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ACLU threatens to Tustin CA USD over gifted program enrollment

Old 02-17-07, 07:38 PM
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ACLU threatens to Tustin CA USD over gifted program enrollment

http://cbs2.com/local/local_story_047110949.html


"AP) TUSTIN, Calif. The ACLU is accusing the Tustin Unified School District of enrolling too few Hispanic and African American students in its gifted programs. In a letter to district officials it said there are plans to sue if the disparity isn't corrected.

Almost half of the district's students are Latino, but they made up just over one tenth of the gifted program's enrollment in the 2005 to 2006 school year.

African Americans made up around 2.5 percent of the student body, but only about 1.5 percent of those in the gifted program.

Meanwhile, about a third of the district's students are white, but almost two-thirds of the students in the gifted program are white. And Asians make up about an eighth of district enrollment, but around a quarter of the gifted enrollment.

A Tustin Unified spokesman said the district is confident it does not discriminate. "


I thought this might make for some good discussion.
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Old 02-17-07, 07:59 PM
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This is one of the areas where I disagree with the ACLU - their affirmative action stance. They should stick to free speech, free exercise, establishment of religion and criminal procedure issues.
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Old 02-17-07, 08:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
This is one of the areas where I disagree with the ACLU - their affirmative action stance. They should stick to free speech, free exercise, establishment of religion and criminal procedure issues.
Except for extreme cases (which this isn't one) of AA discrimination, I agree they sould stay out.
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Old 02-17-07, 08:16 PM
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I remember a girl who didn't want her school district to have same-sex classes. She and the ACLU took the district to court and the district backed down later.

I totally agreed with the girl and the ACLU there. It was clearly a policy based on sexism which of course is wrong.

I also remember BwG arguing about this topic before. I think he had a fair point that classes should be competing at the same level although some kids deserve more.
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Old 02-17-07, 08:27 PM
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There is not enough information about the case to offer an informed opinion. On what grounds will the ACLU file its lawsuit? I'd assume they would have to have witnessed some form of discriminatory behavior outside of some quote numbers. Without seeing the actual letter in question, there's no way to know.
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Old 02-17-07, 08:47 PM
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Okay I found a more indepth article

http://www.latimes.com/news/educatio...ck=1&cset=true

ACLU targets Tustin Unified's gifted program
The group says too few blacks and Latinos are enrolled. It threatens to sue if disparity is not corrected soon.
By Seema Mehta, Times Staff Writer
February 16, 2007


Too few Latino and African American students are enrolled in gifted programs in the Tustin Unified School District, the ACLU charged in a letter sent to the district Thursday. The organization said it planned to sue the district if the disparity was not corrected.

"The district is not doing enough to identify talented students from different racial and ethnic groups and different income levels," said Hector Villagra, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Orange County office.

"We've looked at other districts in Orange County, and a number of them are also doing a poor job, but Tustin is really off the charts."

District spokesman Mark Eliot said administrators were reviewing the letter.

"The letter is the ACLU's opinion, and we're confident our district does not discriminate against any student," he said. "We offer a comprehensive learning environment for all of our students."

The lack of minorities in gifted-education programs is a nationwide issue, according to Carolyn Callahan, an education professor at the University of Virginia and a site director for the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented.

Minority and lower-income students have less access to such advantages as proper nutrition and preschool, which are the building blocks for their educational careers, she said. Along with a lack of training of teachers and administrators in how to identify gifted youths from all backgrounds, standardized testing that is culturally biased, and societal messages that lower these children's self-esteem, they are less likely to be chosen for such programs.

"Opportunities don't present themselves in the same way," Callahan said.

In the 2005-06 school year, whites made up 30% of California's 6.3 million students but nearly 45% of students who are identified as gifted. Latinos, who make up nearly half the state's students, are 27% of the state's gifted students. Asians make up 8% of the students and 17% of the gifted.

The numbers are more dramatic in Tustin schools' Gifted and Talented Education program, according to state data. The district has schools in Tustin, Santa Ana and Irvine.

About 43% of the district's students are Latino, yet they made up only 8.6% of the gifted program's enrollment in 2005-06. African Americans make up 2.4% of the student body and 1.4% of those in the gifted program. Whites make up nearly 36% of the district's students and nearly 60% of those in the gifted program. Asians, who are 13.3% of the district enrollment, make up 26.6% of the gifted enrollment.

Villagra said he was hopeful the district would implement policies to diversify its gifted program, such as relying less on standardized testing in favor of looking at students' academic, artistic and leadership potential.

But if changes are not made within a couple months, he said, the organization will sue the district.

Karin Hall, a mother with three children in the gifted program at Tustin Memorial Academy, said she believed the district did a good job of screening students to identify those who were gifted, such as relying heavily on teacher evaluations and offering alternate testing for non-English-speakers. But she wondered if the school could do a better job in communicating with parents about the program, particularly immigrants who don't speak English.
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Old 02-17-07, 11:39 PM
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The public schools are the problem.

Here's the solution:


http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07028/757451-53.stm

Extra Mile Education Foundation reaches out to mostly black families in low-income areas

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

By Tim Grant

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Bookworms are cool at St. Benedict the Moor Catholic School.

A bright kid gains popularity among his peers for getting high grades. No one disrupts a class. And every child at the all-black private school in the heart of the Hill District gets daily homework assignments that parents must sign.

"Our students take their books home every day and they don't lose them either," said Sister Margery Kundar, who has been the principal at St. Benedict for 28 years. "We have a system."

St. Benedict is one of four K-8 Catholic schools serving mostly black families in low-income communities supported by the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh through a program called the Extra Mile Education Foundation.


For the past 16 years, Holy Rosary in Homewood, St. Agnes in Oakland and St. Benedict have been Extra Mile schools. St. James in Wilkinsburg became an Extra Mile school in 2000.

In addition, some pupils at Good Shepherd in Braddock and Cardinal Wright Regional on the North Side receive scholarship aid from the program.

This week, Catholic schools nationwide are celebrating Catholic Schools Week, with a theme calling them "the good news in education."

For Candace Ragin, St. Benedict and the Extra Mile program were good news. She is one of 1,049 pupils who have graduated from eighth grade through the Extra Mile program.

"It's a very structured environment that helped me focus on what I was there for, which was to learn," said Ms. Ragin, 25, who graduated from St. Benedict in 1995. She went on to North Catholic High School and earned a law degree from Duquesne University in June.

"Starting off in such a positive, nurturing environment got me off on the right path to where I am now and where I'll be going in the future," she said.

The schools have been around for many years; St. Benedict, for example, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this month.

But all of the Extra Mile schools would have been shut down years ago if people in those communities had not cried out for them and local business leaders had not responded with a fund-raising campaign that has so far raised nearly $44 million to subsidize tuition costs.

The nonprofit Extra Mile Education Foundation is funded by charitable donation from Pittsburgh corporations like Westinghouse Electric and philanthropies such as The Heinz Endowments.

"We felt very strongly that we should do everything in our power to keep the schools open because they provided such a wonderful opportunity for these children to learn and have hope for the future," said Tom O'Brien, chairman of the Extra Mile board of directors and retired chairman of PNC Financial.

One Extra Mile graduate, William Thomas, 28, is a certified public accountant for Ernst & Young. The Holy Rosary alumnus is paying tuition for two godchildren to attend St. Benedict.

"It kept me out of trouble and the temptations that existed outside of school and the challenges I faced growing up in an inner-city environment," said Mr. Thomas, who grew up in Wilkinsburg.

Most of the 830 pupils who attend the Extra Mile schools are non-Catholic and low-income. An average of 70 percent of the pupils -- and as many as 87 percent in some schools -- have family incomes low enough to qualify for the free or reduced-price lunch program.

Parents who rely on the Extra Mile subsidies to help pay school costs are on public assistance, are low-wage earners or are not working because they're in school. Many are single parents. Some are grandparents or great-grandparents raising children who were neglected by their own parents.


These families put education first despite obstacles they face in their lives.

"[The children] learn academics, but they also learn a real sense of themselves, that they can fly," said Ambrose Murray, executive director of the Extra Mile Foundation.

With her grandchildren's mother hooked on drugs and alcohol, Irma Woodson knew they would have grown up in foster homes if she hadn't met the challenge of raising them herself.

She rescued two of them from a crack house in Northview Heights, where they had been abandoned. She carried the other two home from the hospital right after each was born.

As a result of saving her grandchildren, she lost her own marriage and her nursing career.

"Education was always a priority in my household," said Ms. Woodson, 57, of Oakland, who now runs a home day care. "Catholic school classes are small and stay together. They bond and make lifetime friends. They all practically grow up together, and they're good influences."

It costs Ms. Woodson about $3,000 a year to send three of her grandchildren -- Christina, 12; Natasha, 10; and Hasan, 8, -- to St. Agnes.

LaMar Woodson, 16, who also graduated from St. Agnes, is a junior at North Catholic High School, where tuition is about $7,500 a year. Ms. Woodson's portion of the bill comes to about $1,500, thanks to a subsidy from the Crossroads program, which helps youngsters continue in Catholic schools when they leave Extra Mile schools.

"I get no government assistance for raising the kids," said Ms. Woodson, a non-Catholic. "Everything we get comes from Extra Mile, Crossroads and my family day care."

Lynn Harris, 36, a paralegal, is separated from her husband and struggling to make ends meet. She sends her children to St. James so they'll learn Christian values along with the three R's.

Ms. Harris graduated from St. James long before Extra Mile came along and has since put all of her six children through the school. Two have graduated. Four of them -- Asia, 13; London, 11; Milan, 8; and Terevon, 5, -- still attend St. James.

"Before Extra Mile started at St. James, I was really struggling to keep them there because of the tuition," Ms. Harris said. "I was always on the verge of taking them out of school."

Parents who receive funding are required to volunteer at the schools.

Ms. Harris does way more than the four lunch duties that parents are asked to work each year. She is vice president of the Parent Teacher Guild, runs a Santa shop in December and keeps the score books for the school basketball games.

"I'm pretty much involved in anything that the school is doing," she said. "Being there lets me know my kids are getting what I expect them to."

The Extra Mile Education Foundation was started in 1990 after then-Bishop Donald Wuerl arranged a series of meetings with local business leaders such as Mr. O'Brien and John Marous, chief executive officer of Westinghouse, to establish a foundation to raise money to meet the needs of poor families who depend on the Catholic schools in their neighborhoods.

The schools were in jeopardy because population declines during the 1980s resulted in many inner-city Catholic schools falling on hard times. The diocese could no longer support many programs it had funded.

"This was certainly cutting edge at the time," said Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, chancellor of Saint Vincent College, who worked closely with Archbishop Wuerl. "It's still seen as a model program that others are trying to duplicate in other parts of the country.""

The annual budget for all the Extra Mile schools is about $1.9 million, which comes primarily from donations and a portion of the interest from its $17 million endowment.

A survey conducted by the diocese last year showed 96 percent of the pupils who graduated from Extra Mile schools graduated from high school within four years. About half of them went on to either higher education, the military or trade schools. Not one has ever failed ninth grade.

"If you look at the attendance rate of kids in our schools, it's 94 to 95 percent attendance," said Sue Vertosick, director of programs for the diocese. "We have 35 percent perfect attendance at some schools. We don't lose a lot of families unless they are moving out or there are custody changes or factors beyond our control."

Along with academics and religion, the schools encourage positive images of African-American culture.

Photographs of famous black leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. and Frederick Douglass cover the walls of classrooms at St. Agnes. A painting of Jesus portrayed as a black man hangs in the front foyer at St. Benedict the Moor.

"What we work for is to help them give back to the community. We want them to be a credit to society," said Sister Margery. "As difficult as things can get, I've never not enjoyed walking in this building."
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Old 02-18-07, 12:53 AM
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social engineering is just wrong

you might have good intentions but its wrong, and doesn't make sense if you have something called common sense
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Old 02-18-07, 01:54 AM
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I say they just declare that everyone is gifted. That will stop the hurt feelings. We'll be a dumber and weaker nation, but damn, just imagine how good we'll feel.
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Old 02-18-07, 07:43 AM
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Shouldn't "gifted" be based on grades, academic performance, tests, etc, not skin color? Even decades ago, I was in a lot of "advanced" programs in high school. You had to want it as you had to work your ass off to keep up.
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Old 02-18-07, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by OldDude
Shouldn't "gifted" be based on grades, academic performance, tests, etc, not skin color? Even decades ago, I was in a lot of "advanced" programs in high school. You had to want it as you had to work your ass off to keep up.
I think the argument is that "gifted" status should be based on intelligence and the metrics you mentioned (grades, academic performance, tests, etc.) systematically under-report the intelligence of minorities as compared to whites.

I'm not saying I buy the argument, but let's not set up a straw man "OMG! The ACLU wants quotas in the gifted programs!"
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Old 02-18-07, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by OldDude
Shouldn't "gifted" be based on grades, academic performance, tests, etc, not skin color? Even decades ago, I was in a lot of "advanced" programs in high school. You had to want it as you had to work your ass off to keep up.
everyone has a gift
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Old 02-18-07, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by JasonF
I think the argument is that "gifted" status should be based on intelligence and the metrics you mentioned (grades, academic performance, tests, etc.) systematically under-report the intelligence of minorities as compared to whites.

I'm not saying I buy the argument, but let's not set up a straw man "OMG! The ACLU wants quotas in the gifted programs!"

a lot of the so called gifted students are only that way because their parents take part in their education and teach them new things. why is it that asian kids are minorities and usually over represented in these programs?
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Old 02-18-07, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by JasonF
I think the argument is that "gifted" status should be based on intelligence and the metrics you mentioned (grades, academic performance, tests, etc.) systematically under-report the intelligence of minorities as compared to whites.

I'm not saying I buy the argument, but let's not set up a straw man "OMG! The ACLU wants quotas in the gifted programs!"
Their ability to perform within in the gifted program will clearly be based on academic performance, which IS grades, tests, etc. It's all about the A's, baby. That's what the gifted program is, a home for (very) competitive nerds.

PS: You need an "except Asians" clause in your claim above. They don't seem to have any trouble with metrics and blow away the white kids on metrics, even though they should have some of the same "cultural disadvantages" of the test not being defined around their culture. I'm actually surprised Asians are not MORE over-represented if acceptance is based on merit.

And the ACLU has precisely defined imperfection in the program as participation not being equal to the percentage in the general population, so what do you think they want? They USED the metric that implies they think that as their proof of problem.

If they can show a more qualified minority was excluded and a less qualified white kid accepted, then they have a valid argument. Attempting to apply quotas to decide if there is a problem doesn't cut it.
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Old 02-18-07, 02:11 PM
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When I was in elementary school, one of the determining factors in acceptance to the gifted program was a "locked room" survey. I can't seem to find a copy online, but it goes something like this:

Everyone in the class gets a piece of paper with a scenario on it. There are different categories under the scenario, and each category has 3 blanks under it. Some categories are: Leader, Entertainer, Thinker, Mediator, etc.

The scenario is roughly as follows:

Your teacher leaves the room and suddenly gated bars slam over the windows and doors. You are all trapped. Look around you: these people are the ones who will keep you calm, eliminate certain problems that arise, and try to figure a way out. Which of your classmates are best suited for each role?

Each student in the class then writes the names of his classmates who would make the best leader, problem solver, etc.

Acceptance into gifted programs isn't as simple as IQ or grades. There's a lot of social engineering going on already.
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Old 02-18-07, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Ranger
<b>I also remember BwG arguing about this topic before.</b> I think he had a fair point that classes should be competing at the same level although some kids deserve more.
People remember things I say?

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Old 02-18-07, 11:08 PM
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If anyone's interested, here is the letter sent by ACLU of Southern California

http://www.aclu-sc.org/attach/t/TustinGATE.pdf

(Note that the link is to a pdf file).
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Old 02-18-07, 11:21 PM
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I often find myself on the opposite side of whatever the ACLU says. So my barometer is that if they are for it, I am against it. The important thing is that the testing procedures to determine "gifted" are free of any bias. I remember back in college in my business law class, in order to keep out minorities, "intelligence" tests were given to prospective employees, however the tests were biased heavily toward ethnicity. Loaded with questions only people of a certain background would know. For example, give me an IQ test but load it up with questions about street slang in Los Angeles, I would score much lower than a hispanic or another native of the area. If they can prove bias in the procedures that's one thing, noy having members in the exact same percentages as the population in general is crap.
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Old 02-19-07, 01:27 AM
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I can't speak for this particular gifted program, but I regularly adminsiter IQ tests for children lookingto be admitted to "gifted" schools and programs.

These types of programs usually focus primarily on IQ scores (not grades or achievement based criteria) and they typically have a cut-off range that has some wiggle room. Meaning, they may be willing to accept lower scores from various ethnic backgrounds or acccept students who show a strong ability in one partiular area, but do not score as "gifted " in the overall score.

These tests are not perfect and can reflect some cultural bias, but they are certainly a lot better than they used to be. Typically, these types of schools and programs have pretty clear standards set up, so they can avoid problems such as the one in this situation. But as I said, they aren't perfect, and if anything, I have noticed that they usually err on the side of increasing cultural diversity and not the other way around.
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Old 02-20-07, 11:22 AM
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Take a look at the single bolded sentence toward the end of this article.

Since the ACLU filed a lawsuit over the racial disparity in the testing for gifted, why hasn't the ACLU filed a similar lawsuit over the racial disparity in the testing for AIDS?


http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/04/ny...gewanted=print

February 4, 2006

Report Highlights AIDS Risk to Black Men and Women

By MARC SANTORA

In the decade since effective drug treatments for AIDS have slashed death rates across the country, black New Yorkers continue to fall ill and die at startling rates, according to new data from the city health department.

Today, one in five black men in New York City between 40 and 49 has H.I.V. or AIDS. Black women, meanwhile, account for 34 percent of new AIDS cases, up from 12 percent 20 years ago.

Further, heterosexual sex has now replaced drug use as the most common means of transmission of the virus to women, creating a more difficult terrain for health care workers.

While there is a disparity in infection rates between whites and others across a spectrum of diseases, health officials are particularly struck by those among AIDS patients in New York. Although blacks make up only 25 percent of the city's population, they account for 50 percent of all AIDS fatalities.

Black men die at a rate six times that of white men, and black women die at a rate nine times that of white women.

Health officials who have been tracking the disproportionate AIDS death rates among minorities over the last several years say those rates stem from factors including a failure to identify the sick and get them into treatment, as well as a failure to keep them in care and the strong stigma that AIDS carries in many minority neighborhoods.

Last week, Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, the city's health commissioner, said that changing this grim portrait of AIDS would require a radical rethinking of how to combat the disease, including changes in state law to allow health workers to test people for H.I.V. more aggressively and permit health department workers to use the information the city already collects to reach out directly to patients and their doctors to help in treatment.

Mr. Frieden would like to have patients tested for H.I.V. as part of their routine medical care. While changes would still require oral consent, he would like to ease the cumbersome process of written consent and hearing from their doctors the downside of being tested, as the law currently requires.

The city has struggled for years to find ways to provide AIDS information to certain groups, like married men who secretly also have sex with other men.

Some health care experts say, however, that the city has been too slow to act.

"The city has buried its head in the sand on this as far as I am concerned," said Dr. Karen Brudney, director of the infectious diseases clinics at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia Hospital.

"For 10 years I have seen rising rates and rising caseloads," she said. While strongly supporting Dr. Frieden's efforts, she said the city needed to focus on problems that prevent patients from getting basic care, like frequent changes in residence.

There are few financial barriers to getting care for H.I.V. and AIDS, however. Through an elaborate network of programs financed by the city, the state and the federal government, help is available and drug treatments for even the poorest patients are fully subsidized.

But the latest statistics from the Health Department show that many people who most need care fail to get it.

When AIDS largely affected gay white men, those men tended to take charge of their own care, health officials said.

That has not happened among black and Latino men and women, in large part, health officials say, because many patients would rather die than risk having family or friends find out they are sick.

For instance, Chelsea, with a large population of gay white men, continues to have the highest rate of newly diagnosed cases in the city, 153 per 100,000 people in 2004. Central Harlem is close behind, with 119 newly diagnosed people for every 100,000.

Yet infected people in Chelsea are half as likely to die from the disease.

Black women have been particularly hard hit: Heterosexual sex accounts for an increasing rate of new AIDS cases.

The increase in H.I.V. infection among young women is even more alarming. In New York, girls and women now account for 48 percent of new infections among teenagers 13 to 19, according to a December report by the New York State AIDS Advisory Council.

The rate of AIDS among black women is 27 times the rate among white women.

The report found that a variety of reasons, including cultural and gender issues, come into play in the lives of minority and ethnic women. "Women are expected to accept, or at least not to question, the lifestyles of their male partners," the report stated.

Concerns about stigma and privacy originally led to stringent laws to protect patients. But those laws, however necessary 20 years ago, also meant that many of the traditional public health approaches used in fighting other infectious diseases — like contacting patients about their need for treatment — could not be used. The threat of violence also deters women from trying to negotiate safer sex or resisting unprotected sex, the report said. Secrecy and denial about high-risk activity, prostitution and infidelity pervade many ethnic groups, and as better drugs became available and death rates fell, many health experts said, a sense of complacency settled in.
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Old 02-23-07, 04:08 PM
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More ACLU fun:

ACLU Criticizes County Executive

(Rochester, N.Y.) -- The American Civil Liberties Union is criticizing Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks for what they say is an infringement on First Amendment rights.

Brooks threatened to pull the county's $6 million funding to Rochester's Central Library after learning that the library lets adult patrons view blocked Web sites that could be inappropriate or pornographic.

On Thursday, Scott Forsyth, local counsel for the ACLU, said Brooks shouldn't intervene in what information the public at the library should be able to see, whether online or in printed materials.

Trying to follow federal law, the library has policies that block access to Web sites deemed inappropriate. The block can be removed by librarians at the request of adult patrons, a procedure approved by the Supreme Court in 2003.

For now, the Central Library is no longer providing unfiltered access to the Internet. Forsyth said the ACLU may consider suing the library if it doesn't allow adults to get Web sites unblocked.

Officials from the library and the Monroe County Board of Trustees will meet next week to talk about the issue.

http://www.13wham.com/news/local/sto...fe692b&rss=102
-----------------------------------------------------
ACLU weighs in on library porn issue

An I-Team 10 hidden camera investigation into library porn has sparked a debate on first amendment rights.

We have received numerous emails on both sides of the issue.

As it stands right now, all computers at the Rochester Central Library are blocked from pornographic websites until the library board of trustees decides what to do next.

A fire storm has erupted in Rochester over images from an I-Team 10 investigation that show Central Library patrons viewing graphic sexual material on a regular basis. What our hidden cameras found didn't violate library policy. Adults are allowed to view unfiltered material as long as they are 17 or older.

Wednesday, an angry County Executive Maggie Brooks expressed disgust over the policy and threatened to halt funding to the central branch totaling more than $6.6 million. It has set off a debate over first amendment rights versus the protection against unsuitable material.

Thursday, ACLU legal counsel Scott Forsyth said the organization plans to encourage the library to stick to its policy, and if necessary, would take legal action.

"I would argue that at the library, an adult patron, if he or she is willing to comply with the restrictions of the library on access, has a constitutional right to look at these sites," Forsyth said.

Forsyth says the library is on the right side of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that adults can have access to material that isn't illegal. But Thursday, Brooks was not backing down.

"I would just simply say to those who are trying to make this an issue about the first amendment, that the library can continue to do that and choose to maintain the policy it has. I can choose not to fund access to pornography in our public institution," said Brooks.

Since our investigation, we have received dozens of emails expressing a range of opinions. One viewer wrote, "Thanks for uncovering the filth in our society."

From another email, this: "Why do I have to pay for a computer being used for that purpose in a public, 100% taxpayer funded facility?"

On the other end, this viewer wrote, "It is the parent's job to protect the children from such images, not the public library or Maggie Brooks."

The American Library Association weighed in on the issue as well.

"It's not appropriate to put filters on machines and not lift them for adults and I'll go back to the fact that whoever would be thinking that putting filters on computers, that they're going to stop objectionable material from coming through, is very naive," said Kent Oliver, chairperson of the ALA's Intellectual Freedom Committee.

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer was in Rochester Thursday and expressed his opinion on the matter as well. He criticized Brooks's decision and says public libraries need more funding to deal with the problems they face.

http://www.10nbc.com/index.asp?templ...story_id=21653
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Old 02-23-07, 04:56 PM
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I was going to bring this up. It was the hot topic on the local talk shows today. Good old Schumer, his answer for everything is more funding.

The ACLU seems to think everyone should be able to do everything anytime they want. As one talk show host expressed, libraries decide what to carry and what not to all the time. They don't provide porn in print, why should they have to provide it on the internet.

My bone of contention is that if the debate were about a Catholic or Christian website, the ACLU would be on the other side of the argument saying that because it is being paid for with tax dollars, it violates church and state.
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Old 02-23-07, 05:12 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by JimRochester

My bone of contention is that if the debate were about a Catholic or Christian website, the ACLU would be on the other side of the argument saying that because it is being paid for with tax dollars, it violates church and state.

Your bone would be wrong then. If the library prevented a person from accessing Christian websites, the ACLU would see that as a violation of the free speech and free exercise clauses. The ACLU may be for separation of church and state but they have a long history of defending the free exercise clause. Yes, even for Christians. They've defended Baptist churches, Christian students who wanted to sign christmas songs in a school event, Jerry Falwell, etc etc.

Here are more of the etcs:
http://midtopia.blogspot.com/2006/03...s-liberty.html
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Old 02-23-07, 07:29 PM
  #24  
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The general ignorance of what the ACLU supports and what it doesn't continues to astound me. But I guess it makes sense that a cop would oppose civil liberties on principle.
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Old 02-23-07, 08:12 PM
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I would not deny that the ACLU defends some people that would surprise some, or that they don't do a great many things. But they also defend a lot of stuff like NAMBLA and other things that gives them a bad image.

I understand the argument of defending these things to avoid a "slippery slope," but if I were the ACLU, I would let some of the things slide.
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