Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Ideas, Actions, and Inspiration for a Better Tomorrow - August 1 Edition

Race, Parenting

"Discussing race can be tricky, so as a Black mother I enter friendships with white parents apprehensively. Many white parents are unaware of the additional factors Black parents have to consider when raising a child. Will our daughters be mistaken as more threatening than their white classmates? Will our sons be killed before becoming teens? Are our children being unfairly punished by the education system? And often, white parents are even less aware of the toll systemic racism has on our mental health.

Fortunately, many of my white parent friends have found a way to be allies through their parenting methods. The sense of community I've gained through their actions has given me strength when I have none. Those measures have been so helpful that I believe everyone should be informed and given the opportunity to make a similar impact among their groups of friends. 

Here are four ways my white parent friends have proven to be allies in a non-invasive manner. Think of them as simple, initial tips to help guide your own allyship."

Creativity, Self-help

Video: We all can use more 'aha' moments. These techniques can help.

Gender, Athletics, Role Models

"Yet the preponderance of male coaches, even kind and gentle ones, has consequences for boys. “Boys are denied the ability to see women operate in leadership roles that males most respect,” Farrey said. “This has deep implications for our society as boys grow into adulthood, work with, and decide whether to empower, women,” he added. Exposure to female coaches can pay dividends for boys.

Of course, for girls, the absence of women coaches means a dearth of female role models in powerful leadership positions. And same-sex role models matter, particularly for women. The University of Toronto social psychologist Penelope Lockwood, who has studied the impact of race and gender in role modeling, found that girls benefit from same-gender role models more acutely than boys. Female role models act as “inspirational examples of success” and “guides to the potential accomplishments for which other women can strive,” Lockwood concluded."  

Inspiration, Middle East, Education

Read the transcript or listen to the segment:

SCOTT SIMON, HOST: Malala has turned 20 years old. She shared that event with young Yazidi women in Iraq who are trying to overcome violence and discrimination. That's Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan. Five years ago, she was shot in the head by the Taliban because she spoke up for the right of girls to go to school. She survived and continued to campaign for girls education, becoming the youngest Nobel Peace Prize winner ever. NPR's Jane Arraf traveled with her on her birthday in Iraq.
YOUSAFZAI: When I was about 10 or 11, in our region, the extremist-minded people called the Taliban - they banned girls' education, and I could not go to school at that time. So in response to that, I started speaking out. But then, like, later on, I was targeted by the extremists.

ARRAF: Malala was shot in the head. It's amazing that she lived. She's gone around the world to meet girls struggling in conflict zones and desperate to go to school.

Infrastructure, Transportation Bill

“The Senate Committee on Appropriations passed a bill on July 27 to fund the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development for fiscal year 2018 (which according to the federal calendar begins October 1). The bill funds the Department of Transportation (DOT) at $79.6 billion for FY18 (a $1.5 billion increase from FY17). That total is $1.1 billion more than the House version of the bill and $3.6 billion more than the Trump Administration’s budget request.
The bill was particularly notable on the aviation front, including a $250 million increase in funding for the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) and an increase of the cap on the Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) for the originating airport from $4.50 to $8.50. AIP is an aviation infrastructure-focused grant program paid for out of the Airport and Airway Trust Fund, which is supported by user fees, fuel taxes, and other similar revenue sources. PFCs are fees airports can collect from departing passengers and use to fund federally-approved capital projects. The current $4.50 PFC cap has not been changed since 2000 and inflation and increased construction costs have cut its real value by more than half. As a result, many airports have substantial infrastructure needs they cannot afford to address, evident in the “D” grade Aviation received in the 2017 Infrastructure Report Card. The bill would  require large hub airports that raise their PFC beyond the current cap of $4.50 to give up all their AIP funding (large hubs previously agreed to give up 75% of the AIP money in exchange for raising their PFC to the current cap of $4.50). Increasing both AIP funding and the cap on the PFC are solutions named in the Report Card to improve the grade, so airports of all sizes can address their infrastructure needs”

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