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What can I say? This is post racial america right? And apparently a Black president means that you can no longer study race or racism in the past or present. I wasn’t an AFS major but I think its unbelievable to suggest that an entire field is inferior. Given the fact that the Black experience and the experience of people of color is often ignored or under-reported I think its imperative that intellectuals make it their business to consider the Black experience. This reminds me of discussion regarding groups such as the BSU, LASA (Latin American Student Association), NAACP Black Greek orgs etc. and whether affinity groups are still relevant. The simple answer is yes. I say yes because if we left it up to the majority, the interest of people of color would seldom be heard, reported or considered.


I am writing this very quickly while on the side of Interstate 20. I am also struggling mightily to not use my colorful repertoire of insanely rhythmic and appropriate curse words. Thank me later.

Today The Chronicle of Higher Education published a blog entry from Naomi Schaefer Riley entitled “The Most Persuasive Case for Eliminating Black Studies? Just Read the Dissertations.” I refuse to link. They do not deserve the traffic. Google it or take my word for it.

Schaefer Riley is responding to an earlier Chronicle article lauding the first cohort of Northwestern University’s Black Studies program. So bemused is she by the mere titles of the dissertations of these young black scholars that Schaefer Riley can barely contain her glee as she proceeds to viciously, intentionally, and deliberately insult every single one of the scholars listed and everyone within the field of black studies. You can almost…

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Broken on all sides

Watching Broken on All Sides didn’t rock my world. I can’t say it surprised me much. However, knowledge is power and I was very happy to see so many people in attendance. Information is the first step towards affecting change and documentaries like this shed light on a situation that you may not be aware of if you’ve never personally encountered it. We recently watched the Wire and the question was posed, is this show a minstrel show? I had to think to myself and at first glance it sure can seem that way. However characters such as Avon Barksdale are products of a broken system. A broken education system that under nourishes intellectual talent, a broken economic system and prison system that turns minor offenders into second class citizens and major offenders, leaving little economic opportunities. Running a drug empire isn’t for dummies and I’m sure many of the workers within the hypothetical drug structure would have alternative employment. Reform and education are needed to change a system that not only sets up traps, but permanently traps those within it.

Why hoodie walk?

Treyvon Martin’s death sparked a line of dialogue that I genuinely appreciated. The facts of this case will be determined in a court of law but the implications of it are much greater. The criminalization of the young Black man in America is far from a new concept except of course, for those who don’t have to live it. At this point it feels like beating a dead horse to talk about this part of being Black in America. However, it seems like its news to some people. Yes, while walking down the street at night you are likely to be stopped and questioned for no apparent reason other than your skin color. I am viewed as a threat. As a young man of color this is no surprise and I have several friends who have experienced this. Even at Gettysburg a liberal arts college where one could rest assured I am just another student with the same level of criminal activity as the next student (next to none) this is not the case. Sometimes you experience double consciousness because being Black slaps you over the head. For example when you’re with your group of friends talking on a Thursday night near Constitution and you see a group of girls cross the street in the block before yours, so as not to cross your path. Did this happen because I’m black? Maybe not, maybe it did. The point is I have to consider the role that race plays. Even if I can now say my President is Black. Or when you’re leaving the ATM from PNC and the cops stop and question you and ask for identification, as if you had just robbed the atm via your own bank account. So yeah, people were outraged about Treyvon Martin’s death, not just because of how young he was, and not because (in the public court) Zimmerman is guilty, but rather because we’ve all been and continue to be Treyvon Martin on a regular basis. The issue of race and the criminalization of people of color affects us all, regardless of our race/gender. Poor people have been disenfranchised and given ideology to keep them that way.

The Crunk Feminist Collective

Nearly two Wednesdays ago, after a long day in the office, I frantically drove home, donned one of three dark hoodies that I own, hopped a train to NYC from Jersey, met another Sista Prof friend and made it via taxi to Union Square just in time to participate in the first One Million Hoodies for Trayvon Martin March, which had been announced only the day before.

After hearing from Trayvon’s parents and the family’s attorney, we burst into the streets of Manhattan, speaking Trayvon’s name, almost as if the fervency of our incantations would call this boy, this young Lazarus, back to life. The energy in the air was nothing short of electric. We were not there when Trayvon begged for his life on a suburban lawn in Florida. But our collective screams on his behalf hopefully served to amplify his own screams that night.

I have been taken…

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Barack Obama is not a black leader. He’s a leader who’s black. This is not an insignificant distinction. In order to become President, he had to promise to be President for all the people and not be someone who would be a special friend to the black community, and he has lived up to that pledge. Black America has enjoyed the spiritual boost and pride injection that’s come from seeing the brother break the highest glass ceiling and strut through the White House lawn and parade his beautiful family before the world. But when Obama turns to governing, it’s a different story.

(MORE: Touré on the New Black Irony)

When he spoke of Trayvon Martin, Obama did so in a humane and paternal way, though he was careful not to bias the ongoing Department of Justice investigation. But more crucially, he was careful not to racialize the…

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Racist Hunger Games Fans Are Very Disappointed

Racist Hunger Games Fans Are Very Disappointed

Via Gawker. An interest read into strong reactions to the casting of three characters within the recent movie release, Hunger Games.

Interesting read.


If I haven’t learned anything else as an Americorps member, it’s that we all have a story and a struggle.

So you’ve heard of white guilt, right? Basically, it’s a sentiment that white people have that they should feel bad for things that their people have done to other cultures, especially black people in terms of racism and discrimination. It’s a fascinating phenomenon, and something that everyone should read up on. Here’s how Wikipedia defines it:

White guilt refers to the concept of individual or collective guilt often said to be felt by some White people for the racist treatment of people of color by Whites both historically and presently. The term is generally used in pejorative way (and in a partisan fashion within American political circles).

White guilt has been described as one of several psychosocial costs of racism for White individuals along with the ability to have empathic…

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