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Author: Reggie Jackson

Reggie Jackson: “Living While Black” shows what White Democrats can learn from lame-duck session

The lame-duck legislation session that came at the end of 2018, in which Wisconsin’s Republican lawmakers placed restrictions on the incoming Democratic governor and Attorney General, is instructive by its example. I have listened to the complaints of white Democrats who speak of the unfairness of this “power grab” as they call it. “How dare Governor Scott Walker and the Republican led Legislature change the rules? Don’t they understand the un-democratic nature of what they’ve done? What about the will of the people who voted Tony Evers and Josh Kaul into office?” For those of us in the non-white...

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The Chicken or the Egg: How Changing Racist Attitudes Leads to Changing Racist Institutions

One of the outstanding paradoxes humans have discussed for years is the question of what came first, the chicken or the egg? If chickens lay eggs, and hatched eggs lead to chickens, which came first? No one knows. No one will ever know. It will be debated forever. Likewise, we regularly discuss which needs to change first in our society, racist attitudes or racist institutions? Racism has been a part of the United States of America since the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock in 1607. The attitudes toward the indigenous First Nations people of the so-called New World are...

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Nazi-saluting students in Baraboo reflect the forever war that profits from white power

”We even got the black kid to throw it up.” – Baraboo Wisconsin School District @GoBaraboo parody account Last May a group of about 60 Baraboo High School students from the senior class of 2019 stood in front of the Sauk County Courthouse building to pose for prom pictures. It should have been just another innocuous photo of high school students. But something made this particular picture stand out. About 30 of the students were giving the Nazi “Sieg Heil” salute. The photographer has claimed they were not. The photo has gone viral and brought attention to the school...

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Pipe Bombs, synagogue shooting, and the demise of civility in America by angry white men

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” – Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Letter From a Birmingham Jail I write this essay with a heavy heart. I have had to console so many friends over these past few years that suffered tremendously due to hate-related gun violence. There have been too many unnecessary deaths because of hatred that it makes me want to cry. I saw close friends from the Jewish community shed tears...

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When the Skin You’re In Is the Weapon They Fear

“You’ve got the words to change a nation, but you’re biting your tongue, you’ve spent a lifetime stuck in silence, afraid you’ll say something wrong.” – Emeli Sande Hollywood is finally getting over its fear of telling the story of black America honestly. I sat in the majestic Oriental Theater on October 10 as part of a multi-racial, multi-generational audience, to see a film about race. It was surreal. “The Hate U Give” was an extraordinary film that took the audience on a journey into the lives of African Americans and our fraught relationship with the criminal justice system....

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Race Trumps Common Sense: The segregated mindset of the White Racial Frame

Common Sense: the ability to use good judgment in making decisions and to live in a reasonable and safe way. As Americans we take pride in being very sensible people and think that most of us are in the same boat as everyone else when it comes to common sense. Those lacking common sense are see, as oddballs. I have proposed for years that common sense is not very common. My contention is that we make many decisions based on our sense of belonging to a specific group. We try our best to do what benefits the group we...

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