Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.
How the media portrays African-American youth and the importance of civic participation are among the topics that will be discussed at Friday’s second annual State of Black Youth in Iowa Summit in Des Moines. “The number one reason to come out to the summit is just to develop a greater knowledge base and increase your [...]
An Iowa Bystander commentary has called for the ouster of the top official at the Iowa Commission on the Status of African Americans, citing concerns with his leadership and role in the commission spending $75,000 on a disparity study in Davenport. The commentary’s headline read “Time for a change: Fire Abraham Funchess.” It slammed the [...]
Juneteenth, a state holiday in Iowa and 28 states, marks the day when the last slaves in Texas learned that slavery had been abolished on June 19, 1865 – more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed by President Abraham Lincoln. Many black communities across country mark the holiday with educational events and [...]
Earlier this year, Paulette Wiley revived the Education Brain Trust, a group founded in 1982 by African-American educators and activists in Des Moines. The group — then and now — had grave concerns about the education of black students in the Des Moines School District, particularly the disproportionate number of blacks who are suspended, expelled [...]
A panel of predominantly African-American pastors agreed that the controversial remarks made by Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama’s former pastor were inappropriate and poorly timed. “I think there are some things that we can think, but not necessarily should be said,” said Rev. Curtis De Vance of Burns United Methodist Church. “While some of the [...]
Meetings next week to brainstorm ways to improve the lives of Des Moines’ black youths will be rescheduled to allow residents time to cope with the flood conditions gripping parts of the city. The community meetings will cover the racial disparities present in the school, juvenile justice and foster care systems and solicit community input. [...]
When Jamel Kirby moved back to Des Moines in 2004 to take care of his ailing mother, he disliked what he saw happening. The self-described “citizen carrying a heavy burden” found long-standing problems worsening — poor academic achievement and a disparate number of blacks in juvenile and foster care systems.
A panel of clergy will discuss issues of race and the controversy sparked by Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr., Democratic Presidential Nominee Barack Obama’s former minister, during an upcoming Juneteenth panel discussion in Des Moines. “There is no one standard of what the church is in the African-American community. The variety or diversity of religion, even [...]
The publisher of the state’s oldest African-American newspaper expressed concerns in a recent Iowa Bystander issue about the Iowa Commission on the Status of African Americans’ Ongoing Covenant with Black Iowa. Jerald Brantley, in a May 19 column titled “From the pen of JB,” wrote: “Let’s talk about gatekeepers and their negative effect on our [...]