Click the image below to hear what Dr. Boyce Watkins has to say about the new credit card legislation signed by President Barack Obama:
Click the image below to hear what Dr. Boyce Watkins has to say about the new credit card legislation signed by President Barack Obama:
Life was looking good for Omar Edwards up to the point of encountering a man rummaging through his vehicle in Manhattan's East Harlem neighborhood on the night of May 28.
A month prior the 25-year-old police rookie had married the mother of his children, 1 1/2-year-old Xavier and 7-month-old Keanua. Wearing street clothes, he had just gotten off work at a job he had wanted to do since he was a child. Perhaps it seemed like things couldn't get any better. In truth, they never would.
He was in street clothes as he walked toward his car parked about a block away on Second Ave. between E. 124th and E. 125th St., where he saw Miguel Goitia rummaging through the vehicle. The driver's side window was busted out.SOURCE: NY Daily News.
Edwards grabbed Goitia, who managed to slip out of his sweater and escape Edwards' grip, Kelly said.
Gun drawn, Edwards gave chase.
At the same time, three plainclothes officers in an unmarked car saw Edwards running down the street. The car made a U-turn, and one of the officers, a white cop with more than four years on the job, got out and fired six shots - hitting Edwards twice, once in the left arm and once in the chest, [New York Police Department Commissioner Raymond] Kelly said.
Edwards did not fire his weapon.
As he lay handcuffed on the ground, cops cut off his shirt to reveal a Police Academy T-shirt and found NYPD shield No. 12734 in his pants pocket.
The death of Exodus Tyson, daughter of former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, brings immediate tears to the eyes. As a single father of three daughters, my heart becomes heavy at the thought of losing any of my precious little girls. I also fear what might happen if I were to suddenly pass on myself. While the pain of death is severe and complicated, there is always a lesson to be learned from the experiences of others.
In this case, there is the serious and gut-wrenching task of planning for the possibility that you may have to bury your child. In the black community, such issues are compounded by the alarming death rates of black teens in the inner city, higher infant mortality rates and reduced access to health care for African Americans. In light of our unique experiences and circumstances, we must be careful and intelligent in our financial planning.
How do you plan for your child's death? Is life insurance even necessary? Let's break it down and figure it out together.
Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court, Sonia Sotomayor, is catching heat for seeming to imply that judges are supposed to make the law. Click the image to listen to her words.
The frantic search for Bonnie Sweeten and her 9-year-old daughter - which began after she called 911 Tuesday to report that they had been kidnapped in Bucks County - ended yesterday at Walt Disney World.
Sweeten, 38, and daughter Julia Rakoczy were taken into custody at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa about 8:40 p.m., the FBI said. Sweeten was being held by authorities in Orange County, Fla., and her daughter was safe.
Sweeten will be extradited to Bucks County, where she faces charges of making a false report and identity theft, both misdemeanors. The investigation is continuing into possible theft charges, said Bucks County District Attorney Michelle Henry.
Julia Rakoczy's biological father, Anthony Rakoczy, of Feasterville, will go to Florida today to pick her up, Henry said.
Over the last week, Sweeten withdrew $12,000 from several bank accounts and used a coworker's driver's license to travel, Henry said.
A reverse discrimination lawsuit filed by a group of Connecticut firefighters is shaping up to be the most contentious case in whichSonia Sotomayor participated, one sure to provoke sharp questioning when the Senate begins consideration of her nomination to theSupreme Court.
In 2008, Sotomayor was one of three judges on a panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit who upheld a trial court's ruling rejecting the reverse discrimination claims by 19 white firefighters, one of whom was also Hispanic. The plaintiffs claimed that the city of New Haven violated their rights by throwing out the results of an officers' promotion exam in which minority candidates received disproportionately low scores.
The substance of that 2008 ruling, which the Supreme Court is now considering, is proving less problematic than the manner in which Sotomayor and the other two judges on her panel handled the case.
At first, they issued only a brief, unsigned summary order noting the trial court's "thorough, thoughtful, and well-reasoned opinion" rather than offering a full opinion of their own. Four months later, as the full circuit court was about to issue a ruling on whether to take up the case, they withdrew the unpublished order and issued an equally brief unsigned opinion.
Business advocates started scrambling on Tuesday to figure out whether Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor would be good or bad for companies.
But one thing was clear: If confirmed, she will be able to make her mark on business issues quickly, because a handful of key cases are already on the docket.
Companies and legal experts are scouring Sotomayor's past opinions to glean clues about how she could rule on business issues.
The Supreme Court has already agreed to consider several high-profile cases in the new term, which starts Oct. 5.
"The stakes are incredibly high with respect to business issues," said Elizabeth Nowicki, an associate professor who teaches business law at Tulane University in New Orleans.
Among the issues are questions about corporate governance and securities fraud, Nowicki said.
In fact, the high court added a new one to the roster on Tuesday. The justices agreed to consider a case involving Merck & Co. (MRK, Fortune 500) that addresses how long investors can wait before making a securities fraud claim.
Between 60 and 80 percent of athletic departments' revenue in Division IA of the National Collegiate Athletic Association comes from "activities that can be described as commercial," according to a studyissued Tuesday by the Congressional Budget Office.
While athletic officials have long tried to describe their activities as fundamentally similar to the rest of their institutions, the Congressional report suggests otherwise. It finds that the proportion of commercial revenue is seven to eight times that for the rest of the institutions' activities. As a result, athletics programs may have "crossed the line from educational to commercial endeavors," the Congressional review found. (Outside of the NCAA's top division, it found significant, but much reduced commercial revenue -- 20 to 30 percent in the rest of Division I).
"Removing the major tax preferences currently available to university athletic departments would be unlikely to significantly alter the nature of those programs or garner much tax revenue even if the sports programs were classified, for tax purposes, as engaging in unrelated commercial activity," the report says. "As long as athletic departments remained a part of the larger nonprofit or public university, schools would have considerable opportunity to shift revenue, costs, or both between their taxed and untaxed sectors, rendering efforts to tax that unrelated income largely ineffective. Changing the tax treatment of income from certain sources, such as corporate sponsorships or royalties from sales of branded merchandise, would be more likely to affect only the most commercial teams; it would also create less opportunity for shifting revenue or costs."
By Dr. Christopher J. Metzler
A recent New York Times/CBS poll concluded that race relations are improving in the wake of the election of President Obama. According to the survey, about 66 percent of Americans said that race relations are generally good compared with 53 percent in July of last year. Fifty-nine percent of African-Americans – along with 65 percent of whites – now characterize the relationship between Blacks and Whites in America as ‘good,’ The New York Times proclaimed with glee, “Barack Obama’s presidency seems to be altering the public perception of race relations in the United States.” The Huffington Post also chimed in claiming that “Obama’s race relations effect is real.”
It seems that the single event of the election of President Obama has erased America’s racial transgressions in one fell swoop and has improved the relationship between Blacks and Whites overnight. The problem, however, is not relations between Blacks and Whites; there is no evidence yet that the election of President Obama has had more than a symbolic (but important) effect on America’s still unresolved and conflicted relationship with race.
Obama’s election has not changed the fact that in this economic downturn, Black unemployment is at approximately 15 percent while White unemployment is at approximately eight percent. Since his election, racial profiling has not stopped, the educational achievement gap between Blacks and Whites has not narrowed. In addition, the President did not attend, nor did he send a delegation to the World Racism conference in Geneva. Thus, it can be argued that Obama’s election has had nothing but a symbolic effect on race. The difficulty with this argument is that it suffers from the same flaw in logic that is inherent in the New York Times/CBS News poll.
First, the question in the poll was about race relations. That is, the interpersonal relationship between Blacks and Whites. But, the issue is not race relations, it is whether the President will use his bully pulpit to eradicate the substantive racial inequalities that afflict Blacks in America. Much like he will use it to bring peace to the Middle East.
Click to read more on our Black Scholars Blog.
Joshua Brandon Norris is expected to graduate soon and become a Morehouse Man, with all its prestige. At 22, he’s had a good run during his time at Morehouse College. He drove a Hummer, co-owned a fashion store at Perimeter Mall and owns a stylish $450,000 townhouse.
He also shot another student.
Across the country, Frank Rashad Johnson, the victim, attends Sacramento City College and lives with his mother, trying to save money. He, too, wanted to be a Morehouse Man.
“My great-uncle was a classmate of Martin Luther King’s,” Johnson said. “It has a long history of exemplary students and good men. It was my dream school.”
But all that fell apart when he was shot three times outside a school-related Halloween party near Atlantic Station in 2007. Police reports say Norris was kicked out of a nightclub, had words with Johnson after bumping into him outside, then shot the fellow Morehouse student during a struggle in the street.
Completing a Morehouse degree is vital to Norris. Fulton County Judge Marvin Arrington ordered him to do so after he pleaded no contest to a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The deal calls for six years of probation and comes with first-offender status —- meaning Norris’ record will be wiped clean if he stays out of trouble.
“You’re getting the break of your life,” Arrington said during the Jan. 27 hearing.
The arrangement constitutes a bizarre twist of fate for Johnson.
Electronic Arts Inc. and the National Collegiate Athletic Association were sued by a former college football player who claims athletes’ images are used in video games without their permission and in violation of NCAA rules.
Electronic Arts, the second-largest video-game publisher, circumvents the rules by allowing customers to upload player names directly into games and creating images that closely resemble student athletes to increase sales and NCCA royalties, according to the complaint filed by Sam Keller, a former quarterback for Arizona State University.
The practice is sanctioned by the NCAA and a licensing company for the association, Keller said in his complaint filed yesterday in federal court in Oakland, California. Keller seeks to represent all NCCA football and basketball players featured in Electronic Arts’ NCAA video games.
“Electronic Arts is not permitted to use player names and likeness,” Keller said. Yet the company “with the knowledge, participation and approval of the NCAA and Collegiate Licensing Co. extensively utilizes actual player names and likeness.”
A Kenyan man has sued activists who called on women to boycott sex to protest the growing divide in the nation's coalition government.
James Kimondo said the seven-day sex ban, which ended this week, resulted in stress, mental anguish, backaches and lack of sleep, his lawyer told the state-run Kenya Broadcasting Corp.
The lawsuit filed Friday claims lack of conjugal rights affected Kimondo's marriage and seeks undisclosed damages from the G-10, an umbrella group for women's activists, KBC said.
The women's caucus caused a national debate when it urged women to withhold sex to protest increasingly frosty relations between President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
Citizens of the east African nation are frustrated by a shaky coalition government, which was formed after post-election violence killed more than 1,000 people in 2008. The wrangling between Kibaki and Odinga has sparked fears of more violence.
Gender activists say they are not worried about the lawsuit.
Dr. Christopher Metzler
2009 seems to be the year that the American electorate is turning left of center.
Evidence of this include the election of President Obama, the election of a Democratic controlled Congress, the Supreme Court of Iowa sanctioned same sex marriage, Vermont allows same sex marriage and several other states are soon to follow. Is this left of center shift better for the country than the right of center shift? To be sure, the shift is attributed to the disappearance of the liberal wing of the Republican Party and the disappearance of the conservative wing of the Democratic Party. Is there a need to balance this shift?
Noticeably absent from the left of center direction is the Supreme Court of the United States. On the issue of race, the Roberts Court seem poised to adopt the legal and amorphous fiction of a "color blind" America. For example, on school desegregation the Court limited the ability of school boards to implement voluntary school desegregation plans, raised significant legal and procedural hurdles for plaintiffs bringing discrimination law suits. On the Court's docket are three cases with racial implications Ricci (Affirmative Action), Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One v. Mukasey (Voting Rights), and Padilla v. Kentucky (Immigration and the right to counsel).
Addressing the right of center approach to jurisprudence, the first bill signed by President Obama was the Lily Ledbetter Act which sought to correct the doctrinal and ideological shift of the Roberts Court on pay discrimination in particular. The new law amends Title VII, by providing, "unlawful employment practice occurs, with respect to discrimination in compensation in violation of this title, when a discriminatory compensation decision or other practice is adopted, when an individual becomes subject to a discriminatory compensation decision or other practice, or when an individual is affected by application of a discriminatory compensation decision or other practice, including each time wages, benefits, or other compensation is paid, resulting in whole or in part from such a decision or other practice."
The Ledbetter Act is a clear rebuke of the right leaning ideological shift of the court. Of course, a President cannot govern by gaining the political muscle to overturn decisions of the United States Supreme Court. Thus, he uses his appointments to the ostensibly independent judiciary to further his political agenda. Obama will not be the first President to do so. In fact, the right of center ideological shift is due to both Presidents Bush.
Despite the claim that Presidents appoint Supreme Court justices based on Qualifications and not on ideology, the ideological and political tilt of the Roberts Court and courts before it reflects the ideology of the appointing President (with the exception of Justice Souter). So fittingly, with Justice Souter resigning and President Obama set to name his replacement, what factors will the President consider?
As a candidate for President, Obama said, "I will seek somebody with a sharp and independent mind, and a record of excellence and integrity," he said. "I will seek someone who understands that justice isn't about some abstract legal theory or footnote in a case book, it is also about how our laws affect the daily realities of people's lives, whether they can make a living, and care for their families, whether they feel safe in their homes, and welcome in their own nation. I view that quality of empathy, of understanding and identifying with peoples hopes and struggles as an essential ingredient for arriving at just decisions and outcomes."
Thus, by his own admission the President seems poised to select someone who is left of center and thus solidify the ideological left of center and right of center divide that infects the judiciary. To be sure, his appointment will not change the constitution of the court since Souter is left of center. This however, is not the question. The question is where a President promises "change that we can believe in", does that change include not changing the ideological shift of the Supreme Court of the United States? If it does, were Americans voting for change in the politics of ideology or were Americans voting for change in party? If Americans were voting for a change in party and not ideology, then the President would have a difficult time appointing a white man or one who many in the left of center bloc would argue "thinks like a white man" to the Supreme Court of the United States. Just like race was a factor in the Bush 41 decision to appoint Justice Thomas to the Court, so too will race, gender, and age be a factor in Obama's decision. A major consideration for the President is going to be appointing a young judge who can shape the ideological intestines of the Court interminably.
Also by him own ingress, the President will select someone who understands the reality of everyday Americans. This unshrouds the President's view of altering the landscape of the Court by appointing justices now and in the course of his Presidency who are unlike the current Supreme Court where all of the Justices have come from the Federal Courts of Appeal. The model of course will not be aboriginal. The Court that decided Brown v. Board,(the law declaring separate is unequal) Gideon v. Wainright (the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution required that indigent non- capital criminal defendants be provided with counsel), Miranda v. Arizona (Miranda rights), and Loving V. Virginia (which allowed inter-racial marriage) was comprised of those who "combined empathy and understanding" in its judicial decisions.
Of course, it is not the kind of "empathy and understanding that the Roberts Court have shown on the issue of race. It has chosen, instead to employ the juridical framework of formal equality and the aspirational, controversial rhetorical of a "color-blind America." Let's be clear. The nomination of a Supreme Court justice is among the single most political decision that a President will make. Thus, advocacy groups on all sides of the issue will pressure the President to alter the judicial landscape in their favor.
Responding to the vitriolic attack on Senator Leahy by advocacy groups who supported current Chief Justice Robert's confirmation, then Senator Obama said, "These groups on the right and left should not resort to the sort of broad-brush dogmatic attacks that have hampered the process in the past and constrained each and every senator in this chamber from making sure that they are voting on the basis of their conscience." But, elections matter and the question is how will the President's conscience blend with the politics of race, age and gender as well as ideology?
Dr. Christopher J. Metzler is associate dean at Georgetown University and the author of The Construction and Rearticulation of Race in a Post-Racial America.
After more than two decades of disproportionately harsh federal crack cocaine sentences, it seems the political stars finally may be aligned to correct this glaring disparity in the nation's sentencing laws. We hope Congress will move expeditiously on the matter.
Last week, a senior Justice Department official urged lawmakers to reduce mandatory minimum sentences for sale and and possession of crack cocaine to mirror those for powder cocaine.
Back in the 1980s, when crack cocaine was a scary new drug, concerned lawmakers passed harsh mandatory minimum penalties for crack.
The sentences were far more stringent than those for powder cocaine, which is the same drug in a different form.