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Weekly News Roundup

Top News Stories About Black Youth from Across the Nation: Dec 31 – Jan 7

Every week, the Black Youth Project collects the top news stories about black youth from across the country. Click here to check out our archive of weekly news round-ups, and check back every Monday for a new roundup of headlines about young black America

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Super Beyowl

The NFL Playoffs last weekend, which is to say that we’re mere weeks away from the  Super Bowl halftime performance by one Beyonce Giselle Knowles. Although I’m a huge football fan, I am admittedly looking forward to this performance almost as much as I am the game. It will in no way reached the stratosphere of Prince’s purple reign over Super Bowl XLI back in 2006, but it will surely provide us plenty entertainment to twitter and Facebook status about.

With that in mind, I’ve decided to post a series of prediction for Bey’s upcoming Super Bowl halftime show. Enjoy (I hope).

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STUDY: Black Students Taught Racial Pride Do Better in School

According to a recent study, black students whose families instill in them a sense of racial pride do better in school.

Published in the journal of Child Development, the study investigated the impact of parental racial socialization practices on the relationship between racial discrimination in school and educational outcomes.

It’s findings challenge the notion that race blindness in a ideal parenting approach for black youth.

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How Will Teacher Trust Impact Black Youth in the New Year?

As I think of resolutions for the New Year, I am often brought back to the one thing that can make the lives of black youth better: a decent education. I have been lucky enough to be placed in positions to allow me to contextualize my own history and educational trajectory, and ultimately have been able to attend institutions that have prepared for the rigors of this society. However, this is not the case for many black youth around the country who are often forgotten when it comes to fair and decent education.

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The Politics of Ratchetness

We can discuss the etymology of ‘ratchet’ all we want, but long story  short, it is  one of the few words in the English language that can equally serve as an adjective (“That club is pretty ratchet.”), verb (“We need play some Fat Trel  so we can ratchet it up in here.”), and noun (“This club is wack. Where are the ratchets when you need them?”). It essentially means rowdy and uncouth. 

Is ractchetness bastardizing Black culture? I’m by no means suggesting that buffoonery is remotely synonymous to the history of the people of  the African Diaspora. However, America’s newfound infatuation with ratchet has created a culture in which ‘Blackness’ is portrayed as nothing more than misogynism, profligacy, drug consumption, and violence. In other words, ‘all we want are big booty hoes for our birthdays’, so we ‘cash out’, ‘pop a molly’, and if anybody tries us we ‘bang bang’. As violence continues to persist unabated in communities of color and rape culture is far too commonplace, we must ask ourselves if the fetishization of ratchetness is changing the way Black youth view themselves and visa versa.

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Youth and Black Unemployment Numbers are SKY HIGH; What Needs to Be Done?

The White House will pat itself on the back for the addition of 155,000 jobs and an unemployment rate of 7.8%.

But the unemployment numbers for people of color and youth remain startling:

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Wisconsin Student Suspended for Placing Noose and KKK Symbols on Black Peer’s Desk

A student has been suspended from a Wisconsin high school for placing a noose and KKK symbols on a female black students desk.

The victim is one of only three black students in the entire school.

According to her foster mother, she has endured racist harassment since joining their family a year ago. Eric Russell, the school’s principal, categorizes the incident as simply a joke gone too far.

Well, we are certainly not amused.

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Armed Teacher Training Program Launches in 15 STATES

The ripple effect of the Sandy Hook School shootings has just gotten incredibly violent.

In the wake of more calls for gun control, the most alarming and ironic consequence is a new ‘Armed Teacher’ program.

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505 Chicagoans Murdered in 2012; Including 108 Young People

In all, 505 (mostly Black and Latino) Chicagoans were murdered in 2012, including 108 young people.

The murder rate increased by a whopping 19%.

The awesome Black Star Project took the liberty of collecting the names of the 108 young people who tragically lost their lives to violence this year.

We too wish to honor these young lives taken from us far too soon:

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News Flash

Congolese Tech Company Launching First ‘African-Designed’ Smart Phone and Tablet

Some young African entrepreneurs are getting ready to make their “African-designed” smart phone available.

VMK, a company based in the People’s Republic of the Congo, has a set of smart phones and tablets that are more affordable and specifically designed for Africans:

VMK announced the launch of the new Way-C tablet and Elikia smart phone earlier this week. To market the devices as authentically African, the budding tech company chose the names Way-C, which means “the light of the stars” and Elikia, which translates to “hope” in the local Lingala language.

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