Hence, This is Racist

In a recent article, “Eight Actions to Reduce Racism in College Classrooms,” Shaun R. Harper, founder and executive director of the Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania, and I offer a series of recommendations emerging from the more than 40 campus climate assessments conducted by the center. The first action challenges college faculty to recognize their implicit biases and to remediate their racial illiteracy.

Read More

In Defense of Survivors

On November 13, 2013, entertainment news (read tabloid) company TMZ uncovered a police report naming Florida State University freshman quarterback and Heisman frontrunner, Jameis Winston. This is not an essay about Jameis Winston, per se. I will not engage in speculating about the nature of Winston’s involvement or his understanding of happenings other than those defended to be consensual. I do, however, wish to address broader topics and systems of oppression converging to create an familiar narrative about rape culture, sport, and exceptionalism in defense of rape survivors.

Read More

More Children Left Behind?

This weekend, town halls in association with NBC News’ Education Nation introduced a number of different concerns within our nation’s educational system. Dr. Melissa Harris Perry hosted several students whom brought to the fore their concerns related to school safety, criminalization of youth, unfair academic standards, and additional social and economic challenges impeding their success and that of their peers. While much of my current work examines issues social justice organizing in education, particularly student activism in college, I want to use this space to engage an ongoing concern for K-12 educators and students, the Common Core State Standards (CSSS).

Read More

JUSTICE FOR TRAYVON: Now What?

I was sitting in a loft on the South Side of Dallas (TX) late last night when the verdict was reported. Like you, I was greatly disappointed, even angry, but not at all surprised to hear “we the jury find the defendant ... not guilty.” It was as if the attempt to objectively and unemotionally read the verdict conveyed the inevitable truth of George Zimmerman’s legal innocence, perhaps as convincingly as his definitive guilt in many of our minds. I knew the time was approaching, but yet and still, I immediately felt deflated and unprepared for a productive response, individually or as a community of socially conscious citizens against injustice. 

Read More