Chicago Sun-Times
Discussions across the racial divide

January 2007 Archives

January 25, 2007
BY MARY MITCHELL Sun-Times Columnist

Sometimes you've got to believe in signs and wonders. Although there are too few African-American coaches in the NFL, Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy are going to the Super Bowl.

After being dissed on "American Idol," South Sider Jennifer Hudson wins a Golden Globe Award and is now up for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.

After being trounced in his first race for a seat in Washington, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama is being taken seriously as a candidate for the presidency.

And all of this good news is happening just in time for Black History Month.

Whenever too many good things happened at one time, my mother used to say that she hoped the world wasn't about to end.

Now I know that those periods of good favor were actually the payoff for a lot of hard work.

January 18, 2007

BY MARY MITCHELL Sun-Times Columnist

If he runs, he just might win.

Really, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama has a good chance of becoming the first nonwhite male to win the presidency. Despite his lack of experience, it is his moment.

But more than that, there are plenty of politically engaged baby boomers who are tired of waiting to see the American Dream realized.

Yes, we've made some progress on bridging the racial gap. But it hasn't been enough.

In many urban areas, the public schools have been re-segregated, neighborhoods are starkly divided by ethnicity and race, and the impoverished are hidden from view.

Besides being immensely gifted, Obama has intimate knowledge of the best and worst of black and white relationships and our often-intolerant behavior toward each other.

As the world knows by now, U.S. Senator Barack Obama announced Monday that he has filed the necessary papers to set up an exploratory committee on running for president.

Obviously, no one is surprised.

But people are already raising questions about whether or not Americans are ready to vote for a non-White male who has a real chance at winning the presidency.

That doesn't shock me. Here's what does: Question are also being raised about Obama's support in the black community.

How many of you shuddered when you read Earline Wasp's quote that appeared in a Sun-Times article, "Murder on the Move" that ran in Wednesday's paper:

"I am on my way. I am fittin' to move," said Wasp, who grew up in Altgeld and is raising a 10-year-old son there. "To me it's like the devil's playground. It's where everybody come and do they dirt. I want to get my son out of here."

From: BlackPlanet.com survey (released on Dec. 12, 2006):

70% of respondents say racial profiling is as prevalent as 20 years ago;

74% have been victims of racial profiling in past year;

76% believe the shooting of Sean Bell in Queens was racially motivated;

New York and Los Angeles cited as cities with worst police brutality problems.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from January 2007 listed from newest to oldest.

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