Episode Information

One America?
Where We Live - with John Dankosky
Aired:
12/02/2008
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In this episode:

Racial progress (or not) in America since the Civil Rights Movement.

 

Episode Audio

51:59 minutes (24.95 MB)
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The upcoming inaguration of America's first black president has many people talking about the issue of race and how important the issue is in today's society.  

During his second term, in 1997, Bill Clinton formed a commission to address the problems of race in America.  Now, ten years after their report,  it's being released as a book by Yale University Press.  Titled "One America in the Twenty-first Century," it provides the first comprehensive assessment of racial progress (or lack thereof) since the heyday of the civil rights movement."  That's according to Rutgers History professor Steven Lawson - who edited the book for Yale University Press.    

But, unlike earlier presidential commissions on race during the Truman and Johnson administrations, this report had relatively little impact in the country.  Because, as Lawson puts it, "the reportt focuses on inter-racial dialogue and healing, instead of fundamental problems of continued racial injustice."  

Today on Where We Live, we'll look at the impact of the commission's work ten years later - and we'll hold the sort of dialogue on race the report calls for.   We’d like you to join the conversation.  How does race affect your daily life—or does it? How much should race inform our national conversation?  Are we entering a post-racial society? 

Leave qustions and comments below!


 
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race

Yes, race needs to be talked about!  I  wonder if we ARE closer to Dr. Kings dream,
40 years seems like a long time & there's still a big divide. Sad!  Yes we have elected
Mr. Obama to be President & perhaps that should be looked upon as progress?????
I live in rural Ct. & find racism alive.  Many Americans appear fearful, whether it's
ignorance, a fear of not getting "their share" or a combination.  I hate the blame circle
although I think it needs to be looked at to untangle the chains.  It seems like greed has
gotten out of proportions lately & when that fear sets in, I think it dominoes into many
other facets of despair.  In many ways I think America is perhaps not going backwards
but certainly needs to move in a healthier more forward direction. No, I don't believe this is ONE AMERICA!
 
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I find that race plays a

I find that race plays a bigger part in life now than it ever did. One word, ELECTION. I am German and Jamaican, democratic and a working mother and it still saddens me that when a conversation came up about our 08' election, the ONLY thing that stood out to a re-born non-voter, or unconcerned citizen was the races of the canidates.  It was rare for someone to look into both McCain or Obama and even be aware of where they stood on important issues that will effect our country.  Change is good and should be embrassed but properly. Which means that I do not agree with anyone that voted without researching BOTH candidates and they're policies and beliefs.  It opened my eyes though, even in my most nieve moments I never thought racism or issues of race were of the past, but I didn't know the degree of intensity was the same if not worse.

To each his own, but I can't see myself soley making a judgement about someone, social, political or otherwise based on their race. 

Dont get me wrong; it feels good to know that when I look my child in their eyes, and reassure them that they can be ANYTHING they want, it's now possible without the laughs, jokes, looks,  or the "voice" in the back of societies mind that says, "well, everything but the President of America".