Insight News

Sunday
Dec 21st

Commentary

Young, gifted and poor

The 2009 poverty numbers were released last week, and things are a lot worse than many economists thought they would be.  The poverty rate jumped up a full percentage point, from 13.2 to 14.3 percent.  This means that one in seven Americans live in poverty, 4 million more than a year ago.  This is the third year the level of poverty and the number of poor Americans has risen.


The poverty rate among African Americans rose, too, from 24.7 percent to 25.8 percent.  The rate for Hispanics rose from 23.2 percent to 25.1 percent.  African Americans have the highest poverty rate of any racial ethnic group.  In contrast, the rate for non-Hispanic whites is 9.4 percent, less than half the rate for African Americans.

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Letter to the Editor:

The rising rate of poverty in this county should be enough to make anybody and everybody enraged.  As the pastor of an inner-city Baptist church and the executive director of an agency charged with reducing poverty, understand that I don’t use this word lightly or without forethought.  However, I cannot think of another word that more succinctly describes how I feel. Consider the following highlights from the U.S. Census 2009 report (the nation’s official source on poverty estimates) released on 9.16.10:

Poverty in 2009 rose to 14.3 percent – up from 13.2 percent the previous year. Nearly 4 million more people now live below the poverty line.   The poverty rate is the highest it’s been since 1994, and the 43.6 million people now living in poverty denote the largest number of poor people in this country since estimates were first published more than 50 years ago.
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Closing the income gap

First, the good news. Women are earning more money today than they were ten years ago. Slowly but surely, gender pay disparities are becoming a thing of the past.

Historically, women have always earned less than men. When women first went to work outside of the home, they typically took on ‘pink collar’ jobs that, for many reasons, paid a lower salary. However, as women began to become more educated and branch into different fields, even those dominated by men, they found that their salaries remained lower than that of their male counterparts…even if they were doing the same jobs.
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Gun violence and children: Have we no respect for life?

Gun violence and children: Have we no respect for life?Recently, the United Nations expressed new concern about a crisis many Americans know little about: the use of child soldiers in global conflicts, especially in Somalia. Somalia, whose government collapsed in 1991, has been in a constant state of conflict and tension for years and still has no legally recognized government. The United States joins Somalia as the only two countries in the world not to ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child, an international treaty recognizing the human rights of children that UNICEF points out is the most widely and rapidly ratified human rights treaty in history. One of the Convention’s provisions prohibits the use of soldiers younger than age 15 in conflicts. The United States did ratify a later optional protocol prohibiting the use of soldiers younger than 18. But in Somalia, both insurgent groups and the Transitional Federal Government—which is dependent on help from the West, including, especially, the United States—have been widely accused of violating this principle.
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The world's rich Blacks

As a whole, Black Americans are the world’s richest Blacks.  The per capita income of Black Americans is higher than that of any other Black population.  But, Black Africans are moving ahead of Black Americans in building wealth.   America has two Black billionaires, but the world’s richest Black is Ethiopian-born Saudi citizen, Mohammed Al Amoudi, who has a net worth of $9 billion.  Nigeria’s Aliko Dangote is second a $3.3 billion worth, America’s Oprah Winfrey is third with financial assets valued at $2.5 billion.  London-based Sudanese national Mohamed “Mo” Ibrahim is worth $2.5 billion and South African Patrice Motsepe is worth $2.4 billion.  BET founder Robert Johnson’s divorce dropped him to just a $1 billion fortune.
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‘DARE TO TAKE CHARGE’: Judge Hatchett’s new book challenges readers to live life on purpose

In Dare to Take Charge, Judge Hatchett presents cases of real people who were ensnared in seemingly impossible situations and yet learned to take charge and create fulfilling, positive lives. Much more than just a collection of inspirational stories, however, Dare to Take Charge is also a commonsense guide for readers looking to carve out their own paths toward their dreams. With practical exercises, writing prompts, tips and daily strategies, Dare to Take Charge shows readers how to work toward their ultimate objectives, through life lessons that include:
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Staff stimulus program


When Congress passed legislation that would pump nearly $900 billion into the American economy, many of us felt that, finally, Main Street and not Wall Street was going to catch a much needed break. Then reality set in. Red tape and government mis-steps prevented so much of what the money was intended to fund from happening. And now, to make matters worse, staffing shortages are slowing down distribution of the stimulus funds.

It’s been announced that the government has nearly 25,000 job openings…these open positions are those responsible for monitoring government grants and contracts and to make sure money isn’t used fraudulently. Without the required staff in place, distribution of funds slows down and mistakes – expensive ones – are bound to happen.
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