Colorlines

Kai Wright

Kai Wright
Kai Wright Editor-at-Large
New York, NY

Kai Wright is editor-at-large of Colorlines and a reporting fellow of the Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute. His investigative reporting on economic inequity has closely followed by the housing and jobs crises. He is a regular commentator on National Public Radio and in other broadcast media, and is reporting a series on health care reform for WNYC News.

Kai is author, most recently, of "Drifting Toward Love: Black, Brown, Gay and Coming of Age on the Streets of New York." He is also the author of two books of African-American history: "The African American Experience: Black History and Culture Through Speeches, Letters, Editorials, Poems, Songs, and Stories," and "Soldiers of Freedom: An Illustrated History of African Americans in the Armed Forces," which explores America's struggle with race as it has been dramatized by the need to staff a viable military.

You can follow Kai on Twitter at @kai_wright and on Instagram. Check out Kai's media appearances here.

Ron Paul Takes Lead Among Iowa GOP, Where Voters Party Like It's 1964

Ron Paul Takes Lead Among Iowa GOP, Where Voters Party Like It’s 1964

by Kai Wright on December 19 2011, 10:16AM

The Texas libertarian is leading a new poll of Iowa Republicans, stealing the scene from Newt Gingrich. Among Paul’s greatest hits: Bragging that he’d have voted against the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

Topics: GOP Primary, /NOW, Politics

The News Never Slows Down, But Sometimes We Must

by Kai Wright on December 19 2011, 9:47AM

Colorlines.com is slowing down for the holidays—and getting ready for a big year in 2012. This week: Rinku Sen, Akiba Solomon and other Colorlines writers discuss what to expect in the year ahead.

Topics: /NOW

A Bronx Tale: How Racism Created Poverty, and Still Perpetuates It

A Bronx Tale: How Racism Created Poverty, and Still Perpetuates It

by Kai Wright on December 16 2011, 10:20AM

The poverty in which millions of people of color live is not accidental. It’s the result of decades of political choices that first created ghettos and then left them prey to a growing industry that profits from their existence. The Bronx offers a uniquely clear example.

Topics: Dispatches, Economy

Investigative Journalism Matters--And So Do You!

Investigative Journalism Matters—And So Do You!

by Kai Wright on December 8 2011, 11:36AM

We need your help to keep putting reporters on the racial justice beat. Please donate to support Colorlines.com’s investigative journalism today. The more you give, the more we can dig up!

Topics: Kai Wright

Colorlines Investigations Are Expensive--and Crucial. Donate Today!

Colorlines Investigations Are Expensive—and Crucial. Donate Today!

by Kai Wright on November 10 2011, 2:54PM

The more you give, the more we can dig up. Donate today to keep Colorlines.com on the racial justice beat for you.

Topics: Kai Wright

Is President Obama's Jobs Drumbeat Working?

Is President Obama’s Jobs Drumbeat Working?

by Kai Wright on October 14 2011, 11:26AM

No, Obama can’t wave his magic wand and pass bills. But he can use the substantial bully pulpit he occupies to at least force the right conversation. He’s been doing so for weeks, and there are signs that it’s working.

Topics: Jobs Crisis, Kai Wright, Politics

Which Occupy Movements Are Doing Right by Race? [Reader Forum]

Which Occupy Movements Are Doing Right by Race? [Reader Forum]

by Kai Wright on October 13 2011, 1:48PM

One commenter says Occupy L.A. has built a stronger movement by being intentional about race. Any other examples from the ground?

Topics: #Occupy, Kai Wright

Harry Belafonte: 'You Can't Wish the Issue of Race Away' Play

Harry Belafonte: ‘You Can’t Wish the Issue of Race Away’

by Kai Wright on October 12 2011, 10:30AM

The 84-year-old artist and activist has published a memoir of his life and career. Colorlines.com’s publisher Rinku Sen spoke with him a year ago about the wisdom that career generated for today’s generation of change makers.

Topics: Kai Wright, Politics

Six Cities Where Black People Are Living in a Depression

Six Cities Where Black People Are Living in a Depression

by Kai Wright on October 7 2011, 10:48AM

Black unemployment is at levels comparable to the Great Depression in six cities. But then again, black populations in dozens of cities were in acute recessions before the national crisis ever began. The actual numbers are striking.

Topics: Economy, Jobs Crisis, Kai Wright

Are Lawmakers Listening? The Consumer Watchdog Vote Will Tell

Are Lawmakers Listening? The Consumer Watchdog Vote Will Tell

by Kai Wright on October 6 2011, 3:20PM

There’s a quite specific way our representatives can show if they’re listening to the growing movement: get the consumer watchdog fully up and running. And there will be many, many fights to follow.

Topics: #Occupy, Economy, Kai Wright

Here's to Occupying Wall Street! (If Only That Were Actually Happening)

Here’s to Occupying Wall Street! (If Only That Were Actually Happening)

by Kai Wright on October 3 2011, 10:05AM

The Occupy Wall Street movement is building steam as protestors battle with NYPD over the right to peaceful assembly. That’s great, but the crisis at hand—crippling economic inequity—is once again lost in the din.

Topics: #Occupy, Economy, Kai Wright

Homeowners to Banks: Clean Up the Mess You Left in Our Neighborhood Photo

Homeowners to Banks: Clean Up the Mess You Left in Our Neighborhood

by Kai Wright, Sita Bhaumik on September 29 2011, 10:02AM

Amid all the deficit and campaign talk, it’s easy to forget the foreclosure crisis continues to destroy neighborhoods. Community organizers in East Oakland got fed up and delivered the dirty problem to its source.

Topics: #Occupy, Economy, Kai Wright

It's President Obama Who Needs to 'Stop Complaining' and Get to Work

It’s President Obama Who Needs to ‘Stop Complaining’ and Get to Work

by Kai Wright on September 28 2011, 11:51AM

Obama ruffled feathers with a speech telling black leaders to take off their “bedroom slippers” and join the battle for his jobs bill. Funny thing is, that’s just what they were trying to tell him.

Topics: Economy, Jobs Crisis, Kai Wright, Politics

The Long, Murderous Arm of the Law Has Killed Troy Davis

The Long, Murderous Arm of the Law Has Killed Troy Davis

by Kai Wright, Jamilah King on September 21 2011, 11:13PM

Tonight, we mourn not only Davis’s life, but all of those lives that have been destroyed and taken in the name of a criminally unjust system of law and order.

Topics: Criminal Justice, Kai Wright, Troy Davis

Key Question of 2012: Do You Represent the People or the Banks?

Key Question of 2012: Do You Represent the People or the Banks?

by Kai Wright on September 20 2011, 10:43AM

The president vowed to make the rich “pay their fair share.” Let’s hope he’s serious. But either way, a new campaign launches today to make sure both parties must care as much about homeowners and workers as they do bankers in 2012.

Topics: Debt Deal, Economy, Kai Wright

Stocks Are Down! Obama's Unpopular! Wait, Who Cares?!

Stocks Are Down! Obama’s Unpopular! Wait, Who Cares?!

by Kai Wright on September 2 2011, 12:53PM

Another dismal monthly jobs report and another round of all the wrong questions and concerns. Meanwhile, millions of people continue fighting for survival.

Topics: Economy, Jobs Crisis, Kai Wright

HIV Epidemic Growing Fastest Among Black Gay and Bisexual Men

HIV Epidemic Growing Fastest Among Black Gay and Bisexual Men

by Kai Wright on August 4 2011, 12:30PM

An alarming study reveals HIV infections grew by nearly 50 percent among black gay and bisexual men in recent years. There are many complex causes for the trend, but there are also some clear solutions if we commit to them.

Topics: Gender & Sexuality, HIV/AIDS, Health, Kai Wright

James Baldwin As My Guide in the Messy Work of Revolutionary Love

James Baldwin As My Guide in the Messy Work of Revolutionary Love

by Kai Wright on August 2 2011, 6:39PM

Baldwin’s characters struggle to understand how to love themselves and others within the toxic milieu of American racism. And millions of people like me have turned to those stories for insight in our own struggles.

Topics: Celebrate Love

The Tea Party Says, Yes, We Can! (Then Actually Changes Stuff)

The Tea Party Says, Yes, We Can! (Then Actually Changes Stuff)

by Kai Wright on August 1 2011, 11:21AM

The most consequential change to our political landscape in 2008 may not have been Obama’s election, but rather the right’s response to it.

Topics: Debt Deal, Kai Wright, Politics

The Racial Wealth Gap's Larger Than Ever. Here's How It Will Destroy Us

The Racial Wealth Gap’s Larger Than Ever. Here’s How It Will Destroy Us

by Kai Wright on July 26 2011, 10:58AM

The wealth gap is now larger than it’s been since the Census Bureau began counting it. The foreclosure crisis is part of the reason, but its more symptom than cause for the building catastrophe in the U.S. economy.

Topics: Economy, Kai Wright, Wealth Gap