Two dangerous new “Riot Bills” that would punish people for peacefully protesting are making their way through Wisconsin. They are retaliation for last year's racial justice protests -- and would give police the power to criminalize anyone at a "riot" with a $10,000 fine and up to 9 months in jail. We have to stop this!
Today tech is dominated by a few mega-companies. We’ve watched Facebook, Google, and Amazon get bigger and bigger. These monopolies leave us at risk; it's why we still have to deal with misinformation and voter suppression online. It's time for antitrust reform!
Police foundations are a threat to democracy and Black lives. And you know their sponsors: Verizon, Walmart, Starbucks, Amazon, Bank of America, Target, AT&T, Uber among others. We can't let companies say they support Black people while giving to those who hurt us.
14 people have lost their lives in NYC jail custody this year. 64-year old Victor Mercado caught COVID-19 and died from it in jail because he couldn't afford the $100,000 bail set for his case. This is a humanitarian crisis. Tell Manhattan DA Cy Vance to free people from Rikers now.
By funneling private money into policing without oversight, police foundations bankroll violence against Black people. A year after the NYPD promised to disclose its contributions, we still don't know how much they get through the NYC Police Foundation.
Monopolies are why healthcare and medication costs continue to skyrocket, why misinformation is still rampant on Facebook, and why small Black-owned businesses struggle to compete. We're asking Congress to invest in antitrust laws that will help promote racial justice.
Republicans have unleashed a serious attack on voting rights across the country. Democratic Senators need to pick a side: protect the Jim Crow filibuster or the voting rights of the Black people who got them elected. Pass the Freedom to Vote Act.
Color Of Change once again held Facebook’s feet to the fire when it decided to run a misleading Trump re-election ad that implied it would take people to participate in the 2020 Census, but routed them to the “Make America Great Again” donation page instead. After we spoke out with tech accountability groups, Facebook reversed course and pulled the ad. Rashad is quoted in the Washington Post: “Going forward, harmful and misleading ads must be flagged in a pre-posting review process, not after they’ve hit hundreds, if not thousands, of news feeds.” Facebook currently has the most permissive and most damaging approach to political speech – allowing candidates to post misleading information and target specific audiences with it.
social list opener
Facebook Holds Its First Civil Rights Audit
This year we’ve worked tirelessly to hold Facebook accountable – persuading them to conduct their first civil rights audit and pressing them to adopt stronger policies against white supremacist content. We’ve held dozens of meetings, drawing their attention to how the platform has been used to censor Black activists and allow ads that discriminate against Black people. The fight continues. But Facebook has begun restricting racial targeting in ads, removing posts by white nationalists, and taken down posts meant to suppress voting.
social list opener
COC Members Save Disney’s Black Princess
We persuaded Disney not to whitewash their popular Black character Princess Tiana. When we saw early drawings of Tiana from the sequel to Wreck-It Ralph, it was clear they had straightened her hair, thinned her nose, and lightened her skin. Our members spoke out and persuaded Disney to keep Tiana a beautiful Black princess – part of our ongoing work to improve representation of Black characters in film and TV and make sure all children see heroes who look like them onscreen.
social list opener
Color Of Change helps people respond effectively to injustice in the world around us. As a national online force driven by 7 million members, we move decision makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people, and all people. Until justice is real.
Black activists have come out countering the false narrative Republicans are spreading — equating the deadly siege on the Capitol with last summer’s Black Lives Matter uprisings. The latest right-wing effort to misrepresent the BLM movement, they are trying to paint Black activists as violent, anarchist extremists. But BLM leaders distance themselves from provocateurs. In a recent analysis of 7,750 BLM demonstrations in 2,400 locations across the US, it turns out 93% happened with no violence. Color Of Change’s Scott Roberts is quoted saying equating Trump’s rioters to BLM could lead to even heavier law enforcement, surveillance, and violence against Black activists. “There is a real danger of this false equivocation.”
Since the now infamous attack on the Capitol January 6, Color Of Change has rolled out a number of campaigns to stop the spread of white nationalism. COC President Rashad Robinson is quoted. “The wanton disregard for Black life and justice stands in stark contrast to the images of police opening up our country’s Capitol to white supremacist insurgents who vandalized one of the greatest American symbols … To Black communities who have always faced racist policing, the answer is clear; these are the results the system was built to deliver.” For Color Of Change, the solution is to stop investing in a justice system that fails and brutalizes Black community and start investing in one that will keep all Americans safe.
There are signs the reality TV industry is trying to change its racist ways after a number of Black and Brown cast members complained about stereotyping and how they were being portrayed. Black characters have come forward saying they were edited after the fact to seem crazy or lazy. And since George Floyd’s death set off a racial awakening, networks are listening. CBS announced a goal of having 50% of all its reality cast be BIPOC. Kristen Marston, Color Of Change’s Culture & Entertainment Advocacy Director, is quoted. “We’re seeing studios and networks and execs really paying more attention and addressing the diversity on their sets.” And after 25 seasons, ABC’s The Bachelor has finally cast its first Black lead.
The difference could not be more stark in how police treated Black Lives Matter protesters last summer and how they responded to a predominantly white, pro-Trump crowd that assaulted the U.S. Capitol. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson is quoted, saying what happened should come as no surprise. It is further proof of how America’s police force is a system was designed to control and criminalize Black people. “In 2015, the FBI published a report about how police departments had been infiltrated with white nationalists, and we haven’t seen anything in terms of legislation to deal with this… It’s not an accident, what happened, it’s a consequence of a whole set of enablers from those in government to those and social media platforms, to folks in mainstream media.”
As COVID-19 shut down productions across networks, TV execs scrambled to adjust programming schedules and made calls on series expected not only in 2020, but also in 2021 and beyond. As a result, a slew of shows got the boot. Color Of Change’s Culture & Entertainment Advocacy Director Kristen Marston is quoted. “The recent cancelation of progressive shows with diverse casts speaks to a larger systemic issue that networks and distribution companies have in following through on their commitments to diversity and inclusion. Shows that position BIPOC, women, and LGBTQIA+ stories must not only be greenlit, but supported with resources and promotion to elevate them.”
The day after Georgia’s voters flipped the Senate by electing a Black and a Jewish man, underscoring the rising political power of racial minorities, the forces of white grievance politics struck back. Confederate flags few as a white armed mob in support of Trump’s attempts to overturn the election overtook the Capitol. Color Of Change President Rashad Robinson is quoted in making sense of the polarized realities in America today. “We don’t get racial justice out of a true democracy. We get a true democracy out of racial justice. In 2020, for the first time ever, racial justice became a majoritarian issue at the polls. Now we have to do the work to make sure that what is a majority issue actually becomes a governing majority. Because that is how you make a democracy function — when the will of the people are actually delivered on.”