Julian Bond in 2010
Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Civil Rights Icon, 75, Gravitated Toward Media

Julian Bond is rightfully being mourned as an iconic civil rights leader, but he also gravitated toward the media. Judging from comments since his death on Saturday from vascular disease at age 75, media members likewise took to him.

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"He was typically wise, never boring, always eloquent," Kevin Merida, managing editor of the Washington Post, told social media friends on Sunday.

Greg Morrison, longtime member of the National Association of Black Journalists and now its treasurer, added, "Bond was known in Atlanta media as a great interview and local tv reporters tell of how he would sometimes crack a ribald joke when their photographers would shoot a 'reversal shot' after an interview, forcing the reporter to hold in laughter."

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Those were among Bond's surface contributions. Bond also supervised the revival of the NAACP's magazine the Crisis, hosted the syndicated "Julian Bond Show" and "America's Black Forum" television programs, wrote a syndicated column for the black press and narrated the acclaimed PBS series on the civil rights movement, "Eyes on the Prize."

Just released is "Black Leaders on Leadership: Conversations with Julian Bond," a book-and-video project with Phyllis Leffler whose interviewees include columnist and entrepreneur Armstrong Williams, Gwen Ifill of the "PBS NewsHour," the late Washington Post columnist William Raspberry, historian and journalist Roger Wilkins and Black Enterprise magazine founder Earl Graves Sr.

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In an unpublished tribute, Gary Gilson, who worked as a reporter and documentarian in New York, Minneapolis and Los Angeles, wrote about Bond's advice to members of a class that foreshadowed the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education.

"Julian Bond's death this past weekend coincided with the date of his 1970 commencement address to young people of color who had just completed training to become rookie news reporters around the country," wrote Gilson, a former executive director of the Minnesota News Council. "They were enrolled in Columbia University's Summer Program in Broadcast Journalism for members of racial minorities.

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"The students — average age 26, all college graduates, but hardly any who were previously motivated to enter a field in which they saw no one who looked like them — all had guaranteed jobs awaiting them, which is what made the competition to get into the program so intense.

"The program sprang from the mind of the former president of CBS News, Fred W. Friendly, who by then — right after the assassination of Martin Luther King — was serving as media adviser to the head of the Ford Foundation and, at the same time, as Edward R. Murrow Professor of Journalism at Columbia. He appointed me director of the faculty. I hired the finest broadcast journalists we could find, including network correspondents and producers.

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"Most of the students were black; a few were Puerto Rican, Mexican-American, Asian-American or American Indian. Standing before them in the auditorium at The Ford Foundation — which along with NBC and CBS had paid for the expensive program — Julian Bond had a simple message for them:

"'Go out . . . and slay the dragon!'

"By that he meant not that they should become propagandists for the civil rights movement, but that they should dig out and report the truth, as best they could determine it, and report that to their audiences. They could bring to the discipline of reporting the experiences they had had or had witnessed that were missing from the white perspective that set the agenda for news. . . ."

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Bond had been on the other side of the microphone. A co-founder of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in 1960, Bond was its communications director.

"Back in those days he considered media an instrument for getting real news of [the] southern civil rights struggle out in the face of much hostility from the southern press and indifference from much of the mainstream press," journalist Charles E. Cobb Jr., SNCC field secretary at the time, told Journal-isms by email on Monday.

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"Julian was creative and inventive in tackling this problem. And, of course, as SNCC communications director was vital to pumping out information about our work. One problem with the press today that I do know that he thought about was its tendency to let entertainment values drive the news. With regard to black life, that distorts it."

Asked for examples of Bond's creativity, Cobb wrote, "For one thing, SNCC was the only civil rights organization with a communications department focused on civil rights field work in the deep south more than national legislation and policy. Julian largely created this department.

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"And as a practical matter national reporters (print for the most part; tv is a whole 'nother story) had [to find] a way to make their way to local people as distinct from prominent 'leaders' for attribution in stories that probably would not have made it into their papers without this sort of validating attribution. The racist coverage of local papers could therefore be challenged by local black voices.

"Julian and his staff developed a list of newspaper reporters and editors above the Mason-Dixon line that would pick up SNCC Stories, and that put pressure on bureaus. For example, a story about Mississippi violence or discrimination filed by an AP or UPI reporter might result in the wire service's headquarters asking for more from their local reporter or stringer. SNCC was the only civil rights organization with a photographic department and that was an outgrowth of the communications department and specifically discussion between Julian and SNCC executive secretary James Forman."

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An NAACP bio outlines Bond's early journalistic leanings.

"While a student at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Bond helped found the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). He was elected Board Chairman of the NAACP in 1998.

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"Born in Nashville, Tennessee, Bond's family moved to Pennsylvania when he was five years old when his father, Horace Mann Bond, became the first African American President of Lincoln University (Pennsylvania), his alma mater. Bond attended Morehouse College in Atlanta and won a varsity letter for swimming. He also founded a literary magazine called The Pegasus and served as an intern at Time magazine. . . ."

Bond left Morehouse one semester short of graduation in 1961 to join the staff of a new protest newspaper, the Atlanta Inquirer. He later became the paper's managing editor.

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Veteran journalist Charlayne Hunter-Gault, a longtime friend of Bond's, said Sunday on the "PBS NewsHour" that Bond, M. Carl Holman and she would publish stories about protests that the white-owned newspapers would not cover. "He was always a wordsmith," (audio) she said. "He would take the narrative from the students and turn them into compelling stories."

Bond helped to create momentous civil rights legislation as part of the civil rights movement. But he also expanded the boundaries of free speech. Garrett Epps explained Monday in the Atlantic, "For most anyone else, Bond v. Floyd would be a lifetime's worth of legacy. In Julian Bond's obituaries, it is almost a footnote.

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"After the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, Bond was one of 11 African Americans elected to the Georgia House. But when he arrived at the state capitol on January 10, 1966, the House refused to seat him, at the urging of Representative James 'Sloppy' Floyd. SNCC had issued a statement opposing the war in Vietnam and expressing support for young men who refused induction into the military.

"America denied justice to black people at home, the statement argued; it was impossible to believe that its war would bring justice to the people of Asia. Asked about the statement on the radio, Bond had supported it. This meant, Sloppy Floyd said, that Bond could not take a legislator's oath to support the Constitution.

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" . . . Bond v. Floyd established that state legislatures must be open to all, and that political elites could not hide behind federalism to exclude representatives of whom they don't approve. Three years later, the Court extended that same principle to the U.S. Congress, which had excluded Harlem Representative Adam Clayton Powell, allegedly because he was corrupt.

"Today the principle that a legislator may criticize national policy, and even express sympathy for civil disobedience, seems so obvious as to need no explanation. But it was not so clear back then. . . ."

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TV One assembled some of Bond's media colleagues Monday for an edition of "News One Now With Roland Martin" devoted to Bond. They said his civil rights background gave his comments an authority and "a distinct point of view," as Joia Jefferson Nuri, a reporter on the "Julian Bond Show" and a senior producer of "America's Black Forum," said.

"Eyes on the Prize"

Callie Crossley, a host on WGBH-FM in Boston and a producer of "Eyes on the Prize," echoed that observation in a commentary Sunday.

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"Our boss Henry Hampton opened that first production meeting making two things clear —the name of the series would be 'Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years 1954-1965.' . . . Second, Henry declared the narrator of the series would be Julian Bond. Julian Bond? We were confused. Bond was not a professional narrator; in fact he'd never narrated so much as a public service announcement."

But Crossley also wrote, "Henry saw then what we didn't appreciate until much later — that Julian's first-hand experience would bring a depth and gravitas to the storytelling that would trump even the most skilled professional narrator. And his voice was a wonder — Julian's even, unhurried read was just the right note to accompany a story that was at turns horrifying, heartbreaking, and hopeful.

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"He gave no hint of partisanship; instead he was deliberately unobtrusive as he wove the narrative of the young Freedom Riders signing their wills before they went off to ride the segregated buses; the funeral of the 4 little girls killed by a bomb blast while in Sunday School; and the triumph of voting rights demonstrators at Selma joining the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. in the 50 mile walk to the capital of Montgomery. . . ."

When Bond became chairman of the NAACP in 1997, one of his charges was to oversee the remaking of the Crisis magazine, whose board had been disbanded by his predecessor, Myrlie Evers-Williams.

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"In Bond's view, the Crisis had become a 'consumer magazine whose articles could have appeared in Ebony. This magazine was once the place where you read about race, and the new board wanted to make it that again,' " James Bock reported at the time for the Baltimore Sun. Bond brought in Roger Wilkins, former editorial writer for the Washington Post and New York Times, and later a historian, to be chairman of the Crisis editorial board.

A "Slave Mistress"?

On Pacifica Radio's "Democracy Now!" on Monday, historian Taylor Branch said he agreed with Black Lives Matter activists who objected to a description of Bond's great-grandmother in a New York Times obituary as "the slave mistress of a Kentucky farmer." That was "instead of addressing the issue of the impossibility for consent as a slave, and the whitewashing of rape," host Amy Goodman said.

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However, Times columnist Charles M. Blow pointed out in a tweet that Bond used the "mistress" terminology himself.

"My grandfather and his mother were property, like a horse or a chair," the former NAACP chairman said while standing below a marble Abraham Lincoln, according to Daniel Malloy, writing for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 2013 about the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. 

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"As a young girl she'd been given away as a wedding present to a new bride. And when that bride became pregnant, her husband — that's my great grandmother's owner and master — exercised his right to take his wife's slave as his mistress. That union produced two children, one of them my grandfather."

Bond linked the circumstances of his grandfather's birth to the issue of colorism within the black community. "He used to confess that because of that terrible problem — crime — in the background of American history of — engender the most intimate moments that mixed slavery with rape, that there were a lot of problems about color within the black community," Branch said on "Democracy, Now!"

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"Julian told me that when he was in Morehouse College, he went to paper bag parties, where black people themselves in fraternities would nail a paper grocery bag up on the door, and if you were darker than the bag, you couldn't get into the party. So there was color discrimination within the race. And it's all a legacy of the great crime of slavery, which we still carry with us. . . ."

Bond would later apologize for an April 1977 sketch on "Saturday Night Live in which "I told Garrett Morris, one of SNL's original 'Not Ready for Prime Time Players,' that light-skinned blacks are smarter than dark-skinned blacks. Morris, who is darker skinned than I am, did a perfect double take. I felt squeamish then but did the skit anyway, and I feel uneasy about this joke even today. I believed it treaded dangerously on the fine line between comedy and poor taste. . . ."

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But, Bond added, "Comedy is crucial in our lives, especially political satire. The ability to make fun of life's vagaries helps us deal with them. That may be why there are so many black and Jewish comedians and why their presence on the air is so important."

Bond taught about 5,000 students over 20 years at the University of Virginia, the repository of more than 47,000 items of his personal papers.

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Upon his retirement from the school, a university interviewer asked him, "What would you like your tombstone to say?"

Bond replied, "I want to have a double-sided tombstone, so you have something on each side. And on one side, it's going to say 'Race Man.' A race man is an expression that's not used anymore, but it used to describe a man — usually a man, could have been a woman too — who was a good defender of the race, who didn't dislike white people, but who stood up for black people, who fought for black people.

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"I'd want people to say that about me. He was a race man. There's no implication here that white people are evil, just that black people are good people and they need somebody to fight for them, and I'm that person. The other side is going to say 'Easily Amused,' because I am easily amused. . . ."

Freddie Allen, National Newspaper Publishers Association: Civil Rights Icon Julian Bond Dies at 75

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Todd Steven Burroughs, The Root: Julian Bond's 'Comic' Stance on the Vietnam War

Benjamin F. Chavis Jr., National Newspaper Publishers Association: The Legacy of Julian Bond

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Neal Conan, NPR "Talk of the Nation": Founder Julian Bond Remembers 50 Years Of SNCC (April 15, 2010)

Callie Crossley, WGBH-FM, Boston: Remembering Civil Rights Icon Julian Bond, The Voice Of 'Eyes On The Prize'

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Chas Danner, New York: Civil Rights Icon Julian Bond Has Died

Debbie Elliott, NPR: Civil Rights Community Mourns Death Of Julian Bond

Garrett Epps, the Atlantic: The Courage of Julian Bond

Melanie Eversley, USA Today: Bond's quiet dignity commanded respect

Chad Griffin, the Advocate: Op-ed: LGBT Americans Found a Hero in Julian Bond

Charlayne Hunter-Gault, New Yorker: Postscript: Julian Bond (1940-2015)

Steve Inskeep, NPR: Eleanor Holmes Norton Remembers Julian Bond

KaiElz, Chicago Defender: Julian Bond who served our community has died

Daniel Malloy, Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Julian Bond tells of family’s slave history at March on Washington (Aug. 28, 2013)

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NAACP: NAACP Statement on the Passing of Chairman Emeritus Julian Bond

National Association of Black Journalists: The National Association of Black Journalists Mourns the Loss of Julian Bond

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Danielle Paquette, Washington Post: Family, friends and Obama remember Julian Bond

Rochelle Riley, Detroit Free Press:  No one worked harder for America than Julian Bond

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Sam Sanders, NPR: Remembering Civil Rights Icon Julian Bond

TV One: TV One's News One Now Devotes Entire Show to Passing of Civil Rights Leader Julian Bond

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The University of Virginia Magazine: A Conversation With Julian Bond

DeWayne Wickham, The Root: Julian Bond Flirted With Presidential Run in 1976

White Journalists Respond to Canards About J-Groups

"Fights over so-called political correctness have intensified, some say, to the point of being ridiculous (Donald Trump would agree).

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"Use the 'wrong word' and you will surely hear from a media watchdog committee at one of the many self-serving minority organizations."

So wrote Mike James, who is white and the author of NewsBlues, a Monday-through-Friday, subscription-only column about the television news business. James likes to take potshots at the journalist of color organizations, and he did so again Friday, calling them, along with the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, "exclusionary" and "racist."

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Journal-isms suggested in an email to James, "Since any journalist can join these groups, you might want to explain how these groups are 'exclusionary.' "

James replied, "They're not the Journalists Association.

"They're the Black Journalists, and the Asian Journalists, and the Gay & Lesbian Journalists, and the Hispanic Journalists.

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"I would argue that anyone who joins one of these groups and is NOT a Black or an Asian or a Gay or an Hispanic…is simply doing so to gain access to the group to sell them a product or a service."

Journal-isms asked two white journalists who are members of these groups to respond.

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Richard Holden, former executive director of the Dow Jones News Fund, received the Asian American Journalists Association's Leadership in Diversity Award Saturday at AAJA's San Francisco convention.

"Though I'm a Caucasian/Irish American journalist, I've been a card-carrying member of NABJ since 1984 and a charter member of AAJA," Holden wrote by email.

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"I've attended almost all of their conventions over the years, and I've never considered either a 'racist' organization.

"In my job of finding promising journalists of color for our intern programs, I was looking for the best kids available. I couldn't care less what their ethnicity was. And if I was 'profiting' from these conferences, it was much less expensive to meet all the kids at one session as opposed to, say, visiting 20 individual HBCU campuses.

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"And, if you want to be stereotypical, my Irish American Journalists Association (IAJA) would welcome members of any color to an annual conference in the Poconos, where we could eat potatoes and drink beer for a few days."

Joe Grimm, an editor-in-residence in Michigan State University's school of journalism and editor of a series of guides to cultural competence, wrote a piece in 2011 for the Poynter Institute, "Minority journalism groups are not members-only."

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He wrote by email of the NewsBlues item, "That characterization of such memberships is doubly wrong.

"I have just returned from the Asian American Journalists Association conference, which I have attended annually since 1991. The week before, I was at the National Association of Black Journalists.

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"I am a lifetime member of the Native American Journalists Association and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. I have attended several conferences of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. I also am a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and have belonged to other groups. I am a white male somewhere north of middle age. To say that these groups are exclusionary is flat wrong.

"AAJA’s J Camp paid for, and people of all races volunteered for, a week of mentoring high school students, also of all races.

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"All these journalism groups seat panelists and perspectives from all races and recognize their achievements.

"I joined these organizations as a recruiter for the Detroit Free Press, to gain access, yes. I left the newspaper seven years ago for the Michigan State University School of Journalism, but still remain active with these groups.

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"Is it for the access? You bet. I look forward to seeing some of my best friends, mentors, role models and colleagues. I get ideas, training, inspiration and fellowship that make me a better journalist and teacher.

"And here is the second mistake: We do not — should not — act only in our own self-interests when we join associations. I have endowed scholarships for students through two of these organizations and contribute to several programs. I help out. We don't join for what we can take away, but for what we can bring. Joining helped me fight for causes I believe in. One is fighting exclusion.

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"Another reason to join is to help people pursue their dreams. Helping others succeed is the greatest benefit of belonging."

Grimm's series of guides to cultural competence are on Amazon at <amzn.to/1LYSca0>.

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The complete NewsBlues item is in the Maynard Institute site's Comments section.

AAJA to Join With Vote Group in Las Vegas for '16

The Asian American Journalists Association plans to hold its 2016 convention in Las Vegas in hopes of attracting "thousands of people" to a forum with a presidential candidate, to be held in conjunction with the group Asian & Pacific Islander American (APIA) Vote.

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AAJA President Paul Cheung made the announcement at the group's closing convention banquet Saturday night at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in San Francisco. Next year's conference is scheduled for Aug. 10-14, 2016.

Christine Chen, the APIA Vote executive director, was present for the announcement. She told Journal-isms that her group was interested in holding the forum in a battleground state, was in talks with the Democratic and Republican national committees, expected the Asian ethnic press to attend and predicted there would be viewing parties. APIA is working with groups in 22 states, Chen said.

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Kathy Chow, executive director of AAJA, said that Cheung wanted "to really make an impact around the presidential vote" and that the organization began looking for partners for the 2016 convention to make that happen. 

The National Association of Black Journalists and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists are planning a joint convention Aug. 3-7, 2016, at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, where NABJ was founded in 1975. Plans to seek a presidential debate were scrapped, outgoing President Bob Butler told members at its convention this month in Minneapolis. The application to hold the debate would cost $8,000, in addition to $20,000 in other fees, he said.

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The Native American Journalists Association plans to meet with the Society of Professional Journalists in New Orleans at its Excellence in Journalism convention in September 2016, NAJA President Jason Begay confirmed Monday.

Chow said the AAJA convention, which ended Sunday, drew about 800 attendees.

Among the honorees were veteran New York broadcast journalist Ti-Hua Chang, who won the Lifetime Achievement Award; Emil Guillermo, longtime columnist who now writes about Asian American issues for the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, awarded the Dr. Suzanne Ahn Award for Civil Rights and Social Justice; and Richard Holden, who spent 25 years teaching with the Maynard Institute for Journalism Education, the Leadership in Diversity Award. Holden is former executive director of the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund.

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Chang said he had been fired from seven of 11 journalism jobs and urged the audience to "always tell the truth, no matter who is offended. Just be prepared to be fired — a lot."

Guillermo said that "discrimination has been the major disruption in our lives" and must be fought "by telling our stories."

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Holden said, "Diversity may not be on everybody's mind," but "don't give up the fight."

Charles Hallman, Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder: Post-NABJ reflections and perceptions

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Sally Ho, Associated Press: Surgeon general stands by comments on gun violence

Jeff Yang, CNN: The rise of Asian American leaders in tech

Randall Yip, AsAmNews: Surgeon General Vivek Murthy Doesn't Back Down on Gun Control

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Politico Has "Whitest Newsroom I Have Ever Worked In"

BuzzFeed and Mic.com are leading the online world in creating diverse newsrooms, while a Politico reporter who was removed from the masthead on Monday said of that publication, "It is the whitest newsroom I have ever worked in," Brendan James reported Monday for International Business Times.

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"Of the news outlets IBTimes spoke with, BuzzFeed is the only one that makes its diversity figures public: Its report last year, written by Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith, showed that among 185 editorial employees, 72.7 percent were white, 7.1 percent Asian, 6.0 percent black, 9.8 percent Latino and 3.8 percent were of mixed race. Women outnumbered men, 52.52 percent to 47.8 percent," James wrote.

He also wrote, "Next up is Mic.com, a news startup founded in 2011 explicitly geared toward millennials and, more recently, equipped with an 'Identities' vertical dedicated to issues of race and gender. Mic provided its newsroom figures to IBTimes, and they show that in a newsroom of 46 people, the staff is 74 percent white, 13 percent Asian, 11 percent black, and 2 percent Latino. Mic reported that the staff is 56 percent male and 44 percent female. . . ."

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Business Insider's masthead, on the other hand, shows an editorial staff of more than 200 that is roughly 90 percent white, 5 percent black and 5 percent Asian, James reported.

"Politico, whose editorial staff of nearly 200 runs both a digital and print operation, also did not respond to multiple requests for its numbers. Its masthead, like Business Insider's, is available on the site," James wrote.

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"The staff is roughly 92 percent white, 5 percent Asian, and 2 percent black. There is at least one Latino staffer and one of mixed-race. The gender difference is roughly 60 percent male to 40 percent female. Several Politico staffers said that the numbers tallied by IBTimes were accurate.

"Politico was founded by two veterans from the Washington Post, John F. Harris and Jim VandeHei, and styles itself as a leaner, savvier Post 2.0. But diversity is one area where Politico is far behind its predecessor, with its roughly 8 percent minority levels trounced by the Post at 31 percent. According to the masthead, there are two Asian editors, and no black staffer occupies any role senior to reporter.

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" 'It is the whitest newsroom I have ever worked in,' Politico labor reporter Mike Elk, who was removed from Politico's masthead himself Monday amid disagreements with management, told IBTimes.

" 'I think there are a lot more people of color on the business side and the HR side. That side gets it,' he added. 'But when it comes to the editorial side, it's white.' . . ."

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Shannon Bond, Financial Times: BuzzFeed looks to go viral in Japanese

"Brown Lives Matter" Too, but It's Complicated

"On July 21, 2012, police here killed Manuel Angel Diaz, an unarmed, 25-year-old man, when he ran away as officers approached," Haya El Nasser reported Thursday from Anaheim, Calif., for Al Jazeera America. 'The next day, 21-year-old Joel Acevedo was killed by police after he allegedly fired shots at them.

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"Days of protests followed as hundreds took to the streets. Most were peaceful but rocks were thrown, store windows broken and cars vandalized. Police fired rubber bullets into the crowd.

"The Anaheim riots received some national attention (pages A-11 and A-13 of The New York Times) but never reached the recent heights of similar events in Ferguson, Baltimore or Staten Island. Those protests sparked demonstrations in cities across the country and were covered around the clock by news networks, reviving the national dialogue over race relations.

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"Diaz and Acevedo are not household names. Michael Brown, Freddie Gray, Eric Garner are.

"The obvious distinction: Diaz and Acevedo are Latinos, while the other victims of recent police incidents were African American.

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"The starkly different response to police shootings of minorities and deaths of minorities in police custody raises a question that is being asked more and more by activists and experts every day: Don’t brown lives matter, too?

"But the reasons why the deaths of Latinos have not sparked the same national outrage as those of blacks are tangled in a complex web of history, debate over immigration and lack of government statistics on the number of brown lives lost at the hands of police. . . ."

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Kristen Hare, Poynter Institute: St. Louis professor on journalism lessons from Ferguson: 'The impact is ongoing'

Oliver Laughland and Jon Swaine, the Guardian: 'I dream about it every night': what happens to Americans who film police violence?

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AJ Vicens, Mother Jones: Native Americans Get Shot By Cops at an Astonishing Rate (July 15)

After Journalist's Killing, Has Mexico Hit Bottom?

"On July 31, 2015, five people were murdered execution style in an apartment in the middle-class Mexico City neighborhood of Narvarte," Francisco Goldman wrote Friday for the New Yorker. "All five were shot in the head with a nine-millimetre pistol. Two of the victims, thirty-one-year-old photojournalist RubĂŠn Espinosa and thirty-two-year-old activist Nadia Vera, were known critics of Javier Duarte, the governor of Veracruz.

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"Each had reported receiving threats and experiencing incidents of serious intimidation in that state, and they had fled in recent months, separately, to Mexico City, believing that city to be a safe haven amidst the terrible violence of contemporary Mexico.

"The murders of the journalist and the activist — along with those of three other women, including Vera's apartment mates, Yesenia Quiroz, age eighteen, and Mile Virginia Martín, thirty-one, and the woman who cleaned their apartment, Alejandra Negrete, forty — have provoked an international outcry that seems to be intensifying by the day.

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"In the words of the digital news site SinEmbargo.com, the multiple homicides have 'put pressure on Mexico in a way that hasn't been felt since Ayotzinapa' referring to the still unresolved forced disappearances of forty-three students from the Ayotzinapa teacher's college, in Guerrero state, last September. Nowadays, here in Mexico, it seems that one previously unthinkable or hard-to- credit atrocity or corruption scandal follows upon another. . . ."

Goldman also wrote, "Whenever news of yet another horrifying murder or massacre somewhere in the country breaks, my friends and I often find ourselves asking if Mexico has 'hit bottom' yet. Or we ask what kind of crime it will take for Mexico to finally hit bottom. . . ."

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Despite Degree, Wealth Gap Greets Black, Hispanic Grads

"Even with tuition shooting up, the payoff from a college degree remains strong, lifting lifelong earnings and protecting many graduates like a Teflon coating against the worst effects of economic downturns," Patricia Cohen reported Sunday for the New York Times.

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"But a new study has found that for black and Hispanic college graduates, that shield is severely cracked, failing to protect them from both short-term crises and longstanding challenges.

" 'The long-term trend is shockingly clear,' said William R. Emmons, an economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis and one of the authors of the report. 'White and Asian college grads do much better than their counterparts without college, while college-grad Hispanics and blacks do much worse proportionately.'

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"A college degree has long been recognized as a great equalizer, a path for minorities to help bridge the economic chasm that separates them from whites. But the report, scheduled to be released on Monday, raises troubling questions about the ability of a college education to narrow the racial and ethnic wealth gap. . . ."