We Must Work Together to End Racial Injustice

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on
LinkedIn
+

Pioneer’s mission is to advance a nation where every American has freedom and can prosper. The institute has focused deeply on expanding economic opportunity for all, and as a critical component of that, access to high-quality educational options. We also work to promote greater participation in our American democracy, beginning with what and how students learn about our nation. We have long advocated for the rigorous study of U.S. history, including America’s original sin of slavery and the ongoing journey to end racism.

Today’s Context

Three officers witnessed Officer Chauvin’s suffocation of George Floyd. For months, police and state officials did not prosecute the men who killed Ahmaud Arbery.  These events underscore that our country must do more to stare down the sometimes deadly racial inequities in policing.  The Institute recognizes that the vast majority of officers sworn to protect all Americans abhor such actions.  But these transgressions demonstrate the need for a re-evaluation of practices and, in some instances, the culture within some of our law enforcement agencies.

Our Past Response

Pioneer has been purposeful in advancing changes to address, in part, the scourge of racism and the lack of access to economic opportunity, especially in disadvantaged communities. We have shown unmatched determination to expand educational options that promote social mobility; these include charter public and vocational schools, the Metco and interdistrict choice programs, and access to private schools, all of which have demonstrated success at bridging achievement gaps for urban students.  We have convened policymakers, school and business leaders, and the general public through forums with high-profile Civil Rights activists and historians that raise awareness of the role of slavery and racism in American history — and the need for all students to study and understand the damage that has resulted.

In transportation, we have fought for meaningful changes to public transit to ensure all communities have access to reliable service, especially in our urban areas, and promoted the establishment of a magnet high school focused on training inner city youth for jobs in transportation.

We have long supported key reforms of the state’s criminal justice system where a disproportionate share of the state’s incarcerated population are people of color. Those reforms include: ending solitary confinement, showcasing solutions to reduce recidivism, programs to reintegrate offenders into the mainstream workforce, and ending the shameful practice of using prisons as de facto mental health facilities; and emulating a successful magnet school to ready inner city youth for a career in law enforcement.

And knowing that government frequently cloaks mistakes both small and systemic, we work to make government transparent and increasingly accountable through online tools to provide ready access to public data and numerous public information requests.

Our Coming Response

Recognizing that we can do more on the protection of civil liberties and criminal justice, Pioneer released yesterday, “Respect My Rights,” a new web-based hotline to which citizens can submit complaints and descriptions of civil liberties violations they have experienced.  The Institute will share the Respect My Rights platform with states across the nation and serve as a research hub for scholars and news organizations interested in the protection of our civil liberties.  The Institute will also promote changes to the legal doctrine of “qualified immunity,” which makes government officials unaccountable for illegal or unconstitutional acts.

In other policy areas related to discussions of equity, in the coming weeks look for a Pioneer campaign calling for the City of Boston to allow convenience clinics to open, which would expand the availability of COVID-19 testing for inner city residents, and for research and advocacy focused on enhancing the success of our hardest hit industries — restaurants, retail, leisure and hospitality — which employ so many urban residents.

We will never have true equality unless all communities are provided the opportunity for social and economic upward mobility.

We all must do more.  Now.

Jim Stergios

Receive Important Updates (ISSUES)

Related Content

PUBLIC FORUMS

OP-EDS & COMMENTARY

RESEARCH

PODCASTS:

WEB PORTAL:

Making a Difference Through METCO

Recent Posts

John Dearie: Halt Immigration? Fall Behind

This week on JobMakers, host Denzil Mohammed talks with John Dearie, founder and president of the Center for American Entrepreneurship, a Washington, D.C.-based research, policy and advocacy organization. Immigration is core to his mission to build a policy environment that promotes entrepreneurship because he knows all too well that the United States was and continues to be built by entrepreneurial immigrants who had the drive and determination to pick up, leave everything they know behind, and build a new life in a new homeland.

Award-Winner Prof. David Reynolds on Abraham Lincoln & American Civil War Culture

This week on “The Learning Curve," co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with David Reynolds, a Distinguished Professor of English and History at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He is the author of Abe: Abraham Lincoln in His Times, selected as one of the Top Ten Books of the Year by The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. Professor Reynolds shares what teachers and students alike should know about the culture of Civil War America, primary education in that era, and the wide variety of influences on Lincoln’s thinking and leadership.

In Commentary Magazine, Bari Weiss Takes on Wokeness and Cancel Culture

Author and journalist Bari Weiss is out with a new article in Commentary magazine on why and how we should fight the "woke revolution." One word: courage. We think you shoudl read it & watch her remarks at Pioneer's recent event!

Competition Amongst States: How Tax Policy Drives Residents to Seek Better Value

This week on Hubwonk (our debut video & audio edition), Host Joe Selvaggi talks with research analyst Andrew Mikula about the findings from his recent report, A Timely Tax Cut, in which he explored the relationship between state tax rates and policy and the direction of interstate migration.

Bernat Olle Gets a Visa to Improve the World

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Dr. Bernat Olle, co-founder and CEO of Vedanta Biosciences, about his journey from Catalonia, Spain, to Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he continued his Chemical Engineering studies at MIT. Navigating the complex immigration system while seeking purpose in his career, he eventually found his calling and was lucky enough to remain in the U.S. to see it through: designing a new class of medicines to modulate the human microbiome. 

CRPE’s Robin Lake on COVID School Closures & Learning Loss

This week on “The Learning Curve," co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with Robin Lake, director of the Center on Reinventing Public Education (CRPE), a non-partisan research and policy analysis organization developing transformative, evidence-based solutions for K-12 public education.

Rent Control Re-Explored: What the Past Can Teach the Future

Hubwonk Host Joe Selvaggi talks with economist and MIT Professor Chris Palmer about his research and analysis of the effects of rent control in Cambridge during its 25-year implementation and in the aftermath of its repeal.

Saboor Sakhizada, Afghan Translator: Traitor or Patriot?

Last week on JobMakers, we met Abdul Saboor Sakhizada, a former translator, instructor and manager for the U.S. Army in Afghanistan, now living with his family in upstate New York. He spoke about life as a child of war, and what it was like in the front lines alongside U.S. troops, including Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth. This week, Abdul reveals that he is actively trying to evacuate fellow Afghan interpreters and their families, including his own baby brother, and he gives us his thoughts on the U.S. withdrawal, paints a picture of who these Afghan refugees are, and entreats Americans to reject the false rhetoric, and get to know these new Americans, in this final edition of a two-part special of JobMakers.

Study Warns that New Hampshire Tax Policies Would Exacerbate Impacts of a Graduated Income Tax

Drawing on migration patterns between Massachusetts and states like Rhode Island and Tennessee, Pioneer Institute is releasing a study showing a direct correlation between personal income tax rates and household domestic migration patterns between 2004 and 2019. The study suggests that instituting a graduated income tax will shrink the tax base and deter talented workers and innovative employers from coming to and staying in the Bay State.

Prof. Raymond Arsenault on the 60th Anniversary of the Freedom Rides & Civil Rights

This week on “The Learning Curve," co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with Raymond Arsenault, the John Hope Franklin Professor of Southern History at the University of South Florida, and author of several acclaimed and prize-winning books on civil rights, including Freedom Riders: 1961 and the Struggle for Racial Justice. He shares how he became interested in researching, writing, and teaching about the Civil Rights Movement.

Defusing Ideological Tribalism: Methods for Communicating Across Political Language Barriers

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with economist and author Dr. Arnold Kling about his book, The Three Languages of Politics, Talking Across the Political Divides, which outlines the dynamics of political tribalism, defines the respective world view and vocabulary of progressives, conservatives, and libertarianism, and offers methods for communicating and persuading across ideological lines in a way that fosters civil, productive, public debate.

Pioneer Applauds MassDOT for Allston Project All At-Grade Plan

Pioneer Institute applauds the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (Mass DOT) for its decision to move forward with an all at-grade design for the “throat” area as part of the massive $1.7 billion Allston I-90 Interchange project announced yesterday by State Secretary of Transportation Jamey Tesler. Pioneer had proposed that MassDOT should revise its Scoping Report on the I-90 Allston Multimodal Project and recommend an additional option - a modified at-grade option for the throat area - to the Federal Highway Administration.

Saboor Sakhizada: Afghan Translator, Child of War

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Saboor Sakhizada, who worked as an instructor, manager and translator for the U.S. Army (and received a Department of the Army Superior Civilian Service Award) in Kabul, Afghanistan. In the first of a two-part special, we get to know Afghanistan and its people, examine the fallout of the government collapse and learn how Saboor is actively working in the most difficult and chaotic of circumstances to get as many people evacuated from Afghanistan as possible.

Match Charter Public School Founder Mike Goldstein on School & Teacher Prep Reform

This week on “The Learning Curve," co-hosts Gerard Robinson and Cara Candal talk with Mike Goldstein, the founder of the MATCH Charter School and MATCH Teacher Residency in Boston.

Study: After Years of Steady Increases, Homeschooling Enrollment Rose Dramatically During COVID

After steadily increasing for years, the number of parents choosing to homeschool their children skyrocketed during the pandemic, and policy makers should do more to acknowledge homeschooling as a viable option, according to a new study published by Pioneer Institute.

Marathon Endurance Test: Leaders Pave the Way for Boston’s Return

Hubwonk host Joe Selvaggi talks with Boston Athletic Association’s CEO Tom Grilk about the leadership challenges of cancelling the world’s oldest continuous marathon, a $200-million benefit to the region involving eight municipalities and 10,000 volunteers, in the face of a pandemic - and how cooperation among stakeholders brought back the epic event to be run this October.

Study Finds SALT Deduction Cap, Graduated Income Tax Will Combine to More Than Double Tax Burden on Some Households

A provision of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 strictly limiting deductions for state and local taxes (SALT) will greatly exacerbate the adverse effects of a proposal to create a constitutionally mandated graduated income tax, according to a new study published by Pioneer Institute.

Jim Stergios on Why Immigrants Are Crucial to Our Success

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Jim Stergios, executive director of Pioneer Institute, about why Pioneer collaborated with The Immigrant Learning Center to produce this podcast. They discuss the overrepresentation of immigrants in terms of job creation in America, contrary to the myth that immigrants “take” jobs.