I am an African-American woman who has lived my life on the cusp of all of the most significant social, domestic and foreign policy movements of the past half-century. I was born in the middle of the baby boom. I am a personal witness to the March on Washington, the Black Power movement, the rise of feminism and then the first Earth Day. The war in Vietnam and Watergate unfolded before my very eyes. I watched Republicans demonize Jimmy Carter for attempting to bring compassion to government's treatment of the poor and the environment and having the audacity to speak out loud of the coming ideological war facing the nation. I watched as Ronald Regan eased the country into that war and what would become the ever-expanding, insidious and inhumane age of ultra-conservatism, fascism in the name of the Lord and the evolution of ever-present, state-sanctioned racism. My Master's thesis was an analysis of the deal with the Devil that Bill Clinton made as he "changed welfare as we know it" into a punitive, regressive inescapable trap that reinforced and re-institutionalized systemic support for the cycle of generational poverty for people of color. I watched as leadership at the federal state, and local levels colluded in the deconstruction of the domestic policy infrastructure of our government and shredded the safety net of job training, childcare, education, transportation, cash assistance for the poor in an unprecedented rending of the social contract of America with its people. "I am woman hear me roar." Willie Horton and Michael Brown. "I Am a Man" to "Black Lives Matter." These have been the hallmarks of my journey from a tiny town in rural Missouri where Jim Crow ruled to this place where today I work on behalf of urban and rural poverty-stricken and communities of color from the heart of one of the most powerful institutions in the world. I am still living public policy, but now, as we are on the cusp of the end of America as we have known it, I am speaking out loud; sharing my struggle to make sense of the world of increasing senselessness

An American coup d’etat

Imagine the scene at the U.S. Capitol building today if these so-called “protesters” were black, brown, or Muslim. There would be blood in the streets and mass arrests by now. I have not heard one word about any arrests, tear gas, or rubber bullets even though a woman was shot and critically injured in the […]


Do not forget how we got here

As the President’s illness is comprehensively covered and updated in frenzied, up-to-the-minute posts, I continue to wonder about the fate of all of those brown people–adults and children–who walked here. They came up through Central America and Mexico, hundreds of miles, with just the clothes on their backs and hope for the children whose hands […]


Battle for Fairness: Progressive Prosecutors Under Fire

Once elected, criminal justice reformers face nasty attacks. By Rashad Robinson http://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/11/opinion/george-floyd-prosecutors.html “District attorneys elected to carry out progressive policies over the last five years have been met with resistance from police departments and unions, as well as from judges, lawmakers and even some corporations. They have used their power to prevent these prosecutors from doing […]


The Economics of COVID-19 and racial disparity

If income inequality is getting worse, then the economy cannot be getting better because more people are worse off. Of course, this only matters if one is concerned with the lived experiences of real people in the real economy. Perhaps the stock market is (was) getting better and the very rich continue to get richer, […]