census

Wrath of the Math: Understanding the Census (Pg 3)

A week before the meeting, the Justice Corps signed a partnership agreement with Content to promote the upcoming Census by painting three murals in Bed-Stuy. It’s not an ad on BET, but it’s a start. And the project has a dual purpose. “It helps us take pride in our community by beautifying it,” says Mobley, “and it helps us inform people about the Census and why we need to take part.”

When you come from a life full of hardship, it can be hard to believe some woman talking about how the federal government is going to divvy up $400 billion a year for the next 10 years based on how many people fill out a form. But when prodded, the men do have some interesting ideas as to how they’d like to see the money spent in their ’hood.

“I’d open up a women’s shelter,” says James Jackson, 22. 

“We definitely need more community centers, but not the ones inside the school— like a separate building that’s open on the weekends,” says Washington. “If I had a place like that growing up, I think my life would have been different. I wouldn’t have been in the streets like that.”


Black people are not the only ones who mistrust the census. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) recently made headlines when she revealed that she won’t answer any of the questions on the Census other than her name and how many people live in her household. FOX News hothead Glenn Beck expressed concerns over losing his right to bear arms if he refused to fill out the Census survey. In September, a Census taker was found hung in a rural Kentucky cemetery with the word “Fed” written on his chest.

All this drama over a series of relatively basic question— state your name, your gender, your age and date of birth, your phone number, type of home (house, apartment, trailer), number of other people living with you, whether you sometimes live somewhere else, your race and whether you’re of Hispanic origin? It’s really not that deep.

But the America of 10 years ago is a vastly different country than the one we live in today. Sure we have a Black president, but that fact pales in comparison to the other monumental changes of the last decade: the  September 11th attacks shook the nation and damaged our sense of safety. Homeland security and anti-privacy laws have infringed on our civil liberties. The country is still struggling with wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. And anti-immigrant fervor has lead to the building of a 1,951-mile fence along the Mexican border.

It’s no surprise that suspicions surrounding the intentions behind the Census are running high. They’re even higher in the Black and Hispanic communities— but for different reasons. The loudest objections have come from various Hispanic groups that consider participating in the 2010 Census without receiving U.S. citizenship to be a slap in the face. The National Coalition of Latino Clergy & Christian Leaders is urging its claimed membership of 20,000 evangelical churches in 34 states to boycott the Census fearing that names will be turned over to the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

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Charles Eckert

Chanel Lewis Sentenced To Life In Prison For Murder Of Queens Jogger

A New York judge sentenced the man accused of sexually assaulting and murdering a Queens jogger to life in prison Tuesday, (April 23) despite there being accusations of a coerced confession and jury misconduct.

Cheers broke out inside a courtroom when 22-year-old Chanel Lewis learned his fate. He spoke briefly in court apologizing to the victim's family. “I’m innocent,” Lewis said. “I’m sorry for the family’s loss, but I didn’t do this.”

The victim, Karina Vetrano, 30, went jogging on a park trail in Howard Beach, Queens in August 2016 when prosecutors say she was sexually assaulted and brutally murdered. Her body was discovered in August 2016 by her father.

Lewis' sentencing was initially postponed amid accusations of jury misconduct. However, Judge Michael Aloise decided Monday to move forward with the sentencing. Lewis' first trial resulted in a hung jury and his defense team stated that a desire to swiftly put the case away led to Tuesday's sentencing.

“While there is no denying that Karina Vetrano’s death is tragic and that her family and friends suffered a great loss, every aspect of this case – from the police investigation to jury deliberations – was propelled by a desire to convict at all costs,” The Legal Aid Society, which represents Lewis, said in a statement.

Lewis' defense argued his two-taped confessions were coerced and there wasn't enough DNA evidence linking him to the crime. During the confession, Lewis reportedly said he was upset at his neighbor for playing loud music and when he saw Vetrano he "lost it."

He said he strangled the jogger but didn't sexually assault her. His defense team argued the DNA evidence wasn't gathered properly and didn't match the victim's injuries.

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Adidas, SoundCloud

Adidas And SoundCloud Team Up To Support Emerging Creatives

Adidas Originals and SoundCloud have partnered up to the support the new workforce in the United States: the creatives. The sportswear giant and SoundCloud's latest initiative is to highlight the professional lives of creatives and what exactly goes into their pursuit of their passion. Together, the two brands will give creators the space to share their journeys to the public through their new podcast, 5-to-9.

The name of the podcast was birthed from the notion that creators transition from their 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. jobs to their "5 to 9." The first episode of the podcast has already been released and it features upcoming artist, G.L.A.M, speaking on her growth as a creative.

 

This partnership was created because the two brands "know creators will do whatever it takes to support their passion, from working a desk job to waiting tables they find a way to get paid and invest in their careers." Both adidas Original and SoundCloud invite any and all creators to submit their stories of how their day jobs turned into a "'Nite' hustle" for a chance to win the 'Nite Hustle' starter pack: a pair of adidas Originals Nite Joggers, three months of SoundCloud Pro Unlimited, and SoundCloud's premium creator subscription. The two brands believe that the starter pack (specifically the SoundCloud components) are the best tools and resources for creatives to reach their full potential. To enter, just head here.

SoundCloud and adidas Originals plan to bring creatives' stories to life, and give them a helping hand while at it.

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Muhammed Selim Korkutata

Alabama Deputy On Leave After Comments About Gay Teen's Suicide

An Alabama deputy has been placed on leave after making insensitive comments on social media about a teen who committed suicide after allegedly being bullied for his sexual orientation.

According to reports, the officer has been with the Madison County Sheriff's Office in Huntsville for 12 years and sparked backlash for referring to LGBTQ qualms as "a fake movement which requires no special attention but by persons with an altered ego and fake agenda."

"Liberty. Guns. Bible. Trump. BBQ. That’s my kind of LGBTQ. I’m seriously offended that there is such a thing such as this movement," the deputy allegedly wrote in a Facebook post. "Society cannot and should not accept this behavior. I have a right to be offended and will always be offended by this fake movement which requires no special attention but by persons with an altered ego and fake agenda.”

The law enforcement officer defended his statement as freedom of speech before it was taken down. It was made in reference to 15-year-old Nigel Shelby who took his own life Thursday (April 18) after being bullied for being gay.

In a statement, Monday, the Madison County Sheriff's Office revealed a deputy had been placed on leave, while Local sheriff Kevin Turner offered kind words to the friends and family of Nigel Shelby.

Turner said: “Bullying of any group or person in or outside of schools is unacceptable, and I welcome any and all efforts to raise awareness to bullying and bring bullying to a stop. The Madison County Sheriff’s Office is proud of the community support and engagement we have received over the years, and we look forward to growing those community partnerships.”

 

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