W. Kamau Bell is one of my favorite comedians because he combines smart takes on political issues and a passion for social justice with also just being very funny. In this video from his new album, he talks about frustrations with white people not believing people of color when they say something was racist.
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I first became aware of Equal Justice Initiative when I read Just Mercy. I had heard other activists speak reverently about this book by Bryan Stevenson. The book chronicles his move to Alabama to start an organization to defend poor people battling a racist justice system and free those who have been wrongfully convicted. It’s a searing indictment of our criminal justice system and a beautiful meditation on the concept of mercy and how it should infuse our culture and our approach to criminal justice. Read more
This week’s pick goes back to a 1975 interview in which a young, inexperienced Helen Mirren deftly shuts down a sexist interviewer. As a reminder that we still have work to do, Mirren noted that when he interviewed her in 2006, he started off once again by asking about her breasts.
A bystander’s guide to standing up against Islamophobic harassment
4 really disturbing ways jail is much worse for women than men
Why do we doubt and police those seeking permanent contraception?
Watch the first episodes of Atlanta and Queen Sugar, 2 new shows by black creators, for free
The 5 most feminist moments in Netflix’s hit summer show Stranger Things
Luke Cage: a bulletproof black man in the #BlackLivesMatter era
As our culture and media evolve to allow more open discussion about racism and give people a platform for calling out offensive behavior, we’ve seen an unsurprising backlash. People get up in arms about being targeted for their racism, and act as though correctly labeling their actions as racist is worse than the racist acts themselves (just ask the governor who is continually embarrassing my home state).
AJ+ YouTube channel Newsbroke does a terrific sendup of this phenomenon with a satirical workplace training video on protecting the feelings of white coworkers who can’t handle being confronted about their own racism.