Race Inquiry Digest (May 20) – Important Current Stories On Race In America

Featured – 65 years since Brown v. Board of Ed, school segregation persists. By Janelle Richards, Rehema Ellis and Elissa Candiotti / NBC News

“One of the reasons we’ve returned to such high levels of segregation is we refuse to believe that separate is inherently unequal.” Elementary schools in Topeka, Kansas, that were once segregated are now landmark sites. That’s because the city was at the center of the fight for equal access to education 65 years ago in the historic Brown v. Board of Education ruling. Back then, the Supreme Court declared that school segregation was unequal and unconstitutional. But today, many fear that the promise of the ruling has not been fulfilled. Read more

Trump judicial nominees decline to endorse Brown v. Board under Senate questioning. By Laura Meckler and Robert Barnes / Wash Post

For months, a Democratic senator has been asking Trump judicial nominees what appears to be a straightforward question: Was Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark decision that ended legalized school segregation, properly decided? Legal scholars across the ideological spectrum say the answer is clearly yes. Still, more than two dozen nominees have declined to answer the question at a time when many schools remain segregated by race. Read more

White Supremacy Beyond a White Majority. By Charles M. Blow / NYT

We are living through a flagrant display of a white male exertion of power, authority and privilege, a demonstration meant to underscore that they will forcefully fight any momentum toward demographic displacement, no matter how inevitable the math. Read more

An Oral History of Trump’s Bigotry. By David A. Graham, Adrienne Green, Cullen Murphy and Parker Richards / The Atlantic

His racism and intolerance have always been in evidence; only slowly did he begin to understand how to use them to his advantage. Trump has assembled a long record of comment on issues involving African Americans as well as Mexicans, Hispanics more broadly, Native Americans, Muslims, Jews, immigrants, women, and people with disabilities. Instances of bigotry involving Donald Trump span more than four decades. The Atlantic interviewed a range of people with knowledge of several of those episodes. Their recollections have been edited for concision and clarity. Read more

A Trumpist Constitution? By Jedediah Britton-Purdy / Dissent

Conservative judges are advancing a vision of a country divided by religion, culture, and race, where Christians, white men, and corporate interests get special constitutional protection. We need a strategy to respond. Read more

Donald Trump: White welfare king and lord of the great grift. By Chauncey DeVega / Salon

Trump’s farm bailouts — to mitigate the effects of his tariffs — are essential to his strategy: Welfare for whites. Whiteness is a form of property that pays economic and other dividends to white people. Although all white people do not benefit in the same way from this fact, it is nonetheless one of the universal benefits that derives from being deemed “white” in America and other parts of the world. Read more

Koreatown, Little Saigon and South Asians: As Asian Americans diversified, so did their communities. By Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil / NBC News

The earliest Asian migrants to the United States were predominantly Chinese, Japanese and Filipino, but following the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which abolished a quota system that had limited immigration from non-western European countries, the Asian American population not only grew — it diversified. Read more

We Cannot Resign Ourselves to Dismay and Disenfranchisement. By Stacey Abrams / NYT

As more people of color claim political power, efforts to block them will accelerate — unless we act.  This is our ethos: Use the ballot box to create the change our communities need and deserve. In Georgia and across our country, voters deserve the right to pick their leaders and set the direction of our nation. And we shall not rest until this democracy is fully realized. Read more

How Rich White Men Win When Abortion Restrictions Become Law. By Jamil Smith / Rolling Stone

The Republican movement behind forced-birth bills is truly ignorance allied with power, as James Baldwin once warned us about. The rhetoric may be more vociferous and reckless now than it was when the religious right was first revving up, but it is no less cynical. Even if it escapes the lips or is written or signed into law by women like Governor Kay Ivey of Alabama, the primary goal of that revanchist talk has always been to take America back to a time when the word of white men went all but unquestioned. Read more

Black Women in Chicago, Getting Things Done. By Salamishah Tillet / NYT

On Monday, Chicago will make history when Lori Lightfoot becomes the city’s first black female mayor. This victory sits alongside other firsts: her recent runoff against Toni Preckwinkle, a black woman and the president of the Cook County Board of Commissioners, and the 2016 election of Kim Foxx, a black woman, as the city’s top prosecutor. Read more

Here’s What I’ve Learned From Being The Only Black Woman In The Conference Room. By Kell Hammond / HuffPost

If I had to find one word to describe my journey of management and leadership as a black woman, I’d go with “lonely” ― not your typical sad lonely, but more of an alienated lonely. An “I’m literally the only person in the room with this hair texture and this skin color” lonely. An “I’m representing an entire race of people” lonely. How I am perceived matters. Read more

SAT Adversity Index: A Drive Toward Diversity Without Discussing Race. By Anemona Hartocollis and Amy Harmon / NYT

The decision to give students who take the SAT test a numerical rating that reflects the challenges they have overcome in life is the most telling sign yet that universities across the country are searching for ways to diversify their classes without considering race or ethnicity. Read more

Why America Needs Its HBCUs. By Adam Harris / The Atlantic

A question that leads most conversations about historically black colleges goes something like this: The purpose of black colleges was clear before Brown vBoard of Education, but now that black students can attend any college, why are these schools necessary? The president of Howard University argues that “it is a danger to the national interest to not invest in these institutions.” Read more  

Populist alliances of ‘cowboys and Indians’ are protecting rural lands. By Zoltan Grossman / The Conversation

The sea of red on recent election maps make it look like rural areas are uniformly populated by Republicans. And conventional wisdom suggests that those Americans are largely conservative populists who question many government regulations and do not welcome cultural diversity. But the growing influence of Native American nations in some rural areas is starting to change that picture. Read more

Undistorting the Civil War. By Jamelle Bouie / NYT 

The new American Civil War Museum in Richmond, Va., sits next to the James River in the historic Tredegar district, where slaves and immigrants once produced munitions for the Confederate Army. The product of a merger of the American Civil War Center and the Museum of the Confederacy, the new museum seeks to tell an inclusive story of the war in hopes of dispelling some of the myths and misconceptions that still dominate popular understanding. Read more

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