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Chicago’s mayor, Lori Lightfoot, has announced that she’ll only be taking interviews regarding her last two years in office from journalists of color. “In the time since I was elected, our country has faced an historic reckoning around systemic racism. In looking at the absence of diversity across the City Hall press corps and other newsrooms, sadly it does not appear that many of the media institutions in Chicago have caught on and truly have not embraced this moment.” Naturally, social media went into a whirlwind. Right wing media and provocateurs are claiming that Lightfoot refusing to speak to white journalists is racism, but I, and most sensible people, would argue it is anything but. It is not a racist action to attempt to promote equity, especially when newsrooms maintain an environment that only comprises 17% of non-white staff, and 13% of non-white leadership. What is racist? The right wing men comparing Lightfoot’s natural hair to Beetlejuice because you disagree with her policy decisions. As a black and Native American writer living in Harlem, I find Lori Lightfoot’s demands to only speak with journalists of color rather reasonable, and more importantly, commendable.

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