port of harlem magazine

February 23 - March 07, 2012


champion services travel - group travel

Expanding Age Gap Between Whites and Minorities May Increase U.S. Racial Divide

Across the country, 80 percent of senior citizens are White, while nearly 50 percent of the nation’s youth are of color. Such significant age disparities, some experts on race relations say, may be having far-reaching implications on resources invested in programs and areas benefiting younger generations.

manuel pastor“Where the old don’t see themselves reflected in the young, there’s less investment in the future,” says Manuel Pastor (pictured left), a professor of geography and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California where he directs the Program for Environmental and Regional Equity.

For instance, Pastor says states with significant age gaps between White and nonwhite populations tend to spend the least on education and public transportation.

To illustrate this point, Angela Glover Blackwel (pictured below), founder and CEO of PolicyLink, cites California and Mississippi. Through slavery and restrictive Jim Crow laws, she says, Mississippi consistently underinvested in the Black community. Today, Blackwell says, it consistently ranks on or near in the bottom in terms of education spending and has the nation’s highest infant mortality rate. Forty is the median age for Whites in Mississippi, 29 for Blacks and 25 for Latinos, according to the Pew Hispanic Center.

angela blackwellIn California, public policy priorities have changed as the White population has aged. In the 1950s, when White families arrived from the Midwest in search of jobs, California built the nation’s best educational system. There were generous investments in the state’s infrastructure and programs to help families become homeowners. The state became a poster child for the benefits of public sector spending.

Today, California has a considerable age gap between White and nonwhite residents. The median age for Whites is 43, for Blacks 34 and for Latinos 27, according to the Pew Hispanic Center. Furthermore, Blackwell says 60 percent of its over-65 population is White while children of color comprise 70 percent of the state’s 18-and-under population.

Beset with budget issues, California now hovers in the lower rungs of per-child spending on education, ranking 43rd nationally. It also ranks in the bottom quarter of all states in transportation funding, according to the Applied Research Center.

“You’re starting to see the same approach that held back states like Mississippi holding back states like California,” Blackwell says. “California is the harbinger. Mississippi should have been the lesson.”

But Pastor says such fear becomes counterproductive. “It’s not just kids of color that are hurt when you don’t invest in education,” he says. “It’s young White families that are afraid to move back to the cities because of the schools. We’re really damaging a whole generation of possibilities.”

ivan brown realty

Five-Myths-About-White-People Myth 5: White

You don’t need to see a young Black family in the White House to understand that American demographics are changing. In the 2010 census, non-Latino Whites made up 64 percent of the population, down from 69 percent in 2000, 76 percent in 1990 and 80 percent in 1980. In 2011, non-Latino Whites for the first time constituted a minority of children under age 2 — the harbinger of a nation in which Whites will be a minority. That’s no myth.

Yet, 45 of 50 governors and 96 of 100 U.S. senators were still non-Latino Whites in 2010. Whites also were 92 percent of the directors nominated for Academy Awards between 2000 and 2011. They were 96 percent of Fortune 500 chief executives in 2011. The numbers are similar for other influential positions in U.S. society. At least for now, the rhetoric about the fading role of Whites in American life outruns reality.



Venezuelan Embassy’s Black History Month Winner

corn keeper
Corn Keeper

The Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the U.S. named the winners of its first Black History Month Art Contest. The three paintings are on display this month at the Bolivarian Hall and audiences can view them at upcoming events to be held in the Venezuelan cultural space in Washington.

The first prize winner is Patricia Hickey of Fairfax, Virginia for her three-panel acrylic painting of a woman tending to crops under a bright sun entitled “Corn Keeper.” Second prize went to Howard Fleming of Washington, DC. for the painting, “Let My People Go,” which shows the faces of three Afro-descendant women on a warm background with a collage of newspaper headlines. Fleming thanked the embassy for developing initiatives to promote unity among the Afro-descendant peoples of Venezuela and the U.S.

César Vázquez of Caracas, Venezuela won third prize for his digital painting “Pórtese serio” (Act Serious), which expresses his own colorful interpretation of the theme. These two pieces will also be on display at the Bolivarian Hall during the month of February.

Black History Month is celebrated each February in the United States. Similarly, in Venezuela, the month of May has been designated the Month of Afro-descendents, and May 10th is celebrated as Afro-Venezuelan Day.

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Election 2012

 Romney 2002 vs. Romney 2012

"I think people recognize that I'm not a partisan Republican, that I'm someone who is moderate, and my views are progressive."
- Romney 2002

View Romney describes himself as a "severely conservative" governor of Massachusetts.
- Romney 2012

"Oh, not a theology based on the Bible, a different theology. But no less a theology.”

- Rick Santorum on President Obama’s belief system

"One of the mandates is they require free prenatal testing in every insurance policy in America. Why? Because it saves money in health care. Why? Because free prenatal testing ends up in more abortions and therefore less care that has to be done, because we cull the ranks of the disabled in our society."

- Rick Santorum

Where Are the Sisters?

The GOP House leadership allowed an all-male panel of religious leaders, non of whom are doctors, testify in front of a Congressional committee about birth control, which many consider to be a critical women's health issue.

Eric Benet Concert Review

After much cajoling, I agreed to join friends at Alexandria, Virginia’s Birchmere Music Hall to experience Eric Benet live. Backed by a talented five-piece band, Benet’s high energy, sold out show really brought his songs to life. Blessed to be friends who are True EBs (fans of Eric Benet), these ladies hooked me up with a great seat at their table by the stage and after the show, an introduction to Benet.

From the arrival of the band on stage, it was on and poppin’. Amidst True EBs excitedly jumping out of their seats and with cameras at the ready, Benet appeared and began with the crowd pleasing "Love Don’t Love Me" from The Best Man soundtrack. Favorite moments came when Benet sang "Chocolate Legs" followed by the uber romantic, "Spend My Life with You," a classic recording by Benet, featuring Tamia.

Benet introduced a new soloist, Nella, and informed the crowd that this was her first concert performance with him. Although she appeared nervous, she did a good job engaging the crowd and grooving with Benet on "Spend My Life with You." Another highlight came when Benet performed his latest single, "Real Love" -- his sweet falsetto gave me chills.

Handsome and fit, he looked even better up close, donning a short-sleeved white tee, black vest and slim pants. Known for giving great hugs, he placed his arm around my shoulder while pulling me close as we took a photo. We spoke about this being my first Eric Benet concert. I assured him that it would not be my last!

Benet, who released his debut record, "True to Myself," in 1996 is set to release his sixth album, The One, this spring on his own record label, Jordan House.

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Theo Hodge, Jr. M.D.

King Holiday Bill Author Dies

Former U.S. congresswoman and Gary City Clerk Katie Hall (second from left, next to Mrs. King at bill signing ceremony) died Monday morning at Methodist Hospital in downtown Gary, IN from cancer.

The first Black from Indiana elected to Congress, Mrs. Hall, 73, sponsored the 1983 law that made the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday a national holiday. Almost two decades later as city clerk, she pleaded guilty to extorting money from her staff in the clerk’s office. (For many years, Congressman John Conyers (D-Detroit) had sponsored the bill and continues to sponsor the Reparation’s Bill.)

Mainstream Blacks Step Up
Against Homophobia

 “Christie should remember that in the 18th century, it was not a referendum but a revolution that formed the United States of America. In the 19th century, it was not a referendum, but a civil war that ended slavery and unified our nation.  And in the 20th century, it was not a referendum, but a series of non-violent civil rights struggles that defeated Jim Crow and secured voting rights for women, African Americans and other disenfranchised minorities.”

- Urban League president Marc H. Morial criticized New Jersey Governor Chris Christie for his comparison of the Civil Rights and Marriage Equality Struggles and Christie's suggestion that voters decide whether to accept Marriage Equality laws.

  • Sheila Oliver, New Jersey’s first African American woman Assembly Speaker, saw Christie’s proposal to submit same-sex marriage rights to the whims of voters as a shirking of responsibility.
  • The historic NAACP’s The Crisis Magazine Winter 2012 issue presents a 4-page spread, “Visible Lives” that discusses how artists use their craft to dispel myths about the Black Gay Experience.
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Things to Do

The Rhythm Road: Jed Levy Quartet and The Earth String Band
National Geographic Society
17th and M Streets, NW
Washington, DC
The National Geographic Society provides free
underground parking for its evening and weekend events
Thu, Feb 23, 6p & 7:15p, free

philip merrillDr. Philip J. Merrill
Know History, Know Self
Blair Caldwell Library
2401 Welton Street
Denver, CO
Thu, Feb 23, 6p-8p, free

Jamal Joseph, author Panther Baby
Chicago Public Library
Harold Washington Library Center
Chicago, IL
Thu, Feb 23, 6p, free

Black History Month Family Day
Anacostia Art Gallery and Boutique
2806 Bruce Place, SE
Washington, DC
Sat, Feb 25, 11a-5p, free

32nd Anniversary African Heritage Honors Luncheon
Sat, Feb 25, 12p
Nixon’s Farm
2800 Nixon's Farm Lane
West Friendship, MD

Hi de hi de hi de ho! - Premiere
American Masters pays tribute to
pioneering jazz legend Cab Calloway
NY only: Sun, Feb 26, 8-10p on PBS
Nation: Mon, Feb 27, 10-11p on PBS
(check local listings)
After the PBS premiere, the film will stream
on American Masters

Family Pictures
A Photo Exhibition by Jonathan French
Hayti Heritage Center
804 Old Fayetteville Street
Durham, NC
Fri, Mar 2 - Sat, Mar 31

our black yearMaggie Anderson Discusses
the story of one family taking a stand in honor of our community by living off Black business for one year.
Overdue Recognition Art Gallery
6828 Racetrack Rd, Bowie, MD
Mon, Mar 5, 6p


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