I have no doubt that the standoff in Ferguson -- the demand for change -- goes this deep. I also have no doubt that tear gas won't pacify the protesters and replace their anger with fear of authority. Neither will all the military hardware the Defense Department can supply.
Think you have a pretty good idea of what's going on in Ferguson, Missouri? You may not, even if you've been watching a lot of cable news. Especially if you've been watching a lot of cable news. If the media's job is to give viewers and readers an accurate and full idea of what's really going on, we have to acknowledge that there is a long way to go. Of course, Ferguson is not an isolated case. But it is a chance for those of us in the media to expand our understanding of our role in covering the news. At HuffPost we are certainly covering the violence and the underlying racial tensions, but we are also committed to telling the "untold story" (as our splash put it on Tuesday) -- of compassion, ingenuity, kindness, trust, collaboration and community.
My preferring not to have intercourse might be less about a distaste for the actual act (or pain, or boredom) than it is about the way in which too many guys approach it, not just as the endgame but as the only way to truly score.
The politics of respectability in the black community may not only hinder us from acting and engaging in the constructive protest, lobbying and collective action needed to create a more just society, as it has with respect to the Ferguson protests, but it may also prevent us from simply being and living freely.
If you also believe that most Black families in the United States have talked about Ferguson, what does it say about the rest of us if we have not?
The nation's focus on the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri confers yet another opportunity for deeper racial understanding, but like other (too many other) teachable moments arising from the tragic loss of young black life, the opportunity is fleeting and frail.
It's time for Missouri's right-wingers to leave the nineteenth century behind. It is time for all Missourians -- indeed, time for all Americans -- to start building a more just and equitable world, one free of institutional racism and yawning racial disparities.
Tank Burt is no stranger to the intimacy of the unsaid. As a director she's been honing her craft with shorts like Skateboard, Skateboard, a coming-of-age story told virtually without dialogue, and now she's made her feature debut as an actress.
Aggressively punitive and extreme drug policies are steeped in racism. Inherent in the response to drug law enforcement is a biased approach and stark double standards in the perceived threat of drug use by marginalized people.
Improving policing in departments with entrenched cultures has proven a challenging endeavor. Departmental culture plays a defining role in how police officers conduct their work, and it flows from the top, or, as they say, rots from the head.
The point is that black American life and white American life stay rigidly separated at absolutely key moments of human communication. Do some people feel they are "better" than some other people? Or maybe it's not that at all. Does it, in fact, cut far deeper?
It's up to elected officials in Ferguson and communities across the country, and to the people who live in them, to address the deep-seated societal problems that fueled the explosion of outrage following the Brown shooting.
Long before Brown's parents had to think about burying him, Brown felt the weight of the social death black men experience that readies too many of us for our actual deaths.
Even a slacker can be debt-free. Here's how.
Venting is easy and natural in these circumstances; restraint is hard. By rational, reasoned response we can block the next senseless killing and break the age-old pattern that has become ordinary in our country.
I am still trying to deconstruct why the Ferguson community's outpouring of grief, loss and anger was met with such an impersonal, aggressive and unrelenting show of militarized police use of force uncharacteristic of peacetime policing.
We know all too well the proximate causes of the rage in Ferguson but there are other much deeper socio-economic causes as well, namely the way the school systems, the economy, and particularly the labor market are structured so as to exclude cruelly so many from the American Dream.
A possible interpretation of the theme song and the show being is that you have to be grateful for the good times (the positives) in order to see your way through the remaining challenges.
Last night, BlackVoices.com attended the opening of Lincoln Center Theater's production of John Guare's new play, 'A Free Man of Color,' directed by George C. Wolfe and starring Tony, Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Jeffrey Wright and rapper Mos Def.
The cast also features Yao Ababio Peter Bartlett, Nicole Beharie, Arnie Burton, Rosal Colón, Veanne Cox, Paul Dano, Sara Gettelfinger, Derric Harris, Justina Machado, Joseph Marcell, John McMartin, Nick Mennell, Teyonnah Parris, Postell Pringle, Esau Pritchett, Brian Reddy, Reg Rogers, Triney Sandoval, Robert Stanton, Wendy Rich Stetson, Jerome Stigler, Senfaub Stoney and David Emerson Toney.
Notabables in attendance included Ben Stiller, Stockard Channing, S. Epatha Merkerson, Lynn Whitfield, producer Stephen C. Byrd, Andre Harrell, Rosie Perez and the singing group Sweet Honey in the Rock.
'A Free Man of Color,' is a freewheeling epic set in 19th-century New Orleans. Jacques Cornet, the title character (played by Wright), is a new-world Don Juan and the wealthiest inhabitant of this sexually charged and racially progressive city. Jacques thinks all is well in his paradise until history intervenes, setting off a chain of events that no one, much less this free man of color, realizes is about to splinter the world.
For Wright, who won a Tony Award for his portrayal of a gay nurse forced to take care of a homophobic Roy Cohn as he lay dying from AIDS in Tony Kushner's 1994 award-winning play 'Angels in America,' it's a return to stage after performing with Mos Def in 2002's 'Topdog/Underdog.'
"It's great to be back on stage," he told BlackVoices.com. "
This play has really rekindled my passion for acting because it's such a nightly challenge; it requires my entire focus, so I feel great. John Guare wrote a brilliant piece, and it needed to be fully realized. We were waiting for the right opportunity to do that. Lincoln Center provided an incredible, nurturing environment to allow that to happen."
Both Wright and Mos Def talked about their fondness for one another and about making sure the show has a meaningful impact.
JW: I love Mos, and it's easier than 'Topdog' because in that play he was my brother and in this play, he's my slave. That makes for an easier dynamic. As for the show, we are all inspired to be free people of color, so I don't think there's anything more that needs to be said. This is a play about who we are as Americans and as African Americans. It's a play that wraps its arms around the complexity of our history, our past and our present, so folks should come to see it.
Mos Def: Jeffrey's a friend, a mentor and a good guy. Doing the play is challenging, but very rewarding. I hope it's as rewarding for the audience as it is for the company.
Joseph Marcell, Wendy Rich Stetson & David Emerson Toney
Peter Bartlett, Justina Machado & John Guare
George C. Wolfe & Rosie Perez
Jerome Stigler, Reg Rogers & Derric Harris
Esau Pritchett & wife
Lynn Whitfield and Stephen C. Byrd, producer of 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof'