I let race trump rape

“Like many of the women who say they were assaulted by Bill Cosby, it took me two decades to gain the courage to reveal it publicly. His accusers – mostly white, so far – have faced retaliation, humiliation and skepticism by coming forward. As an African American woman, I felt the stakes for me were even higher. Historic images of black men being vilified en masse as sexually violent sent chills through my body. Telling my story wouldn’t only help bring down Cosby; I feared it would undermine the entire African American community.

…Admitting that Cosby is a rapist would feel like giving in to white America’s age-old stereotypes about black men. It would be akin to validating fears that African American men are lustful and violent. It would be taking away one of our greatest and most inspiring role models – one many African Americans feel we can’t afford to lose.

…Soon after I told my story, I ran into a successful African American photographer who asked me, ‘Sister, is it true?’ The tone of his question made it sound like our father had died. ‘I’m sorry, brother, but it is true. Do not let this weaken you in any way,’ I told him.

Cosby was once a source of hope for many African Americans. But fictional icons like him should not wield so much power over our collective spirit. Our nation’s greatest African American heroes have been on the front lines of Civil Rights efforts, not in our television sets. They are in the mothers and fathers who fought real-life challenges to raise us and in the teachers and professors who worked long hours to educate us. Bill Cosby did not lead the March on Washington, and ‘The Cosby Show’ didn’t end racism. The only legacy at stake is of one entertainer, not of black manhood, as I once feared.” Excerpted from an article by Jewel Allison for the Washington Post.

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Photo by Yana Paskova for The Washington Post

The rarity of a federal grand jury not indicting, visualized - The Washington Post

A data point from FiveThirtyEight’s coverage of Monday night’s events in Ferguson is worth pulling out. “U.S. attorneys prosecuted 162,000 federal cases in 2010,” the site's Ben Casselman writes, “the most recent year for which we have data. Grand juries declined to return an indictment in 11 of them.”

That data is from a report from the Bureau of Justice Statistics and covers October 1, 2009, to September 30, 2010. Over that time period, over 193,000 federal offenses were investigated, about 16 percent of which were declined for prosecution. That leaves just over 162,300 offenses that the government tried to prosecute. And the grand jury decided against doing so 11 times, finding no true bill or a lack of evidence to do so.

i’ve noticed more millennial articles on washington post, but there’s a very common theme, it’s all people born in the early 1980′s.  definitions of millennials vary by institution, it seems like millennials should be born in the middle part of the 1980′s at the earliest.

A person born in 1985 was 16 when 9/11 happened, they weren’t old enough to experience the cold war mentality and only knew about the brief era of peace and prosperity in the 1990′s.  The sudden change into the war on terror was not something they knew about or grew up with.Whereas someone born in 1980 had grown up through 11 years of the cold war, admittedly as it was winding down.  further, they were 20 when 9/11 happened and better able to process what was happening than a teenager or younger could (although everyone experienced it in different ways).

More importantly however was that a person born in 1985 was only 23 when the Great Recession hit.  they probably only had a little work experience and lots of debt if they went to college.  in fact, it gets worse the younger a person was, someone born in 1990 either had to try to find work as hundreds of thousands of them vanished in 2008 or went to college and then tried to find a job in the molasses recovery with little work experience, but a lot of debt.   

Someone born in 1980 meanwhile would have been 28 when the recession happened, with lots of time to get a degree if they wanted and build up a resume and work experience.  they might have lost more because they had more to lose, but with a stronger resume the recovery would have been easier, at least on the aggregate.  to say nothing of how much cheaper college was in the 90s.  

certainly people in the early 1980′s had trouble in the next 30 years, but no where near as much as those born in the later 80′s and early 90′s.

WASHINGTON POST: Kids can learn as much from ‘Sesame Street’ as from preschool

“The paper from the University of Maryland’s Melissa Kearney and Wellesley College’s Phillip Levine finds that the show has left children more likely to stay at the appropriate grade level for their age, an effect that is particularly pronounced among boys, African Americans and children who grow up in disadvantaged areas.”

Selena died 20 years ago today. Here’s why we’re still talking about her mark …

For at least one day every year, Selena-ness is next to godliness. That’s because March 31 marks the anniversary of the death of Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, the Latin pop star and Queen of Tejano, who was murdered by the president of her fan club [Read More]