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:

Capital Factory

Starting a successful business requires a great idea, paying customers and access to capital if you want it to grow. The business world is tough, but even tougher for people of color and women. Historically, they have a harder time securing business loans and investor funding needed to take their startup to the next level.

A new study conducted by researchers at Stanford, Harvard and the Census Bureau, finds that in 99 percent of neighborhoods in the United States, black boys earn less in adulthood than white boys who come from similar socioeconomic backgrounds. This undermines the widely-held belief that class, not race, is the most fundamental predictor of economic outcomes for children in the U.S.

Sherry Alvarez says she knew there was something different about her son since he was about 9 months old. Back then Sherry says his pediatrician told her there was nothing to worry about, " 'Boys are a little slower than girls, so let's just wait until his second birthday.' " We aren't using Sherry's son's name to protect his privacy.

By her son's second birthday, Sherry says she was getting desperate. She didn't know why he wasn't talking yet or showing affection like other kids. At 2 1/2, he was referred to Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

Russell Lee, Library of Congress / Wikimedia Commons

Along with the risks of poverty and unemployment during the Great Depression, Mexican immigrants and even U.S. citizens of Mexican descent faced an additional hazard: Around half a million of them were kicked out of the country to preserve jobs for white Americans.  

If you didn’t know this, it could be because it wasn’t covered the same way by every news outlet.

Stella M. Chávez / KERA News

A man dressed in gold and black blows a trumpet shell. A teenage boy beats on a drum. They’re part of a group that performs traditional Aztec dances.

On Saturday morning, they’re inside the gym at the Wesley-Rankin Community Center in West Dallas. Some of the kids watching may have seen these colorfully dressed dancers before, but few of them know what the dances mean.

Shutterstock

America has a habit of following trends that occur in one of its states: Texas.

People of color make nearly 40 percent of the U.S. population, and women make up more than half. But you couldn't guess that by looking at American journalists, according to a new report by the Women's Media Center.

Stella M. Chavez / KERA News

A Plano City Council member generated headlines – and controversy – a couple of weeks ago when he posted a video on his Facebook page, calling for a ban on Islam in schools. Tom Harrison later apologized.

Despite calls to resign, Harrison says he’s not stepping down. Many in Plano say the council member’s actions were a blow to the city’s Muslim community.

For immigrants, this past week has been a doozy: First, the United States Citizen and Immigration Services took the words "nation of immigrants" out of its mission statement. Then, the Supreme Court ruled that immigrants held in detention are not entitled to bail hearings.

Courtesy of UNT Health Science Center

Advancements in medicine have helped improve the overall health of Americans over the past several decades, but they haven’t benefited everyone.

Callie Richmond for The Texas Tribune

It's indisputable that Texas has a depressing voter turnout history.

Year after year, the state ranks near the bottom in electoral participation, with turnout dipping even lower during non-presidential elections.

Part 3 of a three-part series.

As Texas looks to reduce its maternal mortality rate, there is one aspect of the crisis that is going to be harder to solve: Black women are more likely to die while pregnant or after giving birth than women from other racial or ethnic groups.

Courtney Collins / KERA news

Until last month, West Dallas had just one brick-and-mortar bank out on the fringe of the neighborhood, near the interstate.

A new bank branch wants to build a relationship with the heart of the community: low- and middle-income families who've lived there for decades.

Shutterstock

In the era of U.S. slavery, it was illegal for African-Americans in many parts of the country — both enslaved and free — to learn to read and write.

But millions who were denied that right understood the power of education. By the late 19th century, there were dozens of black colleges in the United States.

City of Plano; Facebook

Plano City Council member Tom Harrison says he will not resign even though his colleagues have censured him. 

City of Plano; Facebook

Plano City Council has called a special meeting for noon Sunday to discuss the future of a council member who came under fire this week for his anti-Islam post on Facebook.

City of Plano; Facebook

A Plano City Council member has apologized for sharing a video on Facebook that he says "wrongfully implied I am anti-Muslim."

From Texas Standard.

Candidates all over the Lone Star State are pouring their hearts, souls and resources into their campaigns. The primaries in Texas are only three weeks away.

While resources are a major challenge for every candidate, that’s particularly true for those with little name recognition. Some organizations like Emily’s List and Annie’s List are making money available to the record number of female candidates running this year. but the money is not available to everyone.

GABRIEL CRISToVER PeREZ / KUT

In Texas, mothers are dying — and lawmakers and public health officials are trying to figure out why.

Lara Solt / KERA News special contributor

A new report out by the Southern Poverty Law Center finds American students don’t fully understand many facts about slavery and the role it played in U.S. history. The study also finds that educators aren't adequately teaching students about it.

Laura Skelding for The Texas Tribune

The State Board of Education is considering creating standards for an official Mexican-American studies high school course, after two failed attempts to approve a textbook for the subject.

Fifteen years ago, the Chicago Police Department started gathering information about gangs electronically. It was the next big thing at the time for police departments. The idea was to store gang intelligence in one centralized system.

"It allows us to reduce violent crime, to identify the most active gangs and gang members," says Michael Martin, a member of the the Midwest Gang Investigators Association who teaches at the National Gang Center based in Florida.

LinkedIn

A former board member of the Richardson Independent School District is suing the district.

David Tyson Jr. alleges that the district's at-large system violates the Voting Rights Act by denying “fair representation of African-Americans and other non-white voters.”

In December 1955, after Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala., bus to a white man, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. and other black ministers and community leaders organized a citywide bus boycott in protest. That part is well known.

Less well-known is the story of Georgia Gilmore, the Montgomery cook, midwife and activist whose secret kitchen fed the civil rights movement.

The annual MLK Jr. parade in downtown Fort Worth has been free of controversy, unlike the new event planned for Arlington.
Fort Worth Star-Telegram archives

The region-wide parade to celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday in Arlington has been canceled.

The City of Arlington declined to issue a permit for the event, after organizers "failed to meet event planning and security-related funding requirements," according to a statement from the city.

"The federal government must take bold action to address inequitable funding in our nation's public schools."

So begins a list of recommendations released Thursday by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, an independent, bipartisan agency created by Congress in 1957 to investigate civil rights complaints. Thursday's report comes after a lengthy investigation into how America's schools are funded and why so many that serve poor and minority students aren't getting the resources they say they need.

From Texas Standard.

Twenty-three percent of the students in Fort Worth ISD are black. But according to a recent report by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 62 percent of all girls suspended in the district last school year were African-American. Fort Worth ISD administrators are looking into why this is happening in their district.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

What was billed as a region-wide celebration of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., has drawn fire from local civil rights groups and community activists. They’re angry over the inclusion of Gov. Greg Abbott as an honorary grand marshal of the Toyota North Texas Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade & Celebration, which is scheduled for next Monday in Arlington.

Christopher Connelly / KERA News

There’s a new major at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth dedicated to shining a light on issues around race and ethnicity. It’s part of broader efforts at the university to attract and retain more students of color and improve the campus culture.

Illustration by Krystina Martinez / KERA News

2017 was a rollercoaster year for news, especially if you were a person of color, a transgender person, an immigrant, or a woman.

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