Renowned ballerina Misty Copeland sends an inspiring message to girls of Colorado

Posted in Articles, Arts, Interviews, Media Archive, United States, Videos on 2016-09-25 16:47Z by Steven

Renowned ballerina Misty Copeland sends an inspiring message to girls of Colorado

The Denver Post
Denver, Colorado

Molly Hughes

She overcame difficult childhood to become first African-American female principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre

American dancer Misty Copeland knows about overcoming the odds and pushing through adversity to achieve a dream.

As the first African American female to be appointed as Principal Dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre, Copeland knows more than a little bit about breaking out of the life she was given, to create the life she wanted. With that story to tell, it’s no surprise the 34-year-old was invited to Denver as a special guest of the Colorado Women’s Foundation annual luncheon, an event sponsored by the Denver Post Community Foundation.

The foundation’s goal is to create systemic change for women and girls in Colorado, empowering them to overcome stereotypes, tackle math, science and technology in school, achieve financial independence and reach their full potential.

Copeland’s story seems to align with that message. Her seemingly fairy tale adult life in the spotlight bears little to no resemblance to her humble beginnings…

Hughes: Is there any part of you that is bothered by the fact that the title is first African-American principal dancer in the ballet company?

Copeland: No. I think that this is something that I’ve had to accept and own, and I’m so OK with that. You know, this is a huge deal and for people to kind of take away that title just because I’ve reached this point — like it doesn’t make any sense. It is a big deal, and it doesn’t erase the history of the lack of diversity in classical ballet just because me as an individual — one person — has reached this point. So whenever people say, “You know, you’re here. Like, why do you have to talk about race? Why is every article about you being African-American. It has to be said. That message has to continue and I hope it does. When I’m retired in that it will continue to spark change…

Read the entire interview here.

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Emotional Obama Tearfully Thanks Trump for Granting Him Citizenship

Posted in Articles, Barack Obama, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States, Videos on 2016-09-18 22:06Z by Steven

Emotional Obama Tearfully Thanks Trump for Granting Him Citizenship

Borowitz Report
The New Yorker

Andy Borowitz

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Calling this “the greatest day of my life,” a visibly moved Barack Obama held a news conference on Friday to thank Donald Trump for granting him U.S. citizenship.

“The issue of whether or not I was a U.S. citizen has been a dark cloud over my existence for as long as I can remember,” a tearful Obama told the press corps. “Only one man had the courage, wisdom, and doggedness to make that cloud go away: Donald J. Trump.”…

Read the entire article (with tongue-in-cheek) here.

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Scotland’s national poet writes for those who’ve been asked ‘where are you from?’

Posted in Articles, Interviews, Media Archive, United Kingdom, Videos on 2016-09-10 21:46Z by Steven

Scotland’s national poet writes for those who’ve been asked ‘where are you from?’

PBS NewsHour

Jackie Kay is Scotland’s first black national poet. Adopted as a child, much of her poetry and prose speaks to her own experience of not feeling entirely welcome in her own country. “I wrote the poems that I wanted to read and I wrote about the experiences that I wanted to find,” she says. Jeffrey Brown reports.

JUDY WOODRUFF: Now a Scottish literary talent whose work on identity and belonging, among other themes, has helped propel her to a unique role and a popular writer there.

Jeffrey Brown has our profile.

JACKIE KAY, Scottish Poet & Novelist: “And this is my country, says the fisherwoman from Jura. Mine, too, says the child from Canna and Iona. Mine, too, says the Brain family. And mine, says the man from the Polish deli.”

JEFFREY BROWN: Jackie Kay wrote her poem “Threshold” for the Scottish Parliament and a special guest, Queen Elizabeth.

JACKIE KAY: Let’s blether some more about doors, revolving doors and sliding doors.

JEFFREY BROWN: In the wake to of the recent Brexit vote to leave the European Union, it was a plea to keep doors and the country open to the outside world. As Scotland’s new national poet, Kay made it personal.

JACKIE KAY: Scotland’s changing faces — look at me!

I like the idea of trying to change the face of Scotland. But, traditionally, when somebody thinks of somebody Scottish, they see a white man with red hair in a kilt and a — and they don’t see me.

JEFFREY BROWN: Jackie is the adopted daughter of John and Helen Kay. Her birth mother Scottish. Her father was then a Nigerian student studying in Scotland.

JACKIE KAY: I was an illegitimate child. And being picked to be a national poet is probably a pretty legitimate thing.


JEFFREY BROWN: I will say…

Watch the interview here.

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Passing in Boston: The Story of the Healy Family

Posted in History, Media Archive, Passing, Religion, United States, Videos on 2016-09-01 01:15Z by Steven

Passing in Boston: The Story of the Healy Family


Boston College history professor, James O’Toole discusses his newest book Passing for White: Race, Religion, and the Healy Family, 1820-1920, which documents the extraordinary life of the Healy brothers of Boston.

In the mid-1800’s, the Healy brothers of Boston, James, Patrick, and Sherwood, looked like the picture of Catholic success. James was bishop of Portland, Maine; Patrick, president of Georgetown University; and Sherwood, chief supervisor of the building of the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. The Healy’s were not typical members of the Boston Catholic elite, but the children of a multiracial slave couple from Georgia.

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Meet American Olympian Anthony Ervin: The Oldest-Ever Individual Olympic Swimming Gold Medalist

Posted in Articles, Biography, Interviews, Media Archive, United States, Videos on 2016-08-28 02:25Z by Steven

Meet American Olympian Anthony Ervin: The Oldest-Ever Individual Olympic Swimming Gold Medalist

Democracy Now!

Amy Goodman, Host and Executive Producer

While Michael Phelps dominated the Olympic headlines over the weekend by scoring a historic 23rd gold medal, another American male swimmer has also made history in Rio. Thirty-five-year-old Anthony Ervin became the oldest-ever individual Olympic swimming gold medalist when he won two gold medals for the men’s 50-meter freestyle and the men’s four-by-100-meter freestyle relay. For more, we go to Rio to speak with Ervin, who is also the author of the recent book titled “Chasing Water: Elegy of an Olympian.”

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!,, The War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman. We’re in Rio de Janeiro—at least that’s where our guests are. We’re joined by Jesse Washington of The Undefeated, as well as Anthony Ervin, U.S. swimming champion and four-time Olympic medalist. At 35 years old, he’s the oldest-ever individual Olympic swimming gold medalist. Just wrote the book Chasing Water: Elegy of an Olympian.

Anthony, welcome to Democracy Now! Congratulations on your remarkable victory. Talk about how you feel right now and what it means to you.

ANTHONY ERVIN: Thank you for having me. I feel good. Got some lights burning right into me, and I’m staring into a vacuum to talk back to you.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, talk about how you felt when you realized—when did you realize you had won, with all those toddlers in the pool, you at 35?…

AMY GOODMAN: Anthony, you write in your beautiful book, Chasing Water: Elegy of an Olympian, about what it was like after you won in 2000—you won that gold medal—about being promoted as an African-American trailblazer, when you felt, at that point, as a teen, you hadn’t really grown up with that black identity. Can you talk about your life in that way, who your parents are?

ANTHONY ERVIN: Sure. You know, my mom, she came from New York City. She’s a city gal. You know, she even keeps her own—her personal history is a mystery, even to me and the rest of us kids. And my dad came from West Virginia. You know, his father was a coal miner. And, you know, he was—I mean, the question of blackness, you know, is a question of authenticity. And to be viewed in that way—and swimming is—it’s a very visual sport. It’s a body. You know, literally, you’re a body in the water, wearing close to nothing, so that body is on display. And if we’re talking about blackness, blackness is a color. You know, it’s—in the eyes of many, it’s a skin tone. You know, but then, if you dig into the history of it, there’s the idea of hypodescent. You know, one drop of blood makes you black. So, it’s all very complicated, and I didn’t know about any of this. I wasn’t educated on the history of this. Or if I was, I was snoozing through it in classrooms. So, I didn’t know how to necessarily answer to it. And I had trouble tackling, trying to argue that, you know, I authentically am this, if others say I’m not, or people trying to posit some kind of identity on me which I did not drape on myself. I mean, it’s a question of being able to pursue my personal freedom and needing to shuck all forms of identity in order to do that.

AMY GOODMAN: Your father is African-American, Native American?…

Read the transcript here.

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MTV Decoded Answers The Question ‘Are Hispanic People White?’

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States, Videos on 2016-08-26 00:00Z by Steven

MTV Decoded Answers The Question ‘Are Hispanic People White?’

Latino Voices
The Huffington Post

Carolina Moreno, Editor

It’s complicated.

When it comes to matters of race and ethnicity, things can get very complicated. Thankfully, Franchesa Ramsey is always ready to decode everything.

In a new episode of MTV News, the host of “Decoded” tackled the question “Are Hispanics white?” The answer is, unsurprisingly, complex.

As an ethnicity, there’s a limitless amount of racial identities that can live within the Latino community. That means Latinos can be asian, black, mixed race and, yes, even white.

“If you ever hear anyone say, ‘This is America and 77 percent of it is white.’ Whether they know it or not, they’re including a very large number of people who identify as Hispanic or Latino,” Ramsay says in the video as she breaks down “Hispanic” isn’t a racial category in the census.

Ramsey also enlisted the help of YouTube vlogger Kat Lazo to help further break down the difference between Hispanic and Latino (or the gender neutral term Latinx), plus explain the differences between race and ethnicity…

Read the entire article here.

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Michaela Angela Davis Strips Down For The “What’s Underneath Project,” Talks Racism, Insecurities

Posted in Arts, Autobiography, Interviews, Media Archive, United States, Videos, Women on 2016-08-22 23:28Z by Steven

Michaela Angela Davis Strips Down For The “What’s Underneath Project,” Talks Racism, Insecurities

Madame Noire

Brande Victorian, Managing Editor

Michaela Angela Davis has long been everything and then some to us, and our opinion of the writer, culture critique, and activist has only skyrocketed after watching her strip down for StyleLikeU’s highly regarded “What’s Underneath Project.”…

…And we’re thankful for that. Here are the highlights from Davis’ interview:

On assumptions people make about her because of how she looks

“The first, sort of obvious assumption is that I’m mixed race– like one parent is white, one parent is Black — and it’s not so. Both of my parents are light-skinned and Black. Both of my parents are products of what I call the great horror story of America and the great love story of America. In order to survive, often families would marry other light-skinned Blacks to stay alive…

Read the entire article here.

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A Letter From Young Asian-Americans To Their Families About Black Lives Matter

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Audio, Media Archive, United States, Videos on 2016-07-28 02:12Z by Steven

A Letter From Young Asian-Americans To Their Families About Black Lives Matter

Code Switch: Race and Identity, Remixed
National Public Radio

Shereen Marisol Meraji, Reporter

Kat Chow, Digital Journalist

In the Facebook Live video streamed earlier this month by Diamond Reynolds after her fiance, Philando Castile, was fatally shot by a police officer during a traffic stop in a Minnesota suburb, Reynolds identified the man who shot Castile as “Chinese” as she narrated the scene.

It was later understood that Castile was shot by Jeronimo Yanez, who is Latino. In the meantime, Reynolds’ testimony gave Christina Xu, a 28-year-old Chinese-American ethnographer who lives in New York City, flashbacks to earlier this year, when many Asian-Americans around the country protested the prosecution and conviction of Peter Liang, the Chinese-American cop who shot and killed Akai Gurley in a dark stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project in 2014…

The protesters said Liang was being treated as a scapegoat at a time of heightened focus on police shootings of unarmed black people, pointing out that white law enforcement officials involved in several high-profile cases in recent years have not faced similar consequences.

For Xu, and other younger Asian-Americans who have shown support for the Black Lives Matter movement and anti-police brutality causes, this was disturbing. “To me, clearly justice is about getting justice for these black families,” Xu says. “Not about making sure that Asian people have the same privilege as white people.”…

Listen to the podcast here. Read the article here. Read the transcript here.

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The Complexities of Skin Color

Posted in Interviews, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Social Science, United States, Videos on 2016-07-20 19:25Z by Steven

The Complexities of Skin Color

Black Issues Forum
Raleigh, North Carolina
Running Time: 00:26:46

Deborah Holt Noel, Host

Inspired by the casting of Latina actress Zoe Saldana to play Nina Simone, the performer and activist known for her pride in her dark skin, Deborah chats with professor Dr. Yaba Blay, filmmaker Eric Barstow, and undergraduate student Ayana Thompson to delve into why so many people still knowingly and unknowingly participate in colorism – the assertion that light is better.

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Is there a racial ‘care gap’ in medical treatment?

Posted in Articles, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Interviews, Media Archive, Social Science, United States, Videos on 2016-07-12 23:31Z by Steven

Is there a racial ‘care gap’ in medical treatment?

PBS News Hour

A new survey has found implicit biases in medical students that may explain why black patients are sometimes undertreated for pain, with some students believing that black people feel less pain and have thicker skin than white people. For more on the perplexing discovery, Gwen Ifill talks to Dr. David Satin of the University of Minnesota and Dorothy Roberts of the University of Pennsylvania.

GWEN IFILL: A new study finds African-American patients are often treated differently when it comes to medicine and care. The survey of more than 500 people, 400 of them medical students, found implicit bias exists that may help explain why black people are sometimes undertreated for pain.

Among its findings: Medical students believed that African-Americans felt less pain than white patients, and even thought their skin was thicker.

For more on this perplexing discovery, we turn to Dr. David Satin of the University of Minnesota Medical Center, and Dorothy Roberts of the university of Pennsylvania.

Thank you both for joining us.

Dr. Satin, try to describe this disparity for me. Why does this exist? And is it new?

DR. DAVID SATIN, University of Minnesota Medical Center: So, Gwen, we have known that this has been an issue for at least a couple decades.

And every now and then, a study comes out that underscores the need for the field of medicine, and in particular medical education, to do some work and get it right.

So, this is a problem, and it’s been a problem, and hopefully this study will spur on more activity.

GWEN IFILL: Dorothy Roberts, is this a medical problem or a sociological problem?

DOROTHY ROBERTS, University of Pennsylvania: It’s both.

I think what’s really important and fascinating about the study is that it, for the first time, links what we have long known as undertreatment of pain for black patients with doctors, or at least medical students’ false beliefs about biological differences based on race.

And those beliefs, as the study has shown, are widely held by laypeople as well. They’re deeply embedded, longstanding myths about racial difference, especially biological differences between races, which goes back to the very concept that race is a biological difference that is widespread in U.S. society. So it’s sociological, as well as medical…

Read the entire transcript here. Watch the interview here.

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