Monday, September 25, 2017

Community Speaks

September 10, 2017 by  
Filed under Feature

What are your feelings about the state of race relations in Las Vegas?

PETE PETERSON

PETE PETERSON

Las Vegas has always been the Mississippi of the West. Some Metro Police officers have killed black men when they entered homes without warrants. I think Las Vegas uses inquest and not grand juries when it comes wrongs committed against black people.

LOUIE OVERSTREET

LOUIE OVERSTREET

Race relations suck in Las Vegas — and we aid and abet racism by not being organized.

STEPHEN HARVEY MUNFORD

STEPHEN HARVEY MUNFORD

I feel that there are race issues wherever you go. The difference is that in other communities, there seem to be better unified and proactive groups that come together to help the oppressed. Stakeholders … in other states have established policies and programs to create opportunities for those who have disadvantages in many social and economic areas.

When Bob Bailey and my dad Harvey Munford were around in the 1960s, ‘70s, and ‘80s, the Las Vegas black community leadership was much more unified and respected. Today? Our black leadership seems fragmented, and demands no respect from the current power structure in Nevada. We have black and minority elected officials, but we have no unified agenda.

Is racism alive in Las Vegas? Our fathers would say, “Look around at the community in old west Las Vegas, and look at the number in the state education system to see how black and Latino students are performing. Look at how many black-owned businesses are operating and employing other blacks, look at how many blacks are sitting in jail and prison and look at how many blacks have access to health and social programs.” Numbers don’t lie.

When you look at the community and the data, you can see racism is still alive and well in Las Vegas and Clark County. It will continue until there is unity among all of us, and we set the agenda for what needs to happen to make things better. Personally, I can deal with the Nazis, skinheads, and white nationalists — but what is hard to deal with are those who seem to keep us pacified and fooled into thinking they care. When in fact they are doing more damage than openly racist groups.

ROSE DAVIS

ROSE DAVIS

The subject of racism needs to be studied within the context of capitalism.

ISAR KING

ISAR KING

My family moved to Las Vegas in 1985. Our journey with housing, education and employment was challenging. Soon I went to work for AFAN and was able to see discrimination and racism at its best. We were given a satellite office in the Edmond Plaza because the administration thought it better to serve the African-American community in the Historic Westside. The Latino and Asian communities never received offices.

I also feel higher education has left the Historic Westside high and dry. Why don’t UNLV and CSN have satellite offices in the Enterprise Complex in the Historic Westside community?

MARCUS HASSEN

MARCUS HASSEN

Well, I haven’t experienced any racism since I’ve lived in Las Vegas since 2009.

When I first moved here, I recall watching a documentary on one of the local channels about the history of racism in Las Vegas and it was also about the educational system. It was a great documentary, but I was astonished on how racist Las Vegas was toward African-Americans in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Black people back then had horrible, inhabitable housing conditions. It almost looked like a third world country on the Historic Westside in the 1940s through the 1970s. Las Vegas does have some black-owned businesses — but not as many as when I first got here. We need more local blackowned businesses.

SHELIA HENDERSON GLENN

SHELIA HENDERSON GLENN

Since being in Las Vegas for almost 20 years, my observation on racism is displayed in different subliminal ways. The disproportionate children of color suspended and expelled for the smallest infraction at Clark County schools. This is like a slow way to take their security and confidence away.

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