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Jeff Chang
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Blog Entries by Jeff Chang

Fighting Chauvinism, Really? Ethnic Studies, Republican Politics and Arizona's Future

Posted May 13, 2010 | 15:04:18 (EST)

Tom Horne, Arizona superintendent of education, was reportedly offended that Dolores Huerta allegedly told Tucson High students that Republicans hated Latinos. So he made it his mission to erase history.

Horne got his way two days ago when Governor Jan "George Wallace" Brewer signed HB 2281, a bill that...

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The New Shape of the Culture War: Glenn Beck, Yosi Sergant, Van Jones, and Hip-Hop

Posted September 10, 2009 | 16:31:15 (EST)

(UPDATED 6:24 PST)

Are you mad yet? You should be. Glenn Beck has now taken down Yosi Sergant, the second hip-hop activist to be targeted in the Obama administration in a week.

Last night the 34-year old communications director at the National Endowment For The Arts...

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Notes On The Eve Of Day One

Posted January 20, 2009 | 01:27:28 (EST)

Barack Obama was born in Hawai'i only two years after my father's generation voted for statehood, and that small fact illustrates the deep emotional cross-currents I am caught in over his inauguration.

On November 4th, when the TV pundits called the election for Obama, my two sons danced around the...

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It's A New Day

Posted November 5, 2008 | 03:30:06 (EST)

Throughout the north side of Pittsburgh, one of the city's three major Black districts, they lined up before dawn, hundreds deep in the 47-degree weather as if they were waiting for history to be made. Even after the polling places opened into an instant crawl, they kept coming.

And...

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A Domestic Terrorist's Take On The Debates

Posted October 16, 2008 | 16:11:14 (EST)

With watery red eyes that had him looking as if he'd just smoked a bowl of medical marijuana, Senator John McCain might have made me feel sorry for him.

I'm far from a conservative, as far as the suburbs of Honolulu are from the streets of Brooklyn. But this year...

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Days Of Dancing For Dollars Long Gone

Posted September 24, 2008 | 07:56:25 (EST)

"The 90s may have spoiled us, b!"

That was the great Joan Morgan, in one of a million conversations this past weekend about the economy.

Things done changed since the Cristal-sipping days, back when artists routinely dropped a milli on their videos. But now all of...

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Marvin Gaye On The 2008 Elections: A Musical Interlude

Posted September 15, 2008 | 14:17:58 (EST)

In 1972, Marvin Gaye was coming off breakthrough success with What's Going On. He moved to Los Angeles and turned his attention to the 1972 presidential election, which pitted Richard Nixon against George McGovern.

Nixon was trying to solidify what's become known as the "Southern Strategy", using racially coded...

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The Battle Of Denver

Posted August 28, 2008 | 12:38:14 (EST)

Wednesday was the day that the party and its discontents decided to party.

At highly exclusive big-donor events, the Black Eyed Peas and Fergie rocked a prObama concert for the entertainment industry foundation, The Creative Coalition, while Kanye West headlined the One Campaign/RIAA event.

Rosario...

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Obama Comes Home

Posted August 9, 2008 | 15:21:50 (EST)

It was like almost any other day in a Honolulu waterfront park. Ka'au Crater Boys playing on the sound system. Kids throwing a football around. Tradewinds blowing savory smoke in from the barbecue pits at the far end of the parking lot, and the occasional light rain against a sunny...

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What Do Whites Want? Why The Papers Are Getting The Race Polls Wrong

Posted July 16, 2008 | 14:41:38 (EST)

So many race polls, so little insight.

Today's sober NY Times poll on the presidential election and race relations comes to the very same conclusions that the wacky Washington Post poll -- which turned into a game of "White People: So You Think You're...

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Muslims, Obama, And The Perils of Victory Ahead

Posted June 24, 2008 | 19:18:24 (EST)

Thoughts on a well-reported piece about the Obama campaign's apparent Islamophobia. The piece resonates with a number of things I've been writing about, right up through yesterday.

I was writing about communities of color expecting a certain kind of "change" in Obama's message, that is, a greater push...

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The Politics of Identity Politics

Posted June 23, 2008 | 18:15:29 (EST)

Last weekend's Washington Post/ABC poll of white and Black voters racial attitudes revealed, well, not much at all.

The headline was "3 in 10 Americans Admit To Racial Bias". According to this poll, when asked the useless question of whether one experiences "feelings of personal racial prejudice",...

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Idle Hands: Why The Candidates Must Focus On America's Youth

Posted June 10, 2008 | 23:16:01 (EST)

This summer could be the worst ever for teens looking for work, according to experts. Less than one in three youths may find summer jobs.

In recent years, the youth jobless rate has soared to record highs. In cities like Chicago, three in four teens, including seven...

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Obama, The New Majority, And The Race (Card) Ahead

Posted June 4, 2008 | 17:45:04 (EST)

Last night Barack Obama won the Democratic nomination with grace and poise, a history-making achievement that neither John McCain or Hillary Clinton could bring themselves to recognize.

One hundred thirty six years after Frederick Douglass became the first African American on a presidential ticket (as vice presidential candidate for...

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In Korea, Breaking & Beef, Hip-Hop & Free Trade

Posted May 29, 2008 | 22:03:32 (EST)

In the Ibis Hotel in Suwon, a suburb just south of Seoul, the lobby is alive with movement til the early hours of the morning.

Hundreds of b-boys and b-girls from hip-hop's global underground of floor-rockers are here. They are sleepless from hours of travel from Cape Town, South...

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Still Awaiting Justice In Jena

Posted May 27, 2008 | 02:03:29 (EST)

Eight months after 40,000 people converged on Jena, Louisiana, justice still awaits the six young men whose cases inspired one of the biggest civil rights marches in recent history.

This Friday, special judge Thomas Yeager will consider a motion made on behalf of the Jena 6 to remove Judge...

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Hillary And The Racist Gap

Posted May 14, 2008 | 12:23:17 (EST)

Hillary's argument that Obama can't reach white working-class voters makes perfect sense. It represents her true politics -- based in buzzkill pragmatism of the most cynical kind. Will we cater to the worst in our voters all the time? Yes we will!

Or...to paraphrase Amy Poehler-in-her-Hillary-banana-suit on SNL: "My...

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Waking Up From History

Posted February 22, 2008 | 13:29:00 (EST)

For 45 minutes last night, the debate was good for my household's collective fever. It said everyone agrees for once, all will be right with the world. Then Hillary repeated her ridiculous plagiarism charge, and I fell out of bed like Little Nemo. The dude from Slumberland, not the fish.

...
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The Ongoing Evolution Of Obama's "Post-Racial Politics"

Posted February 12, 2008 | 17:36:33 (EST)

Ginger Thompson, Jeff Zeleny, and Kitty Bennett write today about Obama and his staff's internal wrangling over the place of race in the campaign. They show Obama's evolving sense of what it means to be a "post-racial" candidate.

Thompson begins with an early strategy meeting,...

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Why Latinos and Asian Americans Went for Hillary

Posted February 6, 2008 | 15:28:08 (EST)

Among Latino and Asian American circles, Super Tuesday brought a sense of giddiness. Thanks to the central importance of California to the primary elections, here was a chance to not just be heard, but to be recognized as a voting bloc right up there with the privileged masses of Iowa...

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