Racial Justice and Joy

Over the past couple weeks I've been doing a lot of thinking about joy - how we choose whether to focus on joy or pain, what it takes to choose joy and the role that joy plays in our ability to sustain work for justice.  In thinking about that, I realized that much of the news and reporting out there about race and racism is about what's not working, what's wrong, what needs to be fixed.  While that is clearly important information to disseminate, since many Americans, especially White Americans, aren't aware of those realities, it's also important that the realities of what's great, what's working and the joy that is happening around racial justice be shared as well.  So, with that in mind, this week's post (and maybe those to follow) will be focusing on what's working, rather than what's not.  If you have come across other great articles about what's working and the joy of this work, leave a link in the comments.

Black Excellence is 8 Black Women Making History by Earning Their PhD Together - These eight women served as champions and supports for one another as they pursued their PhDs in education at Indiana University, in a program that few women of color had previously graduated from.  

MacArthur Foundation Bails Out Jurisdictions That Jail Too Many - This well known foundation will be distributing at least $1 million dollars to almost a dozen areas to incentivize reducing their prison populations.

Homeless Court Removes Housing, Job Barriers for People on the Streets - Sonoma County's Homeless Court gives alternative punishments for infractions that would otherwise result in a fine that these individuals couldn't pay - keeping them from getting housing or a job.

How One Mississippi District Made Integration Work - A success story about one school district's unique approach to integration that has demonstrated success over decades.

President Obama Reaffirms The Potential of Boys of Color in Powerful PSA - This article introduces and links to a PSA that aired recently sending the message that we believe in the futures of young Black boys.

Facing Race Issues in the Classroom: How to connect with students - An inspiring article about how one school district is approaching the achievement gap and racial bias in the classroom by engaging students in the process.