by Emma Ockerman | June 2021
Over the past year, a number of teachers in the United States have been punished for daring to acknowledge the existence of systemic racism in a country with a legacy of enslaving, segregating, and disproportionately jailing Black people. From Florida to Massachusetts to Texas, educators have reportedly faced retaliation such as reassignment, backlash from parents, and even administrative leave over actions like refusing to take down a Black Lives Matter flag and telling students that “many cops are racist.”
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Systemic Racism] [Policing] [Black Lives Matter] [CRT] [Teachers] [Politics] [Denial] [Silencing POC]
by Allison Gaines | May 2021
Our nation is in the process of exchanging color-blind ideology with anti-racism. White people will have to take a good, hard look in the mirror and into their family albums. Some are afraid of the skeletons they will find, and others are leery of the theory that will make them take a look in the first place. White people want to focus on selected parts of American history, lionizing their role. Many choose to ignore that the gap between Black and white homeownership is wider than it was 50 years ago. Or that Black families have one-tenth the wealth as white ones. Currently, Black people are 3.25 times more likely to die in police encounters.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2020’s] [History] [Policing] [White Privilege] [White Culture] [White Defensiveness] [White Supremacy] [White Blindness] [Denial] [Racial Covenants] [Housing] [Health Disparities] [Economics] [Politics] [Social Justice] [Definitions] [Intersectionality] [Colorblindness] [Tips-Dos/Don’ts] [CRT] [Accountability] [Slavery]
by Robin Washington | June 2021
If you saw my column about Juneteenth posted here over the last few days, or a previous version on the website of Be’chol Lashon several years ago, or a video version currently presented by Be’chol Lashon, you would know I had bittersweet feelings about the history of the day. I no longer do. I am outraged by it. My change in emotion comes after learning from historian friends that the oft-repeated tale of Union soldiers arriving in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865 to inform enslaved African Americans that they were free is pure fiction. Not because they weren’t legally freed 2-½ months earlier when Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox. Or technically freed 2-1/2 years before when President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring slavery null and void in areas under rebellion, very much including Texas.
TAGS: [Assumptions] [2020’s] [History] [Slavery] [Myths] [Racial Terrorism] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [Systemic Racism] [Social Justice]
by Michael Harriot | June 2021
Now that Juneteenth is a federal holiday, we created a CRT-free educational curriculum to help colonizer Americans resist the urge to gentrify this celebration. Hold up, white people. Now that you have officially discovered Juneteenth,* you need to become familiar with the traditions, customs and history lest you succumb to the Caucasian colonization gene and gentrify this auspicious celebration. Before hopping on the Juneteenth bandwagon, you first need to realize that you have no say in driving the narrative about this special day. Left to your devices, Juneteenth might become a day when you parade around in African headwraps drinking Hennessy just like y’all celebrate Mexican Independence Day on May 5 by donning sombreros and taking shots of American tequila.** So, to protect the legacy of this special day, The Root created this handy-dandy guide to help you become familiar with existing in spaces you don’t own.
TAGS: [Individual Change] [2020’s] [Tip’s-Dos/Don’ts] [History] [Slavery] [Definitions]
by Julianne McShane | June 2021
The episode renewed calls to #CiteBlackWomen, many of whom have been leading research on AI bias. The 13-minute-long segment, which aired May 16, reported on how facial recognition technologies have led to the wrongful arrests of Black men. It featured interviews with two White experts in facial recognition technologies as well as two Black men who were wrongfully arrested based on faulty facial recognition. Joy Buolamwini, an artificial intelligence bias researcher at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Black woman, was not featured in the episode after spending what she said were between eight and 10 hours working with “60 Minutes” producers over the course of a few months, recommending research to incorporate and even building a custom demo program showing how facial recognition technologies analyze faces, she said.
TAGS: [Strategies] [2020’s] [Policing] [Systemic Racism] [Justice System] [Prison System] [Social Justice] [Silencing POC] [Implicit Bias] [White Culture] [White Blindness]
by Jaden Urban | July 2021
…But on that day in the 1990s, Williams asked Weeks if she could have a private moment with her. Once they were alone, the coach warned her that the team they were about to play had a racially based mascot, the Indians. Williams knew Weeks’ heritage and culture and wanted to let her know before the game, so she wouldn’t be surprised. “Hey, when we go in there, this is something you might potentially see,” Williams told her. “I just want to talk to you about this, warn you, and get you mentally prepared. There are some things you’re going to have to block out.”
TAGS: [Collective Action] [2020’s] [Indigenous] [Systemic Racism] [Social Justice] [History] [Role Model] [Racial Terrorism] [Politics] [White Supremacy] [White Culture] [White Blindness]