The Afro-Netizen has some solid articles up that I want to comment on.

1) Somalia — Black people’s eyebrows tend to rise a little whenever there’s any serious U.S. government interest in Africa since the usual mode is blithe ignorance and dismissal. For example, Darfur. So I got an “aha” when I read this article and saw that the Horn of Africa is oil-rich. No wonder the Bush regime is so interested. And I thought they wanted to do something about Al-Qaeda finally. Silly me. The Bush strategy for dealing with a Democratic Congress would appear to be do whatever we want before we get caught/stopped such as beginning the Iraqi troop escalation before Congress can say no.

2) James Brown helped to popularize the term “Black” as a self-description now used throughout American society — almost single-handedly. It was an example of the power of black radio. Today, one of the wealthiest and most powerful black women in America, billionaire Cathy Hughes, built her empire in black radio and has since launched a compelling, less embarrassing competitor to BET — TVOne. How much money and power is there in black radio? Ask Tom Joyner, Steve Harvey, Tavis Smiley and all the politicians and corporations supporting their programs. Props to the Black Agenda Report for this analysis.

3) The Oprah Effect. It would be easy to look at the success of Oprah, Magic Johnson, Kenneth Chenault and say, wow black people are doing alright. There’s no need for programs to level the playing field like affirmative action. African-Americans wield more economic and political power than ever before. But we still have an uphill climb.

Economic inequality correlated so closely with race that:

• African-Americans were twice as likely to be unemployed as whites.
• To attain equal employment in the United States between blacks and white, 700,000 more
• African-Americans would have had to be moved out of unemployment and nearly two million
African-Americans would have to be promoted into higher paying positions.
• The poverty rate for blacks was more than twice the rate for whites.
• Nearly one out of every two blacks earned less than $25,000 but one in three whites made that little.
• Median black household income ($27,000) was less than two thirds of median white household income ($42,000).
• Black families’ median household net worth was less than 10 percent that of whites. The average white household has a net worth of $84,000 but the average black household is worth only $7,500.
• Blacks were much less likely to own their own homes than whites.
Nearly three-fourths of white families but less than half of black families owned their homes.

We must achieve solid economic power if we are to exert real political power. Discussions of affirmative action that howl about making sure that the economically disadvantaged be taken into account rarely talk about the strong correlation between race and economic disadvantage. And the fact that racial discrimation is one of the root causes of poverty (at least if you believe these stats). Hmm…why is that?

Man, I don’t know about you but I am all Christmas’d out. I don’t think I can handle another Christmas season for at least a year. I am still getting back into the swing of things and coasting on the good vibes and joyful outlook of the holidays. Until today that is.

The NAACP Image Awards were announced today and my initial reaction was: please tell me why I should care? Why is this a news story? Is anyone in America interested in anything African-Americans say or do or need that does not include entertainment or athletics (which is actually a form of entertainment in my opinion)?

Furthermore, I am sorry. But it looks like a whole lot of time, attention and dollars went into creating this flashy website for the NAACP Image Awards. Don’t get me wrong…it is very slick. Dazzling, fast-paced and professional.

Would it be at all possible to put a fraction of those resources into protesting the Iraq war or into Katrina relief or into racial profiling, climate change, education, jobs and healthcare? Would it be possible for the NAACP to put its moral weight and star connections strongly behind any of those issues facing ordinary African-Americans — and Americans in general everyday. Maybe that’s a crazy question. But just maybe it’s a question the NAACP’s 500,000 members need to start asking.

I will be watching the awards show on March 2 to see if any of these current issues are represented or if the theme is all about the accomplishments of the past. For if the NAACP can turn away from the victims of Katrina in their time of need — at the moment this post was written, not one word on the NAACP’s home page mentions Hurricane Katrina) — then whom and what do they now truly stand for.

I’ll tell you whom. The growing black middle and upper classes. From Variety:

Gordon’s biz background also jibes with the org’s evolving struggle for equality, which is no longer just about civil rights: One of his key goals as org president will be to gain more traction for minority-owned businesses in the corporate world, he explains.

“The focus is civil rights. That is what we have done and will continue to do,” Gordon says. “But there will be more of a focus than there has been previously on economic rights and economic justice. That allows advancement in other aspects of civil rights.”

And as far as Gordon is concerned, there’s no business like show business. “We want to make sure we’re in the middle of the entertainment action,” he says.

Issues around racism, minority portrayals and hiring in Hollywood exist, no doubt. Let’s read between the lines here though. Listen up black people — the NAACP wants to help you make more money. As one of the 2/3rds of black people in America today making money, making more money sounds great to me.

Yet, there are serious issues facing our nation. It’s time for the NAACP and their peer organizations to show that they are serious about representing the concerns of their members in addressing those issues.

Prometheus 6 says that brand new Rep. Keith Ellison from Minnesota is a better man than him for speaking cordially to hate-baiting Rep. Virgil Goode. I’m not sure about that as I like Pro 6, yet I agree that Keith Ellison has so much more to offer America than token status as the first Muslim elected to Congress.

Check out his widely read opinion piece “Choose Generosity, Not Exclusion” he wrote for Newsweek that was linked by the Washington Post. His progressive voice of tolerance, compassion and common sense is badly needed in an American agenda gone awry.

Read it. Here’s a snip:

If scarcity is a myth, then poverty is not necessary. America need not have 37 million Americans living below the poverty line. It is a choice. Hunger is a choice. Exclusion of the stranger, the immigrant, or the darker other is a choice.

We can choose generosity. In America today, we spend more on health care than any other industrialized nation, yet 46 Million people have none. Canada spends half of what we spend and covers everyone. Perfectly? Of course not. But adequately. That’s more than what a lot of people have right now.

We live in a society which says that there is enough for a tax break for the wealthy but not enough for an increase in the minimum wage or for national health care. There is enough for subsidies to oil and coal companies but not for families who are struggling to afford child care or a college education. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

We need more men in the CBC like Rep. Ellison.

(Sorry for the belated post — I had trouble getting into Blogger yesterday. How about you?)

Now that the Congressional Black Caucus is flexing their new power, it’s important for us to keep an eye on them. As we know, different rules apply still for black folk. Our actions are viewed as representative not just of one person, but of an entire race.

Which is why Dollar Bill’s continued bad apple behavior reflects poorly on the CBC bunch that refuses to distance themselves from him.

Rep. Bill Jefferson recently sent around a fundraising letter to his House colleagues with hat in hand asking for money to retire $200K in campaign debts. He violated the rules by sending it on Congressional stationary however. You’d think a guy in this much trouble trying to explain the $90K found in his freezer would be more careful. CBC members had better be careful lest they be tarred with the same brush. Get the scoop at Political Wire.

Gerald Ford and James Brown died only within a day of each other. You may be wondering how those 2 connect. Ford may not have known this but James Brown wrote a song about Ford called “Funky President (People It’s Bad)” in the wake of the Watergate meltdown.

Given all the talk about escalating a failed, non-defensive war in a foreign land, I think it’s not a waste of time to look back at the close of the Vietnam era and what people were saying and thinking at that time about their political leadership.

If you’re not black, you may be curious, dismissive or even contemptuous about all the attention given to James Brown’s funeralization process. Brown’s posthumous farewell tour of several American cities with its celebrity appearances and patient queues of people waiting to pay their respects mirrored Ford’s pomp and circumstance in a way. That’s because musicians like Brown are not only creatives but spokesmen. You can say and do things through art that may not be acceptable otherwise. This has been particularly true for African-Americans as historically, our real political and economic power through the establishment tended to be thwarted and curtailed. Brown was one of those artists like Kanye West and Marvin Gaye who used his influence and medium to communicate. “Say It Loud — I’m Black and I’m Proud!” Call it social power.

Things are different in 2007. One of the founders of the Congressional Black Caucus (Charlie Rangel) is about to become one of the most powerful Congressmen in Washington as the Chair of the Ways and Means Committee. Another CBC member, Barack Obama, is a frontrunner and serious potential contender for the White House. Now that we are gaining actual political and economic power to match our social power, African-Americans need to do more than revere musicians who push on the powers that and recognize that now WE are the powers that be. We need to start asking and expecting more from our elected leaders — black, white and otherwise — as citizens with an equal stake and an equal contribution in the success of America.

In the meantime, here are a few stanzas from Funky President:

Hey, country
Didn’t say what you meant
Just changed
Brand new funky President

Stock market going up
Jobs going down
And ain’t no funking
Jobs to be found

Taxes keep going up
I changed from a glass
Now I drink out of a paper cup
It’s getting bad

Turn on your funk motor
I know it’s tough
Turn on your funk motor
Until you get enough

I got to say it again
We got to get together
And buy some land
Raise our food just like the Man
Save our money, do like the Mob
Put up your fight right on the job

We gotta get over
Before we go under
Time’s getting short, Lord

Country, do you know
Just what I meant
We just changed, we got
A brand new funky President

Jackson speaks for me on this one. And probably a lot of other African-Americans too. From his official statement:

“The U.S. should discourage the barbarity of hanging Saddam Hussein. His execution will not make us safer or more secure. It will not increase our moral authority in the world. It will increase tensions.

Saddam’s heinous crimes against humanity can never be diminished, for he was our ally while doing them. Pictures of Saddam and Rumsfeld shaking hands have been projected all over the world. His trial and preparation for hanging are taking place while he is in U.S. custody.

“An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth” will make us blind and disfigured. The most civilized of us must break the cycle of violence.

To whom is the U.S. accountable for our role in thousands killings and being killed in Iraq? For our role as invader and occupier, under false pretense of weapons of mass destruction and al-Qaeda connections and imminent threat? We must not live above the world, nor operate beyond the rules of international laws. Saddam as a war trophy only deepens the catastrophe in which we are embroiled.”

Jeralyn at TalkLeft is reporting that Saddam may be hung as soon as 10pm EST or 6am Baghdad time. According to the BBC: The U.S State Dept has “cabled all embassies, and also denied reports that Iraq’s former leader had already been transferred to Iraqi custody.” Steve Gilliard says: “Weak governments kill their enemies” and compares the execution to that of the Russia czar and their family by a still fragile Soviet state.

Saddam Hussein was a tyrant and despot, no doubt. Yet, this probably, um, wasn’t one of the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, I’m guessing. Is there a risk that this will exacerbate the situation on the ground while making Hussein a martyr of the American occupation of Iraq? Doesn’t this action of hangin’ Hussein high put our troops at even greater peril?

Our European allies tend to see capital punishment as barbaric so I have real concern about our deteriorating image abroad both there and in the Middle East. What exactly does the Bush Administration hope to gain in doing this? Don’t get me wrong –> Saddam Hussein = bad man. It’s said though that many Iraqis compare their lives under Saddam more favorably than their current lives under the U.S. occupation. Is Bush killing a perceived rival? This execution — aided, abetted and sponsored by America — seems like a risky maneuver at best that, like the Iraqi invasion itself, we may come to rue and regret. This just looks like a very bad idea.

There must be some rather complicated math behind CNN’s decision to text message “breaking news” to the people. Sanctions on Iran? Text it. Britney’s divorce? Text it. Death of one of the most influential musical and cultural figures of the 20th century? Nah!

James Brown, the Godfather of Soul, hardest working man in show business and many other titles died yesterday. He was 73 years old but still had moves like the 20-something who shook the foundation of American music 50 years ago, with more swagger, slide and coife than we knew how to handle, then or now.

Some music you can live without. Other music puts a nice beat into your head. For me, James Brown’s music transported me back through time and into the spirits of my parents. When I see old photos of them dashiki’d out, marching down the street, I hear James backing them up. And when I hear James, I see my parents loud, black and proud.

Let’s have a moment of silence for a man who barely gave us one himself.

While I’m here: habari gani!

Umoja — unity — the first day of Kwanzaa.

peace people.

Wow. Apparently she also said some stuff about Iraq and how she thinks we can still succeed there. Whatever. What people really noticed is (from the AP via Washington Times):

The nation’s highest-ranking black government official, Rice has said repeatedly she will not run for president despite high popularity ratings and measurable support in opinion polls.

“Yes, I think a black person can be elected president,” Rice said in an Associated Press interview Thursday.

Apparently she was asked whether watching Obama’s success, if Americans were ready to put a black presidential candidate in the White House. According to the article, about 80% of Americans say race does not matter to them at the polls. Hmm…we’ll see! Especially since she echoed what I think your average African-American thinks based on our daily experiences:

At the same time, [Rice] said, “we should not be naive. Race is still an issue in America. When a person walks into a room, race is evident. It’s something that I think is going to be with us for a very, very long time.”

I have to admit, this FiredogLake story doesn’t surprise me.

From Latina Lista:

The T. Don Hutto Residential Center in Taylor, Texas (on the outskirts of Austin, Texas) is a private detention facility operated by Corrections Corporation of America. It and a smaller center in Pennsylvania are the only two facilities in the country that are authorized to hold non-Mexican immigrant families and children on noncriminal charges.

What does this mean?

It means that at the Taylor facility of the 400 people “held” there, 200 are children. And all are families that can be held there for whatever length of time without due process conducted in a timely manner.

To top it off, as long as the men, women and children are held there, the facility’s operator draws a daily profit – per person.

The children range in age from infants on up.

I know everyone’s busy with the holidays. But please take a moment to let your Member of Congress know what’s going on (consider it the extra-special gift of knowledge) and feel free to let folks like the media know too. It’s too much like the internment camps set up for those of Japanese descent (but strangely not those of German descent) during WWII. The Bush administration’s continuing war on poor brown people must be exposed and it must be stopped. Democrats now have no excuse for letting this type of situation continue in the next Congress.

Happy holidays, y’all! Posting will be light during the holidays until the first week of January. I hope you enjoy the pause that refreshes.

One of my favorite Christmas songs is the Stevie Wonder classic “Someday at Christmas“, (listen) later recorded by the Jackson 5 and more recently by Mary J. Blige. “Someday at Christmas” was originally written in 1967 and references the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement. It’s a bit hopeful, I know. But hope is what we need when the words to this song seem so appropriate 40 years later. Let me share it with you (Feel free to swap in your favorite holiday for “Christmas” if you don’t celebrate it):

Someday at Christmas men won’t be boys
Playing with bombs like kids play with toys
One warm December our hearts will see
A world where men are free

Someday at Christmas there’ll be no wars
When we have learned what Christmas is for
When we have found what life’s really worth
There’ll be peace on earth

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime

Someday at Christmas we’ll see a Man
No hungry children, no empty hand
One happy morning people will share
Our world where people care

Someday at Christmas there’ll be no tears
All men are equal and no men have fears
One shining moment my heart ran away
From our world today

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime

Someday at Christmas man will not fail
Take hope because your love will prevail
Someday a new world that we can start
With hope in every heart

Someday all our dreams will come to be
Someday in a world where men are free
Maybe not in time for you and me
But someday at Christmastime
Someday at Christmastime

It’s the Iraqi Insurgency — And You Don’t Understand, Son!

Had to go old school and reference LL Cool J when I read the newspapers this am.

Bush’s thinking of a “surge” is dangerous and denial. We’ve lost the war already. All continuing denial of this self-evident truth costs us lives, our hard-earned tax dollars and our national reputation. Proof we’re losing the war? Baghdad is under siege and has very little electricity. The situation has gone from bad to worse to rout. Re-construction is not a real option under the current circumstances. Why — the insurgents have won the battle there. We are unlikely to get it back.

I’m with columnist Eugene Robinson. A “surge” or escalation, even if temporary is a really dumb idea.

Whom would they fight? Would they ally themselves with those elusive “mainstream” Sunnis, or maybe those publicity-shy “moderate” Shiites? Would they capture and hold territory, or would they continue the practice of staying for a while, turning the job over to Iraqi forces and then watching as the militias move back in? If an extra 20,000 troops were sent to Baghdad tomorrow, could they realistically be expected to establish order in a sprawling megacity where some two dozen armed militias control the streets? Since we would be providing 20,000 new targets for snipers and roadside bombs, how many do we calculate will die?

It is unconscionable to think about dispatching more young men and women to Iraq without the realistic expectation that their presence will make a differenBlogger beta: Jack and Jill Politics – Create Postce in a war that is no longer in our control. Here in Washington, proponents of a troop “surge” speak of giving the whole Iraq adventure one last try. But they sound as if they’re more concerned about projecting an image of American resolve than anything else. Does anyone think a symbolic troop increase is going to have the likes of Moqtada al-Sadr or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad tossing and turning through sleepless nights?

Conservatives have made America look weak and ridiculous on the world stage. They failed to go into Iraq with enough troops, failed to keep the country under control, failed to win hearts and minds. The humvees our troops drive are *still* not fully armored. It’s time to cut our losses now and take our lil handguns home.

From the last Racial Politics This Week article, you may have seen that I referenced the outrageous Department of Homeland Security racial profiling raids and some of the folks covering the story including Latina Lista, MigraMatters, The Unapologetic Mexican, Atrios and Pachacutec @ FireDogLake. Latina Lista is on it with 2 posts since then. Well, just so bloggers and others know, the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) released a statement earlier this evening (I got the email at 6pm) making a strong stand. Sort of weird to send this out after press deadlines, but whatever. Note to LULAC: get your press outreach and for pete’s sake that sad little Executive Director’s non-blog together. Blog softly and carry a big stick?

But I digress. The point is that LULAC is a really big organization with well over 100,000 members. Their structure is modeled after the NAACP. They have cred both on the local level in states where Hispanics are numerous and also at the federal level, where Latinos are recognized as a major swing vote. LULAC was one of the orgs behind the big immigration protests in spring 2006.

The press release is inexplicably not up on the website yet. But here’s a quote:

The League of United Latin American Citizens condemns the unnecessary worksite raids that took place last week at six Swift & Co. meatpacking plants. Over 1,300 employees were arrested and families were separated from their children in the towns of Greeley, Colorado; Grand Island, Nebraska; Cactus, Texas; Hyrum, Utah; Marshalltown, Iowa; and Worthington, Minnesota.

“We demand a halt to further immigration raids unless the government demonstrates that a particular arrest is necessary to protect public safety or for national security,” said LULAC National President Rosa Rosales. “The manner in which the raids were conducted has caused psychological harm to the immigrants and their families. LULAC is working with the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice to investigate possible civil rights violations based on reports that Latinos were treated unfairly during the raids. We must enforce our laws in a humane manner that balances our economic and security needs with our national values.”

LULAC plans to challenge any violations of the workers constitutional rights in court. We have joined with other national Hispanic organizations, including MALDEF, NALEO, NCLR and the National Hispanic Bar Association in sending letters to U.S. Secretary Michael Chertoff urging for a temporary halt on the raids. There is concern that some arrested in Minnesota were denied access to an attorney in violation of federal law. Of the1, 200 individuals arrested only 65 have criminal charges pending against them. The rest have been placed into administrative proceedings.

Might want to learn more about that alphabet of acronyms — If you don’t know much about these organizations, you will know more in the next 5-10 years. Anyway, the release goes on to urge Congress to um, do something about immigration. Soon-like. That is unlikely to help those families in a timely enough way. How about some action right now?

On a side note, the Unapologetic Mexican has some good advice from an African-American (Marcus Reeves of TellSpin) to his Latino brothers and sisters. My favorite part?

Also, nip that division along dark/light complexions in the bud. Don’t think folks aren’t listening when, for instance, non-Dominicans call Dominicans “the niggers of the Latin world,” or say that Mexicans are lowest on the Latin totem pole. In the mainstream’s eye, a nigger can be a spic, but all spics are niggers (you just got off the slave ships a little early).

My final piece of advice has to do with politics. In the event of a fight for civil or human rights in this country, don’t let the media pick your leaders. I bring up this point because when you become the largest minority group, things will prove to be interesting. With your numbers rising in states like California, the minorities (Latinos, blacks, and Asians) become the majority — and New York, Texas, and Florida are soon to follow. When the “majority” starts to feel the squeeze, look out for the backlash and the slipping away of rights and services. After you start voicing your discontent, the media will pick a moderate figure from your group — someone who has no interest and no connection to your angst — to quote and put in the spotlight.

Take it from folks who know.

Cross-posted at MyDD

Ain’t I a Woman?

Sojourner Truth

Welcome to Sista Scola in what is becoming Woman Weekend at MyDD. I am Woman, hear me blog. Feel the Femininity. Of course, I too am Jerome Armstrong in reality. It’s sort of like Eddie Murphy in the Nutty Professor. I find inspiration for the character of “Jill” in my big butt and bad attitude.

Please Note: This will be my last MyDD post until 2007. In the meantime, I lift a frosty glass of soy egg nog (or as I like to call it — “snog”) to you and wish you the happiest of possible holidays.

Lead Story –

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) rounds up Hispanic workers using racial profiling in TX leaving at least 400 child citizens without parents. Just in time for Feliz Navidad. Latina Lista, MigraMatters, Pachacutec @ FireDogLake, and Atrios have the story. I’ll let the Unapologetic Mexican guest-blogging at PatriotBoy have the last bitter, satirical word: I Pack the Meat That Todo El Mundo Eats

Congressional Black Caucus Members This Week –

* The Washington Post writes a love letter this week to the most powerful black legislator ever: Prometheus 6 and others comment on Charlie Rangel’s (co-founder of the Congressional Black Caucus) “awesome” profile.

* Dollar Bill Jefferson does *not* re-join Rangel on the Ways and Means committee despite inexplicable appeals from the CBC. (Jack and Jill Politics)

* According to the Washington Times, Nancy Pelosi met with incoming CBC chair Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D-MI) who urged Pelosi to address the astonishing lack of diversity in Hill staffers. Among thousands of staffers, the Times reports that only about 50 minority staffers of any race can be found in Capitol Hill offices.

According to a running joke one House staffer shared with The Times, “the only people who hire blacks and Hispanics around here are blacks, Hispanics and Republicans.”

Umm. This — in a city with one of the most affluent, well-educated and diverse talent pool of minorities in the nation. Racism looks as racism does. More at Jack and Jill Politics.


Osama, Obama; Tomato, Tomahto — let’s call the whole thing off (SOTUblog). Photo credit: Eric Kleefeld

This Week in Holocaust Denial –

Wolf Blitzer dukes it out with professional racist David Duke over the Holocaust Denial Conference.
(Wonkette)

The Stormfront crowd of white supremacists online naturally rushes to Duke’s defense.

Duke defended his actions in calling Blitzer a Jewish extremist and an Agent of Zionism.

Poor David Duke: he can’t get no respect, I tells ya!

They make sure never to give my proper title of Dr. David Duke, as they almost always give the “Dr.” title in discussing Dr. Martin Luther King. Yet, by any standard, my doctoral degree is at least as legitimate as his. When they don’t like you they can pull out all the stops.

For the video and some comic relief, head on over to Gawker.

In Other News –

Keith Ellison’s religion is still under attack as one Republican says Muslims are unfit for office.

Ciro Beats Rodriguez due to a Latino backlash? AmericaBlog and Dos Centavos report.

Thought Asian-Americans were being overly sensitive in slamming Rosie O’Donnell for her “Ching Chong” comments? Well, check out this video from Japan that mimics/ridicules African-American sitcoms and pokes fun at Japanese adoption of American pop culture. They even have a “Good Times”-like theme song. WARNING: includes liberal use of the word “nigga”. It is almost too bizarre and racist to comprehend. Props: Terrence Says

Incoming Speaker Nancy Pelosi got called on the carpet for the astonishing lack of diversity seen in House offices. According to the Washington Times, Pelosi met with incoming CBC chair Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick (D-MI) who out the good word on her. Affirmative action ain’t dead yet apparently despite a certain referendum in Michigan. And here’s a place where it’s apparently needed.

From the article:

Despite the Democratic Party’s historical ties to minorities, Capitol Hill Republicans are said to have a better reputation for hiring minorities.

According to a running joke one House staffer shared with The Times, “the only people who hire blacks and Hispanics around here are blacks, Hispanics and Republicans.”

There are only about 50 minority staffers of any race on Capitol Hill among what must be thousands of employees. How is it that Republicans get it and Dems don’t? If Democratic representatives don’t reflect loyal African-American, Hispanic, Asian-American and Native American constituents in their hiring practices, are those constituents’ loyalties misplaced, after all? It is shameful and I am glad the CBC finally got the confidence to speak up about it.

I’m starting to like Kilpatrick! Mama don’t take no mess…


Who We Are

Cheryl Contee aka "Jill Tubman", Baratunde Thurston aka "Jack Turner", rikyrah, Leutisha Stills aka "The Christian Progressive Liberal", B-Serious, Casey Gane-McCalla, Jonathan Pitts-Wiley aka "Marcus Toussaint," Fredric Mitchell

Special Contributors: James Rucker, Rinku Sen, Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, Adam Luna, Kamala Harris

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