Sopan Deb [Photo credit: Amy Lombard]

“When we think about choice, we think about agency,” said Sopan Deb, New York Times journalist and author of the new memoir “ Missed Translations: Meeting the Immigrant Parents Who Raised Me,” in a recent interview.

In “Missed Translations,” the culmination of a yearlong project that began in 2018 and took the author from New York to India, Deb peels back 30 years of a generational, cultural and familial struggle so well known to immigrant communities. On an adventure of reacquaintance with his parents, Deb learns for the first time who they really are. …


In 1860 Black bodies held captive on American soil represented a White collective real property value of more than $3 billion, roughly $93.5 billion today.

Currently, real property held by Black people in the U.S., typically the descendants of enslaved Africans, shows a cumulative national devaluation of $156 billion. That’s an average loss of $48,000 per home in majority-Black neighborhoods across America.

A sustained shortfall of this magnitude isn’t happenstance. It’s formulaic.

It’s through deliberate planning and organization that networks of powerful agencies incentivize people in authority. Then people in authority use bias and discrimination to bring about these property…


Patrick Earl Hammie’s “Romare Bearden,” a 2018 work, is part of the “Men of Change” exhibit. (Courtesy of the artist and Michael R. Barnes / Smithsonian Institution)

This story was first published by The Seattle Times on March 2, 2020.

More than 60 crates arrived at the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma, carrying precious cargo — the stories of Black men’s lives.

In its beautifully complex arrangement of modular scaffolding, framing, lighting and suspension, the “Men of Change: Power. Triumph. Truth.” exhibit illuminates the stories behind the stories we’ve read, about the men behind the men we know.

Visionaries like the late Bayard Rustin, an adviser to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., one of his inner circle. It was Rustin who first introduced the…


I know I’m a Debbie Downer and that’s fine, but put your (white) self in my shoes for a second.

Your hastags #americaisdead, #democracyisdead, and the like, are insensitive, dismissive, and racist.

For native Indian tribes and for Black people in this nation (American Descendants of Slaves), democracy has never existed, not even before yesterday's show of GOP (white) power.

So clutch your pearls over genocide and enslavement, rape and pillaging, burning and lynching, forced breeding and human trafficking, black codes and deconstruction of reconstruction, forced labor in DOC prison camps, gentrification and the systemic maintenance of separate and unequal…


Veronica Very Davis (left) Analisa Mitchell (center) Tammie Holmes (right) Photo courtesy WOW.

This story was first published at Wonder of Women International on February 1, 2020.

I received a gift of time in December. Time away, time to reflect, time to reset my intentions.

In a beautifully wooded and secluded mountainous region, north of Seattle, an intimate group of Black and Brown women from around the country got real with themselves and with one another.

The 4th annual Wonder of Women Winter Wonderland Retreat was themed — Release, Renew & Rise. The 2019 cohort was organized and facilitated by Veronica Very Davis. Rev. Dr. …


Sojourner Truth. Photo by Veronica Very Davis.

This story was first published in The Seattle Times on December 17, 2019.

At the age of 10, Hiawatha D. realized he was different in a way that wasn’t celebrated. It was this first jolting awareness of race — “finding out you’re black,” he calls it — that would set him on a path of art-making and expression centering the many shades of brown and reflecting the black diaspora.

This Seattle artist, whose work has been shown at MoPOP, Nordstrom, the University of Washington and in several juried shows, now brings his exhibit “Iconic Black Women: Ain’t I a Woman”…


Courtesy of Shaun Scott

This story was first published at South Seattle Emerald on October 3, 2019.

The Emerald sat down with Democratic Socialist candidate Shaun Scott who recounted his advancement in the King County Primary Election for District 4, edging out competitors Cathy Tuttle and Emily Myers in August. This is his first run for public office, which he said was funded substantially by democracy vouchers, a taxpayer-funded citywide program that allows voters to give up to $100 to their candidates of choice. Before running for election, Scott worked for U.S. …


Courtesy of Humanize My Hoodie

Two art projects explore the impact of gun violence, with a focus on mass shootings and police brutality.

This story was first published by Yes! Magazine on September 11, 2019.

Leslie Lee calls herself an “artivist.” It’s a word combining art and activism, rooted in community and Latinx art from the late 1990s, but Lee says she was doing this work before it had a name.

“I have always been interested in metaphor and content that addressed various social issues,” she says. …


Courtesy of Human Condition Magazine

This story was first published by South Seattle Emerald on August 26, 2019

Prompted by the state murder of Mike Brown in 2014, and the public outcry and protests that followed, Pecha Kucha Seattle, in collaboration with Northwest African American Museum and the Facebook group Seattle People of Color Salon, produced Pecha Kucha Vol. 56, #Ferguson, gathering hundreds of Seattleites to pour out their hearts. Pecha Kucha Vol. …


Helicopter parenting sparked an alternative movement to give children more independence — but not everyone can share that privilege.

Kids need balance and they need to be kids, but they also need to guard against “the sometimes crazy that happens out there, without limiting their opportunities to enjoy this great world we have been blessed to live in.” Photo by damircudi/Getty Images

This story was first published at YES! Magazine on August 12, 2019.

One Sunday in 2008, Lenore Skenazy and her then-9-year-old son, Izzy, the younger of two, visited Bloomingdale’s in bustling Manhattan, New York City. And then she left him there.

She helped launch a movement seen as a response to ubiquitous “helicopter parenting,” in which overprotective parents tightly control every one of their children’s activities.

Skenazy, a former reporter for the New York Daily News, says it took nerves to…

Afroliterati® (Carla Bell)

Carla Bell | rights | culture | arts @seattletimes @essence @thenorthstar2019 | Black mixed with Black. www.muckrack.com/carlabell

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