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Black Voices

Giving Culture to Our Kids: Reflections During Black History Month

Hulya Aksu | Posted 04.23.2015 | Black Voices
Hulya Aksu

I know after my husband and I pass, our kids will be less Turkish than they were when we were alive. And in turn their kids will be less Turkish, and so there's a chance our legacy and history will disappear within just two lifetimes. What was built over thousands of years will be erased in two generations.

No ESEA Bill Is Better Than One That Fails to Protect the Poorest Children

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 04.22.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

For fifty years Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) has been the primary source of federal funding targeted to schools to serve poor children. Sadly, from the beginning states didn't keep their end of the bargain.

No Longer Silent: Chronicling Queer African Lives

Diriye Osman | Posted 04.22.2015 | Gay Voices
Diriye Osman

Fairytales For Lost Children is a book that was born out of silence. This is interesting to me because there is such a playful use of syntax in this book. The characters reach for ways to express themselves and end up creating their own language.

The Achievement Gap vs. The Justice Gap: Race vs. Redemption

Kanene Holder | Posted 04.21.2015 | Education
Kanene Holder

The achievement gap will never close until we as a society, especially educators, tackle the justice gap head-on.

A Salute to the African American Playwright August Wilson

Regina Fraser and Pat Johnson | Posted 04.21.2015 | Black Voices
Regina Fraser and Pat Johnson

This film is a beautiful legacy. It sheds light on a very gifted man who, like many creative people, was raised under difficult circumstances in an underserved area of Pittsburgh. All of his plays were "doors" into the black experience, and from many eras of the American story.

Walter Naegle Talks About His Relationship With Bayard Rustin and Equality (AUDIO)

Charlotte Robinson | Posted 04.21.2015 | Gay Voices
Charlotte Robinson

In celebration of Black History Month, I talked with Walter Naegle, who was pioneer civil rights activist Bayard Rustin's partner for the last decade of Rustin's life.

On Being '-American'

Janesh Rahlan | Posted 04.18.2015 | Politics
Janesh Rahlan

There is no one parameter that qualifies somebody as American or even a set of qualities that comprise a monolith of American culture. While Jindal's comments are directly aimed at Indian-Americans, they're insulting to all immigrants and the general creation of this country.

An Apology to My Fellow Black Woman

Nancy Laws | Posted 04.16.2015 | Black Voices
Nancy Laws

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.

The Chapel Hill Shooting: Why Our Lives Depend on Closing the Global Achievement Gap

Katie Mgongolwa | Posted 04.14.2015 | Education
Katie Mgongolwa

Who is teaching kids problem-solving, or entrepreneurism, or how to collaborate and appreciate diversity? Tests don't really assess that.

A Brooklyn Clown Is Living His Dream

Johnathan Lee Iverson | Posted 04.13.2015 | Black Voices
Johnathan Lee Iverson

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.

An Open Letter to My 3 Extraordinary Brown Girls

Nancy Laws | Posted 04.12.2015 | Black Voices
Nancy Laws

You will hear a lot about what it means to be a black woman -- some good, and a lot of it bad. In those moments, when you sit back, confused, and striving to find your own definition of what it means to be a black girl in America, I want you to think about a few things.

Race, Caste, Gandhi and King in the 21st Century: A Dialogue With Pandit Dasa

Chris Fici | Posted 04.10.2015 | Religion
Chris Fici

Discrimination, whether raced-based, caste-based, gender-based, or religion-based is just plain discrimination and it springs from ignorance and has no spiritual value. It only serves to distance us from other human beings and from God. It breeds more hatred and disunity inside of the person discriminating.

A Better Way to Spend $60 Billion? Expand Pell Grants

Carolyn Ash | Posted 04.11.2015 | Education
Carolyn Ash

Let's make an even greater investment in the Pell Grant program. And let's eradicate labor market inequalities that reward white high school dropouts with greater access to jobs than black graduates with a community college degree.

This Is How We Win

Diriye Osman | Posted 04.11.2015 | Gay Voices
Diriye Osman

You may feel like your future is slipping from your grasp, that if you don't rush now to greet your dreams you might lose out on them, but please wait. If you are coming from an unsupportive environment with regards to your sexual orientation, the best thing to do is to establish your independence.

Push for Progress: Children Cannot Wait

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 04.08.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

So many children have lost ground as the trumped-up fear of excessive debt children did not cause has been used by some in Congress to cut safety net programs we know work.

Dear Empire Critics, Stop Hating. You Just Don't Get It.

Ernest Owens | Posted 04.07.2015 | Black Voices
Ernest Owens

It's a prime-time drama for entertainment and reflection, people, not a political editorial or a public-policy initiative. Lee Daniels is a creator who should be given a right to fully explore his cinematic talent without being constrained by the narrow social confines of "making black people look good."

How We Did the Maldives on the Cheap

Oneika Raymond | Posted 04.06.2015 | Travel
Oneika Raymond

"Budget travel" is relative, so when speaking about the Maldives our definition needs to be a bit flexible, and our expectations need to be adjusted.

A Call to End Child Poverty Now

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 04.01.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

It is a national moral disgrace that there are 14.7 million poor children and 6.5 million extremely poor children in the United States of America -- the world's largest economy. It is also unnecessary, costly and the greatest threat to our future national, economic and military security.

Students of Color and Women are Still Prone To Intense Harassment on College Campuses

Elwood D. Watson | Posted 03.30.2015 | Impact
Elwood D. Watson

All institutions of higher learning need to pay close attention to the concerns of students of color and women, aggressively listening to their concerns as well as making a valiant effort to produce a college campus that is receptive, stress free as possible and attentive to all students.

25 Ways to Nourish Your Self-Love and Your Life

Kemi Nekvapil | Posted 04.01.2015 | Women
Kemi Nekvapil

The journey of self-love is a long one, but it is much easier to navigate when you have self-loving actions and ways of being that you can call upon when needed. Here are 25 ways to nourish your self-love so that you can be kinder to yourself and to others.

Black Struggles and Achievements Black History Month: Why America Must Never Forget

Stephen Balkaran | Posted 03.30.2015 | Black Voices
Stephen Balkaran

As we reflect on Black History month, we must truly be proud of the contributions of the African Americans in every aspect of our society. African Americans, despite their history of oppression and exclusion, remain committed to America.

The Club Nobody Wants to Join: Mothers With Sons in Prison

S. L. Young | Posted 04.01.2015 | Black Voices
S. L. Young

There aren't any justifiable reasons that the alarming school-to-prison pipeline trends should continue. These systemic issues don't just take a village to address; it takes a nation and a world to resolve any ongoing and preventable injustices.

Diversifying Hollywood About More Than the Academy Awards

Brennon Marcano | Posted 03.31.2015 | 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 03.30.2015 | 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 03.25.2015 | 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.