Read the keystone essay – Racism in America – White Supremacy

free-market ideology, racism

Recently Noted – challenging views of Justice Clarence Thomas – the intractable nature of white racism

October 15, 2019
A challenging take on the state of racism in the US. Harvard sociologist Orlando Patterson reviews books on Clarence Thomas and his views on countering intractable white racism.
education, inequality, racism

Recently Noted – busing, re-segregation, white supremacy

July 17, 2019
The recent controversies surrounding Joe Biden’s anti- school busing collaborations with racist politicians from the south has for the moment aroused new comment on segregated America. The New York Times published an excellent review of the history of school desegregation by Nikole Hannah-Jones, “It Was Never About Busing: Court-ordered desegregation worked. But white racism made it hard to accept.” As the article notes the yellow school bus has been in use for almost a hundred years. —>> read more –>>
family, inequality, justice/jails, racism, video-movies-podcasts

Evicted – the book and the exhibition

evicted press photo
April 3, 2019
Eviction from home is a regular feature of life for the poor and working class, more so for black and brown people. The civil justice system works with the same imbalance of power as the criminal system. Based on the book Evicted by Matthew Desmond.

White Affirmative Action – Martin Luther King in 1968

Who benefits from affirmative action?
May 13, 2018
White Affirmative Action – Martin Luther King in 1968 In recent years scholars and activists have begun to point out how white privilege is supported by many decades of government action that affirmatively transfers money and resources to whites while explicitly denying the same support to African-Americans.1 To my knowledge Martin Luther King never used the phrase “white affirmative action”, but in his March 31, 1968 speech at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC, “Remaining —>> read more –>>


  1. We have written about this phenomenon here regularly - more here:
  2. King, Martin Luther. Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution | The Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute. Accessed 13 May 2018.
  3. Listen to the speech here:
justice/jails, racism

Mass Incarceration – The New Jim Crow – Michelle Alexander

New JIm Crow book cover
March 7, 2018
Mass incarceration, largely through the War on Drugs, combined with white racism has produced a catastrophe for African Americans. It is hard to imagine that if young whites, despite being no more likely to offend drug laws than blacks, were subjected to these laws that we would have seen a sharp reaction from the white majority. Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow is important reading and a call to action.
healthcare, justice/jails, racism

Opioids and White Privilege – Lock’em Up vs. Treatment

December 12, 2017
Opioids and White Privilege The arrival of opioids as a national concern might focus your attention on the role of drug companies, doctors, and hospitals in creating this new addiction path. In the October 30 New Yorker Patrick Radden Keefe provides a through introduction to this in his piece, “The Family That Built an Empire of Pain: The Sackler dynasty’s ruthless marketing of painkillers has generated billions of dollars—and millions of addicts”. But taking another —>> read more –>>


empire, racism, recently noted

Thanksgiving – a bit of a corrective history telling and turkey adaptation

November 22, 2017
Corrective History The NYTimes posted a bit of Turkey Day corrective history: “Most Everything You Learned About Thanksgiving Is Wrong” By MAYA SALAM “The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth,” from 1914, by Jennie Augusta Brownscombe borrowed from NYTimes Adaptive Turkeys The Trump pardoned two turkeys yesterday at the White House. But, no surprise for us here in Columbia County, wild turkeys are doing just fine. Once again the NYTimes, ever on spot for trending issues, has an article —>> read more –>>
racism, recently noted

Recently Noted – 1930s Redlining and Segregation Today

August 29, 2017
More evidence that today’s segregated America didn’t just happen out of individual choices and preferences. The 1930s redlining of neighborhoods by the Home Owners’ Loan Corp, a New Deal housing agency, has had long term effects of segregating people.

Recently Noted – More White Affirmative Action

August 24, 2017
The 8/24/2017 New York Times featured a lengthy well researched study, “Even With Affirmative Action, Blacks and Hispanics Are More Underrepresented at Top Colleges Than 35 Years Ago”  demonstrates that affirmative action for whites that began during the Jim Crow era and continued during the post-WWII boom in education persists to this day.
politics, racism

Trump, Charlottesville, and Presidential Blinders to White Terrorism

August 15, 2017
Viewed from a bit longer lens of history this reaction to white supremacist terrorism fits in very well with the lengthy history of Presidents, Congress, and the judicial branch turning a blind eye to white terrorism used as a tool to oppress African Americans during the so-called Jim Crow era.
racism, recently noted

Recently Noted – “Making Affirmative Action White Again”

August 13, 2017
Ira Katznelson (see my earlier post “Affirmative Action for Whites – began in the 1930s”) wrote a brief opinion piece in the 8/13/2017 NYTimes, “Making Affirmative Action White Again” that encapsulates the real history of affirmative action for whites.
racism, recently noted

Recently Noted – about racism

August 2, 2017
New Trump focus on race reminds us, “All of the liberal praise for civil rights has produced no results over these six decades excepting the ritualized celebration of African American History Month. This is so embedded in our calendar that even Trump issued another executive order announcing it.”

White Affirmative Action Seen Through Income Gap

July 30, 2017
So, despite the apparent legal victories for civil rights of this year, America remains as segregated in housing, education, and jobs as ever. The preferential treatment of whites that became embedded in the government and private sector in the 1930s continues on to this day.
books, racism

Affirmative Action For Whites – began in the 1930s

July 17, 2017
Segregated America didn’t happen by chance nor by choice of the victims. Consistent white supremacist government action supported by private institutions created the segregation that persists and flourishes in the 21st century.

New Orleans, Mayor Landrieu, and the Future of Race in America

July 13, 2017
On Friday 5/19/17 Mayor Mitch Landrieu gave a powerful speech about the need to deny the falsifications of history that are those statues and to embrace the phrase, e pluribus unum, from many we are one. The speech is well worth listening to.
books, racism

Creating Segregated America in the 20th Century – Government in Action

July 12, 2017
Government, Federal, state and local took affirmative actions to set up and sustain segregation that is clearly unconstitutional and illegal. The de jure nature of the history then puts the burden on the government, our government, to remedy the situation. 

Slavery in Hudson and nearby – continued

June 18, 2017
It is clear that though slavery in the North was not the dominant economic engine that was true of the South, slavery was present and visible on a day-to-day basis.
books, racism

Slavery in Hudson and Columbia Cty NY

June 14, 2017
Notices of runaways slaves from the Hudson River Valley. Many were notices from slave owners in Hudson and Columbia County dating roughly from 1795 to 1840. Northerners may think that slavery was a Southern institution, but this history casts a decidedly different picture.

White Privilege – White Racism

February 28, 2017
Borrowed from: James Baldwin pointed out repeatedly that racism is a white issue. In the US, only white people can end the 400 years of racism against black people. To that end there has been talk of coming to grips with white privilege. This would be an important first step for white people to engage in, to recognize their privileged state This can then lead to concrete efforts to undue the embedded racist structures —>> read more –>>
books, racism

Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black People in America from the Civil War to World War II

Slavery by Another Name by Blackmon
November 13, 2010
This book brings to light the extent to which the Jim Crow laws were in fact part of a totalitarian system of government that ruled the South for more than seventy five years. How these laws came to be called Jim Crow by historians instead of  “a system of racist oppression and exploitation” is a mystery. The fact that historians and school textbook writers  adopted this term,which is derogatory in its basis, points to a shameful lack of focus on —>> read more –>>
books, racism

The Warmth of Other Suns – Isabel Wilkerson

October 10, 2010
Isabel Wilkerson’s book, The Warmth of Other Suns – the epic story of America’s great migration, creates  whole new planes of awareness of our history. This book startled me to a new understanding of how encompassing and pervasive the Jim Crow laws and social rules of the South really were. Without much thinking on my part, I have always equated Jim Crow with images of separate water fountains, lunch —>> read more –>>

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. New York City, Random House 2010