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Basic Black: Portraits of Purpose

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Education | Politics

January 30, 2015

The pictures and stories of Bostonians whose stories have been sidelined are now highlighted in a book more than 20 years in the making. Now in 107 portraits coupled with narrative profiles, the contributions of some notable Bostonians of color are preserved for all time. The book is Portraits of Purpose: A Tribute to Leadership and we’re joined by photographer Don West and writer, Kenneth Cooper.

 

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Basic Black: Baltimore... From The Streets To The Stage

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Politics

May 8, 2015

This week Basic Black opens with a follow-up look at the events in Baltimore with a conversation about black leadership and variations on the “blue wall of silence.”  Later in the show: as tensions in Baltimore increased, it was the White House Correspondents Dinner which included a few jokes on the state of race relations, that took center stage in many media outlets; and just after the state of emergency in Baltimore was lifted, the comedy duo Key and Peele premiered a sketch called “Negrotown”… we ask, when is the right time for satire?

 



Photo: (Left) Scene from “Negrotown” Key & Peele, Comedy Central.  (Right) Protesters demonstrate as a curfew imposed in the aftermath of rioting following Monday's funeral for Freddie Gray goes into effect Friday, May 1, 2015, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

 

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Basic Black: Baltimore... From The Streets To The Stage

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Politics

May 8, 2015

This week Basic Black opens with a follow-up look at the events in Baltimore with a conversation about black leadership and variations on the “blue wall of silence.”  Later in the show: as tensions in Baltimore increased, it was the White House Correspondents Dinner which included a few jokes on the state of race relations, that took center stage in many media outlets; and just after the state of emergency in Baltimore was lifted, the comedy duo Key and Peele premiered a sketch called “Negrotown”… we ask, when is the right time for satire?

 



Photo: (Left) Scene from “Negrotown” Key & Peele, Comedy Central.  (Right) Protesters demonstrate as a curfew imposed in the aftermath of rioting following Monday's funeral for Freddie Gray goes into effect Friday, May 1, 2015, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

 

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Basic Black: Next Generation Politics and Press

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Politics

November 6, 2015

This week on Basic Black we look at the seismic shift in the Boston City Council as two challengers ousted the city’s longest serving councilors. One of the winners was Councilor-Elect Andrea Joy Campbell who will represent District 4, having beaten Charles Yancey, who held the seat for 32 years. Also, we discuss the 50th anniversary of the Bay State Banner and the relevance of ethnic newspapers today.

 

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Basic Black After The Broadcast: 50 Years of The Bay State Banner

Arts & Culture | Black Boston

November 6, 2015

After the broadcast the conversation turned to a discussion of the 50th anniversary of the Bay State Banner and the relevance of ethnic newspapers today.

 

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Basic Black: Next Generation Politics and Press

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Politics

November 6, 2015

This week on Basic Black we look at the seismic shift in the Boston City Council as two challengers ousted the city’s longest serving councilors. One of the winners was Councilor-Elect Andrea Joy Campbell who will represent District 4, having beaten Charles Yancey, who held the seat for 32 years. Also, we discuss the 50th anniversary of the Bay State Banner and the relevance of ethnic newspapers today.

 

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Basic Black - Flint: Michigan's Hurricane Katrina?

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Health | Politics

January 29, 2016

This week on Basic Black, an environmental and public health crisis one year in the making.?In Flint, Michigan, residents are still reeling from the impact of the foul smelling brown water pumped into their homes through corroded lead lined pipes. Now more than a year after the first complaints from residents and warnings from independent experts, President Obama has ordered federal aid for Flint. Many are comparing the failure of local leadership to the devastating inadequate response to Hurricane Katrina. Are people or color and the poor most likely to be victims of environmental racism?

 

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Basic Black - Flint: Michigan's Hurricane Katrina?

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Health | Politics

January 29, 2016

This week on Basic Black, an environmental and public health crisis one year in the making.?In Flint, Michigan, residents are still reeling from the impact of the foul smelling brown water pumped into their homes through corroded lead lined pipes. Now more than a year after the first complaints from residents and warnings from independent experts, President Obama has ordered federal aid for Flint. Many are comparing the failure of local leadership to the devastating inadequate response to Hurricane Katrina. Are people or color and the poor most likely to be victims of environmental racism?

 

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Basic Black: Ebola and Race | Policing Communities of Color

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Health | Politics

October 10, 2014

This week on Basic Black: perceptions and realities on two fronts. First, we take a look at Ebola and race.  With the death of Thomas Duncan attention has focused even more closely on his initial and subsequent contact with Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas; although Mr. Duncan received round-the-clock care once admitted to the hospital, his case has raised questions about the relationship of communities of color, the poor, and the uninsured to the US health care system.  Also, the ACLU of Massachusetts released a report charging the Boston Police Department with racial bias, a charge the Department vigorously rejects, pointing to advances made in the last few years under the leadership of Commissioner William Evans.  But beyond the report, which only uses data from 2007-2010, how should we look at Boston's policing of communities of color in the context of the national conversation that sprung from events in Ferguson?

 

Photo: Licensed clinician Roseda Marshall, of Liberia, disrobes after a simulated training session on Monday, Oct. 6, 2014, in Anniston, Ala. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

 

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Empowering Women & Girls: Nicole Roberts Jones

Arts & Culture | Black Boston | Health | Politics

by Talia Whyte


Nicole Roberts Jones
was the mistress of ceremonies at Boston's 43rd annual Martin Luther King Day Breakfast.  As the old adage goes, behind every great man is an even greater woman.  Coretta Scott King played a vital role as Dr. King’s wife and organizing partner.  There were many other women who had participated in the civil rights movement, but unlike Mrs. King, Betty Shabazz and Rosa Parks, their accomplishments have been given little attention.

Ella Baker, Septima Poinsette Clark, Fannie Lou Hamer and Vivian Malone Jones are all unsung heroines from that era.  Baker was a longtime organizer for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) who worked behind the scenes.  Because she was neither a man nor a minister, she was not seriously considered to become the head of the organization.  Clark, better known as the “queen mother” of the civil rights movement, was an educator who played a role in a legal victory that would allow blacks to become principals in public schools in Charleston, South Carolina.  Hamer was a Mississippi sharecropper, who was beaten and jailed in 1962 for trying to register to vote.  She co-founded the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party and spoke at the 1964 Democratic National Convention.  Jones defied Gov. George Wallace by becoming one of the first black students to enroll at the University of Alabama in 1963.

And there were countless other women, who are unknown, but worked tirelessly cooking meals and cleaning up after rallies.  These women should be the main role models for today’s black women, not stars on reality shows.   

While no woman gave a speech at the 1963 March on Washington, it seems like their accomplishments are now being recognized.  Myrlie Evers-Williams delivered the invocation at President Obama’s inauguration – the first ever done by a woman and layperson.

“There’s a Chinese saying, ’Women hold up half the world,” said former NAACP chairman Julian Bond. “In the case of the civil rights movement it’s probably three-quarters of the world.”

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