A recent study from the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism (CSHE) at Cal State, San Bernardino noted a “12 percent rise in hate crimes over 2016 in 38 of our nation’s largest cities.” Both before and after the 2016 presidential election, I was an instructor of nonviolent de-escalation of public conflicts. […]
Hearing families who have been impacted by police violence speak is always a transformative and powerful experience for me. While I have been working with impacted families since 2009, the novelty remains as if I am hearing them for the first time. However, inviting audiences to listen to impacted families is a difficult endeavor that […]
There have been at least 23 school shootings in America this year, so far. That’s an average of one school shooting a week. While recent media coverage has focused on the young white victims of high-profile mass shootings like the Feb. 14 massacre at Parkland, Florida high school, for the black community, gun violence is […]
Family, friends and supporters of police violence victim Keith Childress, Jr. demand justice for his murder. His mother, Jacqueline Lawrence, lives in Phoenix, Arizona, which makes advocating for her son difficult, but she has started to meet other families impacted by police violence.
A good friend of mine commented on his Facebook page about the now viral video of the “Starbucks arrest incident,” which showed two black men being arrested in a Philadelphia Starbucks for (frankly) nothing more than being black men. My friend wrote, “I don’t know where black men are getting the idea they can peacefully occupy […]
This week marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. And it is making me even more reflective of what it means to be black at this moment in this country. It is unavoidable in America when you are black or brown that you have to deal with racism. It’s built […]
This piece originally published in the Memphis Commercial Appeal. When President Lyndon B. Johnson launched the War on Poverty in 1964, his audacious goal was to end poverty in the richest country in the world by our bicentennial in 1976. Four years later, assassins killed two of the most powerful voices of this movement, and […]
Several weeks ago, a gentleman came to a Progressive Leadership Alliance Nevada (PLAN) meeting and asked for help restoring his right to vote. After 12 years, he was now eligible, but he needed assistance navigating our state’s incredibly complicated voting restoration laws. As I listened to this older White gentleman talk about his desire to […]
I fear Nevada – and our entire country – is treading on its racist history.
Our president’s mantra is to “make America great again.” Many of us interpret this campaign slogan as a desire to return to the past, a time when White men ruled and White supremacists terrorized people of color.
“I love this shit.” That’s what White County, Tenn. Sheriff Oddie Shoupe said after ordering one of his deputies to open fire on Michael Dial, a man who was attempting to flee police because he had a suspended driver’s license. “I said don’t ram him ― shoot him,” Shoupe is heard saying in a video. […]
It is my belief that for black Americans, and other people of color in America, dealing with racism is unavoidable. It is built into the economic structure. It is sewn into the social fabric by negative stereotypes of people of color. However, the optimist in me hopes the nation is gradually growing more aware of […]
This article first appeared on The Progressive. The June 21 shooting of a black police officer in St. Louis County by another officer has been described as “friendly fire.” That’s a laughably absurd euphemism for this latest racial incident. A 38-year-old off-duty officer, with eleven years on the force, heard a commotion in his north St. Louis […]
As we walked through St. Louis’ Missouri Historical Museum’s current civil rights exhibit, I was reminded of how change comes from the bottom up. School history is, too often, from the top down: photos of presidents and legislators signing documents with big names, almost always male, with obligatory self-congratulatory rhetoric. Organizing and challenging the status […]