Podcast: Antiracist Voter

The murder of George Floyd created a moment of reflection and rededication to racial equality. But moments are ephemeral. Americans have a notoriously short attention span.

How do we maintain momentum so that the moment becomes a movement?

How do we translate the demands of protests into the domain of policy?

Antiracist ideas are activated in antiracist policy, especially in local elections.

We focus on criminal justice, economic justice, environmental justice, education, housing, health, immigration, and voting rights. We talk about problems, but we don’t stop there. We talk about solutions. Who is getting it right?

Can Truth and Reconciliation Work in Minneapolis?

Joy Marsh Stephens talks about the Minneapolis Truth and Reconciliation process.  We know the statistics. There are opportunity gaps in education. By the fourth grade, 50% of all Minnesota children reach reading proficiency, only 31% of Black children are reading proficiently. Minnesota enjoys an 83% high school graduation rate overall, but a 67% graduation rate among Black students. There is an income gap. The median household income among White Minnesotans is $71,415. But the median income among Black households is $34,879. The poverty rate for White residents is 7%, while the poverty rate is 28% for Black Minnesotans. There’s a housing gap. Black home ownership is 22%, about half the…

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The Most Powerful, Invisible Position in the State, with De’Vonna Pittman

A complete transcript of the interview can be found here: https://antiracistvoter.com/devonna-pittman/ Want to be an antiracist voter? Educate yourself, and then vote all the way down the ballot.   Who is your County Commissioner? Go ahead. Think about it. I’ll wait.   There’s a good chance that you have no idea who your county commissioner is. And yet, in Hennepin County, Minnesota, the county commission controls a $2.5-billion-dollar budget.   Criminal justice, economic justice, environmental justice, education, housing, health, and voting rights all begin with local governments.   Despite the importance of local elections, only 30% of eligible voters vote in local elections. In many local elections, voter turnout can be in the single digits. And, though 60% of eligible…

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Your Voting Rights, with Jorge Vasquez, Advancement Project

You can find a full transcript of the conversation here: https://antiracistvoter.com/jorge-vasquez/ Voting should be safe, simple, and exercised by every citizen. But, what happens when it is not? Pop quiz! When is the 2020 US election? If you said, Tuesday, November 3rd, ding, ding, ding, you’re right. I would have also accepted the answer, today, September 18, or any day between September 18 and November 3. Let me explain. In most states, you can request an absentee ballot today. When your absentee ballot arrives, you can go ahead and vote. In Minnesota, early, in-person voting starts September 18. You can vote in person at your county election office. And, some…

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A Solution to Undocumented Immigration, with Laz Ayala, Illegal the Project

For extended show notes, see https://antiracistvoter.com/laz-ayala. We don’t have an illegal immigration problem. We have a systemic illegal employment problem.   Picture this. It’s June 16, 2015. Lazaro “Laz” Ayala is standing in his living room. The speaker on the television is saying “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”  Laz, a successful businessman in southern Oregon, feels the sting of those words. Laz arrived in the United States as a 14-year-old boy, driven from his home by civil war in El Salvador.   The words on the television are dehumanizing for all immigrants….

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Racial Wealth Inequality and Black Asset Poverty, with Dr. Lori Latrice Martin

Extended shown notes and a full transcript can be found here: https://antiracistvoter.com/lori-latrice-martin/ The term systemic racism is redundant. Racism is systemic. It is a multi-level, multi-dimensional system of oppression.   On average, White families have a net worth of $171,000. The average Black family’s net worth is about one tenth of that, or $17,150. White families tend to have more assets, which can unlock opportunities such as education. Generally speaking, White families have the ability to absorb a greater financial blow such as an unexpected repair bill, healthcare costs, or loss of income.   Why is that?   Dr. Lori Latrice Martin takes us through the causes of the wealth gap and the consequences of racism. Dr. Martin is professor of…

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If We Want Better, We Have to Vote for Better, With Alberder Gillespie, Candidate Congressional District MN-04

For Alberder Gillespie, the time is now. Alberder Gillespie is running for a seat in Congress, representing Minnesota’s 4th Congressional District. She’s been involved with the Democratic–Farmer–Labor (DFL) party for more than 17 years. “It was my job to get more Democrats elected,” Alberder explains. “I can say now that there are Democrats in the Minnesota Senate, and our two State House Seats. I was involved, so much so, that I was inducted into the DFL Women’s Hall of Fame.” Alberder’s qualifications include: Inductee, Democratic–Farmer–Labor (DFL) Women’s Hall of Fame Former Leader, Girl Scouts of America Former Family Ministry Coordinator Former Board Member, Parent Teacher Association Former Member, School Board,…

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In Minneapolis, Police Training Wasn’t Enough, with Jesse Jannetta, Urban Institute

For full show notes, see https://antiracistvoter.com/jesse-jannetta/ Without accountability, trust is impossible. Picture it: A police department that dedicates itself to trust-building reforms. They partner with the best thought leaders in the country. They train all sworn officers in procedural justice. Procedural justice is the way police interact with the public, and how those interactions shape the public’s views of the police. All recruits receive the same training. They created a full-time Procedural Justice Unit. They weave procedural justice throughout the department’s training efforts. They train all officers on implicit bias. Implicit bias creates automatic association and stereotypes with groups of people. Implicit bias can have a strong influence on policing….

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Husniyah Dent Bradley, Candidate, MN House District 63B

Husniyah Dent Bradley was raised in South Minneapolis, in Minnesota House District 63B. She went to Minneapolis Public Schools – Standish Elementary School, Bancroft Elementary School, Folwell Junior High School, and North Community High School. Husniyah graduated from Spelman College in Atlanta, GA, with a B.S. degree in Chemistry in 1997. She worked as an Analytical Chemist for several years before pursuing a graduate degree from Mitchell Hamline School of Law in 2004. During law school, she interned with Minneapolis City Councilman Paul Zerby’s office, where she updated the rules for the Civilian Review Authority Board. She also interned at the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles and the Ramsey…

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How to Move Beyond Allyship, with Dawn Johnson, White Elephant Consulting

Awareness of racism is the first step. Dawn Johnson helps White women to move from awareness, to ally, to an accomplice, to activist. Dawn Johnson describes herself as a leader, speaker, coach, motivator, and “a dope-ass black woman entrepreneur.” Through her company “White Elephant Consulting,” she works with White women who are ready to support Black women. The Only Black Woman in the Room In her corporate career, Dawn often found herself as the first Black woman to step into a role. “I was the only Black woman in my company, in the very beginning,” she explains. “I got shipped to Minnesota after my 90-day training. The office was full…

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How to Fix the Police, with Seth W. Stoughton

After every tragic death at the hands of the police, America rings her collective hands. Speeches are made. Policies are proposed, debated, and defeated. New leadership is appointed. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. The problems are often blamed on a few bad apples. However, there is a saying, culture eats strategy for breakfast. A bad culture will beat a good cop every single time. But, here’s the big question. What actually works? What are the proven methods and strategies to hold police departments accountable, and to root out unwanted behavior? This is an urgent question. As federal, state, and local governments struggle to pass meaningful legislation, we need to understand what works….

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