Off the Moral Compass

by Alexis Farmer

Churches should be more than just places of worship; they should be community hubs for their neighborhoods. Why don’t more churches host job training programs or literacy programs for incarcerated or formerly incarcerated persons; food and clothing drives throughout the year, and not just during Christmas; and gardening programs and community beautification events? Why aren’t there more Christians serving meals in their churches during the summer, when many kids struggle to find a meal because they are not in school? Where are the youth programs? Where are the shelters for marginalized youth and veterans? Where are our soldiers of Christ to serve those on the margins of society? It seems as though there is a lost obligation to humanity; to truly treat everyone as his or her brother and sister.

The Supreme Court and the 'Arc of the Moral Universe'

by Eli Day

Change in America often occurs at an agonizingly sluggish pace. We’ve come to expect our republic to operate precisely in the ways anticipated and forewarned by its architects: refining itself gradually, in fits and starts, shot through with truculent deliberation and factional quarreling. Battle lines are no longer merely drawn—they’re etched irrevocably into the fabric of our political universe, thwarting any hope of rapid change.

The Moral Case for Thinking Impractically

by Eli Day

Our long praise of pragmatic thinkers is stained by our meager respect for the rebels who were never practical enough to accept what was coming for them. Visionaries who saw through “well that just isn’t practical” as the evidence of thoughtlessness working hard to disguise itself as wisdom. That people have an interest in the disguise is unsurprising. But as James Baldwin once quipped, “One wishes they would say so more often.”

On 'White Parties'

by Kennedy Clark

So going to a white party, generally doesn’t have the same results for all party goers. For some it devalues and diminishes as they stand in line, subjected to sexism and judgement from yelling obnoxious boys . And not everyone is racist, or judgmental, or prejudice, but experiences differ. And and unfortunately at [the University of Michigan], they are rarely positive for certain individuals.

Posted on June 16, 2015 .

Our Choice: The New Black or The New Black Power

by Rashad J. Buni

By reviving the Black Power movement, we can shift our efforts from changing the trajectory of the pendulum to transforming the workings of the clock that drives it. Sometimes the revolutionary option is the best option. A quick perusal through history will show you that attitudes like "The New Black" or disproportionate police brutality has always been present in America.

Different Shades

by William Garner

I think there is a serious issue that needs to be addressed before real change can occur through black cooperation. We have still not forgotten what we were conditioned to believe hundreds of years ago about our various shades. Every #blacklivesmatter hash tag is undermined by someone generalizing another person as a ‘light-skin’ or ‘dark-skin.’ Every atrocity committed by the police is seen as just that much less atrocious by black people’s distaste for themselves; their own kind. Every time a black person dares to speak in criticism of his or her own people it is seen as borderline hate speech and uncle-tomming, which is eventually related to that persons skin tone.

#BlackLivesMatter: An Open Letter to Black Healers

by Ciarra Ross

For centuries, Black and Brown bodies have been riddled with the physical, mental and emotional symptoms of living in a land ruled by a larger disease—white supremacist patriarchy. As many of us carry the weight of unhealed ancestral trauma and present oppression, Black Americans face some of the highest levels of depression, stress, disease, addiction and anxiety in the nation. As practitioners and creators of holistic healing arts, it is critical that we engage with our health and healing, both personally and collectively. The preservation and growth of our movement(s) depends on it.

Notes on Baltimore

by Damon Mitchell

The situation in Baltimore isn't an "unjustifiable" riot. It is an uprising against the social order of white supremacy. Exiting the Mayflower and lashing out against Native Americans through rape, torture, murder, culture degradation and destruction is what you could call an unjustifiable riot. An unjustifiable riot would be burning down neighborhoods to celebrate your school's NCAA championship win. It's important for Baltimore officials to understand that you cannot make a suggestion of the riots being "unjustifiable" without also questioning the dysfunctional behavior of the Baltimore Police Department.

On Non-Black People Saying Nigga

by Kevin Rigby, Jr.

When non-Black people, but especially other people of color, use the n-word, it isn’t just mean. It is an act of violence, of theft, and of divisiveness so severe as to render any attempts at solidarity moot. The n-word, as Black people use it today, is perhaps our best attempt at demanding our humanity and our right to define ourselves. The word encompasses our history, our current realities, and the love and solidarity we have for one another. It creates a space in which we might articulate ourselves.

Posted on May 13, 2015 and filed under Op-eds.

Metro Detroit Unity & the Tradition of American Mythology

by Eli Day

Mythology means never having to do the hard work of thinking, all while living safely in fantasy. But for black Detroit, rebranding the metro area as a haven of inclusion is little more than cheap varnish. It’s nostalgia for an era that never was. I wish it were otherwise, but the conquered can least afford the price of myth. The point isn’t that unity can never exist alongside tension; it's that unity, by definition, can never take hold where historical rifts remain.

Posted on May 13, 2015 and filed under Op-eds.

Rightful Resistance

by Jonnaé Bryant

We have known struggle. Struggle requires us to continually insist on and affirm our humanity, reveal the ways in which racism covertly informs our institutions, and to envision a world that can offer us hope. We cannot budge. Saying goes “the struggle is real” and we have to persist or we die effortlessly and carelessly in vain. I think of struggle and the blood of ancestors, freedom fighters, and martyrs from every generation. Blood sheds, stains, and leaves us with brown residue. Unequivocally, this is what it means to live, to be black, and to die in America.

It's Handled: The Black Female Voice in Politics

by Lauren Bealore

Recently, Hillary Clinton announced her candidacy in the quest for the 2016 Presidential seat. For many that follow politics, it is no surprise that the offer for that position was on the table for her since 2008; however, it must be noted that the world has changed vastly since that period of time. Race relations alone stemming from police brutality have stirred up the conversation of where African Americans stand when it comes to their role in law and justice. This frames the question: how will African American women play a role in this election? Will we ever have upward mobility within the United States social hierarchy?

Message in a Bottle: A New Democratic Strategy

by Lauren Bealore

The November 2014 mid-term elections left the entire country in a state of utter shock. Democrats everywhere had mouths agape as they watched the results trickle in through various news outlets with Republican candidates dominating state after state, from State Houses and Senates to the U.S. House and Senate to Governor.