- Gun Control: If Not Now, When? (The Root)
Aaron Alexis, the 34-year-old identified as the shooter in Monday’s assault, legally purchased the gun and ammunition he used in the attack. This was despite his having been arrested and cited for violent gun-related crimes in 2004 and 2010. Alexis was a former Navy Reserve officer with a documented history of mental illness. And the Associated Press reports that he suffered from various mental-health problems, including paranoia, sleep disorders and hearing voices. Yet Alexis gained employment with a federal contractor at the Navy yard and was apparently unimpeded in his purchase of firearms.
- Black Films Take Center Stage at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival (HuffPo Black Voices)
For decades black films, actors and directors have made the pilgrimage to the Toronto International Film Festival and they’ve become an integral part of the “Best Film Festival in the World.” This year the footprint black films and artists have left behind is resoundingly deeper, bigger and better than ever before. Especially when you consider that director Steven McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, a graphic and compelling allegory about slavery, has won the festival’s prestigious People’s Choice Award.
- What Obamacare’s Onset Means for Racial Justice (Colorlines)
Whatever the legal rationale, the blunt fact is that the court’s opinion and the ensuing political free-for-all leaves the growth of Medicaid in a lurch and places fundamental issues of fairness at the heart of Obamacare’s implementation. The program’s importance to communities of color is hard to overstate. As the Kaiser Family Foundation points out, “Medicaid enables Blacks and Hispanic Americans to access health care.” This statement is not an exaggeration: one out of three African Americans and Latinos receive healthcare through Medicaid.