Out of 177 magazines, 143 of the glamorous Photo-shopped portraits featured white men, women, teens and children. From Cosmo to Vogue, Shape and Swindle, from Maxim to Newsweek and ESPN, colored folk adorned the cover of ethno-centric magazines, but not in the general, mainstream public interest publications. It eats at me daily realizing that minorities continue to be under represented in the media, drowned out by a sea of white faces.
Why is there such an under representation when in 2006 the nation’s minority population hit over 100 million? It increased more than 1.7 million the year before, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. That’s one-third of the U.S. population today, larger than the total population of all but 11 countries, and more than there were people in the United States in 1910.
In 1968, the world was aflame with movements for national and social liberation. Wars raged from Angola to Vietnam, Bolivia to Guinea Bissau as the peoples of Africa, Asia and Latin America fought to free themselves from colonial rule, neocolonial dictatorships, and imperial conquest. Politicized by the imperialist repression of both their countries abroad and their neighborhoods at home, Third World peoples living within the borders of the U.S. transformed their anger into militant national movements and organizations like the Red Guard, Young Lords, and Brown Beret, as the Black Panthers had done a few years earlier.
This Friday I’m heading to Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn for the premiere screening of Some Place Like Home: The Fight Against Gentrification in Downtown Brooklyn, a documentary by Families United for Racial and Economic Equality. FUREE, a community organization lead by and comprised primarily of low-income women of color, has been rallying the community in a fight against the rampant development that’s going down in Downtown Brooklyn and the surrounding area. While developers, big business, and politicians alike claim they are only trying to improve the community, the development is being conducted with little care or concern for the residents and small business owners who are already there. Some Place Like Home documents the struggle of FUREE, the neighborhoods’ residents, and small businesses against the forces that are trying to push and bulldoze them out. Check out the trailer below.
Oh silly American media, you forgot that part! You only told me about the scary black men stealing booty.
How is it I have to go to "terrorist" news source, Al Jazeera, to find out that these "pirates" have much more depth to their attacks than what is immediately visible?
Somali pirates have accused European firms of dumping toxic waste off the Somali coast and are demanding an $8m ransom for the return of a Ukranian ship they captured, saying the money will go towards cleaning up the waste.
The ransom demand is a means of "reacting to the toxic waste that has been continually dumped on the shores of our country for nearly 20 years", Januna Ali Jama, a spokesman for the pirates, based in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland, said.
"The Somali coastline has been destroyed, and we believe this money is nothing compared to the devastation that we have seen on the seas."
The pirates are holding the MV Faina, a Ukrainian ship carrying tanks and military hardware, off Somalia's northern coast.
According to the International Maritime Bureau, 61 attacks by pirates have been reported since the start of the year.
While money is the primary objective of the hijackings, claims of the continued environmental destruction off Somalia's coast have been largely ignored by the regions's maritime authorities.
Now for the juicy part...
"Somalia has been used as a dumping ground for hazardous waste starting in the early 1990s, and continuing through the civil war there," he said.
"European companies found it to be very cheap to get rid of the waste, costing as little as $2.50 a tonne, where waste disposal costs in Europe are something like $1000 a tonne.
"And the waste is many different kinds. There is uranium radioactive waste. There is lead, and heavy metals like cadmium and mercury. There is also industrial waste, and there are hospital wastes, chemical wastes – you name it."
Nuttall also said that since the containers came ashore, hundreds of residents have fallen ill, suffering from mouth and abdominal bleeding, skin infections and other ailments.
You know, I get tired of that nonsensical public mentality that is only capable of understanding criminal-like activities as undeniably evil. Can't it be the case that people are forced into criminal activities when they are being consistently beaten down? Can't some people steal a ship to get some leverage in their demands for basic human rights like clean water for their peoples?
When the world has turned its back on you and shat all over your water, it makes sense that your only option is to fight back by any means necessary.