TRENDING - 2020

What Coronavirus Job Losses Reveal About Racism in America

10/11/20 - ProPublica - Lena V. Groeger

The economic and health crisis brought on by the pandemic has struck Black Americans especially hard: from their prevalence among workers in essential high-risk fields, to their disproportionate share of deaths, to extensive job losses. But the racial disparities didn’t begin with the virus. National unemployment numbers that now seem unprecedented for workers as a whole have been a daily reality for many Black communities for decades.


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Limited African American Progress After the Civil War

10/11/20 - IBW21

You Are Here: Home » Reparations » How the Black Codes Limited African American Progress After the Civil War How the Black Codes Limited African American Progress After the Civil War The black codes effectively continued enslavement for African Americans by restricting their rights and exploiting their labor.


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Panelists delve into protest coverage, upcoming election during virtual speaker series

10/07/20 - The Commonwealth Times - The Independent Press of Virginia Commonwealth University

Sagal Ahmed, Contributing Writer

The Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture kicked off its speaker series Tuesday with a discussion on race, media, and the 2020 election. Five panelists spoke in the event, moderated by VCU associate professor of journalism Aloni Hill and Robb Crocker, a podcaster, digital journalist and doctoral student in VCU’s Media, Art and Text Program.

Panelists were Kym Grinnage, Danita Rountree Green (our own co-CEO), Samantha Willis, Calvin Anthony Duncan and Elliott Robinson.


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Racial unrest, sports protests continue the ‘outcry for racial and social justice’

10/07/20 - VCU News

"Issues brought to the forefront by protests and racial unrest this year have created a rebirth of the civil rights movement, according to a panel of Richmond journalists and African American leaders. [including our own Coming To The Table - RVA's co-CEO Danita Rountree Green!]

The death of George Floyd brought race and racial issues to the forefront, Kym Grinnage, vice president and general manager at NBC 12, said Tuesday during an online forum hosted by the Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture in the College of Humanities and Sciences at Virginia Commonwealth University and the VCU chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists.

“Before the George Floyd murder, you would not hear the subject of racism talked about publically in media as well as in offices around the country and the kitchen table with different people of different races,” Grinnage said. “That was something that was pretty much taboo.”....


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California passes landmark law to study proposals for reparations

10/01/20 - ABC News - Catherine Thorbecke

California became the first state to pass a law establishing a task force to study and make recommendations on reparations for Black Americans.

The landmark legislation calls for the creation of a nine-member commission to "inform Californians about slavery and explore ways the state might provide reparations," according to a statement from Gov. Gavin Newsom's office.


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Their Family Bought Land One Generation After Slavery. Licurtis Reels, left, and Melvin Davis. The Reels Brothers Spent Eight Years in Jail for Refusing to Leave It.

9/29/20 - ProPublica and The New Yorker - Lizzie Presser

“There is this idea that most blacks were lynched because they did something untoward to a young woman. That’s not true. Most black men were lynched between 1890 and 1920 because whites wanted their land.”


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This Is the Casual Racism That I Face at My Elite High School

9/24/20 - The New York Times - Rainier Harris

Starting senior year in the middle of a pandemic has brought on more challenges than ever: Navigating college applications and maintaining my G.P.A. while dealing with Zoom burnout and no physical connection to my friends.

I attend Regis, the academically rigorous Catholic high school on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. To those who get in, it is tuition-free, and it is regularly recognized as one of the top high schools in the country.

So it is more than a little troubling that I know I will have to deal with casual racism at such an institution. Even as classes have started remotely, the racism that many Black students like me have experienced and continue to experience in school feels more emotionally draining than ever.


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A Neighborhood’s Race Affects Home Values More Now Than in 1980

9/23/20 - City Lab - Brentin Mock

U.S. fair housing laws passed in the 1960s and ‘70s were supposed to help bring racial parity to a housing market that since its beginning confined Black homebuyers to the cheapest forms of housing in the most undesirable neighborhoods. But since those laws were passed, the disparity in the appraised values between homes in majority-white and predominantly non-white neighborhoods has widened dramatically, according to a new study.


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The Question White Parents Should Be Asking

9/22/20 - San Antonio Review - Margaret A. Hagerman

This past summer, white parents across the United States have repeatedly asked the same question: “How should I talk to my white child about race?” In response, parenting magazine writers, bloggers and newspaper columnists have framed article after article as responses to this question. Again and again, social scientists who study families have been bombarded by mainstream media requests to respond to this same query: “What advice do you have for white parents on how they can talk to their white kid about racism in America?”


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Maryland Episcopal diocese commits $1 million toward reparations for slavery, racial injustice

9/21/20 - BALTIMORE SUN - JONATHAN M. PITTS

The Maryland diocese of the Episcopal Church has become the latest religious institution to commit to making reparations for slavery and systemic racism, voting over the weekend to create a $1 million seed fund for programs that would benefit the African American community in Baltimore and beyond.


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Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Champion Of Gender Equality, Dies At 87

9/18/20 - NPR - NINA TOTENBERG

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the demure firebrand who in her 80s became a legal, cultural and feminist icon, died Friday. The Supreme Court announced her death, saying the cause was complications from metastatic cancer of the pancreas.

The court, in a statement, said Ginsburg died at her home in Washington, D.C., surrounded by family. She was 87.


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Spotlight on LaToya Gray Sparks the winner of ESRI’s 2020 Educational Map Contest

9/17/20 - Richmond Free Press -

LaToya Gray Sparks’ digital story map of how Richmond’s first master plan impacted Black residents contains a wealth of information.

And it has been recognized by the Environmental Systems Research Institute with a first place award in the institute’s 2020 Educational Map Contest.

“I thought that I was going to pass out on my floor!” says Ms. Sparks, describing her reaction to the news of her win. “I had to pinch myself to ensure that I was not dreaming. I could not believe it!”

The map is part of an interactive project, “Planned Destruction: A brief history on land ownership, valuation and development in the City of Richmond and the maps used to destroy black communities.”


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Louisville Agrees To $12 Million Settlement With Breonna Taylor's Family

9/15/20 - NPR - BRAKKTON BOOKER

The city of Louisville, Ky., announced a $12 million settlement Tuesday in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of Breonna Taylor.

The settlement also includes a series of police reforms to be adopted by the Louisville Metro Police Department, including establishing a housing incentive program to encourage officers to live in low-income neighborhoods within the city.

Other changes to police tactics include creating a clearer command structure when executing warrants at multiple locations.


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Summer of Change

9/03/20 - Style Weekly - SCOTT ELMQUIST

“I had just come off a week of furlough and was eager to begin documenting the protests again. That evening, there was a Juneteenth celebration happening at the Robert E. Lee Monument in Richmond, Virginia. The grounds of Lee Circle were busy. Most people were gathered on the south side of the monument listening to speakers. I left the crowd, circled the monument and saw the young boys playing pickup. Just then the sun peeked through the clouds and provided great evening light. The hoop was aligned perfectly with the heavily graffitied monument. I knew when I made this image I was witnessing a sea change in Richmond’s history, as a young boy wearing an ‘I Am My Ancestors’ Wildest Dreams’ shirt soared high on one of the most hallowed grounds of Confederate legacy. Only a few years earlier, I had photographed hundreds of people in the exact same spot with Confederate flags, at a Sons of Confederate Veterans Heritage Rally, so I never thought I would see this moment.”


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The Great White Heist

8/29/20 - Yes Magazine - MICHAEL HARRIOT

The Black parents were disproportionately paying for white students’ beautiful new schools and the comfort in which they engaged in learning. And this phenomenon wasn’t unique to Summerton. Even though South Carolina was 40% Black in 1948, statewide, Black schools were worth $12.9 million while white schools were worth $68.4 million. If those white students succeeded in their resource-filled schools, they could go on to one of more than a dozen public institutions of higher learning in South Carolina.


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America Shouldn’t Need Black Athletes to Force Its Hand

8/29/20 - SI - ROHAN NADKARNI

But for the crowd that wants to know what players were hoping to accomplish, or what their demands are, or what solutions they’re offering up, the truth is, none of that is the players’ responsibility. Whether what happened Wednesday was a strike or an opportunity to mentally refocus, Black people have been bringing attention to the issues in this country long before anyone took a knee or sat out a playoff game. The burden shouldn’t be on Black people, or Black athletes, specifically, to continue to risk their social standing over issues others are being willfully ignorant about.


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NBA delays playoff games after Milwaukee Bucks don't take floor in apparent protest of Jacob Blake shooting

8/26/20 - NBC - By David K. Li and Tim Stelloh

The National Basketball Association postponed Wednesday's playoff games after the Milwaukee Bucks did not take the floor for a game against the Orlando Magic in an apparent protest over the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Wisconsin.


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Clint Smith: To Protest And To Reckon With Racism In America

8/21/20 - NPR - Clint Smith

The killing of George Floyd by a police officer sparked massive protests nationwide. Writer, teacher, and scholar Clint Smith reflects on that moment through conversation, letters, and poetry. A version of this segment was originally heard in the June episode, Clint Smith.


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It's More Than Racism: Isabel Wilkerson Explains America's 'Caste' System

8/11/20 - NPR - Terry Gross

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson says racism is an insufficient term for the systemic oppression of Black people in America. Instead, she prefers to refer to America as having a "caste" system.

Wilkerson describes caste an artificial hierarchy that helps determine standing and respect, assumptions of beauty and competence, and even who gets benefit of the doubt and access to resources.


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How To Tell Someone You Love They're Being Racist

8/06/20 - Amnesty International Australia - Kim Gillan

Knowing how to respond to racist remarks from friends and relatives can be a minefield. On the one hand, you want to call them out for their misinformed bigotry but doing so can lead to an argument or awkwardness, without actually convincing them to change their view.


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Responding to Microaggressions and Bias

8/06/20 - Diane J. Goodman, Ed.D.

Adapted from: Goodman, D. (2011). "Promoting Diversity and Social Justice: Educating People from Privileged Groups."


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Slavery and salvation: Modern churches reckon with history in the trade

8/02/20 - Daily Press - Denise M. Watson

Parishioners at Old Donation Episcopal Church in Virginia Beach were shocked — and dismayed — when their congregation’s records showed that their 383-year-old church once owned slaves.


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Coach K sends powerful message about social justice

8/01/20 - ESPN

Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski sends a message about fighting for social justice.


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White Christian America Needs a Moral Awakening

7/28/20 - The Atlantic - Robert P. Jones

The Christian denomination in which I grew up was founded on the proposition that slavery could flourish alongside the gospel of Jesus Christ. Its founders believed that this arrangement was not just possible, but divinely mandated. Yet many white Christians, like myself, came of age in churches and communities where we seldom heard anything substantive or serious about the white-supremacist roots of our faith.


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How Jesus became white – and why it’s time to cancel that

7/24/20 - Richmond Free Press - Emily McFarlan Miller

The first time the Rev. Lettie Moses Carr saw Jesus depicted as Black, she was in her 20s.

It felt “weird,” Rev. Carr said.

Until that moment, she’d always thought Jesus was white.

At least that’s how he appeared when she was growing up. A copy of Warner E. Sallman’s “Head of Christ” painting hung in her home, depicting a gentle Jesus with blue eyes turned heavenward and dark blond hair cascading over his shoulders in waves.The painting, which has been reproduced a billion times, came to define what the central figure of Christianity looked like for generations of Christians in the United States and beyond.


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A Texas town just removed a fence separating historically segregated cemeteries

7/21/20 - CNN - Alisha Ebrahimji

A 60-year-old chain link fence at a cemetery in Texas has just come down. And while its removal may seem unremarkable, for community members, that fence was a reminder of segregation that once existed in the town.

A metal barrier was the separation between burial areas at Cedars Memorial Gardens in Mineola, Texas, a town about 80 miles east of Dallas. Black people were buried on one side while Whites were buried on another. Each side is owned by a separate cemetery association, not by the city.

Over the past 20 years the issue of the fence had come up off and on, Mercy Rushing, Mineola city manager, told CNN. There was an effort in the past by citizens, with the help of the city, to ask the cemetery associations to consider removing this fence, but it didn't happen until recently -- on July 15.


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John Lewis - Get in the Way

7/19/20 - PBS -

Follow the journey of civil rights hero, congressman and human rights champion John Lewis. At the Selma March, Lewis came face-to-face with club-wielding troopers and exemplified non-violence.


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C.T. Vivian, Civil Rights Leader And Champion Of Nonviolent Action, Dies At 95

7/19/20 - NPR - Colin Dwyer

For the Rev. C.T. Vivian, a jail cell was about as familiar as a police officer's fist. For his work during the height of the civil rights movement, the minister and activist was arrested more times than he cared to count and suffered several brutal beatings at the hands of officers throughout the South.

All the while, he held fast to one principle: "In no way would we allow nonviolence to be destroyed by violence," he recalled in an oral history recorded in 2011.


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Author: Black Women's Experiences With Police Brutality Must Be 'Invisible No More'

7/17/20 - NPR - BRIANNA SCOTT

Breonna Taylor's death, along with George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks, has intensified the calls for police reform that are at the center of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Taylor's case has also reignited conversations about centering Black women's experiences with the police and sparked the Say Her Name campaign to include Black women in the larger conversation surrounding racial justice in America.


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Racism Has An Economic Cost, Atlanta Fed President Warns

7/17/20 - NPR - Emma Bowman

Raphael Bostic, president and CEO of the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank, says racism is a danger to the health of America's economy.

In a recent opinion piece, Bostic reflected on the recent protests against police brutality that he says are fueled, in part, by economic inequalities that stem from systemic racism.


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Hanover School Board votes to change name of Lee-Davis High, Stonewall Jackson Middle schools

7/15/20 - Richmond Times Dispatch - C. SUAREZ ROJAS

A pair of Hanover County schools will no longer be named for Confederate leaders, the Hanover School Board decided Tuesday in a split 4-3 vote.

The decision followed years of debate that again boiled over this summer following nationwide protests over racial injustice prompted by the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd. The board did not discuss any possible replacement names.


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In historic move, North Carolina city approves reparations for Black residents

7/15/20 - Asheville Citizen Times - Joel Burgess

ASHEVILLE, N.C. – In an extraordinary move, the Asheville City Council has apologized for the North Carolina city's historic role in slavery, discrimination and denial of basic liberties to Black residents and voted to provide reparations to them and their descendants.

The 7-0 vote came the night of July 14.

"Hundreds of years of black blood spilled that basically fills the cup we drink from today," said Councilman Keith Young, one of two African American members of the body and the measure's chief proponent.

"It is simply not enough to remove statutes. Black people in this country are dealing with issues that are systemic in nature," Young said.


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The Call for Reparations Is Ringing Out Again. Can Durham Get It Done?

7/15/20 - INDY Week

At the height of the civil rights protests during the 1960s, a question emerged among members of the white press who were attempting to understand Black anger and unrest: What does the Negro want?

In fact, the question had been answered 100 years before, at the end of the Civil War, when Union General William T. Sherman and Secretary of War Edwin Stanton traveled to Savannah, Georgia, and asked Rev. Garrison Frazier, a native of Granville County, what he and other freedmen would need to sustain themselves.

“Land,” Frazier replied. “The way we can best take care of ourselves is to have land and turn and till it by our own labor. …We want to be placed on land until we are able to buy it and make it our own.”


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'Me And White Supremacy' Helps You Do The Work Of Dismantling Racism

7/09/20 - NPR - Eric Deggans

Learning about the dangers of systemic racism often leads people to ask: What can I do personally to make a difference?

Layla Saad, an East African, Arab, British, Black, Muslim woman living in Qatar, came up with an impressive answer — a 28-day process that she calls a "personal anti-racism tool" designed to teach those with white privilege how systemic racism works and how they can stop contributing to white supremacy in the world.


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Dana Canedy Is 1st Black Person To Head Major Publishing Imprint

7/08/20 - NPR - Rachel Martin

Dana Canedy has spent her career working with the written word.

"My son calls me 'word nerd,' because I'm obsessed with words and books," she says. "I've been writing since I was 12 years old. And my mother asked me in high school, 'If you don't become a writer, what's your Plan B?' And I said 'There is no Plan B.'"

Plan A worked.


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'The Stakes Are Far Higher Than They've Ever Been': Trump's Niece Pens Tell-All

7/07/20 - NPR - Colin Dwyer

After a good deal of legal wrangling, an incendiary book by President Trump's niece is beginning to come to light. A slew of excerpts surfaced publicly Tuesday, ahead of the expected release of Mary Trump's book next week.

"Honest work was never demanded of him, and no matter how badly he failed, he was rewarded in ways that are almost unfathomable. He continues to be protected from his own disasters in the White House," Mary Trump writes in Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World's Most Dangerous Man.


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D. L. Hughley: 'Everybody Knows' Independence Day Didn't Free Us All

7/04/20 - NPR - Scott Simon

July 4th is U.S. Independence Day. But D.L. Hughley, the comedian and author, suggests in his new book that all U.S. holidays "be put on a probationary period to ascertain their relevance and value to All Americans, acknowledging that days off are nice and that mattress sales must occur ..."

His book, co-written with Doug Moe of the Upright Citizens Brigade, is Surrender, White People! Our Unconditional Terms for Peace.


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Texas Will Finally Teach That Slavery Was Main Cause of the Civil War

7/02/20 - SMITHSONIANMAG.COM - Jason Daley

Slavery has been upgraded to the primary cause in the curriculum, however states’ rights and sectionalism will still be taught as “contributing factors”


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IRENE MORGAN KIRKALDY (1917-2007)

7/01/20 - Black Past - EUELL A. NIELSEN

Irene Amos Morgan Kirkaldy was a civil rights activist who won her 1946 U.S. Supreme Court case in Irene Morgan v. Commonwealth of Virginia, which declared interstate transport racial segregation to be unconstitutional, nearly a decade before the Montgomery Bus Boycott.


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As Palmdale Grapples With A Hanging Death, Locals Recall The Area's Racist History

6/30/20 - NPR - EMILY ELENA DUGDALE

The Antelope Valley's decades of entrenched racism have helped fuel the outcry over the death of 24-year-old Robert Fuller, a Black man found hanging from a tree in Palmdale, Calif., earlier this month.

Many locals are skeptical that Fuller's death was a suicide — the initial explanation that the L.A. County Sheriff's Department issued and then retracted days later.

Some call it a lynching. Thousands have poured into Palmdale's streets, at times shutting down traffic. They're demanding an independent investigation by California's attorney general.


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Mississippi Lawmakers Vote To Remove Confederate Emblem From State Flag

6/30/20 - NPR - Christianna Silva

Lawmakers in Mississippi voted to remove the Confederate battle emblem from the state flag on Sunday, clearing the way for Republican Gov. Tate Reeves to sign the measure into law.

The state House and Senate both approved legislation to remove the 126-year-old current flag and to form a commission to redesign it.


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How ‘Defunding The Police’ Is Translating Into Policy In Richmond

6/22/20 - VPM News - Roberto Roldan

Over the past weeks, thousands of protesters of different races, ages and backgrounds have taken to the streets of Richmond to protest police brutality.

An often repeated chant is the call to “Defund the police.” That demand has led to a nationwide conversation about the role of policing in communities, and has even drawn the attention of two Richmond City Council members.


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Reclamation Square RVA

6/22/20 - Race Capitol (Podcast)

On June 22, 2020, Black youth organizers announced it was time to #ReclaimRVA by renaming the space known as Richmond City Hall as Reclamation Square. Youth and allies held the space for over 7 hours until the Richmond Police Department and Virginia State Police approached the sit-in where a movie was about to begin in riot gear. The police then started tear gassing and shooting rubber bullets directly at the protestors.


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'Interrupt The Systems': Robin DiAngelo On 'White Fragility' And Anti-Racism

6/21/20 - NPR - Ari Shapiro

If you're white, you may not think of yourself as racist. Maybe you hardly think about race at all. But Robin DiAngelo, the author of White Fragility, says white people need to think about how they fit into racist systems if they want to be anti-racist. She calls for a more nuanced and informed understanding of racism so white people can take accountability for the ways they benefit from these structures:

"The simplistic idea that racism is limited to individual intentional acts committed by unkind people is at the root of virtually all white defensiveness on this topic," writes DiAngelo in White Fragility.


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How to find and support Black-owned businesses — and why it's important

6/20/20 - Mashable - BY DYLAN HAAS

You’ve probably seen this phrase floating around a lot lately: It is not enough to be not racist, we must be antiracist.

It's a term that has been made most prominent by Ibram X. Kendi, an author and the founding director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University, and there are a lot of different facets to the concept. By and large, it's about tearing down the racist ideas — and the policies that protect those ideas — that have been actively stymying the growth of Black America throughout the country's history. In Kendi's best-selling book, How to Be an Antiracist, he writes, “When racist ideas resound, denials that those ideas are racist typically follow.”

Part of tearing down those impeding policies, specifically in an economic sense, is actually putting your money where your mouth is. That means instead of getting all of your goods through Amazon and other big-name retailers, you should try to spend your money at Black-owned businesses; preferably local ones.


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‘It was really eye opening': Former students create ‘BlackAtHCPS’ detailing stories of racism, inequality

6/20/20 - NBC12 - Karina Bolster

HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) - A group of former Henrico County students has created a social media page aimed at sharing anonymous stories of racism and inequality within the school system.

An Instagram account called “Black At HCPS” was created two days ago and now more than 50 personal stories have been posted, drawing more than 1,000 followers.


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Five Things Leaders Must Consider to Effectively Address Racial Inequality

6/19/20 - Duke's Fuqua School of Business - Ashleigh Shelby Rosette

The death of George Floyd and resulting protests across the U.S. have prompted many leaders to urgently condemn racism within their organizations.

These public statements are a beginning, but to foster truly authentic dialogue and actual change, business leaders first need to turn inward and assess how prepared they are to lead these conversations, said Ashleigh Shelby Rosette, professor at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.


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Whose Heritage? Public Symbols of the Confederacy

6/19/20 - Southern Poverty Law Center

Our public entities should no longer play a role in distorting history by honoring a secessionist government that waged war against the United States to preserve white supremacy and the enslavement of millions of people.

It’s past time for the South – and the rest of the nation – to bury the myth of the Lost Cause once and for all.


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What is Juneteenth? 4 things you should know

6/19/20 - PBS - Courtney Vinopal

Juneteenth recognizes the day in 1865 when Union Gen. Gordon Granger read the Emancipation Proclamation in Galveston, Texas, signaling to slaves living in the farthest reaching U.S. state at the time that they were freed.

Though the proclamation was signed two years earlier, many slaves had not been formally informed of the news because networks of communication were slow-moving at the time, Neal said.


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Making people aware of their implicit biases doesn’t usually change minds. But here’s what does work

6/19/20 - PBS - Betsy Mason

Even people with the best intentions are influenced by these hidden attitudes, behaving in ways that can create disparities in hiring practices, student evaluations, law enforcement, criminal proceedings — pretty much anywhere people are making decisions that affect others. Such disparities can result from bias against certain groups, or favoritism toward other ones. Today, implicit bias is widely understood to be a cause of unintended discrimination that leads to racial, ethnic, socioeconomic and other inequalities.


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What happened 99 years ago in the Tulsa Race Massacre

6/19/20 - PBS - Gretchen Frazee

In 1921, the “proud, rich, black” community in Tulsa suffered a brutal massacre — up to 300 black Tulsans were murdered by white residents, and a thriving neighborhood of that Oklahoma city burned to the ground.


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Why celebrating Juneteenth is more important now than ever

6/19/20 - VOX - P.R. Lockhart

As the Civil War came to a close in 1865, a number of people remained enslaved, especially in remote areas. Word of slavery’s end traveled slowly, and for those who were largely isolated from Union armies, life continued as if freedom did not exist.

This was especially the case in Texas, where thousands of slaves were not made aware of freedom until June 19, 1865, when Union Gen. Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston and issued an order officially freeing them. Their celebration would serve as the basis of June 19 — or Juneteenth — a holiday celebrating emancipation in the US.


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The Primal Fear of White America

6/17/20 - Scot Loyd

When I was in Junior High School, I had a history teacher tell me during a class lecture on the Civil War era, that black slaves were “cared for and treated as family.” I raised my hand and protested, “but they were still slaves, right?” I was then asked to go sit in the hall for being obnoxious.

These kinds of arguments, that dismiss or excuse the original sins of America is a tired expression of white supremacy and privilege. It is the height of absurdity to insist that people who were considered chattel were “treated well.” And amazingly when confronted with the realities of history, too many White folks want to try and find a “silver lining” in the horrors of our heritage.


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The Atlantic Daily: ‘It’s a Bad Week to Be a Racist Statue’

6/11/20 - The Atlantic - CAROLINE MIMBS NYCE

The global anti-racism movement is forcing a reckoning with symbols of white supremacy. In the U.S., that means reopening an all-too-familiar conversation about Confederate monuments.


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Richmond’s Confederate Monuments Were Used to Sell a Segregated Neighborhood

6/11/20 - The Atlantic - Kevin M. Levin

Real-estate developers used the statues on Monument Avenue to draw white buyers to a neighborhood where houses could not be sold “to any person of African descent.”


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Ruth Wilson Gilmore Makes the Case for Abolition

6/10/20 - The Intercept - Chenjerai Kumanyika

The movement to defund the police in the United States is gaining unprecedented momentum as protests continue across the globe.

In this discussion, Ruth Wilson Gilmore offers a sweeping and detailed analysis of the relentless expansion and funding of police and prisons, and how locking people in cages has become central to the American project.


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How Did We Get Here?163 years of The Atlantic’s writing on race and racism in America

6/10/20 - The Atlantic - Gillian B. White

America recently passed the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first captive Africans brought to what would become the United States. September 2019 was chosen as an imperfect but significant date to mark the start of American slavery and the systems of inequality perpetuated by the nation’s original sin.


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Former Chief Of Reformed Camden, N.J., Force: Police Need 'Consent Of The People'

6/08/20 - NPR - James Doubek

Activists across the country are calling for radical reforms to policing in the U.S., including abolishing the police entirely.

Camden, N.J., took its own big step in 2013. The city was in a public safety crisis, with murder rates 18 times the national average and scores of excessive-force complaints, when the mayor and City Council dissolved the existing police department and created a countywide force in its place.


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Naval Academy alumni board member resigns after accidentally broadcasting racial slurs

6/07/20 - USA TODAY - Emily Bloch of Florida Times-Union

A quiet Friday night on the couch between a now-former Naval Academy Alumni Association Board of Trustees member and his wife went awry when a private conversation was broadcast to hundreds.

While Scott Bethmann, 63, and his wife, Nancy, were watching the news, they started discussing the Black Lives Matter movement, making racist comments and using slurs in a video that was accidentally streamed on Facebook Live.


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Dear anti-racist allies: Here's how to respond to microaggressions

6/06/20 - CNN - Kristen Rogers

It's easy to sight the obvious racism such as using race-based slurs or threats. But there's a more subtle and insidious form of racist stereotyping that can be hard to pin down.

These stereotypes often come in the form of microaggressions — brief and commonplace verbal, behavioral or environmental indignities, said Beverly Daniel Tatum, a psychologist and former Spelman College president, in a previous interview with CNN. Tatum is also author of the classic books "Can We Talk About Race?" and "Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?"


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Maintaining Professionalism In The Age of Black Death Is….A Lot

6/03/20 - Medium - Shenequa Golding

I just witnessed the lynching of a black man, but don’t worry Ted, I’ll have those deliverables to you end of day.


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Frank Rizzo Statue Is Removed In Philadelphia: 'It Is Finally Gone,' Mayor Says

6/03/20 - NPR - Bill Chappell

Workers removed a statue of Philadelphia's controversial former Mayor Frank Rizzo from its place of honor across from City Hall early Wednesday morning, finishing a job that protesters attempted to accomplish during recent demonstrations against police brutality.

In the 1970s, Rizzo famously told Philadelphia voters to "vote white." But on Wednesday, the City of Brotherly Love took down a memorial to a man who exploited its divisions.


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Confederate Monument Being Removed After Birmingham Mayor Vows To 'Finish The Job'

6/02/20 - NPR - Colin Dwyer

Piece by piece, authorities overnight began pulling down a five-story-tall monument to Confederate troops that has stood for more than a century in Birmingham, Ala.

By the time the workers paused Tuesday morning, little was left of a spire that had become a lightning rod for controversy in recent years and a focal point for local protesters outraged by George Floyd's death last week in Minneapolis.


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131-year-old Confederate statue removed from Alexandria intersection

6/02/20 - Patricia Sullivan

The Confederate statue “Appomattox,” which depicts a southern-facing Civil War soldier and has stood in an Alexandria intersection for 131 years, was removed Tuesday morning, a month earlier than planned.

Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson (D) said the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which owns the statue, opted to remove the memorial a month ahead of schedule because of demonstrations nationwide in which segregation-era statues have been vandalized.


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Richmond police officers to be disciplined after tear gassing peaceful protest

6/02/20 - Daily Press - Denise Lavoie

Police officers in Virginia’s capital city are facing disciplinary action after they were filmed using tear gas on a group of peaceful protesters.


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Racism is a public health issue and 'police brutality must stop,' medical groups say

6/01/20 - CNN - Jacqueline Howard

As protests over George Floyd's death continue nationwide, several doctors' groups -- the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Association and American College of Physicians -- are emphasizing that racism is a public health issue and they're calling for police brutality to stop.


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Police tear gas protesters at Lee monument

6/01/20

At approximately 7:37 p.m. on Monday police used tear gas to disperse protesters around the Lee statue on Monument Avenue in Richmond.


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Williams: America is battling two lethal adversaries, COVID-19 and racism. One is deadlier.

5/31/20 - Richmond Times Dispatch - MICHAEL PAUL WILLIAMS

The mood in the Museum District was curiously carefree on the sun-kissed afternoon following a night of arson and destruction.

Bubbles blew from a machine on the balcony of an apartment on Arthur Ashe Boulevard, across from the scorched United Daughters of the Confederacy building, where the message “BUILT ON OUR BACKS” was scrawled on the exterior.


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Richmond’s Controversial Chesterfield Annexation, 50 Years Later

5/20/20 - VPM NPR - Roberto Roldan

Fifty years ago, Richmond annexed 23 square miles of Chesterfield County and 47,000 mostly white residents.

While officials publicly said the annexation was about economic development, some of them admitted secretly that it was about maintaining white control over the majority-black city. Much of what we know about this event comes from a book published in 1982 called “The Politics of Annexation.” Long out of print, the book was just re-released in a free digital format by U of R and VCU.


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Voting Rights For Hundreds Of Thousands Of Felons At Stake In Florida Trial

4/27/20 - NPR - Daniel Rivero

A contentious federal civil rights trial is slated to begin Monday that will determine whether hundreds of thousands of people with felony convictions will be able to vote this fall in the swing state of Florida.

On one side of the case is Florida, along with a slew of other states supporting it from the sidelines.

On the other, hundreds of thousands of people who have completed their sentences but currently can't vote because of one thing they lack: money.


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Martin Luther King Jr.’s arrest record in Fulton County to be expunged

4/03/20 - The Atlanta Journal-Constitution By Ernie Suggs,

The last thing Martin Luther King Jr. ever wanted to do was get arrested.

So on Oct. 19, 1960, when he and dozens of young protesters were arrested in downtown Atlanta for participating in a sit-in demonstration at Rich’s department store, setting off a series of historic events, he was devastated.


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'Black Patriots' Were Heroes Of The Revolution — But Not The History Books

2/16/20 - NPR VPM - Leila Fadel

A new documentary, Black Patriots: Heroes of the Revolution, introduces us to heroes of the American Revolution who aren't typically found in history books. They are a writer, a double agent, a martyr and a soldier — and they are all black.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the executive producer. He is a Hall of Fame basketball player, writer, activist, and in 2016 the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.


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Interrogating the Past

2/09/20 - Richmond Magazine - Rodrigo Arriaza

VCU, UR and other academic institutions probe their roles in perpetuating slavery and racial discrimination

The stolen bodies of men, women and children were cut apart for medical study, discarded in a 19th-century well and forgotten for more than 100 years. In late 2019, a ceremony marked the return of their remains to the medical campus at Virginia Commonwealth University after being stored at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History for 25 years.


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Slavery reparations seem impossible. In many places, they’re already happening

1/31/20 - The Washington Post - Thai Jones

Slavery reparations may be the single most divisive idea in American politics. Advocates have spent decades calling on the U.S. government to assess how such a policy could be implemented and to enact a law that might offer financial restitution to the descendants of enslaved people. But minds are made up — according to a recent Associated Press poll, 74 percent of African Americans now favor reparation payments, while 85 percent of whites oppose them — and Congress seems unlikely to take up the matter. A 30-year-old bill that would study the issue, H.R. 40, has never reached a vote. Hearings this past June brought Ta-Nehisi Coates, Danny Glover and other leading proponents to Capitol Hill, and every Democratic presidential candidate except Mike Bloomberg has backed at least studying the idea. The public remains unmoved.


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Journalist Gwen Ifill Honored With Black Heritage Forever Stamp

1/29/20 - NPR - Vanessa Romo

Gwen Ifill didn't want it to be a big deal.

The legendary journalist knew she'd served as a trailblazer for women and especially a beacon of what is professionally possible for women of color. But in an interview with The New York Times, she said she was eager for the days when it would not seem "like any breakthrough at all" for a black woman to be anchoring a national news program.

And yet, more than three years after her death, Ifill is still making breakthroughs. This time, on a stamp.


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'Like I wasn't there': climate activist Vanessa Nakate on being erased from a movement

1/29/20 - The Guardian - Kenya Evelyn

When Vanessa Nakate addressed a tweet to the Associated Press asking why she had been cropped out of a photo, it was out of curiosity. She didn’t think her question would ignite a firestorm of criticism and spark an international conversation on erasure and diversity within the environmental movement.

“When I saw the photo, I only saw part of my jacket. I was not on the list of participants. None of my comments from the press conference were included,” she said. “It was like I wasn’t even there.”


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How Jacob Lawrence Painted a Radical History of the American Struggle

1/28/20 - SMITHSONIANMAG.COM - Brigit Katz

Between 1949 and 1954, Jacob Lawrence made countless trips from his home in Brooklyn to the 135th Street Branch of the New York Public Library, where he scoured history books, letters, military reports and other documents for hidden stories that had shaped American history. By this point in time, Lawrence was “the most celebrated African American painter in America,” having risen to fame in the 1940s with multiple acclaimed series depicting black historical figures, the Great Migration and everyday life in Harlem. In May 1954, just as the Supreme Court ruled to desegregate public schools, the artist finally finished his research. He was ready to paint.


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Longview presentation shows how quilts served as 'Morse code' for slaves seeking freedom

1/25/20 - Longview News Journal - Ken Hedler khedler

Long before Navajo code talkers in World War II and the advent of secured phone lines and encrypted emails, some say, American slaves used quilts hung from windowsills and clotheslines as a signal to others to help them escape to the North for freedom.

These quilts contained symbols sewn into them. For instance, the North Star signaled for a slave to go north, a sailboat represented safe passage and bear claws told slaves to follow the bear trails into the mountains.

Pam Tucker's ancestors enslaved Wanda Tucker's. Together they confront effects of slavery.

1/25/20 - USA Today - ELIZABETH MONTGOMERY | ARIZONA REPUBLIC

PHOENIX – This week in Arizona, a descendant of slaves came face-to-face with a descendant of the family who enslaved her ancestors.

The takeaway? Before improvements can be made in race relations, we must understand the historically different experiences of white and black Americans.

"Not understanding ... what it means to live as an African American in this country was me. ... That's the experience for a lot of white people," said Pam Tucker, the descendant of a white Virginia slave owner.

On Thursday, Pam took the stage with Wanda Tucker, a descendant of a black slave family, at Rio Salado College in the Phoenix area.


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Q&A: Genevieve Siegel-Hawley on new book, school integration and Richmond Public Schools rezoning

1/17/20 - The Richmond Times Dispatch - JUSTIN MATTINGLY

Rather than give a classic speech as part of a lecture series she was asked to speak at in 2016, Genevieve Siegel-Hawley decided to share a personal reflection.

She wrote a letter to her daughter, Posey, about school desegregation, its history and its impacts today, an issue Siegel-Hawley got interested in as a Richmond student and teacher.


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Racist Housing Practices From The 1930s Linked To Hotter Neighborhoods Today

1/14/20 - NPR - Meg Anderson

In cities around the country, if you want to understand the history of a neighborhood, you might want to do the same thing you'd do to measure human health: Check its temperature.

That's what a group of researchers did, and they found that neighborhoods with higher temperatures were often the same ones subjected to discriminatory, race-based housing practices nearly a century ago.


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50 years after 'Black Manifesto,' religious groups again take up reparations

1/10/20 - Richmond Free Press - Matthew J. Cressler and Adelle M. Banks

On a Sunday morning in May 1969, as clergy processed into the sanctuary of New York’s august Riverside Church, civil rights activist James Forman vaulted into the pulpit to demand $500 million in reparations for the mistreatment of African-Americans from white churches and synagogues.


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Richmond students plead with lawmakers to fix their schools

1/09/20 - Channel 6 News - MATTHEW FULTZ,

A group of Richmond high school students are trying to make a difference for the children who will follow them.

Asia Goode is one of the students who on Wednesday evening called for state lawmakers to help improve school learning conditions.

"We're pushing for equitable funding for schools," Goode said.


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"Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced."
- James Baldwin
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