ESSAY ARCHIVES


 

 

The Antiracist Philosophy of Malcolm X
Black Perspectives. Feb 22, 2017

In burning through the old forests of assimilationist ideas, Malcolm X paved the way for antiracist ideas. He paved the way for Black is beautiful then, and Black lives matter today, for being conscious then, for being woke today.

 

 

The Book That Made Me:
Learn How to Love

Public Books. Jan 23, 2017

If only Americans were nurtured in antiracist ideas, then that would unleash what hooks calls the “healing power of redemptive love.” It is a line I hold dear to my heart. If only Americans were nurtured in antiracist ideas, then Americans would love.

Racist Ideas Are Spread by the Powerful to Support Racist Policies
NEWSWEEK. Feb 11, 2017

Contrary to popular conceptions, ignorant and hateful people have not been behind the production and reproduction of racist ideas in America. Instead, racist ideas have usually been produced by some of the most brilliant and cunning minds of each era. (this article first appeared in The Conversation)

 

 

The 1967 MLK and the Politics of Transcendence
Black Perspectives. Jan 21, 2017

And in order to sustain the fight to change anything, you have to philosophically believe change is possible. Cynicism is the kryptonite of change.

 

 

Uncovering the Roots of Racist Ideas in America
The Conversation. Feb 5, 2017

Time and again, racist ideas have not been born and bred in the cradle of ignorant, hateful or unpatriotic minds. Time and again, powerful and brilliant men and women have produced racist ideas in order to justify the racist policies of their era, in order to redirect the blame for their era’s racial disparities away from those policies and onto black people.

 

 

Racial Progress Is Real. But So Is Racist Progress
The New York Times. Jan 21, 2017

But what if there have been two historical forces at work: a dual and dueling history of racial progress and the simultaneous progression of racism?

 

 
 

 

There's a History of White Terror Suppressing Black Voters
Timeline. Nov 7, 2016

But Americans rarely, if ever, call them what they are: terrorists. Instead, we call them white nationalists and white supremacists and right wingers and hate groups — any term but terrorists.

 

 

What on Earth are Trump's Black Supporters Thinking?
Timeline. Aug 5, 2016

In fact, it is exactly what it looks like: Trump’s Black supporters share his racist ideas. They are as rabidly anti-Black as their candidate. They have thoroughly consumed quite possibly the most sophisticated racist idea to date: the idea of a post-racial America.

 

 

Three Comforting Myths About the Declaration of Independence
Truthout. July 4, 2016

"We, the people" seem to avoid the hard floor of truth. And too often, our historians and memories are hindered by duty, blinded by patriotism and restrained by ideology in splashing water on us, in soiling our bed of mythology, in forcing us to wake up to the complex and sometimes awful truth of the American foundation.

 

 

Racism Is Not a Teaching Tool
The Chronicle of Higher Education. May 31, 2016

I can find museums and plaques but I am struggling to find prominent buildings and institutions, on or off college campuses, named after people whom white Americans commonly consider their enemies. I am struggling to find buildings named for those who terrorized white people on the scale that slaveholders, Confederates, and Klansmen terrorized black people.

 

 

'Tough on Crime' and the Roots of Racist Ideas in America
Signature. April 13, 2016

Throughout the 2016 campaign, Black Lives Matter activists have soundly attacked the defenders of the 1994 crime bill as part of their larger attack on the criminal justice system, and the racist ideas rationalizing the system’s racial disparities in everything from arrests, to incarceration rates, to deaths at the hands of law enforcement officials.

 

 

Beyoncé: Black Power, Her Opponents, and their Dances with History
Diverse: Issues In Higher Education. Feb 14, 2016

When Beyoncé jolted 100 million viewers back to Black power on Super Bowl Sunday, she was dancing with history. She was dancing for history. She danced with a fierce Black women dance troupe of black leather, black berets, swaying Afros, stomping Malcolm “X” formations, raised fists, posing with sign that boomed: “Justice 4 Mario Woods,” referring to the Black man killed by San Francisco police on December 2.

 

 

Reclaiming MLK's Unspeakable Nightmare: The Progression of Racism in America
Black Perspectives. Jan 22, 2016

When Americans remember Martin Luther King Jr., we first and foremost remember his “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.” And when we celebrate and observe King’s dream from the March on Washington on August 28, 1963, we celebrate and observe America’s march of racial progress over the last five decades.

5 Must Read Books of 2016 by Black Millennials
Black Perspectives. Dec 18, 2016

As I reflected on 2016, Black millennials and how we made our mark on the year immediately came to mind. Here is a list of five amazing books written (or co-written) by Black millennials in 2016. They are absolute must reads.

 

 

Why the Academic Achievement Gap is a Racist Idea
Black Perspectives.  Oct 20, 2016

But few testing critics are bursting its biggest bubble: the existence of the achievement gap itself. To believe in the existence of any sort of racial hierarchy is actually to believe in a racist idea. The achievement gap between the races–with Whites and Asians at the top and Blacks and Latinos at the bottom–is a racial hierarchy.

 

 

Clinton and Trump need to address police violence in debate
The Conversation. Oct 6, 2016

These staggering statistics underscore the urgent need for Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to move beyond symbolic gestures and instead clearly articulate how they intend to address this issue if elected president of the United States.

 

 

'Black Soul'? Why I Felt Offended By Khizr Khan’s Choice Of Words For Trump
The Huffington Post. Aug 3, 2016

Khizr Khan should have used a different choice of words on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. He should have found a different metaphor to convey Trump’s obvious lack of compassion and empathy. Because the metaphor he used had racist undertones.

 

 

Could Trump Be Nurturing the Next Hitler?
History News Network. June 29, 2016

Donald Trump more closely resembles in history that leading American eugenicist whose ideas nurtured Hitler: Madison Grant. This year marks the uncelebrated centennial of Grant’s most infamous polemic—The Passing of the Great Race—a book that passed across the Atlantic and into the arms of Germany’s future Fuhrer.

 

 

The 11 Most Racist U.S. Presidents
The Huffington Post. May 27, 2016

There have been many frightfully racist U.S. presidents in American history. Here are the 11 most racist U.S. presidents of all time.

 

 

The 15 most racist Oscar films of all time: Here's why #OscarsSoWhite is not a surprise
Salon. Feb 24, 2016

Since the first Academy Awards ceremony in 1929, bodies and images clothed in racist ideas have found it much easier than non-stereotypical Black bodies and images to reach the White halls of the Oscars. #OscarsSoWhite is about the glaring lack of antiracist bodies and images and the glaring abundance of racist bodies and images honored in the White halls of the Oscars.

 

 

We Can No Longer Ignore the Power of Woodrow Wilson's Racist Ideas
The Chronicle Of Higher Education. Dec 17, 2015

About a month has passed since members of Princeton University’s Black Justice League staged their 32-hour sit-in in the president’s office. The argument over whether to purge President Woodrow Wilson’s name from a Princeton dining hall.

Why Standardized Tests Have Standardized Postracial Ideology
American Associate of University Professors. December 2016

Affirmative action, despite the Supreme Court’s 2016 ruling in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, may be on its last legs. The antiracist fight of the future should not be merely a defensive fight to save it. The antiracist fight of the future should be an offensive one, against postracial ideology, and against postracial admissions factors, starting with standardized tests.

 

 

Ibram X. Kendi's 6 Favorite Books
The Week. Dec 11, 2016

The whole time I was reading Wilkerson's book, subtitled The Epic Story of America's Great Migration, my mind was filled with mental pictures. The scene-setting, the dialogue, the character development...I still cannot believe that this award-winning work is nonfiction.

 

 

The Promise and Peril of the Civil Rights Act of 1866
AHA Today. Oct 11, 2016

I, like many historians, have used the term “voting rights” while chronicling this political bloodbath. But voting has been a contested privilege, not a right.

 

 

The Party of Lincoln? Yeah That Was Racist Too
Timeline. Sept 13, 2016

So yes, Republicans are “the party of Lincoln” — in all the flawed, conflicted, racist roots of the party’s actual creation story. The Party of Lincoln remains the grand old party of racist white men.

 

 

Brother to Brother: An Open Letter to Nate Parker
Black Perspectives. Aug 22, 2016

I have felt these feelings many times during my scholarly gazes into the past at Black male radicals who were as powerfully sexist as they were antiracist—men who felt as threatened by feminism as they were by racism; men who reinforced rape culture as tightly as they reinforced an antiracist (patriarchal) culture.

 

 

On the Gender Racism of Black Men Towards Black Women
The Feminist Wire. Aug 1, 2016

 Gender racism is any idea that suggests any racial-gender group is inferior or superior in any way to another racial-gender group. Think about it this way. To call women lazy is sexism. To call Black people lazy is racism. To call Black women lazy is gender racism.

 

 

Post-Traumatic Slave Syndrome is a Racist Idea
Black Perspectives. June 21, 2016

I am faintly hoping that the new Roots miniseries on the History Channel had the same antiracist impact, especially in uprooting one tree of racist thought that has grown rapidly in recent years. I am talking about the theory that Black people are suffering from post-traumatic slave syndrome, or PTSS. 

 

 

George Zimmerman is a poor man's Donald Trump
Salon. May 13, 2016

Zimmerman is almost certainly lying. He probably has no plans to give the money to all those police unions that are imagining a war against law enforcement and dismissing the statistics that say otherwise.

 

 

On the Racist Ideas Jesse Owens Could Not Outrun
Black Perspectives. Feb 21, 2016

If I watch Race, I do not expect to see Owens’s true after story to the 1936 Olympics. I do not expect to see the true story of both Adolf Hitler and Franklin Delano Roosevelt standing on the same racist plain in refusing to congratulate Jesse Owens. I do not expect to see the true story of Owens bitterly complaining about receiving better treatment in Nazi Germany than the United States.