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Archive for the ‘the World’ Category

Who is at risk for HIV? World AIDS Day 2012

In the World on 01/12/2012 at 13:29

GettingToZero

Anyone can be infected with HIV. However, certain groups of people are disproportionately affected by HIV. This means that these groups have more HIV infections than other groups, even though their overall group size is small. In the United States these groups are disproportionately affected by HIV: gay/bisexual and other men who have sex with men (MSM), blacks/African Americans, and Hispanics/Latinos. Women—including those who are pregnant—also face risk. Those who abuse intravenous drugs and other substances are also at high risk.

If you think you are at high risk for exposure, or you have sex partners who may be, you should be tested for HIV at least once each year.  Everyone between ages 13 and 64 should be tested at least once as part of routine health care.

Gay, Bisexual, or Other Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM)

Gay, bisexual, or other men who have sex with men (MSM) represent approximately 2% of the U.S. population, but accounted for more than 61% of all new HIV infections in 2009.

Other relevant statistics for MSM

  • Nearly 24,000 MSM are newly infected with HIV each year (CDC estimates that approximately 50,000 total people in the United States are newly infected with HIV each year).
  • MSM is the only risk group with increasing numbers of new HIV infections.

To learn more about these statistics, visit CDC’s page on HIV among Gay, Bisexual and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM).

Blacks/African Americans

Blacks/African Americans are the racial/ethnic group most affected by HIV. They represent approximately 13% of the U.S. population, but accounted for approximately 45% of all new HIV infections in the United States in 2006.
Other relevant statistics for blacks/African Americans

  • At some point in their lives, 1 in 16 black/African American men and 1 in 32 black/African American women will be diagnosed with HIV. Black/African American men are six times more likely to be infected with HIV infection than white men, nearly three times more likely than Hispanic/Latino men and twice as likely as black/African American women.
  • It is 15 times more likely for a black/African American woman to be infected with HIV infection than a white woman and nearly four times more likely than Hispanic/Latina woman.

To learn more about these statistics, visit CDC’s page on HIV among African Americans.

worldaidsday2012Hispanics/Latinos

Hispanics/Latinos represent approximately 15% of the U.S. population, but accounted for 17% of new HIV infections in the United States in 2006.
Other relevant statistics for Hispanics/Latinos

  • The rate of new HIV infections among Hispanic/Latino men is more than double that of white men.
  • The rate of new HIV infections among Hispanic/Latina women is nearly 4 times that of white women.

To learn more about these statistics, visit CDC’s page on HIV among Hispanics/Latinos.

Women

In 2006, women comprised 27% of all new HIV infections in the United States. Women of minority races/ethnicities are especially affected. Black/African American women are the most affected group, followed by Hispanic/Latina women. The HIV infection rate for black women was nearly 15 times as high as that of white women and nearly four times as high as that of Hispanic/Latina women.
Women who are infected with HIV typically get it by having sex with a man who is infected or by sharing needles with an infected person.

Pregnant Women

All pregnant women should know their HIV status.
Pregnant women who are HIV-positive can work with their health care providers to ensure their babies do not contract HIV during pregnancy, delivery, and/or after delivery (through breast milk). It is possible for a mother to have HIV and not spread it to her baby, especially if she knows about her HIV status early and works with her health care provider to reduce the risk.
Out of 50 pregnant women with HIV, the risk of them passing HIV to their babies is approximately:

  • 1 baby out of 50 when women begin treatment during pregnancy
  • 5 babies out of 50 when women begin treatment during labor, or their babies get treatment soon after birth, or both mother and baby receive treatment during labor or soon after birth
  • 13 babies out of 50 when women do not get treatment

Remember that HIV also can be spread through breast milk, so mothers with HIV should not breast-feed their babies.
For more information on pregnant women and HIV visit section on this topic.

Intravenous Drug Users (IDUs)

In 2006, people infected with HIV through injection drug use (IDU) accounted for 12% of all new HIV infections. People who have sex with an injection drug user are also at risk for infection through the sexual transmission of HIV.
While most people who have HIV get it by having sex with someone who is infected, sharing needles and other drug works is a well-documented way of transmitting HIV. (source CDC.gov)

Israel Must Stop Now!!! Hamas Must Stop Now!!!

In Politics, Religion, the World, Uncategorized on 19/11/2012 at 11:55

Israeli and Palestinian Peace

CONSIDER THIS: I do not under any circumstances support what the Israeli government under the leadership of Benjamin Netanyahu has been doing in Palestine especially in the Gaza Strip.  But let me be very clear to those reading this and would translate that to mean that I’m somehow “anti-semitic” or “anti-Jewish” because I don’t support the Israeli government, shame on you for thinking so small.

There are Jews throughout the world as well as Israeli citizens who don’t support this government and what some would deem crimes against humanity.  So for me this is a human issues not an Jewish issue.  Let me further add, I do not under any circumstances support the actions of Hamas and their rhetoric of hatred and their corrupt leadership.  They are very wrong too.

You see, there’s a complex history when it comes to the formation of Israel in the 1940’s and the unwillingness of the European nations and the U.S. to force the creation of a Palestinian state at the same time.  The mistake was made then and the world is still paying for it now.  Some of you think this is about religious belief and ancient prophecy, that too is wrong thinking.  The only prophecy that’s taking place is the self fulfilling kind.  The kind that would continue to see this supposed prophecy to fruition at a cost to all humanity.

What this is, is a powder keg of human behaviour that has caused nothing but pain and suffering on all sides.  True leadership on the part of Israel and Hamas would be working towards to diplomatic solutions of compromise.  Until that happens we will continue to see what we’re seeing now. Pain, suffering, fear and needless deaths.

But when it’s all said and done, it will be the Children of Israel and the Children of Palestine who will loose everything.  And that is where the real shame and sadness resides.

Happy 88th Birthday to James Baldwin. You continue to inspire

In Authors, Culture, Philosophies and Opinions, Politics, the World on 02/08/2012 at 11:58

James Baldwin was born on this day in 1924. He was a public intellectual, a civil and human rights freedom fighter and a literary giant.  In his honour here are a few of his quotes:

  • “American history is longer, larger, more various, more beautiful, and more terrible than anything anyone has ever said about it.”
  • “Any writer, I suppose, feels that the world into which he was born is nothing less than a conspiracy against the cultivation of his talent.”
  • “Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.”
  • “Everybody’s journey is individual. If you fall in love with a boy, you fall in love with a boy. The fact that many Americans consider it a disease says more about them than it does about homosexuality.”

R.I.P. good brother. You spirit, wisdom and intellect is sorely missed.

Remembering Fela Anikulapo Ransome-Kuti. R.I.P. Son of Africa

In Music, the World, Thinking Africa on 02/08/2012 at 11:38

Its been been 15 years since you started your peaceful journey Black President, Omo Iya Aje, Stubborn boy, Oko gbogbo Omoge, Roforofo fight – Olufela Olusegun Oludotun Anikulapo-Kuti 15 October 1938 — 2 August 1997 son of the soil gone but never ever forgotten…..E’erbody say yeah yeaahhh! RIP.” – Tunde Jinadu

This man of men must continue to be remembered for all that he offered both the world and African people.  Fela’s music lives on in multiple genres of today’s music, on Broadway and in our hearts.  Many Americans called him the James Brown of Africa.  I call him a kindred spirit to the Godfather of Soul.  Because he too was an African man and it showed whenever James Brown sang and was on stage.  Kindred spirits is what they were and they are both no longer with us.

Music brings the world together. It tells the stories of a people and Fela knew how to tell a story that would sting the faint of heart.  Because he called out the injustices of his home country of Nigeria. he spoke of the corruption, lack of leadership and the negative influences of foreign religious, i.e., Western Christianity and Eastern Islam.

Until this day many sing his songs, dance to them but seemingly still don’t understand what he was really talking about.  15 years ago the ravages of AIDS took him from us.  AIDS a disease that kills millions throughout Africa and certainly if he were alive today he would be speaking out about AIDS as well.  Remembering Fela is bittersweet but also it’s wonderful because his music means so much to so many.

As is said in Yoruba, “E mi omo n’ile” and he was truly a son of his father’s land.  We miss you Fela but know you are with the ancestors and therefore continues to be with us.

In Honour of Babatunde Olatunji, Morehouse Man, Citizen of the World

In Culture, History, Music, the World, Thinking Africa on 23/07/2012 at 09:36

Morehouse college alumnus Babatunde Olatunji (April 7, 1927–April 6, 2003) was a Nigerian drummer, educator, social activist and recording artist.

Olatunji was born in the village of Ajido, a small town near Badagry, Lagos State, in southwestern Nigeria. A member of the Yoruba people, Olatunji was introduced to traditional African music at an early age.
In 1950, after reading about the Rotary International Foundation’s scholarship program in the Reader’s Digest magazine he applied for it, recived the scholorship and got a place at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia,

Olatunji won a following among jazz musicians, notably creating a strong relationship with John Coltrane and Columbia Records A&R man John Hammond who signed him to the Columbia label in 1957. With Coltrane’s help, he founded the Olatunji Center for African Culture in Harlem. This was the site of Coltrane’s final performance. In 1959 Olatunji released his first of six records on the Columbia label, called Drums of Passion.

In 1969, Carlos Santana had a major hit with his cover version of this first album’s “Jin-go-lo-ba”, which Santana recorded on his debut album, Santana, as “Jingo.” Olatunji favoured a big percussion sound, and his records typically featured more than 20 players, unusual for a percussion based ensemble. Drums of Passion became a major hit and remains in print; it introduced many Americans to world music. Drums of Passion also served as the band’s name. Notable band members included; Clark Terry, Bill Lee, Horace Silver, Yusef Lateef, Sikiru Adepoju and Charles Lloyd, among others.

 

Olatunji’s subsequent recordings include Drums of Passion: The Invocation (1988), Drums of Passion: The Beat (1989) (which included Airto Moreira and Carlos Santana), Love Drum Talk (1997), Circle of Drums (2005) (originally titled Cosmic Rhythm Vibrations, with Muruga Booker and Sikiru Adepoju), and Olatunji Live at Starwood (2003 – recorded at the 1997 Starwood Festival [1]) with guest Halim El-Dabh. He also contributed to Peace Is The World Smiling: A Peace Anthology For Families on the Music For Little People label (1993).

Olatunji recorded with many other prominent musicians (often credited as “Michael Olatunji”), including Cannonball Adderley (on his African Waltz (1961) album), Horace Silver, Quincy Jones, Pee Wee Ellis, Stevie Wonder, Randy Weston, and with Max Roach and Abbey Lincoln on the pivotal Freedom Now Suite aka We Insist, and with Grateful Dead member Mickey Hart on his Grammy winning Planet Drum projects. He is also mentioned in the lyrics of Bob Dylan’s “I Shall Be Free” as recorded on the album The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Olatunji composed music for the Broadway theatrical and Hollywood film productions of Raisin in the Sun. He assisted Bill Lee with the music for his son Spike Lee’s hit film She’s Gotta Have It.-  (Source: Wikipedia)

South African woman to lead African Union, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

In Politics, the World, Thinking Africa on 19/07/2012 at 11:25

Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, incoming President of the African Union

AFRICAN COMMUNITY PSA: Women are doing BIG things on the continent. CONGRATULATIONS to Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to new President of the African Union. Continue to make us proud.

 

Happy 94th Birthday to the One and Only Nelson Mandela

In Culture, History, Politics, the World, Thinking Africa, Uncategorized on 18/07/2012 at 09:37

“During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.” ― Nelson Mandela

 

Meet The League Of Extraordinary Women: 60 Influencers Who Are Changing The World

In Business, Science, Tech and Social Media, the World on 30/06/2012 at 19:33

ALL PHOTOS BY MIKE MCGREGOR

The previously untold story of how an unprecedented network of high-achieving women from the world’s largest companies, innovative startups, philanthropic organizations, government, and the arts combined forces to change the lives of girls and women everywhere.

Act One

IGNITION

They needed the cows.

Maria Eitel, CEO of the Nike Foundation, is starting her tale at the beginning of her eight-year journey to save the world’s girls. She is telling me about one 13-year-old in particular, the very one who inspired her to invent the Girl Effect, a global initiative that in less than a decade has created or supported groundbreaking programming and research that has put the often-terrifying needs of indigent girls in the toughest parts of the world on the global agenda. “I was in this ridiculously poor part of Ethiopia,” says Eitel, whose title at the time was vice president of corporate responsibility at Nike. The founder and CEO, Phil Knight (along with future CEO Mark Parker), had tapped her to create a not-for-profit arm–but had not dictated a mission. Eitel was in the midst of a yearlong exploration to determine how to make the biggest impact.

In Ethiopia, she followed this girl, named Kidan, through her entire day, watching her strap a filthy jerrycan to her back and haul water, then grind grain as she sat in the dirt. “She was amazingly smart,” recalls Eitel, who likes to talk about creating “that moment of inspiration when you know that a girl believes in herself.” She calls it “ignition,” and Kidan had it–she wanted to be a doctor. “She was such a bright light,” says Eitel. “But we learned that it’s not enough.”

When Eitel spoke to Kidan’s mother about her dreams for her daughter, she found out that the child had already been committed to be married, in exchange for cattle. The mother did not share Eitel’s dismay. “Once I was a girl,” she told Eitel. “One day, there was this commotion and they picked me up and put me on a donkey and that was my wedding. I never saw my family again. So Kidan will just have to be strong.” Kidan’s hope for a career–for anything like the self-directed life that Eitel, and probably any reader of this magazine, believes to be a human right–was effectively over, just as her mother’s had been not so long ago. And her survival? Well, her marriage commitment placed that in greater doubt: In sub-Saharan Africa, says Eitel, more than 90% of deaths related to pregnancy are among adolescents. They needed the cows. (cont … Fast Company)

Do Women Make Better Leaders?

In Culture, Leadership, the World, Uncategorized on 12/06/2012 at 09:48

Mercedes Rosalba Aráoz Fernández

Former Finance Minister of Peru Mercedes Fernández has observed that women leaders, herself included, tend to collaborate more openly and distribute power more liberally than males do. The not-very-surprising result, she says, is a more contented workforce or constituency, and better outcomes.

What’s the Big Idea? 

While over 70 percent of women in the United States work outside of the home, compared with 36 percent in Brazil, and while US women marry, on average, a decade older than women in Latin America, the United States has never had a female president. Latin American countries, by contrast, have had five, beginning with Eva ‘Evita’ Peron in 1974. What’s going on here?

Mercedes Rosalba Aráoz Fernández is a Peruvian economist, professor, and politician, who served as who has served as Peru’s minister of Foreign Commerce and Tourism, and as its Finance minister. In her opinion, there’s a widespread belief among corruption-weary Latin Americans that women leaders are less corruptible than their male counterparts. Of course, says Fernández – and as any good student of Evita knows – this isn’t always the case.

But Fernández has observed that women leaders, herself included, tend to collaborate more openly and distribute power more liberally than males do. The not-very-surprising result, she says, is a more contented workforce or constituency, and better outcomes.

Celebrating freedom and the African continent on Africa Day

In Culture, Politics, the World, Thinking Africa on 26/05/2012 at 17:26

After the World War II, the process of decolonization of the African continent gathered momentum as Africans increasingly agitated for more political rights and independence. While in other parts of the continent colonial powers reluctantly and grudgingly relinquished power, in other parts African people launched protracted struggles against the recalcitrant colonial regimes. Thus, between 1945 and 1965 a significant number of African countries gained independence from European colonial powers. Ghana became the first African country south of the Sahara to gain independence on 6 March 1957. Its independence served an inspiration to other African countries struggling against colonial rule and as a result Ghana occupied a central role in the struggle against colonial rule.

Just over a year after its independence Ghana under the leadership Kwame Nkrumah convened the first Conference of Independent African States on 15 April 1958. Amongst those countries that attended were Ghana, Ethiopia, Sudan, Liberia, Libya, Morocco and Tunisia amongst others. There were also representatives of the National Liberation Front of Algeria andthe Union of Cameroonian Peoples. It is worth noting that there were only eight African countries were independent at this time. The conference was an unequivocal assertion of Africa’s rejection of colonial and imperialist domination of the continent. It became the first Pan African conference to be held on the continent bringing together various African countries. Furthermore, the conference became a collective platform from which African countries sought to cooperate in the struggle against colonialism.

To further encourage and forge a common goal of fighting against colonial rule, the conference called for the observance of African Freedom Day once a year, to mark “the onward progress of the liberation movement, and to symbolize the determination of the People of Africa to free themselves from foreign domination and exploitation.” Consequently, 15 April was enacted as called it African Freedom Day (or Africa Liberation Day), and this marked the beginning of what would later be known as Africa Day.

Subsequent to the April conference another conference, the All Africa People’s Conference (AAPC) was held on 8-13 December 1958 in Accra Ghana. The AAPC was attended by both independent and non independent countries, representatives of liberation movements.

Africa is the new developing and growth market.  Pay very close attention.