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OP-ED: Let’s celebrate Women History Month by adjusting Lady Justice’s Blindfold

NNPA NEWSWIRE — President Biden has upheld his pledge and has nominated the highly qualified and well-respected Ketanji Brown Jackson. If confirmed, she will be a tremendous addition to the Supreme Court and bring a different life experience to the bench than has ever been there. It is not just the Supreme Court that is struggling to reflect the diversity of our country. Of the current 1,395 federal judges, only 8 percent are women of color, and just 4 percent are Black women. In fact, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, which represents states with a combined Black population of 20 percent, has no women of color.
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By Congressman James E. Clyburn (D-SC), House Majority Whip

Lady Justice is an iconic symbol of the American judicial system. In one hand, she holds scales to represent that both sides will receive a balanced hearing, and, in the other, she holds a sword to represent the power of justice. She also wears a blindfold to indicate that justice is blind and, therefore, fair. However, that fairness is not reflected in the makeup of our courts. In fact, one might say Lady Justice’s blindfold prevents her from seeing the imbalance on current federal benches.

March, the month we celebrate women’s history, I believe is an appropriate time to take a good look at the status of women in our judicial system. We all know that representation matters, and the federal judiciary has been sorely lacking on this front.

During the 2020 Presidential campaign, I often heard expressions of displeasure that there had never been a Black woman on the U.S. Supreme Court, nor had one ever been seriously considered. That is why I believed it to be appropriate and timely that then-candidate Joe Biden pledge during the South Carolina primary that, if given the opportunity, he would nominate a Black woman to the highest court in the land. He made the pledge during the South Carolina presidential debate and went on to win the state’s primary by almost 30 points gaining the momentum that took him to the White House. His victory was due in large part to the support of Black women.

President Biden has upheld his pledge and has nominated the highly qualified and well-respected Ketanji Brown Jackson. If confirmed, she will be a tremendous addition to the Supreme Court and bring a different life experience to the bench than has ever been there. It is not just the Supreme Court that is struggling to reflect the diversity of our country. Of the current 1,395 federal judges, only 8 percent are women of color, and just 4 percent are Black women. In fact, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, which represents states with a combined Black population of 20 percent, has no women of color.

This issue is not new to me. When I was elected Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus 24 years ago, I declared it my mission to integrate that Court and went toe-to-toe with North Carolina Senator and well-known segregationist, Jesse Helms. Senator Helms had blocked earlier attempts by President Clinton to integrate that Circuit and even attempted to reduce its size to get rid of the two vacancies.

The battle was public and not pretty. An editorial writer from my hometown newspaper declared that it was a dispute I could not win. But I developed a scenario that convinced President Clinton to make a recess appointment and Judge Roger Gregory of Virginia became the first Black person on the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in December 2000. Today Judge Gregory serves as the Chief Judge on that court.

President Biden has made it his mission to create even greater diversity on the federal bench, especially for women. In his first year in office, women of color have represented more than 40 percent of President Biden’s federal judicial nominees. As of January 2022, the Senate has confirmed 22 of his minority women appointees to the federal bench, 7 minority men, 11 white women and 2 white men. That is a significant effort toward smashing a larger hole in the glass ceiling of the federal judiciary.

You might ask: when will there be enough women of color on the federal bench? I will borrow my answer from a famous response offered by the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to a similar question – with a slight modification. She said at Georgetown Law School in 2015, “I’m sometimes asked, ‘When will there be enough?’ and my answer is, ‘When there are nine.’ People are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”

I think Justice Ginsburg made an appropriate observation.

The post OP-ED: Let’s celebrate Women History Month by adjusting Lady Justice’s Blindfold first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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2020 Census Called ‘Worse Undercount’ in Decades as Bureau Misses Millions of Blacks and Hispanics

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The bureau estimated that the 2020 census incorrectly counted 18.8 million residents, double-counting some, wrongly including others, and missing others entirely, even as it came extremely close to reaching an accurate count of the overall population.
The post 2020 Census Called ‘Worse Undercount’ in Decades as Bureau Misses Millions of Blacks and Hispanics first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

According to many experts, the COVID-19 pandemic and an administration that displayed a complete disregard for ensuring accuracy led to a consequential undercount in the number of Black, Hispanic, and Native American residents during the 2020 U.S. Census.

Further, Census officials admit that they overcounted white and Asian residents.

The bureau reported the overall population as 323.2 million.

“The undercounting of Black, Latino, Indigenous and other communities of color rob us of the opportunity to be the directors of our fate, reducing our representation and limiting our power while depriving policymakers of the information they need to make informed decisions about where the next hospital will be built or where the next school should be located,” said Damon Hewitt, the president and executive director of the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

“In addition, the undercount exacerbates underfunding of our communities because Census data is used as the basis for hundreds of billions of dollars of federal, state, and local appropriations each year,” Hewitt said.

The Census population count determines how many representatives each state has in Congress for the next decade.

It also decides how much federal funding communities receive for roads, schools, housing, and social programs. Hundreds of billions of dollars are at stake each time the census occurs.

Robert L. Santos, the bureau’s director, displayed little regard for the undercount of minorities. He said the 2020 results were consistent with recent censuses.

“This is notable, given the unprecedented challenges of 2020,” Santos said in a statement. “But the results also include some limitations — the 2020 census undercounted many of the same population groups we have historically undercounted, and it overcounted others.”

“We remain proud of the job we accomplished in the face of immense challenges,” Mr. Santos said. “And we are ready to work with the stakeholders and the public to leverage this enormously valuable resource fully.”

Terri Ann Lowenthal, a leading expert on the census and consultant to governments and others with a stake in the count, told the New York Times that the results were “troubling but not entirely surprising.”

“Overall, the results are less accurate than in 2010,” she said.

The bureau estimated that the 2020 census incorrectly counted 18.8 million residents, double-counting some, wrongly including others, and missing others entirely, even as it came extremely close to reaching an accurate count of the overall population.

The Times reported that the “estimates released on Thursday — in essence, a statistical adjustment of totals made public last year — are based on an examination of federal records and an extensive survey in which the bureau interviewed residents in some 10,000 census blocks — the smallest unit used in census tabulations. Bureau experts then compared their answers to the actual census results for those blocks.”

Officials claimed that the survey enabled the bureau to estimate how many residents it missed entirely in the 2020 count, how many people were counted twice, and how many people — such as deceased persons or short-term visitors to the United States — were counted mistakenly.

Officials began the count after the pandemic shut down operations in April 2020. After other starts and stops, the Trump administration pressured census takers by inexplicably moving up the deadline to finish the count.

Trump also attempted to add a citizenship question to the census, further muddying attempts at an accurate count.

Many experts complained that more time was required and called the count unreliable. Some called on then-incoming President Joe Biden to order a recount.

“This is the worse census undercount I’ve seen in my 30 years working on census issues,” Arturo Vargas, CEO of the National Association of Latino Elected Officials Education Fund, said during a news conference.

“I can’t even find the right word. I’m just upset about the extent of the undercount that has been confirmed by the post-enumeration survey,” Vargas said.

“This is a major step backward on this.”

The post 2020 Census Called ‘Worse Undercount’ in Decades as Bureau Misses Millions of Blacks and Hispanics first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package POV Test Drive

Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package POV Test Drive. My take on the 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan. Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package. Best look at 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD the exterior, interior, side, front, rear, wheels, engine under the hood and take a […]
The post Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package POV Test Drive first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package POV Test Drive. My take on the 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan. Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package. Best look at 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD the exterior, interior, side, front, rear, wheels, engine under the hood and take a ride behind the wheel. You don’t get a better walkaround review than this of the 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD.
2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package
2.5 L Turbo 4 Cylinder Engine
250 HP @ 310 lb-ft Torque (227 MPG w/Regular Fuel)
6 Speed Automatic Transmission w/Sport Mode
Exterior Color: Machine Gray Metallic
Interior Color: White
23 MPG City, 32 MPG Highway, 27 MPG Combined
MSRP: $34,710

Pros
* Very Spirited Acceleration in Sport Mode
* Supportive and Comfortable Drivers Seat
* Quality Materials Interior
* Easy To Use Infotainment System
* Sporty Ride and Handling

Cons
* Limited Legroom for 2nd Row Passengers

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Like us on and share https://www.facebook.com/autonetwork
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The post Walkaround 2022 Mazda3 2.5 Turbo AWD Sedan w/Premium Plus Package POV Test Drive first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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