Race Inquiry Digest (July 9) – Important Current Stories On Race In America

Feature – These young black women made desegregation possible. We need to learn from their example. Black students are provided with a military escort at Little Rock Central High School, Arkansas, following the school’s desegregation, 1957. To honor what these girls accomplished, we must learn from their example: Reversing racist laws is possible. A wary public can be convinced that radical social change is possible. As plaintiff Doris Raye Brewer put it: “Don’t be satisfied where you are if you can get to another place. Don’t ever think you’ve arrived. Just keep on pluggin’.” Read more 

Here’s What’s Going On With Affirmative Action And School Admissions. School may be out, but there has been no lack of news this summer on race and admissions: an announcement from Jeff Sessions, a Harvard lawsuit, changes in the Supreme Court and proposals for selective high schools in New York City. Here’s a rundown of the facts in place, and the latest developments. Read more 
“Whitney” director on Houston’s untold story: “Whitney had been abused, and it took a huge toll.” “Whitney” director Kevin Macdonald talks to Salon about making a documentary about the woman behind the voice. Read more  

White Extinction Anxiety : Lessons for America in the age of Donald Trump. Dividing the country  based on racial fears and anxiety is exactly what Donald Trump wants. Read more 

Jay-Z Would Like You to Watch the Trailer for Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story. Paramount Network docuseries will portray the shooting of 17-year-old Martin in February 2012. The shooter, George Zimmerman, was infamously acquitted of all charges after he claimed self-defense under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law. The trial sparked protests across the country, and is largely considered the catalyst to the #BlackLivesMatter movement. Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story will air Monday, July 30 at 10/9c on BET. Read and Watch

LeBron James and the NBA teach us a lot about labor in America. At three critical junctures in his career, James dictated the terms of his employment to the league’s billionaire owners. But James’s career also reveals the limits of labor autonomy in an infrastructure with such a power imbalance. Read more 

The disappearing story of the black homesteaders who pioneered the West. Ever heard of Blackdom in New Mexico? Dearfield in Colorado? What about DeWitty in Nebraska? Didn’t think so. Neither had I several years ago. But they were once vibrant African American homesteading communities. Today their buildings are falling to ruin, their locations are mostly unmarked, and the achievements of their pioneers are mostly forgotten. Read more 

Documentary “The King”: “The American people are Elvis. They have been hoodwinked.”I never thought Elvis was the king of anything. I grew up in the era of hip-hop and fact checking, so we knew he got famous off of black music and we were bold enough to scream that in front of the most die-hard Elvis fans. But Elvis was bigger than his artistic endeavors; he was a representation of the American Dream and the end of an era, with a personal story that goes way deeper than the music and the films he made. Read more 

How do Americans really feel about interracial couples?  According to the most recent U.S. census, approximately 15 percent of all newlywed couples are interracial. More interracial relationships are also appearing in the media – on television, in film and in advertising. Read more   

Reggae’s sacred roots and call to protest injustice. Reggae is the most popular musical expression of Rastafari, a belief system that took hold in the 1930s among poor, rural Jamaicans of African descent, who had immigrated to Kingston, where they felt alienated from roots and traditions. Read more   

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