In Defense of Ethnic Studies and American History

Five generations of a family born into slavery on a South Carolina plantation

Simon Balto: Amidst the recent assaults on ethnic studies in Arizona and beyond that propagate a myth that such programs are divisive and exclusionary, I now find myself seeking to defend and justify their importance, and to wrestle with their place in American history.

Toward a More Complete MLK Day

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Simon Balto: King understood that the problems of America involved much more than racial inequality, and—in answer to LBJ’s question—what he in fact wanted was “a radical redistribution of power.”

Fred Hampton, Barack Obama, and the American Urban Poor

Fred Hampton

Hampton was fond of extending the traditional Panther slogan of “Power to the People” to an explicitly inclusive level: “All Power to all people. White Power to White people; Brown Power to Brown people; Yellow Power to Yellow people; Black Power to Black people.”

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