This show will examine the hot controversy and hostile backlash generated over the last few weeks during the observance of Black History Month by different people, institutions and entities! This has included attacks on artists and institutions seeking to celebrate Black history and/or to educate, in the case of the African American Policy Institute’s “Unequal Opportunity Race” video about the historic origins of structural racism in the United States of America. Our special guest for the first part of the show is Professor Luke Harris, Co-Director of the African American Policy Forum, who will provide insight about this current controversy. During the second half of the show, we will celebrate two college students, Brialle Ringer and Rasheed J. Atwater, from Eastern Michigan University who will describe their great award winning public service projects. And at the end of the show, Dr. Phillip Jackson will bring a short word about economic empowerment.
American public debate has been embroiled over the White anger expressed by former Mayor Giuliani and law enforcement officials over Beyonce’s release of her video and song “Formation” to her performance at the Super Bowl. In her now famous performance, Beyonce featured a video tracing Black history in New Orleans, celebrating African American beauty and expressing support for African Americans facing police brutality. At the Super Bowl, Beyonce performed a version of “Formation” with an all Black woman dancing troupe that featured tributes to Michael Jackson, the 50th Anniversary of the Black Panther Party, and Malcolm X. This “blacklash” has been so extreme that Saturday Night Live devoted a major segment to parodying the White overreaction to Formation. This Tuesday, an anti-Beyonce, boycott Beyonce, rally and protest is being held in NYC. A counter pro-Beyonce protest is being led by radio host Joe Madison.
At the same time, after White parents complained about the use by the Henrico County, Virginia Board of Education of the “Unequal Opportunity Race” structural racism instructional video by the African American Policy Forum calling it racist. See the video at www.AAPF.org. Fox News has unleashed a national campaign to condemn the school system and the AAPF. School officials have now banned the playing of the video. Parents want the principal fired. Since Fox News started its campaign the AAPF has received hundreds of hate filled, outright racist emails and phone calls denouncing the video.
We will discuss why is there this major White backlash to 2016 Black History Month? Is this a result of the “Trump Effect” or something else? Why the anger over the “Unequal Opportunity Race” video? What is in the video to lead to cries for its censorship? How is the AAPF responding to this controversy?
We will ask the award winning college students to describe how they decided to become involved in community service? What is the thrust of their projects? Is this a trend of their generation? What has been the reaction to their awards?
At the end of the show Dr. Jackson will leave us with a message of wisdom for the week.
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Luke C. Harris