Category Archives: Voices of Color

History Matters: Remembering Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Fight for Economic Justice

By Stephanie Fortado Dr. Stephanie Seawell Fortado is a Lecturer at the University of Illinois Labor Education Program, providing workshops and extension programming for unions and the general public on the Champaign-Urbana campus and throughout Illinois. Before joining the University, … Continue reading

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Is Chancellor Jones in the ‘Sunken Place’?

by Kurtis ‘Sunny’ Ture Kurtis ‘Sunny’ Ture is a music producer, organizer, and graduate student at UIUC. As a founding member of Black Students for Revolution and the Speak Truth Collective, Sunny seeks to raise political consciousness, celebrate Black culture, … Continue reading

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The Water Project: Examining our relationship with our most precious resource

Nancy Dietrich is a resident of Urbana who became an environmentalist because she likes to breathe clean air and drink clean water. “Destruction of water resources and of forest catchments and aquifers is a form of terrorism. Denying poor people … Continue reading

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Full Transcript of Evelyn Reynolds’s CU Women’s March Speech

I’m grateful for the opportunity to speak here today. None of today’s speakers can fully represent the array of magnificent women in our community. Many of which don’t hold public positions of influence or prestigious titles. Many of whom are … Continue reading

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Police Terror To Increase Under Trump

In less than two months since the election of Donald Trump there has been a surge in violent islamophobic and xenophobic attacks in this country. While the rhetoric, actions and entire campaign of Trump has prompted conversations amongst scholars, activists … Continue reading

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The Recolonization of Standing Rock

By Desmond Powers After a thirty-five hour drive from New Orleans, I rolled into Standing Rock’s Oceti Sakowin camp in a VW hatchback plastered with Bernie stickers with two fellow New Orleanians and a trunk full of herbal medicine and … Continue reading

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Small Victories Matter

By Jacquelyn Potter Jacquelyn Potter is on the Executive Committee of the local Sierra Club, where she is involved in activism regarding DAPL and other pipeline issues. A celebration of joy erupted in the cold, snowy and wet camp at … Continue reading

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Demands for a Transformed University

On September 9, 2016, a “Rally for a Transformed University” was held at the alma mater on UIUC campus. It corresponded with the release of a list of demands. Led by Black Students For Revolution, the coalition of student organizations … Continue reading

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Myths of Unity

An increasingly polarized climate has resulted in this beautiful revolution we call Black Lives Matter we are experiencing today. As both an observer and victim of this increasingly militarized society I’m proud to see us finally unite. However, I’m afraid. … Continue reading

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CU Schools Need to Work Harder to Involve African American Parents

During the month of August, thousands of children will head back to schools in Champaign Unit 4 and Urbana 116 school districts. Many African American families and students are probably anxious about the new school year because of issues they … Continue reading

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We Don’t Need a New Jail, We Need Abolition

Speaking to the Champaign County Board on Tuesday, August 9th, local Black organizer/activist, Kadeem Fuller made a much needed case for the abolition of jails, prisons, and white supremacy. The following is a transcript of his speech.  Tonight I sit … Continue reading

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City and IMC Announce $50,000 grant for creative placemaking from the NEA

Downtown Urbana is about to become a lot more creative – thanks to the vision of local youth, the City of Urbana, the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center (IMC), and the National Endowment of the Arts. The NEA has announced awards … Continue reading

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Radical Women-An Historical Perspective

“Women have to find a script, a narrative to live by, because all other scripts are likely to depict them in roles that fit the conventional stereotypes.” Mamphela Ramphele Last month in these pages I wrote about my personal journey as … Continue reading

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Fraternities, Sororities and Racism at Illinois’ Flagship Land-Grant Institution

Efad Huq, Stacy Harwood and Ruby Mendenhall Research from the 2011-2012 Racial Microaggression online survey indicates that one area of concern expressed by students of color is the explicit racism they experience when interacting with largely White fraternity and sororities. … Continue reading

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Children With Incarcerated Parents Played Key Role in Phone Justice Victory!

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted recently to cap the rates of phone calls from prisons and jails after years of profiteering by telecommunications companies that have made millions off of those incarcerated and their families. In her comments before … Continue reading

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Mother Nature EP by Klevah and T.R.U.T.H: The Elements Personified

There is no greater time to be a hip hop head in Champaign-Urbana. While the towns have always boasted superb talent―there is deep hip hop history here―that two emcees joined forces to create something new is newsworthy. Shasta Knox a.k.a … Continue reading

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Hometown Dedication

The below poem was read by Coco Harmon at the 15-year anniversary celebration for the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center. You can watch it online here thanks to UPTV. — Have you been there? You know, that moment when your legs … Continue reading

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Islam and the Inmate: Mislabeled “Menaces”

By Anatta Oknokwo “Allahu Akbar!” Mack Trimble, Jr. enthusiastically calls his fellow inmates to prayer.  Soon the chapel of Jackson State Prison will hum with the melodic recitation of the Holy Qur’an as the community of Muslim males prostrate before … Continue reading

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Securus Technologies: How a Carceral Conglomerate Makes Millions from Mass Incarceration

Miguel Saucedo grew up in the Latino neighborhood of Little Village in Chicago. Now almost 30, Miguel recalls as an eight year old taking a five-hour drive to visit his older brother who was incarcerated downstate at Menard Correctional Center. … Continue reading

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#BlackLivesMatter Protests Locally

Along with others across the nation, people of Champaign-Urbana have held protests, die-ins, and marches. Below are photos from some of the events. On Tuesday, November 25, CU Citizens for Peace and Justice held a demonstration outside of the county … Continue reading

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