Jim Crow 2.0

After a heated and contentious presidential election in 2020, voting rights are under attack. Georgia just passed a law that makes it harder for those who may be disenfranchised to cast their ballots. Other states are following suit. Mary C. Curtis speaks to Rashad Robinson, president of the social justice organization Color of Change, on what is at stake and what is being done to curtail the rollback of eligible voters to make their voices heard.

Mooch FM: MARY C. CURTIS, JOHNNY TAYLOR JR. & MICHAEL ERIC DYSON

In this episode, Anthony talks with the award-winning political columnist, writer and speaker Mary C. Curtis about life after Trump, the values of the Republican party, and how their conservative principles have “crumbled.”

Johnny Taylor Jr. is chair of the President’s advisory board on Historically Black Colleges and Universities and chief executive of the Society for Human Resource Management, and talks through how we can all help HBCUs – and why “policy should trump politics.”

Finally, world-renowned professor, preacher and bestselling author Michael Eric Dyson chats with Anthony about his latest book ‘Long Time Coming: Reckoning with Race in America.’

A Conversation on Race, Reconciliation and “The Other Side of the Coin”

In this conversation, moderator Mary C. Curtis, an award-winning journalist, talks to Charlotte filmmaker Frederick Murphy and other panelists from his film “The Other Side of the Coin” about the history of race in this country and how their experiences provide lessons and hope for how our country can move toward a better future.

Panelists: Frederick Murphy, documentarian of “The Other Side of the Coin” and founder of “History Before Us”

Todd “Speech” Thomas, two-time Grammy Award-winning artist, known for his group Arrested Development

Alvin C. Jacobs, Jr., photographer and image activist

Susan Y. Marshall, picketer at Women’s College in Greensboro, NC, in 1963

Rev. Ray McKinnon, pastor and activist

Bill Sizemore, author and journalist

See the full film at https://bit.ly/cltfilm.

Since when has racial equity been a controversial goal? Sadly, forever

Somehow, I thought she would live forever.

Cicely Tyson, actress and force of nature, left the world so many heartrending, joyous performances — and much more. She told stories, informed by her 96 years on this earth as an African American and an artist, navigating an industry and a world that sometimes found it difficult to accommodate her own high standards.

One story in particular haunts. On a press tour publicizing her 1972 film “Sounder,” a white male journalist’s comment shook her and helped her decide to choose roles carefully. As she recalled, he told her that “it was difficult for me to accept the fact that this young boy, who was the elder of your sons, referred to his father as ‘Daddy’ [in the movie].” She said she understood what he was saying: “What he could not come to grips with, is the fact that this little Black boy was calling his Black father ‘Daddy’ as his children were calling him.”

But that was nearly 50 years ago, wasn’t it?

In January 2021, in Rochester, N.Y., the go-to for police confronting a situation involving a distraught 9-year-old Black girl yelling for her father was to push her down into the snow, handcuff her and, when she refused to sit in a police car, pepper-spray her. “You’re acting like a child,” said an officer sent to protect and serve. “I am a child” was the frightened little girl’s response.

That racial equity was high on the list of policy priorities for the Biden-Harris administration was not surprising. From policing to housing to health care, made explicit by a pandemic’s disproportionate impact on communities of color, inequality is on display for all to observe, if not experience. The United States has only sporadically turned its gaze inward when it comes to righting racist wrongs, usually when civil rights activism has forced the issue through protest and sacrifice. And under the leadership of Donald Trump, U.S. policies either put the brakes on any effort to realize America’s lofty promises or tried to drag the country backward into a Make America Great Again past that never was.

Black Issues Forum: Biden’s racial equity platform; Tubman on the $20

Black Issues Forum Analysts Mary C. Curtis, Addul Ali, and Steve Rao give their takes on Pres. Biden’s approach to racial inequity, and plans to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill.

No surprise, American Catholics are as split as the nation over Biden

At the memorial service on the eve of Inauguration Day for the hundreds of thousands of Americans who have died from COVID-19, it was symbolic and fitting that a prayer was offered by Cardinal Wilton Gregory. It was a reminder that the other half of the presidential ticket made history in 2020.

While Kamala Harris’ groundbreaking vice presidency has garnered most of the attention, Joseph R. Biden Jr. also is only the second Roman Catholic president of the United States, with John F. Kennedy’s ascension as the first coming 60 years ago.

Gregory’s words that night provided comfort to a mourning nation: “Our sorrow unites us to one another as a single people with compassionate hearts. May our prayer strengthen our awareness of our common humanity and our national unity at a time when harmony is a balm that seeks to comfort and strengthen us as a single people facing a common threat that is no respecter of age, race, culture, or gender.”

But his brief address that night emphasizing “common humanity” and “national unity” did not mention something Gregory himself acknowledged in an interview with Religion News Service, a subject the first African American to hold that rank in the Roman Catholic Church was well-equipped to voice: “The Catholic Church exists within society. … It is supposed to be a source of renewal, conversion. But we are Catholics who live in the American environment, and therefore we share some of the very same problems that the wider society does: racism, inequality, a lack of opportunity.”

It was a divide that I’ve felt throughout my life, as a cradle Catholic with 16 years of Catholic education under my belt. I spent my elementary years in an all-Black school taught by an order of nuns founded in Baltimore by a Black woman and a French priest in 1829 to educate Black children, and high school and college at predominantly white Catholic institutions, never far from reminders of my race and my place in the church. My experiences, good and bad, loomed as large and real as the sacraments.

Terrorism in DC

Terrorists storm the U.S. Capitol, the Georgia elections and more.

When churches need protection, it’s not normal, it’s dangerous. And it’s a sign of trouble to come

The end of an old year prompts not just relief for a 2020 in the rearview mirror, and optimism for the new one ahead that has to be better, but also a chance for that last look back. Which stories lodged in the headlines, and which ones disappeared all too quickly?

As Washington prepared for an onslaught of pro-Trump demonstrations this week, organized by those who refused to accept the president’s defeat and hoped to rattle officials with a last grasp at power, I could not forget the damage from the last time supporters of President Donald Trump visited D.C., when the grounds and property of Black churches were vandalized. That drew not nearly enough outrage, or at least it seemed that way.

For his next act, Trump invited his followers to flood the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday to protest as Congress counted the state-certified electoral votes in a democratic process that is usually routine.

It’s Time to Cover Black Women as the Norm and Not the “Other”

Though I’ve seen the way the media portray Black women evolve over time, I don’t think I’ve ever seen it done exactly right — or at least with the complexity and nuance we deserve. I say we intentionally, though journalists are not supposed to be part of the story. But seeing — and not seeing — myself in the newspapers my family read and the television news shows we watched was what spurred me to choose the profession.

Or, maybe it was the reason the profession chose me.

Now, with Black women rising in visibility in fields from culture to politics, journalists are being tested in reporting on a group of Americans who have been, at turns, ignored and stereotyped. I have viewed the situation from the inside and outside.

Mary C. Curtis: Vice Presidential Debate Preview

CHARLOTTE, NC —  Less than 30 days until election day and Wednesday night vice president Mike Pence and senator Kamala Harris will go face to face in Salt Lake city – in the first and only vice presidential debate.

WCCB Political contributor Mary C. Curtis has a preview of the debate and why it matters.