James Baldwin on “America’s ‘race problem'”

Today is the birthday of writer, activist and artist, James Baldwin.  Today, I salute his courageous questioning of the social construct of race, the distance between race and human identity.  Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the words and witness of Mr. James Baldwin.  

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Lynching, nooses and the violence of silence

James Baldwin looked down at the red clay hills of Georgia and thought “that this earth had acquired its color from the blood that dripped down from the trees.”  That lynching is a part of America’s troubled history cannot be overstated and yet it is not often talked about.  Still, Billie Holiday sang of its […]

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Full of Ourselves

“Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself […]

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The Lie of Race

“White people have not always been ‘white,’ nor will they always be ‘white.’  It is a political alliance.  Things will change.”  {Amoja Three Rivers} I begin with whiteness because all of the other social colors define themselves by it.  In fact, the other social colors exist for it.  Whiteness depends on blackness, for example, for […]

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Getting away from race

“Someone once said to me that the people in general cannot bear very much reality.  He meant by this that they prefer fantasy to a truthful recreation of their experience.” ~ James Baldwin, “Mass Culture and the Creative Artist: Some Personal Notes,” 1959 In recent days, I have been reading the writings of noted author […]

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