race

Where We Live
9:00 am
Wed August 20, 2014

The Wheelhouse: It's Not Just Ferguson

Protests in Ferguson, MO after the fatal shooting of Michael Brown.
Lovesofbread Wikimedia Commons

With all eyes on Ferguson, Missouri, many people are also taking a step back to look at their own communities. What many of us see is a problem not restricted to Ferguson. Earlier this week, we had a conversation about urban policing and the militarization of police forces. 

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Urban Policing
1:06 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

New Haven Police Officer Responds to Ferguson Shooting

Shafiq Abdussabur is a police officer and author of A Black Man’s Guide to Law Enforcement in America.
Chion Wolf WNPR

The fatal shooting of unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown last week has led to a series of angry protests in Ferguson, Missouri. As some protests turned violent and police have implemented military tactics there, the issue of race and violence has once again come into the nation’s focus. 

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Missouri
5:53 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Ferguson Police Use Tear Gas, Flash Grenades To Disperse Protesters

Police arrest a demonstrator protesting the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson on Monday. At a news conference, President Obama called for calm. "Let's seek to heal rather than wound each other," he said.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue August 19, 2014 4:36 am

Attorney General Eric Holder will be going to Ferguson, Mo., on Wednesday to meet with federal agents and community leaders there, President Obama said in a news conference Monday.

The Justice Department is conducting its own investigation into the death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teen who was shot by a police officer and whose death has sparked a week of protests.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Mon August 18, 2014

Ferguson, Missouri: A Case Study in Urban Policing

A police officer in Ferguson, MO.
Loavesofbread Creative Commons

The fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown sent hundreds of angry protesters into the streets of Ferguson, Missouri last week. There, chaos erupted as police and demonstrators clashed amid smoke bombs and stun grenades. 

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Ferguson Violence
11:39 pm
Sun August 17, 2014

Report: Autopsy Shows Michael Brown Shot At Least 6 Times

Originally published on Mon August 18, 2014 11:51 am

A preliminary private autopsy performed by Dr. Michael Baden shows that Michael Brown, the unarmed black teenager killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Mo., was shot at least six times, including twice in the head, reports the New York Times.

The Times has more:

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Missouri
8:28 am
Sun August 17, 2014

DOJ Orders Second Autopsy Of Teen Shot By Ferguson Police

Law enforcement officers wait to advance Sunday morning after firing tear gas to disperse a crowd protesting the shooting of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. Authorities report one shooting and several arrests.
Charlie Riedel AP

Originally published on Sun August 17, 2014 3:35 pm

Update at 3:30 p.m. ET

The Justice Department has ordered a second autopsy of Michael Brown, the black teen who was fatally shot by police last week in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, sparking off a week of angry and frequently violent protests.

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StoryCorps
2:31 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

After A Traffic Stop, Teen Was 'Almost Another Dead Black Male'

Alex Landau and his mother, Patsy Hathaway, on a visit to StoryCorps.
StoryCorps

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 8:33 am

EDITOR'S NOTE: This story contains graphic descriptions and offensive language.

Alex Landau, who is African-American, was adopted by a white couple as a child and grew up in largely white, middle-class suburbs of Denver.

Still, "we never talked about race growing up," Landau tells his mother, Patsy Hathaway, on a visit to StoryCorps. "I just don't think that was ever a conversation."

"I thought that love would conquer all and skin color really didn't matter," Hathaway says. "I had to learn the really hard way when they almost killed you."

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Missouri
8:16 am
Fri August 15, 2014

'They're Talking To People': Tensions Ease In Ferguson As Police Change Tactics

Protests against the police shooting and killing of teenager Michael Brown had a different feel Thursday in Ferguson, Mo. Police scaled back their military-style operations and instead walked with protesters.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 15, 2014 12:40 pm

Ferguson, Mo., saw more protests last night — but instead of meeting demonstrators with tear gas and armored vehicles, police walked with them, and posed for photos. The shift came after days of clashes sparked by the police killing of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown.

From St. Louis Public Radio, Rachel Lippmann reports:

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Code Switch
2:59 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

What Policing Looks Like To A Former Officer

Demonstrators protest the killing of teenager Michael Brown by Police.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Wed August 13, 2014 6:23 pm

Ronald Hampton worked in law enforcement in Washington, D.C., for 23 years, first on the street, and then as a community relations officer. He was also heavily involved in program development, education and crime prevention. He retired from the police force in 1994, but continued his work as the executive director of the National Black Police Association. Today he teaches criminal justice at the University of the District of Columbia.

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Election 2014
12:54 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Plainfield Democratic Candidate's Husband Is a White Supremacist

Attorney Anna Zubkova and her husband, Robert Freeman.
Credit Facebook

A Democratic primary race for a probate judge seat in Plainfield is getting national attention after it was revealed that the husband of one of the candidates is a white supremacist.

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Equitable Opportunity
9:24 am
Thu August 7, 2014

Rich Kid, Poor Kid: For 30 Years, Baltimore Study Tracked Who Gets Ahead

A rooftop view of East Baltimore, 1979.
Elinor Cahn Courtesy of Elinor Cahn Photographs, The Photography Collections, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Originally published on Sun August 10, 2014 6:21 pm

Education is historically considered to be the thing that levels the playing field, capable of lifting up the less advantaged and improving their chances for success.

"Play by the rules, work hard, apply yourself and do well in school, and that will open doors for you," is how Karl Alexander, a Johns Hopkins University sociologist, puts it.

But a study published in June suggests that the things that really make the difference — between prison and college, success and failure, sometimes even life and death — are money and family.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:38 am
Mon August 4, 2014

The Scramble: Diversity, Death, and Relatability

William Shakespeare
Credit unbekannt nach einem Gemalde--Carte de Visite / Wikimedia Commons

There are ways today in which our topics are interconnected. Actress and writer Mellini Kantayya, wants to talk about the issues of diversity in casting. One of our other topics involves the fallout from Ira Glass's recent tweet that "Shakespeare sucks." New Yorker writer Rebecca Mead joins us to discuss her article deploring the modern vogue for

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue June 24, 2014

How Healthy Is Connecticut?

Our third Health Equity panel discussions was held at CPBN's Chase Family studios.
Steve Honigfeld

Our third Health Equity Forum is a project we’ve been working on for a few years now with our partners at Connecticut Health Foundation, exploring the idea of health equity in Connecticut. How do we make sure that everyone has the best possible health outcomes regardless of race, regardless of how much money you have?

It’s a tricky issue for policy makers, which is why we’re so glad to have as the basis for our conversation a new set of information called the Connecticut Health Care Survey. Six organizations came together to put out this report, which is drawn from some 5400 households interviewed. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:33 am
Wed June 11, 2014

Young Black Men Pay a Hefty Price

David Canton is an associate professor of History at Connecticut College
Chion Wolf

President Obama announced a five-year, $200 million initiative to help young black men succeed. It's called "My Brother's Keeper," and aims to work with non-profits and foundations to search for solutions to the  problems of young black men. Leaders cite school and job readiness, discipline, and parenting as a few of the problems they'll tackle, but it's  mostly the bone-crushing poverty and low expectations that hold them back. 

This well-intended initiative put forth to help young black men succeed will  help a few beat the odds at the expense of the masses. The success feels good but may not change much.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Wed June 11, 2014

The Wheelhouse: Public Policy in the Dark; Metro-North Problems; and Resolution in East Haven

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra announces the deal to bring baseball to town.
Credit Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Hartford’s “done deal” on minor league baseball once again has our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse thinking about the process behind government decisions. The plan to bring the New Britain Rock Cats' franchise to town was months in the making behind closed doors. 

We also check in on East Haven where a racial discrimination settlement was reached, closing another chapter in the painful history of the town. A very old bridge is creating new problems for Metro-North commuters down the shoreline too and officials are pointing fingers.

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Code Switch
11:59 am
Mon June 9, 2014

What Is Your Race? For Millions Of Americans, A Shifting Answer

The race question on the census is constantly changing.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Mon June 9, 2014 7:22 pm

This post has been updated.

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Code Switch
9:14 am
Thu June 5, 2014

The Modest Bus Station At The Center Of A World-Changing Confrontation

When the Freedom Riders arrived in Montgomery, they were greeted by an armed, racist mob, while the local police were conspicuously absent.
Anonymous AP

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 3:38 pm

EDITOR'S NOTE: This summer, we'll be regularly spotlighting sites on the National Register of Historic Places that have some significance to issues of race and culture.

The Montgomery Greyhound Station, Montgomery, Ala.

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The Two-Way
7:26 am
Fri May 30, 2014

NBA Says LA Clippers Sale 'Resolved,' But Sterling Vows To Sue

Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling (left) has announced a "binding contract" to sell the team to former Microsoft executive Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. Any sale of the team would require the NBA's approval before it is made official.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 7:49 pm

Shelly Sterling says her family's trust has reached a deal to sell the Los Angeles Clippers to former Microsoft executive Steve Ballmer for $2 billion. The wife of embattled Clippers owner Donald Sterling issued a news release announcing a "binding contract" Thursday night.

"I am delighted that we are selling the team to Steve, who will be a terrific owner," Shelly Sterling said in the news release. "We have worked for 33 years to build the Clippers into a premiere NBA franchise. I am confident that Steve will take the team to new levels of success."

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Addiction
4:08 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

Today's Heroin Addict Is Young, White And Suburban

A heroin user in St. Johnsbury, Vt., prepares to shoot up.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 2:50 pm

Heroin was once the scourge of the urban poor, but today the typical user is a young, white suburbanite, a study finds. And the path to addiction usually starts with prescription painkillers.

A survey of 9,000 patients at treatment centers around the country found that 90 percent of heroin users were white men and women. Most were relatively young — their average age was 23. And three-quarters said they first started not with heroin but with prescription opioids like OxyContin.

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Code Switch
1:23 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

The Desire For A Reckoning Meets The Wish For A Reset

Since 1989, Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich., has introduced into each session of Congress a bill called HR 40, Commission to Study Reparation Proposals for African Americans Act.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 11:45 am

The title of Ta-Nehisi Coates' much-discussed cover story at The Atlantic, "The Case for Reparations," might be something of a misnomer.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue May 27, 2014

How Healthy Is Connecticut?

This Health Equity panel discussion was held at CPBN's Chase Family studios.
Steve Honigfeld

Our third Health Equity Forum is a project we’ve been working on for a few years now with our partners at Connecticut Health Foundation, exploring the idea of health equity in Connecticut. How do we make sure that everyone has the best possible health outcomes regardless of race, regardless of how much money you have?

It’s a tricky issue for policy makers, which is why we’re so glad to have as the basis for our conversation a new set of information called the Connecticut Health Care Survey. Six organizations came together to put out this report, which is drawn from some 5400 households interviewed. 

Read more
Native American Mascots
12:27 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Blumenthal, Murphy Urge NFL to Change Team's Name

Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy are asking the NFL to change the name of the Washington, D.C. franchise.
Bernard Gagnon Wikimedia Commons

Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy joined 48 other senators calling for the name of the NFL's Washington franchise to be changed. The letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell referenced the NBA's response to the Donald Sterling controversy regarding comments Sterling made about African-Americans.

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Television
2:05 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

This Fall, TV Looks Much More Diverse: Now Don't Screw It Up

ABC's How To Get Away With Murder stars Oscar nominee Viola Davis.
Craig Sjodin ABC

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 1:13 pm

For those of us who have spent time arguing for increased ethnic and cultural diversity on television, the last seven days have felt like a fantasy fever dream.

This week, the big broadcast networks announced their schedules for the 2014-15 TV season during the industry's "upfront" presentations to advertisers. And there are 10 new series featuring non-white characters and/or show creators – numbers we haven't seen since the days when everybody was trying to clone The Cosby Show.

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Code Switch
8:44 am
Fri May 16, 2014

A Complicated First: A Black Editor Takes The Helm At The Gray Lady

The New York Times removed the first woman to ever hold its top editor post and replaced her with the first person of color to ever do so.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 6:58 pm

When New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger removed Jill Abramson from the paper's executive editor spot on Wednesday, it stunned the media world. Abramson was the first woman to ever fill the paper's top post and was credited with helping right its fiscal ship, and much of the early coverage about just why she was pushed out centered on a possible dispute over her pay, which was less than her male predecessors' compensation.

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Code Switch
12:29 pm
Thu May 15, 2014

Young People Want Equality But Struggle To Discuss Bias

These protesters rallied outside the Supreme Court in favor of affirmative action last fall, but MTV found that majorities of young people, across races, opposed racial preferences of any kind.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 2:53 pm

One oft-employed generalization about The Kids These Days is that they've grown up free from the legalized discrimination and racial neuroses of older generations, and they will live in a more multicultural world with less racism. But do we even know if that's true?

MTV, that reliable weather vane of popular youth culture, wanted to find out. It polled a nationally representative sample of people ages 14 to 24 about their views on bias and identity.

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NBA Controversy
10:15 am
Mon May 12, 2014

'I Was Baited,' Donald Sterling Tells CNN In (Mostly) Apologetic Interview

Shelly Sterling (top right), wife of embattled L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling, watches Friday's Game 3 of the Clippers playoff series. The NBA says that if Donald Sterling is forced out, his wife cannot keep the team, either.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

"I'm not a racist," Donald Sterling tells CNN in an interview about the scandal that brought a lifetime ban from the NBA. "I made a terrible, terrible mistake. And I'm here with you today to apologize and to ask for forgiveness for all the people that I've hurt."

Sterling also said he isn't likely to engage in a drawn-out legal battle with the NBA if the league attempts to force him out as the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.

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NBA Playoffs
8:11 am
Sun May 4, 2014

For The Clippers, Something To Cheer: A Win In Game 7

L.A. Clippers forward Blake Griffin shoots in the lane during his team's win over the Golden State Warriors in Game 7 Saturday night. The Clippers won 126-121.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 8:21 pm

The postseason continues for the Los Angeles Clippers, who won a pivotal Game 7 Saturday night, days after the team's owner was banned for life by the NBA. The Clippers ended the Golden State Warriors' season in a back-and-forth game that came down to the final minute.

In a high-octane game that was marked by the Warriors' 3-point shooting and the Clippers' late dunks, Los Angeles held on to win, 126-121.

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Statistics
11:13 pm
Sat May 3, 2014

Who's Waiting On Death Row?

Holding cells at a former prison.
Tracy King iStockphoto

Originally published on Sat May 3, 2014 5:21 pm

News of Tuesday's botched execution in Oklahoma got us thinking more generally about who is in prison and who is facing the death penalty.

Here are some figures that may surprise you:

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The Colin McEnroe Show
6:00 am
Fri May 2, 2014

The Nose Leaves Connecticut to Get Over Donald Sterling

Theresa Cramer as the Dramatic Squirrel.
Chion Wolf WNPR

This hour on The Nose, we lead off with a Gallup poll in which Connecticut ranked second, just a tick behind Illinois, as one of the states people are most eager to leave. Half of the Connecticut people polled said they'd like to move out.

Now, it would be a mistake to ascribe this to any one thing. Property taxes, job market, unfriendly people, dormant cities, and cold weather all play a role, but I can't help but wonder whether Connecticut temperament itself also plays a role. People from Wisconsin would be less likely to say a bad word about the place, even if they had all their belongings packed. That's just now how they talk about life.

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Banned for Life
8:33 am
Wed April 30, 2014

Bad Behavior From A Sports Franchise Owner? That's Not New

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling at a game against the San Antonio Spurs on Nov. 7, 2012, in Los Angeles.
Mark J. Terrill AP

Originally published on Wed April 30, 2014 9:13 am

Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been banned for life from the NBA after he made racist comments.

Sports bans aren't new.

In 1990, New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner was banned from day-to-day management of the club by Major League Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent.

Steinbrenner was reinstated in 1993.

Sterling is 80. He comes from another time and is not only the senior NBA owner –– since 1981 –– but also, although probably this won't surprise you, historically the very worst owner in all of sport.

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