Over the course of this year, Baltimore has been at the forefront of a national conversation about police brutality. The city has found itself back in the headlines again, but this time around, it’s related to a national eviction crisis. A new study released by the Public Justice Center, titled Justice Diverted: How Renters Are Processed in the Baltimore City Rent Court, revealed that nearly 7,000 families are evicted in Baltimore every year. According to the data, 94 percent of defendants in rent court were Black. Baltimore is the second city in the country with the highest percentage of people who have to deal with eviction. Many people are forced to leave because they don’t have access to legal help. “Our study shows that the court system prioritizes efficiencies which privilege the landlord’s bottom line, and as a result, it decidedly ignores two predominating realities of poor renters and their housing,” read the report. “Then, institutionalized customs of the court steer renters away from defending themselves, instead pushing them into agreements that have no effect on the considerable problems renters face at home – namely, overspending on insecure, unsafe, unhealthy housing.”Read more.
Philadelphia High School Eliminates ‘Huckleberry Finn’ From Curriculum
A high school in Philadelphia is eliminating “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” from its 11th grade curriculum due to the portrayal of African-Americans in the story. Although the piece of literature is recognized as a classic, Friends’ Central School didn’t want to expose students to the book at the expense of making their 11th graders feel uncomfortable. Principal Art Hall said the book is “challenging for some students, who felt the school was not being inclusive.” The book, which is set during the pre-Civil War era, was released 130 years ago. Read more.
Issa Rae to Launch New Audio Series
Issa Rae, the creator of The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl series, is continuing to bring creative projects to the table. Next year, Rae will launch a new audio drama titled “Fruit,” which will be featured on the Howl Premium subscription service. “Fruit” will chronicle the life of a gay African-American professional football player. It was created to shed light on the trials and tribulations that gay athletes go though. Casting for the project has already started. “Fruit” will be released in February 2016. Read more.