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Author: Op Ed

Rejecting Integration: The federal government is abandoning its responsibilities to ensure fair housing

In recent days, President Trump has indicated that he will likely retract a federal requirement that cities and counties act to promote residential integration and equal housing opportunities. Such a move would be unacceptable under any circumstances, but it is particularly repugnant that in the midst of a national crisis, the President is using racist, inflammatory language to undermine civil rights and tacitly endorse segregation. In remarks on July 16, the President stated that pro-integrative policies mean that “your home will go down in value and crime rates will rapidly rise,” and that suburbs will “go to hell.” As...

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Targeted by Police: How law enforcement tries to criminalize Milwaukee’s Black Activists

In this moment of completely valid social unrest, we’ve seen some people respond skeptically to police violence: Didn’t she resist arrest? Weren’t they breaking the law by marching in the street? What did he do to deserve being shot? Perhaps because people want to believe that we live in a just world with fair-minded authorities, there is a tendency to automatically give police — and their version of events — the benefit of the doubt. But that benefit of the doubt is rarely extended to the people who police accuse of committing crimes. Many people assume that the police...

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Poisoned Philanthropy: The dangers of becoming the “white moderate” that MLK warned us about

I have been thinking of George Floyd’s brutal murder by the police and of the protests happening in Minneapolis, nationwide, and globally. I am at a loss on what to do and how to support our Black friends and colleagues, and family members who have constantly suffered under the pervasive violence of white supremacy and racism. I don’t know what to say. I don’t have any encouraging words for you at this moment. I am just angry and sad. And to be honest, I am also frustrated by the nonprofit sector. I love our field and the people in...

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Zeynab Ali: If you weren’t black, maybe you’d still be alive

Originally launched in 2014 as her blog “Informed,” Zeynab Ali recently rebranded her personal communications platform as Zeynabula. As an author and community advocate, the Kenyan-born Somali resident of Milwaukee wanted to expand the topics she wrote about. In addition to her love of books, the platform offers Ali with the chance to express her ideas about philanthropy and a vision for establishing a more productive society. This essay was written recently, after protests began over the death of George Floyd. Her other work can be viewed at zeynabula.com “The systemic targeting of and use of unnecessary force against...

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Jack Davidson: An open letter to Milwaukee law enforcement on the “kettling” of peaceful protesters

Thugs. Bullies. Weasels. Morons. Cowards. This is an open letter to “the Police.” Specifically the Milwaukee Police Department, Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Department, and Wisconsin National Guard, regarding the “kettling” of protesters on Tuesday morning, June 2, but also to police in general regarding how we deal with civil unrest. I’m going to take some heat for this, and it has some harsh words, but I think I have to send it. Please read. Share if you like. Don’t shoot. My name is Jack Davidson. I am a 54-year-old white male resident of Milwaukee. I’m self-employed, I own a house,...

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Milwaukee reflects America’s failed proxy war to fight racism and inspire social justice

The United States fought a costly proxy war against Russia and China in the small country of Vietnam. It cost billions of dollars, erased a generation, and left scars upon our national soul. One of the objectives of that conflict was to win the hearts and minds of the Vietnamese people. A similar and equally failed proxy war has also been fought in America for the past half century. And for all the billions of dollars spent, lives lost and damage done, we have not won the hearts and minds of our own people either. All the social programs...

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