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Owning Up: Why America Can’t Ignore Its Past And Its Failings

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC.
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC.

A flawed response to a global pandemic. A string of falsehoods concerning the efficacy of mail-in voting. A violent and undemocratic response to nationwide protests against police brutality and racism.

The president of the United States has a lot to answer for in the eyes of his critics.

Ibram X. Kendi is the author of “How to Be an Antiracist” and the founding director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University. He’s written a cover story forThe Atlantic detailing how President Donald Trump’s racism has forced America to confront its own, especially the prejudiced systems which have allowed the oppression of minority communities in the United States.

Ed Yong is a staff writer for The Atlantic. He recently published a piece for the same magazine painstakingly detailing the numerous failures and inadequacies in the federal government’s approach to combating the coronavirus. Yong explores how the underfunding of medical resources left minority communities particularly vulnerable to coronavirus, contributing to the country’s skyrocketing death toll.

We ask both of them: Is America ready to reckon with its past? And what happens to America’s future?

Copyright 2020 WAMU 88.5. To see more, visit WAMU 88.5.

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