Audio and Followup from My NPR Appearance


(cross-posted to Jack & Jill Politics)

In case you missed it, here is the audio from the Blogger Roundtable section of NPR's News & Notes, hosted by Farai Chideya. The show aired Wednesday August 22, 2007 at 1pm Eastern Time.

Bloggers at the table this week were:
Liza and I were in the NYC studio (thanks to John Guardo and Studio Engineer Manya for hookin us up), and Avery was in DC. We had originally planned to discuss four topics but had to drop Jose Padilla due to time constraints. The three we did get to were:
  • Black Hollywood doing major fundraisers for Clinton (Magic Johnson) and Obama (Oprah)
  • What Kind of Black Are We? (a WaPo story about the evolution of American black identity in light of voluntary immigration from the diaspora)
  • The death of Pfc. LaVena Johnson in Iraq
If the embedded player is not working, you can access the mp3 directly here or click on over to NPR and stream it here.



More on the topics.

Black Hollywood Fundraising
The jump off was an LA Times story I had suggested for discussion. (Big Up / Hat Tip to Negrophile's Twitter posts for putting me on to the story. Gotsta love the Interweb.) We discussed several angles including: the generational gap between Obama and Clinton supporters and how that mirrors the black political generational gap; the effectiveness of fundraising; the ability of events like these to translate into black votes

What Kind of Black Are We?
This was based on a recent-ish Washington Post article by Afi-Odelia E. Scruggs. We covered: the importance of the labels "black" vs. "African" vs. "African American"; the distrust and misinformation between descendants of American slaves and those from the diaspora who have come here later; and what is "black" anyway? who gets to define it?

LaVena Johnson
Pfc. LaVena Johnson died in Iraq two years ago. The military says it was a self-inflicted wound, but evidence points to sexual assault, beating, shooting and an attempt to burn her. For a heart-wrenching and frustrating version of events, check the video below of LaVena's father, Dr. Jack Johnson, at a Veterans for Peace Rally

The roundtable discussed the logical connection to the Pat Tillman case and if the blogosphere is an appropriate place to get this sort of issue out. Of course it is, and I hope we can collaborate as in the Jena 6 case to shed light and action on this tragedy