A year ago, Clive Davis' glittery pre-Grammy showcase was winding down
after a number of electric performances when the grandest name of all,
Whitney Houston, walked on stage to close the evening with what promised
to be a show-stopping tribute to her famous cousin, Dionne Warwick.
This year, on the day our nation celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,
I proudly stood alongside NAACP State Conference presidents on the
steps of the capitol building in Columbia, South Carolina for the annual
King Day at the Dome March and Rally. The event has grown into a
massive commemoration over the years, but this year it took on a new
significance as Attorney General Eric Holder joined the commemoration,
honoring Dr. King and pledging to carry forward his mission in the years
A generation gap in several states between older whites and younger
Latinos and African-Americans has race relations experts concerned that
age differences in the population are influencing spending and public
policy in areas such as education, transportation, immigration and
Many African-Americans have hoped to one day achieve the so-called
American Dream. But that vision is fading fast, according to a new
nationwide study in Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company’s
(MassMutual) State of the American Family series, conducted by Forbes
It was nearly 70 years ago in April 1943 that the U.S. Marie Corps
accepted Black units. It was the last military brand to do so. Now
finally Congress has voted to grant the first Black fighters the
Congressional Gold Medal, the nation's highest civilian honor.
At a recent press conference at the California African-American Museum
in Exposition Park, a group of minority leaders formalized an effort to
push for a tax increase on cigarettes. It is all in the hopes of
fighting the proliferation of big tobacco in communities of color. They
are looking to pass the California Cancer Research Act (CCRA).
Death row inmate Mumia Abu-Jamal, who has been battling the court system
since his controversial conviction of the 1981 killing of police
officer Daniel Faulkner in Philadelphia, received some welcome news
recently. The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a request from prosecutors who
want to re-impose a death sentence on former Black Panther and
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) are endangered.
Most are struggling financially and are having trouble luring potential
students. The financial difficulties affect the schools’ ability to
recruit and retain students--as well as stay competitive. And,
statistically, HBCUs are graduating students at lower four-year rates
than regular, public institutions.
Langston Hughes, the famed Harlem Renaissance poet, in what may be one
of his most oft-remembered poems, asked this question: What happens to a
dream deferred? That question, more than any other, may be more pertinent now than ever,
as Friday's August jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics
revealed that African Americans, and young people in particular, are
fast falling behind the rest of the pack.
Have all the reports on the imminent demise of historically black
colleges and universities as we know them been greatly over-exaggerated?
They are if John Silvanus Wilson Jr., Ed.D, has anything to say about
it. Wilson, executive director of the White House Initiative on
Historically Black Colleges and Universities, was appointed by
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and the Obama administration in 2009
to delve into the seemingly myriad list of sustainability challenges
facing HBCUs, from funding woes to graduation rates.