History

  • 02.14.18

    Ben Jealous Reminds Us to ‘Agitate!’ on Frederick Douglass’ 200th Birthday

    A few weeks before his death, 77-year-old Frederick Douglass was asked what advice he would give to a young black American. "Agitate! Agitate! Agitate!" was his reply....

    A few weeks before his death, 77-year-old Frederick Douglass was asked what advice he would give to a young black American.

    “Agitate! Agitate! Agitate!” was his reply.

  • 04.07.17

    Syria's War: Who is Fighting and Why

    This video by Vox describes the complex history and alliances of the Syrian civil war. It begins with the Arab Spring protests in 2011, then describes the transition through multiple foreign powers backing the different sides, the rise of ISIS, through to the decision by the Trump administration to bomb forces rel...

    This video by Vox describes the complex history and alliances of the Syrian civil war.

    It begins with the Arab Spring protests in 2011, then describes the transition through multiple foreign powers backing the different sides, the rise of ISIS, through to the decision by the Trump administration to bomb forces related to Assad - "This is the first time that the United States has directly attacked the Assad regime."

  • 01.01.17

    Social Security: Frequently Asked Questions

    This article from the Social Security Administration answers some key questions that many have about Social Security. The questions range from historical questions: Q: When did Social Security Start? Q: Is it true that life expectancy was less than 65 back in 1935, so the Social Security program was designed in...

    This article from the Social Security Administration answers some key questions that many have about Social Security. 

    The questions range from historical questions:

    Q: When did Social Security Start?

    Q: Is it true that life expectancy was less than 65 back in 1935, so the Social Security program was designed in such a way that people would not live long enough to collect benefits?

    Through questions about its revenues and future viability:

    Q: Has Social Security ever been financed by general tax revenues?

    Q: How much has Social Security paid out since it started?

    Q:Has Social Security always taken in more money each year than it needed to pay benefits?

    To logistical questions:

    Q: Is there any significance to the numbers assigned in the Social Security Number?

    Q:Are Social Security numbers reused after a person dies?

  • 01.01.17

    Immigration and Naturalization Law Through The Years

    This article from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services gives an overview of immigration law in the United States from the initial "relatively free and open immigration" during the 18th and early 19th centuries, through the changes to the policy based on internal views on immigrant in the United States, and the...

    This article from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services gives an overview of immigration law in the United States from the initial "relatively free and open immigration" during the 18th and early 19th centuries, through the changes to the policy based on internal views on immigrant in the United States, and the changes that were in response to international events like World War I, World War II, and September 11.

    Each legal element changed the makeup and experience of immigrants entering the United States, as well as the focus of immigration services. The USCIS states that after 9/11, "The emphasis of American immigration law enforcement became border security and removing criminal aliens to protect the nation from terrorist attacks. At the same time the United States retained its commitment to welcoming lawful immigrants and supporting their integration and participation in American civic culture."

  • 03.29.16

    Reparatory Justice

    On March 29 2016 Danny Glover gave a speech to the OAS countries. In it, he reflects on his life, his heritage and the experience of Afro-Descendants - not only in the United States but across the world. "In my country, the United States of America, which is the richest and arguably most developed country of the...

    On March 29 2016 Danny Glover gave a speech to the OAS countries. 

    In it, he reflects on his life, his heritage and the experience of Afro-Descendants - not only in the United States but across the world.

    "In my country, the United States of America, which is the richest and arguably most developed country of the world, there are forty-million Afro Descendants, many of Caribbean and Latin American heritage. On a daily basis, U.S. news is inundated with disturbing and saddening stories of Black women and men, particularly the young, being killed by law enforcement officers and vigilantes or being incarcerated; of young black people facing high rates of under and unemployment, poverty, lack of access to education and health care, and consequently succumbing to high rates of illness and death. The current state of democracy, justice, and socio-economic development for Afro Descendants in the United States is disappointing and tragic."

    He ends his speech with three calls: a call for respect, a call for justice, and a call for development.

  • 10.21.14

    Dr. Cornel West on Icons of African American History

    A week after his arrest during protests in Ferguson, Dr. Cornel West, Union Theological Seminary professor, and author of (in dialogue with and edited by Christa Buschendorf) Black Prophetic Fire (Beacon Press, 2014), talks about his latest work, a reexamination of the lives and legacies of leading black activists ...

    A week after his arrest during protests in Ferguson, Dr. Cornel WestUnion Theological Seminary professor, and author of (in dialogue with and edited by Christa Buschendorf) Black Prophetic Fire (Beacon Press, 2014), talks about his latest work, a reexamination of the lives and legacies of leading black activists Frederick Douglass, W. E. B. Du Bois, Martin Luther King Jr., Ella Baker, Malcolm X, and Ida B. Wells – and what today’s civil rights activists need to remember about them.

    This interview originally appeared on WNYC on October 21, 2014.

  • 01.17.11

    Ike's Warning Of Military Expansion, 50 Years Later

    "On Jan. 17, 1961, President Dwight Eisenhower gave the nation a dire warning about what he described as a threat to democratic government. He called it the military-industrial complex, a formidable union of defense contractors and the armed forces." This article puts his speech into perspective considering the bu...Read More