Essay Archive

No Real Angels in Hell: Police Violence, Black Lives and the White Obsession With Perfect Victims

It is increasingly apparent that white Americans hate the Constitution. Not all white people and not the entire Constitution of course; but certainly a frightening lot of us and some of the most important parts. We love the Second Amendment — at least in so far as it protects our right to bear arms, even [...]

Armed With a Loaded Footnote: How the Right Rationalizes Racial Disparity

Possibly the only thing worse than racism itself is the pseudo-intellectual way in which some seek to justify it. For instance, consider the standard conservative response to those of us who argue that the criminal justice system is the site of significant racialized unfairness. Whether the subject is racial profiling, stop-and-frisk rates, arrest rates, rates [...]

Still a Nazi After All These Years: The Return of David Duke (with Audio)

For so many reasons, I really didn’t want to have to write this. But here we go again. Twenty-six years after his first run for the U.S. Senate in Louisiana, lifelong white supremacist, Neo-Nazi and former Klansman David Duke has once again thrown his hat in the ring for the job. As tempting as it [...]

TwitterStorm on David Duke

Here is the Twitter storm I released on David Duke yesterday, after he announced he was running for the U.S. Senate again, in Louisiana. As most of you know, I got my start doing antiracism work in the fight against Duke in 1990 and 1991. This is just a brief and incomplete timeline of Duke’s [...]

What Does It Mean to Be Wrong For So Long? Reflections on Black Reality and White Delusion

Although there was no such thing as polling back then, I suspect that if you had asked a representative sample of Londoners in the early 1770s whether or not the American colonists were getting a fair shake from King George, most would have said yes. It is doubtful they would have thought much about any [...]

Criticism is Not Hatred, Deference is Not Love: Reflections on Policing and the Cult of Authority

At the risk of sounding preposterously trite, I love my daughters. I love them the same way my parents loved me, I suspect, and their parents loved them: unconditionally and forever. That said, I also see their flaws and shortcomings. They are teenagers after all and human beings, and their membership in both clubs provides [...]

BLAZE-ing Prattles: Reflections on White Rage and the Beauty of Black Truth

Perhaps it’s too easy. Indeed, it might even be considered a waste of valuable energy to respond to the childlike ventilations of Tomi Lahren. Oh wait, you’ve never heard of Tomi Lahren? That’s probably because the 23-year old host of her own show on Glenn Beck’s Blaze Network is the host of her own show [...]

Sorry For His Family…Moving On: Brief Reflections on the Passing of Antonin Scalia

While I revel in the death of no one, I cannot abide the hagiographic nonsense that is presently being offered by persons across the spectrum about how recently departed Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was “passionate” and brilliant, ad infinitum. There is nothing brilliant about putrescence, nothing insightful and worthwhile about venality posing as insight. [...]

White Denial: America’s Persistent and Increasingly Dangerous Pastime

This essay was written originally for CNN.com and can be found here. ______ There’s an old saying that it’s hard to know what you don’t know, the premise being that when you’re ignorant about something, you aren’t likely to realize your blind spots. But I’m not so sure. Sometimes, knowing what you don’t know just [...]

Kim Davis is No Rosa Parks (and Christian Hegemony is Not a Civil Right)

It is an axiom of modern American politics: whenever someone does something that you really don’t like, they are to be immediately analogized to Hitler. Conversely, when someone does something you support quite a bit, you are to proclaim them the modern day incarnation of Martin Luther King, Jr. Or at least Rosa Parks. Thus, [...]