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Racial Equality Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

BET founder calls for $14 trillion of reparations for slavery

By Reparations, Video/Audio

Robert Johnson, founder of RLJ Companies and BET, tells CNBC’s “Squawk Box” America must make reparations for slavery in order to address racial inequality. Robert Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television, told CNBC on Monday the U.S. government should provide $14 trillion of reparations for slavery to help reduce racial inequality. The wealth divide and police brutality against blacks are at the heart of protests that have erupted across the…

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Fast food workers and union members carry signs as they stage a protest outside of a McDonald's restaurant in Oakland, Calif., on Feb. 12, 2018, the 50th anniversary of the historic Memphis Sanitation Strike that was led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

What Happened to Martin Luther King Jr.’s Dream of Economic Justice?

By Commentaries/Opinions

Economic justice was always central to Martin Luther King Jr.’s agenda. But society has moved backward on that issue since his death. By Michael K. Honey, Time — When Memphis sanitation workers went on strike in 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. knew they had a lesson to teach America. “You are reminding the nation,” he told attendees at a March 1968 rally there, “that it is a crime for people to live…

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Booker T Washington

Bookerism and the Black Elite

By Editors' Choice

Managing race relations from above. By Adolph Reed Jr., The New Republic — On September 18, 1895, Booker T. Washington gave his famous address to the Atlanta Cotton States and International Exposition. Washington declared before this regional business gathering his acquiescence in the name of the black Southern population to the new regime of almost total black disfranchisement and the abrogation of civil rights within a social, political, and economic…

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William Monroe Trotter.

The Legacy of a Radical Black Newspaperman

By Editors' Choice

William Monroe Trotter rejected the view that racial equality could come in stages. By Casey Cep, The New Yorker — The mustache had to go. A classic nineteenth-century handlebar, it was far too recognizable, so William Monroe Trotter shaved it off. In addition to the disguise, he arranged to take a cooking class in his boarding house, evincing a sudden interest that would have surprised his wife, mother, and two…

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Members of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights October 31, 2012.

International Human Rights Bodies Provide a Case for Reparations

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Justin Hansford, ACLU — It is common for nations where mass atrocities have taken place to engage in the process of reparation and repair. This process happened in Germany after the Holocaust, South Africa after apartheid, and here in the United States, forty years after the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II. As a result, international human rights bodies have sought to lend their expertise to the process, often by…

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Former Vice President Joe Biden

Biden’s Words on Racial Equality Ring Hollow

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Zachary R. Wood, The Washington Informer  — “I think the Democratic Party could stand a liberal George Wallace — someone who’s not afraid to stand up and offend people, someone who wouldn’t pander, but would say what the American people know in their gut is right.” Former Vice President Joe Biden uttered these words in an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer in 1975. But before we proceed, I have…

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Visitors and performers at Brazil’s ‘Confederate Party,’ held each April in São Paulo state.

Brazil’s long, strange love affair with the Confederacy ignites racial tension

By Editors' Choice, Reparations

By Jordan Brasher, The Conversation — The aroma of fried chicken and biscuits roused my appetite as the country sounds of Alison Krauss, Alan Jackson and Johnny Cash played over the loudspeakers. This might have been a county fair back home in Tennessee, but it wasn’t. I was in a cemetery in rural Brazil, at the “Festa Confederada” – the “Confederate Party” – an annual celebration of southern U.S. heritage held each April in Santa Bárbara…

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Martin Luther King

The Big Lie About Race and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Nkechi Taifa and Mark Osler — As politicians and office-holders trot out their annual tributes to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., beware of a big lie that has too often been front and center in these speeches. In short, it is this: That there was racism in America, that Dr. King came and solved the problem, and now we are lucky to live in a post-racial America. This narrative…

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Young Brazilians Share Their Fears About a Bolsonaro Presidency

Young Brazilians Share Their Fears About a Bolsonaro Presidency

By Commentaries/Opinions

“I want a country where black people and LGBTQ individuals can walk freely. As a woman, I want to walk around without being afraid I’ll get raped.” By Gislene Ramos, Vice — On Tuesday, October 30, thousands of young people took to the streets of São Paulo, Brazil to protest the far-right ideas of Jair Bolsonaro, the authoritarian candidate who won the country’s presidential elections on Sunday. According to the organizers…

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Jean-Jacques Dessalines

Meet Haiti’s Founding Father — His Black Revolution Was Too Radical for Thomas Jefferson

By Reparations

Modern scholarship is reexamining Haiti’s founding father. Julia Gaffield, The Conversation — Crowds cheered as local lawmakers on August 18 unveiled a street sign showing that Rogers Avenue in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn would now be called Jean-Jacques Dessalines Boulevard, after a Haitian slave turned revolutionary general. When Dessalines declared Haiti’s independence from France in 1804 after a 13-year slave uprising and civil war, he became the Americas’ first black head…

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