Colorlines

NOW IN RACIAL JUSTICE

AARP: Black and Latino Seniors Losing Homes at Twice the Rate of Peers

African American and Latino seniors are each nearly twice as likely as their white peers to be facing down foreclosure, according to an AARP poll released today. The racial disparity mirror that seen in other age groups.

AARP’s poll found that 1.5 million seniors have lost their homes. Another 3.5 million people over the age of 50—or 16 percent of homeowners in that age group—are underwater on their mortgages. The problem is most critical among homeowners who are older than 75; one in 30 in that age group are facing foreclosure, according to the poll.

Previous research on the foreclosure crisis has found that African American women and seniors were particularly at-risk, because homeownership rates were highest among these groups in the black community. Contrary to an oft-repeated idea in news media, subprime lending to African American and Latino borrowers focused on refinance loans. Borrowers who had owned their homes for years—in some cases, generations—were cycled through expensive refinance loans that spiraled up debt and led to foreclosure.

Sofia Vergara May Be Highest Paid Actress But Few Latinos Roles on TV

Sofia Vergara May Be Highest Paid Actress But Few Latinos Roles on TV

“Modern Family” actress Sofia Vergara is the highest-earning woman in U.S. television, taking in $19 million for the past 12 months on a list released by Forbes.com on Wednesday.

The Colombian-born Vergara took the No. 1 spot on the Forbes list thanks to her Emmy Award-winning role on “Modern Family,” her clothing line with K-Mart and her partnership role in an entertainment company that Forbes says “was poised to become a new media powerhouse.”

sofia-vergara-forbes.jpgA bit more from Forbes.com story “Sofia Vergara’s Rich Little Secret: A Multi Million Media Empire:”

Thanks to her Emmy Award-winning ABC sitcom (which averages 12 million viewers an episode in its third season), a clothing line and endorsement deals, FORBES estimates the Colombian-born star made $19 million over the past 12 months from her fame, making her the top-earning actress on U.S. television.

There’s more, though. With little fanfare outside the insular Latino media community, for 16 years she and partner Luis Balaguer have shrewdly built up their company, Latin World Entertainment, from a Miami talent-management firm into a licensing, marketing, production and new-media powerhouse. A source inside the firm pegs 2011 revenues at $27 million—with a healthy profit margin near 20%. Clients include Disney and Paramount; their YouTube channel, NuevOn, premiered in April and immediately sold out ad inventory to Procter & Gamble through 2013.

Don’t confuse the state of Vergara’s success with that of the number of Latino actors on television.

According to the latest numbers from the Screen Actors Guild less than 6% of lead roles go to Latino actors, compared to 74% for white actors. The number of Latinos is supporting roles is slightly better but still dismal at 7.4%.

What’s in Your Wallet? Capitol One’s Predatory Lending, Apparently

Capitol One Bank wins the race for first to be held accountable by the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Yesterday, the CFPB announced its first public enforcement action, fining Capitol One $210 million for targeting credit card holders who are unemployed or have low credit scores with deceptive marketing.

The bureau found that call center agents hired by Capitol One told its most cash-strapped borrowers that a list of add-on products, such as payment protection and credit monitoring, were mandatory or free. They were neither. CFPB Director Richard Cordray had strong words to go with the fine: “We are putting companies on notice that these deceptive practices are against the law and will not be tolerated.”

Trayvon Martin’s Dad: ‘I Don’t Understand What God’ Zimmerman Worships

Trayvon Martin's Dad: 'I Don't Understand What God' Zimmerman Worships

George Zimmerman made his first television interview appearance on Wednesday night with Fox News’ Sean Hannity. Zimmerman apologized for killing Trayvon Martin but then also he did not regret any of his actions because what he did was all God’s plans.

“My wife and I don’t have any children… I love my children even though they aren’t born yet, and I am sorry that they buried their child. I can’t imagine what it must feel like, and I pray for them daily,” Zimmerman said.

When asked if he regrets anything that happened that February night, he said, “No.”

Zimmerman‬ said he had no regrets that he got out of his car or for carrying a gun. It was all God’s plan he said.

“I feel that it was all God’s plan, and for me to second guess it or judge it,” Zimmerman shook his head.

Civil Rights Groups File Suit to Block Arizona’s ‘Show Me Your Papers’ Provision

Late on Tuesday a coalition of civil rights groups asked a federal court to stop the “show me your papers provision” from Arizona’s SB 1070 from going into effect. Of the four primary provisions the Supreme Court considered, it is the one which in its ruling last month, was not blocked.

Now, the civil rights coalition, which includes the National Immigration Law Center, the ACLU and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, is arguing something that the federal government studiously avoided; that SB 1070 and this provision in particular, discriminates against Latinos and those of Mexican origin. The coalition says it is armed with evidence which shows that legislators like the now-ousted Russell Pearce used inflammatory anti-Latino language in their communications about the law.

Section 2(B) of SB 1070 compels law enforcement officers to demand a person’s papers if during the course of a valid stop police have “reasonable suspicion” the person is undocumented. Those who are arrested are allowed to be held in custody until police verify their immigration status.

“In a state that’s more than 30 percent Latino, requiring police to act as immigration agents is an invitation to racial profiling on a massive scale,” Omar Jadwat, a senior staff attorney with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project, said in a statement. “Police chiefs and communities know these laws don’t work, and we hope that the courts will continue to block them from going forward.”

Without action from the courts, the provision could go into effect in a matter of days, the civil rights coalition said.

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Jasiri X Flips Biggie’s ‘10 Crack Commandments’ to the ‘10 Frisk Commandments’

Jasiri X Flips Biggie's '10 Crack Commandments' to the '10 Frisk Commandments'

The creator of “This Week in Blackness” Elon James White and rapper Jasiri X have teamed up to flip Biggie Smalls’ “10 Crack Commandments” to the “10 Frisk Commandments.” Jasiri X says the song goes out to people of color in places like New York, Pittsburgh and the Bay Area “who get harassed just walking down the street.”

“Make no sudden moves, don’t you know these bad boys use violence to silence,” Jasiri Z says in the video directed by White.

White told Colorlines.com that he often jokes about how his knowledge of what to do when he’s stopped by police officers all stems from Jay Z’s “99 Problems.” He explains how the partnership with Jasiri X came about:

A few weeks ago at Netroots Nation I was hanging out with Jasiri X and it hit me. I run up to Jasiri and say “Dude! You should flip Biggie Smalls “10 Crack Commandments!” Make the #10FriskCommandments! What to do when you’re stopped and frisked!” Jasiri thought for a moment and said “That could work.” I was so excited about the idea of it and how great Jasiri is as an artist I offered to direct and shoot the video in Brooklyn on the spot. He brings this issue to light with such passion and clarity that I was glad to be apart of the project. And lets be honest. his verses are FIRE.”

Out of 685,724 NYPD stop-and-frisk stops reported in 2011, 87% percent of those stopped were black or Latino, and nine out of ten persons stopped were not arrested, nor did they receive summonses.

George Zimmerman to Make First Media Interview on Hannity Show Tonight

George Zimmerman to Make First Media Interview on Hannity Show Tonight

George Zimmerman will appear on The Sean Hannity Show tonight for a full hour in his first media interview on the killing of Trayvon Martin, TVNewser reports.

More details from TVNewser:

Zimmerman will discuss what happened on the night of Martin’s death. His attorney, Mark O’Mara, will also participate in the interview and will address rumors circulating about bail donations and hidden money, FNC says.

Hannity has been pursuing a Zimmerman interview for several months. The pair had an off-the-record phone conversation in April. Yesterday, GlobalGrind posted an article claiming that Hannity offered to pay Zimmerman’s legal fees; a spokesperson for Fox News told TVNewser Hannity has never offered to pay “any legal fees or any fee associated with George Zimmerman.”

The Fox News show airs at 9 p.m. ET.

New Romney Ad Pushes Mexican Roots with Grandpa on Horseback Wearing Cowboy Hat

New Romney Ad Pushes Mexican Roots with Grandpa on Horseback Wearing Cowboy Hat

In a new Spanish-language TV ad called “Country of Immigrants” (or, “País de Inmigrantes”) Mitt Romney’s son Craig says his father values “that we are a nation of immigrants” and says: “My grandfather George was born in Mexico.”

It gets even better. As Craig says “my grandfather George was born in Mexico,” images of him wearing a cowboy hat on horseback appear on screen. As if Latino voters will connect more now that they think the Romneys are racheros.

Craig Romney, 31, spent two years as a Mormon missionary in Chile and speaks Spanish fluently. He delivered the message flawlessly. That is of course, if you don’t consider Mitt Romney has said before that calling himself a Mexican would be disingenuous.

“My dad was born in Mexico, and I am proud of my heritage. But he was born of U.S. citizens who were living in Mexico at the time, and was not Hispanic,” Romney told Univision’s Jorge Ramos. “He never spoke Spanish, nor did his parents. So I can’t claim that honor.”

This isn’t the first time Romney uses the power of imagery to connect to the interests of Latinos in his ads that he may not necessarily support.

Romney doesn’t support the DREAM Act but that didn’t stop his campaign from flashing images of young Latina graduate wearing a cap and gown while Craig delivered a line about how the U.S. is the land opportunity where everything is possible.

Craig Romney is currently an advertising music producer at the advertising and design agency mcgarrybowen.

Judge Terminates Detained Mom’s Rights, Allows Missouri Couple to Adopt

Judge Terminates Detained Mom's Rights, Allows Missouri Couple to Adopt

On Wednesday a Missouri juvenile court judge terminated a Guatemalan woman’s rights to her 5-year-son because they believe she abandoned her child when she was imprisoned after a 2007 immigration sting at a poultry processing plant.

Encarnacion Romero, the mother of the child, cried as she was leaving the courtroom, according to the Joplin Globe. Romero’s attorney say they will appeal the decision.

The case garnered National attention when ABC’s “Nightline” covered the story in February 2012.
    

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Nightline’s “Stolen Babies? Controversy in Missouri” segment that aired February 2012.

“This is a sad and outrageous outcome in this case, intolerable really,” said Rinku Sen, president and executive director of the Applied Research Center (ARC) and publisher of Colorlines.com. “All of our systems need to change the way they deal with children and parents affected by deportation, including the family courts.”

A 2011 investigation by Colorlines.com found that there are currently at least 5,100 children in foster care as a result of their undocumented parents being detained or deported.

President Obama acknowledge the findings in a subsequent briefing with reporters and said it was a real problem.

Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-34) has introduced legislation to address the rising number of children in foster care as a result of immigration enforcement. The “Help Separated Families Act of 2012” introduced earlier this month intends to keep children of detained or deported parents united with their families.

Map Shows NYPD Finds More Guns Away From ‘Stop-and-Frisk’

Only 770 guns were recovered from 685,000 NYPD Stop-and-Frisk stops across the city last year, according to WNYC. And those guns are not showing up in the places where the police are devoting the most stop-and-frisk resources.

In February the NYPD released stop-and-frisk statistics to the City Council that revealed the highest number of stops ever recorded in one year. Out of 685,724 stop-and-frisk stops, 87% percent of those stopped in 2011 were black or Latino, and nine out of ten persons stopped were not arrested, nor did they receive summonses.

An NYCLU analysis showed that black and Latino males between the ages of 14 and 24 accounted for 41.6 percent of stops in 2011, though they make up only 4.7 percent of the city’s population. The number of stops of young black men exceeded the city’s entire population of young black men.

Young Asian Fan Recreates Beyoncé’s ‘Countdown’ Shot for Shot

Young Asian Fan Recreates Beyoncé's 'Countdown' Shot for Shot

Everything about this video is impressive. The dance moves, editing, special effects and everything else. Even that Snuggie looks good.

Michelle Obama: ‘We Cannot Continue to Let Families be Broken Apart’

Michelle Obama: 'We Cannot Continue to Let Families be Broken Apart'

First lady Michelle Obama discussed a wide range of issues on Univision’s “Al Punto” this past weekend. The large part of the discussion centered around Latinos and immigration reform.

“There is nothing more critical than keeping families together and that is why Barack has been fighting so hard for comprehensive immigration reform,” the First lady said in the interview. “For the shear fact that we cannot continue to let families be broken apart. That is at the heart of the success of any community.”

A 2011 investigation by Colorlines.com found that there are currently at least 5,100 children in foster care as a result of their undocumented parents being detained or deported.

White Mormon Editor to Women of Color: ‘Can We Be Part of Your Group?’

White Mormon Editor to Women of Color: 'Can We Be Part of Your Group?'

Jeanette Bennett of Utah Valley Magazine has finally responded to the buzz generated by her controversial headline recently. Turns our Bennett is the editor who was responsible for writing the headline “Women of Color” beneath a photo of her all-white staff dressed in colorful outfits. Here’s her letter, and it’ pretty awful:

More from Gawker:

She knows what it’s like to be black:

Although I’m not a minority in my valley, I’m a religious minority in the United States. As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we are headline news in 2012. The media have published a mix of accurate and inflammatory articles about what we believe. Having Mitt as a member has elevated the interest level and the attacks toward our church. So in a small way, I can understand minority groups feeling misunderstood and misrepresented by the media.

She only wants to be able to sit at the black lunch counter like everybody else.

I’m hoping readers can see that my recent article and photo weren’t intended to demean black women. If anything, we are saying we WANT to be women of color. Can we be part of your group? Can we sit at your lunch table?

Florida Black Male Tasered by Police for Allegedly Jaywalking [Video]

Florida Black Male Tasered by Police for Allegedly Jaywalking [Video]

Florida police say they followed protocol when they Tasered jaywalker Zikomo Peurifoy three times after he refused to provide police officers identification for allegedly jaywalking.

“The officers were polite the whole time through and gave good verbal commands,” Capt. David Del Rosso, of the Casselberry Florida Police Department, told ABC News. “You hear the officer saying why he stopped him.”

Peurifoy got a ticket for jaywalking and was charged with resisting arrest and battery on a law enforcement officer. Officers found a concealed gun on Peurifoy but he had a permit to carry the weapon.

Noelle Price, the woman who shot the 10-minute video, was also arrested on a charge of resisting an officer without violence because she did not provide her name.

Lt. Gov.: ‘Black Women Who Look Like Me’ Don’t Do That Lesbian Thing

Lt. Gov.: 'Black Women Who Look Like Me' Don't Do That Lesbian Thing

Florida’s Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll has made national headlines twice in the past week. She was one the estimated 200 Mitt Romney supporters who were bussed in to the NAACP meeting to see the presumptive GOP candidate speak. Now she’s in the news again because a former aide claims she witnessed Carroll and a top aide in a “compromising position” inside the Lt. Governor’s office.

Carroll, who is the first female elected as Lieutenant Governor in Florida and the first black Lt. Gov., says the accusations are lies.

But perhaps she should come up with a better defense.

When asked about the accusations by a Tampa TV station, Carroll poked fun at the accuser’s relationship status, and claimed “black women that look like me don’t engage in relationships like that.”

Apparently she has never seen a black women who wears lipstick and sometimes makes out with other women.

Zimmerman’s Lawyer Outs Witness #9

New documents in the Trayvon Martin case released by the Florida State Attorney’s Office on Monday morning included testimony from a witness that claims George Zimmerman molested her from the age of 6 on through her teenaged years. The witness known only as “Witness #9” made it clear she wanted to remain anonymous and she was able to until Monday afternoon when Zimmerman’s lawyers outed her.

The court redacted any identifying information from the records released on Monday but lawyers outed “Witness #9” as Zimmerman’s cousin.

Zimmerman’s lawyer, Mark O’Mara, released the following statement on Gzlegalcase.com in which he outs “Witness #9.” His statement published in it’s entirety:

Today the State released Witness #9’s Statements along with Mr. Zimmerman’s phone calls from jail in response to the Court’s July 13 order.

In her statements, Witness #9, who is George Zimmerman’s cousin, alleges that Mr. Zimmerman inappropriately touched her beginning when she was 6 and Mr. Zimmerman was almost 8, and that it continued on occasion until she was 16 and Mr. Zimmerman was 17.

The defense moved to block the public release of Witness #9’s statement in a motion filed on June 18, 2012 contending “The content of this statement is not relevant to the issues of this case, and it would not be admissible in the State’s case in chief.” The motion further contends that this irrelevant statement should be withheld from public dissemination because of the substantial risk that public disclosure will lead to widespread hostile publicity which would substantially impair the Defendant’s fair trial rights, and would pose a serious threat to the administration of justice.

That request was denied on July 13, 2012 by Judge Lester. Because there is a Motion for Disqualification pending, this morning, we asked the prosecution not to release Witness #9’s statement until there was a ruling on the Motion for Disqualification. This is an appropriate request as, should the motion for disqualification be granted, reconsideration of recent rulings by the judge is appropriate. However, the prosecution elected to make the public disclosure anyway.

Now that this statement is part of the public record, the defense will vigorously defend Mr. Zimmerman against the allegations. In the next several weeks, there will be reciprocal discovery filed regarding Witness #9’s statement.

FDA Approves Truvada, First Pill to Help Prevent HIV

ucm311823.jpegThe Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday approved the first drug shown to reduce the risk of HIV infection. The agency approved Truvada for use as a preventable measure for people at high risk of acquiring HIV-1, the most common form of HIV.

Two large clinical trials found that when Truvada is taken once daily and used in combination with safer sex practices the risk of HIV infection is significantly lowered:

  • by 42 percent in a study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) of about 2,500 HIV-negative gay and bisexual men and transgender women, and
  • by 75 percent in a study sponsored by the University of Washington of about 4,800 heterosexual couples in which one partner was HIV positive and the other was not.

Debra Birnkrant, M.D., director of the Division of Antiviral Products at FDA, explains that Truvada works to prevent HIV from establishing itself and multiplying in the body. She notes that while this is a new approved use, Truvada is not a new product. It was approved by FDA in 2004 for use in combination with other medications to treat HIV-infected adults and children over 12 years old.

“In the 80s and early 90s, HIV was viewed as a life-threatening disease; in some parts of the world it still is. Medical advances, along with the availability of close to 30 approved individual HIV drugs, have enabled us to treat it as a chronic disease most of the time,” Birnkrant says.

“But it is still better to prevent HIV than to treat a life-long infection of HIV,” she says.

TAGS: FDA hiv

The Queen of Soul is Openly Lobbying to Replace J-Lo on ‘American Idol’

The Queen of Soul is Openly Lobbying to Replace J-Lo on 'American Idol'

Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler have left their judging gigs on “American Idol” and now Aretha Franklin is openly lobbying to get herself on the show. Both CNN and TMZ published reports over the weekend that say the Queen of Soul has contacted producers to express her interest in filling one of the vacated seats on the judges’ panel.

“Yes, I am interested as a judge,” Franklin confirmed to TMZ on Saturday when asked if she was interested in joining the singing competition.

Another source close to the 70-year-old tells the NY Daily News Franklin “seriously gunning for it now that it’s crossed her mind.”

Franklin is known for “telling it like it is.” Julie Hinds at the Detroit Free Press thinks Franklin could easily be the tough judge on the panel:

Franklin calls it like she sees it and has a, shall we say, diva-licious side that would make her a formidable critic — especially if the young, raw auditioners show any major dis-R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Someone should have the ability to equal Simon Cowell’s honesty. We think Franklin could be that person.

There’s one slight problem that could keep the Queen of Soul from joining the panel that travels from state-to-state though. Aretha does not fly.

Zimmerman Accused of Molesting Family Member in Court Testimony

Zimmerman Accused of Molesting Family Member in Court Testimony

Documents released by the Florida State Attorney’s Office on Monday include testimony from a witness that says George Zimmerman molested her from the age of 6 on through her teenaged years. The witness known as “Witness 9” also accused Zimmerman’s family of being racist.

More from Orlando’s WFTV:

Witness No. 9 not only said that Zimmerman is a racist, but during an interview with investigators, she stated that Zimmerman molested her from the age of 6 on through her teenaged years, according to the documents.

The witness claims that Zimmerman’s entire family is racist and said Zimmerman’s mother made it clear she didn’t like President Barack Obama because he is black.

The evidence was released despite a last-minute push by Zimmerman’s attorney, Mark O’Mara, to keep some of it from being made public.

The news comes after another set of documents released last week painted Zimmerman as a hero.

WFTV’s Daralene Jones tweeted excerpts from the documents, Storify timeline via Gawker:

Sheriff Arpaio Tells George Lopez to Call Him a ‘Fat Motherf**ker’ to His Face

Perhaps the least offensive part of George Lopez’s live stand-up special on HBO this weekend was a 2-minute rant on Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

“And while we’re at it Sheriff Joe in Arizona - fuck you you fucking puto. How about that? Fuck you,” Lopez said to a cheering audience of 7,000 fans in Los Angeles.

The F-bombs continued.

“You fat mother fucker. Fuck you. I said I was going to talk some shit. Fuck you Sheriff Joe you fucking puto. Fuck you. Fuck you.”

ABC 15 news report from Sunday.

Arpaio was actually flipping channels with his wife Saturday night when he heard the rant full of profanity. Arpaio quickly changed the channel because of all the expletives, not realizing the rant was meant for him.

“I was surprised at the language. It was pretty nasty,” Arpaio said in an interview with Arizona’s ABC15 on Sunday.

“Get some guts, come down here and meet me face to face. Let’s see how you act then,” Arpaio said.

(Arpaio will probably be really busy for the next few weeks because a class-action lawsuit against him begins in a federal court this Thursday.)

“I guess a lot of people cheered when he talked bad about me. I’m sure they’re not going to vote for me, but evidently they like what this guy is saying,” Arpaio said. They must like the F-word, because everything was the F-word. But the people who march against me, they don’t talk those nasty words.”

“What, is he (Lopez) the spokesman for the open border people?” asked Arpaio. “See I can be funny too, now let’s see if he has the guts to meet me and I’ll be happy to take him to a Mexican lunch.”

Arpaio has brought in a record number of donations to his upcoming re-election campaign. According to campaign-finance reports filed late last month he’s raised than $140,000 from Arizona donors and more than $800,000 from out-of-state contributors during the same period. Arpaio has brought in a total amount of more than $6.8 million for his campaign, according to the Arizona Republic.


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