Media Bias: the Sordid Truth

Media Bias: the Sordid Truth

Everyone talks about media bias. Conservatives regularly rail against “the liberal media,” while folks on the left complain that U.S. mass media are too corporate and pro-business. This is something I know a bit about, having been a reporter for a dozen years before I jumped the fence to nonprofit public relations in 2001. Both sides make some legitimate points, but both miss the big picture. In a world of shrinking attention spans matched by shrinking newsroom staffs and budgets, the news media do have a bias: They’re biased in favor of the familiar, the obvious, and the easy-to-get. Stories that require digging – ferreting out unfamiliar sources or doing…
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Progress in Washington, D.C.!

Progress in Washington, D.C.!

If it seems like all the news from our nation’s capital is about gridlock and dysfunction, we have some good news: In at least one corner of Washington, D.C. today, there was real progress and constructive dialogue. The occasion was Greenlining’s Opportunity Summit, which brought together leaders from government, business and academia to talk about how to bring greater diversity and responsiveness to both the financial industry and the government agencies that oversee it. By all accounts, it was a lively and productive discussion. Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), who wrote the language in Dodd-Frank financial reform law that created new Offices of Minority and Women Inclusion in the federal agencies…
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Did You Know? It’s National Consumer Protection Week!

Did You Know? It’s National Consumer Protection Week!

Yesterday marked the beginning of a national week of awareness to promote consumer protection and education. Sponsored by a host of federal, state, and local government agencies as well as a number of nonprofit organizations, National Consumer Protection Week seeks to get consumers engaged and informed about their rights, as a way to facilitate smart decision-making. On a personal note, I find the resources offered on different consumer topics to be particularly helpful. I can’t emphasize enough how important it is for consumers to be informed about matters ranging from banking to credit to investing. In fact, I didn’t understand the need to build credit until my second year of…
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Racism on Cover of Bloomberg Businessweek?

Racism on Cover of Bloomberg Businessweek?

Upset by this image? Don’t worry, I am, too, along with lots of others over the last couple days. In fact, when I took my first glance at it, two questions ran through my head: (1) Are you serious? (2) Who has time for this? Looking at the illustration makes me shudder. In a poor attempt to promote the magazine’s headline “The Great American Housing Rebound,” the image shows exaggerated depictions solely of people of color grabbing for cash, reminiscent of racist cartoons of the past. Here at Greenlining, this is a sensitive topic. Communities of color continue to be blamed for the foreclosure crisis and the Great Recession. In fact, Investor’s Business Daily is the…
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Leadership in the Real World

We continue to be blown away by what the graduates of our Leadership Academy do after they leave us. The latest example to is Frankie Guzman, profiled recently by the San Francisco Chronicle. Frankie is an attorney now, and recipient of a Soros Justice Fellowship. But when he was a youth in East Oxnard, his life took some seriously wrong turns, resulting in his spending six years locked up in the California Youth Authority. While dealing with the consequences of his bad decisions, he was presented with an opportunity to advocate on behalf of his fellow inmates and to begin learning something about leadership. The lesson took. Frankie’s path out…
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Welcome to Greenlining’s Blog

With our new website, we’re also kicking off Greenlining’s first-ever blog. We hope you’ll drop by frequently for updates on issues we’re working on and events that impact our communities. But what we really hope is that you won’t just visit and read, but take part in the conversation. The Greenlining Institute is very much about connecting the dots, about seeing and making connections that may not be obvious on the surface: how wealth impacts health, for example, or how by recognizing the things that communities have in common, we can overcome the problems that separate us. We see this blog as very much a part of that process of…
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