Saturday, April 30, 2011

Donald Trump Will See Obama Tonight


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, YourBlackWorld.comScholarship in Action 

Donald Trump and Barack Obama will be in the same room tonight.  The White House Correspondents dinner has Trump on the guest list, with President Obama delivering a stand up routine that pokes fun at himself and his presidency.  While almost no topics are off limits during the dinner, Trump doesn’t expect the president to talk about him.

"I wouldn't think [Obama] would address me" during his speech, Trump said to ABC News. 

The Reality of Being a Football Star


Watch as YBW’s Eshe White interviews a former football star about the realities of playing in the NFL



Friday, April 29, 2011

Report Says that Obama’s Father Was Forced Out of Harvard University



BOSTON (AP) — President Barack Obama's father was forced to leave Harvard University before completing his Ph.D. in economics because the school was concerned about his personal life and finances, according to newly public immigration records.

Harvard had asked the Immigration and Naturalization Service to delay a request by Barack Hussein Obama Sr. to extend his stay in the U.S., "until they decided what action they could take in order to get rid of him," immigration official M.F. McKeon wrote in a June 1964 memo.

Is the Catholic Church Racist?


By Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World  – the picture above (left) is from the press conference held for Father Pfleger in Chicago

I went to the press conference being held on behalf of Father Michael Pfleger, the respected Catholic Priest on the Southside of Chicago.  In case you don’t know, Father Pfleger’s church, St. Sabina, is a predominantly black church and his members love him.  He has served the South Side of Chicago with the kind of courage only shown by a true spiritual soldier.  He has stood strong with mothers as their sons have died and has put himself in the middle of nearly every kind of devastation that plagues inner cities across America.

Dr. Boyce: Why I don’t Care about the Royal Wedding


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, YourBlackWorld.comScholarship in Action 

I had to keep myself from getting sick when I turned on the TV this morning to see some random people walking down the street wearing clothes too expensive for nearly all of my friends to afford.  I wondered why the world has become captivated and frozen over such a disgusting exercise of extravagance.  So, I thought I would list at least four of the reasons that I won’t be watching the royal wedding: 

1) Because I simply don’t care and neither do most of the people reading this article.  It’s one wedding, for one couple across the world.  I honestly just don’t get it.

click to read

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Dr. boyce: Cam Newton Goes Number One - Some Quick Advice


Cam Newton, Roger Goodell

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World – Scholarship in Action 

Auburn University’s Cam Newton capped off his stunning win of the Heisman Trophy by being the #1 draft pick by the Carolina Panthers in this year’s NFL draft.

I’d like to make some quick recommendations for Cam as he begins his life of fame and fortune:

1) Save your money:  Most of your fellow NFL players were sweating out the lockout because they weren’t able to make payments on all the cars and houses that they can’t afford.  Get a good financial manager you can trust, learn to start your own business, and make sure you’re educated enough to understand what other people are doing with your money.  If you lose everything, no one is going to care.

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My Visit to See Rocky Clark


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

Today, I stood in the presence of a true soldier. I went to the hospital in Chicago to visit Rasul “Rocky” Clark, the young brother who was paralyzed 10 years ago in a football accident at the age of 16. Rocky was paralyzed from the neck down, only able to move his head and nothing else. His legs and arms are thinner than anything I’ve ever seen, he can barely breathe, and he’s dying right now because his insurance company decided to kill his policy.

Rocky’s mother, Annette, has stood by her son day-in and day-out every single day since the accident. She has a bed right next to him in the hospital and repeatedly told me that “I’m not gonna leave my baby.” Every normal day seems to be abnormally tragic, with nurses cleaning bacteria out of Rocky’s one remaining lung, and the young man quietly repeating the words, “Mama, I can’t breathe.”

Oprah Winfrey Asks President Obama about the Birth Certificate

Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey

Your Black World Reports

On a recent appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show, President Barack Obama was asked about the birth certificate issue.  The president recently released his birth certificate to the public in order to squash growing controversy about his birthplace.

"Why did you wait so long, though?" Oprah asked. "When it first came up, were you thinking, I hope I was born here?"

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Richelle Carey on CNN Discusses the Case of Tanya McDowell (Video)



Dr. Boyce Watkins and Rev. Al Sharpton discuss Tonya McDowell and the Birther Movement


In the episode below, Your Black World Coalition founder, Dr. Boyce Watkins and Rev. Al Sharpton  of the National Action Network discuss the Birther Movement and whether or not it’s racist.  They also discuss the case of Tonya McDowell, the homeless mother who was arrested for sending her child to the wrong school.

Things I Learned about Tyler Perry While Being Interviewed by Mo’Nique

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

I watched Tyler Perry last night on the Mo’Nique Show on BET.  It was an interesting interview, with Mo’Nique fawning over Tyler’s brilliance in the way you would expect an actress to kiss up to one of the most powerful filmmakers in the world.  I fully expect that Mo’Nique will get some coveted roles in future Tyler Perry films.

A Black Prof Discusses Racial Bias in Financial Decisions

Your Black World reports

Have you ever tried to get a loan, and felt that you weren’t being treated the same as if you were white?  What about watching that promotion at work being given to the white guy down the hall when you were the one slaving night and day for 20 years?  Well, this feeling is not uncommon.  A recent survey at showed that nearly 90% of African Americans feel that they’ve experienced some kind of discrimination in the workplace.  In spite of our having a black president and attorney general, new laws have not been introduced to help people of color fight discrimination in the workplace.

Another prominent type of discrimination is the racial bias in other kinds of financial decisions.  Millions of black people were victims of predatory lending during the recent financial crisis, leading to a massive decline in black family wealth over the last decade.  Additionally, the ability to build a business, get government contracts or do other things to create financial security for your family can be impacted by the color of your skin.  Prof. Stephanie Yates Rauterkus at The University of Alabama Birmingham speaks on the topic in the video below.

Click here to watch the video

To join the Your Black World Coalition, please visit

Tonya McDowell Heads to Court Today – 4/27/11

NORWALK, Conn. -- A homeless single mother arrested for allegedly enrolling her son in the wrong school district is set to make her first court appearance Wednesday morning in Norwalk Superior Court.

Prosecutors say Tonya McDowell, 33, stole more than $15,000 worth of education by using her babysitter's Norwalk address to enroll her 6-year-old at Brookside Elementary School.

McDowell told police she was living in her van and sleeping at a Norwalk shelter, or staying at a friend's Bridgeport apartment when she enrolled her son in Norwalk last September.


Click to read

To support Tonya McDowell’s case, please visit the YBW Virtual Command Center at

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

NAACP Signs On to Help in Tonya McDowell


(For Immediate Release)

CONTACT PERSON: Scot X. Esdaile: tel. 203-668-4562

WHAT: Press Conference

Where: Crosland Attorney-Law Firm

1150 Summer Street, Stamford CT – (for directions call

(203) 921-1782

When: Tuesday, April 26, 2011 at 6:30 p.m.

Why: See below

Monday, April 25, 2011

Huffington Post: Women Should Not Be Arrested For Sending their Children to School


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Huffington PostYour Black World Coalition

When I heard about the case of Tonya McDowell, the homeless mother sent to jail for sending her 5-year-old son to the "wrong" school district, I immediately thought back to the case of Kelley Williams-Bolar not long ago. I wondered how the world has gone mad enough to somehow think that it should be against the law for mothers to find ways to get their children access to a high quality education.

As a result of this homeless single mother having the audacity to get her child into a good school, she is being charged with first-degree theft and also being asked to repay the $15,686 it allegedly cost to educate her child in the Norwalk, Conn. school district. No one cares that this family has no home. No one seems to care about what will happen if this child grows up without the only woman on earth wired to love him unconditionally. No one seems to care about the massive costs to the state of prosecuting this mother and eventually the child, as we deliberately trap them in an intergenerational cycle of poverty and criminal justice. All that seems to matter is that they keep this little boy out of their school.

Bishop Eddie Long Tells His Accusers “You Ain’t Messing with Me”

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

The Bishop Eddie Long spoke to his congregation on Easter Sunday, stepping back into the public eye after a period of silence and detachment from the media. For whatever reason, Long decided to address the young men who are suing him for sexual misconduct, telling them that he refuses to be messed with.

“You ain't messin’ with me. I shall rise again and I ain't going through this,” Long said.

It is being reported that Bishop Long is close to reaching a settlement with the young men and his public remarks may be in response to frustrations over the negotiations. Four men who were once mentored by Long have come forth and accused him of using his influence to obtain sexual favors. Using Easter Sunday as his opportunity to share the message, Long continued to make comments about his ordeal to the audience.

Student Gets Life in Prison after Harvard University Murder


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

When most of us think about Ivy League universities, we picture places of higher learning, tranquility and inspirational endeavors. Most of us don’t think about students getting shot over bags of marijuana. But it still stands that Jabrai Jordan Copney is going to prison for a murder that took place on the Harvard University campus.

The murder occurred in 2009 and Copney has been sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The jury took three days to come to its conclusions, and sentenced the 22-year old Copney to spend the rest of his life in prison. He was also convicted of possession of a firearm, but not of armed robbery.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Rep. Allen West’s Sloppy Words about President Obama


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

Below you can watch the video of Allen West, a black Republican, engaging in a highly-disrespectful attack on President Barack Obama. West seems to swim like a happy little pig in the attention he is receiving from Fox News for his willingness to undermine the credibility of another black man in ways that would be maligned if he were white. Because he’s black, it’s hard to accuse West of racism. But he can certainly be accused of being a tool for racists to promote an agenda built on sloppy, malicious rhetoric feeding on white American fears of black men in true positions of power.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Gov’t Tells Snoop He Can’t Sell His Destructive New Drink


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

Sixteen separate states are stepping in the way of Snoop Dogg’s latest big money venture with the Pabst Brewing Company. Attorneys General from Arizona, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Ohio, Tennessee, Washington, Utah, California, Idaho and Connecticut stood against the release of Snoop’s drink in their territories. Additionally, Guam's attorney general and the city attorney general of San Francisco all signed a resolution stating that the drink Blast by Colt 45 is dangerous and being marketed to young people.

The drink contains 12 percent alcohol and is sold in 23.5 and seven ounce containers. It is said to have as much alcohol as five beers in one can. There are several fruity flavors for the drink, including: grape, raspberry watermelon, strawberry lemonade and blueberry pomegranate flavors.

Black Republican Allen West Calls Obama a “Low Level Socialist Agitator”


Allen West Obama Socialist

Your Black World reports

Allen West, a Republican Congressman from Florida, engaged in some interesting black-on-black political crime this week by referring to President Barack Obama as a “low level socialist agitator.”  During an interview with Laura Ingraham, West attacked the president in ways that are rare for an African American.

The Congressman referred to President Obama as a “low level socialist agitator” and said that he displayed “dictator like arrogance” during his budget speech last week. West then went on to Fox News and stood by his remarks:

Al Sharpton SAys Black Intellectuals Don’t Respond Well To HIm: Actually I do

In a recent interview with Newsone, Rev. Al Sharpton laid out some of his divides with black intellectuals. The Rev seems to feel that many in “blackademia” are not comfortable with his approach to politics, and that the divide is becoming more apparent as time goes on. During the conversation, Sharpton had this to say:

“A lot of Blacks in the intellectual circles have a problem with me because of class issues,” Sharptonsays in the interview. “I was a college dropout with a James Brown hairdo. ‘He cant talk for us!’ I mean all of the arrogance! They want to speak about the proletariat but don’t want a proletarian leader!”

I listened to the words with interest, primarily because I think I might have enough education to be considered to be a part of the “black intellectual” class to which Rev. Sharpton is making reference. I suspect that Rev. Sharpton’s remarks are driven by the heated debate between he and Cornel West on MSNBC last week. There have been other incidents in the past, but in the age of Obama, almost nothing matters before 2008.

Recy Taylor: Woman Gets Apology for unprosecuted Rape in 1944

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 


Recy Taylor, a 91-year old woman in Alabama, has received an official apology from the state of Alabama for a rape that occurred nearly 70 years ago.  Ms. Taylor was raped on her way home from church by seven white men.  The men were never prosecuted for their crime and allowed to live the rest of their lives without punishment.

Gov. Robert Bentley said that he plans to sign the resolution, which was passed by the state legislature.  Ms. Taylor was also grateful.

Prosecuted MomTonya McDowell Explains Why She Enrolled Her Son into School

Tanya McDowell says she enrolled her son at Brookside because she wants the best for him.

Photo credit: Moina Noor

Tonya McDowell thought by enrolling her son at a Norwalk elementary school, he would have a better life than she did. "The school was better than the one in Bridgeport," says McDowell. "I want the best for my child. There's nothing I wouldn't do for him. I think a lot of parents in my situation would have done the same."

McDowell, 33, is charged with first-degree larceny for allegedly stealing more than $15,000 — the average amount it takes to educate a child per year in Norwalk. McDowell allegedly used her babysitter's address at Roodner Court, a Norwalk Housing Authority complex, to enroll her son at Brookside Elementary School. McDowell, who is originally from Bridgeport but has no fixed residence, is an unemployed single mother. She currently stays with a friend in Bridgeport but has also stayed at the Open Door Shelter in South Norwalk.

When the Norwalk police arrested Tanya McDowell last Thursday, she had no idea why. "I kept asking, 'What did I do?' " she says in an interview outside the offices of Norwalk Economic Opportunity Now, or NEON, overlooking the big chessboard in Ryan Park. It wasn't until she arrived at the police station that she learned of the charges. McDowell posted $25,000 bond with the help of her godfather and has her next court date April 27.

McDowell's 5-year-old son, Andrew Justin, or A.J., started kindergarten at Brookside in September and left in mid-January. "I received a call on my voicemail telling me that I had to remove A.J. from the school. No paperwork or anything, just a voicemail." McDowell says that she didn't contest the message and withdrew A.J. from Brookside. "He loved that school, his teacher and his friends," she says of A.J.'s four months at Brookside. "He never got into any trouble."

Click to read.

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Lashanda Armstrong: If you Kill Your own kids, do you have the right to be buried with them?


Your Black World Reports

Most of us know about the case of LaShanda Armstrong, the mother who killed three of her children by driving them into the Hudson River.   Controversy erupted when the childrens’ father announced that LaShanda would not be buried along with her children.  This leads us to openly question whether a parent who kills their kids has the right to be buried with them.


Click to read

Dr. Boyce and Deborrah Cooper Debate What It Means for a Woman to “Submit” To Her Man


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World

Given the importance of the critical theme of black relationships (which we’re hitting from various angles this week on YBW), I had to get another perspective on some of the things that folks are quoting from the bible as it pertains to how black relationships need to be structured.  What does it mean for a black man to “lead” in his relationship?  What does it mean for a woman to “submit?”  One thing that many of us can agree on is the fact that black relationships have been falling apart for a very long time.  The majority of our homes are being run by a single parent, and far too many children are growing up without their fathers in shouting distance.  What some don’t acknowledge is that there is a direct correlation between the break down of the black family and the growth of the prison industrial complex.  Locking up men for decades for the sale of drugs that were brought into our communities has devastated many of us, and urban decay in the 1980s led to job losses with few viable alternatives to illegal activity.  A recent study in The Economist showed that a one percentage point increase in the incarceration rate leads to a 2.4 percent decline in the percentage of black women who eventually get married.


Click to read

First Grader Handcuffed and Taken Out of Class by NYPD

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World – Scholarship in Action 

A 7-year old special ed student became upset while decorating an easter egg, and ended up being handcuffed by the NYPD as a result.  Joseph Anderson, a first-grader, was taken to the hospital in metal handcuffs by the police, in spite of the fact that his mother said she was on her way to pick him up.

"He was crying and saying, 'I want Mommy,'" said his mother, Jessica Anderson. "Why handcuff him? Why get the cops involved? He's only 7."

According to his mother, Joseph has been wetting himself and vomiting since the incident, which took place on April 13. 

"If he hears an ambulance, he runs under the bed and screams, 'They're going to get me,'" said his mother. "He's really traumatized. I don't let him watch the news anymore, because if he sees cops, he cries."

Click to read.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Connecticut Parents Come Together to Support Tonya McDowell

From Dr. Boyce Watkins:

As you know, the Your Black World Coalition is seeking justice for Tonya McDowell, the homeless single mother who was arrested for sending her child to the “wrong” school district (similar to the case of Kelley Williams-Bolar a few months ago).

I just spoke yesterday with Gwen Samuel from the Connecticut Parents’ Union.  She has informed me of the situation on the ground in Connecticut with regard to educational inequality.  As in many other cities across the nation, the schools in Norwalk, CT (where Ms. McDowell sent her child) are far superior to the schools in Bridgeport, CT (where she was legally expected to send her little boy).  Therefore, while we can’t say for sure exactly why Ms. McDowell broke the law to send her child to the Norwalk school system, it is clear that there is a strong incentive to break the law to get access to a quality education.

Click to read.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The BP Oil Spill One Year Later: Corporate Greed 101


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

It’s a year after the start of the infamous BP oil spill that stole the attention of the nation for several months. One year ago today, the oil giant began the process of spilling five million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, killing everything in its grasp, starting with 11 oil workers who were near the initial explosion. After taking out the workers, the spill generated an unprecedented genocide on local wildlife, killing thousands of fish, birds and other species that lived within the ocean. The BP beast also murdered local businesses that depended on the Gulf for their livelihoods, with almost none of those businesses being able to restore their full economic value.

Tourists are no longer interested in swimming in water that was so heavily polluted just a few months ago.


Click to read.

Dr. Boyce and Rev. Al Discuss Malcolm X and the Obama Monkey Incident


Click here to listen to Dr. Boyce and Rev. Al Sharpton discuss the incident in which President Obama’s face was place on the body of a chimp in an email that was distributed by a Republican leader in California.  They also discuss the assassination of Malcolm X and the result of a YBW poll on the black perception of the Nation of Islam’s role in his death.  Many have speculated that


CClick to read

Jail Bans All Books Except the Bible

Comstock Images/GETTY

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World 

A South Carolina jail has ruled that all inmates in the jail are not allowed to have any books whatsoever, except the bible.  The jailers in Moncks Corner, South Carolina are receiving national scrutiny for passing the rule, which some claim to be a violation of freedom of speech and patently disrespectful to those who are not Christian.  There is also the concern that inmates are not given any opportunity to expand their minds or better themselves during their incarceration.

The U.S. Justice Department has filed a complaint against the jail, and joined the American Civil Liberties Union in its lawsuit.  In an email quoted by the Associated Press, one of the jail officials by the name of First Sgt. K. Habersham said: “Our inmates are only allowed to receive soft back bibles in the mail directly from the publisher…. They are not allowed to have magazines, newspapers, or any other type of books.”


Click to read.

Black Republican Armstrong Williams Debates with Dr. Boyce Watkins

Your Black World reports

In this audio clip, Dr. Boyce Watkins and conservative Amstrong Williams debate on “Open Line” on Kiss-FM in New York City.

Dr. Watkins and Mr. Williams stand on different sides of the ideological fence as it pertains to how to cut the national debt.  Williams argues that deep cuts in government spending are necessary, including Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.  He says that the United States government is at risk of default within the next 10 years, which could send our country into an economic tailspin.


Click to read.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Tonya McDowell: Homeless Mom Sent to Jail for Sending Child to the Wrong School

Please click here to join our coalition to help Ms. McDowell

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action

When Rev. Al Sharpton and I went to Ohio earlier this year to rally on behalf of Kelley Williams-Bolar, I thought I’d be done with cases like this for at least a little while. However, the Your Black World Coalition has been informed today that another mother in Connecticut has also been put in jail for enrolling her child in the wrong school district.

Tonya McDowell, a homeless woman from Bridgeport, CT, has been charged with grand larceny and conspiracy to commit first degree larceny after enrolling her son in Brookside Elementary, in Norwalk, CT. McDowell used the address of a friend, Ana Rebecca Marques, to get her 6-year old into the school. The district is accusing her of stealing $15,000 in services for her “deviant” behavior.

Ms. Marques was evicted from the Norwalk Housing Authority projects for her role in the incident after a complaint was filed against Ms. McDowell. This led to an investigation, where the mother filed an affidavit stating her son’s residence to be in the Roodner Court Public housing complex in Norwalk.

Ms. McDowell told police that she’d been living in Bridgeport in a homeless shelter when her son was enrolled in school. She also said she has a friend in Norwalk who allowed her to stay there at night and leave during the day.  Effectively, she and her son were rotating between the homeless shelter and staying with friends in order to survive.

Click to read more.

CNN, MSNBC, FOX Still Have No Black Hosts at Night – What Gives?


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World 

The New York Post has revealed that CNN is once again considering bringing in a person of color to one of their night time anchor spots. The move is long overdue, since black and brown people have been subject to the “All-white, all-night” phenomenon, where none of the major cable news networks have granted any of their nightly branded news spots to an African American host. This is nothing short of insulting, given that black people are very good at showing loyalty to those who don’t feel compelled to return the favor.

As John King is being taken to the carpet for his disappointing ratings in the 7 p.m. slot, CNN’s leadership is considering Soledad O’Brien as his replacement. Sure, Soledad isn’t everyone’s first pick, but she’s professional, talented and quite intelligent. She deserves to have a shot. All the while, I’d be remiss not to mention my respected friend Roland Martin, and other talented CNN personalities, like Richelle Carey, Don Lemmon, TJ Holmes, and Tony Harris (who just left for Al Jazeera English).

Click to read.

Why Would Republican Leaders Put President Obama’s Face on a Chimp?


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World 

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, the Republican Party does it again. Orange County Republican Committee member Marilyn Davenport is in hot water after distributing an email that features President Obama as the child of a family of chimpanzees.  In the email, which was widely-distributed, the long-standing committee member sent out the picture with the caption, “Now you know why – No birth certificate!”

County GOP Chairman Scott Baugh has called for Davenport’s resignation, saying that the picture was "dripping with racism and is in very poor taste." He also referred the matter to the GOP Ethics Committee.  But in spite of the backlash from many of her fellow Republicans, there are some in the leadership who are standing firm with Davenport.

Ms. Davenport, however, seems to think that the email has nothing to do with racism.  She described the email as a “joke” and wanted to find out who leaked the email, writing “Anyone brave enough to come forward?”  She also had this to say when contacted by reporters:

Click to read more.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Luke from 2 Live Crew Running for Miami Mayor

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black World – Scholarship in Action 

“Uncle Luke” from 2 Live Crew has decided to become the mayor of Miami.  At least he’s going to try.  Luke, who is now 50 years old, claims that the run is a serious one, and not some kind of joke.

"My major hurdle is people taking me seriously, a lot of people think this is a joke," said Uncle Luke. "I call it a banana republic and I’m serious about it. You look at the commission and they make their own rules as they go, regardless of what the county attorney says, they make their own rules, just do what they want. They have no respect for the people."

Do I consider the campaign to be a joke?  Well, I guess it depends on how Luke goes about trying to become mayor.  Of course he probably won’t win the election, so perhaps my personal speculation is moot.  But I have to at least give Luke credit for trying to become involved in his community.  Luke interviewed me for his radio show about a year ago, and I’ll admit that the show was not a serious one.  However, I could sense that beneath the wild, raunchy, comedic demeanor lies a man with a keen understanding of the world around him.


Click to read.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Dr. Boyce: Officer Shoots Black Man, then Gets Award for It


Football Player Shot_3271980.jpg

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University – Scholarship in Action

The Pleasantville Police Department in New York upset the African American community by giving an Officer of the Year Award to the policeman who shot a young black college student in a racially-volatile incident.  Danroy “DJ” Henry was shot by officer Aaron Hess last year at a night club under questionable circumstances.

“The (Pleasantville Police Benevolent Association’s) Award is an expression of support for the dignified and professional manner in which Officer Hess has conducted himself throughout this ordeal,” wrote President Matthew Listwan in a statement.

Hess shot into Henry’s car on October 17 after the officer inexplicably landed on the young man’s hood.  Henry, who was 20 years old on the night he died, is accused by officers of being drunk behind the wheel and speeding away without stopping according to the officers’ instructions.  The family claims that Henry was following orders to drive away when Officer Hess jumped in front of the car.  Henry’s family attorney, Michael Sussman, says that firing at a moving vehicle and jumping in front of it are violations of state law and department rules.

Click to read.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What to Make of the Obama/West/Sharpton Divide in Black Leadership? Dr. Wilmer Leon Explain


Quick note from Dr. Boyce:  After watching the recent blow up between Dr. Cornel West and Rev. Al Sharpton over the Obama presidency, I felt it important to bring some knowledge and common sense to the discussion.  So, I reached out to Dr. Wilmer Leon, who is one of the most respected experts in black politics and political science in the country.  Dr. Leon teaches at Howard University and is also the host of “Inside the Issues with Wilmer Leon” on Sirius 820/XM 169, “The Power.”

Read more »

Dr. Boyce: The House Passes Obama’s Budget Deal- What’s Next?

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Your Black WorldScholarship in Action 

The United States House of Representatives passed a budget deal that was reached between Democrats and Republicans.  The deal helped legislators to avert a pending government shutdown that was bound to occur if an agreement had not been reached.  House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid worked with President Obama to slice $38 Billion from the federal budget over the next six months.

The final vote on the deal was 260 – 167.  Republicans were most favorable toward the deal, providing 179 votes.  Only 81 Democrats supported the measure.   Now, the bill is set to head to the Senate, where it is predicted that it will pass and then be sent to the White House for President Obama’s signature.


Click to read.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

National Association of Black Journalists Splits from UNITY

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) has apparently had enough. The group announced recently that it is splitting off from UNITY, an organization designed to bring together groups of minority journalists. The NABJ has cited the financial decisions of UNITY as the primary reason for the departure.

"NABJ board members concluded that as a business model, UNITY no longer is the most financially prudent for NABJ and its membership,” according to a statement released by the NABJ.


Click to read.

Tavis Smiley Getting Replaced by Juan Williams in Racial Healing Forum?


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University – Scholarship in Action 

For all of those who were once concerned about Tavis Smiley ending his much-respected State of the Black Union gathering every year, you no longer have any reason to worry: “The great” Juan Williams from Fox News is now going to take his place.

Well, Juan isn’t exactly replicating the State of the Black Union. Actually, he is going to be one of two moderators for the State of Race Symposium being sponsored by the Aspen Institute. According to Charlie Firestone, Executive Director of the Community and Society Program at the institute, the appointment of Williams to the post was nothing short of a perfect “basketball bounce pass.”


Click to read.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Study: Weaves, Braids Cause Baldness in Black Women


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University – Scholarship in Action 

Over one-fourth of 326 black women to participate in a study on hair loss were found to have lost hair on the top of their scalp. Additionally, 59 percent of the study’s participants showed signs of central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia, otherwise known as CCCA. CCCA is a form of baldness that starts at the crown of the head and causes scarring.

For years, many people thought that alopecia was caused by hot combs. Actually, it is caused by braids, weaves and other hairstyles. According to the study, it was determined that having these hairstyles for long periods of time leads to the creation of pus-filled bumps. According to Angela Kyei, M.D., the lead researcher in the study, the bumps can “develop bacteria,” causing scarring.


Click to read.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Dr. Boyce: Glenn Beck Booted Off Fox News

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University – Scholarship in Action 

I admit feeling a bit of glee upon hearing that Fox News is going to part ways with Glenn Beck. After watching his ratings decline, the network decided that it’s best that Beck take his chalk board elsewhere and find something new to do with his time. The departure is likely good for America, for Beck became one of the most divisive figures in the country.

What can’t be overlooked in Beck’s break from Fox is the fact that the decision was likely a financial one. Fox was losing millions when advertisers decided to boycott Beck’s show, largely because they didn’t want their products to be affiliated with a man with such extremist viewpoints. According to, Beck has lost 300 advertisers, largely because of comments he has made about President Obama having a hatred of white people. Remarks like this one, along with other conspiracy theories Beck threw at the nation every afternoon, likely led to his demise.

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Sunday, April 3, 2011

Malcolm, Manning and Black Men: The Brilliance of the Dearly Departed

by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse University – Scholarship in Action 

The death of the great Manning Marable at Columbia University was hard for me. At the young age of 60, Professor Marable took his rightful place with the legends of the black history, ending an amazing life and remarkable career. Professor Marable passed as one of the great black scholars of our time, and had the vision to expand the walls of his classroom to include millions of black and brown people across the world.


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Dr. Boyce: Giving Jalen Rose Another Chance


by Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse UniversityScholarship in Action 

Former NBA player and Fab Five member Jalen Rose was suspended indefinitely by ESPN after reports surfaced that Rose had been arrested for drunk driving. According to ESPN, Rose was being sent to the bench for not reporting the incident to the network. Rose allegedly failed a blood-alcohol test after his truck crashed in Bloomfield, Michigan on March 11. The incident didn’t get to ESPN until a Detroit station contacted the network to get more details for their own story.

"Jalen has accepted full responsibility for his actions. Both parties are taking this very seriously, and as a result, we've agreed that he will not be on our air while he addresses this situation,” ESPN spokesman Josh Krulewitz said in an e-mail to USA Today.

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