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Black Middle Class

October 18, 1993 | ROBERT KOEHLER
The legacy of the civil rights movement and the laws that came in its wake is a complicated mosaic of triumphs--an explosion of black prosperity--and miseries--the welfare system and a solidified underclass. But one element of that mosaic--black communities sticking together--is surely not cause for either hand-clapping or hand-wringing.
August 15, 2007 | Erin Aubry Kaplan, Erin Aubry Kaplan is a contributing editor to Opinion.
Everybody figured it would come to this. After years of losing life a bit at a time, King-Drew Medical Center is all but gone (its final name, King-Harbor, was a capitulation, a bold-sounding hybrid that suggested change but signified defeat). Many groups share the blame for its oblivion, a fact that's been repeated so many times now, it almost sounds like a cop-out. So let's review. As operator of the hospital, Los Angeles County has the lion's share of accountability.
February 27, 2004 | Ellen Barry, Times Staff Writer
When she first turned down the road into Sandstone Estates, with its velour-soft swells of lawn, Italianate fountains and circular driveways, Diana Clarkson asked the question that newcomers always ask: Are these really all owned by black people? Clarkson, 41, had lived in suburbs most of her life. One thing all those communities had in common -- other than good public schools and high-end grocery stores -- was that very few black families lived there.
October 15, 1990 | ICE CUBE, a Compton rap artist whose controversial debut album "AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted," recently went platinum, commented on what he described as the nation's callousness toward bloodshed in African-American communities. The rapper, whose graphic lyrics offer still shots of the grim side of American life, told The Times: and
(White) America doesn't want to do anything about the violence because they could give less than a ----, as long as we keep it in South-Central (Los Angeles) or stay south of Pico (Boulevard). Don't bring it to Westwood. The black middle-class is numb to it because they are busy trying to cross over to the white middle-class. You've got a brother who has spent all of his life trying to get out of the ghetto, and when he does, he doesn't look back. He tries to rub elbows.
July 5, 1997
In the article "ReDiggin' the Scene" (June 30), Elaine Dutka fails to mention several noteworthy blaxploitation films of the '70s. How about "Cleopatra Jones" and its sequel, "Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold," both featuring the beautiful Amazon-looking Tamara Dobson? I saw both of those films as an adolescent and have forgotten neither. Here, you had a black single woman playing a government agent and helping her own people in the balance. Is there such a great role for a black woman today?
June 1, 1994
Why doesn't Karen Grigsby Bates ("Why I Envy South Africa," Commentary, May 18) simply move to South Africa? Why does The Times continue to print race-baiting whiners like her and never print anything from African Americans who actually have something good to say about America? She indicts, by inference, the white middle class for the poor state of hospitals, schools, recreation facilities and markets in black neighborhoods. Where is the responsibility of the black middle class in all this?
December 26, 2007 | ERIN AUBRY KAPLAN, Erin Aubry Kaplan is a contributing editor to Opinion.
It's almost a cliche that L.A.'s diversity is its strength. But another cliche (one, like most, grounded in a certain truth) is that L.A. lives like a small town, or a bunch of small towns, divvied up by color and class. Fact is, we've always preferred our diversity geographically contained and climate-controlled; a white friend of mine once confessed that to most of her friends, "Diversity means having good restaurants." So let's mix it up.
September 25, 2005
For a report on the new South Africa, Scott Kraft devotes only one three-sentence paragraph to education ("After the Fire," Sept. 11). South Africa's first democratic election in 1994 led to one of the most progressive constitutions in the free world. It made educational equity a major national priority. Yet despite the creation of a race-blind state educational system and the elevation of basic education to a fundamental right, South Africa has made painfully little progress toward this vital goal.
The Beverly Hills-Hollywood branch of the NAACP announced a roster of winners of its annual Image Awards today that appears to honor America's ever-growing black middle-class. Oprah Winfrey, queen of the afternoon talk shows, was named the NAACP's "entertainer of the year." Winfrey, along with Sammy Davis Jr., Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis, was also named to the Image Awards Hall of Fame.
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