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Brooklyn Nets owners will use character, not credit scores, for $2.5 million loan program that helps Black businesses

 

Brooklyn Nets owners Joe Tsai and Clara Wu Tsai are taking the next steps to distribute money from a $50 million commitment to help minority communities.

The sports owners created a $2.5 million loan program that targets Black-owned businesses impacted by Covid-19. The money derives from the Tsai foundation’s Social Justice Fund, which was established last year, and aims to combat economic inequality in Black communities.

 

The new loans are part of the “EXCELerate” program and catered to owners with credit scores 620 or below. But though applicants will not be judged on the scores, business owners need to be “character-based” eligible. Hence, they’ll need to have good references to secure their loan.

There are two loan types. The “rapid recovery” loan offers immediate funds up to $15,000 and no interest attached. These loans are for businesses that stayed open during the pandemic but need...

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Civil rights leaders announce another March on Washington after voting rights bill fails in Senate

By Nicquel Terry Ellis

(CNN) A group of civil rights organizations will host another March on Washington in August to demand that Congress pass sweeping voting rights legislation and that state lawmakers halt efforts to enact bills that restrict voting access.

The announcement of the march comes one day after Senate Republicans blocked the For the People Act -- a signature voting and election bill that Democrats had pitched to counter state-level efforts. Republicans denounced the bill as a partisan power grab and a federal overreach into state voting and election systems.
The march, set for Aug. 28 with the theme "March On for Voting Rights," will mark the 58th anniversary of the historic March on Washington where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech. Marches are set to be held in Washington DC, Atlanta, Miami, Phoenix and Houston.
 
Martin Luther King III, the eldest son of Martin Luther King Jr., will lead the...
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Civil Rights Groups Demand Congress Pass Federal Marijuana Legalization Bill This Month

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A coalition of major advocacy groups including the ACLU and NAACP is urging congressional leaders to hold a vote on a House bill to federally legalize marijuana by the end of this month.

In a letter sent to House leadership on Friday, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights (LCCHR)—a coalition that represents more than 220 national organizations—said that it’s imperative to promptly pass the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act, which cleared the chamber last year and was recently refiled.

Since the House approved the legislation last year, “the circumstances of this past year have made the War on Drugs even more untenable and amplified the voices of those demanding transformation in our criminal-legal system,” the groups wrote.

“In the face of a growing national dialogue on discriminatory law enforcement practices, including the disproportionate policing of drug use in...

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Our New Postracial Myth

By Ibram X. Kendi

The signposts of racism are staring back at us in big, bold racial inequities. But some Americans are ignoring the signposts, walking on by racial inequity, riding on by the evidence, and proclaiming their belief with religious fervor. “America is not a racist country,” Senator Tim Scott said in April.

Black babies die at twice the rate of white babies. Roughly a fifth of Native Americans and Latino Americans are medically uninsured, almost triple the rate of white Americans and Asian Americans (7.8 and 7.2 percent, respectively). Native people (24.2 percent) are nearly three times as likely as white people (9 percent) to be impoverished. The life expectancy of Black Americans (74.5 years) is much lower than that of white Americans (78.6 years). White Americans account for 77 percent of the voting members of the 117th Congress, even though they represent 60 percent of the U.S....

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Cresco Labs Launches Social Justice Campaign on 50th Anniversary of War on Drugs

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, on the 50th anniversary of when America started its longest war—the War on Drugs—Cresco Labs (CSE:CL) (OTCQX:CRLBF) (“Cresco” or “the Company”), a vertically integrated multistate operator and the number one U.S. wholesaler of branded cannabis products, announced the launch of a summer-long social justice campaign supported by its Sunnyside retail brand and flagship cannabis brand, Cresco. Through community expungement events, employee volunteerism, a film documenting the impact of unjust prosecution, and financial contributions from the Company and our third-party vendors, the “Summer of Social Justice” campaign aims to influence reform to help shape a future cannabis industry with limitless opportunities for everyone. The campaign will amplify the ongoing restorative justice, community business incubator and education and workforce development programming facilitated by the...

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An altar call for action on racial justice at CTSA convention

racial justice theology Jun 16, 2021

Noting that she was not only dissatisfied but angry with Catholic theology, M. Shawn Copeland put out an "altar call" for action on issues of inclusion and racial justice on the part of fellow theologians at the Catholic Theological Society of America's virtual conference.

"What kind of Catholic theologians are we, if even the mildest forms of advocacy for racial justice are considered optional in following Jesus?" asked Copeland, professor emerita at Boston College.

"As the world's largest professional association of Catholic scholars, have we done enough to grapple with the systemic white racism that permeates our nation, our church, our parishes, our colleges and universities and seminaries? I think not," she said. "We must do something now!"

Copeland was part of a June 11 panel that examined the 75-year history of the association, which met virtually June 10-13.

She noted that after a year that included the coronavirus pandemic, which disproportionately hit communities of color,...

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Federal judge rules California’s ban on assault weapons is unconstitutional

Federal District Court Judge Roger Benitez ruled on June 4 that California’s Assault Weapons Control Act of 1989, which banned all assault weapons in California, violates the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and unlawfully restricts the kinds of firearms protected under previous U.S. Supreme Court rulings. He wrote, “Like the Swiss Army Knife, the popular AR-15 rifle is a perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment. Good for both home and battle, the AR-15 is the kind of versatile gun that lies at the intersection of the kinds of firearms protected under District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008) and United States v. Miller, 307 U.S. 174 (1939). Yet, the State of California makes it a crime to have an AR-15 type rifle. Therefore, this Court declares the California statutes to be unconstitutional.”

The Roberti-Roos Assault Weapons Control Act of 1989 was California’s first assault weapons act. It...

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The Complete List of Marxist, Un-American, Anti-White Things (According to White People)

critical race theory Jun 16, 2021

In 1944, William Terry Couch, a “fair-minded, progressive Southerner,” who served as the director of the University of North Carolina Press, along with white “racial liberal” sociologist Guy Johnson, had an idea for a book outlining the concerns of Black America. He enlisted Rayford Logan, a brilliant Howard University history professor, to compile a series of essays called What the Negro WantsThe list of contributors featured the who’s who of Black thinkers, including poet Langston HughesW.E.B Du Bois—one of the founders of modern sociology—and labor organizer A. Philip Randolph, who forced the U.S. military to desegregate and later went on to organize a little event called the March on Washington.

When the white liberals saw the initial draft of essays, they thought it was outrageous. The list of demands was insane. They had written about full equality, desegregation and even civil rights! There...

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Senate approves bill to make Juneteenth a federal holiday

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would make Juneteenth, or June 19th, a federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.

The bill would lead to Juneteenth becoming the 12th federal holiday. It is expected to easily pass the House, which would send it to President Joe Biden for his signature.

Juneteenth commemorates when the last enslaved African Americans learned they were free. Confederate soldiers surrendered in April 1865, but word didn’t reach the last enslaved Black people until June 19, when Union soldiers brought the news of freedom to Galveston, Texas. That was also about two years after the Emancipation Proclamation.

“Making Juneteenth a federal holiday is a major step forward to recognize the wrongs of the past,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. “But we must continue to work to ensure equal justice and fulfill the promise of the Emancipation Proclamation and our Constitution.”...

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The Right’s War on History and Truth

History is contested because the telling of history is powerful.

President Joe Biden brought eloquent leadership to a national commemoration of the 100th anniversary of a massacre in Tulsa, Okla., this month. In 1921, hundreds of Black men, women, and children were murdered, and a thriving community was destroyed in a singular racialized mass murder.

These murders took place as the Ku Klux Klan was resurgent, energized by the vehemently racist 1915 film Birth of a Nation, which promoted the false pro-Confederacy “Lost Cause” version of the history of slavery and the Civil War.

Until recent years, the Tulsa massacre had been largely hidden from history. The truth was systematically covered up, deliberately erased from our collective memory, by public officials, news media, and textbooks.

It would be tempting to think that a cover-up of this magnitude could never happen today. But we may be on the verge of an even greater historical cover-up. Republican legislators...

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