Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Ideas, Actions, and Inspiration for a Better Tomorrow - September 27 Edition

Black Lives, Feminism, Role Models

"Even if their stories weren't told in the headlines or transcribed in the history books, black women have always been at the front line in the fight for equality. Many of the struggles and rewards we have today are off of the shoulders of black women, both known and unknown. These women are essential in understanding feminism and the fight for civil rights.

Composed of various class backgrounds, sexual orientations, and voices, black women are anchored in intersectionality — a term developed by legal scholar KimberlĂ© Crenshaw in 1993 to describe the oppression individuals face due to their position in society. From speaking about issues of empowerment and suffrage to making the connections between race, ability, and gender into conversations around equality, black women have long been teaching about the multifaceted and interlocking systems of oppressions that effected marginalized people.

To better explain this history, The National Museum of African American History and Cultureproduced #APeoplesJourney: African American Women and the Struggle for Equality, an animated visual media that displays the roles of black women feminists through time, in partnership with YouTube for Good.

Lanae Spruce, manager of social media and digital management for NMAAHC, described the video to Teen Vogue as an opportunity to amplify women and tell stories they never heard before about black women leaders; to highlight those stories and expand upon narratives in order to instill a platform that describes the rights of black people and women."

Immigration, Workplace

“Presented as a compassionate but pragmatic compromise, IRCA coupled a one-time amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants with an employer sanctions regime to punish those who knowingly hired persons not authorized to work in the United States.

But the law came into the world with a fatal defect. Because of the clout of strange-bedfellows — a left-right coalition that united immigrant rights activists, Latino politicians, businesses, and libertarians — IRCA was stripped of a mandate for the executive branch to develop a secure means of verifying that workers were authorized. Instead, workers were allowed to present documents from a wide assortment of easily counterfeited identifiers, and employers were required to accept any document that “reasonably appears on its face to be genuine.”

The result was a proliferation of counterfeit documents and fraud on a massive scale. Far from stopping illegal immigration, IRCA had actually stimulated it, according to Philip Martin, an immigration scholar at the University of California at Davis. “Perhaps the most important effect of immigration reform was to spread unauthorized workers from the Southwest to the rest of the country,” said Martin.”

Middle East, Women

"Saudi Arabia’s extreme repression of women has long been illustrated by their prohibition from driving. Some women who have protested that restriction — or flouted it — have been harshly penalized or arrested.

Late Tuesday night local time, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman issued a royal decree declaring that women will soon be allowed to apply for drivers’ licenses and drive legally.
The decree is a win for women, but it’s also a tactical win for the state. Refusing to allow women to drive has been a public relations disaster for the Saudis for years. Giving them the keys, they hope, will not only ease public international pressure but also give women the chance to contribute more to the economy.

Saudi Arabia is the birthplace of Islam. The ban on women drivers has long been explained as being religiously motivated, but it is the only country in the world, of any religion, that had instituted such a ban."

Rural America, Higher Education

"It’s not that rural students aren’t academically prepared. They score better on the National Assessment of Educational Progress than urban students and graduate from high school at a higher percentage than the national average, the U.S. Department of Education reports. At the regional high school Gordon attended in Lenox, Iowa, the graduation rate is typically at or near an impressive 100 percent.

Yet even the highest-income white students from rural areas are less likely to go to college right from high school than their well-off white city and suburban counterparts, according to the National Student Clearinghouse, which tracks this data: 61 percent, compared to 72 percent from urban schools and 74 percent from suburban ones.

Overall, 59 percent of rural high-school grads—white and nonwhite, at every income level—go to college the subsequent fall, a lower proportion than the 62 percent of urban and 67 percent of suburban graduates who do, the clearinghouse says. Forty-two percent of people ages 18 to 24 are enrolled in all of higher education, according to the National Center for Education Statistics, but only 29 percent come from rural areas, compared to nearly 48 percent from cities.

The reasons for this are as myriad as they are consequential, affecting everything from regional economic competitiveness to widening political division."


"When an estimated 4 million people turned up for the Women’s March protest in Washington, D.C., and 650 sister marches across the United States in January, just a day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, both participants and observers asked, “What’s next?”

Nearly eight months later, the march’s organizers are planning a major follow-up event: a multi-day forum, called the “The Women’s Convention,” aimed at building support ahead of the 2018 midterm elections. The convention is scheduled to take place in Detroit on Oct. 27-29.

We need to take the organizing power we gained from the Women’s March and convert that into political power,” said Bob Bland, the national co-chair of the Women’s March on Washington. “Our goal is for people to come out of this with revolutionary new knowledge, training and connections.”

The convention is the latest high-profile effort to maintain the grassroots energy from the January march, which was likely the single largest protest in U.S. history. Organizers expect 5,000 people will attend the convention; nearly 1,500 people have registered so far."

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