Race Inquiry Digest (March 28) – Important Current Stories On Race In America

Featured – Cornell Belcher schools progressives on what it will take to win the White House in 2020. Stephanie Griffith / ThinkProgress

A lot of ink has been spilled about the changes the United States of America faces in 2045, when according to demographers, the country will cross a threshold: Its black and brown citizens will outnumber white ones. Author and demographer Cornell Belcher has a news flash for us: The future is now. The impact of a rapidly expanding voting populace of color is not something to brace for decades down the road, according to Belcher. It is already being felt, more so with each new election cycle. Case in point? The primary vote contests that every four years crown each party’s presidential nominee. Read more

(We digress) William Barr Reads “Moby-Dick,” Finds No Evidence of Whales. By Andy Borowitz / The New Yorker

Attorney General William Barr has just read the classic American novel “Moby-Dick,” by Herman Melville, and found that the book contains “no evidence whatsoever of whales,” Barr stated on Tuesday. Read more

It’s Bigger Than Mueller and Trump. By Charles M. Blow / NYT

Trumpism follows a historical pattern: Whenever black people make progress, white people respond forcefully. Read more

What Should Stacey Abrams Do? By Bob Moser / The New Republic

Abrams ran on tangible progressive issues rather than airy liberal rhetoric. She raised record money. She came within a whisker of winning not just thanks to her own considerable charisma, but also because she’d spent years leading an unprecedented voter-registration effort, known as the New Georgia Project, and ultimately brought out 800,000 more Democratic voters in 2018 than in the 2014 midterms. Read more

Segregation Has Been the Story of New York City’s Schools for 50 Years. By Eliza Shapiro / NYT

New York City is starkly different today than it was 50 years ago. It is politically more liberal, and far more racially diverse. Yet one aspect has barely changed: The city’s public schools remain among the most segregated in the nation. Read more

We need more teachers of color, so why do we use tests that keep them out of the classroom? By Emery Petchauer / The Conversation

Students of color seldom see teachers who look like them. This is because many aspiring teachers of color are pushed out of the profession before they have a chance to start. It’s not poor performance in college courses or teaching internships that take the biggest toll. It is the standardized tests aspiring teachers must pass to earn a teaching license. Read more

America’s legacy of racial terror and Charles W. Chesnutt’s “The Marrow of Tradition.” By Wiley Cash / Salon

One evening, while teaching a creative writing workshop at the University of North Carolina-Asheville, I had a student ask me which writer was the most intelligent in the history of American literature. Of course each person’s answer to this question is completely subjective, but I gave it a shot anyway.“Charles W. Chesnutt,” I said. “He was a genius.” Read more 

‘A State of Emergency’: Native Americans Stranded for Days by Flooding. By Mitch Smith / NYT

On the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, extreme weather and bad roads have left some residents stranded for nearly two weeks with limited food and water. Read more

Effort to Legalize Marijuana in New Jersey Collapses. By Nick Corasaniti / NYT

Among the most vocal opponents were a handful of African-American Democratic lawmakers who split with their party over legalization, arguing that it would be a public health menace to their communities. Read more

Unequal Justice: The Supreme Court Tackles Political Gerrymandering, Again. By Bill Blum / The Progressive

These cases deal with the constitutionality of “partisan gerrymandering”—the hotly disputed practice by which many states design voting districts to help entrench the majority political party in power. Read more

Who has the best hair in the NCAA tournament? By Jessie Washington / The Undefeated

It’s tough to be unique in this era of peak hair expression. Ever since Duke won the 2015 national championship and sparked the “Duke Starting Five” haircut trend, anything goes. But some dudes won’t be denied, and it seems like some of the best teams this postseason have players with the best hair — follicles that attract attention and accentuate their games. Watch here

Jordan Peele’s “Us” Goes Down the Rabbit Hole of Identity. By Josephine Livingstone / The New Republic

Us is stranger than Get Out, with deeper philosophical undercurrents flowing through it. The rabbit that greets you at the movie’s start is an invitation. Will you follow, like Alice in her Wonderland? The journey will be at your peril—there’s no telling how deep the rabbit hole goes. Read more

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