Basic Black: A Look at Secure Communities; Race in the Classroom

Recent Episodes

A Basic Black Special: Race and Ferguson Beyond The Headlines

A Basic Black Special: Race and Ferguson Beyond The Headlines

Basic Black

Original broadcast date: August 21, 2014

It's been almost two weeks since 18 year old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Ferguson, MO police officer Darren Wilson, but the reverberations from police and protestors surrounding his death continue.   Brown's death was the fourth this summer in as many weeks in which an African American man was killed by law enforcement.  In a special conversation this week, Basic Black goes beyond the headlines to explore the racial, historical, and cultural underpinnings of the relationship of law enforcement to communities of color and the meaning of protest in a post-civil rights movement era.

 


Photo:  A man is moved by a line of police as authorities disperse a protest in Ferguson, Mo. early Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014. On Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014, a white police officer fatally shot Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, in the St. Louis suburb. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

 

"We Who Believe In Freedom:" 50 Years After Freedom Summer and the Civil Rights Act

"We Who Believe In Freedom:" 50 Years After Freedom Summer and the Civil Rights Act

Basic Black

June 6, 2014

Fifty years ago this summer, the modern civil rights movement was front and center on the nation's headlines, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law and Freedom Summer was in full swing in Mississippi.  But the struggle for racial equality, by law and in the voting booth, was from over and activists persisted in the fight often against systematic violent attacks including beating, arson, and murder.  This week on Basic Black we acknowledge the 50th anniversary of the pivotal events of that summer and examine its impact on contemporary movements for racial, social and economic quality.

 

(Program title inspiration: Ella Baker, 1964; photo: from the upcoming film, Freedom Summer, by Stanley Nelson)

Basic Black: Remembering Maya Angelou

Basic Black: Remembering Maya Angelou

Basic Black

May 30, 2014

This week on Basic Black-- we pause to remember Maya Angelou—cultural icon, global artist, and wise elder who died this week at the age of 86.  Angelou’s  first book, I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings became a bestseller 30 years ago.  We'll talk about her seminal works and later in the discussion, a conversation we hope Angelou would have appreciated, our favorite books and authors we're taking with us into the summer.

 

Author Maya Angelou delivers a tribute to South African Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu at the J. William Fulbright Prize for International Understanding Award Ceremony at the State Department in Washington, Friday, Nov. 21, 2008. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

 

Victory At Home & Abroad: Race in the U.S. Armed Services

Victory At Home & Abroad: Race in the U.S. Armed Services

Basic Black

May 23, 2014

From the valor of the 54th  Massachusetts regiment, to the commanding presence of General Colin Powell, to the overwhelmingly African American, Asian, and Latino volunteer troops --  people of color have had a complicated experience in America’s military.  Tonight on Basic Black, a Memorial Day conversation about historical and contemporary experience of people of color and serving in the US armed forces.


 

(Photo source: Army OneSource)

Basic Black: Brown v Board and the Return of Segregation?

Basic Black: Brown v Board and the Return of Segregation?

Basic Black

Original broadcast date: May 16, 2014


This week on Basic Black, we take a look at the lasting impact of Brown v. Board of Education as we approach the 60th Anniversary of the Supreme Court decision in the case.

Additional reading: The Pro Publica Series, Segregation Now.


We'll also turn our lens on Nigeria in the wake of the kidnapping of over 300 schoolgirls. The crime has attracted international attention including rallies held here in the Boston area and prompted US intervention in an effort to find the girls.

 

 

 

 

Top photo:  Students, parents and educators rally at the Supreme Court in Washington, Tuesday, May 13, 2014, for the 60th anniversary Brown v. Board of Education decision that struck down the “separate but equal” concept established under Plessy v. Ferguson that kept schools segregated. (AP Photo)

 

Basic Black - Affirmative Action: Slippery Slope Or Uphill Battle...?

Basic Black - Affirmative Action: Slippery Slope Or Uphill Battle...?

Basic Black

May 2, 2014

This week on Basic Black, we take a look at the recent Supreme Court ruling upholding Michigan's ban on affirmative action as a consideration in admissions to the state's public universities. The majority and dissent opinions mirrored the national debate on achieving racial diversity in higher education, but we'll discuss how that debate intensified with the backdrop of Donald Sterling's audiotaped disdain for the company of "black people," Cliven Bundy's remarks on the merits of slavery, and African American students at Harvard creating the "ITooAmHarvard" campaign.


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9/14/14 8:00 AM
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9/14/14 4:00 PM
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(Originally broadcast May 18, 2012)

The Secure Communities program is now officially in place in Massachusetts, despite objections from many state officials, including Governor Deval Patrick. Under Secure Communities, fingerprints from local jails are matched against a federal immigration database; Immigration and Customs Enforcement then the local jail detain people they think are here illegally. Supporters of the program see it as a tool in the fight against crime while opponents charge that the program encourages ethnic profiling.

Later in the show, we turn the discussion to race in education. In Boston, three City Councillors are pushing for more teachers of color and the integration of black and Latino studies into the curriculum. Basic Black poses the question: does the race of a teacher matter in learning the fundamentals? On a national level, last week there was a huge controversy about an article written in the Chronicle of Higher Education which advocated for elimination of Black Studies as a course of study in colleges and universities; the author described black studies as "left-wing victimization clap-trap." 6,500 petition signatures later, the author was fired. But what were the real lessons of this episode?

Panelists:
- Latoyia Edwards, anchor, New England Cable News
- Phillip Martin, senior reporter, 89.7 WGBH Radio
- Kim McLarin, assistant professor of writing, literature and publishing, Emerson College
- Alejandra St. Guillen, executive director, Oiste
- Tito Jackson, Boston City Councillor, District 7

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