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Obama’s Plan to Aid Black Men and Boys Will Be a Boon to Other Groups, Too

Written by Maya Rockeymoore

By john a. powell and Maya Rockeymoore

In this year's State of the Union address, President Obama announced a new initiative focused on the needs of boys and men of color. While the overall address received much applause, this new effort was met with a conspicuous silence. The president may have anticipated this less than generous response. As if to preemptively address his critics, he assured the nation that this initiative would not require any money from the government and instead would be funded through private donations from foundations and other nongovernment entities.

Written On Wednesday, July 09 2014 14:21

Policy Round-Up: The REDEEM Act

Written by Nakia Gladden

In the most unlikely of pairs, first-term Senators Corey Booker and Rand Paul, have teamed up to introduce a measure that will create a comprehensive overhaul of the US Criminal Justice system. The legislation, called the Record Expungement Designed to Enhance Employment (REDEEM Act), was introduced Tuesday, July 8th.

Written On Wednesday, July 09 2014 14:06

The Civil Rights Act at 50: Why We Still Need Liberation Policy

Written by Maya Rockeymoore

Hearing President Obama's speech on the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act, we are encouraged by the progress America has made to live up to its promise. Yet it marks a bittersweet moment. For although there are no more Bull Connors with dogs chasing down African Americans, we continue to bury our head in the sand regarding racial economic inequality.

Written On Friday, April 11 2014 13:20

Policy Round Up: Gun Control

Written by Tyler Grote

Last Monday, the United States was shocked and saddened by yet another mass shooting rampage, this time just miles from the White House at Washington, DC's Navy Yard. As with recent tragedies in Aurora, Colo. and Newtown, Conn., as well as the high-profile George Zimmerman case in Florida, the general public and elected officials have called for serious gun control reform.

Written On Monday, September 23 2013 15:34

I am Trayvon Martin

Written by Maya Rockeymoore

I am Trayvon Martin. If a kid minding his own business on the way home from the store can be confronted and killed with impunity just because he looked suspicious—based on the stereotypical beliefs of an overzealous volunteer neighborhood watchman—then no one is safe in this country and no one can be guaranteed justice. We are all Trayvon Martin.

Written On Wednesday, July 24 2013 14:01

Stand Your Ground Increases Racial Bias in a "Justifiable Homicide" Trials

Written by Lisa Wade, Ph.D.

Today a jury found George Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder. It is widely argued that Florida’s stand your ground statute, which was considered by the defense, and which Zimmerman previously studied in a criminal litigation course, was at play. The statute allows people to use proportionate force in the face of an attack without first trying to retreat or escape. More than 20 other states have such laws.

Written On Friday, July 19 2013 10:41

Policy Round Up: Gun Control

Written by Moriah Ray


With the recent ruling in the George Zimmerman case debates on race relations have filled the headlines, along with heated commentary about the future of gun control legislation. Florida resident, George Zimmerman, was found not guilty of the murder of 17 year old Trayvon Martin after pleading self defense. Zimmerman’s lawyers argued that under the Stand Your Ground laws of Florida Zimmerman was completely justified in shooting the unarmed teen. This incident has fueled a great deal of controversy over the legitimacy of Stand Your Ground and gun control laws in the United States as a whole. Nationally, the Zimmerman trial has managed to push gun control back to the forefront of public policy discussions.

Written On Friday, July 19 2013 10:16

Sentencing in Toddler’s Death Highlights Importance of Needs-Based Services for Families

Written by Mariah Craven

On the morning of May 31st, Biannela Susana will find out how much more time she’ll spend in prison in connection with the death of her youngest son. Whether the judge sentences her to the maximum 30 years or not, it’s hard to imagine that any punishment will top the nightmare that her life has been so far. In 2011, Biannela and her then 12-year-old son Cristian were charged in the death of two-year-old David.

Written On Wednesday, May 22 2013 10:59

Policy Round Up: Death Penalty

Written by Shanel Adams

Senator Joel Anderson’s new bill hopes to revitalize the death penalty in California. One of the most controversial aspects of the bill is the proposal for gas chambers to be included in their death penalty system. This will allow California to be the only place globally to use suffocation as a form of criminal punishment.

Written On Friday, April 26 2013 12:57

The Dreamer’s Vanishing Army

Written by Henrie Treadwell

Martin Luther King, Jr., the drum major for justice, might have some difficulty today raising an army of soldiers for justice! The time for marching is not over as civil rights struggles continue. Witness the pandemic levels of mass incarceration. In many cities the young men, the men who used to march in an earlier era, are gone away to years behind the fence of jail or prison.

Written On Thursday, February 14 2013 09:20
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