05-24-2018  2:47 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

Attorney General Forms Hate Crime Task Force

The task force will study hate-motivated crimes and review existing legal protections for victims ...

Portland Art Museum Celebrates Art Museum Day with Free Admission on May 25

Portland Art Museum joins art museums across North America, with great works of art and public programs ...

June Key Delta Community Center Hosts May Week ’18 Health Fair May 26

Event includes vision, glucose screenings, medication disposal and car seat installation ...

Mississippi Avenue Giving Tuesday

On Tuesday, May 22, 10 percent of proceeds from participating Mississippi Ave. businesses will go to SEI ...

Amazon: Echo device sent conversation to family's contact

SEATTLE (AP) — Amazon says an "unlikely" string of events prompted its Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Oregon, family's private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle.The woman told KIRO-TV that two weeks ago an employee of her husband...

Attorney general issues ballot title for assault weapons ban

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon's attorney general has released a certified ballot title for an initiative that would restrict the sale of assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in the state.The title released Wednesday revises the draft caption following comments from the public and the...

Power outages temporarily halt flights at Sea-Tac Airport

SEATTLE (AP) — Officials say scattered power outages halted some flights on the south side of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.KOMO-TV reports airport spokesman Perry Cooper said after 12:30 p.m. Thursday that flights were slowly resuming.Airport officials said on Twitter that all power...

Amazon: Echo device sent conversation to family's contact

SEATTLE (AP) — Amazon says an "unlikely" string of events prompted its Echo personal assistant device to record a Portland, Oregon, family's private conversation and then send the recording to an acquaintance in Seattle.The woman told KIRO-TV that two weeks ago an employee of her husband...

OPINION

Racism After Graduation May Just Be What's on the Menu

Dr. Julianne Malveaux says that for our young millennials, racism is inevitable ...

Prime Minister Netanyahu Shows Limits of Israel’s Democracy

Bill Fletcher, Jr. on racial politics in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s uneven treatment of African immigrants ...

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

NFL's policy could mean a new playbook on protests this fall

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Now that the NFL is drawing the line against players kneeling during the national anthem, athletes protesting police brutality and racial inequality may need to find a new playbook.The question is whether they intend to escalate their protests in some way."The owners can...

Court: School can let trans students use bathroom of choice

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A Pennsylvania school district can allow transgender students to continue using bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their sexual identity, a federal appeals court panel ruled Thursday.A three-judge panel heard extended arguments in the case before conferring...

Body camera video is latest setback for Milwaukee police

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Body camera video showing police using a stun gun on an NBA player over a parking violation is just the latest setback for efforts to improve the strained relationship between Milwaukee officers and the city's black population.The confrontation involving Milwaukee Bucks...

ENTERTAINMENT

Scenes cut from 'Show Dogs' over resemblance to sexual abuse

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two scenes are being cut from the family movie "Show Dogs" after complaints that they resemble real-life sexual abuse, the movie's distributor has announced.In the movie, a police dog goes undercover at a dog show to catch animal smugglers.In one scene, the dog is told to...

Stoner comedy pioneer Tommy Chong still toking, joking at 80

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Yeah man, Tommy Chong says he always knew he'd live to see the day marijuana legalization would be sweeping America.He knew when he and partner Cheech Marin pioneered stoner comedy 50 years ago, a time when taunting the establishment with constant reminders that they...

Paltrow: Brad Pitt threatened Harvey Weinstein

NEW YORK (AP) — Gwyneth Paltrow says ex-boyfriend Brad Pitt threatened producer Harvey Weinstein after an alleged incident of sexual misconduct.The 45-year-old actress told "The Howard Stern Show" on Wednesday she was "blindsided." Paltrow claimed she was 22 when Weinstein placed his hands...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

MLB panel says baseballs getting extra lift, cause unknown

NEW YORK (AP) — Baseballs really have been getting extra lift since 2015, and it's not from the exaggerated...

Body camera video is latest setback for Milwaukee police

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Body camera video showing police using a stun gun on an NBA player over a parking...

Bus driver charged in crash that killed student, teacher

A school bus driver with a history of driver's license suspensions caused a fatal crash on a New Jersey highway...

Israel defense chief plans 2,500 new West Bank settler homes

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's defense minister said Thursday he will seek approval next week to fast-track...

Cyclone Mekunu pounds Yemen island on its path to Oman

SALALAH, Oman (AP) — Cyclone Mekunu roared over the Yemeni island of Socotra in the Arabian Sea on its way...

Saudi Arabia releases 3 women as other activists still held

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Saudi authorities have released three prominent women's rights...

Marc Morial

Should a judge with a long, clear and consistent record of ruling against discrimination victims be given an opportunity to have the last word on civil rights laws that impact the entire nation?


Should a judge who objects to the cases establishing the well-settled principle of one person, one vote be placed in a position to affect the voting rights of millions of African Americans throughout the country?


Should a judge who boasted of membership in an anti-affirmative action group and compares affirmative action to slavery be given the deciding vote that determines whether affirmative action stays or goes?


These are some of the many questions raised by the National Urban League's careful and thorough analysis of the record of Judge Samuel Alito, President Bush's nominee to replace Sandra Day O'Connor on the U.S. Supreme Court. The answers led the league last week to unequivocally oppose the nomination.


The league arrived at this decision after a careful and exhaustive review of Judge Alito's record, judicial philosophy and professional qualifications. Our examination reveals that, throughout his career, Alito has demonstrated an insensitivity to the fundamental principles of civil rights and consistently interpreted the Constitution and laws in a manner that undermines equality of opportunity and social justice.


Our study found that Alito, throughout his career, has vigorously opposed affirmative action; one person, one vote; and other civil rights remedies that protect millions of Americans from discrimination to such a degree that it seems to thwart his ability to fairly apply our civil rights laws.


In fact, not once in 15 years has Alito written a majority opinion in favor of an African American alleging discrimination. He has demonstrated an unwavering adherence to a rigid ideology but seems to lack any understanding of how discrimination impacts real people and why civil rights remedies have been and remain necessary.


Judge Alito has expressed great pride about his days as a player in the Reagan administration's relentless attack on affirmative action, boasting in a 1985 job application of his involvement in cases where the administration argued "that racial and ethnic quotas should not be allowed." However, during his tenure, Alito did not fight against illegal quotas. Instead, he actively worked to dismantle legal affirmative action and curtail the ability of the courts to remedy discrimination.


For example, in urging the court to invalidate a Michigan school policy that allowed White teachers to be laid off first in order to protect the jobs of Black teachers, he argued that affirmative action was tantamount to slavery because "it may still advance some and suppress others not as individuals but because of the color of their skin."


Alito has been nominated to succeed Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who often was the all-important "swing" vote on the court in civil rights cases. Although clearly a conservative with whom we often disagreed, O'Connor was a fair and open-minded judge who decided cases without an unshakeable political ideology. She was frequently the deciding vote in decisions affecting civil rights and in many cases made the difference between maintaining important civil rights protections and losing them altogether.


We urge the Senate not to turn its back on the African American community on this important vote. Eloquent speeches proclaiming a commitment to civil rights mean little when followed by a "yes" vote that rewards yet another anti-civil rights judge with a lifetime appointment where he will do substantial and possibly irreparable damage to those very same rights.


The United States Senate must uphold the Constitution and protect the people it serves by rejecting this nomination and demanding the appointment of judges who will respect, not undermine, our civil rights.

Marc Morial is president of the National Urban League. The league's comprehensive report on the nomination of Judge Alito can be found at www.nul.org/publications/policyinstitute/alitorpt.pdf.

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