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Black Voices

Diversifying Hollywood About More Than the Academy Awards

Brennon Marcano | Posted 01.29.2015 | Entertainment
Brennon Marcano

Though we call it "entertainment" what we see in movies and on TV drives the broader cultural conversation and has an important place in our society. Now, more than ever, it's important that women and people of color are a part of that exchange.

How to End Child Poverty for 60 Percent of Poor Children and 72 Percent of All Poor Black Children Today

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 01.28.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

It is a national disgrace that so many poor children live in the United States of America -- the world's richest economy. It doesn't have to be this way. It's costly. And it's the greatest threat to our future national, economic and military security.

Of LGBT Youth and Their Parents

Diriye Osman | Posted 01.23.2015 | Gay Voices
Diriye Osman

No one who has ever come out as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender to their family, particularly their parents, will ever forget that life-altering moment. Sometimes the connective thread will be cut; other times that bond will be deepened, enriched by this new reality.

Is America a Sheep or a Goat?

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 01.23.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

The national holiday celebrating Dr. King's birthday is over, but I hope we will heed and act on his 1967 declaration and work to win the first victory right here at home in the biggest economy on earth and end the shame of 14.7 million children being the poorest Americans by ending child poverty now.

Dean Atta, Poetry and Poise

Diriye Osman | Posted 01.21.2015 | Gay Voices
Diriye Osman

Dean Atta is a poet who's gifted, politically engaged and rigorous in his approach to his work. This is a potent mix and an appealing one at that. I ask him what advice he would give to his thirteen-year-old self and his response is wise and winningly direct.

Historic Places as Sites of Conscience: Shockoe Bottom's Potential to Change Society

National Trust for Historic Preservation | Posted 01.26.2015 | Black Voices
National Trust for Historic Preservation

In Richmond, a new alliance of social justice activists and historic preservationists has formed to protect Shockoe Bottom against incompatible development. Leadership of the alliance includes Preservation Virginia; Defenders for Freedom, Justice & Equality; and a working group of preservationists from nearby Church Hill.

Why the Story of Muhammad Ali's Rebellion Matters Today: Part 5

Dave Kreissman | Posted 01.20.2015 | Sports
Dave Kreissman

If you've been following my historical view of Muhammad Ali, you've learned about his rise to prominence, his religious and political awakening and his repudiation by the boxing establishment and mainstream American culture.

Celebrating Dr. King Through Serving

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 01.16.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

I first heard Dr. King speak in person at a Spelman College chapel service during my senior year in college. Dr. King was just 31 but he had already gained a national reputation during the successful Montgomery Bus Boycott five years earlier.

Je Suis Nigeria

Michael Shammas | Posted 01.16.2015 | World
Michael Shammas

American media should not pretend as if nothing is happening as Nigeria continues to battle the ignorant cancer calling itself Boko Haram. Nigeria's struggle with radicalism is at least as newsworthy as our own.

A Mother's Wish for Her Son: Just Stay Alive

Kim Keating | Posted 01.16.2015 | Black Voices
Kim Keating

My son turns 14 today. I'm sure he's wishing for all sorts of stuff: an Xbox, Beats headphones, maybe even good grades. However, my wish for my son on his 14th birthday is much more fundamental. I wish for him to be able to walk to the grocery store without being harassed or gunned down. I wish for him to live.

Race Relations Remain an Issue of Signifcant Concern to Many Americans

Elwood D. Watson | Posted 01.15.2015 | Black Voices
Elwood D. Watson

The fact is that race has always been a major issue in America. For many blacks and other non-whites, it has been the perennial issue. When W. E. B. Du Bois stated that "the problem of the 20th century would be the problem of the color line," he was right on target.

Theater Called Out For Blackface Portrayal Of NHL Star

The Huffington Post | Ron Dicker | Posted 01.15.2015 | Black Voices

A Montreal theater company is facing criticism for using an actor in blackface to portray black Canadiens player P.K. Subban. A skit with the Subba...

What Happens When the World's Largest Queer Record Label Closes and No One Notices?

J Mase III | Posted 01.13.2015 | Gay Voices
J Mase III

The fact that an organization with a roster of 200 people can find a way to concretely analyze their privilege sets a standard. I want to believe in a world where we do not shy away from conversations about racial justice.

We Will Not Be Moved

Cornell William Brooks | Posted 01.10.2015 | Black Voices
Cornell William Brooks

One cannot truly impact the world from a safe distance, and we have never been afraid to take our position on the frontline. Our team will continue to work on the issues in the communities that need our help the most.

Every Child Deserves a Fair Chance

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 01.10.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

As a nation it's time to close our hypocrisy gap in the treatment of our children and value and protect our children -- all of them. We need to examine with urgency how we treat our children and the gap between what we say and what we do.

The Little-Known Story That Lit a Civil Rights Fuse and Created the NAACP: My Great-Uncle's Call to Action

Burke E. Strunsky | Posted 01.09.2015 | Black Voices
Burke E. Strunsky

In the tradition of investigative, watchdog journalism, that particular news story has since been credited for lighting the fuse that led to the creation of the national civil rights organization known today as the NAACP.

The Relevance of 'Selma' Today

Marcus Bright | Posted 01.08.2015 | Black Voices
Marcus Bright

As we reflect on the movie Selma and the upcoming Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday it is important to not only remember the dream but to remember the cost of the dream. Our challenge is to lose ourselves in the mission of making this country a better place with more avenues of opportunity for all people.

A Writer's Guide to Surviving Trauma

Diriye Osman | Posted 01.08.2015 | Healthy Living
Diriye Osman

Whenever readers ask me how I started writing, I find myself stumped, because I know people want their anecdotes edited and perfectly formed. The real...

Integration or Apartheid for Us and Our Children

Norma Cook Everist | Posted 01.05.2015 | Education
Norma Cook Everist

Don't blame public schools or teachers. Our children cannot wait another generation for integration. This country cannot wait for a way to live together and learn with one another.

Not In My Backyard

Kristen Coke | Posted 01.03.2015 | Black Voices
Kristen Coke

Don't let yourselves forget. Live in this moment. Acknowledge your fellow black Americans in this country and the fact that they are not being treated equally. Engage with this, and prove that we can work towards a better America.

Sheriff, Not Police, To Investigate Tamir Rice Shooting

AP | JOHN SEEWER | Posted 01.02.2015 | Crime

The investigation of a Cleveland police officer's deadly shooting of a 12-year-old boy carrying a pellet gun is being handed over to a county sheriff'...

Prayers For Our Children For The New Year

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 01.02.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

In a world rife with war, religious, racial, gender, sectarian, and political strife, when so many children lack safety, enough food, shelter, health care, and education and suffer unthinkable losses of parents to disease, violence, and war, I hope this New Year will bring adults closer to our common sense and moral responsibility for children's well being.

Creating Yourself with Words

Diriye Osman | Posted 12.29.2014 | Gay Voices
Diriye Osman

There's a renegade thrill to Vonnegut's wisdom. Going into the arts as a career can render you into fiscal dreck, but the act of producing art, particularly writing, will endow your interiority with a sense of plenitude, of satisfaction that is hard to replicate.

I Was Taught to Be Racist for My Own Protection

Lloyd Burnett | Posted 12.27.2014 | Black Voices
Lloyd Burnett

My parents were terrified that the same racism that they had endured would cause me the same tremendous pain and frustrating limitations as it had caused them. They wanted to protect me from the experiences of hate that they had lived.

How to Invest in Miracles

Harriet McDonald | Posted 12.24.2014 | Impact
Harriet McDonald

By the time they were 18, each boy had lived in multiple foster homes. They survived their childhoods without compassion or stability. The idea of being "cared for" was a foreign concept.