Black lives matter

  • The Police Aren't Part of Change in Chicago

    by Dan Berger

    A historian critiquing a recent book on Black Lives Matter argues that the political, fiscal and cultural influence of police is so broad that it's impossible to think of meaningful social reform in a society that includes modern police departments. 

  • What Has Black Lives Matter Achieved? A New Critique from the Left

    by Jay Caspian Kang

    Political scientist Cedric Johnson argues in a new book that protest movements have fixated on racial identity at the expense of making a broad critique of how policing defends an unequal and exploitative society and building a bigger coalition for change. Writer Jay Caspian Kang puts this argument in the context of debates about identity politics from the center to the left.

  • Tyre Nichols's Death and America's Systemic Failure

    by Peniel E. Joseph

    Nichols's killing, like other police killings, emphasizes the need for what W.E.B. DuBois called "abolition democracy," meaning the "eradication of the institutions, vestiges, and badges of racial slavery and new investments in Black citizenship and dignity." This is more than "reform." 

  • Refuse a Return to "Normalcy" after Police Killings

    by Austin McCoy

    Refusing to accept avoidable death as part of American life—from COVID or police violence—is the foundation of change. Americans need to organize a national day of mourning in the form of a work stoppage. 

  • A Bizarre War on Protest By Republican Judges

    "If protest leaders can be hauled into court — and potentially forced to pay out of their own pockets — for the actions of a single protest attendee, then no sensible person will organize a protest."

  • The Return of the Mass Protest

    by Elizabeth Hinton

    Although mass protests are far more peaceful than they were in the 1960s, reviving nonviolent direct action tactics associated with MLK, the police response to them has been more heavily armed and violent.

  • In Rittenhouse Trial, Language Matters

    by Felicia Angeja Viator

    Kyle Rittenhouse's trial evokes the 1943 "Zoot Suit Riots," when white vigilantes, including uniformed servicemen, beat Mexican American youth in Los Angeles and other cities. The courts contributed to exonerating the vigilantes by repeating the language of a moral panic that characterized the victims as "gangsters" and hoodlums.

  • Did Last Summer's BLM Protests Change Anything?

    by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

    A commission convened by the Mayor of Philadelphia exemplifies the American preference for symbolism over substance in recently proclaimed "racial reckonings." 

  • Black Lives Matter Misses the Point About Cuba

    by Jorge Felipe Gonzalez

    American activists who recognize the antiracist achievements of the revolutionary Cuban government miss the ways that that government's authoritarianism and more recent economic policies disproportionately harm Afro-Cuban people. 

  • George Floyd Changed The World of Athlete Activism

    by Carl Suddler

    The protests over George Floyd's murder involved Black athletes at a time when athletes are highly visible and broke with a decades-long tendency to steer clear of controversy.

  • What Obama Gets Wrong on 'Defund the Police'

    by Austin McCoy

    "If political budgets are moral documents, then divesting heavily from institutions that have the capacity to perpetuate harms is the moral thing to do."

  • Voting Trump Out Is Not Enough

    by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

    The results of the 2020 election show that the Democratic Party will fail unless it is willing to abandon a futile effort to woo Republicans to the center and embrace popular policies that meet the needs of Democratic constituents.