Ron Briley: We certainly have some major problems that need to be addressed, but as a retired baby boomer, I find the America of today to be a vast improvement over the society into which I was born and raised.
Steve Hochstadt: In 2011, the Republican strategy has been crowned with total success. They have managed to make the US government into a laughing stock, a global symbol of incompetence. Public confidence in government is at an all-time low.
David Love: The GOP cannot have it both ways. They cannot take a stand in favor of hate groups—white supremacists, neo-confederates, and homophobes—and take offense when their critics call them out for it.
Tracy Emblem: Compare President Truman’s proclamation of equal opportunity and treatment in the military to today’s efforts to repeal the 1993 “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy imposed by Congress. This discriminatory practice is tantamount to silent segregation of gay and lesbian personnel and puts them at continued risk to lose their jobs and all of their benefits.
Michele Waslin: Today, most Americans are familiar with the Brown v. Board of Education decision. However, the link between Mexican-Americans and African-Americans in the struggle for desegregation is not well known. The Mendez case and the relationship between the two cases is an important piece of U.S. history that deserves to be more widely acknowledged.
Mary L. Dudziak: The no-change-during-wartime argument is an example of conventional thinking about war and American society. “Wartime” is imagined to be a temporary condition. It is a special kind of time. Wartime, by definition, is preceded and followed by “peacetime.” American history is thought to consist of the movement from peacetime to wartime and back again. In this conceptualization, wartimes always comes to an end.
Carl Matthes: Desmond Tutu, the former Anglican Archbishop of Cape Town and a Nobel Peace Price winner, has lent his name to the fight against homophobia saying, “Homophobia is a ‘crime against humanity’ and ‘every bit unjust’ as apartheid.” Brad Pitt, in a 2007 Vanity Fair interview of Tutu, remarked, “So certainly discrimination has no place in Christianity. There’s a big argument going on in America right now, on gay rights and equality.”
The death of preeminent historian and race scholar, John Hope Franklin, and his life-long contribution to helping America understand the legacies of slavery and racial vestiges that have been carried forward, is a true loss. Franklin helped those who followed his work to understand that race is still the most entrenched socio-economic-political issue of our […]
In the summer of 2006 I attended the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute at the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute at Harvard. One of the guest presenters was 95-year-old Johnnie Carr, the woman who took over the Montgomery Improvement Association in 1956 after the successful Montgomery bus boycott when Martin Luther King, Jr. went […]
The Presidency aspirations of Barack Obama have caused a renewed discussion on race in America. The prospect of a black President has cast America in a different light throughout the world — as demonstrated by Obama’s highly successful trip to the Middle East and Europe last week.
The election of Barack Obama as President of the United States will be viewed by many as accomplishing racial diversity’s last frontier. The politics of diversity carries a heavy stigma, particularly in the post-affirmative action era.