Daily Archive: December 19, 2012

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    President Barack Obama Named Time Magazine Person of the Year

    (CNN) — President Barack Obama is Time magazine’s Person of the Year for 2012. “We are in the midst of historic cultural and demographic changes, and Barack Obama is both the symbol and in some ways the architect of this new America,” Time said in announcing its choice. “In 2012, he found and forged a new majority, turned weakness into opportunity and sought, amid great adversity, to create a more perfect union.”

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    Predatory Lending Practices Continue to Weaken Blacks and Hispanics

    In the first report of its kind, the Center for Responsible Lending has examined consumer lending markets across-the-board and found that despite recent regulatory reforms predatory lending continues to undermine American households trying to rebuild their finances after the recession. The State of Lending in America and its Impact on U.S. Households (State of Lending, http://rspnsb.li/stateoflending) paints a picture of working families struggling to manage debt while coping with stagnant incomes and a substantial decrease in wealth. In fact, the housing crisis has produced the largest documented wealth gap ever between White households and families of color.

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    Behind the Hymn: Silent Night

    It was written by the priest Father Joseph Mohr and the melody was composed by the Austrian headmaster Franz Xaver Gruber. In 1859, John Freeman Young (second Bishop, Episcopal Diocese of Florida) published the English translation that is most frequently sung today. The version of the melody that is generally sung today differs slightly (particularly in the final strain) from Gruber’s original, which was a sprightly, dance-like tune in 6/8 time, as opposed to the slow, meditative lullaby version generally sung today. Today, the lyrics and melody are in the public domain.

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    The Next Einstein is Black

    Amidst a sea of smiles and tears, Southern University-Baton Rouge graduated more than 500 new alumni on Friday, sending them off into hopeful futures as professionals and soon-to-be graduate students. Among them: Polite Stewart, a cum laude graduate out of the university’s Department of Physics, who would love nothing more than to have most people regard him for who he is — a rising star in the physics research field.

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    Passionate About the Wrong Things

    I was in a cab just the other day when the driver chided me for not knowing football. He was a big Redskins (I call them the Deadskins because they need to change their name) fan, and was obsessed with RG III. I must confess that I did not know who RG3 III was until the driver informed me and told me that I was culturally deficient because I lived in Washington, D.C. and did not follow football.

    One Week, Two Sides of Obama

    Over the span of one week, two different sides of President Obama emerged in different yet unforgettable terms. This first was political, involving Susan Rice’s decision to withdraw her name as a candidate for Secretary of State. The second was deeply personal in the wake of mass murders in a Newtown, Conn. elementary school. In a column explaining her decision to withdraw her name, Rice said: ” …As it became clear that my potential nomination would spark an enduring partisan battle, I concluded that it would be wrong to allow this debate to continue distracting from urgent national priorities — creating jobs, growing our economy, addressing our deficit, reforming our immigration system and protecting our national security.”

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    NAACP Religious Leaders Call for Resolution on Fiscal Cliff

    Members of the NAACP Religious Leaders Roundtable who met in Atlanta last week sent a statement to congressional leaders and President Obama calling for a resolution of the fiscal cliff crisis that ensures the common good of the country and meets the needs of the nation’s poorest and most vulnerable. “It is time for the leaders of our nation to focus on the task at hand,” said NAACP Chairman Roslyn M. Brock. “Any resolution surrounding the fiscal cliff must be inclusive of all the people in this nation, assuring job stability and economic stability for all.”