Thursday, December 31, 2015


by Andre E. Johnson
R3 Founder and Managing Editor

We are pleased to announced that we have become part of the family of blogs. You can find us at our new site here. Being a part of the family will give us a bigger platform to share our ideas and a larger network in which to collaborate. We are excited at the direction we are heading and invite you to become one of our contributors. Just drop us a line at and you are on your way!!  

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Why Do White Lives Matter More Than Black Lives?

Baltimore has captured the country’s attention for more than two weeks now.

Yet another unarmed Black man—Freddie Gray in this instance—had an encounter with law enforcement. He died April 19 a week after he sustained a fatal spinal injury while he was in police custody. People protested peacefully for more than a week, but the national media did not descend upon our charming little city until a Monday night riot broke out.

Pundits engaged in discussions—some of them heated—as to whether Freddie Gray was dead because of the color of his skin. Was racism a factor in the death of Freddie Gray at the hands of police?

On May 1, State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby filed charges against the six police officers involved in Gray’s April 12 arrest. Some people argue that race is not an issue because three of the officers charged are black and three are white.

What people fail to understand is that racism has two distinct paths with two distinct destinations: privilege and assignation of human worth travel along one path toward a dominant group – a preferred group; and dehumanization and deprivation travel along a different path to an oppressed group – a spurned group. This dynamic gives rise to self-assurance (some say arrogance) within the dominant group and self-hate within the oppressed group.

Read the rest here

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

From Ferguson to Baltimore: The Fruits of Government-Sponsored Segregation

In Baltimore in 1910, a black Yale law school graduate purchased a home in a previously all-white neighborhood. The Baltimore city government reacted by adopting a residential segregation ordinance, restricting African Americans to designated blocks. Explaining the policy, Baltimore’s mayor proclaimed, “Blacks should be quarantined in isolated slums in order to reduce the incidence of civil disturbance, to prevent the spread of communicable disease into the nearby White neighborhoods, and to protect property values among the White majority.”

Thus began a century of federal, state, and local policies to quarantine Baltimore’s black population in isolated slums—policies that continue to the present day, as federal housing subsidy policies still disproportionately direct low-income black families to segregated neighborhoods and away from middle class suburbs.

Whenever young black men riot in response to police brutality or murder, as they have done in Baltimore this week, we’re tempted to think we can address the problem by improving police quality—training officers not to use excessive force, implementing community policing, encouraging police to be more sensitive, prohibiting racial profiling, and so on. These are all good, necessary, and important things to do. But such proposals ignore the obvious reality that the protests are not really (or primarily) about policing.

In 1968, following hundreds of similar riots nationwide, a commission appointed by President Lyndon Johnson concluded that “[o]ur nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white—separate and unequal” and that “[s]egregation and poverty have created in the racial ghetto a destructive environment totally unknown to most white Americans.” The Kerner Commission (headed by Illinois Governor Otto Kerner) added that “[w]hat white Americans have never fully understood—but what the Negro can never forget—is that white society is deeply implicated in the ghetto. White institutions created it, white institutions maintain it, and white society condones it.”

In the last 50 years, the two societies have become even more unequal. Although a relatively small black middle class has been permitted to integrate itself into mainstream America, those left behind are more segregated now than they were in 1968.

When the Kerner Commission blamed “white society” and “white institutions,” it employed euphemisms to avoid naming the culprits everyone knew at the time. It was not a vague white society that created ghettos but government—federal, state, and local—that employed explicitly racial laws, policies, and regulations to ensure that black Americans would live impoverished, and separately from whites. Baltimore’s ghetto was not created by private discrimination, income differences, personal preferences, or demographic trends, but by purposeful action of government in violation of the Fifth, Thirteenth, and Fourteenth Amendments. These constitutional violations have never been remedied, and we are paying the price in the violence we saw this week.

Read the rest here

The Benedict Option: Why the Religious Right Is Considering An All-Out Withdrawal From Politics

Have you heard of the Benedict Option? If not, you will soon.

It's the name of a deeply pessimistic cultural project that's capturing the imaginations of social conservatives as they come to terms with the realization that the hopes and assumptions that animated the religious right over the past 35-odd years have been dashed by the sweeping triumph of the movement for same-sex marriage.

From the start, the religious right has been marked by two qualities: optimism and a faith in majoritarianism. The qualities are connected. Think back to Jerry Falwell's Moral Majority. The name conveyed its ideology: A majority of Americans are morally and religiously conservative. To the extent that the nation's politics and culture don't reflect that, it's because they have been co-opted by a secular liberal minority that has placed itself in control of such elite institutions as the media, Hollywood, the universities, the judiciary, and the federal bureaucracy. The proper response is to take back these institutions using democratic means, primarily elections.

In other words, play by the rules of the democratic game, and social conservatives will eventually triumph.

This sounded like a fantasy at first, since the movement began among evangelical Protestants, who never made up more than about 25 percent of the population, and whose style of worship and belief was profoundly off-putting to non-evangelical Christians, let alone to more secular Americans. But ecumenical and inter-religious efforts throughout the 1980s and early 1990s helped to forge an alliance among conservative believers in many faith traditions: evangelicals, but also Catholics, Mormons, Jews, and Muslims. This made talk of majorities at least plausible, and seemed to vindicate the optimism, too.

Before the present moment, the one flicker of genuine gloom came in 1996, after a series of court rulings seemed to signal that secular liberalism was using the judiciary to thwart the will of the people. That inspired the conservative religious magazine First Things (for which I later worked) to run a notorious symposium titled "The End of Democracy?" An unsigned editorial introducing the symposium suggested that religious Americans would soon have to decide on options ranging "from noncompliance to resistance to civil disobedience to morally justified revolution."

The incendiary rhetoric sparked a firestorm among conservatives, but it's important to recognize that it followed directly from the most fundamental premises of the religious right. If it was in fact true that social conservatives were the American majority, and if it was also the case that the judicial branch of government was actively and undemocratically impeding the majority, then it did indeed follow that religious conservatives were faced with (as the editorial put it) "the prospect — some might say the present reality — of despotism" in the United States. And that called for a radical, perhaps revolutionary, response.

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America’s Changing Religious Landscape

The Christian share of the U.S. population is declining, while the number of U.S. adults who do not identify with any organized religion is growing, according to an extensive new survey by the Pew Research Center. Moreover, these changes are taking place across the religious landscape, affecting all regions of the country and many demographic groups. While the drop in Christian affiliation is particularly pronounced among young adults, it is occurring among Americans of all ages. The same trends are seen among whites, blacks and Latinos; among both college graduates and adults with only a high school education; and among women as well as men. (Explore the data with our interactive database tool.)

To be sure, the United States remains home to more Christians than any other country in the world, and a large majority of Americans – roughly seven-in-ten – continue to identify with some branch of the Christian faith.1 But the major new survey of more than 35,000 Americans by the Pew Research Center finds that the percentage of adults (ages 18 and older) who describe themselves as Christians has dropped by nearly eight percentage points in just seven years, from 78.4% in an equally massive Pew Research survey in 2007 to 70.6% in 2014. Over the same period, the percentage of Americans who are religiously unaffiliated – describing themselves as atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular” – has jumped more than six points, from 16.1% to 22.8%. And the share of Americans who identify with non-Christian faiths also has inched up, rising 1.2 percentage points, from 4.7% in 2007 to 5.9% in 2014. Growth has been especially great among Muslims and Hindus, albeit from a very low base.

The drop in the Christian share of the population has been driven mainly by declines among mainline Protestants and Catholics. Each of those large religious traditions has shrunk by approximately three percentage points since 2007. The evangelical Protestant share of the U.S. population also has dipped, but at a slower rate, falling by about one percentage point since 2007.2

Even as their numbers decline, American Christians – like the U.S. population as a whole – are becoming more racially and ethnically diverse. Non-Hispanic whites now account for smaller shares of evangelical Protestants, mainline Protestants and Catholics than they did seven years earlier, while Hispanics have grown as a share of all three religious groups. Racial and ethnic minorities now make up 41% of Catholics (up from 35% in 2007), 24% of evangelical Protestants (up from 19%) and 14% of mainline Protestants (up from 9%).

Read the rest here

Thursday, April 23, 2015

#FergusonFiasco: Speaking Ferguson and Beyond Roundtable

The departments of Africana Studies and Theatre at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee will sponsor the Ferguson Fiasco: Speaking Ferguson and Beyond Roundtable Tuesday, April 28 at 7:00pm in the Frazier-Jelke building (Room A) on campus. The open forum will include the top student speeches from the Public Speaking classes with discussion afterwards. In addition, R3 managing editor, Andre E. Johnson will share some of his experiences in teaching Ferguson in both a classroom setting.

The class introduced students to the theories, practice, and criticism of public speaking as a responsibility of individuals living in a democracy. The class introduced students to the principles of oral communication with units in group communication, and mass media. Students also examined elements of ethical speaking, critical listening, and the critical thinking needed to interpret mediated messages. Additionally, the class focused on Ferguson and the Black Lives Matter campaign which introduced students to the African American oratorical tradition—with a specific focus on the Black prophetic tradition. In short, the Ferguson Fiasco along with the Black Lives Matters campaign grounded the study of communication principles and public speaking. This course The event is free and the public is invited. #FergusonFiasco

Sunday, April 19, 2015

The Ghost of Cornel West

NOR HELL A FURY LIKE A WOMAN SCORNED” is the best-known line from William Congreve’s The Mourning Bride. But I’m concerned with the phrase preceding it, which captures wrath in more universal terms: “Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned.” Even an angry Almighty can’t compete with mortals whose love turns to hate.

Cornel West’s rage against President Barack Obama evokes that kind of venom. He has accused Obama of political minstrelsy, calling him a “Rockefeller Republican in blackface”; taunted him as a “brown-faced Clinton”; and derided him as a “neoliberal opportunist.” In 2011, West and I were both speakers at a black newspaper conference in Chicago. During a private conversation, West asked how I escaped being dubbed an “Obama hater” when I was just as critical of the president as he was. I shared my three-part formula for discussing Obama before black audiences: Start with love for the man and pride in his epic achievement; focus on the unprecedented acrimony he faces as the nation’s first black executive; and target his missteps and failures. No matter how vehemently I disagree with Obama, I respect him as a man wrestling with an incredibly difficult opportunity to shape history. West looked into my eyes, sighed, and said: “Well, I guess that’s the difference between me and you. I don’t respect the brother at all.”

West’s animus is longstanding, and only intermittently broken by bouts of calculated love. In February 2007, West lambasted Obama’s decision to announce his bid for the presidency in Illinois, instead of at journalist Tavis Smiley’s State of the Black Union meeting in Virginia, calling it proof that the nascent candidate wasn’t concerned about black people. “Coming out there is not fundamentally about us. It’s about somebody else. [Obama’s] got large numbers of white brothers and sisters who have fears and anxieties, and he’s got to speak to them in such a way that he holds us at arm’s length.” It is hard to know which is more astonishing: West faulting Obama for starting his White House run in the state where he’d been elected to the U.S. Senate—or the breathtaking insularity of equating Smiley’s conference with black America.

Despite West’s disapproval of Obama, he eventually embraced the political phenom, crossing the country as a surrogate and touting his Oval Office bona fides. The two publicly embraced at a 2007 Apollo Theater fundraiser in Harlem during which West christened Obama “my brother... companion and comrade.” Obama praised West as “a genius, a public intellectual, a preacher, an oracle,” and “a loving person.”

Obama welcomed West’s support because he is a juggernaut of the academy and an intellectual icon among the black masses. If black American scholars are like prizefighters, then West is not the greatest ever; that title belongs to W.E.B. Du Bois. Not the most powerful ever; that’s Henry Louis Gates Jr. Not the most influential; that would include Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison, Black History Week founder Carter G. Woodson, historian John Hope Franklin, feminist bell hooks, Afrocentricity pioneer Molefi Kete Asante—and undoubtedly William Julius Wilson, whose sociological research has profoundly shaped racial debate and the public policies of at least two presidents. West may be a heavyweight champ of controversy, but he has competition as the pound-for-pound greatest: sociologists Oliver Cox, E. Franklin Frazier, and Lawrence D. Bobo; historians Robin D.G. Kelley, Nell Irvin Painter, and David Levering Lewis; political scientists Cedric Robinson and Manning Marable; art historian Richard J. Powell; legal theorists Kimberlé Crenshaw and Randall Kennedy; cultural critic Tricia Rose; and the literary scholars Hortense Spillers and Farah Jasmine Griffin—all are worthy contenders.

Read the rest here

How Corporate America Invented Christian America

In December 1940, as America was emerging from the Great Depression, more than 5,000 industrialists from across the nation made their yearly pilgrimage to the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City, convening for the annual meeting of the National Association of Manufacturers. The program promised an impressive slate of speakers: titans at General Motors, General Electric, Standard Oil, Mutual Life, and Sears, Roebuck; popular lecturers such as etiquette expert Emily Post and renowned philosopher-historian Will Durant; even FBI director J. Edgar Hoover. Tucked away near the end of the program was a name few knew initially, but one everyone would be talking about by the convention’s end: Reverend James W. Fifield Jr.

Handsome, tall, and somewhat gangly, the 41-year-old Congregationalist minister bore more than a passing resemblance to Jimmy Stewart. Addressing the crowd of business leaders, Fifield delivered a passionate defense of the American system of free enterprise and a withering assault on its perceived enemies in Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration. Decrying the New Deal’s “encroachment upon our American freedoms,” the minister listed a litany of sins committed by the Democratic government, ranging from its devaluation of currency to its disrespect for the Supreme Court. Singling out the regulatory state for condemnation, he denounced “the multitude of federal agencies attached to the executive branch” and warned ominously of “the menace of autocracy approaching through bureaucracy.”

It all sounds familiar enough today, but Fifield’s audience of executives was stunned. Over the preceding decade, as America first descended into and then crawled its way out of the Great Depression, the these titans of industry had been told, time and time again, that they were to blame for the nation’s downfall. Fifield, in contrast, insisted that they were the source of its salvation.
They just needed to do one thing: Get religion.

Read the rest here

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

The Past Imperfect of Barack Obama

Speaking at the ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of the Selma to Montgomery marches last month, President Obama posed a question that captured why many continue to view him as hope personified, while others seem to see him as an existential threat. “What greater form of patriotism is there than the belief that America is not yet finished?” he asked.
“Not yet finished”: That’s the line that separates worship of the founders from belief in the unrealized potential of what they began; it divides those who are nostalgic for freedoms supposedly lost which now must be restored, from those who recognize that the freedoms enjoyed by some have always been partial, while the struggle continues to guarantee them for all.
In case anyone missed that first “not yet,” Obama offered it four more times before the Selma speech was done: “We know the march is not yet over. We know the race is not yet won … Fifty years from Bloody Sunday, our march is not yet finished, but we’re getting closer. Two hundred and thirty-nine years after this nation’s founding our union is not yet perfect, but we are getting closer.”
More than merely a well-crafted string of phrases on a significant occasion, the notion that the United States is “not yet perfect” may be the single most enduring theme of Obama’s political life.
The speech largely credited with saving his candidacy in 2008—itself called “A More Perfect Union”—relied on the rhetorical interplay of “perfect” as an adjective and “perfect” as a verb. “This union may never be perfect,” he said, “but generation after generation has shown that it can always be perfected.”
Given in response to the controversy surrounding his longtime pastor Jeremiah Wright, the speech addressed race especially as “a part of our union that we have yet to perfect.”
This was for him not only an assessment of history, but a profession of faith. “I have asserted a firm conviction—a conviction rooted in my faith in God and my faith in the American people,” he said, “that working together we can move beyond some of our old racial wounds, and that in fact we have no choice if we are to continue on the path of a more perfect union.”
Read the rest here

Monday, April 13, 2015

Christianity’s Rocky Relationship With Sex

The west used to be a place: Europe. Then the place got bigger: it extended across the Atlantic, embracing (or digesting) North and South America, and in the 19th and 20th centuries, it built up vast territorial empires which for a while dominated every part of the globe by direct rule or by influence.

As a result, the west is no longer a place, but a state of mind, to be found on every beach and in every shopping mall throughout the world. And one of the things marking it out among ancient and modern cultures is its obsession with sex. This sexual chatter sets the west apart. Every culture has its own hang-ups about sex – but most of them don’t want sex to be a topic of conversation; that would be rude. That great contrast is one of the reasons why there is so much anti-western feeling in many parts of the world. Even when there are plenty of other issues to get angry about, this is an easy target on which to concentrate rage.

I’ve long brooded on this curious distinctiveness of the west, and over my lifetime, I have listened to the furious debates within western culture itself that arise out of it. Why should this peculiarity exist? In my new BBC Two series, Sex and the Church, exploring the west’s sexual obsession, I range over more than 2,000 years to argue that it stems from the religion that, over the centuries, slowly took over Europe: Christianity.

Christian churches tear themselves apart arguing about the role of women, contraception, abortion, homosexuality and how to deal with wretched revelations about clerical child abuse. And our modern western pride in our openness about talking and laughing about sex in almost any situation is simply a reversal of two millennia of largely negative Christian chatter on that same subject.

The puzzle is all the greater because the central figure in this religion, Jesus, had very little to say about sex. True, he insisted on monogamy in marriage, and on no divorce (both insistences being new to his own Jewish culture, and rather shocking) – but beyond that, virtually nothing. Indeed, one story about him, in John’s Gospel, is a clear rebuke to those who want to be punitive about sex. He was teaching in the Jerusalem Temple, where the Dome of the Rock now stands, when a group of men dragged before him a woman accused of adultery. They asked Jesus whether they should stone her to death, the usual Jewish penalty for adultery. All he said was: “He that is without sin, let him cast the first stone.” And when they’d all shuffled off looking sheepish, all he said to her was that she should go off and sin no more. It’s a story of forgiveness and mercy, both of which are themes that run through Jesus’s teaching, and which might be thought to be at the heart of Christian teaching.

So how did the Christian churches turn Jesus’s few quiet words about sex into an ill-tempered centuries-long argument?

Read the rest here

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Southern Baptists and the Sin of Racism

“Racial reconciliation is not something that white people do for other people,” proclaimed Russell Moore in March. Moore, a white man from Mississippi, was opening a meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention in Nashville, Tennessee, with an eminently tweetable, infinitely complicated call to end racial division within the church.

As membership in the Southern Baptist church stagnates and baptisms decline, and as America’s younger generations are becoming more diverse and less religious, this kind of rhetoric could seem like a straightforward bid for survival. Millennials care deeply about race and racial justice, so the church has to care, too. Moore’s calls for reconciliation seemed heartfelt, though, as did those of many of the pastors and leaders who met at the Southern Baptists’ conference on race. And they are part of a consistent, longstanding effort. Since at least 1995, the church has been publicly repenting for its history of racial discrimination.Arguably, it has made progress; minority participation in Southern Baptist congregations has blossomed. Yet after two decades, the public-policy arm of the church is still focused almost exclusively on conservative social issues, rather than topics like poverty and mass incarceration, which have a significant impact on racial disparities in America. As the demographics of the church change, the Southern Baptists will have to reckon with these issues—or, perhaps, face future decades of division within their churches.

In 2013, Moore was elected the head of the Southern Baptists’ public-policy organization, called the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, or ERLC. He is full of pithy zingers; he’s a Christian leader suited for the social-media age. Moore has been a vocal advocate of immigration reform, sometimes out of keeping with the Republican Party; in July, he wrote that, “As Christians … our response ought to be, first, one of compassion for those penned up in detention centers on the border.” Many the ERLC’s policy priorities have remained the same, though, keeping a focus on conservative social issues, including opposition to pornography, gay marriage, and abortion; support for two-parent families; and a broad interpretation of “religious freedom,” defending vendors who refuse to provide services for gay weddings and businesses that won’t cover employees’ birth control under the Affordable Care Act.

But the most important change Moore has made since taking office has also been among the most subtle: shifting how Southern Baptists talk about race. For 25 years, Moore’s predecessor, Richard Land, was the face of the Southern Baptists in American politics. In the 90s, he led the denomination’s hard-right shift; years later, he became an appointee in the George W. Bush administration. Until 2012, he had his own talk-radio program, Richard Land Live! That show eventually proved his undoing: In a 2012 segment about the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, Land said that black political leaders were using Martin’s death to “gin up the black vote.” He also said that a black man is "statistically more likely to do you harm than a white man." His timing was particularly bad—he spoke just a few months before Fred Luter, a pastor from New Orleans, was slated to become the first-ever black president of the Southern Baptist Convention. Leaders in the church called for Land to be fired, arguing that his continued presence would undermine the meaningfulness of Luter’s election. Eight weeks later, following a review by the ERLC’s trustees, his radio show was cancelled, and the following month, he announced his retirement.

Read the rest here

Friday, April 10, 2015

White America's Silence on Police Brutality Is Consent

Late Tuesday, news broke that yet another unarmed American, a black man named Walter Scott, was killed by a white police officer. As with Tamir Rice, Eric Garner, and Rodney King nearly 25 years ago, the brutality was captured on video for the world to see. The New York Times put the damning evidence at the very top of its homepage and it quickly spread throughout social media networks provoking outrage, disgust, horror, grief. These reactions have come most vocally from black Americans. The silence from white activists, elected officials, public figures, and citizens has been deafening.

If you're white and have made it to this paragraph you might be thinking, or headed to the comments to write, "not all white people…" To be sure, there are white Americans active in efforts toward police reform. That population is, however, nowhere near the critical mass needed for change. Take for example New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. He made some unprecedented comments expressing "pain and frustration" after a grand jury failed to indict the NYPD officer who choked Eric Garner to death on film. He was quickly pressured to walk back that sentiment and, without the support he needed, did exactly that.

The bottom line: The majority of white Americans believe the nation's police are doing a good job despite that work often ending in the deaths of unarmed black people.

In every major speech on race that President Obama has delivered during his presidency, he has reassured Americans of our collective will to form a more perfect union. When his 2008 campaign was in danger of being derailed by his Chicago pastor, Obama remarked on the "vast majority" of Americans who want a more equitable country. After George Zimmerman was acquitted of murder charges for killing Trayvon Martin, Obama reminded us that, "Each successive generation seems to be making progress in changing attitudes when it comes to race." And, when a grand jury failed to indict a white officer for choking a black Staten Island man to death, the President instructed: " is incumbent upon all of us, as Americans, regardless of race, region, faith, that we recognize this is an American problem."

Black Americans are largely on board with making police brutality an issue of urgent national interest. We've always been desperate for change. White Americans, not so much.

Read the rest here

Thursday, April 9, 2015

How Religion Became a Destructive — and Redemptive — Force for ‘Black Lives Matter’

Religious leaders have proven to be powerful voices within a larger conversation about “Black Lives Matter,” a conversation that opened up once again this week after the death of a man in North Carolina.

On Saturday, April 4, Walter L. Scott, 50, was shot five times in the back and killed during a routine traffic stop by officer Michael Slager, 33, in West Ashley, N.C. According to a statement issued by Slager’s attorney on Monday, Scott grabbed Slager’s Taser, an electronic stun gun, and tried to use it against him. But, a widely-circulated video appeared to contradict the officer’s account, showing that he tried to plant evidence on Scott.

Slager was charged with murder after the video surfaced on Tuesday.

Shortly before news of the murder charge broke, I was on a Christian radio program responding to questions regarding An Open Letter to Franklin Graham that I co-wrote in response to incendiary remarks that Graham had posted on Facebook one month before. In his post, he told “Blacks, Whites, Latinos, and everybody else” to “Listen up.” Then, in one paragraph, the son of Billy Graham, who serves as president and CEO of Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, presumed to understand the issue better than everyone else. Graham said the reason so many police killings are happening is “simple.” It can be reduced to two key factors: 1) people need to learn to “OBEY” authority and 2) bad parenting.

Our Open Letter responded: “It is not that simple.”

Context clarifies the most offensive aspect of Graham’s first Facebook post: He “simplified” the problem of police killings by erasing the two most significant factors in the relationship between police and people of color — power and race, and the two are inextricably linked in our American context.

Simple is what you get when you proof-text an experience; lifting it out of its historical, social, psychological, cultural and economic contexts. Simple is what you get when you examine that event as if it is an isolated, two-dimensional specimen, rather than a multi-dimensional, recurring pattern. Simple is what you get when you take race and power out of the equation in America.

Read the rest here

Critical Pedagogy in the 21st Century

Critical Pedagogy in the 21st Century with Dr. Carmichael Crutchfield
Assistant Professor of Christian Education and Youth Ministry, Memphis Theological Seminary

April 14 - 15, 2015
Lindenwood Christian Church, Stauffer Hall
(Directly across Union Ave. from MTS)

Lecture I
Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at 11:10 a.m.
“Why In The World Does Critical Pedagogy Matter?”

Lecture II
Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at 7:00 p.m.
“Critical Pedagogy and The Politics of Disposability”

Lecture III
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 at 11:10 a.m.
“Critical Pedagogy: Advocacy and Justice”

All lectures are free and open to the public. MTS students will receive one (1) hour of theological colloquia credit per lecture, and alumni will receive 0.1 CEUs per lecture. MTS Will also live stream the event here

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

2015 African American Communication and Culture Division and Black Caucus Outstanding Research Awards

The African American Communication & Culture Division (AACCD) and the Black Caucus of NCA seeks nominations from division and caucus members for the 2015 annual research awards. Awards will be granted to the author(s) of theory and/or research on specific issues of concern to African Americans, Black ethnicity, or people of the African Diaspora representing a variety of communication contexts, processes, practices, theory development, or innovative research approaches. There will be one award for an outstanding book; one for an outstanding refereed article; one for outstanding book chapter; and one award for outstanding dissertation/thesis. Book nominations may include authored books, edited books, and textbooks. To be considered for an award, articles, books, and textbooks must meet the following minimum criteria:

Nominations will be accepted for works published between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015.

At least one author must be an NCA member.

Award recipients will be announced during the division business meeting at the NCA convention in Las Vegas, NV and award winners should agree to attend the conference to receive their award in person.

In order to nominate the work of others or yourself, send a statement of nomination and the accompanying publication. Electronic submissions are strongly encouraged and preferred.

When nominating a book or textbook, please send an electronic statement to the awards committee chair, and ask the book publisher to mail (4) copies of the book under separate cover to the awards committee chair (Dr. Kami J. Anderson) if an electronic version of the book is not available.

All nominations must be postmarked no later than Friday, August 2, 2015 in order to be considered for the award. Please note that nominations will not be considered without receipt of the accompanying publication or book packet material.

Call for 2015 Outstanding Scholarly Book Award Nominations

Deadline: August 2, 2015

The African American Communication and Culture Division and the Black Caucus seek nominations for its 2015 Outstanding Book Award to be given to the author(s) or editor(s) of an outstanding scholarly book. Books published between July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015 will be eligible for consideration. Self-nominations are strongly encouraged. All letters of nomination should clearly explicate how the book makes, or promises to make, a significant contribution to African American communication scholarship. In addition, the nomination letter should note specifically which single chapter is best representative of the nominated book. The nomination packet should include the nomination letter and the book. Electronic copies, including proof pages, will be accepted. If electronic copies are not available, please submit (4) hard copies of the proof pages to the address below. You can also ask the book publisher to mail (4) copies of the book under separate cover to the awards committee chair if an electronic version of the book is not available. Please send nominations to Kami J. Anderson at or to the mailing address: Kennesaw State University Honors College – Marietta 1100 Marietta Parkway, SE Norton Hall 304 Marietta, GA 30060

Call for 2015 Outstanding Scholarly Article Award Nominations

Deadline: August 2, 2015

The African American Communication and Culture Division and Black Caucus seek nominations for its 2015 Outstanding Article Award to be given to the author(s) of a peer-reviewed journal article. Articles published between July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015 are eligible for consideration. Self-nominations for the article award are strongly encouraged. All letters of nomination should clearly explicate how the article makes, or promises to make, a significant contribution to African American communication scholarship. Please send the nomination letter and electronic copy of the article (preferably as a PDF) to

Call for 2015 Outstanding Book Chapter Award Nominations

Deadline: August 2, 2015

The African American Communication and Culture Division and Black Caucus seek nominations for its 2015 Outstanding Book Chapter Award to be given to the author(s) of a chapter or essay appearing in an edited book. Articles or book chapters published between July 1, 2012-June 30, 2015 are eligible for consideration. Self-nominations for the article award are strongly encouraged. All letters of nomination should clearly explicate how the article or book chapter makes, or promises to make, a significant contribution to African American communication scholarship. Please send the nomination letter and electronic copy of the book chapter (preferably as a PDF) to

Call for 2015 Outstanding Dissertation Award Nominations

Deadline: August 2, 2015

The African American Communication and Culture Division and Black Caucus seek nominations for its 2015 Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award. Nominations should be made by the advisor of the dissertation or faculty member from the department in which the dissertation was completed. Eligible dissertations must have been defended between July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015. The nomination packet must include a cover letter written by the advisor or faculty nominator and the following: 1) a 500-word (maximum) abstract of the dissertation; 2) an article-length report of the dissertation (32 double-spaced pages maximum—includes title page, tables, figures, appendices, and references) OR a selection from the dissertation the applicant thinks is most representative of the study (32 double-spaced pages maximum). Please send the nomination letter and electronic copy of the nomination materials (preferably as a PDF) to

If an electronic version is not available, please send four (4) copies of the nomination packet to:

Dr. Kami J. Anderson, Chair-Awards Committee
Kennesaw State University
Honors College – Marietta
1100 Marietta Parkway, SE
Norton Hall 304
Marietta, GA 30060


The killing of an 18-year-old black teen by a white police officer on a street in Ferguson was the spark that ignited years of frustration, distrust and anger. Protests of the killing of Michael Brown, fueled by social media, continued for weeks. Days were filled with marches and meetings, nights devolved into confrontations with police. New issues emerged to be explored, debated. Fervor ebbed, then exploded anew when a second, and third police shooting occurred. Protests moved into Clayton, the Shaw neighborhood, St. Louis University, downtown. A night of arson and looting followed the announcement that a grand jury would not indict the police officer. Protests spread across the nation. Here, from the epicenter, is the story of Ferguson.

Read and see the rest here from the St. Louis Dispatch 

Ferguson Forward: A Timeline

It’s been 6 months since the killing of Mike Brown, an unarmed St. Louis teen, who was shot dead by Officer Darren Wilson, while en route to his grandmother’s house. Brown’s body was left to cook on the summer asphalt for four-and-a-half-hours as hundreds of family, friends, and community members gathered around. In response to his mother Leslie McSpadden’s anguish, an officer told her to “get it together.” That comment set the tone for how Brown’s community would be treated during subsequent days, weeks, and months when they gathered in the streets to mourn and to protest. Police brought out dogs, machine guns, and tanks to residential neighborhoods where they tear gassed and threatened both protesters and media with deadly force.

After seeing George Zimmerman get off for the killing of Trayvon Martin, after watching video of John Crawford being gunned down by police in a Walmart for carrying an unloaded firearm, which was sold by the store, after watching Eric Garner whimper “I Can’t Breathe” during his final moments as an NYPD officer choked him to death, after the countless deaths of so many other Black men and women, Brown’s death awakened a new generation of activism that continues to shape contemporary dialogue about targeted state-sanctioned violence against people of color, immigrants, women, and LGBTQ people.

What follows is a timeline of key local and national events that have shaped what many have proclaimed to be a rebirth of civil rights activism, commonly referred to as "Ferguson," the epicenter of the Black Lives Matter movement:

Read the rest here

Gardner C. Taylor, Dean of Black Preachers, Dies at 96

The Rev. Gardner C. Taylor, widely considered the dean of the nation’s black preachers and “the poet laureate of American Protestantism,” died Sunday (April 5) after a ministerial career that spanned more than six decades. He was 96.

The Rev. Carroll Baltimore, past president of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, confirmed that Taylor died on Easter Sunday.

“Dr. Taylor was a theological giant who will be greatly missed,” he said of the minister who received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2000.

PNBC President Rev. James C. Perkins said Taylor “transformed America and the world for the better. How appropriate it is that God called Dr. Taylor home on Resurrection Sunday. In both life and death Dr. Taylor gave a clarion call to the transformative power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Concord Baptist Church of Christ, the imposing, block-long, brick church Taylor pastored for 42 years, became a beacon of hope and vitality for many African-Americans in Brooklyn, N.Y., and a model for the nation. When the church was destroyed by fire in 1952, Taylor defied naysayers by not only rebuilding the edifice, but also doubling its size.

Concord, one of New York City’s largest churches, operated its own elementary school, nursing home, credit union and million-dollar endowment used to invest in the community. But for more than four decades, it was Taylor who made Concord’s pulpit “the most prestigious in black Christendom,” proclaimed author and scholar Michael Eric Dyson.

Dyson described Taylor’s preaching style as a blend of technical aspects, brilliant metaphors and an “uncanny sense of rhythmic timing put to dramatic but not crassly theatrical effect.”

Read the rest here

If You See Something: The Prophetic Legacy of #MLK

Below is the keynote address given by R3 contributor Earle Fisher at the King Day celebration held on April 4 at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee. 

I would like to thank the National Civil Rights Museum for the opportunity to speak at such an unforgettable location on such an unforgettable occasion. I would further like to salute the museum for the strides it has made over the years to articulate the story of the seemingly endless struggle for justice and truth in a world that seems to be overwhelmed by injustice and inaccuracy. The recent renovations continue to bear witness to the complexities of righteous representation of a story wrought with hope and despair; joy and pain; triumph and tragedy. The museum is part of the reason I remain hopeful and prayerful that we are advancing into the midst of a time whereby people of good will can push past shallow segmentation and sound bites and embrace the essence and challenge of who we have been and who we are becoming as a people, a nation and a world.

I think the story that is told in this place (not flawless but yet fundamental) is so vital to the faithful formation of future leaders that no one should be able to graduate from an institution of higher education in this city without first taking a tour of the National Civil Rights Museum. I think it should be written into the curriculum at all of our local colleges and universities. As a graduate and employee of a few of the institutions of higher education in the city of Memphis, I have been gifted with a unique perspective that I presume can be helpful in putting this contemporary climate into a more comprehensible context.

During my last semester at Memphis Theological Seminary in 2008, I took a life changing class entitled, “The Rhetoric of Dr. King.” Like many I had heard of and about Dr. King such that I presumed I knew him; as if he was an estranged ancestor who my family wanted to talk about each year at the family reunion. I thought I knew Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., because the mainstream stations played the “I Have A Dream” rift each year in January and February. The mainstream would conveniently leave out the portion of the speech where Dr. King accused the country of “defaulting on a promissory note [of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness] insofar as her citizens of color are concerned.”

But during my sojourn through that course, I was honored to encounter an individual who endured a great deal of criticism, misunderstanding, fear, hatred and other elements that many of us here have encountered and persevered through in order to be in this place and time we stand. To my surprise and delight, I was re-introduced to a figure that had been romanticized and projected as a lot more passive, patient and priestly than he really was. The Dr. King I encountered in that class in 2008 was not simply a dreamer...he was an activist, civic leader, friend, pastor, scholar, father, husband and most of all a prophet.

As an African-American Preacher/Pastor in the Christian Religious tradition, I understand that the terms prophet, prophetic and prophecy are rather ambiguous and misunderstood by the masses. Most of us have encountered a compartmentalized and illegitimate form of prophecy and prophet. We most often associate the term prophet with one who sees into the future and under some mystical divine unction can tell people what will happen before it happens. But this notion over-mystifies and dehumanizes the reality of what a prophet is. It limits Dr. King to only having a dream and a superior approval rating in American culture during the early half of the 1960’s and regrets to put into perspective some of King’s core challenges, critiques and shortcomings. King was not perfect but he will always be prophetic. But he is more akin to the prophetic definition given by theologian Walter Brueggemann who in his writing The Prophetic Imagination, argues that “the task [and role] of the prophet is to criticize the dominant consciousness while energizing communities to move towards an alternative vision of existing.” This is how I have come to see the late great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Dr. King was not just a nice, Negro-preacher turned into professional, peace-making orator. Dr. King criticized the dominant consciousness of his day. King spoke out against unjust wars, rallied against racism, condemned classism and other forms of injustice. As a result, this prophet was vilified, had his approval-rating drop drastically, even among African-Americans and as most of us know well, was assassinated on the mountaintop of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. King was a courageous, intellectually inclined, profound prophet who transcended the systematic lethargy of his time and produced thoughts and practices that most would agree were divinely inspired. 

Therefore, those of us who seek to stand in a similar posture as the prophet King; those of us who seek to evoke the ethos and ethics of such a forerunner for true democracy, liberty and justice for all would serve ourselves well to use the tools we have been given – tools of foresight and insight; courage, creativity and compassion – to not only bring to fruition the hopes, dreams and aspirations of who PBS called “Citizen King” but moreover, to construct a contemporary scene, a vision of equity and inclusion that could guide and direct us beyond that insensitivities and shortcomings of our yesterdays and our shortsightedness about tomorrow.

King talked about what he felt, what he deeply believed and what he saw. And I believe that if we can muster up the honesty, integrity and tenacity that is needed is such a tense, oppressive and exploitative climate, we too can make a positive impact on our communities and our world like Dr. King did.

A few years ago I was at Memphis International Airport going through the security checkpoints when I saw a sign with words that will forever be etched in the archives of my mind. The terror threat level was high and the TSA deemed it necessary to strategically post signs that said, “IF YOU SEE SOMETHING… SAY SOMETHING!” The sentiment of the sign was one of exigency and attentiveness – echoing what Dr. King called “The fierce urgency of now.” But it was not a “sightseeing” spectacle. It was also a call to action, a call to involvement; a call to get one’s hands dirty (if you will). The TSA had concluded that it was not only one group’s job to fight against terror and danger – it was everyone’s job individually and collectively.

What was true that day is still true on this day. Issues of social justice still require our sight, our speech and our collective strength. But there are too many times when people have neglected to look. Or if they did look they neglected to speak. Or if they spoke it was lip service but not life service. For far too long we’ve been blind, silent and disjointed. As a result we’ve found ourselves behind the eight-ball of injustice which has pigeon-held us in both the past and the present.

But no longer is this type of passivity acceptable. I trust that’s why we’re gathered her today – that’s why I’m here today. I didn’t simply come to honor the life, legacy and love of our invaluable American hero Dr. King. I came to carry his mantle. I came to let somebody know what I see. Some of it is disturbing. I see greed on Wall Street that exploits people on Main Street. I see frivolous political posturing on Capitol Hill in the form of filibusters and partisanship. I see negligence and insensitivity in City Hall that continues to demonize and abuse the poor and working class in the name of urbanization and social progress. I see a sophisticated racism, classism, sexism, homophobia and narcissism that masquerades around under the guise of liberty and patriotism. I even seen ministerial leaders who are so insensitive they will raise funds for a jet but won’t lift finger for justice. Some of what I see disturbs me. I see greed, fear, poverty, pain and injustice.

But that’s not all I see. Just like Dr. King, I am a man of faith so, “Mine eyes have seen the glory of coming of the LORD.” I not only see disturbance but I also see some deliverance. I not only see greed but I also see grace. I see streams in the desert. I see crooked places being made straight. I see civil rights soldiers marching in Selma – lets march with them. I see the faith of community activists in Ferguson – lets fight alongside them. I see the boldness of the #BlackLivesMatter movement – let’s build with them. I see a movement manifesting itself in Memphis. I see some hope, courage, love and potential. That’s why we’re here... because together we can see something, say something and do something!!! I SEE SOMETHING… SO I STOPPED BY HERE TODAY TO SAY SOMETHING… AND I ALSO CAME TO DO SOMETHING. I HOPE ALL OF US WILL ALSO DO THE SAME.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

‘Christian America': Corporate Invention or Founding Fathers’ Vision?

Recent surveys have indicated that many, if not most, Americans believe the founding fathers wanted this nation to be officially Christian. But a new book by Princeton historian Kevin Kruse slices and dices this notion with razor-sharp facts and anecdotes. In “One Nation Under God: How Corporate America Invented Christian America,” he shows how corporations such as General Motors and Hilton Hotels partnered with clergymen and politicians to conflate patriotism and pietism. Here he tells how our nation’s Ten Commandments monuments were originally movie marketing props and how evangelist Billy Graham participated in America’s shifting mindset.

RNS: You argue that “corporate America invented Christian America”? Explain.

KK: By “Christian America,” I don’t mean the idea that this is a country in which Christians and Christianity have played a fundamentally important role. I’m talking about the belief that the state itself, politically speaking, is officially and formally a “Christian nation.” Most of the markers that Americans invoke when they argue that we are one – the words “under God” in the pledge, the national motto of “In God We Trust,” the National Prayer Breakfast, the National Day of Prayer, etc. – are creations of the modern era and, more specifically, creations of corporate America.

RNS: Creations of corporate America?

KK: Starting in the 1930s, major corporations and business lobbies marketed a new language of “freedom under God” to discredit what they denounced as the “slavery of the welfare state.” As their campaign swept the nation in the 1940s and 1950s, many Americans came to think of their country as officially “one nation under God.”

RNS: You said “America as a Christian nation” is a modern invention, but others counter that it traces back to our founding fathers. What say you?

KK: The founding fathers were religiously diverse, but on this issue they were nearly unanimous in insisting that the United States of America was not a Christian nation. The Declaration invokes the Creator, of course, but the Constitution – the basis of our government – pointedly does not. Other than dating the document “in the year of our Lord,” the only mentions of religion in the Constitution and Bill of Rights are ones that keep the state at arm’s length from the church. Even more directly, the 1797 Treaty of Tripoli – begun by Washington, signed by Adams, and passed unanimously by a Senate half-filled with signers of the Constitution – states quite clearly that “the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion.”

RNS: You say that some of this notion was a response to Roosevelt’s New Deal. How so?

KK: Roosevelt himself deserves some of the credit, as he regularly invoked religion in his speeches for the New Deal. His first inaugural address was so laden with Scripture that the National Bible Press put out a chart linking his text to the “Corresponding Biblical Quotations.” The business interests he denounced as “the moneychangers” decided to beat him at his own game, using religious rhetoric to repackage their worldly agenda in heavenly terms. As both sides of the debate blended religion and politics, ideas of piety and patriotism became closely intertwined for all.

RNS: How did Billy Graham partner with American corporates to propel this idea forward?

Read the rest here

Ferguson Faces Its Future

Our national conversations and activist actions around race and racial injustice tend to flourish when centered around one locality. The best recent example is Ferguson, the St. Louis suburb that quite literally ignited last summer after unarmed teen Michael Brown was gunned down by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. That was followed by one of the grossest displays of militarized police violence the country has witnessed since 1965 on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

That’s a big reason why President Obama couldn’t go to Selma last month and not say the word “Ferguson.”

There was also the matter of inconvenient, yet symbolic timing: Days before the March 7 commemoration of the violently interrupted voting-rights march known as “Bloody Sunday,” the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) released a mortifying 102-page report about Ferguson, detailing excessive force by police officers, financial bleeding of citizens through petty arrests and ticketing, and unchecked racial bias that metastasized throughout the police and courts.

Noting that he’d been asked in the wake of the DOJ report whether anything had changed with regards to race in this country, Obama chose to respond instead to a straw man. “I rejected the notion that nothing’s changed,” he said in his Selma speech. “What happened in Ferguson may not be unique, but it’s no longer endemic. It’s no longer sanctioned by law or by custom. And before the Civil Rights Movement, it most surely was.”

In the midst of otherwise brilliant oratory befitting the moment, this was a very strange thing to say. The ’60s were not some demarcation line for institutionalized and legalized racism, as Obama knows. And the killing of Michael Brown was indeed sanctioned by both law and custom, as the government’s report makes plain.

Something that can demonstrably change the city, however, will take place this coming Tuesday, April 7: Ferguson will vote in its first local election since Brown was killed.

Read the rest here

A Hispanic Rethinking of the Cross

Crosses are the electric chairs of the past, the means by which the civil authorities punished transgressors of the law. If ancient Rome had the means of electrocution as oppose to crucifixion; I wonder if today’s Christians would be walking around wearing miniature golden electric chairs around their necks. Because we resignified the cross to point toward a religious tradition as opposed to a means of state-sponsored capital punishment, we lose the original purpose of the cross, to kill enemies of the state. All executions eliminate those who do not “fit” how those in power defined civilized society. And while today’s U.S. capital punishment system is usually geared toward those who have engaged in acts where someone lost their life (i.e. murder); we cannot ignore the fact that the poor and those who are of color disproportionately are imprisoned and executed.

The Jesus of the Gospel narratives, and the Jesús sitting today on death row share a similar circumstance; both are executed under the law that, in spite of their obvious flaws, contradictions, and biases, is presented as fair. But there is a reason we do not talk about a “court of justice,” but instead use the term, “court of law;” we as a society follow laws not seek justice. And because laws have historically and consistently been written to the determent of Hispanics (and other marginalized communities), we are left wondering if the purpose of the cross, like the purpose of all executions, is to reinforce control over darker bodies to demonstrate what awaits those on the margins of power and privilege who dare to rebel against the current social structures. The punishments metered out by courts of laws, laws designed to the determent of the disenfranchised, are more for the benefit of others from disadvantaged communities to serve as warning that if they too step out of place, then they can expect similar punishment (revenge).

Read the rest here

Thursday, April 2, 2015

#FergusonFiasco, Part 3: After the DOJ Report: A Reader

On March 4, 2015, the Department of Justice issued two reports that focused on the events that centered on the killing of Michael Brown by then Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson. The first one determined the evidence did not support that Wilson violated federal law in killing Michael Brown. The second one, "revealed a pattern or practice of unlawful conduct within the Ferguson Police Department" that violated the "First, Fourth, and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution, and federal statutory law." Here at R3, we started the first Reader on the Ferguson Fiasco by examining the killing of Michael Brown. The second Reader focused on material in response to the Grand Jury's decision not to indict. The third Reader focuses on material in response to the DOJ's reports. Read our collection of Readers here.

1. A City Where Policing, Discrimination and Raising Revenue Went Hand in Hand
2. Conservatives Who Hate Big Government Are, Surprisingly, Not Up In Arms About Ferguson
3. Ferguson's Conspiracy Against Black Citizens
4. Attorney General Holder Eric Holder on Ferguson, Missouri Investigation
5. It’s Not Just Ferguson
6. The Ferguson emails show how little race and racism have changed in the Obama era
7. White House Reporters Focusing On The Wrong Email Scandal

8. Ferguson’s True Criminals
9. Darren Wilson Is Cleared of Rights Violations in Ferguson Shooting
10. The Gangsters of Ferguson
11. DOJ report on Ferguson reads like the description of a totalitarian police state
12. Ferguson judge behind aggressive fines policy owes $170,000 in unpaid taxes
13. Ferguson police one of many law enforcement agencies facing federal reforms
14. Can the Ferguson Police Department Be Fixed?
15. Stunning Ferguson report revelations: Why a complete overhaul is needed, now
16. How to Rebuild the Ferguson Police Department
17. The Ferguson Nightmare
18. The Ferguson e-mails show how little race and racism have changed in the Obama era
19. Introducing the Justice Issue
20. Blame Sharpton For Ferguson If You Wish--But Don't Pretend Rights Of Blacks Were Not Shredded By Cops
21. The Road from Selma to Ferguson
22. How Racism Became Policy in Ferguson
23. The Injustice the DOJ Uncovered in Ferguson Wasn’t Racism
24. Comparing Selma To Ferguson: 'Mike Brown Is Our Jimmie Lee Jackson'
25. Ferguson Became Symbol, but Bias Knows No Border
26. Racism in Ferguson PD is policing done right, and that’s why it is so wrong
27. Walking in Ferguson: If you're black, it's often against the law
28. Colin Powell ‘shocked but not that surprised’ by Ferguson report
29. The Ferguson Report Was Damning, But It's Not Just A Ferguson Problem
30. 'Madison, Wisconsin, Is Not Ferguson, Missouri'
31. From Selma to Ferguson: How Far? Not Far Enough
32. Grading Obama On Race, After Ferguson And Selma Anniversary
33. Selma and Ferguson
34. Ferguson Is America and the Time to Act Is Now
35. Progress After Ferguson? Good Ideas Need Good Implementation
36. Racial Tension Draws Parallels, But Madison Is No Ferguson
37. From Ferguson to Charleston: The race for racial justice
38. America’s “black body” reality: How Selma, “Scandal” & Ferguson reveal an ugly truth
39. Ferguson’s Police Chief Resigned, Now Fire the Rest of the Cops
40. America's inability to respect the full humanity of black life
41. How municipalities in St. Louis County, Mo., profit from poverty
42. Everything You Need To Know About What's Happened In Ferguson
43. On the Front Lines in Ferguson
44. What next for Black Lives Matter in Ferguson after city's police shooting?
45. Race, outrage and white male excuses: It’s much worse than just one frat boy
46. Nine solutions to fix Ferguson
47. West Florissant today: Ferguson streetscape redrawn by tension and grief
48. Not just bird chirping: Black Lives Matter chants will resound this spring
57. Who's being attacked in Ferguson?
58. Race relations take big step backward in Ferguson
59. What Are The Ferguson Shootings Really About?
60. ‘Hands up, don’t shoot’ was built on a lie
61. The Ferguson DOJ report looks a lot like other excessive police force reports
62. Stop poisoning the race debate: How “respectability politics” rears its ugly head — again
63. Why Black Lives Matter activists aren't winning over whites
64. John Oliver slams for-profit policing in Ferguson and across the country
65. Reconsidering My August Post on Ferguson and ‘Conflicting Accounts’
66. When Ferguson hits primetime: How shows like 'Scandal' handle race
67. If Ferguson Stays Ferguson, Blacks Have No One to Blame But Themselves
68. Next Steps on the Ferguson Front
69. The Black Lives Matter Movement Doesn’t Need Perfect Symbols
70. Fleece Force: How Police And Courts Around Ferguson Bully Residents And Collect Millions
71. Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Municipal Violations (HBO)
73. The rise of Black Lives Matter Minneapolis
74. Missouri Police Will Restrict Tear Gas After Ferguson Lawsuit
75. Teaching About Policing and Race in America
76. Ferguson mayor says it's not fair Justice Department report focused on race
77. New Nonprofit, Incubate Ferguson, Aims to Empower the City’s Residents