Can California Protect Frontline Communities From Climate Change?

Can California Protect Frontline Communities From Climate Change?

In the last five years, San Jose has seen severe drought followed by the worst floods in a century and, to top it off,  record breaking temperatures. These extreme weather events are not unique to the Bay Area, but are happening all around California as well as the U.S. and the world. Climate change makes them more common and more severe. Although California is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, it won’t stop global warming. We can slow down extreme weather events like those in San Jose, but  communities will continue to feel the impacts of climate change no matter how much we curb emissions. The weather conditions brought on…
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Dreams from My Father: Nazis in America

Dreams from My Father: Nazis in America

My dad fought in World War II, but didn’t talk about it much. As a doctor with the army in the Pacific, I’m sure he saw lots of things he didn’t want to remember. But he did tell me one thing that’s stuck with me vividly: “I was p***ed off they sent me to the Pacific. I wanted to go to Europe and kill Nazis.” That’s no surprise. Though not observant, my dad’s family was Jewish. I can’t even imagine what it must have been like to be thousands of miles away, seeing what the Nazis were doing to Jews in Europe, and be unable to do anything about it.…
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How This Introvert Found Her Voice

How This Introvert Found Her Voice

Over the last several weeks we’ve been posting a series of blogs from our current Greenlining Fellows, exploring their own personal transformation and #ChangeFromWithin, and what that means for leadership development. You can read the series here. Here at Greenlining’s Leadership Academy, we’ve been on a journey. We invite you to join us. I applied to be a Greenlining Policy Fellow because I wanted to work on economic policy research and advocacy. I had imagined my year at Greenlining would look like busy days spent reading and writing reports, like I’d seen at the think tanks and government offices I’d interned in. Imagine my anxiety as an introvert when I…
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All that Glitters Ain’t Gold: Can a Black Woman Save Uber’s Brand?

All that Glitters Ain’t Gold: Can a Black Woman Save Uber’s Brand?

Days ago, in an article titled, “Is This the Woman That Will Save Uber?”, the New York Times reported that Uber hired its first chief brand officer, Ms. Bozoma Saint John.  From Pepsi, Beats, Apple, and GlaxoSmithKline, Ms. Saint John has branded the sale of everything from carbonated drinks to headphones to smoking cessation drugs.  Based on that work history, perhaps it matters less what is branded for sale, and more that the sale depends on an appealing image. But, what happens when what’s for sale is the labor of contracted workers? What happens when what’s really for sale is people? Recently, Uber has come under fire for a series…
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Public Transit: Uber’s Next Casualty?

Public Transit: Uber’s Next Casualty?

A 15 minute Uber ride or a 30 minute transit ride? For many affluent city-dwellers who increasingly prefer comfort and convenience, making this choice is a no-brainer. However, this choice is a privilege that remains out of reach for many transit-dependent low-income communities — who face many barriers to accessing ride-hailing services. Uber competing with taxis is old news, but many now worry that ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft compete with public transit for riders. Not only can ride-hailing service be incredibly convenient, nowadays they can be dirt cheap — increasing the appeal of simply opening the mobile app. This trend may come as no surprise to cities with…
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Really!? Trump Orders Investigation of Discrimination Against White College Applicants

Really!? Trump Orders Investigation of Discrimination Against White College Applicants

At this point, the only thing that surprises me is that I can be surprised by Trump’s racism. Yesterday afternoon the New York Times broke news that the Justice Department’s Civil Rights division will investigate discrimination against white college applicants due to affirmative action. Education policy falls outside of Greenlining’s wheelhouse, but I am the self-proclaimed and undisputed Diversity Diva and so felt compelled to weigh in. First let’s address the obvious. This affirmative action investigation is part of the larger, racist MAGA movement (which I previously wrote about here). As Van Jones said on election night “[Trump’s victory] was a white-lash against a changing country.” Trump appealed to millions…
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Racing Towards the “American Dream”?

Racing Towards the “American Dream”?

Over the next several weeks we’re posting a series of blogs from our current Greenlining Fellows, exploring their own personal transformation and #ChangeFromWithin, and what that means for leadership development. You can read the series here. Here at Greenlining’s Leadership Academy, we’ve been on a journey. We invite you to join us. At 11 years old, I wrote my first poem, called “2005.” Around this time, I began questioning what is this thing we call the “American Dream”? The news, my family, and school all talked about it. This is how we do reminds me of sixth grade That was when I had everything made From a good life to…
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BREAKING NEWS: Trumpcare Is Dead, at Least for Now – So Now What?

BREAKING NEWS: Trumpcare Is Dead, at Least for Now – So Now What?

The latest Obamacare repeal effort is dead – for now. Trumpcare may actually be gone this time, though you never know. Last night, three Republican senators joined all 48 Senate Democrats to block the latest attempt by President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to repeal the Affordable Care Act, dubbed the “skinny repeal.” After Tuesday’s controversial vote to begin debate, the media lauded Arizona Sen. John McCain for breaking ranks with his party and delivering what may very well be the most consequential “thumbs down” in modern history. Two female senators persisted to avoid this crisis, yet the final credit goes to a man with inconsistent votes. pic.twitter.com/iKJQCk4hN9…
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Leadership: We See You. We Hear You. We Believe in You.

Leadership: We See You. We Hear You. We Believe in You.

Over the next several weeks we’re posting a series of blogs from our current Greenlining Fellows, exploring their own personal transformation and #ChangeFromWithin, and what that means for leadership development. You can read the series here. Here at Greenlining’s Leadership Academy, we’ve been on a journey. We invite you to join us. “You will be seen and you will be heard.” I vividly remember Patrick Brown, the director of the Leadership Academy, saying these words on the second day of my fellowship at The Greenlining Institute. I recall thinking: this must be that liberal bay area language that people warned me about before I moved here; the sort of language…
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Republican Attack on Data Transparency is an Attack on Communities of Color

Republican Attack on Data Transparency is an Attack on Communities of Color

Data illuminate discrimination and inequity. As Justice Louis B. Brandeis famously wrote about another issue involving public disclosure of data, “Sunlight is… the best of disinfectants.” Right now, Republicans are on a mission to slash financial regulation, and financial data collection is on the chopping block. Several bills making their way through the House and Senate would reduce the amount of data that banks and other financial institutions need to publicly report – depriving all of us of critical information we need to make sure the banking industry treats communities of color fairly. Republicans’ proposal to repeal Section 1071, upcoming small business lending data requirements, would particularly harm communities of color…
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