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Chicago Homicides Up FIFTY PERCENT!

During a telephone interview with the Chicago Tribune on Monday, police superintendent Garry McCarthy divulged that homicides in the city of Chicago were up by more than 50 percent in January.

Homicide is the only category of crime to see an increase thus far in 2012. Half of these homicides occurred in the city’s Englewood and Harrison neighborhoods.

As we told you last week, over 500 young people have been murdered in the city of Chicago since 2008. Although these new homicide numbers cover a short period time, they only further cement the need for something to be done about the pervasive violence in our communities.

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Young, Black, and Locked Up: Florida Edition

As a Black male, my life prospects don’t look too bright- statistically speaking. My life span is 7.1 years shorter than any other cohort group; I’m 5 times more likely to die of HIV/AIDS. That’s just health related. When it comes to education there is a 40% chance that I will drop out of high school. If I’m lucky enough to make it out of high school, the chance of me going to jail is much higher than me going to college. Can my future get any bleaker? Well in the state of Florida it can.

An article published in my hometown newspaper, Sarasota Herald Tribune, exposed the stark disparities in sentencing for Black youth. 84% of juveniles sentenced to life without parole for non-homicide offenses in Florida were African-American. When I read this startling statistic my eyes almost jumped out of my head. It’s not that I didn’t believe it. The criminal justice system has historically been as fair to Blacks as Fox News is to reporting. What bothered me the most was that when I sat back and thought about it, I had not heard any policymakers in my home state address this issue directly.

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Weekly News Roundup

Weekly News Round-Up: Jan. 24-30

Issues not all black and white for some minority voters
Katie McFarland, PNJ News, 1/24/12

Blacks Aren’t Marching on Washington Because Obama’s Black?
Cord Jefferson, Bet News, 1/26/12

Out of the Cold program sees increase in youth needs
M. Carolyn Black, Midland Free Press, 1/27/12

Georgiapolice killing of Black youth, cover up spark protest 
Sam Manuel, The Militant, 1/28/12

Joblessness in the Black Community
Ralph Hollmon, Milwaukee Courier, 1/28/12

Black History is Great! But what about Black Future?
Neals J. Chitan,Spice Islander News, 1/29/12

King’s niece speaks at MLK event
Staff Writer, Daily Press, 1/30/12

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When Keeping it Real Goes Wrong, Hip-Hop Edition

Up and coming rapper Cory Gunz was arrested in New York yesterday with a loaded gun in his backpack (a crime with carries a mandatory sentence of three and a half years). This is the same law that lead to the arrest and incarceration of Lil Wayne, Ja Rule, and Prodigy of Mobb Deep. Interestingly enough, Mr. Gunz recently starred in “Son of a Gun”, a reality series on MTV that chronicled his rise in the music industry. This latest incident could qualify for a episode of Dave Chappelle’s “When Keeping it Real goes Wrong“.

It makes you wonder why a rising Hip-Hop star with no criminal record would be walking around with a loaded gun in NYC? Didn’t he just watch his boss and the CEO of Young Money have to waste 8 months of his career just for touching a gun? His father Peter Gunz said the arrest was the result of an “illegal search”. Really? The NYPD did something illegal? Good luck getting that to stick. Don’t they know about the NYPD’s infamous Hip-Hop police that conduct surveillance on rappers? The real question is, was in necessary? Did he feel a threat so real that he felt he had to protect his life at all times, or was he just living the rap fantasy and felt he had to keep it real?

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Hip Hop Is ‘Mixtape of the Revolution’ in Africa and the Middle East

Sujatha Fernandes has written a fascinating op-ed for the New York Times on Hip Hop’s influence on the waves of revolutions and protests across the Middle East and Africa.

According to Fernandes, Rappers have become highly influential spokespeople for a generation of youth disillusioned with an establishment deaf and blind to their concerns. Emcees are resonating with young people by concerning themselves with the experiences of those on the street, and give a voice to the voiceless.

What we are witnessing is the continued power of Hip Hop music and culture. It may have been co-opted by the establishment in America; but in Africa and the Middle East Hip Hop is setting off one revolution after another.

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The Real Housewives of The Help Go to Africa

Hollywood is so full of liberal do-gooders always on the cutting edge. As such, in advance of Black History Month, they have bestowed many acting awards upon members of the cast of The Help, namely Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer, who both won SAG Awards last night.

Perhaps it was because the embarrassingly entertaining Real Housewives of Atlanta happened to be arguing about how to properly acknowledge one another at the mall at the same time the SAG Awards aired, but Twitter responses to Marlo’s desire to eat some African (it’s a country, you know) food like fish (what she order?/fish filet?) were briefly interrupted by folks going on and on about the greatness of Viola Davis’ acceptance speech. My allegiances are to RHOA, so I googled the speech. Davis looked really nice (those Bassett-esque arms!). Her professional community gave her a standing ovation. She talked about dreams. Shouted out Cicely Tyson and Meryl Streep.

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530 Young People MURDERED in Chicago since 2008

According to a truly disturbing article in the Chicago Reporter, 530 young people have been murdered in Chicago since 2008.

More young people are murdered in the city of Chicago than any other American city.

A whopping 80 percent of these homocides occured in predominantly Black or Latino communities in Chicago’s South, West and Southwest sides. Keep in mind that just one third of Chicago’s population resides in these neighborhoods.

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That’s Not the Only Inappropriate Thing I See

My high school’s administration entertained complaints from a couple of Freshman girls about the overtly sexual nature of the dancing. So grinding makes fourteen-year-old girls uncomfortable. That makes sense. However, the school has made an absurd assessment of why young people dance the way we do. Meetings with the Student Council concerning the next school-sponsored dance have revealed some common notions amongst administrators that are pretty out of touch with students.

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White Teens Attack Black Student, Place Noose Around His Neck

Three white Chicago teenagers have been arrested and charged with committing a hate crime, unlawful restraint and battery after placing a noose around a 17 year-old Black classmate’s neck, and threatening him with a knife.

The victim, Joshue Merritt, had been invited to the home of one of his attackers, unexpectedly walking into a trap.

The attackers were apparently upset with Merritt’s supposed relationship with one of their white, female cousins.

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STUDY: Racists, Right-Wingers Have LOW IQs

This explains a lot, doesn’t it?

According to researchers at Brock University in Ontario, Canada, children with low intelligence are more likely to be prejudiced and racist as adults. This leads to a vicious cycle, since low-intelligence adults are more likely to gravitate towards socially conservative ideologies that stress hierarchy and resistance to change, thereby contributing to existing prejudice.

In other words, racists and right wingers tend to have low IQs. They’re dumb.

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