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July 2020

Dad Fills Daughter With Pride and Self-Love Through Music (The Dad)

By Yael Meshulam, July 19, 2020, The Dad. There are certain things we know about raising kids. We know roughly how much to feed them ( one million snacks per day ), how much they need to sleep, we know to take them to the doctor when they get sick – but there is so much about raising kids that we genuinely don’t know. Sure, we can do our best to set good examples, but there is no textbook way to help kids grow into strong, resilient, confident, kind, adults. Since there is no one concrete...

HUD revokes Obama-era rule designed to diversify the suburbs (SJR)

By Ashraf Khalil, July 23, 2020, The Associated Press. WASHINGTON — The Trump administration said Thursday that it is revoking an Obama-era housing regulation designed to eliminate racial disparities in the suburbs, a move that fair housing advocates have decried as an election year stunt designed to manipulate the fears of white voters. In a tweet addressed to “The Suburban Housewives of America,” President Donald Trump made his intended audience clear. “Biden will destroy your neighborhood...

Structural Racism and its Impact on Black Maternal Health (New Security Beat)

By Deekshita Ramanarayan, July 21, 2020, New Security Beat. “The past months have been profoundly difficult for our nation, and for Black communities in particular,” said Representative Lauren Underwood (D-IL-14) at a recent March of Dimes event on the impact of structural racism on maternal health. COVID-19 has highlighted health outcome inequity caused by race and racism. Though Black people constitute 13 percent of the U.S. population, the CDC estimates they represent over 30 percent of...

Reclaiming African Herbalism as an Act of Resistance (yesmagazine.org)

I was fairly new to the study of plant medicine when I was introduced to herbalist Sade Musa, who leads the community education and healing project Roots of Resistance . Part of my commitment to self-care and reducing harm meant getting in touch with Mother Earth and learning to seek her out in moments of overwhelm, but it was frustrating that most of the traditions I was being introduced to were European or repackaged indigenous practices. I was starting to feel like the only way to get in...

John Lewis on Love, Forgiveness, and the Seedbed of Personal Strength (brainpickings.org)

Once in a generation, if we are lucky, someone comes about who in every aspect of their being models for us how to do that, how to be that — how to place love at the center, the center that holds solid as all around it breaks, the solid place that becomes the fort of what is unbreakable in us and the fulcrum of change. Among those rare, miraculous few was John Lewis (February 21, 1940–July 17, 2020), who began his life by preaching to the chickens at his parents’ farm in southern Alabama and...

Loss of Cultural Identity Part 2; Illegal to Practice Traditional Religion in Benin Republic, West Africa until 1992

Over the next few days, I am going to provide a little food for thought about the loss of cultural identity that has profoundly impacted Africans across the Diaspora. Remember that the descendants of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade that live off of the Continent, are perhaps the only collective in the world that does not know their origin. We are African, but Africa is a continent of fifty-four countries with thousands of different cultures and dialects. Today’s micro-discussion is on...

Loss of Cultural Identity Part 1; HUGE Number of Blacks in America Carry Slave Names

Over the next few days, I am going to provide a little food for thought about the loss of cultural identity that has profoundly impacted Africans across the Diaspora. Remember that the descendants of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade that live off of the Continent, are perhaps the only collective in the world that does not know their origin. We are African, but Africa is a continent of fifty-two countries with thousands of different cultures and dialects. Today’s micro-discussion is on names.

In historic move, North Carolina city approves reparations for Black residents (USA Today)

By Joel Burgess, July 15, 2020, ASHEVILLE CITIZEN TIMES. ASHEVILLE, N.C. – In an extraordinary move, the Asheville City Council has apologized for the North Carolina city's historic role in slavery, discrimination and denial of basic liberties to Black residents and voted to provide reparations to them and their descendants. The 7-0 vote came the night of July 14. "Hundreds of years of Black blood spilled that basically fills the cup we drink from today," said Councilman Keith Young, one of...

Does Your Organization Unconsciously Operate with a White Supremacy Culture? 4 White Supremacy Culture Scenarios

As we endure the pain of lost loved ones, manage the anxiety of financial insecurity and potentially fret over becoming ill, it is a brilliant time for change in our country and around the world. There is a special kind of racist exclusion in America. When I took my young son to live in India, initially, he struggled everyday on the bus to school. There was a lot of hazing and bullying from older students. I remember him begging me to please take him to school in a rickshaw so that he didn’t...

George Soros’s Foundation Pours $220 Million Into Racial Equality Push (nytimes.com)

Mr. Soros’s group will invest $150 million in grants for Black-led racial justice groups, and another $70 million toward local grants for criminal justice reform and civic engagement opportunities. The Open Society Foundations, the philanthropic group founded by the business magnate George Soros, will announce on Monday that it is investing $220 million in efforts to achieve racial equality in America, a huge financial undertaking that will support several Black-led racial justice groups for...

With rolling protest, Black Montrealers denounce the challenge of 'driving while Black' (CBC News)

By Claire Loewen, July 6, 2020, CBC News. Convoys of luxury and other vehicles driven by Black drivers hit the streets of Montreal Sunday as part of a demonstration to denounce racial profiling, and to bring awareness to the phenomenon of "driving while Black," in which members of the Black community are frequently stopped by police. Kenrick McRae, whose racial profiling complaint led to a police ethics committee decision in December that found two Montreal officers acted unlawfully when...

The Radical Quilting of Rosie Lee Tompkins (NYT)

By Roberta Smith, June 29, 2020, NYT. In 1997 I walked into the Berkeley Art Museum to be greeted by a staggering sight: an array of some 20 quilts unlike any I had ever seen. Their unbridled colors, irregular shapes and nearly reckless range of textiles telegraphed a tremendous energy and the implacable ambition, and confidence, of great art. They were crafted objects that transcended quilting, with the power of painting. This made them canon-busting, and implicitly subversive. They gave...

Returning to the Great Mother to Heal Historical Trauma

My early life was defined by deep emotional pain and turmoil. In exchange for all that I endured, I was gifted reunification with the Motherland. As a young person, I stood on the same shore where my ancestors lost their freedom as the clear blue ocean water licked my feet and enticed me with her beauty. It was an anointing. Finally, I was home. For the past 27 years, I have been deeply submerged in West African culture. Throughout that time, I have lived on and off the Continent; spending...

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