Lauren Michele Jackson: “Our culture frequently associates black people with excessive behaviors, regardless of the behavior at hand. Black women will often be accused of yelling when we haven’t so much as raised our voice. Officer Darren Wilson perceived a teenage Michael Brown as a hulking ‘demon’ and a young black girl who remained still was flipped and dragged across a classroom by deputy Ben Fields. It’s an implication that points toward a strange way of thinking: When we do nothing, we’re doing something, and when we do anything, our behavior is considered “extreme.”

Naben Ruthnum on using a white pseudonym.

Maximillian Alvarez: “Looking back on this tumultuous election year, it seems clear that our political culture is marked, at the micro level, by the fusion of a given person’s opinion and what they perceive to be their singular, permanent, and authentic self. (I know that sounds like highfalutin, farty, pseudo-philosophical B.S., but just bear with me for a minute.) Like race, wingspan, or nationality, a person’s political opinions are now treated as if they are hardwired into their being—they are part of one’s fundamental, seemingly unchanging essence.”

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