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Race & Ethnicity

Race & Ethnicity

Mike Lester | Tolerance / CagleCartoons.com

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Arizona Bans Ethnic Studies and, Along With it, Reason and Justice

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  • There's a word for what Arizona is attempting to do here: ethnocide. It is similar to genocide in its scope, but it reflects the notion that it is an ethnic and/or cultural identity under assault more so than physical bodies themselves.
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  • Anti-immigration zealotry goes after the children
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  • Arizona Strikes Again
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Randall Amster, Truthout

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Jim Fuller

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Ceremonial sounding of the conch shell to welcome participants to the Tucson conference organized by Professor Roberto Rodriquez at the University of Arizona December 2-4, 2010, devoted to addressing issues related to Combating Hate, Censorship and Forbidden Curriculum. (Photo: Leslie Thatcher)

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"While much condemnation has rightly been expressed toward Arizona's anti-immigrant law, SB 1070, a less-reported and potentially more sinister measure is set to take effect on January 1, 2011. This new law, which was passed by the conservative state legislature at the behest of then-School Superintendent (and now Attorney General-elect) Tom Horne, is designated HB 2281 and is colloquially referred to as a measure to ban ethnic studies programs in the state. As with SB 1070, the implications of this law are problematic, wide-ranging and decidedly hate filled."

Whereas SB 1070 focused primarily on the ostensible control of bodies, HB 2281 is predominantly about controlling minds. In this sense, it is the software counterpart of Arizona's race-based politicking, paired with the hardware embodied in SB 1070's "show us your papers" logic of "attrition through enforcement," which has already resulted in tens of thousands of people leaving the state. With HB 2281, the intention is not so much to expel or harass as it is to inculcate a deep-seated, second-class status by denying people the right to explore their own histories and cultures. It is, in effect, about the eradication of ethnic identity among young people in the state's already-floundering school system, which now ranks near the bottom in the nation.

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Related:

Anti-immigration zealotry goes after the children, Lynne K. Varner, Seattle Times | WA
Anti-immigrant zeal morphs into bullying as Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer prepares to sign legislation targeting a Mexican-American-studies program in the Tucson Unified School District.

Arizona Strikes Again, Gail Collins, New York Times | NY

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  • Let us revisit the matter of pulling the plug on grandma.
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  • It came to mind when I was talking to Flor Felix, whose husband, Francisco, a 32-year-old truck driver with four kids, was denied a liver transplant because the Arizona Legislature had yanked funds for it out of a state Medicaid program.
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Wounded Knee: These memories won't be buried

Will America ever own up to its sins?

Tim Giago, (Nanwica Kciji), MCT/Minneapolis Star Tribune | MN

On clear nights when winter winds whistle through the canyons around Wounded Knee Creek, the Lakota elders say it is so cold that you can hear the twigs snapping in the frigid air. They called this time of the year "The Moon of the Popping Trees." It was on such a winter morning on Dec. 29, 1890, that the crack of a single rifle brought a day of infamy that still lives in the hearts and minds of the Lakota people.

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After the rifle spoke, there was a pause, and then the rifles and Hotchkiss guns of the Seventh Cavalry opened up on the men, women and children camped at Wounded Knee. What followed was chaos and madness. The thirst for the blood of the Lakota took away all common sense from the soldiers.

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Hispanics Leaving Connecticut Town, Citing Racial Abuse By Police

"This is a systemwide leadership failure. It's going to need widespread reform," said Dermot Lynch, a student intern with Yale Law School's Worker and Immigrant Rights Advocacy Clinic, whose group filed a lawsuit in October on behalf of nine immigrants who say East Haven police abused them with beatings and unwarranted use of a stun gun. It also quotes officers using ethnic slurs.

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Michael Melia, Associated Press/Huffington Post

Santiago Malave has worked law enforcement jobs in Connecticut for more than four decades, but as a Puerto Rican, he says he cannot drive through his own town without worrying about police harassing him.

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Malave, a probation officer who works in New Haven, says the racial abuse is so bad that he only crosses the town line into East Haven to go home. He and his wife are now preparing to sell their house and move, joining an exodus of Hispanics who say police have hassled them with traffic stops, false arrests and even jailhouse beatings.

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Black Harvard doctor pens memoir of Jim Crow South

By becoming orthopedic chief at Harvard, White admitted, he could have lost touch with his past while walking in circles of the wealthy and Harvard-connected. But White, who now lives in Weston, Mass., said he couldn’t forget those in Memphis and mentors who helped him, even at a time when helping an African-American was dangerous.

Russell Contreras, Associated Press/Boston (MA) Herald

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In this Dec. 21, 2010 photo, Harvard Medical School professor Augustus White poses at his office in Boston. White's memoir, "Seeing Patients," calls for more diversity in the medical field and an end to health care disparities. (AP Photo - Chitose Suzuki)

Growing up in segregated Memphis, Tenn., during the Jim Crow era, Augustus White III knew about those certain places off-limits to him as a black man — restrooms, diners and schools.

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He just didn't pay racial barriers much mind.

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The son of a doctor and teacher became the first African-American to graduate from Stanford Medical School, the first African-American resident and surgery professor at Yale and later the first black department head at Harvard's teaching hospitals.

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Now 74 and one of the nation's leading orthopedic surgeons, White is releasing a memoir on his life. The book, Seeing Patients: Unconscious Bias in Health Care (Harvard University Press, $27.95), is also a call for more diversity in the medical field and the end to health care disparities, something the Harvard professor calls "the last frontier of racial prejudice."

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