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A blog from Medium about the fight against anti-Black racism.

Chicago police killed 13-year-old Adam Toledo, and some media responded by questioning Toledo’s character. Black and Brown kids deserve better.

The public has now seen the troubling video of a Chicago police officer shooting and killing Adam Toledo, a 13-year-old Latino boy who lived in the city’s Little Village neighborhood.

For Chicagoans, especially for those in Black and Brown communities, the shooting feels like another likely injustice in a long line of cases in which police have killed young Black people — the police killing and subsequent cover-up of the death of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald offers a high-profile example.

But just seven days after the murder of the child, popular Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn wrote that the public should…


That and more this week In Race and Racism

The racial nonsense was thick this past week. From an adjustable hate speech slider for gamers to the racist roots of the District of Columbia’s federal disenfranchisement, here’s some of the race and racism news you might have missed.

“Computer: Decrease racism shields by 17 percent.”

How much White nationalism, body shaming and sexism would you prefer to experience today? Apparently Intel thought that answers other than “none” were acceptable, because it recently previewed a service that would allow video gamers to choose the degree of racism, misogyny or hate speech that comes in through their headsets from other players…


They claim to support diversity and inclusion, but favoring a specific type of light-skinned model is colorism

You’ve seen this woman before.

Maybe not this exact woman, but a version of her.

Lightly tan skin. Big loose curls. Definitely not a White woman. Maybe a Black woman? Mixed with some other race? The elusive Blasian?

It doesn’t matter. She is the Diversity™ you need for your next ad campaign. Ethnic ambiguity is in right now, and it’s time to capitalize on it. The ad was for skincare, right? Or maybe makeup. Something in the beauty aisle.

If you use a darker woman, White people won’t think your product is for them. You’re not trying to corner the…


A $25,000 housing grant is a good step but doesn’t right the wrong of slavery and economic injustice

Evanston, Illinois, approved to use a small portion of its cannabis taxes for an equity initiative to address housing inequities from redlining. The city calls it reparations. While this is a good step in the right direction and a great model to study, this isn’t reparations.

According to a Black Star News op-ed by A. Kirsten Mullen and William Darity:

This is a housing plan dressed up as a reparations plan….The term reparations [should] be reserved for a comprehensive policy of redress for black American descendants of persons enslaved in the United States. Specifically, black reparations must refer to a…


MTV first reality show’s interaction between Powell and Rebecca Blasband didn’t change much after 30 years

When the original cast of The Real World appeared on MTV, I was nine years old. And to be honest, back then, I’d usually just change the channel whenever it was on. I was just a kid then, more interested in watching the latest Michael Jackson or Nirvana video instead of “seven strangers picked to live in a house.” The youngest cast member, Julie Gentry, was 19 at the time. That seemed eons away from my life as a fourth-grader. 10/10 could not relate.

Thirty years and a pandemic later, I found myself watching the entire season on Paramount Plus


Giving the police the benefit of the doubt undermines the victims

Protesters took to the streets after hearing the news. A Brooklyn Center officer shot and killed 20-year-old Daunte Wright. Many wondered how this could happen again. Another unarmed Black man lost his life from a police encounter. Wright died a few miles away from Minneapolis, where George Floyd’s death played on repeat. The jury has yet to deliberate Derek Chauvin’s guilt, though that day will soon arrive. The physical and thematic proximity of these cases shocked an already grieving community. Kim Potter, a 26-year-old veteran of the force, and the police chief have since resigned from their positions. But, before…


Let’s Unpack This

A fired professor’s words belie the truth of her anti-Black academic bias

When I consider the level of commitment it took for me to enroll and graduate from law school, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story’s words still ring true: “The law is a jealous mistress and requires a long and constant courtship. It is not to be won by trifling favors, but by a lavish homage.” I became intimate with Justice Story’s words as law school became the single most important thing in my life, allowing little room for anything else romantically, socially, or financially until I graduated.

For three years, on most days, I’d wake up early and head to…


Across the U.S., people of color point to a root cause: environmental racism

“Wind blows oily black dust onto cars, windowsills, and lawns as a 100-car train loaded with coal rolls past Parchester Village, a historically Black neighborhood in Richmond, California. This happens a couple of times a week. The train’s cargo, mined from the mountains of Utah by the coal giant Wolverine Fuels, will join the towering piles of coal at the Levin-Richmond Terminal, a privately owned coal shipping port seven miles away. The terminal is responsible for a quarter of the coal the United States ships from the West Coast to Asia.

The coal dust gets so thick that some say…

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