The Confederate monument on South Third Street at the University of Louisville
Michael Clevenger/Courier-Journal

A 121-year-old Confederate monument at the University of Louisville is coming down, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and university President James Ramsey announced Friday. The editor of the Courier-Journal, the city's daily newspaper, credits an op-ed piece in his paper.

On Twitter, Ricky L. Jones, chair of Pan-African Studies at the school who wrote the op-ed, couldn't have been happier. A tweeter wrote, "Ppl need to remember the Confederacy LOST!!" and Jones replied, "It lost AGAIN today!!!!"


Another wrote, "Not only that they lost. But they committed absolute treason in defense of an abominable practice."

"Yes! YES!!!!" responded Jones. "I'M SO F——' HAPPY RIGHT NOW!!!! #TearDownThisStatue "The South falls AGAIN! It's a celebration (in Rick James' voice)!"


Jones had written April 21, "For 20 years, I have walked by that towering granite and bronze eyesore glorifying the nadir of America’s past. For 20 years, I have listened to cries for its removal. For 20 years, we have been plagued by confusion, compromises, excuses and half measures. One hundred twenty-one years is too long. Twenty years is too long. Twenty more weeks is too long. We’ve waited long enough. It's time for the statue to go. . . ."

The Courier-Journal's Phillip M. Bailey reported Friday that Fischer and Ramsey "gathered at the monument across from the Speed Art Museum on Third Street, joined by several city and university officials and U of L students.


" 'I recognize that some people say this monument should stay here because it is part of history, but I also appreciate that we can make our own history,' Fischer said.

"The decision came less than two weeks after Ricky L. Jones, professor and chair of Pan-African Studies at U of L, wrote a column in the Courier-Journal calling for the mayor and university to take the monument down. " 'We don't consider ourselves in Louisville to be part of the South,' Fischer said in an interview after the announcement. "Both Fischer and Ramsey’s offices said they had been working on moving it for several weeks. "Jones said that whatever motivated the decision, he is elated the monument will no longer be on campus. He said generations of U of L students, faculty and staff have opposed the statue's existence. . . ." Neil Budde, executive editor of the Courier-Journal, told Journal-isms by telephone that the newspaper had not editorialized on the issue, having cut back on editorials and relying more on op-ed pieces such as that by Jones. Bailey also wrote, "Kentucky was a slave state but never joined the Confederacy. But many Kentuckians fought for the South. . . ."


Jarvis DeBerry, | the Times-Picayune: Monuments battle is latest in war between cities and states (April 6)

Editorial, Yale Daily News: Rename Calhoun College (Sept 2, 2015)

Emma Dumain, Post and Courier, Charleston, S.C.: Jim Clyburn on Congressional vote to keep Confederate flag at The Citadel: “I will not let this rest”


David A. Graham, the Atlantic: The Stubborn Persistence of Confederate Monuments, Cont'd

Iann Millhiser, ThinkProgress: 8 States Still Have Holidays Celebrating The Confederacy


Courtland Milloy, Washington Post: The ugly truth about Confederate memorials (April 12)

Yale Daily News: Calhoun, Murray & Franklin: Community condemns decisions

‘We Will Fill the Space With Something New’

Joy Reid will host a new weekend program airing Saturdays and Sundays 10 a.m.-noon ET on MSNBC, filling the slot vacated by Melissa Harris-Perry, the network announced on Friday.


Melissa did a show that was incredibly valuable,” Reid said in a news release. “Instead of trying to replace it, we will fill the space with something new; something compelling, and something that adds to the conversation.”

The announcement said, "Reid will tackle the most important news and political topics of the week and, along with a rotating panel of journalists, will explore how these issues shape the country. The program will premiere next Saturday, May 7 at 10 a.m. ET." The show has not yet been named, MSNBC spokesman Mark Kornblau told Journal-isms.


“MSNBC viewers crave not only the facts, but also in-depth discussion and analysis from a range of perspectives,” MSNBC President Phil Griffin said in the release. “There is no one better equipped than Joy to lead this new project, and create a place for the kind of unique discussion our audience has come to expect.”

Reid also said, “We are a country of too much talk and too little conversation. We talk past our invisible divides of race and class, ideology and region rather than taking them on. Saturday and Sunday mornings will be a place to talk politics and do good journalism while bringing diverse, smart, and accomplished voices to the table."


Lisa de Moraes added for Deadline Hollywood, "It’s been a little more than a year since MSNBC took The Reid Report off its weekday daytime lineup, same time it yanked Ronan Farrow Daily — both of which were ratings challenged, replacing them with MSNBC Live with Thomas Roberts in the 1-3 PM ET block as part of a shift toward breaking news and away from issue-talk. Since then, Reid has been serving as a correspondent at the network.

"More recently, two months ago Harris-Perry and MSNBC confirmed she would not return to the cable network, after an email in which she denounced MSNBC’s decision to pre-empt her show for election-cycle coverage was leaked to the New York Times.


"In a tweet, Harris-Perry wrote: 'Farewell #Nerdland. Inviting diverse new voices to table was a privilege. Grateful for years of support & criticism.' Nerdland was her nickname for fans of her wonkish weekend political program. . . ."

Harris-Perry, author, professor and founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Center at Wake Forest University, now writes for The center is "an interdisciplinary center that supports and generates innovative research around gender and race in pursuit of a national dialogue and positive outcomes."


Suit Alleges N.Y. Times Favors Young, White Staffers

"Mark Thompson, the chief executive of the New York Times and former director-general of the BBC, is facing a multimillion-dollar class action lawsuit alleging that he introduced a culture of 'deplorable discrimination' based on age, race and gender at the newspaper," Rupert Neate reported Thursday for the Guardian.


"The lawsuit, filed on behalf of two black female employees in their sixties in New York on Thursday, claims that under Thompson’s leadership the US paper of record has 'become an environment rife with discrimination.'

"The class action lawsuit, seen by the Guardian, alleges that the Times, which promotes its liberal and inclusive social values, preferentially favours its 'ideal staffer (young, white, unencumbered with a family)' at the expense of older female and black employees.


“ 'Unbeknownst to the world at large, not only does the Times have an ideal customer (young, white, wealthy), but also an ideal staffer (young, white, unencumbered with a family) to draw that purported ideal customer,' the lawsuit, which the women’s lawyer said could be extended to up to 50 similar alleged victims, states. 'In furtherance of these discriminatory goals, the Times has created a workplace rife with disparities.'

"Eileen Murphy, the Times’ head of communications, said: 'This lawsuit contains a series of recycled, scurrilous and unjustified attacks on both Mark Thompson and Meredith Levien. It also completely distorts the realities of the work environment at the New York Times. We strongly disagree with any claim that The Times, Mr. Thompson or Ms. Levien have discriminated against any individual or group of employees. The suit is entirely without merit and we intend to fight it vigorously in court.'


"The lawsuit, filed at the US district court of southern New York, claims that since Thompson became CEO of the Times in 2012, after eight years as director-general of the BBC, the paper’s advertising staff has been 'systematically becoming increasingly younger and whiter.' . . . "

Levien has been the Times’ executive vice president and chief revenue officer since April 2015.


Survey: Latinos Eager to Vote Against Trump

"The Republican Party’s image, already quite negative, has slipped since last fall," the Pew Research Center reported on Thursday. "Currently 33% of the public has a favorable impression of the Republican Party, while 62% have an unfavorable view. Unfavorable opinions of the GOP are now as high as at any point since 1992. . . ."


The slippage is especially pronounced among Latinos, who, according to the Latino Decisions research firm, are prepared to turn out in record numbers against front-runner Donald Trump.

"Over the course of his campaign, Trump’s rhetoric against 'illegal immigration' has helped to boost him to the front-runner position among the Republican candidates," Adrian Pantoja reported Wednesday for Latino Decisions.


"Political pundits and party elites have offered speculations on the effects of his campaign on Latino voters and the prospects for a Republican victory this November. The speculation can now be cast aside as the reality of Trump’s effect is now documented by the results of our first national tracking poll on the Latino electorate. Latino Decisions in partnership with America’s Voice recently released the results of a nation-wide survey of 2,200 registered Latino voters.

"Respondents were asked to rate [Hillary] Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, and John Kasich on a four point favorability scale ranging from very favorable to very unfavorable. Among the five candidates, Donald Trump had the worst favorability rating, with a 79% 'very unfavorable' rating. In contrast Cruz and Kasich had 'very unfavorable' ratings of 34% and 18% respectively. That is a dramatic 45-point gap between Trump and Cruz, and 61 points between Trump and Kasich.


"The animus Latinos feel toward Donald Trump is evident in our poll, despite his claim that 'The Latinos love Trump, and I love them.' Clearly majorities of Latinos oppose Donald Trump. The question is, will Latinos turnout in record numbers against Trump? Has Trump’s campaign damaged the Republican Party name among Latino voters?

"The results of the survey unequivocally answer yes to both of these questions. . . .


"Nearly three out of four Latino voters believe the GOP has shunned Latino voters, with 42 percent agreeing that the party 'doesn’t care too much about Latinos' and 31 percent agreeing the party is 'sometimes hostile toward Latinos.' While Trump may fall short of securing the nomination, the damaging effect of his campaign on Latino voters is unlikely to be repaired before November. . . ."

Campbell Brown, Politico Magazine: Why I Blame TV for Trump

Editorial, Native Sun News: Why Native Sun News endorses Hillary Clinton

Lauren Gambino, the Guardian: Journalist who profiled Melania Trump hit with barrage of antisemitic abuse


Jason Johnson, The Root: Africa? What Africa? Donald Trump Barely Mentions Entire Continent During Foreign Policy Speech

Ruben Navarrette Jr., Washington Post Writers Group: Picking Fiorina was a clever move by Cruz


Andrés Oppenheimer, Miami Herald: Latinos will save America from Trump

Clarence Page, Chicago Tribune: Trump 2.0? Don't bet on it

Eugene Robinson, Washington Post: The case for a Clinton-Warren ticket

Researcher Finds New Level of Anti-Muslim Bias

"In the 1970s, Jack Shaheen, the son of Lebanese Christian immigrants, began his groundbreaking research into how Arabs and Muslims are demonized in American pop culture and, from the start, it was an unwelcome pursuit," Hannah Allam reported Tuesday from the McClatchy Washington bureau.


"The first academic paper Shaheen wrote on the subject languished, unpublished, for three years. His first book manuscript racked up dozens of rejection letters. Smear campaigns in academic circles painted him as a propagandist. And the work was lonely — nobody else cared about how Rudolf Valentino launched the stereotype of the swarthy, desert-dwelling predator with his 1921 film 'The Sheik.'

"Still, Shaheen pressed on in what became a lifelong mission to expose what he considers racist and dangerous distortions of Arabs and Muslims. Over the past 40 years, he’s addressed the topic in three books, in a documentary, on two Hollywood film sets and in countless news interviews.


"And yet Shaheen paused when he received an invitation to speak last month about media depictions of Muslims before a small gathering on Hilton Head Island, the picturesque beachfront community in South Carolina where he lives with his wife, Bernice. He eventually accepted, but for the first time in his four-decade campaign, he considered saying no.

“ 'I just turned 80 and I didn’t want to have to confront all this bigotry,' Shaheen said by telephone from the island. 'I’ve never had anxiety speaking about this issue. I’ve never felt this way before. That’s how strong this bigotry is. There was prejudice before, yeah, but this is bigotry.'


"In all his years of research, Shaheen said, he’s never seen anti-Muslim prejudices this intense, including in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. The current hostility toward Arabs and Muslims, he said, is reflected in and reinforced by on-screen portrayals that haven’t evolved much over the years. . . ."

Hannah Allam, McClatchy: Muslims still searching for their ‘Cosby Show’ moment

Obama Surprises College Reporters, Takes Questions

"For most journalists who cover the White House regularly, the chance to question President Obama comes rarely, and the opportunity for a one-on-one interview with him almost never," Julie Hirschfeld Davis reported Thursday for the New York Times.


"Not so for a group of college journalists visiting the White House on Thursday, who were treated to a surprise presidential news conference in the White House briefing room. One of them even scored a tentative date to interview Mr. Obama on his campus next month. . . ."

Among those sharing the news on social media were Phillip Jackson of Hampton University, web editor of the Hampton Script, and Daniella Oropeza, correspondent for Newswatch Ole Miss. "Pending the Supreme Court's decision, will this administration take further action on immigration?" Oropeza asked.


Obama replied, in part, "the only way to have a permanent solution to this problem is for the kind of legislation to pass that we saw the Senate actually pass on a bipartisan basis that would continue to strengthen border security, but also give a pathway to citizenship for those who had been here for quite some time."

Esther Cepeda, Washington Post Writers Group: Low-income, ‘first-gen’ college students benefit from an extra boost


Remarks by the President to College Reporters (transcript)

Ferrier, Gonzalez Win Reynolds Fellowships

Michelle Ferrier, associate dean for innovation at the Scripps College of Communication at Ohio University, and Alejandro Gonzalez, development and innovation director for 14ymedio, are among eight winners of fellowships awarded for the 2016-2017 academic year by the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute, the institute announced Thursday.


Gonzalez, who will be a residential fellow, plans to work on low-bandwidth technology to amplify the distribution of the news organization’s content in Cuba.

The project will also develop revenue streams that directly leverage users instead of third-party advertisers, the announcement said.


Ferrier, a nonresidential fellow "will create and test a hybrid accelerator model to support student-professional media startups for underserved and underrepresented communities. She will also build a platform for collaboration among historically black higher education institutions with graduate programs in media and journalism entrepreneurship. Ferrier will build on her work through the Media Deserts Project."

Residential fellows spend eight months on the University of Missouri campus.

Nonresidential fellows explore their ideas from their home or office, with an occasional visit to campus.


White Publisher Uses Name of Historic Black Paper

"Newspapers still matter," Melvin B. Miller, editor and publisher of the Bay State Banner, wrote on Monday.


"In fact, the names publishers select for their newspapers are still very important. The publisher of the Boston Courant has brazenly decided to call his weekly 'The Boston Guardian,' a name that is sacrosanct in Boston’s African American Community. Yet, there is no journalistic achievement of the Boston Courant to warrant the appropriation of such an historic appellation. The publisher’s decision represents a profound insensitivity both to Boston’s African American community and the history of Boston journalism. . . ."

David Jacobs launched the newspaper in April after recently closing his previous newspaper, the Boston Courant, which covered several downtown neighborhoods, Kathleen Conti added Monday in the Boston Globe.


"Jacobs said he was dumbfounded by Miller’s assertion, and was surprised that Miller did not reach out to him before his online post," Conti wrote.

“ 'My mouth dropped open,' Jacobs said. 'That I committed some sort of sacrilege, that is not the way I operate and that’s not the sort of person I am.'


"The Guardian newspaper was founded in 1901 by William Monroe Trotter at a time when black-owned Boston newspapers were flourishing, covering African-American issues that were ignored by mainstream newspapers. The Guardian published until the mid 1950s.

"Trotter, who was raised in Hyde Park, was a Harvard graduate and activist for civil rights who admired William Lloyd Garrison, editor of The Liberator, an abolitionist newspaper published in Boston in the 1800s. He used the Guardian to shed light on injustices against African-Americans, including segregation.


"Another African-American Boston newspaper in the late 1800s was The Boston Courant, the name Jacobs used for his previous weekly, founded in 1995. He said he did not hear any objections to his use of the Courant name at the time, and he questions the controversy over the Guardian name.

"Jacobs said he wasn’t concerned about using Boston Guardian because the original hasn’t been published for more than 60 years and because the name is not trademarked. Asked if he would consider changing it, Jacobs replied, 'Heck no.' . . . ."


Barbara Lewis, director of the Trotter Institute for Black History and Culture at the University of Massachusetts Boston, commented under Miller's Banner article, "I was asked by a Globe columnist to consider what Trotter might say about this newspaper name controversy if he were alive today.

"First, he would say, it's more than about a name. Legacy and representation are at issue here as well as who gets to silence and replace whom, at what cost for what return. Both names that Jacobs chose for christening his two papers, the Boston Courant and the Boston Guardian, became famous from the 19th into the 20th century, as the political voice of a deliberately disenfranchised community in Boston, a city that likes to present an image of liberality to the world.


"The recently launched, Boston Guardian, which is backed by multiple investors, many from the development world, is targeted to a moneyed clientele in some of the city's tonier zip codes. So, Trotter, who was known for not biting his tongue, might well ask, is this reworked Boston Guardian a la Jacobs and his development cronies, coming out following a legal loss, a warmed-over gentrification rag?"

Teen Vogue Examines Cultural Appropriation

Borrowing from other cultures has never been trendier — or more taboo," Elaine Welteroth wrote April 21 for Teen Vogue.


"From afros to cornrows, henna to headdresses, cultural appropriation is a trending topic on the tips of tongues everywhere. (To get caught up on the conversation, look no further than Amandla Stenberg's brilliant, critically acclaimed video Don't Cash Crop My Cornrows where she breaks it all down.)

"The countless call-outs, egregious offenses, and heated debates swirling on social media ignited an important dialogue within the Teen Vogue office: Where does cultural appropriation end and cultural appreciation begin?


"We asked seven real girls — with epic hair! — to weigh in. Here, in their own words, inspiring young women reclaim their beauty looks with an ode to the cultures they came from. . . ."

Short Takes

"It’s the end of an era. Harris Publications, formerly the home of XXL magazine, is shutting down," Alvin Aqua Blanco reported Friday for He also wrote, "Many a noted writer in the Hip-Hop space, including the author of this post, cut their teeth at Harris publications titles. In September 2014, XXL was purchased by Townsquare Media from Harris, and though initially it was to become strictly an online entity, it continues to publish a magazine quarterly. . . ."


"During his time at ESPN’s now-defunct Grantland, Jonathan Abrams authored definitive oral histories on sporting events as iconic as the 2005 Pacers/Pistons brawl," Christian Holub reported Friday for Entertainment Weekly. "Then, in March, he released his first book, Boys Among Men, a thorough account of the generation of basketball players who went straight from high school to the NBA. On Friday, Abrams used Twitter to reveal his next project: a book-length oral history of The Wire. . . ."

"District of Columbia Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton on Thursday fired off a letter to the Comptroller General of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) demanding a new report detailing federal advertising contracts and subcontracts with minority-owned newspapers and media companies," Stacy M. Brown reported Friday for the National Newspaper Publishers Association.


As the profile of the White House Correspondents' Association has risen, "contributions to the association have jumped — from 2009 to 2013, the take increased by 162 percent, to $532,555 — but scholarship payouts have inched only 10 percent higher, according to the WHCA’s tax filings," Luke Mullins reported Thursday for Washingtonian magazine. "Put another way, the association spent almost 60 percent of its revenue on scholarships in 2009, but just 26 percent in 2013. . . ." The association's annual dinner is to be telecast on C-SPAN at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. Eastern time Saturday, and at 6 a.m. Sunday.

A 1971 interview with Playboy magazine proved to be the undoing of a California bill to proclaim May 26, 2016, as John Wayne Day, Don Thompson reported Friday for the Associated Press. “I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don’t believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people,” he told the magazine. In addition, "Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego, cited his comments defending white Europeans’ encroachment on American Indians who Wayne once said 'were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves.' . . .”


"What’s your favorite photo you’ve ever taken?" Roshan Nebhrajani asked Miami Herald photographer Carl Juste in an interview published Monday in South Florida's the New Tropic. . . . "One of my favorites is one I did in Haiti called 'The Mask.' It’s a photo of a man wearing a mask on his face made out of a red T-shirt. What makes it my favorite is the both abundance of color and the man’s stare. In the picture, all you see is the man’s eyes, and its ambiguity poses more questions than it answers — it’s like the Haitian Mona Lisa. [above]"

"The Denver Post wants to cut another 26 jobs, or nearly 20 percent, from its newsroom staff in the daily newspaper's second round of buyouts in the past 12 months," Greg Avery reported Thursday for Denver Business Journal.


David Cazares, formerly web and distribution editor, arts reporter and podcast host at Minnesota Public Radio, starts May 9 as editor for health/environment and arts/culture at St. Louis Public Radio, Executive Editor Shula Neuman confirmed for Journal-isms on Friday.

"Since nearly losing my life after lapsing into a coma last Christmas, 'silent killer' now has powerful meaning to me," Eugene Kane, a former columnist for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, wrote in the Journal Sentinel on Friday. Kane also wrote, "I was almost a victim of this particular killer, but now consider myself a survivor who briefly crossed over to the other side, yet managed to return and stand in the light. I vow to cherish each new day as a mark of success over that darkness, and to make sure the people in my life know how much I cherish them — and how much I want them to take care of themselves. And if you're reading this, that means you."


In Chicago, "Nancy Loo was back on the air Thursday one week after the WGN-Channel 9 reporter and fill-in news anchor was hospitalized for a mysterious medical condition," Robert Feder reported for his website. "Loo, 51, disclosed Wednesday that she had been absent from the Tribune Media station since April 21 for treatment of hypothyroidism, which she said had 'zapped my metabolism, caused swelling from head to toe, made my voice raspy and my thinking a bit foggy' . . .."

"Iraqi authorities have suspended Al Jazeera’s licence to operate in the country, the International Federation of Journalists, the world largest organisation of journalists, reported on Thursday. IFJ criticized the decision as “biased and deeply prejudicial in a country that badly needs a free press.”


"Three Iranian journalists who were arrested in November 2015 have been handed lengthy jail sentences after the court in Tehran found them guilty this week of several charges, including spreading propaganda and acting against national security," the International Federation of Journalists reported on Friday.

Reporters Without Borders said Thursday that it was "appalled by the two-year jail sentences that an Istanbul court passed today on two journalists with the Turkish daily Cumhuriyet for reproducing the cover cartoon of the Charlie Hebdo 'Survivors Issue,' the first issue published after the January 2015 attack on the Paris-based magazine. . . . "


Reporters Without Borders said Tuesday that it was "appalled to learn that dozens of foreign and Egyptian journalists were arrested while covering major protests against President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government in various parts of Cairo and in provincial cities yesterday. . . ."

Richard Prince's Journal-isms originates from Washington. It began in print before most of us knew what the Internet was, and it would like to be referred to as a "column. Any views expressed in the column are those of the person or organization quoted and not those of any other entity.


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