Racial Justice2020-06-16T16:27:56-05:00
709, 2020

Broken by design: The long history of the South’s fragmented health care system

By |September 7, 2020|

The Covid-19 pandemic laid bare the problems with the South’s fragmented, patchwork health care system. Nine out of 10 people in the United States who fall into the “coverage gap” live in the South. The region leads the country in high rates of chronic disease and each year we see more and more hospitals shuttering across the rural South.

2908, 2020

‘Stand your ground’: Black drivers have always found creative paths into racing despite racism and financial barriers

By |August 29, 2020|

By Christopher Harress Reckon Staff Writer On a Sunday afternoon in late 1963, on a ramshackle dirt speedway in northeast Florida, a powder blue Chevrolet Bel Air swept to victory and became an iconic part of Black sports history. The 5,000 people in attendance that cold December day did not roar in appreciation as Wendell Oliver Scott emerged from his mud-speckled roadster as the first Black man to win a NASCAR Cup Series race. Race officials at the Jacksonville, Fla., track did not wave the checkered flag as Scott crossed the finish line and refused to acknowledge his two-lap victory. The white race officials instead gave the trophy to a white man who finished in second place.  That decision was eventually overturned, according to Scott’s family, but it came hours after the last fans left, robbing Scott of the opportunity to stand above his competitors on the winners’ podium. In this Aug. 1, 1969, file photo, Wendell Scott sits in a race car, location not known. Scott earned a second NASCAR first on Wednesday, May 21, 2014: He became the first African-American driver to be elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame. (AP Photo/File) Scott, then 43, waited [...]

2508, 2020

The consistent, disciplined and thankless work of Black women in American politics

By |August 25, 2020|

A few years ago, when Alabama Democrat Doug Jones narrowly won a U.S. Senate seat, there were more than a few news headlines suggesting that Black women, almost out of the blue, had become inspired to ramp up their organizing efforts to help deliver Jones the victory. Truth is, though, it's always been Southern Black women doing the in-the-trenches work of grassroots organizing in this country — from abolition to civil rights to women's equality.

2607, 2020

Learn more about higher education’s racist past with these reads

By |July 26, 2020|

By Lily Jackson Taking that first college campus tour is a treat. In the South, the tour includes the long walks through shadeless corridors under the weight of 90% humidity, and welling excitement for a freshman year are paired with the cunning wit and charm of student tour guides.  They weave superstitious tales, like stepping on the campus seal, while informing incoming students of where the shortest food lines are at noon. This newfound paradise of freedom for young people can seem almost too good to be true.  And it is.  Over the past month, Reckon has been wheeling out flashlight stories -- shedding light on the unacknowledged history of the SEC’s racist past. We’ve debunked the myth that Auburn University’s first mascot was an eagle. We’ve revealed the many purchases universities made of enslaved people. We’ve drawn inexcusable lines between leaders of the Confederacy and the names of campus dorms and halls of learning that still exist today.  And on each campus where building name changes have begun, the students have said repeatedly, “This isn’t over. It’s not enough.”  For those who wish to continue learning about the history of SEC universities -- the alumni, the future students, [...]

1206, 2020

“Coming together to fight injustice”

By |June 12, 2020|

Over the last week, thousands of people across Alabama have turned out to protest police brutality in the wake of the death of George Floyd. Pictured is Mia Speights of Birmingham.

1206, 2020

‘I’m scared of you,’ young speaker says to police officer at Huntsville city council meeting

By |June 12, 2020|

They came to the Huntsville city council to ask questions and levy criticism after police twice last week released tear gas to break up protests over the death of George Floyd. More than three dozen people spoke, some firing harsh words at Huntsville police Chief Mark McMurray and Mayor Tommy Battle and others wanting to know why the protests were halted in a militaristic manner.

906, 2020

Kneeling is healing

By |June 9, 2020|

Kneeling is healing. Listen. Look around. Pay attention. Who is humble? Who is kneeling? Listen. Love.

806, 2020

University of Alabama, in first step, to remove three Confederate plaques from campus

By |June 8, 2020|

Three Confederate memorial plaques are to be removed from the University of Alabama campus. The decision came from the Board of Trustees of the UA System, in consultation with Stuart Bell, UA president, according to a release from the UA System on Monday afternoon. The three plaques are located on and in front of the Gorgas Library, and they will be relocated to a “more appropriate historical setting.”

506, 2020

Admiral Raphael Semmes statue removed overnight

By |June 5, 2020|

The 120-year-old Confederate statue of Admiral Raphael Semmes was removed overnight without any warning by the City of Mobile. The removal comes after days of peaceful protest in the Port City and after Birmingham removed its Confederate memorial in Linn Park Monday and Tuesday.

506, 2020

Books on racial justice, anti-racism fly off bookstore shelves

By |June 5, 2020|

Major retailers and local bookstores alike have seen a surging demand for books about racial justice as protests and demonstrations against police brutality have been held around the world. Of the top 20 best-selling books on Amazon the morning of June 5, 14 of those books were about racial equality.

406, 2020

Protest at Memorial Park in Mobile

By |June 4, 2020|

This young child is protesting today on the edge of Mobile’s Memorial Park. Situated between a monument to those who died in the Great War fighting against colonial powers and a Confederate Civil War cannon, around 100 young activists lined the park to protest the death of George Floyd and other black people who have died at the hands of police officers. 📸 @charress

406, 2020

Protest in Mobile is young, diverse and very peaceful

By |June 4, 2020|

Situated between a World War I monument and a Confederate Civil War cannon, around 100 young activists gathered in Mobile’s Memorial Park Thursday afternoon to protest the death of George Floyd and other black people who died at the hands of police. Compared to the civil unrest seen in Mobile on Sunday and in Birmingham and Huntsville over the last five days, Thursday’s protest in the Port City was remarkably different. Protesters, who lined Old Government Street and Government Street, were young, diverse, and very peaceful.

206, 2020

Father and Daughter at Mobile Protest

By |June 2, 2020|

Sweet father and daughter moment at a very peaceful and uplifting protest in West Mobile Tuesday evening. The protests were led by passionate high school and college-aged kids.

206, 2020

Mobile, Alabama Protest

By |June 2, 2020|

Young protesters just off Airport Boulevard in Mobile. They wanted to march down on the main road but MPD Chief Lawrence Battiste threatened to arrest them if they stopped the regular flow of traffic. They stuck to the fringes of a nearby parking lot.

106, 2020

Birmingham Protests May 31, 2020

By |June 1, 2020|

Windows were smashed, small businesses looted, and a statue of Thomas Jefferson was set on fire Sunday night in Birmingham after protestors' attempted and failed to bring down a confederate monument in Linn Park. Protests erupted across the country this weekend in response to the police killing of George Floyd on May 25.

2105, 2020

Reckon’s Handy Guide

By |May 21, 2020|

Why would a white person want to use that word? Even if you don't mean harm, if you know that it causes painful feelings to surface or be interpreted as hateful toward people of color, is it worth it to sing it?

801, 2020

Bryan Stevenson on ‘Just Mercy’

By |January 8, 2020|

"I hope people will take from this that, if we resolve to do better, we have the power to do better," Alabama innocence lawyer and Equal Justice Initiative founder Bryan Stevenson says about the new film, 'Just Mercy'. "We can create a more reliable, more just system. But it takes all of us." "Just Mercy," which features Michael B Jordan playing Stevenson and Jamie Foxx as his client, Walter McMillan, and is in theatres everywhere Friday.

206, 2019

Voicing the Violence: Reflection on Lynching Memorial

By |June 2, 2019|

It's been more than a year since The National Memorial for Peace and Justice opened in Montgomery. Since then, nearly half a million people have visited. In a moving tribute, Reckon's Starr Dunigan reflects on why it's important we remember those lynched by mobs in Alabama and around the country.