As with the recent film Selma, Watchman will acquaint or reacquaint Americans with the nation's long struggle for civil rights. As Selma prompted renewed attention to LBJ, Harper Lee's new book will rekindle the debate over Atticus Finch. Those who revere him may have to reassess his heroic status.
Fashion, throughout history, has created an illustrative identity within African-American history. Fashion is a statement and speaks volumes with little to no words.
The American LGBT community has increasingly begun to contribute to the success of LGBT rights worldwide. However, the contributions go both ways. Countries in some other parts of the world have adopted gay equality laws much earlier than the United States.
For a while after I came out, everything was OK. The bullies couldn't call me gay as an insult, because I was gay, and I was finally opening up. But I discovered that the moment I stopped acting straight is when people began getting uncomfortable. Once I stopped acting the way they wanted, they stopped treating me the way I wanted.
While many Illinoisans know some of the more prominent names associated with the 1960's Civil Rights movement in the United States, such as Martin Luther King Jr. or Rosa Parks, many might not realize that Illinois is home to some of its own important Civil Rights leaders.
The chief justice of Alabama's supreme court is making a stand in the courthouse door. This is not literally happening, the way it did in 1963 when Alabama Gov. George Wallace made a similar stand in the schoolhouse door. But in both cases, high Alabama officials are trying to preserve the state's ability to discriminate against a segment of its population.
American history is not black history, and our history is not America's to dictate. Until we understand that and begin teaching our history to ourselves in ways that serve our own cultural needs instead of the majority's, we will continue to internalize this nation's prejudices against us, instead of arming ourselves to appropriately demonize and deflect them.
During Black History Month, I'm reminded yet again of the ways that the struggle for civil rights is interwoven with the struggle for workers' rights. Perhaps no one better personifies that link than A. Philip Randolph, the first African-American inducted into the Labor Department's Hall of Honor.
It's raining effective advocacy and good news in the field of mental health. That is something to celebrate and love any week of the year.
Some Alabama probate judges, at least for the time being, are defying the United States Supreme Court today, refusing to grant marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples while other judges throughout the state are granting those licenses.
Developing a "Strategic Concept for the LGBT Community" is long overdue. This, while US leadership is important, must be the result of a truly international cooperation. It must become a priority for the transatlantic community.
I look back on my own piece of the LGBT struggle with utter respect and reverence. As gay acceptance is sweeping the country at an unprecedented rate, let it do so in a way that allows us to sing our songs without being viewed as exclusionary.
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.
Rather than approaching crime from the perspective of restorative justice and public health, seeking to help people to reform and re-integrate, our country has instead not only continued in a model of punishment that can only be described as "medieval", but has grown it to a scale unprecedented in world history.
If Roy Moore isn't prepared to uphold the law, than perhaps the role of Chief Justice isn't right for him. And if he doesn't recognize that, then perhaps others should recognize it for him and remove him from office. The Court has lots of room for different legal thinkers, but it has no place for those who refuse to think about the law.
Actress Tara Ochs is the quintessential working artist. Being casted alongside Oprah Winfrey in Selma, one of the year's most important films, was likely the last goal on Ochs' mind, until it happened.