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Dr. Ben Carson and lessons from Clarence Thomas

Dr. Ben Carson and lessons from Clarence Thomas

I will never forget the debate that engulfed Black America at the time of the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court. On the one side was the fact of his conservative record and his not having any semblance of a history as a staunch advocate for African-American rights. On the other hand, […]

How to win elections behind the ‘Cotton Curtain’

How to win elections behind the ‘Cotton Curtain’

We won the Voting Rights Act of 1965 at Selma, combining the power of a principled mass movement led by Dr. King and a compassionate president who did the right thing despite the heavy political price. What was that cost? Well, President Johnson said it best at the time, when he told his aides that […]

Ohioans lose millions to loan fees

Ohioans lose millions to loan fees

Despite a landslide voter decision in 2008 to cap payday lending rates at 28 percent, the state’s small-dollar, high-cost lending has continued to grow and now doubles the amount of fees charged a decade ago. Each year, Ohio consumers who only needed a small-dollar loan wind up with more than $502 million in fees drained […]

Yes, change is gonna come

Yes, change is gonna come

JAMES WASHINGTON GUEST COLUMNIST Most of us would agree with the concept that the one sure thing that we know about life is change. The comparison to a roller coaster seems appropriate, and a frightening one at that. Life is full of twists and turns and inevitable ups and downs with people coming and going […]

What’s wrong with the truth?

What’s wrong with the truth?

Award-winning film director Quentin Tarantino gets high props for stepping up to tell some truth about the many murders of African-Americans at the hands of misbehaving police officers. How, after all, can you justify the killing of a baby boy, Tamir Rice?  Or the illegal choking of Eric Garner?  Michael Brown stole some cigarillos.  Does […]

Rigged: Racial bias in jury selection

Rigged: Racial bias in jury selection

“Illegal and unconstitutional jury selection procedures cast doubt on the integrity of the whole judicial process. They create the appearance of bias in the decision of individual cases, and they increase the risk of actual bias as well.” – Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, Peters v. Kiff (1972) During the Reconstruction Era, Congress passed the […]

Truth will set you free

Truth will set you free

A wise sage once said, “A lie can run around the world before the truth has gotten its shoes on.” Assessing the performance of Republican presidential candidates in the current campaign, I can only assume that those responsible for their coaching used that quote as foundation for their last preparation, because the lies were flying fast […]

Where are our women? Where are our educators?

Where are our women? Where are our educators?

Richland County, S.C. Senior Deputy Sheriff Ben Fields seemed to think the only way he could get a young Black girl out of her seat was to fling her across the room.  His brutal attack on her was filmed by one of her classmates, and it’s a good thing he documented the incident. It was […]

We must stop tolerating ‘condemning Blackness’

We must stop tolerating ‘condemning Blackness’

In 2011, Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, executive director of the Schaumburg Center for Research in Black Culture, published his book, “The Condemnation of Blackness.” I suggest it as required reading for anyone interested in historical dynamics that have led to our contemporary position of asserting that “Black Lives Matter.” Dr. Muhammad sat for an interview […]

Convene a national commission on race and poverty

Convene a national commission on race and poverty

When America’s founders wrote the Constitution, Blacks were considered three-fifths human. In a compromise at the constitutional convention, the U.S. Constitution was written to allow slave states to count each slave as three-fifths of a person for the purposes of the census and for elections. Slaves couldn’t vote, but they could increase the population and […]