White people, don’t tell me what Martin Luther King would think of Black Lives Matter

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2016-07-09 14:49Z by Steven

White people, don’t tell me what Martin Luther King would think of Black Lives Matter


Jon Crowley
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I woke up Thursday morning and accidentally watched a video of Alton Sterling being killed by the police. In a world of social feeds and autoplaying video, I’m far from the only person who had this experience. Within 10 minutes I was reading descriptions of how Philando Castile had been killed, again by the police.

Like many people of color, I’ve been warned about interactions with the police since I was a little kid. Despite being a light-skinned, mixed-race black person, despite growing up in a safe suburban area, this warning was a part of my childhood.

And seeing, very explicitly, how easily two black men met violent deaths at the hands of people who are supposed to serve their communities, pushed me past my hard-earned emotional distance from the subject and made me feel scared. Scared and alone, even as I saw the reactions pouring out from people of every race, nationality, and culture, looking to express the same fear and outrage.

There are a lot of people from other communities or racial groups who want to express support, and a lot of people who want to explain why these men had it coming.

If you’ve made it this far, I’m going to assume you’re trying to find something positive to do or say, beyond offering hopes or prayers or condolences.

If you want to know what I’d consider the bare minimum of support you could offer to the people of color in your life, here’s a starting point:…

Read the entire article here.

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“Given this situation, I am neither thrilled nor honored to receive an award in the name of Martin Luther King at this time, here at the University of Oregon. I am embarrassed.”

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes on 2016-01-21 21:32Z by Steven

“I know that those who receive this award say they are honored and thrilled. My situation at the University of Oregon complicates my reaction. I was hired as a full professor with tenure in 2001. While I have African ancestry, I identify as multi-racial. At present, there are no full professors who identify as African American or Black in the entire University of Oregon College of Arts and Sciences. But I am a woman of color. At present there are only two full professors who are women of color throughout the entire University of Oregon. I am one of them. Given this situation, I am neither thrilled nor honored to receive an award in the name of Martin Luther King at this time, here at the University of Oregon.

I am embarrassed.” —Naomi Zack

Justin Weinberg, “King Award Recipient: “Neither thrilled nor honored”,” Daily Nous: News for and About the Philosophy Profession, January 20, 2016. http://dailynous.com/2016/01/20/king-award-recipient-neither-thrilled-nor-honored/.

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Jewish Uses and Abuses of Martin Luther King’s Memory

Posted in Articles, Judaism, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, Religion, United States on 2016-01-21 20:15Z by Steven

Jewish Uses and Abuses of Martin Luther King’s Memory


Jared Jackson, Founder/Executive Director
Jews in ALL Hues

Four years ago, I made a promise to myself: I would not accept any more invitations to speak to the Jewish community on Martin Luther King weekend. Since then, I have dutifully kept that promise. But this year, I’m breaking it.

Here’s the thing: I used to love MLK weekend. In fact, I still have a deep love for it. The service projects, the gathering of people from different religious and humanistic traditions, and learning just a bit more about the civil rights era from people who were there — it was always a time I could look forward to. As a Jewish professional, I noticed that this was also the time when many communities reached out to Jewish leaders of color for speaking engagements. And I used to go to those events and speak to some of those communities.

Then I realized how many Ashkenazi Jewish communities take credit for a social justice heritage to which they are not currently contributing. It’s fine to have an event honoring the legacy of Jewish involvement in the civil rights era, so long as there is a clear plan to continue the work that King, Abraham Joshua Heschel and many others started…

Read the entire article here.

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What does Martin Luther King mean to Latinos today?

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Identity Development/Psychology, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2013-02-06 05:41Z by Steven

What does Martin Luther King mean to Latinos today?

Bentley IMPACT – The Power of Ideas
Bentley University, Waltham, Massachusetts

Donna Maria Blancero, Associate Professor of Management

“I have a dream, that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 2013, we must ask ourselves the question: has his dream become a reality for Latinos?

We know that Dr. King inspired many Latinos, including Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta. Latinos, just like other Americans, consider Dr. King a great leader of the civil rights movement. If he were alive today, he likely would be working side by side with Latinos to address issues of inequality.

But what does his legacy mean for us today? Has his dream been achieved?…

…When I ask participants in my research to self-identify their race (they all self-identify as Latino), I am typically met with a range of responses. Some are angry at me and state that they are Mexican American or Puerto Rican and that I shouldn’t be asking about race—their race, they say, is Latino! Others have written in comments, such as “I checked off ‘white’ but don’t tell my family, they would be angry at me.” Many Latinos have mixed backgrounds that don’t easily fit into a box. More importantly, many of us don’t want to be put in a box, even if it is “multi-racial.’”…

Read the entire article here.

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Inauguration: Celebrating President Barack Obama and Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2013-01-27 20:51Z by Steven

Inauguration: Celebrating President Barack Obama and Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.

On Being Both: Interfaith Parent, Interfaith Child: Life With Two Religions

Susan Katz Miller

Four years ago this week, we awoke before dawn, bundled our children into layers of clothing, and walked from our house to the Metro station. We wedged our family onto a subway car with throngs of neighbors and tourists, and emerged in downtown Washington DC, just as the sky began to turn pink. As we sleep-walked past the grand Constitution Hall heading towards the Washington Monument, I told my children how the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) prevented opera singer Marian Anderson from performing in that Hall in 1939. They were amazed that their own grandparents had lived through such times…

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Obama’s inauguration carries symbolic resonance on Martin Luther King Day

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2013-01-21 00:08Z by Steven

Obama’s inauguration carries symbolic resonance on Martin Luther King Day

The Guardian

Gary Younge, Feature Writer and Columnist

America’s first black president will be sworn in on the day devoted to its most famous civil rights leader

In April 1961, four months before Barack Obama was born, Bobby Kennedy told Voice of America: “There’s no question that in the next 30 or 40 years a negro can also achieve the same position that my brother has as president of the United States.” Less than a month later a group of black and white freedom riders were firebombed and beaten with baseball bats and lead piping as they tried to travel through the south. The interracial marriage of Obama’s parents was not recognised in more than 20 states. Black people’s right to vote, let alone stand for election, had not been secured in much of the south. The prospect of a black president never seemed further away.

Four years later the essayist and author James Baldwin mocked Kennedy’s prediction. “That sounded like a very emancipated statement to white people,” he wrote in The American Dream and the American Negro. “They were not in Harlem when this statement was first heard. They did not hear the laughter and bitterness and scorn with which this statement was greeted … We were here for 400 years and now he tells us that maybe in 40 years, if you are good, we may let you become president.”

The fact that Obama’s inauguration is taking place on Martin Luther King Day – a federal public holiday to celebrate the birth of the civil rights leader – carries great symbolic resonance. The notion that America might vote in a black president now seems little more than a banal fact of life…

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Inauguration will cement ties between Obama, Martin Luther King Jr.

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2013-01-19 01:57Z by Steven

Inauguration will cement ties between Obama, Martin Luther King Jr.

The Washington Post

Wil Haygood, Reporter

President Barack Obama, with the nation and world watching, will share his Inauguration Day spotlight with a Baptist preacher from Georgia who launched a moral crusade six decades ago to wrest America from its brutal Jim Crow laws.

Future generations may mull the divine meaning of Barack Obama’s celebration and pageantry taking place on the very day set aside to honor Martin Luther King Jr., the civil rights leader gunned down on a Memphis hotel balcony in 1968.

“President Obama represents the last lap of this unfinished race” to achieve equality, said the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who was near King on the day he was slain in Memphis.

The Obama-King moment is already imbued with a palpable resonance. “It is all so very deep to me,” said Clarence B. Jones, who in 1963 helped King draft his luminous “I Have a Dream” speech that he delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, opposite the Mall from the Capitol, where Obama will deliver his second inaugural address.

In the days leading up to the inauguration, Jones found himself in the throes of writing a letter to the president. “I’m going to ask him, ‘If you could just pause during your speech on Inauguration Day and look at the Lincoln Memorial, and then in the direction of the King Memorial, and say as you are taking the oath of office, “Martin, this one’s for you,” he said…

…Jackson points to the Obama accomplishments which make him feel most proud: The increase in Pell Grants for students, more people working than when Obama first came into office, the ending of the war in Iraq. But because Obama is in the White House, Jackson says it does not mask the concerns he still has.

“What we want is equality,” Jackson explains. “If you put a black as head of the NFL, well, that’s a position. But what makes the league work, why we’re so successful, is that the rules are public, the goals are clear and the score is transparent. We have a black in the White House, yes, but beneath, the playing field is uneven, the goals are not clear and the score is not transparent. The infrastructure enforcement is where justice comes from. You want justice from the bottom up. You want equality from the bottom up.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Family of Freedom: Presidents and African Americans in the White House

Posted in Barack Obama, Books, History, Media Archive, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, Slavery, United States on 2013-01-10 22:02Z by Steven

Family of Freedom: Presidents and African Americans in the White House

Paradigm Publishers
February 2011
288 pages
6″ x 9″
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-59451-833-1
EBook ISBN: 978-1-61205-000-3

Kenneth T. Walsh

This book examines the intertwined relationships between the presidents and the African Americans who have been an integral part of the White House since the beginning of the Republic. The book discusses the racial attitudes and policies of the presidents and shows how African Americans helped to shape those attitudes and policies over the years. The analysis starts with the early presidents who had slaves and tells the compelling stories of their interactions, with an emphasis on how these slaves dealt with bondage in the supposed citadel of American freedom and independence. The book moves through the era of Abraham Lincoln, whose views on emancipation were greatly influenced by the African Americans around him, especially by White House seamstress Elizabeth Keckley and valet William Slade. The book covers the Jim Crow era and proceeds through the political and cultural breakthroughs on civil rights accomplished by Lyndon Johnson in partnership with the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. The book ends with an insightful analysis of the rise, election, and administration of Barack Obama, the first African American president, including an exclusive interview with Obama.

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Reflections: An Anthology of African-American Philosophy, 1st Edition

Posted in Anthologies, Books, Law, Media Archive, Philosophy, Politics/Public Policy, Religion, Social Science, United States, Women on 2012-02-06 05:26Z by Steven

Reflections: An Anthology of African-American Philosophy, 1st Edition

Cengage Learning
464 pages
Paperback ISBN-10: 0534573932  ISBN-13: 9780534573935

Edited by:

James Montmarquet, Professor of Philosophy
Tennessee State University

William Hardy, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Religion
Tennessee State University

This anthology provides the instructor with a sufficient quantity, breadth, and diversity of materials to be the sole text for a course on African-American philosophy. It includes both classic and more contemporary readings by both professional philosophers and other people with philosophically intriguing viewpoints. The material provided is diverse, yet also contains certain themes which instructors can effectively employ to achieve the element of unity. One such theme, the debate of the “nationalist” focus on blackness vs. the many critics of this focus, runs through a great number of issues and readings.

Table of Contents

  • Preface.
  • Introduction.
    • 1. W.E.B. DuBois: From The Souls of Black Folk.
    • 2. Molefi K. Asante: Racism, Consciousness, and Afrocentricity.
    • 3. Kwame Anthony Appiah: Racisms.
    • 4. J. L. A. Garcia: The Heart of Racisms. Contemporary Issue: Views on “Mixed Race”.
    • 5. Naomi Zack: Mixed Black and White Race and Public Policy.
    • 6. Lewis R. Gordon: Race, Biraciality, and Mixed Race-In Theory.
    • 7. Martin R. Delaney: The Condition, Elevation, Emigration, and Destiny of the Colored Peoples of the United States.
    • 8. Frederick Douglass: The Future of the Negro, The Future of the Colored Race, The Nation’s Problem, and On Colonization.
    • 9. Marcus Garvey: From Philosophy and Opinions of Marcus Garvey.
    • 10. Maulana Karenga: The Nguzo Saba (The Seven Principles): Their Meaning and Message.
    • 11. Molefi K. Asante: The Afrocentric Idea in Education.
    • 12. Cornel West: The Four Traditions of Response. Contemporary Issue: “Ebonics”.
    • 13. Geneva Smitherman: Black English/Ebonics: What it Be Like?
    • 14. Milton Baxter: Educating Teachers about Educating the Oppressed. Feminism, Womanism, and Gender Relations.
    • 15. Sojourner Truth: Ain’t I a Woman?
    • 16. Patricia Hill Collins: The Social Construction of Black Feminist Thought.
    • 17. bell hooks: Reflections on Race and Sex.
    • 18. Angela P. Harris: Race and Essentialism in Feminist Legal Theory.
    • 19. Charles W. Mills: Do Black Men Have a Moral Duty to Marry Black Women? Contemporary Issue: Women’s Rights and Black Nationalism.
    • 20. E. Francis White: Africa on My Mind: Gender, Counterdiscourse, and African American Nationalism.
    • 21. Amiri Baraka: Black Woman. Violence, Liberation, and Social Justice.
    • 22. Martin Luther King, Jr.: Letter from a Birmingham Jail.
    • 23. Malcolm X: Message to the Grass Roots.
    • 24. Howard McGary: Psychological Violence, Physical Violence, and Racial Oppression.
    • 25. Laurence M. Thomas: Group Autonomy and Narrative Identity. Contemporary Issue: Affirmative Action.
    • 26. Bernard Boxill: Affirmative Action.
    • 27. Shelby Steele: Affirmative Action. Ethics and Value Theory.
    • 28. Alain Locke: Values and Imperatives.
    • 29. Michele M. Moody-Adams: Race, Class, and the Social Construction of Self-Respect.
    • 30. Laurence M. Thomas: Friendship.
    • 31. Cornel West: Nihilism in Black America.
    • 32. Katie G. Cannon: Unctuousness as a Virtue: According to the Life of Zora Neale Hurston. Contemporary Issue: A Classic Question of Values, Rights, and Education.
    • 33. Booker T. Washington: Atlanta Exposition Address.
    • 34. W.E.B. DuBois: The Talented Tenth.
    • 35. Patricia J. Williams: Alchemical Notes: Reconstructing Ideals from Deconstructed Rights.
    • 36. Regina Austin: Sapphire Bound!
    • 37. Derrick Bell: Racial Realism-After We’re Gone: Prudent Speculations on America in a Post-Racial Epoch.
    • 38. John Arthur: Critical Race Theory: A Critique. Contemporary Issue: Racist Hate Speech.
    • 39. Charles Lawrence and Gerald Gunther: Prohibiting Racist Speech: A Debate. Aesthetics.
    • 40. James Baldwin: Everybody’s Protest Novel.
    • 41. Larry Neal: The Black Arts Movement.
    • 42. Angela Y. Davis: Billy Holiday’s “Strange Fruit”: Music and Social Consciousness.
    • 43. Ralph Ellison: Blues People. Contemporary Issue: Rap Music.
    • 44. Crispin Sartwell: Rap Music and the Uses of Stereotype.
    • 45. Kimberle Crenshaw: Beyond Racism and Misogyny: Black Feminism and 2 Live Crew. Philosophy and Theology.
    • 46. David Walker: David Walker’s Appeal to the Colored Citizens of the World, and Very Expressly, to Those of the United stated.
    • 47. James H. Cone: God and Black Theology.
    • 48. Victor Anderso: Ontological Blackness in Theology.
    • 49. Anthony Pinn: Alternative Perspectives and Critiques. Contemporary Issue: Womanist Theology and the Traditionalist Black Church.
    • 50. Cheryl J. Sanders: Christian Ethics and Theology in a Womanist Perspective.
    • 51. Delores Williams: Womanist Reflections on “the Black Church,” the African-American Denominational Churches and the Universal Hagar’s Spiritual Church.
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Derek Jeter embodies MLK’s dream

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2012-01-17 05:26Z by Steven

Derek Jeter embodies MLK’s dream

ESPN New York

Wallace Matthews

Biracial Yankees captain a symbol of the America Martin Luther King once envisioned

When the average person thinks of Derek Jeter, he or she is likely to think of the 3,000 hits, or the five World Series rings, or the highlight reel full of great plays he has made over the past 16 years for the New York Yankees.

They are likely to linger on the countless clutch hits he has delivered in key moments, or the 2000 World Series MVP, or the fact he has been captain of the Yankees for nearly a decade and the face of the franchise for considerably longer than that.

It is a safe bet that for most people, one of the last things they think about when they think about Derek Jeter is his race. Or, more correctly, his races.

To all the remarkable accomplishments Jeter has achieved in his Cooperstown-bound baseball career, add one that few of us ever bother to think about—that Jeter is the product of a mixed-race marriage, a happenstance that at one time would have caused him to suffer hardship, if not scorn, from many, but now is just another fact in the Derek Jeter biography.

As we celebrate Martin Luther King Day, it is important to understand that of all the things Derek Jeter is, one of the most significant is that he is a symbol of the kind of America Dr. King hoped one day to live in…

…Jeter, always wary of discussing topics outside of his comfort zone—the baseball diamond—declined a request to be interviewed for this story.

 But Dr. Harry Edwards, a sociologist and black activist of the 1960s who has spoken and written extensively on the subject of race and professional athletics, explained Jeter’s appeal as a combination both of his unique attributes as an athlete and individual, and as a sign that the United States, throughout its history often bitterly divided along racial, ethnic and territorial lines, is moving toward an era of diversity and inclusion.

“I think it’s absolutely appropriate in the 21st century that a Derek Jeter should be the face of the premier baseball team in this country,” Edwards said. “When you talk about leadership and production and consistency and durability over the years, what he has achieved and what he has accomplished, and more than that, the way that he has done it is just absolutely phenomenal. He is one of our real athletic heroes and role models to the point that his race or ethnicity does not matter.”…

Read the entire article here.

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