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Virginians push to remember historically black high schools | The Washington Post

NORFOLK, Va. — Vivian Monroe-Hester’s high school textbooks harbored hatred in their margins. As a teenager at the all-black Booker T. Washington High School in segregated, 1960s-era Virginia, Monroe-Hester studied from used books passed along by white high schools. White students, knowing the texts’ final destination, scrawled their animus atop pictures, beneath paragraphs, between words. “They would leave us messages that were not quite right,” said Monroe-Hester, 71, who still lives in her hometown of Norfolk. “Racial things. Pictures of body parts.” But that’s not what she remembers — what she chooses to remember. Instead, Monroe-Hester recalls the joyful lunches, […]

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Remembering the 1968 Orangeburg Massacre When Police Shot Dead Three Unarmed Black Students | Democracy Now

The 1968 Orangeburg massacre is one of the most violent and least remembered events of the civil rights movement. A crowd of students gathered on the campus of South Carolina State University to protest segregation at Orangeburg’s only bowling alley. After days of escalating tensions, students started a bonfire and held a vigil on the campus to protest. Dozens of police arrived on the scene, and state troopers fired live ammunition into the crowd. When the shooting stopped, three students were dead and 28 wounded. Although the tragedy predated the Kent State shootings and Jackson State killings and it was […]

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When Minneapolis Segregated | City Lab

In the early 1900s, racial housing covenants in the Minnesota city blocked home sales to minorities, establishing patterns of inequality that persist today. Before it was torn apart by freeway construction in the middle of the 20th century, the Near North neighborhood in Minneapolis was home to the city’s largest concentration of African American families. That wasn’t by accident: As far back as the early 1900s, racially restrictive covenants on property deeds prevented African Americans and other minorities from buying homes in many other areas throughout the city. In 1948, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that such racial covenants were […]

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Does the United States Owe Reparations to the Descendants of Enslaved People? | The New York Times

The idea of economic amends for past injustices and persistent disparities is getting renewed attention. What do you think should happen? In 1988, President Ronald Reagan sought to “right a grave wrong” by signing legislation that apologized for the government’s forced relocation of 120,000 Japanese-Americans during World War II and established a $1.25 billion trust fund to pay reparations to those who were forced into internment camps and to their families. However, the United States has never apologized for the nation’s treatment of enslaved people and their descendants. What do you think? Do you think that the descendants of enslaved […]

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The Privilege of White Victimhood | Dame Magazine

We’re in the grips of a peak white-pity party moment. And it has the potential to incite a riot. Being an actual victim of anything sucks. This is a thing we are supposed to learn as we grow up. We’re supposed to grow out of the phase where we get jealous of the attention or the extra toys or balloons a sibling gets when they are sick or hurt and move on to being able to help out in those situations. Not everyone does. This past Saturday, Brian Hornaday, chief of the Herington Police Department in Kansas, posted an image […]

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Exploding Myths About ‘Black Power, Jewish Politics’ | NPR

Many Americans tell the story of Black-Jewish political relations like this: First, there was the Civil Rights movement, where the two groups got along great. This was the mid-1950s to the mid-60s — picture Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel and Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. marching arm-in-arm from Selma to Montgomery. And James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, murdered while organizing to register black voters in Mississippi. Then, the story goes, there was a shift. In the mid-’60s, with the rise of black nationalism (and what some describe as black anti-Semitism), “the once wonderful alliance dissolved and split. And since […]

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White people assume niceness is the answer to racial inequality. It’s not | The Guardian

“While most of us see ourselves as ‘not racist’, we continue to reproduce racist outcomes and live segregated lives.” I am white. As an academic, consultant and writer on white racial identity and race relations, I speak daily with other white people about the meaning of race in our lives. These conversations are critical because, by virtually every measure, racial inequality persists, and institutions continue to be overwhelmingly controlled by white people. While most of us see ourselves as “not racist”, we continue to reproduce racist outcomes and live segregated lives. In the racial equity workshops I lead for American […]

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Africa makes a scene: Best contemporary art fairs of 2020 | Al Jazeera

From South Africa to Morocco, fairs including new and established creatives are drawing art lovers and buyers alike. African art has been having a very long moment. Over the past 10 years, contemporary artists from the continent – from the Ghanaian sculptor El Anatsui to Kenyan artist Wangechi Mutu to South African photographer Zanele Muholi – have continued to build their names on the international stage. African artists have been presenting in major museums and galleries across Europe and the United States, while increasing numbers of African countries have shown at the prestigious Venice Biennale, including Ghana’s critically-acclaimed debut this […]

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Unita Blackwell Risked It All So Black Mississippians Could Vote | The New York Times Magazine

She was arrested dozens of times, and Klan members threw Molotov cocktails into her yard — but that didn’t stop her fight for civil rights. On an afternoon thick with Mississippi heat, Unita Blackwell sat on the front porch of her shotgun house with her friend Coreen, drinking homemade beer, waiting for something to happen. That’s when she saw them: two men — they looked to be about 19 — heading toward town. Blackwell knew they weren’t from around there. They walked too fast. No one walked fast in Mayersville on 90-degree days. They said, “Hello,” instead of the usual, […]

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When Nat King Cole moved in | Curbed, Los Angeles

The entertainer found his dream home in picturesque Hancock Park—but the neighborhood had a dark side. In July 1948, singer Nat “King” Cole and his new wife, Maria, were just beginning their lives together. The legendary crooner of standards including “The Christmas Song,” “Nature Boy,” “Mona Lisa,” and “Unforgettable” had spent the last decade of his young life on the road, and he was eager to settle down and start a family. When they were not traveling, he and Maria, a singer and socialite of impeccable lineage, made-do by staying at LA’s Watkins Hotel. So, Maria hired a real estate […]

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