The killing of an unarmed Michael Brown Aug. 9 has triggered a national dialogue of passion and protest. On Wednesday, Sept.10, at 4:30 p.m. the Cornell Africana Studies and Research Center and Cornell Law School will hold a forum to examine some of the reasons for – and the consequences of – that killing. The event is free and open to the public, and will take place in the Africana Studies and Research Center Multipurpose Room, 310 Triphammer Rd, Ithaca.
Forum participant Travis Gosa, a social scientist who is an assistant professor of Africana Studies at Cornell, has researched and written about the social and cultural worlds of African-American youth. He notes that research shows that “awareness of racial inequality doesn’t seem to motivate white Americans to support policies that address police violence – it can have the opposite effect, while media reports of blacks rioting and looting can reinforce stereotypes of black criminality.”
“We know that what happened to Michael Brown was not a unique incident but part of a larger phenomenon—and that it will happen again, soon,” wrote forum participant Lanre Akinsiku in an editorial for The Gawker. Akinsiku is a student in Cornell’s MFA Program in the College of Arts and Sciences.
The third forum member, Joe Margulies, is visiting professor of government and law at Cornell’s Law School. He has been a civil rights and criminal defense lawyer who has worked on police shootings in both the civil and criminal contexts.
The forum will be moderated by Noliwe Rooks, associate professor of Africana Studies and Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Cornell.