Frankie Huang

In September 2019, I was in Washington, D.C. for The Atlantic Festival, and fell in love with the city. I began applying for journalism jobs there. One company invited me to an interview process, where artificial intelligence software would be a required component in three out of four steps.

As a black woman past the age of 40, I knew I was highly susceptible to biases built into this software, even as a member of a triple-protected class with a background in law, computer technology, and intellectual property. The company’s aggressive push towards its AI software prompted my loss of interest in the job, and to some degree, the job-seeking process itself.

This is not an anodyne example.

Joy Buolamwini, founder of the Algorithmic Justice League and researcher at the MIT Media Lab, discovered that facial recognition software recognised her face when she put on a white mask, and…


ON AMERICA’S INCREDIBLY LOW BAR FOR HONORING DEAD WHITE GUYS

Mt. Rushmore (public domain)

This story was first published at Terra Incognita Media.

ON AMERICA’S INCREDIBLY LOW BAR FOR HONORING DEAD WHITE GUYS

Many of this nation’s towering figures are propped up by selective, revisionist, and fictional histories: young George Washington who “could not tell a lie”; Thomas Jefferson, a man for “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”; Theodore Roosevelt, the naturalist Nobel Prize winner, Abraham Lincoln’s “nation conceived in Liberty, [where] all men are created equal.”

Their likeness cut into a granite mountainside in South Dakota and elevated for 80 years, these American Presidents have been made larger than life, but an examination of the character of these men at the ground…


Blacks are “essentially absent from large swaths of coverage, and even more sparsely represented among the ranks of editors. The Problem is obvious to anyone who cares to look…” Howard French, graduate professor at Columbia University / Getty Images

The New York Post has come under fire for racial bias in two stories. The first titled “Trayvon Martin had traces of marijuana in system at time of death, autopsy reveals” presents 17-year-old Martin, black, unarmed, and murdered near his home in 2012, with a negative, or prejudicial, bias. The second, a recent story, titled “Suspected teen gunman Kyle Rittenhouse spotted cleaning Kenosha graffiti before shooting” presents the white, heavily-armed, alleged murderer, also 17, with a positive, or confirmation, bias. The images set side-by-side bring to mind Alexandra Bell’s bracing Counternarratives, which “interrogates and revises racial bias in media.”

In…


Sen. Kamala Harris officially accepted the Democratic vice-presidential nomination at the party’s national convention. CHRIS DELMAS GETTY IMAGES

There’s an opinion that’s been kept fairly silent in the present political climate and mainstream conversation about Sen. Kamala Harris, Joe Biden’s vice-presidential pick. Across social media, in a kind of herd-policing that makes expression of contrary opinions unlikely, uncomfortable truths about Harris are quickly deprioritized as pedestrian or simply contrarian, anti-black, “party-pooper” — and even pro-Trump.

Throughout her career, Harris, a woman of South-Asian and Jamaican ethnicity, has been several black “firsts” on the basis of her race and gender, and now again as Biden’s VP pick. …


James Forman speaking in Montgomery. (Photo by Glen Pearcy)

One Sunday in the spring of 1969, James Forman walked into the sanctuary of Riverside Church in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of Manhattan, barreled his way to the pulpit, commandeered the microphone, and before many wide-eyed and captive congregants, declared:

Underneath all of this exploitation, the racism of this country has produced a psychological effect upon us that we are beginning to shake off. We are no longer afraid to demand our full rights as a people of this decadent society.

Forman chose Riverside Church for the delivery of his address-The Black Manifesto-because of Riverside’s association with the Rockefeller family…


Win Win before COVID-19. Image courtesy of Win Win Coffee Bar.

Win Win Coffee Bar is a tucked-away, uniquely local experience built with creatives in mind. Longtime friends and co-owners Matt Namaste and Nikisha Bailey draw inspiration from the people and the culture of Philadelphia’s traditionally Black, but steadily gentrifying, neighborhoods of Spring Garden and Callowhill.

For Bailey, an executive with Artist Partners Group/ Atlantic Records, elevating the arts has always been key. Singer-songwriters, producers, and poets navigating the confusing nature of legal rights and ownership of their created works often don’t feel safe sharing. Bailey’s changing that.

“I love the arts,” says Bailey, 33. “With Win Win, we wanted to…


Photo by Carla Bell

George Floyd left this world in handcuffs and muffled cries for his mother.

And in that week following another state-sponsored murder of another black man, I’d been in my little apartment in Tacoma, about 40 minutes south of Seattle, doing what I’m doing now — contemplating the complex orchestration of black life and death in America.

Everything about the day felt tauntingly ordinary. Outside my windows, the sun bounced off leafy treetops. I priced cleaning a wool rug. Bills were due. But through the hum of the fan…a faint voice like a collective whisper, and I got still.

“….george floyd……george…


(Los Angeles Review of Books)

IN 2006, AT JUST 22 years of age, Bakari Sellers was elected to the South Carolina General Assembly as a Representative in the House, following that up with a run for lieutenant governor before he was 30. Now 35, Sellers is a practising attorney and CNN analyst on race and politics in the United States. Somewhere on the horizon, there’s a run to represent the people as a member of the United States Congress. …

Carla Bell

Dir Black Writers/Culture Editor @mayday_online :::bylines @Forbes @Essence @EBONYmag @ElectricLit @MiamiHerald @seattletimes :::Black mixed with Black:::

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