My husband, whom I married at the age of 22 was my first African-American friend and the first black man outside of our close knit African community that I dated. Not only was he nothing like what I thought he may have been--neither were his mother and sister.
Black History Month is a time of reflection. This year I've been reflecting on my own black history and how it brought me back home to Baltimore.
The cause of the Black job crisis is not just the economy. It's the lack of power. No matter how "strong" the economy, we are disproportionately unemployed and in low-wage jobs.
When the Black and Missing Foundation, Inc (www.BAMFI.org) began in 2008, 30 percent of all persons missing were of color. Sadly, that number has grown -- seemingly to a new record setting incline.
Early November 2014, I received an email from a colleague, Randall Jenson, who works for the Kansas City Anti-Violence Project, alerting me that in Missouri, not too far from Ferguson, another black man had died.
Rather than resisting or trying to change such cries, there is an opportunity for those of us in historically privileged and powerful positions in the culture to listen, learn and better understand the longing behind the words.
This happened in daylight, not the murky suspicion of night. The driver's door was ajar so there was no obstructed view.
The Academy-award nominated movie, Selma, tries to capture the intensity of the 1960s as brave men and women sought to further the Civil Rights Movement, but even a well-produced movie can't do some things justice...
We'll know Black lives matter when public safety responses aren't defined by arrests or prison admissions but by work to reduce contact with the criminal justice system in the first place.
Maggie Walker had every imaginable obstacle in her way and she overcame each through tireless persistence. May she be recognized for her life dedicated to others and take her place among the heroes and leaders that have shaped this great nation.
Ezell did not have an easy road. He did not deserve to die. It's that simple. We have to be willing to re-pave the road that he tried to navigate.
Too often when we do find the strength to vocalize our challenges, our own communities can serve as barriers working to prevent us from truly making progress to build a brighter future.
In view of these difficult realties, we want to use Black History Month as a time to remember all struggles for black and Latino civil rights, so it serves as a moment not only to reflect but also to mobilize by demanding justice for Jessica, Aiyana and Orta and all black and Latino lives.
Evidence suggests that when some or all of these considerations are taken into account, health disparities can be effectively reduced -- even in populations that traditionally might not prefer new technologies, such as older adults.
Black history is American history, a story of oppression and liberation rooted in the libertarian idea of individual rights.
Every clown has a story about when they knew they wanted to be a clown. Perhaps it was that first trip to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, or an insatiable desire to affect others through laughter.