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Wisdom Class – ‘Dialoguing About Race’ part 2 – Race and Violence

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Date(s) - 08/05/2020
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm


Zoom link – please email the office at taoadmin@taocenter.net for this week’s meeting ID and password. 
Or view this event on Marc Labowitz’ Facebook page.

Tonight’s subject:  Racism and Violence in the United States

The following resources may help your understanding of the panel presentation on Racism and Violence in the U.S.

Please contact the office taoadmin@taocenter.net or Sherry Stern SLStern99@aol.com to register to attend.


The term “antiracist” refers to people who are actively seeking not only to raise their consciousness about race and racism, but also to take-action when they see racial power inequities in everyday life.  Being an antiracist is much different from just being “nonracist,” as Black antiracist Marlon James (2016) made clear. Being a nonracist, means you can have beliefs against racism, but when it comes to events like the murders of Black men by police, “you can watch things at home unfolding on TV, but not do a thing about it.”

According to James, being an antiracist means that you are developing a different moral code, one that pairs a commitment to not being racist (whether verbalized or not) with action to protest and end the racist things you see in the world. He would add that saying you aren’t a racist isn’t enough to start healing from racism. You need the intentional mindset of Yep, this racism thing is everyone’s problem—including mine, and I’m going to do something about it.

This hand-out is from the Racial Healing Handbook: Practical Activities to Help You Challenge Privilege, Confront Systemic Racism, and Engage in Collective Healing by Anneliese A. Singh, PhD, LPC

Also, there are many definitions regarding Racism that are helpful in the book, How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi that are now used in everyday life and we all should be aware of them. Here are a few:

Antiracist: One who is supporting an antiracist policy through their actions or expressing an antiracist idea.

Racist: One who is supporting a racist policy through their actions or inaction or expressing a racist idea.

The opposite of “racist” isn’t “not racist.” It is “antiracist.” What’s the difference? One endorses either the idea of a racial hierarchy as a racist, or racial equality as an antiracist. One either believe problems are rooted in groups of people, as a racist, or locates the roots of problems of power and policies, as an antiracist.


This exhibition explores the years following the end of Reconstruction to show how the nation struggled to define the status of African Americans.

Short on volunteers for the Union cause, Congress instituted a military draft, but when the draft wheels arrived in New York City on July 11th, 1863, the poor revolted and riots ensued.

Has historical documents of laws implemented related to what rights and freedoms were given or taken away from African Americans.

                History of the Destruction of Greenwood in racially segregated Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1906.

This map allows you to click on an individual state to see all BlackPast resources related to that state.

Violence on African American life with major incidents of racial violence and revolts of the enslaved to more recent urban uprisings such as the Rodney King Riot in Los Angeles in 1992.

                Overview after the Civil War through 1968.

Law and Incarceration

Race, crime, and incarceration have long been linked in the United States.

An overview of Jim Crow Laws, creation of the Ku Klux Klan and individuals who fought to overturn the laws.

  • 13th. April 17, 2020. (Video: 1 hour 40 minutes).

Combining archival footage with testimony from activists and scholars, director Ava DuVernay’s examination of the U.S. prison system looks at how the country’s history of racial inequality drives the high rate of incarceration in America.


                Fact tank News in the Numbers.

                An overview shows Blacks feel they are treated less fairly in the criminal justice system.

Community Health, Policing, Segregation in Housing

Rich, John. (2017). Community Violence as a Population Health Issue: Proceedings of a Workshop. Highlights of Keynote Presentation John Rich, “The Impact of Racism and Violence on Communities.” The National Academy of Sciences. The National Center for Biotechnology Information Retrieved from:

This article notes how racism and violence should be viewed as a community health issue. Rich acknowledges the importance of the view of violence as an adaptive behavior. He  says the research community has begun to think more about some of these behaviors as reactions that are logical. Using the framework if these young people see the horizon of possibilities as limited, if they do not see the police as protecting them, if they are hyper-aroused by trauma, and if they live in communities that speak to them about the danger they face, then getting a weapon is a logical, potentially adaptive way to stay safe.

Lester, Neal. A. (June 16, 2020).  “No, I Am Not OK.” Thanks for Asking. Southern Poverty Law Center.

Article begins, “For my white friends who ask if I am OK, the answer is, “No, I am not OK.”

“To ask that question of me right now—amid this COVID-19 pandemic that is disproportionately killing Black and Brown people in the United States and the trauma resulting from the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd—comes off as potentially insensitive.”

Rothstein, Richard. (June 26, 2020). The Segregation Myth: Richard Rothstein Debunks an American Lie | Now This (Video 9 minutes).

Overview from his Book, The Color of Law concerning the history of segregation in housing.


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