Friday, January 29, 2016

Cam Newton Doesn’t Dance Around Racism Issues

by William C. Rhoden
Originally Published: January 29th, 2016

As he prepares to take the greatest stage in American sport, Cam Newton has used the spotlight on him to discuss our country’s most persistent and vexing problem: racism.
Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Newton, the starting quarterback for the Carolina Panthers, ensured that Super Bowl week would have a fiery discussion point when he suggested that the criticism of his exuberant style of play might be rooted in racism.
“I’m an African-American quarterback that scares people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to,” Newton said.
As a result, Newton suggested, he does not receive his due as a player: “I don’t think people have seen what I am or what I’m trying to do.”
Racism is the third rail of American consciousness, but raising it just before Super Bowl festivities begin next week, ahead of the game against the Denver Broncos on Feb. 7 in the San Francisco Bay Area, is fascinating.
Good for Newton.
He is being talked up as a top contender for the league’s Most Valuable Player Award after leading Carolina to a 17-1 season, throwing 35 touchdown passes in the process.
“I’m an African-American quarterback that scares people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to,” Newton said. CreditBob Leverone/Associated Press 
He is 6-foot-5, 245 pounds. He likes to celebrate his achievements on the field with dances like the dab or the hit dem folks.
A lot of people laugh along with this, or dismiss it as the crass showboating some athletes resort to, but some are offended: On talk radio and social media, he has been called arrogant and immature, and a picture on his verified Instagram account with friends wearing bandannas generated over 1,400 comments, some of which called him a thug or a gangster.
A lot of attention was paid to a mother in Tennessee who, in November, after the Panthers beat the Tennessee Titans, wrote a letter to The Charlotte Observer taking him to task for not presenting a positive image for children.
“Unfortunately, what you modeled for them today was egotism, arrogance and poor sportsmanship,” she wrote, though there was a sustained backlash against her letter.
Many have sought to explain what sets people off about Newton, be it his conduct or his complexion, or both.
“Newton is a young, successful black man celebrating through culturally relevant means,” Justin Jones, a sportswriter who covers the Panthers, wrote in The Charlotte Observer.
Newton is not a civil rights activist.
But Newton — minus the activism and the championships — has aspects of a latter-day Muhammad Ali. Handsome, talented and bright, he is transforming the position inside and outside the arena. Even before Ali refused to serve in the military, he was disliked by those who disliked how he broke the mold of heavyweight fighters and how they should comport themselves in public, a mold defined by boxers like Joe Louis.
Heavyweight boxing champions were not supposed to write poetry. N.F.L. quarterbacks are not supposed to dance — or talk about race.
But at a moment when violence against African-Americans has given birth to a vibrant Black Lives Matter movement and an intense discussion is being waged about the movie industry under the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite, Newton has forcefully introduced black participation in sports into the discussion.
I have followed several generations of black quarterbacks: James Harrisand Marlin Briscoe; Eldridge Dickey and Joe Gilliam; Warren Moon and Randall Cunningham; Doug Williams, Steve McNair and Michael Vick.
The thread that bound them was a sense of having to prove that they belonged, that they had the intellect, the leadership skills and the courage.
Newton and Russell Wilson are the leaders of a new wave who seem to have the world on a string. The compensation is unprecedented and coaches, far from holding them back, are telling them to do their thing.
Yet Newton sees racism in the underlying sustained criticism of the verve with which he plays the game.
He comes from a generation of young African-Americans who, despite the historic path President Obama has carved, have been sobered — and traumatized — by the reality that no matter what elite schools they attend, no matter how diverse their social network, they are not immune from racism.
Many in this generation harbor resentment, much of it subconscious, of people who dislike them, or perhaps fear them, because, like Newton, they are young, gifted and entitled.
Of course, Newton should expect to be judged through an array of prisms.
He has chosen to play the showman. He has embraced that role, and must accept the criticism that comes with it. There is a thin line between the entertainer and the buffoon, the difference being success. As long as Carolina wins and Newton is the reason for the franchise’s success, he can stand on his head and the fans will cheer.
Endorsements are sure to follow, and he is mindful of that.
I prefer spontaneous, unscripted celebration, but that is a part of a long lost era that has given way to marketing and branding. I still become uncomfortable when people refer to “my brand,” though I realize branding is simply another way to connect with people who enjoy what you have to offer.
Players long ago accepted this, even if they chafe at taunting celebrations.
During an appearance Wednesday on “The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore,” on Comedy Central, Jets receiver Brandon Marshall said that he did not want his quarterback dancing, but he left room for other people doing it.
“I’m from the old school,” he said. “I want my quarterback to get back in the huddle and lead us. But what we have to understand is, this is the new generation.
“This is what they’re doing next. They’re disruptive. They’re disrespectful. They don’t give a damn about anyone. And I kind of like it.”
There was a time not so long ago when a football player who looked like Cam Newton, with the speed of a wide receiver and the physique of a linebacker, would never play quarterback, whatever his race or ethnicity. Black players might immediately be switched to linebacker, tight end or wide receiver, without so much as a tryout.
Ozzie Newsome, the Hall of Fame tight end of the Cleveland Browns, remembers growing up in Alabama as an accomplished high school quarterback. He was 6-foot-4, 225 pounds and possessed the leadership skills that would eventually make him one of the best front-office executives in N.F.L. history.
Newsome knew then that if he had any shot at playing in college and the pros that he had better switch positions, so he did.
“I was a pretty good quarterback growing up, but when it came to organized football, I knew I should become a wide receiver because from everything that I was reading, all the blacks were getting their positions changed,” Newsome once told me.
Now, young black players aspiring to play quarterback can look to a rich class led by Newton and Wilson and envision the possibilities.
“Now you’ve got some heroes that you can look at; there is someone you can emulate who is black,” Newsome said.
I find it refreshing that in the lead-up to the N.F.L.’s greatest showcase, a young, talented quarterback has put racism front and center by suggesting his critics have a problem with him for reasons that run deeper than his performance.
Newton has thrown the hard-to-catch pass in traffic. Will we make the catch? Or will we hear footsteps and drop the ball?

Read the original article from The New York Times here:

Better Data Equals Greater Pay Equality

by Thomas E. Perez, Valerie Jarrett, and Jenny R. Yang
Originally Published: January 29th, 2016

Federal law has banned pay discrimination since 1963. But more than 50 years later, many in the American workplace -- because of their sex, race or ethnicity -- don't get equal pay for equal work. Unlawful pay discrimination shortchanges workers by thousands of dollars a year, affecting people's ability to support their families today and accumulate retirement savings and Social Security benefits for tomorrow.
Today, 57 percent of women work outside the home, but the typical woman working full-time full-year still makes 21 percent less than the typical man working full-time full-year. And the pay gap is significantly greater for women of color: the typical black non-Hispanic woman made only 60 percent of a typical white non-Hispanic man's earnings, while the typical Hispanic woman earned only 55 percent.
That is why today, as the nation commemorates the seventh anniversary of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is taking another important step toward combating pay discrimination. The EEOC is proposing to revise the Employer Information Report (EEO-1) to require employers with 100 or more workers to report pay data, and is seeking public comment on its approach.
For decades, the EEOC has collected annual workforce demographic data by race, ethnicity, sex and job category from certain private employers, including federal contractors. Now, for the first time, it would also collect certain pay data to help the EEOC and the Department of Labor identify potential pay discrimination and support employers' voluntary compliance with federal law. The new pay data would provide the EEOC and the Department of Labor with insight into pay disparities within industries and occupations. The agencies would use the pay data to encourage compliance with equal pay laws, assess discrimination complaints, better focus agency resources where there may be disparities, and reduce burdens on other employers. 
This new pay data will allow the EEOC to compile and publish aggregated figures that will help employers in conducting their own analysis of their pay practices to assist in their compliance efforts. The Labor Department's Office of Federal Compliance Contract Programs, using other data sources, will also make pay data available to the public. These data will also provide job seekers and workers with information on the aggregate pay for job groups across industries, and by gender, race and ethnicity. 
To increase efficiency and minimize the burden on employers, the EEOC and the Department of Labor have chosen to collaborate on the collection of compensation data rather than undertake separate collections. Both agencies recognize the need to streamline data collection and avoid duplicative reporting requirements. 
Employers, including federal contractors, have submitted similar reports for many years, and this new pay data collection will build on established practices. Employers and contractors with 100 or more employees would supplement their existing reports with basic pay range information and hours worked data starting in September 2017. To protect worker privacy, employers will not be required to submit individual-level pay data; employers would report the number of employees within set pay bands. 
The Obama administration has, from early on, placed a premium on combating pay discrimination. "We're going to crack down on violations of equal pay laws so that women get equal pay for an equal day's work," announced President Obama in his State of the Union address on Jan. 27, 2010. He made good on that promise the following month by unveiling his National Equal Pay Task Force. The task force brought together the EEOC, Department of Labor, Department of Justice and Office of Personnel Management to address pay discrimination and has issued reports on its progress, including Fighting for Equal Pay in the WorkforceKeeping America's Women Moving Forward and Fifty Years After the Equal Pay Act
In addition to these efforts, the president signed a presidential memorandum in May 2013 directing the Office of Personnel Management to develop a government-wide strategy to address the gender pay gap in the federal workforce, leading to a report in April 2014 and new guidance in July 2015 (which cautioned against required reliance on a candidate's existing salary to set pay, which can potentially adversely affect women who may have taken time off from their careers). 
The president also issued an executive order in April 2014 prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating against employees who choose to discuss their pay compensation. And today's proposal to collect compensation data is another step toward making equal pay a reality.
The collection of robust, reliable pay data is an important step toward reducing discrimination and finally closing unfair pay gaps. Close collaboration between the EEOC and the Department of Labor, combined with the agencies' significant enforcement experience, will lead to better information for workers, job seekers and employers; improved compliance with equal pay laws; and, ultimately, greater pay equality across the workforce.

Read the original article from The Huffington Post here:

This Is How Jeb Bush Said He'll Handle Islamophobia If Elected

by Julie Zellinger
Originally Published: January 29th, 2016

Donald Trump has not only led the race for the GOP presidential candidate nomination, but he has also been the undeniable center of attention at the many debates held over the past few months. His absence at last night's debate allowed the hopeful nominees left in his wake to share their insights into pressing matters — like rising Islamophobia in the United States, which Jeb Bush tackled head first.
In a video broadcast during the debate, Muslim beauty blogger Nabela Noor noted that hate crimes against Muslim Americans tripled in 2015, and Islamophobic hate speech has also grown.
"As president, what would you do to address this toxic climate and promote increased tolerance in the United States?" Noor asked, according to ThinkProgress.

This Is How Jeb Bush Said He'll Handle Islamophobia If Elected
Nabela Noor
Source: YouTube
While other candidates like Trump have proposed banningMuslim Americans, Bush noted that such hostility "creates an environment that's toxic in our own country," ThinkProgress reported.
Muslim American citizens, like Noor, " should not feel uncomfortable" about their American citizenship, Bush continued. These citizens, he added, "are not the threat. The threat is Islamic terrorism. We need to focus our energies there, not these broad-blanket kind of statements that will make it harder for us to deal with it."
"I was pleased that Jeb Bush answered my question with respect and didn't dodge the question," Noor told Mic's Rachel Lubitz in an email Friday. "I also appreciate that he mentioned that blanket statements do not help, and in fact hurt this country and its people. I wish more candidates jumped in, but maybe they will voice their thoughts publicly soon."
Bush's words are a necessary reminder to the many Americans who have attempted to make Muslim Americans "uncomfortable" — or blatantly threatened. In 2015, multiple mosques were attacked across the country and Islamophobic attitudes were reported everywhere from college campuses to city streets. A 2015 YouGov poll found that public opinion backs these actions: 55% of Americans surveyed had a somewhat or very "unfavorable" opinion of Islam.

This Is How Jeb Bush Said He'll Handle Islamophobia If Elected
Source: Chris Carlson/AP
Though his comments last night were encouraging, Bush's past actions undermine this sentiment. In November, the former governor told a New Hampshire talk show that the United States should enforce a religious test for Syrian refugees and only grant access to those determined Christian, according to ThinkProgress. Last March, a coalition of Muslim organizations also noted that Bush employed a senior consultant who supports "anti-Muslim legislation and Islamophobic causes," according to the Daily Caller.
"I think it's important for us to be careful about the language we use," Bush concluded Thursday night, effectively verbalizing advice he, as well as his fellow hopeful nominees, would do well to follow.

Read the original article from Mic. here:

Mental Health And Syrian Refugees: What Nobody Is Talking About

by Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed
Originally Published: January 28th, 2016

Mental health matters. What happens to someone who belongs to a community that is already being stigmatized and they have mental health issues? Unfortunately in many cases it leads to further isolation, feelings of rejection and depression. According to the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), one in five Canadians experience a mental health or addiction problem.
There is an influx of Syrian refugees arriving in Canada thanks to our amazing new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, 25,000 to be exact; the majority of whom are expected to arrive by the end of March 2016. We cannot imagine much of what these families have endured. Most if not all have lost family members: parents, siblings, children, friends. In some instances they have had to watch them being murdered or raped right in front of their eyes. Most of us cannot bear to hear of the atrocities these families (including children) have faced much less imagine experiencing them for ourselves.
My family has been in touch with some of the new families that have arrived in Montreal over the past few weeks. The experience has been humbling to say the least. They are so afraid, so timid, yet so thankful and appreciative of any good that comes their way. They have left everything behind. In most instances they do not know how to speak English or French, they do not know anyone and have to deal with brutally cold temperatures (contrary to the desert heat they are accustomed to). All these factors make them exponentially more susceptible to depression or further exasperates any existing mental health condition.
These families have to learn to gradually trust once again.
We recently introduced our children to one of the newly settled Syrian refugee families. They have young boys around the ages of our children. They met one another, and in the wondrous way that children do, they played together sharing games and all the while communicating using the universal language of friendship: a smile. They did not speak each other's language. They eventually tried teaching each other words and simple expressions by using hand gestures but none of that really mattered to any of them. All that mattered is they found a new friend to play with. Somehow as we grow older, things begin to change. We over complicate things. We see things through politically motivated lenses. 
My daughter went to school and as her class was learning about the Syrian refugee crisis, she shared that she had recently met a family that had arrived in Montreal. Her classmates were intrigued. They asked if they spoke English or French; she told them neither. She told them that she communicated using gestures, and trying to use Google Translate on Mommy's cellphone. She also told her classmates that they have so little that it makes her sad. The boys only have one pair of pyjamas, one pair of school clothes and limited personal belongings. Her fifth grade class, encouraged by their teacher, immediately sprung into action brainstorming ways they could help out. My heart burst with pride and gratitude that my daughter is surrounded by such wonderful children that wanted to join together to help this family they had never met. They recently got the green light from the school principal to collect items to help the new refugees.
These families have to learn to gradually trust once again. It will take them time to feel safe in their surroundings, to trust others and with time, to enter into the folds of our society. The onus of responsibility falls on us. Those who live here, to reach out, to do what we can to help out. There are organizations working tirelessly; many of which are run by volunteers wanting to make a difference.
I absolutely love the #BellLetsTalk campaign. It helps raise awareness, create dialogue and raise money for mental health initiatives in Canada but the question that I want to ask is what happens after January 27th? What happens when everyone stops talking about mental health? What happens to those who will continue to suffer?
I worry for the families who arrive to this foreign country with a small bag of their belongings and the task of learning a new language, new culture and new life. Winters are brutal for so many of us. Imagine being stuck inside of a small apartment afraid to go outside because it's 30-40 degrees colder than anything you've ever experienced before? Imagine sitting inside because you do not speak the language of the locals? Many of the refugees that have arrived recently are very well educated hold multiple degrees and may have had highly lucrative careers back home. Home being the place that was bombed out of recognition, their belongings ransacked, families killed and life savings spent transporting their families to safety. 
I worry for these families and their mental health. I worry for the mental health of their young children who have had to witness horrors no child should ever have to witness. They have had to travel on foot for thousands of miles and risk their lives for a chance at a future. The future is now. They have arrived in our backyard. Scratch that, they have arrived on our front porch. It is our duty as Canadians to welcome them as our ancestors were once welcome to the beautiful land we call home. It is time we show them what it means to be a Canadian and welcome them to Canada.

Read the original article from The Huffington Post here:

ENTREVESTOR: Digital Nova Scotia works to boost women in tech

Originally Published: January 29th, 2016

When Ulrike Bahr-Gedalia read about Deloitte Canada’s recent report on the status of women in tech, she had to agree with the dismal findings. 
Deloitte looked at the way women are recruited and hired, their retention rates, pay, and paths to promotion, and found cause for concern in all areas.
But Bahr-Gedalia, the President and CEO of Digital Nova Scotia, is also optimistic because she is involved in a project that is boosting women in tech in the province. 
The Women Leaders Fueling the Digital Economy project launched in early 2014.
“This is the first project of its scope in Nova Scotia,” Bahr-Gedalia said.
“The aim of the project is to increase the number of women in senior-level positions working in technology,” she said of the initiative, which is being funded by Status of Women Canada.
Digital Nova Scotia (DNS) is the industry association for Nova Scotia’s information and communications technology and digital technologies sector. 
During the project, DNS has held round-table discussions with senior executives from major ICT companies in the region to develop and implement best practices. 
DNS has also met with managers who supervise around 3,000 ICT employees. The managers were provided with a Representation and Planning Management Toolkit developed by DNS to track and measure their progress in relation to gender diversity. 
“While the project is not finished until August of 2016, we've already seen positive results,” Bahr-Gedalia said. 
“For example, one of our participating companies undertook a gender analysis of the company's compensation system and made several adjustments to female employees' salaries.” 
She said that another organization has made changes to management job descriptions and postings to achieve a greater balance between the requirements for technical skills and business and leadership skills. 
Job postings, especially in the tech sector, often use gender-biased language with a technical focus, despite the need for business and leadership skills, Bahr-Gedalia said. 
“This particular organization reviewed how they could make their posting more inclusive to broaden the number of applicants by highlighting the business and leadership requirements, in addition to the technical capabilities,” she said.
“This approach has led to an increase in applications and hiring of female tech talent in management in this organization.” 
Deloitte Canada’s findings about women in tech were included in its Deloitte Technology, Media and Telecom predictions for 2016.
The company forecast that only 22 per cent of information technology jobs in Canada will be held by women this year, lagging behind the 24-per-cent mark in the U.S. 
Deloitte said reaching gender parity could take decades. Currently, only 25 percent of computer science students in Canada are women, down from 27 percent in 2009. 
Deloitte also found that women are 45 percent more likely than men to leave an IT job after a year. Over five years they are more than twice as likely to leave IT altogether.
When it comes to salaries, U.S. female web designers earn 79 cents for every dollar made by men.
“Pay equity should really not be an issue in 2016, but unfortunately, it still exists, and we need more companies to actively address it,” Bahr-Gedalia said. 
The Nova Scotia project is now entering its third and final phase. This is the Digital Diversity Awards program, which will celebrate regional champions of gender diversity in the tech sector. 
The four award categories include: Women Leaders in the Digital Economy; Diversity Champion of the Year; Power IT Up: Next Generation Leadership and Volunteer of the Year
The Call for Nominations for the Digital Diversity Awards is open until March 8th. Applicants can apply here:

Read the original article from The Chronicle Herald here:

Latin America May Lead The World On Gender Diversity By 2025

by Erik Sherman
Originally Published: January 28th, 2016

The U.S. is expected to lose its No. 1 spot.

When it comes to advancing women in business, maybe the world should take a page out of Latin America’s playbook.
While global corporate gender diversity is forecasted to remain relatively flat for the next decade, according to a new study from workplace consulting firm Mercer, the women of Latin American are expected to make substantial progress, with women holding nearly half of all professional and managerial roles by 2025.
That’s a major reversal of the current situation, where the U.S. and Canada lead in terms of the share of women in middle management and top leadership roles. What’s more, Latin America has often been called out as a laggard when it comes to gender equality, with women greatly underrepresented in CEO and top management roles.
The Mercer study credits Latin America’s expected turnaround to a greater than average middle management engagement in diversity and inclusion efforts (51% versus 39% globally), belief that supporting women’s health is important for attracting and retaining women (56% versus 45%), and an unusually high portion of women in profit and loss roles (48% to the global average of 28%).
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Mercer looked at data from 583 companies across 42 countries—a sample that includes 3.2 million employees, 1.3 million of whom are women. The study suggests that in most world, companies are treating the “symptoms” of a lack of diversity, rather than tackling the root of the issue. It’s prescription: Create a path for women to land mid-level opportunities and, from there, move on to executive positions.
According to the study, women make up a third of managers globally, 26% of senior managers, and 20% of executives. Although these stats show was some progress compared so the 2014 version of the same study, those moves didn’t come from “systemic improvements,” according to Mercer. Rather, the short-term advances arose from “ad hoc actions, such as increasing hiring at the top.”
At the current rate of progress, women will comprise only 40% of professional and managerial workers by 2025.
The gender gap in a powerful force in business. It could take 118 years for gender wage equality to finally come about, according to the World Economic Forum. A study earlier this monthshowed that as women advance in executive ranks, they are more likely to feel less healthy, both physically and mentally.
US and Canada Are About to Lag
While Latin America is the “bright spot,” Mercer partner Brian Levine told Fortune, “When you look to the other regions, we see relative flatness…Looking at how organizations are hiring, promoting, and retaining their female talent, if that continues we don’t see much [future] improvement in gender equality and representation of women.”
Currently, the U.S. and Canada show the highest percentages of women in professional and managerial roles at 39%. That compares to 37% in Europe, 36% in Latin America, 33% in Australia and New Zealand, and 14% in Asia. But by 2025, Latin America is expected to lead the world at 49%. Asia will double its representation and Australia and New Zealand is expected to climb to 40%. Europe and the US and Canada are expected to remain flat, making virtually no progress.
The U.S. and Canada also currently lead when it comes to women in executive ranks (22%), with Europe just behind at 21%. But while both regions will see some significant gains, Latin America will again advance most, going from 17% to 44%. Asia and Australia and New Zealand will each double their representation, from 14% to 28% and from 17% to 34% respectively.
Inclusion, Not Just Diversity
The disparity between the expected increases in executive and mid-level female representation can be at least partially attributed to a “barbell effect,” in which companies focus on bringing more women into support and executive roles, often ignoring professionals and managers.
“In Europe we’re seeing [companies] bringing in women at the executive and board level because they’re forced to [often by quotas], but we don’t think it’s sustainable,” said Mercer partner Pam Jeffords. Similarly, in the U.S. and Canada companies have focused on improving diversity at the top of organizations, probably to address “regulation and heightened media attention,” as the report said.
“It’s a bit of myopia [among executives],” Levine said. “‘We’re at the top. What can we do to fix the top?'”
Programs intended to help women can fall flat because managers and executives don’t embrace new policies and work with them. “You might have diversity, but if you haven’t figured out how to include diverse perspectives, those people may not feel welcome,” Jeffords said. The result is that women leave at higher rates, depleting the already short internal pipeline for promotion and forcing companies to look outside to find female candidates.
To address gender diversity, Jeffords and Levine suggest a four-point approach:
  1. Top management must consider all levels of the company, not just the top and bottom.
  2. Inclusion must become as important as diversity if efforts are to have a lasting effect.
  3. Companies need appropriate policies and procedures and then active involvement of management.
  4. Organizations need to look deeply into their own data to understand where efforts should be applied and whether to focus on hiring, promotion, retention, or some combination.

Read the original article from Fortune here:

Democratic Primaries 2016: The Sexism Is Now Officially appalling.

by Annette Niemtzow
Originally Published: January 28th, 2016

The sexism is now officially appalling. A self-appointed Boy leader of millennials asks the most admired woman in the world why she doesn't make him more excited. No one talks about the arrogance of the question or the questioner.
Charles Blow says "Sanders has become the cool uncle and Clinton has become the cold aunt." Does Blow not see what he is perpetuating? 
If you are politically alert (as I assume you are or why would you read this blog)--Ask yourself if Sanders even mattered to you as a Senator until... like the boy at the Town Hall, he stepped forward, delighting only his very few friends, all on the Far Left. 
No one talks about the arrogance, the egotism of his action? Can you see a 74-year-old woman, a self-proclaimed Socialist proclaiming herself the proper challenger to the most accomplished candidate for President?
Sexism, it seems, is more powerful on the Left than a desire to stop the GOP. Any male messenger will do.
Until Rachel Maddow and the new left on MSNBC gave him air-time, Bernie was just a kooky, old time Socialist from one of the few states, which honor the 60's. Now, according to Charles Blow, he is the cool uncle. 
To me, he is still the kooky, old time Socialist, until very recently, an un-influential and ineffective Senator. Now, as he veers negative, he is willing to damage the woman who will be our nominee, willing to threaten the continued Democratic control of the White House and willing to leave us more vulnerable to 2-4 SCOTUS appointments and an out-of-control foreign policy by a Republican President. Sanders' call over the weekend for a Democratic platform asking for high, high taxes moved even the usually calm and level-headed Nancy Pelosi to step forward yesterday, to say no, that won't be the platform Democrats across the nation will run on. 
Democratic candidates wanting to be elected or re-elected run from him. We want the Party still standing after November 2016.
Bernie Sanders as the messenger? A 74-year-old self-proclaimed Socialist with literally no support in the Democrat organization necessary to get out the voters. (According to Nate Silver, Hillary has 458 endorsements; Sanders has 2. That, of course, is a rallying cry to his young, often male followers, who thinking this is a sign of purity, rather than ineffectiveness and stupidity.)
Why has he even been allowed to run as a Democrat? Would he support the Democratic nominee if it is not him? Would he run as an Independent when Hillary is the nominee? Has anyone asked?
Oddly, is he the Left's version of Donald Trump, a man who thinks only he can make America great again? I don't mean that Sanders is ugly and mean-spirited in his speeches. He is not. But he is a self-proclaimed Messiah whose very being in this election and priorities marginalize women's and race issues in the true tradition of a radical white male of the sixties, which he is. 
To quote the Editorial Board of The Washington Post, "(Mr. Sanders') advisers claimed that more government spending 'will result in higher growth, which will improve our fiscal situation.' This resembles Republican arguments that tax cuts will juice the economy and pay for themselves -- and is equally fanciful."
Or as The Washington Post further said: "Mr. Sanders is not a brave, truth-teller. He is a politician selling his own brand of fiction." 
Bernie Sanders as the messenger.
As Joan Walsh ( said: "I'm tired of seeing...(Hillary).... confronted by entitled men weighing in on her personal honesty and likability, treating the most admired woman in the world like a woman who's applying to be his secretary. 
I'm stunned anew by the misogyny behind the attacks on her, and her female supporters, including my daughter. I'm sick of the way so many Sanders supporters, most of them men, feel absolutely no compunction to see things through female Clinton supporters' eyes, or to worry they might have to court us down the road, take special care not to alienate us lest we sit the race out in November, if our candidate loses. ... I stand with a lot of women who feel the same way, including my daughter, and we won't be erased."
A shout out to Lena Dunham too. She too knows misogyny when she sees it. So do it. I bet you do as well.
Annette Niemtzow, NYC

Read the original article from The Huffington Post here:

Julianne Moore Talks Ageism in Hollywood: "It's Very Difficult to Find Parts"

by Samantha Faragalli
Originally Published: January 28th, 2016

Julianne Moore is getting candid about ageism in Hollywood. 
"It’s very difficult to find parts, no matter how old you are, no matter where you are and whether you’re a man or a woman," the 55-year-old actress revealed in a new interview with Marie Claire.
"The movie industry is not in the business of finding good roles for actors or actresses," she continued. "It is in the business of creating films that will make as much money as possible."
Julianne Moore Getty Images
Julianne in January 2015. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Julianne — who took home the 2015 Best Actress Oscar for her role in Still Alice — also discussed the sometimes frustrating questions women are asked while walking red carpets at award shows. 
"I draw the line at picking up my skirt and showing [reporters] my shoes, but I don’t mind talking about [what I'm wearing]," she said. "For us, the Oscars are exciting, and they are important for our industry, but for people at home, they are watching for entertainment purposes."

Read the original article from Closer Weekly here:

16 Times Latinos Were Brutally Honest About Hollywood’s Lack Of Diversity

by Carolina Moreno
Originally Published: January 27th, 2016

The conversation about diversity in Hollywood tends to reach a fever pitch every year around the time the Oscar nominations are announced. But the reality is that actors of color have to deal with the limitations of working in a predominantly white industry every single day, and they've been voicing their concerns for years. 
For Latino actors the struggle has certainly been an uphill battle. While Latinos constitute over 17 percent of the U.S. population, in 2014 only 4.9 percent of speaking roles within the top films of the year went to Latinos, according to USC's “Inequality in 700 Popular Films" study. And at times, as several artists note below, the roles that are available to Latino actors lean in to harmful stereotypes. 
Here are 16 times Latinos were brutally honest about Hollywood's lack of diversity. 
  • 1 John Leguizamo On The Antidote To 'Hollywouldn't' Stereotypes
    Damon Dahlen/Huffington Post
    John Leguizamo has made a name for himself on-stage with autobiographical productions like his one-man show turned HBO special, "Ghetto Klown." But he didn't just do these projects for fun. During an interview at 2015's Sundance Film Festival, Leguizamo said the projects were an answer to the limited opportunities that exist for Latino actors in Hollywood.
  • 2 Oscar Isaac On The State Of Hollywood Diversity Right Now
    After winning a Golden Globe for best actor in a miniseries or TV film for HBO's "Show Me A Hero," a reporter asked Oscar Isaac if he thought Hollywood still lacked diversity. The actor was quick to clarify that though things have changed, there's still more that can be done.
  • 3 Gina Rodriguez On Hollywood's Limiting Representation Of Latinos
    Before "Jane The Virgin" became a breakout hit and Gina Rodriguez became a Golden Globe winner, she gave a profound and poignant speech about why she became an actress at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in 2014. 
  • 4 America Ferrera On Taking The Lack Of Diversity 'Very Personally'
    After Gina Rodriguez became the second Latina to win a Golden Globe in the best actress category in 2015, America Ferrera told The Huffington Post she was disappointed it had taken 8 years since her own win for another Latina to take home the prize.

    “As an audience member, I take it very personally, I take it extremely personally when I watch,” Ferrera added. “I’m a huge lover of television and of film -- I have been my whole life -- and when there’s too much of the same thing and not enough to reflect the world that I live in, I take it personally.”
  • 5 George Lopez On Minorities Not Being Allowed To Fail In Hollywood
    Comedian George Lopez has had a long career of ups and downs -- but he says the downs tend to weigh heavier when you're Latino or Black in Hollywood. During an interview with HuffPost Live, Lopez made the above statement after being asked about the abrupt 2009 cancellation of his TBS late night show “Lopez Tonight.”
  • 6 J.Lo On Hollywood's Limited View Of Race/Ethnicity For Characters
    Jennifer Lopez may be a megastar, but she says it means nothing when it comes to getting the roles she wants.

    "It's super competitive and it doesn't matter how long you've been in the business or how great you've proven to be -- it's just, does that director want you for that role at that time, can you go in and convince," Lopez told HuffPost Live. "I still have to go in if there's a script that comes along that one of my agents is like 'This is a great script, you know, they want Cate Blanchett, but maybe you can still go in.' [I'm] like 'Just get me in the room! Give me a shot!'"
  • 7 'Jane The Virgin' Star Explained Why Hollywood Is Out Of Touch
    Jaime Camil is a renowned telenovela actor on Spanish-language television. But when the star crossed over with "Jane The Virgin" as Rogelio de la Vega -- the actor told Latina magazine he found the industry to be out of touch with what Latino audiences want. And he had the perfect analogy to explain his point.
  • 8 "Broad City" Star Proved Hollywood Stereotypes Hurt Everyone
    "Broad City" star Arturo Castro didn't just get frank about what the casting process is like for Latino actors in Hollywood -- he also turned the tables. On "Flip the Script with Liz Plank", Castro held a fake audition and told white actors to act "whiter" to show why asking Latinos to lean into stereotypes is wrong. Watch the full prank here.
  • 9 Sonia Manzano Described Feeling 'Invisible' As A Child
    Damon Dahlen/The Huffington Post
    When asked what being Latina meant to her growing up, Sonia Manzano (best known as Maria on "Sesame Street") told The Huffington Post she didn't always love her roots because she didn't see herself reflected in the movies and shows she loved as a child. Read her full statement at Latinos Break The Mold. 
  • 10 Rita Moreno Opened Up About Her Worst Roles
    Oscar-winning actress Rita Moreno described a career filled with stereotypical roles and challenges during a "West Side Story" screening in New York. But she also said despite the fact that Hollywood is a more welcoming place for Latinos today, there is still room for improvement. 

    "The door is open, but the door is not sufficiently open. We still have to push it," she said.
  • 11 Cosmo EIC Said Hollywood Deliberately Leaves Out Latinos
    Damon Dahlen/The Huffington Post
    Former editor-in-chief of Cosmo For Latinas Michelle Mulligan took on Hollywood's Latino problem by pointing out how far the industry is from properly reflecting the reality of the United States. She noted that the lack of representation on-screen made little sense when you consider demographics and Latino's power at the box office.
  • 12 Rosie Perez On The Need To Rock The Boat In Hollywood
    Actress Rosie Perez said she's never been one to stay quiet when faced with Hollywood's limited views of what Latino actors can do on-screen. And the star told Larry King she got major backlash from Latino Hollywood when she tried to "rock the boat." Her response to them was simple:

    “I understand you guys have open wounds from how you were treated but there are wonderful people, who have made strides on our behalf,” Perez continued. “We have to reap the benefits, we can’t just sit there and remain afraid.”
  • 13 Edward James Olmos On Whitewashing Latino Stories
    "Argo" may have won the Academy award for Best Picture in 2013, but as actor Edward James Olmos told The Huffington Post, not many people knew Tony Mendez (portrayed by Ben Affleck) was Latino.

    "At the same time you say well ‘Ben Affleck had to play the role because he wouldn’t have made the movie without playing that role,’ and I said 'Ok that’s great well then Ben Affleck has a responsibility to play a Latino,'" Olmos told HuffPost."So play a Latino, Ben Affleck. You know? Get with it, get with the program. Stop being Ben Affleck playing Ben Affleck the Tony Mendez character of this great story. Be an actor, really get yourself together and move forward on that level. And that movie won Best Picture of the year so look what happens. It’s ridiculous. We have a long way to go.”
  • 14 Salma Hayek On Why Hollywood Doesn't Want Her Anymore
    Salma Hayek surprised fans everywhere when she revealed that Hollywood studios aren't exactly eager to hire her. "I think they don't want me but I don't really care,"Hayek said, according to the Associated Press. 

    During an interview with HuffPost Live the Oscar-nominated actress elaborated on her comment, saying her personality and multi-ethnic background are the reasons she's not getting as many casting calls as in the past. 
  • 15 Andy García On Hollywood's Inability To Look Past Ethnic Surnames
    Andy García opened up about what Hollywood was like for Latino actors when he first started in 1978 during an in-depth interview with The Huffington Post.
  • 16 Demián Bichir On The Need For Diversity Behind The Camera Too
    In an interview with IndieWire, Demián Bichir noted diversity needed to start with those running the show from behind the camera. The ones writing the stories represented on screen.

    Read the original article from The Huffington Post here: