Saturday, January 8, 2011
Posted by Richelieu at 9:38 PM
New York Catholic Archbishop Timothy Dolan at a a press conference in New York on Jan. 6, 2011. (AP Photo/Chiaroscuro Foundation, Diane Bondareff)
From mzielinskaNEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Archbishop Timothy Dolan is calling for efforts to make abortions in New York City “rare.”
Dolan gathered with other religious leaders on Thursday to draw attention to the city’s high abortion rate. The city health department last month released statistics that showed 39 percent of pregnancies ended with induced termination in 2009.
READ THE REPORT HERE.
“I re-affirm Cardinal John O’Connor’s promise of a quarter-century ago that every woman facing a difficult pregnancy will be provided with free, confidential help of the highest quality from the Archdiocese of New York,” said Archbishop Dolan.
While the numbers have declined in the last decade, the religious leaders said they are still too high.
In 2009, there were 225,667 pregnancies in the City with 126,774 resulting in live births and 87,273 resulting in abortions. In addition to those abortion numbers, there were 11,620 spontaneous terminations.
Forty-six percent of all births in the Bronx result in abortions—the highest among the five boroughs, according to the report.
Blacks had the highest number of abortions with 40,798 with Hispanics having the second highest at 28,364, according to the report.
In response, the Chiaroscuro Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports alternatives to abortion, pledged that it will spend $1 million in 2011 to address the City’s abortion rate—nearly double the national average of 23 percent.
“Like it or not, the legality of abortion is a settled question in New York for the time being,” said Greg Pfundstein, executive director of the Chiaroscuro Foundation. “That doesn’t mean we have to accept the fact that in parts of the city nearly half of all pregnancies end in abortion.”
Dolan said the practice is unlikely to end but that it was important ‘to tell people what is happening’ and help pregnant women come to terms with their choices.
“We are prepared to do everything in our power to help you and your unborn baby to make absolutely certain that you need never feel that you have no choice but an abortion,” Archbishop Dolan said.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the religious leaders also criticized public schools sex education programs that include condom distribution.
(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
Posted by Richelieu at 9:30 PM
By Lazetta Rainey BraxtonAugust 15, 2010
The confirmation a year ago of the first Hispanic Supreme Court justice, following the election of the first black president, has signaled for many people a growing appreciation of racial diversity and inclusiveness in the United States.
The question remains as to what degree such advances will carry over to the financial services industry. At the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors' national conference in May, John W. Rogers Jr., chairman and chief executive of Ariel Investments LLC, provided two critical reasons for the importance of racial diversity in financial services: the ability to serve the growing minority consumer base and the value of having diverse perspectives when it comes to a firm's planning processes. In light of these compelling claims, what is needed for financial advisory firms to become more diverse?
Given the preponderance of white financial professionals and wealthy white clients in the United States, many advisers presume a lack of incentive to broaden their client base. Cross-cultural business relationships require a concerted effort to move beyond comfort and familiarity. The time investment is often assumed to yield a minimal return.
Most financial professionals advocate diversification in long-term investing, even if they have a different approach to developing their firm's client base.
A basic tenet of investment management under modern portfolio theory is to diversify holdings across asset types with complementary risk and return characteristics for different market environments. By investing in assets screened for low correlation, the expected return and overall risk of the portfolio should be more favorable than investing in an individual security or asset class.
In other words, investors shouldn't put all their eggs in one basket.
What would happen if financial advisers applied the basic intent of MPT to matters of racial diversity in the financial profession? Diversification theory would suggest that a firm's business relationships (portfolio) with intentionally diverse asset classes (racial and ethnic groups) can maximize a firm's return (profits and social equity) and minimize its risk (inability to attract and retain minorities as employees or clients and a loss of economic sustainability).
Perceived risks of hiring and serving minorities raise several questions:
• Will the employee have the professional decorum and resolve to warrant the investment?
• Is the firm's culture sufficiently receptive to cultural differences to attract and retain non-white employees and clients?
• What will be the level of trust among employees and clients in light of their different cultural experiences, expectations and biases?
The firm's reward in expanding its minority representation is a stronger talent pool and client base. The goal is to extend the firm's core competencies beyond its market base while avoiding exploitation based on mere opportunity.
The risk-return trade-off requires careful consideration of the firm's goals and objectives, risk tolerance and time horizon.
Where does the firm envision itself in the next 10, 20 or even 50 years? Is diversity central to the firm's mission and objectives? What level of risk will the firm endure to realize its goals?
The firm must find the right balance between safety and growth throughout its projected time horizon. Safety, in this model, suggests that the firm will continue the status quo — relying on its position as a majority firm serving majority interests.
Safer investments can preserve the portfolio's principal value while generating modest income but risk losing purchasing power to inflation over long time horizons. In this analogy, the lack of exposure to minority markets minimizes the firm's ability to keep pace with the expanding purchasing power of historically underserved populations.
The “safe” approach protects the firm's standing as long as its competitors remain at bay and existing clients and future generations identify with the firm's concentrated “majority” business portfolio.
A growth-oriented firm begins from the realization that future racial and ethnic demographics will change market dynamics and returns on human investment. The growth firm willingly assumes higher exposure to the perceived risks of cross-cultural investing for a greater return on investment and increased firm value.
It invests resources strategically and reviews its portfolio regularly to ensure that its allocation aligns well with its goals and time horizon, and that its internal infrastructure effectively and efficiently serves the growing minority client base.
The optimal “diversity” business portfolio for a financial services firm is determined by its expected return relative to identifiable risks in a dynamic-demographic market. Not all advisers will accept the business case for diversity in the marketplace or even be positioned to serve a growing minority population.
The pertinent question with all investment portfolios is: Will the strategy sustainably provide sufficient return to meet goals throughout the time horizon?
Advisers beware — past performance is no guarantee of future performance.
Lazetta Rainey Braxton is founder and chief executive of Financial Fountains LLC, a fee-only financial planning and registered investment advisory firm.
Posted by Richelieu at 12:45 PM
Friday, January 7, 2011
Posted by Richelieu at 9:25 PM
Alysa Stanton says challenges she faced weren't all that different from those of any other first-year rabbi, but hers 'were more visible because the world was watching.'By The Forward
Alysa Stanton, who made headlines when she became the country’s first black woman rabbi, will be leaving her Greenville, N.C. pulpit — after the congregation that hired her less than two years ago decided not to renew her contract. Stanton said the decision to leave was not hers, and that she fully intends to serve out the duration of her contract, which expires July 31, 2011.
“I don’t regret my decision to come to Greenville,” said Stanton, who was born into a Pentecostal family and converted to Judaism as an adult. “I’ve grown to love the community, and the citizens have embraced me in a way that has been transformative.”
Posted by Richelieu at 5:23 PM
I'll venture to say that most black Republicans weren't born that way. It took some life-altering revelation and a good amount of cojones to put oneself into the pariah column. Remember, blacks may be the only group in this country not allowed to have a diversity of political opinion. It's Democrat or be damned. If you become a Republican, you can (and will) be ostracized by friends and family and be called racist names by the political left with impunity.
Posted by Richelieu at 5:22 PM