Race Inquiry Digest (October 18) – Important Current Stories On Race In America

Feature – If You’re Not Scared About Fascism in the U.S., You Should Be. While calling President Trump a fascist may seem like an exaggeration, it might not be that far from the truth. Should we be worried? Jason Stanley has spent the past decade studying fascism, from Mussolini to Duterte. In this video op-ed, he argues that yes, we should be worried: If Americans are not vigilant, fascism could become a new reality in the United States. Jason Stanley, Adam Westbrook and Japhet Weeks / NYT Watch here 

When Americans tried to breed a better race: How a genetic fitness ‘crusade’ marches on.The Eugenics Crusade,” an American Experience film that premiers on PBS Tuesday night, recounts how America responded to those fears. The country’s leaders tried to breed a better race, and millions of American citizens were enthusiastic backers. It was an ugly time. John Blake / CNN Read more

The Underlying Attack in the Harvard Admissions Lawsuit. At its core, the lawsuit reflects the American conservative movement’s legal and political assault on people of color, which has been endorsed and abetted by President Trump. Jeffrey Toobin / The New Yorker Read more 

I’m an Asian-American Harvard Alumnus. Affirmative Action Works. Shown are student supporting Harvard’s admissions policy in Cambridge, Mass., on Sunday. In federal court on Monday, Harvard defended the policy against charges that it discriminated against Asian-American students. Robert Rhew / NYT Read more

Voter suppression efforts are increasing across America. It’s time for a new Voting Rights Act.  Access to the franchise has faced limits throughout American history; making good on the promise of democracy requires ending state officials’ ability to be picky and selective. Daniel Nichanian / NBC News Read more

How Pocahontas — the myth and the slur — props up white supremacy. The roots of the attacks on Elizabeth Warren. Trump’s choice of “Pocahontas” as a nickname reflects a deeply complicated history of ancestry and white racial fantasy. Honor Sachs / NYT Read more

A new study reveals the real reason Obama voters switched to Trump. One of the most puzzling elements of the 2016 election, at least for a lot of Americans, was the millions of voters who switched from voting for Barack Obama in 2012 to Donald Trump in 2016. Hint: It has to do with race. Zack Beauchamp / Vox Read more 

A Place for Ida B. Wells at Ole Miss. The university should rename its school of journalism after this intrepid reporter. The University of Mississippi stands at yet another crossroads where it can decide whether to perpetuate the bigotry of the past or move toward an inclusive future. Jemer Tisby / NYT Read more 


Historian Explains Sears’ Surprisingly Radical Role in Dismantling Jim Crow Laws. “Every time a black southerner went to the local store, they were confronted with forced deference to white customers who would be served first…. The stores were not self-service, so the black customers would have to wait. But the Sears catalog, Hyman added, “undid the power of the storekeeper, and by extension the landlord” by allowing black families to buy “without asking permission. Without waiting. Without being watched.” Alex Henderson /AlterNet Read more 

Goodbye and good riddance to the Cleveland Indians’ Chief Wahoo. Chief Wahoo has been a Cleveland Indians fixture since the 1940s but became the target of mounting protests, particularly from Native American communities rightly offended by the grinning, red-faced cartoon. Editorial Board / Wash Post Read more 

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