Race | KERA News

Race

KERA is covering the impact of race on a rapidly diversifying region – in education, poverty, the arts, the criminal justice system, health care, voting rights and other areas. We're also exploring the intersections between race, class, gender and identity.

Other coverage of race by KERA:

Here are the latest stories on race from KERA, the Texas Station Collaborative and NPR:

Dallas Southern Pride / Facebook

In late May, dozens of people gathered at a block party to drink, dance and do the limbo.

It was sort of a pre-party for the big party happening this weekend. A chance to celebrate being LGBTQ, and being black. It's Dallas Southern Pride's Juneteenth Unity Festival.

Stella Chavez

In late May, hundreds of mourners packed a church in the heart of the Dallas LGBTQ community to remember the life of Muhlaysia Booker. The transgender 22-year-old was shot and killed in May, her body found on a street in Far East Dallas.

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

The country's top young spellers battle next week in the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Last year’s champion, Karthik Nemmani, is from McKinney.

Updated at 1:10 p.m. ET

Lori Lightfoot officially became Chicago's first black female and openly gay mayor on Monday. She immediately laid out a four-point plan for safety, education, stability and integrity during her 40-minute inauguration speech.

County judges and voting groups say they're concerned an update to a sweeping voting bill could reduce the number of countywide polling places in minority communities – particularly in larger metropolitan areas in Texas.

More than 50 years after Unitarian Reverend James Reeb was murdered during the voting rights movement in Selma, two native Alabamians return to that city to expose the lies that kept his murder from being solved, and uncover a story about guilt, memory, and justice that says as much about America today as it does about the past.

Medicine continues to advance on many fronts, yet basic health care fails hundreds of women a year who die during or after pregnancy, especially women of color. Black mothers die at a rate that's 3.3 times greater than whites, and Native American or Alaskan Native women die at a rate 2.5 times greater than whites, according to a report out this week from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Teacher Njera Keith was walking into the Austin Public Library's Carver Branch with a 6-year-old student in February when they saw a male police officer patting down 13-year-old LaTashia Milligam. The teenager was handcuffed and had no shoes on.

Nearly 100 years ago, Congress passed a restrictive law that cut the overall number of immigrants coming to the United States and put severe limits on those who were let in.

Journalist Daniel Okrent says that the eugenics movement — a junk science that stemmed from the belief that certain races and ethnicities were morally and genetically superior to others — informed the Immigration Act of 1924, which restricted entrance to the U.S.

The 1903 Confederate monument at the south entrance to the Capitol grounds claims that Confederate soldiers died for states' rights.
Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / The Texas Tribune

After nearly four hours of testimony and an emotional show of opposition from some legislators of color in the Texas Senate, the upper chamber approved Tuesday a bill that would expand protections for historical monuments.

In this July 21, 2015 file photo, Jeanette Williams places a bouquet of roses at a memorial for Sandra Bland near Prairie View A&M University, in Prairie View, Texas.
Associated Press

Cellphone video recorded by Sandra Bland, a black woman found dead in a Texas jail in 2015 following a confrontational traffic stop, shows for the first time her perspective as a white state trooper draws his stun gun and points it at close range while ordering her out of the car.

Round Rock High School senior Ahmir Johnson (left) and junior Addison Savors are among students of color who fear an expansion of the state's school marshal program will impact them more than others.
Juan Figueroa/The Texas Tribune

Ahmir Johnson knows what can happen when people who look like him get in law enforcement's crosshairs.

Drawing comics with characters of diverse races is a fraught task. From the earliest political cartoons up through last year's controversial depiction of Serena Williams by Australian artist Mark Knight, comics have a long history of exaggerating physical features in the service of racist stereotypes.

A lynching that took place 97 years ago in Abilene, Texas, was publicly recognized for the first time Saturday. A college student's curiosity was the first spark that made it happen.

East Texas Town Reflects On James Byrd Jr.'s Dragging Death Ahead Of Last Execution

Apr 23, 2019
Louvon Byrd Harris, 61, and Mylinda Byrd Washington, 66, hold up photographs of their brother James Byrd Jr. in Houston. James Byrd Jr. was the victim of what is considered to be one of the most gruesome hate crimes in recent Texas history.
Associated Press

A technology company was almost ready to bring up to 300 new jobs to Jasper, Texas, but in the final stages of recent negotiations, a potential deal-breaker emerged: the community's history as the place where three white men dragged a black man behind a pickup, killing him.

A researcher has discovered the identity of the last-known survivor of the trans-Atlantic slave trade in the United States.

Redoshi, later given the slave name Sally Smith, was kidnapped at the age of 12 from Benin in West Africa, in 1860. She was sold into slavery, making the journey to Alabama on the Clotilde, the last-known slave ship to arrive in the U.S.

Updated Wednesday at 8:35 a.m. ET

Lori Lightfoot has won Chicago's mayoral election, which capped a historic campaign between two African-American women who branded themselves as progressive and independent in a city known for its political machine.

After eight years of rule by Rahm Emanuel — a centrist Democrat who previously was a White House chief of staff and congressman — the results of Tuesday's balloting mean Chicago will now be led by a mayor who has never held elected office.

Updated at 2:58 p.m. ET

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is suing social media giant Facebook for allegedly violating the Fair Housing Act.

HUD says Facebook does so by "encouraging, enabling and causing housing discrimination" when it allows companies that use their platform to improperly shield who can see certain housing ads.

Jennifer Eberhardt has been interested in issues of race and bias since she was a child.

The African-American Stanford University psychology professor — and author of a new book called Biased -- grew up in an all-black neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio. Then, one day, Eberhardt's parents announced the family was moving to the Cleveland suburb of Beachwood. When Eberhardt arrived there, she told NPR's Ailsa Chang, she noticed something strange: She could no longer tell people's faces apart.

The view of the new Holocaust and Human Rights Museum of from Houston Street in downtown Dallas.
Bill Zeeble / KERA News

When the new Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum makes its debut in September, it'll feature some powerful and emotional displays.

Miriam Pratt was five years old when Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968. She remembers that after her father, Seattle Urban League leader Edwin Pratt, found out, he paced back and forth in his bedroom.

"He was emotional," Pratt's daughter tells Jean Soliz, her godmother, at StoryCorps. "I had never seen him like that."

Nine months later, her father would suffer the same fate. On a snowy night in 1969, Edwin was shot in his home, while Miriam and her mother, Bettye, were inside.

Today, ethnic studies is an accepted part of academia. Many if not most college students have taken a course or two. But 50 years ago, studying the history and culture of any people who were not white and Western was considered radical. Then came the longest student strike in U.S. history, at San Francisco State College, which changed everything.

The groundwork was laid for the strike a couple of years before, when black students organized to press for a black studies department and the admission of more black students.

Beto O’Rourke is running for the Democratic presidential nomination among a field of candidates that includes six women and five people of color, so far.

The enslaved man's name was Renty. His image adorns the cover of a Harvard publication that the university sells for $40.

Tamara Lanier says "Papa Renty" is the patriarch of her family. And in a lawsuit filed Wednesday, she says Harvard is using those photos without permission — and in so doing, profiting from photos taken by a racist professor determined to prove the inferiority of black people.

The U.S. Supreme Court signaled strongly on Wednesday that it is likely to rule for a death row inmate in Mississippi who was prosecuted six times for the same crime by a prosecutor with a history of racial bias in jury selection.

The arguments, more passionate and fact-filled than usual, also had a surprise ending when Justice Clarence Thomas posed a question — the first time in three years.

A group of civil rights and faith leaders are demanding a meeting with FBI Director Christopher Wray in the wake of the New Zealand terror attacks that killed at least 50 people as they prayed in mosques. The killer was a white nationalist who named President Trump as an inspiration in his online racist screed.

The groups want the FBI to address "the threat to public safety" and to their communities "by white nationalist violence."

Charlottesville city government was upended after a woman was killed and others injured in a car attack by a white supremacist in 2017. White nationalists had targeted Charlottesville for a "Unite The Right Rally" after the Virginia town decided to take down a Confederate statue, part of its reckoning with a fraught racial history.

Updated at 3:57 p.m. ET

After years of criticism and multiple lawsuits alleging that Facebook engaged in discrimination by allowing advertisers to select which users could see their ads, the social media giant announced it will make changes to its ad platform by the end of the year.

Authorities are looking into whether the suspect in last week's terror attack on two mosques in New Zealand was inspired by an emerging, European-based breed of white nationalism. The identitarian movement, formed in France in 2016, broadly believes that white people in Europe and North America are being displaced by non-European immigrants.

The Southern Poverty Law Center says that it has fired Morris Dees, one of its founders. The civil rights nonprofit, based in Montgomery, Ala., is well-known for its tracking of hate groups and its Teaching Tolerance program.

Dees co-founded the SPLC in 1971. The organization had $450 million in assets in 2017, according to a tax filing.

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