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Another Reason Foodstamps and Welfare are Racial Justice Issues: It’s Not What You Think

I’m going to begin this article with the assumption that we’re all agreed that conservative attacks on food stamps and welfare recipients as entitlement junkies are racist. If you aren’t in agreement, you’re reading the wrong article.

These attacks have been going on for as long as civil rights reforms have assured people of color equitable access to public entitlements. Once upon a time, when welfare was white, this wasn’t an issue. Of course, back then, we thought “decent” white women should be excluded from the workforce, or at least from jobs with family wages, so when they lost …

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The Colorblind Racism of Michael Bloomberg

The September 7 issue of New York Magazine featured an interview with outgoing New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg that I’m guessing you’ve heard about. In it, Bloomberg accused Bill de Blasio, the Democratic frontrunner in the current mayoral primary, of running a racist campaign because some of his ads feature his black wife and bi-racial children…seriously.

It’s a case of the salt calling the pepper white that would be funny is it wasn’t an example of colorblind racism, the prevailing racist logic of our supposedly post-racial age. Here’s what I mean.

Bloomberg’s accusation imposes a double standard on de Blasio …

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Legalizing Marijuana May Be A Good Idea, But It Is Not A Racial Justice Strategy

Ever since election day, liberal pundits and activists have been buzzing about the success of marijuana decriminalization ballot measures in Washington and Colorado. The general consensus is that these election victories and polls showing that a majority of Americans support decriminalization of marijuana is harbinger of better days to come, and not just because we may one day all be able to light up without legal consequences.

Among the most frequently made arguments for legalization is that it is a step toward ending mass incarceration resulting from the war on drugs. Many also argue that the cost of marijuana enforcement …

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Who Is More Racist, Republicans or Democrats?

Lately, the debate over who is more racist, the Democratic Party or the Republican Party, has heated up, with accusations flying from both sides. The discussion really got going when Chris Hayes, host of MSNBC’s Up with Chris Hayes, said of Republicans, “It is undeniably the case that racist Americans are almost entirely in one political coalition and not the other.”

That got the twitter-verse screaming foul. Hayes himself quickly took back his statement citing economist Alex Tabarrok’s research revealing that where racism is concerned, the parties are pretty much in a tie.  Hayes also cited John Sides‘ …

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Where I Stand on the Color Line

Throughout my adult life, I have struggled over the color line. I’ve never doubted it exists. Rather, my struggle has been over which side of that line I’m on.

This struggle has been on my mind since my 20s, when a Japanese American woman many years my senior told me this story:

She recalled being a young college student in the South in the 1950s. She was 12 years from being released from an internment camp where she and her family were detained during WWII.

She went to school determined to make something of herself. She wanted nothing more …