Category: Charles M. Blow

The Long Tail of Covid-19

When H.I.V. was believed to largely affect gay white men, many of them in big liberal cities and some of them famous, there was quite a bit of energy and media attention centered on finding a cure or treatment.

As treatments were developed and became widely available — including those that prevented transmission — infection rates among white people declined dramatically. So did media coverage.

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Fatigue Is a Luxury You Can’t Afford

As columnists, we often test the boundaries.

We want to write in provocative ways that inspire readers to think and discuss. But we don’t want to descend into hyperbole or, worse yet, hysteria.

As many of our critics are quick to remind us, we often slide right into that abyss. Sometimes they are right. There is no real science or formal methodology to this form of commentary.

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The Obamas Are Freed in Their Blackness

We celebrate firsts, as we should, I suppose. They reassure us of the notion of relentless American progress, to which we have become accustomed. Although they are often also a reminder of how long people have been prohibited or denied.

Those firsts carry with their honor a burden: the weight of representing the race. They are not free to simply rise or fall on their own merit, and they bear the weight of the whole race.

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Learning Caution From a Late Columnist

Instead of this, white racists simply left the Democratic Party for the Republican one, and kept “racist politics alive” there.

As Wicker put it, “Racist politics, in the final analysis, depends on exclusion of Negroes from voting.” As he summarized:

“The disenfranchisement of Southern Negroes in this century resulted directly from the corrupt and violent competition of Southern Bourbons and Southern agrarians for the Negro vote in the late 19th century.

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After the Derek Chauvin Verdict, the War Continues

This is how many cases live, unresolved, in oral history told from a barber chair or barstool. This is also how hostility, resentment and contempt grow toward policing, criminal justice and politicians. This is why the fundamentals of our criminal justice system must be reshaped in order to restore trust.

So, yes, we celebrate. Even warriors, in an uphill battle, those outgunned and accustomed to loss, are afforded and allowed a moment of celebration over a surprise victory.

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My Second Phase of Adulthood

I have started to manage my regrets and to reduce them, to forgive myself for foolish mistakes and reckless choices, to remember that we are all just human beings stumbling through this life, trying to figure it out, falling down and getting back up along the way. I have learned to cut myself some slack and get on with being a better person.

I must say that the pandemic may also be contributing to all this. I have fundamentally changed during it, been changed by it, like many others I suppose.

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Rage Is the Only Language I Have Left

One of the first times I wrote about the police killing of an unarmed Black man was when Michael Brown was gunned down in the summer of 2014 in Ferguson, Mo. Brown was a Black teenager accused of an infraction in a convenience store just before his life was taken. Last summer, six years on, I wrote about George Floyd, a large Black man accused of an infraction in a convenience store, this time in Minneapolis.

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Lessons From Lynchings

Even after slavery ended, or maybe because it did, lynching surged. And the terror infliction moved from the plantation into the general populace. Often, the bodies weren’t just hanged, they were burned or their fingers, toes or genitalia sliced off. And to commemorate — and disseminate — the terror, postcards were often made of the lynchings.

In 1956, just months after being acquitted in the lynching of 14-year-old Emmett Till, his killers Read original

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