Colorblind New Mexico

Around the hood many believe that Bill Peifer, Bernalillo Democratic Party Chair colorblind comments made last week, while very offensive and demeaning, may actually be a clue as to why a Democratic-majority State Legislature failed to provide funding to the state’s African American Performing Art Center. Although they had no problem appropriating funding from the […]

Colorblind New Mexico

Around the hood many believe that Bill Peifer, Bernalillo Democratic Party Chair colorblind comments made last week, while very offensive and demeaning, may actually be a clue as to why a Democratic-majority State Legislature failed to provide funding to the state’s African American Performing Art Center. Although they had no problem appropriating funding from the budget for both the Hispanic and the Native American Culture centers. And it is not the first time in a session the Legislature has totally dismissed projects and/or items specific to the black community.  The center bears the name of House Majority Leader Sheryl William Stapleton, D-Albuquerque, who happens to be black. Sorry, my bad, that’s right you’re colorblind.

While hanging out at A Better U, the word on the street is that during the University of New Mexico’s search for a new head Men’s Basketball Team coach not one black coach was included within the list of potential candidates for the position. And furthermore, no black administrators or faculty were even casualy offered the opportunity to provide input within the selection process of a program manned by more than 50 percent by African American students.  Two questions were posed that merit mention: Would this have occurred if there were more African Americans working within the UNM Athletic Department and/or the Men’s Basketball Department? Is UMN, who still does not have a black person sitting on the board of regents, making greater efforts to eradicate institutional racism on its campus as the school promised following hazing incidents aimed at black students two years ago? Sorry, my bad, that’s right like the Bernalillo Democratic Party, and the New Mexico State Democratic Party, you’re colorblind.

Has anyone noticed that a great amount of the ART project construction emphases is near and around the Confederate Monuments in Old Town?  The same monuments that Mayor Richard Berry, Albuquerque, promised the Albuquerque African American community he would removed or modify over two years ago? While some still insist these monuments represent New Mexico’s heritage, the fact remains that this commemoration is sponsored by the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV), an organization that has been directly tied to the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist organizations throughout its history. Yet, when completed, ART will bring all visitors and residents of the state right to a commemoration of one of this nation’s most atrocious acts against humanity: The Slavery of Black people.  Oh, I’m sorry, my bad, like Bernalillo Democratic Party, New Mexico State Democratic Party, and the University of New Mexico, the Mayor’s office and city of Albuquerque is also colorblind.

With the APS 2016 – 2017 coming to a close over the next few weeks headlined by high school and middle school graduations, many in the African American community are interested in the plans of the APS Board to address discriminatory disciplinary practices  throughout the schools in the district prior to the beginning the next school year. Many groups, including Black Parents of New Mexico, have been urging the APS Board to look into the disproportion number of as well as the severity of expulsions and suspensions administered to African American students.  Throughout the nation this practice is the catalyst of the prison pipeline that plagues the family and youth while deteriorating life at large for all of society. This past February, a more progressive mindset appeared to have been elected to the board; a mindset that should embrace the belief that everyone deserves a fair shot at a decent, fulfilling and economically secure life. However, I must note that traditional progressives do not believe race is endemic to the American experience and furthermore, there is not one black person sitting on the school board. Oh, I’m sorry, my bad, like the Bernalillo Democratic Party, the New Mexico State Democratic Party, the University of New Mexico, the Mayor’s office and city of Albuquerque, you’re all so, so, colorblind.

Elder Michael Jefferson is a minister at Procession Ministries in Albuquerque.

We're ad free

That means that we rely on support from readers like you. Help us keep reporting on the most important New Mexico Stories by donating today.

Related

Senators throw support to embattled Ivey-Soto

Senators throw support to embattled Ivey-Soto

By Justin Horwath, New Mexico In Dept Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto is running for a fourth term despite the state Democratic Party’s decision to censure…
AG announces legislative priorities for upcoming special session

AG announces legislative priorities for upcoming special session

Attorney General Raúl Torrez announced on Thursday his legislative priorities for July’s special legislative session, including the creation of a crime victim’s unit to…
Correa Hemphill to step down from legislature

Correa Hemphill to step down from legislature

State Sen. Siah Correa Hemphill, a Democrat from Silver City, won’t seek reelection in the general election in November, leaving SD 28, a swing…
BLM announces criteria for lands that the government might purchase

BLM announces criteria for lands that the government might purchase

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management announced the criteria for landowners to nominate private lands adjacent to public lands that can be sold or…
EPA announces $18.9M in funding to address PFAS contamination in New Mexico

EPA announces $18.9M in funding to address PFAS contamination in New Mexico

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded the New Mexico Environment Department nearly $19 million to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants in drinking water.…
Environmental historian reflects on the legacies of Aldo Leopold and the Gila Wilderness

Environmental historian reflects on the legacies of Aldo Leopold and the Gila Wilderness

One hundred years ago, conservationist Aldo Leopold proposed designating 500,000 acres of land in the Gila National Forest as an area where no roads…
Stansbury outlines funding secured for early childhood and youth services programs

Stansbury outlines funding secured for early childhood and youth services programs

U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury secured $8.3 million for childhood development and youth services in the 1st congressional district through federal community project funding. Stansbury,…
Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

Amid new graduation requirements, what do high schoolers want to learn?

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican The main things that bring Brayan Chavez to school every day: Seeing, talking to and engaging with…
Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

Special ed teachers hope lawmakers OK pay raises, admin changes

By Margaret O’Hara, The Santa Fe New Mexican Brittany Behenna Griffith has a laundry list of adjectives to describe the ideal special education teacher:…
Heinrich questions FDA leadership on baby formula safety, mifepristone

Heinrich questions FDA leadership on baby formula safety, mifepristone

U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Robert Califf answered questions about the safety of human milk formula and mifepristone on Wednesday. Sen. Martin…
Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Health workers fear it’s profits before protection as CDC revisits airborne transmission

Amy Maxmen, KFF Health News Four years after hospitals in New York City overflowed with covid-19 patients, emergency physician Sonya Stokes remains shaken by…
Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Lujan Grisham, Biden admin announce $10 million in federal funds for tribes, pueblos

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Friday $10 million in funding from the federal American Rescue Plan Act was awarded to six tribal nations and…
Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham warned that banning contraceptives “could be next” when talking to a CNN host about New Mexico’s border and abortion issues.…
UNM approves land acquisition for Las Cruces reproductive health center

UNM approves land acquisition for Las Cruces reproductive health center

Thursday, the University of New Mexico Board of Regents approved a land acquisition for a full-spectrum reproductive healthcare center, that will include abortion care,…
Heinrich questions FDA leadership on baby formula safety, mifepristone

Heinrich questions FDA leadership on baby formula safety, mifepristone

U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Robert Califf answered questions about the safety of human milk formula and mifepristone on Wednesday. Sen. Martin…
FDA urged to relax decades-old tissue donation restrictions for gay and bisexual men

FDA urged to relax decades-old tissue donation restrictions for gay and bisexual men

By Rae Ellen Bichell The federal government in 2020 and 2023 changed who it said could safely donate organs and blood, reducing the restrictions…
Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham warned that banning contraceptives “could be next” when talking to a CNN host about New Mexico’s border and abortion issues.…
Study: Marriage equality has had a positive impact

Study: Marriage equality has had a positive impact

A recent study found that in the 20 years since Massachusetts became the first state in the U.S. to grant same-sex marriage licenses, same-sex…
State Ethics Commission sues Apodacas dark money operation

State Ethics Commission sues Apodacas dark money operation

By Marjorie Childress, New Mexico In Depth The State Ethics Commission on Friday sued a dark money group and its president, Jeff Apodaca, to force disclosure…
Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Lujan Grisham talks reproductive healthcare with CNN host

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham warned that banning contraceptives “could be next” when talking to a CNN host about New Mexico’s border and abortion issues.…
Senators throw support to embattled Ivey-Soto

Senators throw support to embattled Ivey-Soto

By Justin Horwath, New Mexico In Dept Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto is running for a fourth term despite the state Democratic Party’s decision to censure…
Death threats. Harassment. Intimidation. For New Mexico women, a life in politics can bring all three.

Death threats. Harassment. Intimidation. For New Mexico women, a life in politics can bring all three.

by Susanna Space, Searchlight New Mexico One Wednesday morning in April, Las Cruces City Councilor Johana Bencomo sat in a federal courtroom, watching with…
Stansbury outlines funding secured for early childhood and youth services programs

Stansbury outlines funding secured for early childhood and youth services programs

U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury secured $8.3 million for childhood development and youth services in the 1st congressional district through federal community project funding. Stansbury,…
BLM announces criteria for lands that the government might purchase

BLM announces criteria for lands that the government might purchase

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management announced the criteria for landowners to nominate private lands adjacent to public lands that can be sold or…

GET INVOLVED

© 2023 New Mexico Political Report