A place to interrogate the norms, gain insights, and get inspired


Friday was Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday. Coincidentally, it was also the day that many of us learned, myself included, that we were #openlyBlack. Then on Monday we were inundated with the annual onslaught of misunderstood and misused MLK quotes by many who surely would not have liked or supported the man in real-time. Comedian Jaboukie Young-White will forever go down in history with the best take on this.

I found it particularly interesting this year, as the holiday just so happened to coincide with discussion around raising the federal minimum wage to (a measly) $15 per hour. The same people who were incensed at the idea of giving workers a closer-to living wage were uplifting Martin Luther King hours later. While we're often spoon fed this kumbaya, can't we all just get along version of the man, the truth is that near the end of his life, Martin Luther King's politics had become increasingly more radical. He was a huge proponent of a universal basic income and without a doubt an anti-capitalist.

Over the summer, George Floyd's murder spawned the interest of many into anti-racism subject matter. And while police brutality is a valid entry point, we would be remiss to stop there because there is no ridding ourselves of racism without also challenging capitalism. At the most simplistic level, the idea of capitalism is that it's a free market system that exists without bias. But the truth is that any system constructed within a white supremacist society such as the United States, cannot help but to uphold white supremacist values. As with every other US structure or institution, capitalism is inextricably linked with racism, anti-Black racism in particular.

So as we are having these conversations around wages and student debt and eradicating poverty, we cannot forget to include the nuance that is race. Because as MLK said, "The evils of capitalism are as real as the evils of militarism and racism. The problems of racial injustice and economic injustice cannot be solved without a radical redistribution of political and economic power.”


As I'm sure you're aware, this newsletter usually goes out on Tuesdays, but yesterday it was just not coming together. I was mentally spent and stressing myself out sending something out was not helping. I had to practice some self-compassion. It is not uncommon to speak to ourselves more harshly than we'd speak to someone else who was in a similar situation or would ever allow someone else to speak to us for that matter. Instead of succumbing to that voice inside my head, I stopped to ask, What do I need right now? In that moment, it was to cut myself some slack. The pressure I felt was of my own making and sending you a newsletter that I could be proud of, albeit a day late, was a better alternative. As we continue the week, what's one way you could be a little bit kinder to yourself?


Have your own moment to celebrate or someone else's? Share it with me here.

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