Race Inquiry Digest (November 26) – Important Current Stories On Race In America

Featured – Why the Announcement of a Looming White Minority Makes Demographers Nervous.  

The graphic was splashy by the Census Bureau’s standards and it showed an unmistakable moment in America’s future: the year 2044, when white Americans were projected to fall below half the population and lose their majority status. In a nation preoccupied by race, the moment when white Americans will make up less than half the country’s population has become an object of fascination. Sabrina Tavrnise / NYT Read more Also see, Let’s Stop Using “White” and “Black” to Describe European-Americans and African-Americans : Here Are The Reasons Why – Ronald J Sheehy 

Sigrid Johnson Was Black. A DNA Test Said She Wasn’t.

The surge in popularity of services like 23andMe and Ancestry means that more and more people are unearthing long-buried connections and surprises in their ancestry. Ruth Padawer / NYT Read more   Also see, Tracing my African American genealogy – Kenyatta D. Berry / Salon

In every tally of hate crimes, blacks are the most frequent victims.

In a recent interview, Michelle Obama helped illuminate an element of black American life rarely discussed in the absence of massive tragedy and more often dismissed or downplayed: the constant threat of violence based on hatred. Mourners lay flowers in front of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, one of the nation’s oldest black churches, where nine people were killed during a prayer meeting in Charleston, South Carolina in 2015. Jenell Ross / NBC News Read more

The Injustice of Siwatu Ra’s Imprisonment and the Relentless Logic of Mass Incarceration.

A story can defy belief and appear ordinary at the same time. This is such a story. Siwatu Ra, a twenty-six-year-old woman with no prior criminal record, was sentenced by a Detroit court, in March, to two years in prison on felonious assault and felony firearm charges, after brandishing a gun at another woman during an argument. Shown is Siwatu Ra, who gave birth to her son while she was incarcerated, was reunited with her family after being released from prison on bond. Masha Gessen / The New Yorker Read more
Letter from a Region in My Mind by James Baldwin.

From 1962: “Whatever white people do not know about Negroes reveals, precisely and inexorably, what they do not know about themselves.” The New Yorker / November 17, 1962. Read more

Theaters are filled with films telling black stories. It’s about time.

When “Green Book” played before a packed house at the Middleburg Film Festival last month, you could feel the room levitate. The movie stars Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali as the real-life characters Tony “Lip” Vallelonga and the pianist Don Shirley, who in the early 1960s hired Vallelonga to drive him during a tour through the South. Ann Hornaday / Wash Post Read more Also see, Green Book’ Makes the White Man the Hero Says Family of the Film’s Star Dr. Don Shirley – Daryl Nelson / Atlanta Black Star 

The Asian-American case against Harvard: What to watch for.

The affirmative action case against Harvard brought on behalf of Asian-American students has entered an important second phase, as both sides face December deadlines for final submissions to US District Judge Allison Burroughs. Joan Biskupic / CNN Read more

Trump’s Racism Doesn’t Have To Be A Political Strategy. Sometimes It’s Just Racism.

President Donald Trump will travel to Mississippi to stump for a candidate who spoke favorably of lynching and voter disenfranchisement. Ja’han Jones / Salon Read more

Across South, Democrats Who Speak Boldly Risk Alienating Rural White Voters.

The campaigns of Stacey Abrams in Georgia, Andrew Gillum in Florida and Beto O’Rourke in Texas may have electrified black and progressive white voters — just as Ms. Hyde-Smith’s comments may energize Mississippians to support Mr. Espy — but they had an equal and opposite effect as well: in rural county after rural county, this trio of next-generation Democrats performed worse than President Barack Obama did in 2012. Jonathan Martin / NYT Read more

Olivia Hooker, one of the last survivors of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, dies at 103.

Olivia Hooker called it “The Catastrophe,” the notorious 48 hours of fire and death that leveled “Black Wall Street” in Tulsa. She was 6 at the time of the Tulsa Race Massacre, which erupted on May 31, 1921, when a white lynch mob descended on the courthouse where a black teenager was being held. Deneen L. Brown / Wash Post Read more

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