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raceAhead: Discrimination at Harvard, Girl Scouts Celebrate Eid, 5 Breaking News Haikus

The Campus of Harvard UniversityThe Campus of Harvard University
The campus of Harvard Business School and Harvard University, July 26, 2016 in Boston, Massachusetts.Brooks Kraft Getty Images

Your week in review, in haiku.



Even a fish would

stay out of trouble if it

kept its own mouth shut.



The new trail of tears:

A biblical tragedy.

On that, we agree.



“Do not interrupt

those climbing to greatest heights.”

-Trash Panda proverb



“Hey, the Foundation

called.” Tiffany sips tea. “That’s

none of my business.”



A joyous day to

feast and remember all good

deeds: Eid Mubarak


Wishing you a joyous and memorable weekend.

On Point

A new court filing alleges Harvard discriminates against Asian-American applicantsAn analysis of more than 160,000 records showed that Harvard consistently rated Asian-American applicants lower than all other races on personality traits like courage, kindness and likeability. The findings were filed today in federal court in Boston, as part of an ongoing action against the university. Students for Fair Admissions, which represents various Asian-American students in the complaint, says that despite high test scores, students’ personality ratings consistently dampened their chances of admission. “Harvard today engages in the same kind of discrimination and stereotyping that it used to justify quotas on Jewish applicants in the 1920s and 1930s,” the group said in the court document.New York Times

Muslim Girl Scouts in Virginia are helping people celebrate Eid in a unique way
Troop 4585, a group of fifth-graders from Sterling, Va., have created a series of Eid-themed holiday cards to help others celebrate the end of Ramadan. When they shared their work on Facebook, they were surprised by a sudden influx of more than 600 orders. The money raised is going to charity and to fund future projects. In addition to getting a sudden master class in entrepreneurship, the girls are earning their photography badges. “All these girls are Muslim, so we try to incorporate Islam as much as we can. All other activities are the same,” says troop leader Ema Chohan.
Voice of America

University of Chicago to stop requiring standardized test scores, offers free tuition for low-income students
The University of Chicago is now part of a growing number of universities to no longer require prospective students to submit SAT and ACT scores as part of the admissions process, citing concerns that the tests unfairly burden low-income, first-generation, and certain minority students. They will also allow students to submit video introductions and non-traditional materials. “We wanted to really take a look at all our requirements and make sure they were fair to every group, that everybody, anybody could aspire to a place like UChicago,” says the dean of admissions. The school is also announcing free tuition for families making less than $125,000 and four-year scholarships for first-generation students.
Chicago Tribune

Target is forced to recall ‘Baby Daddy’ father’s day cards after outcry
Takeisha Saunders was appalled to discover that the only Father’s Day cards that featured black families in her local Rockwell, Texas, Target read “Baby Daddy.” No black husband cards. No “my dad’s a hero” cards. No “world’s greatest dad” cards. It prompted an immediate outcry when Saunders posted it online, forcing Target to pull the cards and apologize. Patrice Molnar, a spokeswoman for American Greetings, said they meant no offense. “In this instance, this particular card was created for, and addressed to, a loving husband — which the inside copy makes clear,” she told ABC News. “However, we now see that the front page, taken out of context, can communicate an unintentional meaning that we are strongly against perpetuating and is not consistent with our company purpose and values.” <Thinking face emoji goes here.>
ABC News

The Woke Leader

An extraordinary film of George Washington Carver has been found
The Motion Picture Preservation Lab of the National Archive found a lost treasure in a recent acquisition, rare amateur film footage of the legendary inventor at home and in his office at the then Tuskegee Institute. The film, which has a home video vibe, shows him with family, reading correspondence, performing experiments, working in the peanut fields, holding a mound of red Alabama clay. The tender moments with Dr. Carver – he knits with his wife! – are impossibly poignant. The beautifully preserved color footage was shot in 1937 by an African-American surgeon from Kalamazoo, Michigan, and opens a window into a corner of black life that was elegant, optimistic and committed to excellence. There’s even footage of a Tuskegee football game complete with band and majorettes.
Unwritten Record Blog

There is a gay glass ceiling in the U.K.
In the largest such study to date, an analysis of data from U.K. households show that gay employees are significantly less likely to be promoted to upper management positions than their similarly credentialed straight peers. While gay men do fine on lower rungs of management, often out-pacing and out-earning straight men, they’re not making it to high-status leadership positions. And gay women were less likely to hold a leadership job, but more likely to be in a position of managing others. The discrimination was compounded by race. “Gay men of color, it was clear, are even less likely to hold a high-status managerial post than white gay men.”

Revisiting the early work of Ta-Nehisi Coates
I often forget that his first book was not the award-winning Between The World and Me, but The Beautiful Struggle: A Father Two Sons and An Unlikely Road to Manhood. Coates is the son of a complicated man, a Vietnam veteran, a Black Panther who carried a gun, a warrior for redemption in crack-afflicted Baltimore, and inspirational figure at Howard University, who had seven children with four different women. Coates, once a brilliant underachiever, used his first book to hone the craft of putting the lives of black folks into context. On the subject of black men and violence, he said in a 2008 interview:“People don’t humanize these folks. They’re numbers to them… This is why we have art. This is why people need to read novels. This is why people need to read history and great detailed journalism.”
Book Slut


Oh soul, you worry too much. You have seen your own strength. You have seen your own beauty. You have seen your golden wings. Of anything less, why do you worry? You are in truth the soul, of the soul, of the soul.