Banks, Economy, poverty, Social Problems

Opinion: Changing Rules to Help Bankers and Hurt Poor Neighborhoods. The Community Reinvestment Act needs a renovation. The Trump administration instead is proposing a partial demolition. By The Editorial Board. The editorial board is a group of opinion journalists whose views are informed by expertise, research, debate and certain longstanding values. It is separate from the newsroom. Jan. 10, 2020

Banks don’t like lending in lower-income neighborhoods, even as they profit from deposits taken from those same communities. Since 1977, the Community Reinvestment Act has forced the issue, requiring banks to provide mortgages, small-business loans and other services in all areas where they operate. The current crop of federal banking regulators, picked by President Trump, is now proposing to let banks pump less money into lower-income communities, and even to claim credit for lending that does not benefit those communities. One egregious example: Banks could count loans for improvements to stadiums that happen to sit in poor neighborhoods. Yes, you read that right: Under the proposal, the banks that financed the new sound system at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore could claim credit for investing in the community.

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African-Americans, criminal justice, Police, Social Problems

Opinion: The Injustice of This Moment Is Not an ‘Aberration.’ From mass incarceration to mass deportation, our nation remains in deep denial. By Michelle Alexander Opinion Columnist Jan. 17, 2020. Ten years have passed since my book, “The New Jim Crow,” was published. I wrote it to challenge our nation to reckon with the recurring cycles of racial reform, retrenchment and rebirth of caste-like systems that have defined our racial history since slavery. It has been an astonishing decade. Everything and nothing has changed.

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Economy, Gender, Social Problems, Stratification

Women’s Gains in the Work Force Conceal a Problem Jobs traditionally viewed as female still don’t pay well, and still don’t appeal to men. Fixing one of these things would fix the other. By Claire Cain Miller Jan. 21, 2020 American women have just achieved a significant milestone: They hold more payroll jobs than men. But this isn’t entirely good news for workers, whether they’re men or women.

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African-Americans, Race, Social Problems, Stratification

Opinion: Black People’s Land Was Stolen

Any discussion of reparations must include how this happened, who did it, and the laws, policies and practices that allowed it.

By Andrew W. Kahrl

Dr. Kahrl is an associate professor of history and African-American studies at the University of Virginia.

June 20, 2019

A House Judiciary subcommittee on Wednesday held the first hearing in over a decade on the issue of reparations for black Americans. The hearing took place, fittingly, on the Juneteenth holiday, commemorating the announcement of the end of slavery in the United States, and five years after the writer Ta-Nehisi Coates, who testified, reignited the debate with his 2014 essay “The Case for Reparations.” Once a fringe topic, reparations has emerged as an issue in the 2020 presidential campaign, with several leading candidates for the Democratic nomination expressing support for various measures to atone for America’s racist past.

Thanks to Mr. Coates and others, today’s movement for reparations places as much emphasis on the racist public policies of the 20th century, which denied black Americans opportunities to build wealth and left them vulnerable to all manner of economic exploitation, as it does on the crimes of slavery.

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Social Problems, Stratification

Opinion: Google Should Google the Definition of ‘Employee’

Tech companies are goosing profits by relying on contract labor, taking advantage of lax labor laws.

By The Editorial Board

The editorial board represents the opinions of the board, its editor and the publisher. It is separate from the newsroom and the Op-Ed section.

May 29, 2019

For many companies, hiring full-time employees has become a last resort, reserved for tasks that cannot be automated or outsourced or handed to an independent contractor. The goal is to keep the number of full-time employees as small as possible — and a key reason is that the government requires companies to take care of employees. Companies, in other words, are seeking to minimize the number of workers who must be treated fairly.

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