1. 15:33 23rd Apr 2014

    Notes: 1642

    Reblogged from dendroica

    image: Download

    ethiopienne:

Sonia Sotomayor delivers blistering dissent against affirmative action ban

The Supreme Court upheld Michigan’s ban on affirmative action Tuesday, but not without a blistering dissent from Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
Sotomayor said the decision infringed upon groups’ rights by allowing Michigan voters to change “the basic rules of the political process … in a manner that uniquely disadvantaged racial minorities.”
"In my colleagues’ view, examining the racial impact of legislation only perpetuates racial discrimination," Sotomayor added. “This refusal to accept the stark reality that race matters is regrettable. As members of the judiciary tasked with intervening to carry out the guarantee of equal protection, we ought not sit back and wish away, rather than confront, the racial inequality that exists in our society.”
The court’s 6-2 decision upheld a voter-approved change to the Michigan state Constitution that prevents public colleges from using race as a factor in its admissions. As the AP noted, the ruling provides a boost for other education-related affirmative action bans in California and Washington state.
ABC News pointed out that Sotomayor has been open about the role affirmative action has played in her personal life. In her memoir “My Beloved World,” Sotomayor wrote that it “opened doors” for her.
"But one thing has not changed: to doubt the worth of minority students’ achievement when they succeed is really only to present another face of the prejudice that would deny them a chance even to try," she wrote.
Read Sotomayor’s full dissent here.

    ethiopienne:

    Sonia Sotomayor delivers blistering dissent against affirmative action ban

    The Supreme Court upheld Michigan’s ban on affirmative action Tuesday, but not without a blistering dissent from Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

    Sotomayor said the decision infringed upon groups’ rights by allowing Michigan voters to change “the basic rules of the political process … in a manner that uniquely disadvantaged racial minorities.”

    "In my colleagues’ view, examining the racial impact of legislation only perpetuates racial discrimination," Sotomayor added. “This refusal to accept the stark reality that race matters is regrettable. As members of the judiciary tasked with intervening to carry out the guarantee of equal protection, we ought not sit back and wish away, rather than confront, the racial inequality that exists in our society.”

    The court’s 6-2 decision upheld a voter-approved change to the Michigan state Constitution that prevents public colleges from using race as a factor in its admissions. As the AP noted, the ruling provides a boost for other education-related affirmative action bans in California and Washington state.

    ABC News pointed out that Sotomayor has been open about the role affirmative action has played in her personal life. In her memoir “My Beloved World,” Sotomayor wrote that it “opened doors” for her.

    "But one thing has not changed: to doubt the worth of minority students’ achievement when they succeed is really only to present another face of the prejudice that would deny them a chance even to try," she wrote.

    Read Sotomayor’s full dissent here.

     
  2. 09:43

    Notes: 325

    Reblogged from npr

    cartermagazine:

Today In History
‘Granville T. Woods, inventor of over 50 products, was born in Columbus, OH, on this date April 23, 1856. The steam-boiler furnace, the telegraph system for trains, and automatic air brakes were some of his inventions.’
(picture: Granville T. Woods)
- CARTER Magazine

    cartermagazine:

    Today In History

    ‘Granville T. Woods, inventor of over 50 products, was born in Columbus, OH, on this date April 23, 1856. The steam-boiler furnace, the telegraph system for trains, and automatic air brakes were some of his inventions.’

    (picture: Granville T. Woods)

    - CARTER Magazine

     
  3. 14:06 22nd Apr 2014

    Notes: 299

    Reblogged from theatlantic

    image: Download

    theatlantic:

Your Friendly Neighborhood Drug Dealer

As “Carlo” walks around New York City, his gentle manner, warm smile, and crisp button-down shirts do nothing to betray that he has some $10,000 in illegal drugs stashed in his pockets.
In his 30s and from the Upper West Side, Carlo is a high-end dealer in some of New York’s purest narcotics. His current best seller is the chemical compound MDMA, popularly known as Molly. Each of the capsules he sells at $20 a pop gives a customer a four-hour euphoric high. On any given weekend, Carlo’s product is consumed by hundreds of New Yorkers. He clearly takes pride in his role sparking dance-floor romances across the city. One of his frequent clients calls him a “chemical cupid” and says Carlos’s MDMA is the most potent she’s ever experienced. With good-quality MDMA fast becoming one of the most sought-after drugs, Carlo has a prime spot in a very popular distribution pyramid.
During the evenings I spent accompanying Carlo on his rounds, I learned that his customer base included people of all walks of life. Within one four-hour period, I saw Carlo cater to NYU students, lawyers, artists, bankers, and a college professor—all ordering drugs to their apartments as casually as if it were Chinese food.
Read more. [Image: DEA/Reuters]

    theatlantic:

    Your Friendly Neighborhood Drug Dealer

    As “Carlo” walks around New York City, his gentle manner, warm smile, and crisp button-down shirts do nothing to betray that he has some $10,000 in illegal drugs stashed in his pockets.

    In his 30s and from the Upper West Side, Carlo is a high-end dealer in some of New York’s purest narcotics. His current best seller is the chemical compound MDMA, popularly known as Molly. Each of the capsules he sells at $20 a pop gives a customer a four-hour euphoric high. On any given weekend, Carlo’s product is consumed by hundreds of New Yorkers. He clearly takes pride in his role sparking dance-floor romances across the city. One of his frequent clients calls him a “chemical cupid” and says Carlos’s MDMA is the most potent she’s ever experienced. With good-quality MDMA fast becoming one of the most sought-after drugs, Carlo has a prime spot in a very popular distribution pyramid.

    During the evenings I spent accompanying Carlo on his rounds, I learned that his customer base included people of all walks of life. Within one four-hour period, I saw Carlo cater to NYU students, lawyers, artists, bankers, and a college professor—all ordering drugs to their apartments as casually as if it were Chinese food.

    Read more. [Image: DEA/Reuters]

     
  4. dglsplsblg:

    You’re reading this article. Should it change your opinion of the piece’s quality to know that its author was white, black, or of another race? No, if you’re evaluating it on its merits.

    Yet a new study by the consultancy firm Nextions shows that reviewers of a legal brief did just that.

    The idea

    In an experimental context, when reviewers were told the author of a legal brief was black they consistently rated identical pieces lower in quality and identified more spelling, grammar, factual, or analytical errors. It’s evidence that, even if the days of overt bigotry and explicit discrimination are mostly past, the United States still struggles with a deep problem of implicit racism.

    Arin N. Revees, the president of Nextions and the author of the study, argues that the implicit racism happened because reviewers take the racial information she provided as a cue for how they should judge the work. When the author is supposed to be white, reviewers excused errors as out of haste or inexperience. They commented that the author “has potential” and was “generally a good writer but needs to work on” some skills. When the author is supposed to be black, those same errors became evidence of incompetence. A reviewer said he “can’t believe he [the author] went to NYU,” and others said he “needs lots of work” and was “average at best.”

    i’m going to just leave this right here for all the “racism is in the past,” “it’s all in black people’s heads” and “black people love playing the victim” folks. 

    Worse than “sad” this is just - for lack of a better way to express it (because I’m, you know, black), just triflin’. It’s as if the last 50+ years didn’t even happen.

     
  5. 09:52

    Notes: 13400

    Reblogged from odinsblog

    I’ve never been female. But I have been black my whole life. I can perhaps offer some insight from that perspective. There are many similar social issues related to access to equal opportunity that we find in the black community, as well as the community of women in a white male dominate society…

    When I look at — throughout my life — I’ve known that I wanted to do astrophysics since I was 9 years old…I got to see how the world around me reacted to my expressions of these ambitions. All I can say is, the fact that I wanted to be a scientist, an astrophysicist was hands down the path of most resistance through the forces of society.

    Anytime I expressed this interest, teachers would say, ‘Oh, don’t you wanna be an athlete?’ I want to become someone that was outside of the paradigm of expectations of the people in power. Fortunately, my depth of interest of the universe was so deep and so fuel enriched that everyone of these curve balls that I was thrown, and fences built in front of me, and hills that I had to climb, I just reach for more fuel, and I just kept going.

    Now, here I am, one of the most visible scientists in the land, and I wanna look behind me and say, ‘Where are the others who might have been this,’ and they’re not there! …I happened to survive and others did not simply because of forces of society that prevented it at every turn. At every turn.

    …My life experience tells me that when you don’t find blacks, when you don’t find women in the sciences, I know that these forces are real, and I had to survive them in order to get where I am today.

    So before we start talking about genetic differences, you gotta come up with a system where there’s equal opportunity, then we can have that conversation.

    — 

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson in response to a question posed by Lawrence Summers, former Treasury Security and Harvard University President

    "What’s up with chicks and science?"

    Are there genetic differences between men and women, explain why more men are in science.

    (via magnius159)

     
  6. 15:07 21st Apr 2014

    Notes: 126

    Reblogged from cognitivedissonance

    Tags: racescience!

    cognitivedissonance:

    scientiststhesis:

    Well, better not let this be buried deep, right?

    Truth.

     
  7. 09:18

    Notes: 107

    Reblogged from obitoftheday

    Tags: the hurricane

    obitoftheday:

    Obit of the Day: “Hurricane”

    Rubin “Hurricane” Carter’s boxing career ended in 1966, after only two years and 40 matches. And it was not by choice. In October of that year Mr. Carter and an acquaintance, John Artis, were charged with murder.

    Ten months later, the two men, who met for the first time on the night the murders were committed, were sentenced to life in prison. They both maintained their innocence throughout the trials and their incarceration.

    Mr. Carter spent parts of 19 years in prison for the triple murder of two men and a woman at the Lafayette Grill in Paterson, New Jersey. It would take until 1985, after two trials, two convictions, and numerous appeals for Carter and Artis to have the charges against them dropped.

    Mr. Carter traveled a rocky road long before 1966. He first came to the attention of law enforcement when he was only 8 years old and had stolen clothes from a store. His father, a deacon in the church and strict disciplinarian, turned young Rubin into the police. The boy was sentenced to two years probation.

    At 11, he stabbed a man and was sent to a state home for boys. (Mr. Carter claimed his actions were self-defense.) When he was 17 he escaped and fled to Philadelphia. There he enlisted in the Army.

    It was while in the military that Mr. Carter first stepped into the ring. He found he had talent, winning 51 of 56 matches and earning the branch’s European light-welterweight championship. A member of the 101st Airborne Division, Mr. Carter was honorably discharged in 1956 - and then served 10 more months in a juvenile correction facility as a penalty for his escape two years prior.

    Mr. Carter thought he hit bottom in 1957 when he was found guilty and sentenced to 4 1/2 years for assault and robbery. (He described the crime as “the most despicable thing” he had ever done.) He spent the time behind bars honing his skills as a fighter and upon his release in 1961 immediately became a professional fighter.

    Winning 19 of his first 22 bouts, Mr. Carter seemed on a path to a title. In December 1963 he earned a technical knockout against world welterweight champion Emile Griffith, who Carter defeated in just two minutes. The victory earned Mr. Carter a title shot for the middleweight belt against Joey Giardello a year later. 

    Mr. Carter lost a 15-round unanimous decision and began a slow descent into mediocrity. After the Giardello fight, Mr. Carter lost 6 of his next 12 matches. His final fight was a loss to Argentinian fighter Juan Carlos Rivero on August 6, 1966. Mr. Carter was charged with murder two months later.

    The crime which Mr. Carter and Mr. Artis were accused of committing was far from airtight. Beginning almost immediately, the case against the two men seemed to lack evidence. On the night of the murder the lone survivor did not identify Carter or Artis as having been at the scene. Descriptions of the killers provided by witnesses “did not come close” to matching Carter and Artis, either. Police claimed to have found a pistol and shotgun in Mr. Carter’s car that matched the murder weapons used at the scene - but they were only entered into evidence five days after the car was seized by police. Finally the state’s key witnesses were two local felons who admitted to being in the process of committing a burglary near the crime scene. 

    Mr. Carter began fighting for his innocence almost as soon as he entered prison. He gained national attention after the publication of his 1974 memoir The 16th Round. It not only earned him the support of activists including Bob Dylan, who penned the eight-and-a-half minute epic song “Hurricane” after meeting Mr. Rubin*, but also a former public defender named Fred Hogan. Mr. Hogan investigated Mr. Carter’s claims, which resulted in one witness recanting his testimony.
    In 1976 the New Jersey Supreme Court overturned the conviction and ordered a new trial. The following year Mr. Carter and Mr. Artis were again prosecuted for the 1966 murders and found guilty once more. This time the prosecution used a theory of “race revenge,” claiming the two men killed the victims in retaliation for the murder of black bartender by a white man earlier in the evening.
    Carter and Artis returned to prison.
    Finally in 1985 after myriad appeals, U.S. District Court Judge Lee Sarokin overturned the 1977 conviction based on the fact that the the prosecution’s case was “an appeal to racism rather than reason, concealment rather than disclosure.” It took 13 more appeals and four more years until Mr. Carter could leave the United States and move permanently to Canada.
    Mr. Carter’s returned to fame with the 1999 release of the film The Hurricane with Denzel Washington portraying the fighter. Mr. Washington earned an Academy Award nomination for the performance. (As with most biopics, Hurricane, was criticized for simplifying and glossing over some of Mr. Carter’s story.)
    Mr. Carter would spend the rest of his life in Canada and in 2004 founded Innocence International to help overturn convictions of the wrongly accused. 
    Rubin Carter died on April 20, 2014 at the age of 76 from prostate cancer. Taking care of him during his illness was his former co-defendant, John Artis.
    (Top image caption: Rubin Carter of Paterson, N.J. watches Florentino Fernandez of Cuba fall through the ropes during their 1962 fight, after Fernandez was knocked out in the first round at New Yorsk’s Madison square Garden. Image is copyright of Marty Lederhandler/AP and courtesy of NPR.org
    Bottom image caption: Former middleweight boxer Rubin “Hurricane” Carter looks over a copy of the court decision denying his request for a new trial, inside Trenton State Prison on December 11, 1974, after learning that his request for a new trial had been turned down. Copyright UPI Photo)
    * Dylan’s song peaked at #33 on the Billboard charts. 
    Note: Having read comments that accompanied the obituaries for Mr. Carter it’s important to note that while Mr. Carter’s murder conviction was overturned, no one is saying that he led a blame-free life. At the same time you can lead a life of crime and still be railroaded for another. Rubin Carter lived a morally gray life. No one is saying that he is a saint. At the same time he can not be punished for a crime he did not commit simply because he previously committed crimes. I have tried to present an even-handed account of Mr. Carter, as have the other obituaries I’ve read.
     
  8. 20:04 20th Apr 2014

    Notes: 264

    Reblogged from theliberaltony

    I find it strange that the Republican position on this law is still stuck in the same place that it has always been. They still can’t bring themselves to admit that the Affordable Care Act is working. They said nobody would sign up. They were wrong about that … They were wrong to keep trying to repeal a law that is working when they have no alternative answer.
    — 

    President Obama. Youtube of his address.

    Every day since Obama signed The Affordable Care Act on March 23, 2010 into law, nearly every Republican prediction has been wrong. 

    (via liberalsarecool)
     
  9. 08:01

    Notes: 2066

    Reblogged from dendroica

    Tags: helen keller

    So long as I confine my activities to social service and the blind, they compliment me extravagantly, calling me ‘arch priestess of the sightless,’ ‘wonder woman,’ and a ‘modern miracle.’ But when it comes to a discussion of poverty, and I maintain that it is the result of wrong economics—that the industrial system under which we live is at the root of much of the physical deafness and blindness in the world—that is a different matter! It is laudable to give aid to the handicapped. Superficial charities make smooth the way of the prosperous; but to advocate that all human beings should have leisure and comfort, the decencies and refinements of life, is a Utopian dream, and one who seriously contemplates its realization indeed must be deaf, dumb, and blind.
     
  10. 00:39

    Notes: 179

    Reblogged from azspot

    Tags: religion

    Megachurches and megareligion (a term I use to include televangelism and webcasts that incorporate even more followers into a congregation or movement) incorporate so many elements of business with marketing, advertising, entertaining, congregation studies, etc., that they confuse corporate Christianity and Christianity that is corporate for the larger culture. If a church is using flashy advertising, powerful websites, is selling merch with their logo on it, then it’s acting like a business. And if businesses are promoting a specific religious doctrine and claiming exemption from laws as a result, it’s behaving like a church. They have blended the corporate and Christian beyond earlier permutations and the current religious landscape has allowed for it. This negotiation of corporate/religious boundaries leads to complications: If large organizations that pull in a lot of money are able to have their religious rights protected, then why can’t others? The difference is that some of those large organizations are churches and others are retail stores.
     
  11. 15:34 18th Apr 2014

    Notes: 385

    Reblogged from redcloud

    [P]ublic schools appeared to be attaining higher levels of mathematics performance than demographically comparable private and charter schools—and math is thought to be a better indicator of what is taught by schools than, say, reading, which is often more influenced directly and indirectly by experiences in the home. These patterns flew in the face of both the common wisdom and the research consensus on the effectiveness of public and private schools. Immediately, we checked to see what had happened in the analysis, whether “public” and “private” had been “reverse-coded” or some other such error was involved. But after further investigation and more targeted analyses, the results held up. And they held up (or were “robust” in the technical jargon) even when we used different models and variables in the analyses. We eventually posted a technical paper on a respected website and published a short article, which received some attention. And then, like any good researchers, we applied for funding to study this issue in more depth using the most recent, comprehensive databases. The results across datasets are consistent and robust—indicating that these patterns are substantial and stable, regardless of changes in the details of the analyses.

    These results indicate that, despite reformers’ adulation of the autonomy enjoyed by private and charter schools, this factor may in fact be the reason these schools are underperforming. That is, contrary to the dominant thinking on this issue, the data show that the more regulated public school sector embraces more innovative and effective professional practices, while independent schools often use their greater autonomy to avoid such reforms, leading to curricular stagnation.
     
  12. 15:33

    Notes: 640

    Reblogged from theliberaltony

    reagan-was-a-horrible-president:

cognitivedissonance:

mediaite:

CNN breaks news of Titanic sinking. 

So this happened…

CNN just keeps sinking lower and lower. (Bad pun intentional)

    reagan-was-a-horrible-president:

    cognitivedissonance:

    mediaite:

    CNN breaks news of Titanic sinking

    So this happened…

    CNN just keeps sinking lower and lower. (Bad pun intentional)

    (Source: mediaite.com)

     
  13. 15:31

    Notes: 2385

    Reblogged from ethiopienne

    A white supremacist charged with killing three people near two Jewish community facilities in suburban Kansas City this week posted more than 12,000 messages on a racist website which carries the slogan “No Jews, Just Right,” according to an organization that tracks hate groups.

    The online activity by Frazier Glenn Cross follows a trend in which prolific posters on hate online forums are becoming “disproportionately responsible” for racist murders and mass killings, according to a report released on Thursday by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a non-profit civil rights organization.

    The report said nearly 100 people in the last five years have been murdered by frequent users of one white supremacist website, Stormfront. The site describes itself as a community of “White Nationalists” and “the voice of the new, embattled White minority.”

    “It has been a magnet for the deadly and deranged,” said Heidi Beirich, author of the report.

     
  14. 15:28

    Notes: 1913

    Reblogged from theliberaltony

    srirachaboune:

stillchrisbrownjet:

descentintotyranny:

LAPD Officers Removed Antennas from Police Cars in Black Areas to Disable Recording Devices
Apr. 8 2014
Los Angeles police officers removed antennas from police cars in several predominantly Black neighborhoods to disable the recording equipment and avoid being monitored while on duty, according to an inspection by LAPD investigators.
The department review found about half of the 80 cars in the Southeast division—which includes Watts and the Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens housing projects—were missing the antennas that help capture what officers say in the field. The review discovered at least 10 more cars in nearby divisions also had antennas removed.
Members of the Police Commission, which oversees the department, said they were alarmed by both the actions of the officers and the failure of the department to reveal their actions when they were first detected.
“On an issue like this, we need to be brought in right away,” commission President Steve Soboroff told the Los Angeles Times. “This equipment is for the protection of the public and of the officers. To have people who don’t like the rules to take it upon themselves to do something like this is very troubling.”
But LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said the department did not purposely try to hide the matter from the commission and pointed out that he has always been a strong advocate of the recording devices. LAPD officials decided it would be futile to try to figure out which officers were responsible for removing the antennas, since so many of them use the cars during their shifts. Instead the department warned officers about removing the antennas and put checks in place to account for the equipment at the start and end of each patrol shift.
One of the main reasons a federal judge agreed to lift the Department of Justice’s oversight of the notoriously corrupt LAPD last year, after more than a decade, was because of safeguards such as the cameras.
The cameras turn on automatically whenever an officer activates the car’s emergency lights and sirens or can be activated manually. They are used to record traffic stops and other encounters that occur in front of the vehicle.
 In addition, officers wear small transmitters on their belts that relay their voices back to the antennas in the patrol car. Sgt. Dan Gomez, a department expert on recording devices, told the Times that regardless of whether they are in front of the camera, officers’ voices can be recorded hundreds of yards away from the car—but that distance is severely curtailed by as much as a third without the antennas.

and this is why the lapd is the most hated, they dirty.

Police Brutality is real, people. 

    srirachaboune:

    stillchrisbrownjet:

    descentintotyranny:

    LAPD Officers Removed Antennas from Police Cars in Black Areas to Disable Recording Devices

    Apr. 8 2014

    Los Angeles police officers removed antennas from police cars in several predominantly Black neighborhoods to disable the recording equipment and avoid being monitored while on duty, according to an inspection by LAPD investigators.

    The department review found about half of the 80 cars in the Southeast division—which includes Watts and the Jordan Downs and Nickerson Gardens housing projects—were missing the antennas that help capture what officers say in the field. The review discovered at least 10 more cars in nearby divisions also had antennas removed.

    Members of the Police Commission, which oversees the department, said they were alarmed by both the actions of the officers and the failure of the department to reveal their actions when they were first detected.

    “On an issue like this, we need to be brought in right away,” commission President Steve Soboroff told the Los Angeles Times. “This equipment is for the protection of the public and of the officers. To have people who don’t like the rules to take it upon themselves to do something like this is very troubling.”

    But LAPD Chief Charlie Beck said the department did not purposely try to hide the matter from the commission and pointed out that he has always been a strong advocate of the recording devices. LAPD officials decided it would be futile to try to figure out which officers were responsible for removing the antennas, since so many of them use the cars during their shifts. Instead the department warned officers about removing the antennas and put checks in place to account for the equipment at the start and end of each patrol shift.

    One of the main reasons a federal judge agreed to lift the Department of Justice’s oversight of the notoriously corrupt LAPD last year, after more than a decade, was because of safeguards such as the cameras.

    The cameras turn on automatically whenever an officer activates the car’s emergency lights and sirens or can be activated manually. They are used to record traffic stops and other encounters that occur in front of the vehicle.

    In addition, officers wear small transmitters on their belts that relay their voices back to the antennas in the patrol car. Sgt. Dan Gomez, a department expert on recording devices, told the Times that regardless of whether they are in front of the camera, officers’ voices can be recorded hundreds of yards away from the car—but that distance is severely curtailed by as much as a third without the antennas.

    and this is why the lapd is the most hated, they dirty.

    Police Brutality is real, people. 

     
  15. 15:14 11th Apr 2014

    Notes: 1164

    Reblogged from breakingnews

    breakingnews:

    Bloomberg News: The U.S. National Security Agency knew for at least two years about a flaw in the way that many websites send sensitive information and regularly used it to gather critical intelligence, two people familiar with the matter said.

    More updates on the Heartbleed bug.