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Some 68 years after Brown v. Board, similar foes continue stubbornly fighting progress

During a 2014 symposium marking the 60th anniversary of the Brown v. Topeka Board of Education decision, a statement from one of the plaintiffs offered what today feels like prescient insight. Many of the Virginia plaintiffs in the class-action lawsuit, feared integration and would have preferred separate and actually equal.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

This is what white privilege looks like

A few months ago, I was pulled over by a Springfield, Illinois-area police officer for a minor traffic violation. He shined a flashlight in my car and said, “Mr. Reeder, are you carrying?” I replied that no, my firearm was home locked up in a safe.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

In combating racism, truth telling remains the best and most effective tool

"Sunlight is the best disinfectant.” “If we do not learn history, we are condemned to repeat it.” Americans often turn to these two aphorisms in discussions of public policy and usually for good reason. Both emphasize the value of openly and honestly confronting the truth – wherever it may lead.

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Congress News Top Story

‘A crisis that is hiding in plain sight’: Missing and murdered women of color

WASHINGTON — Parents at a Thursday congressional hearing about missing and murdered women of color detailed their frustrating attempts to get the attention of law enforcement and adequate media coverage. “This is a crisis that is hiding in plain sight,” said Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Democrat and chair of the U.S. House Oversight Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

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Education Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

N.C. A&T conversation series examines redlining, racial history

When Yvonne Johnson was a young girl in east Greensboro, it was in many ways a different world. She split time between her parents’ house on Beech Street, about a block from N.C. A&T, and her aunt’s place on Market Street, where there were rows of corn on one side and faculty housing on the other.

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Education News Top Story

Book banning battles hit North Carolina schools

Conservatives target works dealing with race and LGBTQ themes Parents of sixth graders in a gifted language-arts class at Marvin Ridge Middle School received an email from their children’s teacher last month warning them that a book selected for the class’s unit on African American literature would at times be “uncomfortable.”

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

Right-wing extremism hits new lows but “responsible” conservatives remain largely silent

These are, by any fair estimation, divided times in our country. Especially since the onset of the pandemic, the level of venom and bitterness that’s gripped millions of Americans is a sometimes-frightening phenomenon to behold. This troubling reality has clearly been fueled at times by the relative anonymity provided by internet, but it’s also the case that many of those voicing and spurring on aggression, hatred, and even physical violence are only too happy put their names and faces out there.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

In defending Paul Gosar, Republicans show just how scared they are

Veteran journalist and one-time Republican laments the extremism that's overtaken his former party What does it say about a political party that defends a member as toxic and repulsive as Paul Gosar? What does it say that 207 of the 210 Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives...

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Law and the Courts Top Story

In Georgia, testimony concludes in trial of men accused of killing unarmed Black jogger, Ahmaud Arbery

Black pastors flock to courthouse from across the country as prosecutor pokes at credibility of man who fired fatal shots The lead prosecutor in Travis McMichael’s murder trial hammered him Thursday for contradictions and failing to take steps to avoid the deadly confrontation that ended with him shooting Ahmaud Arbery on a suburban Brunswick street in February 2020.

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Defending Democracy News Top Story

U.S. House Democrats seek to expose, call out right-wing extremism

Lawmakers introduce censure of Arizona congressman over violent video, ask why federal judges hired law clerk alleged to have sent racist text Nearly 30 Democratic U.S. House members plan to introduce a resolution censuring their Arizona Republican colleague Rep. Paul Gosar for social media posts that depicted him killing New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

The political right and the myth of color-blind capitalism

By any fair assessment, the United States has come a long way over the last century and a half in overcoming its original sins of slavery and institutionalized racism. A century and a half ago – the span of just two lifetimes – millions of Black Americans were held in bondage by force of law and treated as chattel property because of their skin color.

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Higher Ed Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

PW exclusive: Journalism historian discusses role of American newspapers in abetting white supremacy

Prof. Kathy Roberts Forde previews upcoming talk at UNC-Chapel Hill and reflects on recent controversies that have roiled her alma mater Journalists like to think of themselves as part of a long lineage of truth seekers, a “fourth estate” in American life keeping government honest and shining light in dark places since the founding of the republic.

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Top Story

Anniversary provides powerful reminder of racism that afflicts NC’s death penalty

A few months ago, my former client Robert Bacon died in the hospital at Central Prison. Because of COVID-19, he died alone. His loving sister had only a video call with him a few weeks after medical staff stopped Robert’s cancer treatments.  I’ve been thinking about Robert a lot lately, because twenty years ago this week, he was scheduled to be executed.

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Education News Top Story

Johnston County school board acquiesces to demands of Board of Commissioners

Conservative push to control how history is taught results in new policy directive Satisfied with a policy revision banning Critical Race Theory (CRT) in Johnston County Public Schools, County Commissioners on Monday unanimously agreed to release $7.9 million in new school funding commissioners withheld over the summer because the district had no such prohibition in place.

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