Equity & Justice

Race, Ethnicity, Gender, Culture, Income, and Justice

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New Reports Find U Of I Law Professor Violated Sexual Harassment Policy

Feb 18, 2020
Travis Stansel / Illinois Public Media

Fifteen women claim Jay Kesan made unwanted sexual advances according to university investigations from last year. 

In 1981, Charles Fuller's A Soldier's Play premiered in New York City, featuring actors who would go on to become household names, like Samuel L. Jackson and Denzel Washington. The following year, Fuller became the second African American in history to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. But, at the time, the play did not transfer to Broadway. Fuller, who is now 80, wasn't surprised.

"I never thought it would be on Broadway," he says from his home in Toronto.

John High has diabetes, which led to his leg being amputated below the knee two years ago. He's been using a wheelchair since then, and hasn't gotten used to having to work out solutions to everyday problems — such as getting in and out of the shower in the small rental house he shares with his son in Norman, Okla. But when he hears a tornado siren blaring out its high-pitched warning he feels a spasm of fear and dread. In this situation, he's on his own.

Updated at 8:50 p.m. ET

In 1979, Jane Whaley and her husband, Sam, started the Word of Faith Fellowship church in North Carolina.

In recent years, the organization has been investigated for alleged abuse of its congregants — and has faced other charges ranging from fraud to human trafficking.

A new documentary, Black Patriots: Heroes of the Revolution, introduces us to heroes of the American Revolution who aren't typically found in history books. They are a writer, a double agent, a martyr and a soldier — and they are all black.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the executive producer. He is a Hall of Fame basketball player, writer, activist, and in 2016 the recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

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As national debate on government-mandated paid family leave continues, lawmakers in Illinois say they want it enacted here.

A Utah bill that would reduce polygamy among consenting adults from a felony to an infraction — on par with a traffic ticket — was unanimously endorsed by a state Senate committee earlier this week, despite opposition from critics who argue the law could potentially protect abusers.

The move advances Senate Bill 102 to the full chamber for a vote.

"Vigorous enforcement of the law during the mid-twentieth century did not deter the practice of plural marriage," Sen. Deidre Henderson told NPR.

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Pope Francis has sidestepped a request for married men to be ordained as priests and women to be ordained as deacons, saying the Roman Catholic Church should find other ways to address a dire shortage of clergy in South America's Amazon region. Bishops in that part of the world had asked for fundamental shifts in Roman Catholic policy last autumn.

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The book we're talking about right now almost didn't exist.

Little Legends celebrates exceptional men in black history; it's by the author-illustrator Vashti Harrison. She says she thought long and hard about taking on this subject matter, because she relates more to women's stories.

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Tomorrow, Americans will have a new TV channel they can turn to for news.

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UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: You're watching...

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #2: ...BNC Morning Edition...

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It's hard to tell who has a gun at Fellowship of Wildwood church.

The men stand silently at the edge of the crowd, as worshippers shrug off their heavy winter coats and sip from paper coffee cups before the Sunday service.

Nicknamed the "sheepdog ministry," the group of about a dozen volunteers provide armed protection for congregants at the Baptist church west of St. Louis.

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Utah Senator Mitt Romney was the sole Republican to vote to convict President Trump on the first impeachment article, abuse of power. In explaining his vote, Senator Romney, clearly emotional, invoked his faith.

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A medieval sculpture of Jews engaged in obscene acts with a pig appears on the facade of a historical German church where Martin Luther preached. On Tuesday, a court rejected a Jewish man's efforts to remove the offensive sculpture.

The sculpture, in the eastern German city of Wittenberg, depicts a pig surrounded by a group of Jewish people, with some suckling at the animal's teats and one man looking under its tail. It's one of the most well-known examples of medieval folk art known as a Judensau — meaning Jews' sow — and is believed to date back to at least 1290.

When Bias Is Coded Into Our Technology

Feb 8, 2020

Facial recognition systems from large tech companies often incorrectly classify black women as male — including the likes of Michelle Obama, Serena Williams and Sojourner Truth. That's according to Joy Buolamwini, whose research caught wide attention in 2018 with "AI, Ain't I a Woman?" a spoken-word piece based on her findings at MIT Media Lab.

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"There are so many ways to get this right, they had to look for a way to get this wrong."

That's author L.L. McKinney's response to Barnes & Noble's "Diverse Editions" campaign. McKinney's most recent book, A Dream So Dark, is a sequel to A Blade So Black, a contemporary retelling of Alice in Wonderland with a black female lead.

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In 2016, Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton in Wisconsin by fewer than 23,000 votes. This time, a group that favors Trump is trying to ensure a repeat victory. And it's using something called geofencing to find churchgoing Catholics. For All Tech Considered, I spoke with Heidi Schlumpf of the National Catholic Reporter about what's going on.

An 1859 illustration of John A. Logan.
Gillam Bernhard / Library of Congress

One was sold away from her children. Another was freed and became a businessman. Others were freed only to be kidnapped and sold back into slavery. These are just a few stories of people who were enslaved in Illinois.

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We still don't have the final results of the Iowa caucuses.

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Financial firms may be discriminating against people based on where they went to college, a watchdog group says. In particular, the group found that a lender named Upstart appears to be charging higher interest rates on student loans to graduates of historically black or predominantly Hispanic colleges.

A lot more people are getting loans these days from a new breed of lenders known as fintechs, or financial technology firms. And some of these lenders factor in where loan applicants went to college.

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