuts and bolts secrets to buying and selling real estate that most people don’t want you to know!


Paul Lewis
Real Estate Investors Training Center

Posted in African American, African American Business, African American Investors, African American Wealth, Announcements, Black, Black Business, Black Investors, Black Wealth, Paul Lewis, Real Estate, Real Estate Investment Training Center, REITC | Leave a Comment »

Unique Exploration Of Racism, Reparation And Healing – Repairing the Quilt of Humanity

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Tuesday, August 21, 2007

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 21, 2007
CONTACT:
Deborah Howard
Guiding Change Consulting
718-857-6830
debhoward@guidingchange.org


UNIQUE EXPLORATION OF RACISM, REPARATION AND HEALING


Bookcover

Author – Deborah Howard

Brooklyn, NY (BlackNews.com) – Transformative Change Facilitator Deborah Howard has written Repairing the Quilt of Humanity: A Metaphor for Healing and Reparation, a book with a unique perspective on racism, its damaging impact on both people of color and white people, and what needs to happen for healing to begin.

“A rare account of one white woman’s journey to understanding some of the issues that perpetuate racism in America. Deborah Howard’s unique perspective provides critical insight into racism’s complexities — a MUST read,” said Frederick A. Miller, CEO of The Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group, Inc. and co-author of The Inclusion Breakthrough and managing editor of The Promise of Diversity.

Using the metaphor of a quilt and the Jewish concept of tikkun olam, – healing and repairing the world – Ms. Howard provides us with insight and an innovative approach to understanding and making visible sources of systemic injustice, the way social inequities are perpetuated, the significant psychological damage that results, and the transformation necessary for healing and forgiveness.

For a review copy of the book or to set up speaking engagements, contact:

Deborah Howard
Guiding Change Consulting
718-857-6830
debhoward@guidingchange.org
www.guidingchange.org

Available on Amazon (type in Repairing the Quilt) or on order from bookstores
Paperback: 100 pages
$10.95
Beckham Publications Group (July 1, 2006)
Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5 x 0.3 inches
ISBN 0931761123


About the Author
Deborah Howard, Esq., M.S.O.D., founder of Guiding Change Consulting is a transformative change facilitator and life-long learner whose life purpose is to enable positive transformative change in others and continue her own learning and growth in the process. She is dedicated to helping individuals, teams, and organizations maximize their potential, enhance their effectiveness, and create and maintain work environments that are inclusive and just.

Her professional life began in the field of law. After receiving her Bachelor of Arts Degree from Harvard University, she went on to receive a law degree from Northeastern University School of Law. She went to law school with the goal of using the law to help create positive social change. After litigating in the public services area for a number of years both in Anchorage, Alaska and New York City, she became disillusioned with the adversarial process. Rather than taking sides in win-lose scenarios, she wanted to find ways to work with people to help them build and maintain connections. It was that desire that led her to return to school to receive her Masters Degree in Organization Development from American University/NTL.

Deborah’s background and training also includes a Certificate in Culturally Competent Human Services from the Temple University Multicultural Research and Training Institute as well as coursework in human interaction and diversity at the NTL Institute for Applied Behavioral Science of which she is a member.


-END-

Posted in African American, Announcements, Authors, Black, Civil Rights, New Books, Race, Racism, Reparation | Leave a Comment »

NABSW-DALLAS CHAPTER

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Tuesday, August 14, 2007

MEETING ANNOUNCEMENT

The monthly business meeting of National Association of Black Social Workers – Dallas Chapter will be held on Thursday, August 16, 2007 from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. at the Urban League of Greater Dallas, 4315 South Lancaster Rd. Dallas , Texas 75216, (214) 915-4610.

Posted in Announcements, NABSW, Urban League of Greater Dallas | Leave a Comment »

DAN RATHER REPORTS’ to Present Conclusive Evidence of Touch-Screen Voting Machine Failures

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Hour-Long Special This Tuesday Night to Expose Startling New Information, Including Filipino Sweatshops Where Faulty ES&S Systems Are Produced

VIDEO PREVIEW: Workers Paid Less Than $2.50 Per Day, Quality Control Consists of ‘Shaking the Machine to Check for Loose Screws’…

DALLAS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–HDNet:What: This Tuesday, DAN RATHER REPORTS presents conclusive evidence of the failure of touch screen voting machines across the country. The episode, “The Trouble with Touch Screens,” is an entire hour devoted to new information on this story. From scientists involved in testing the equipment to manufacturers in third-world countries who shipped these defective voting machines to the United States, DAN RATHER REPORTS will present new information showing that these defective machines may have altered the outcome of multiple elections.

When: Dan Rather Reports “The Trouble with Touch Screens” will air Tuesday, August 14 at 8:00 p.m. ET. The program also airs at 11:00 p.m. ET to accommodate west coast prime time.

This is on HD Net so not everyone is going to be able to see it live but there will surely be copies on-line a day or two after the episode airs, if not sooner.

In the startling preview clip (posted below) notice that the only test performed on the ES&S iVotronic Direct Recording Electronic (DRE) touch-screen voting machines by the people who manufacture the machines in the Philippines is a “shake test” to ensure there were no loose pieces left in the machines. These people who make $2.10 to $2.50 a day and work in what amounts to a sweat shop where cats, rats, and snakes were removed from the basement by the truckload.

And the American who was dispatched to deal with problems at the factory back in 2001 admits that the touch-screens failed and “bubbled” as far back as then. But what has been done about it since?

The machines made by ES&S may not have any screws loose, but the folks who think this is any way to run a democracy certainly do!

Posted in Announcements, Dan Rather Reports, Democracy, Elections, HD Net, Media, Politics, PoliTricks, Voting Machines | Leave a Comment »

The Pan-African Connection Bookstore and Resource Center Celebrates the Birthday of Marcus Garvey and 18 years of Service to the Dallas Community

Posted by DallasBlackBlog on Sunday, August 12, 2007

On Saturday August 18, at 5 p.m., the Pan-African Connection Bookstore and Resource Center, located at 612 E. Jefferson Blvd., will celebrate 18 years of service and the birthday of the Honorable Marcus Garvey, leader of the largest mass movement of in the history of African people.

“We thank the people for supporting us and allowing us to do what we love. Using African culture and art to teach young and old the dignity and humanity of Africa and African people, “ says Akwete Tyehimba bookstore co-owner.

We will pay tribute to one of our greatest organizers in our history, Marcus Garvey. Proclaiming a “ Back to Africa”, self-determination, and self-pride message Garvey organized over a million African people in the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), with branches throughout America, Canada, the Caribbean and Africa.

This year’s activities will focus on Garvey’s message of ‘Mass Organization’ and organizing everyone around the issue of ‘Free National Healthcare in America’.

Beginning at 5 p.m., invited guests organizing for ‘Free National Healthcare’ include: Jobs With Justice, Nurses Organizing Committee, Project Healthcare Organization, Union organizers, The All-African People’s Revolutionary Party and a Medical student enrolled in the Latin American Medical School in Cuba.

“Creating ‘Free National Healthcare’ in America is a call to action for everyone,” says Bandele Tyehimba, bookstore owner. “ It is also the beginning of the storm for a new humanity”, he continues.

Beginning at 7p.m., Civil Rights activist and grassroots organizer Mukasa Dada (Willie Ricks) will speak on theme: ‘ Today There is Only One Road to Effective Acton: The Organization of the Masses: Bro. Mukasa won the support of thousands of poor working class African People worldwide when he chanted, “Black Power, Black Power” during a 1966 march across Mississippi, with the late Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) and other organizers of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).

Cultural entertainment will be provided by the, Young Pioneers Institute (YPI), and Singer, Storyteller (Afi) Melody Bell.

All activities are free and open to the public. Children’s activities will be provided during the programs.

For more information contact

Bandele Tyehimba at 214-943-8262.

Posted in African American, Announcements, Black, Civil Rights, Race | Leave a Comment »