Read & Resist: W’s Daily Briefing for June 23

From the NYPD’s jarring response to Brooklyn fireworks to the flaws of Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility, here are the stories not to miss.

David Shankbone, via Wikimedia Commons

Back in the day, W started off the morning with a quick round-up of links to that day’s fashion- and culture-related news. Times have changed; in the weeks since a now former white police officer named Derek Chauvin killed an unarmed Black man named George Floyd, protests have erupted across the country. Now, more than ever, it’s important to stay up to date, which is why we’re reviving “Chic in Review” as the slightly more radical “Read & Resist.” Here are the stories, videos, and tweets we’re hoping you don’t miss this Tuesday:

“People in Brooklyn Were Setting Off Fireworks. Then Police Showed Up in Riot Gear,” by Caroline Haskins for Buzzfeed News

As the increased presence of fireworks consume more and more of the national conversation, the New York Police Department has begun responding to them with dozens of officers in riot gear.

“Black Gallerists Press Forward Despite a Market That Holds Them Back,” by Robin Pogrebin for the New York Times

Out of the 176 members of the Art Dealers Association of America, there is only one African American gallerist. That’s one more than the latest edition of Art Basel, which features 281 of the world’s leading art galleries. The statistics are jarring, but all too familiar to the dozen-plus Black gallerists in the U.S. who spoke with Robin Pogrebin.

“Police Reform Alone Won’t Stop Another George Floyd From Being Murdered,” by Wesley Lowery for Newsweek

“Rather than contemplating body cameras and bias training, the public is now debating what it could look like to shift some responsibilities away from police forces altogether,” Wesley Lowery writes in Newsweek’s latest cover story. “The nation is asking: Where do we go from here? And it seems, Americans are at least momentarily willing to consider a radical answer in response.”

“When Luxury Stores Decorate Their Riot Barricades With Protest Art,” by Max Lakin for the New York Times

Like so many of corporate America’s recent moves, the efforts of upscale companies to decorate their boarded-up stores with messages of solidarity ring hollow. In this opinion piece, writer Max Lakin gets at the heart of why it feels so jarring to see street art co-opted in this way.

“White Fragility Is Real. But White Fragility Is Flawed,” by Carlos Lozada for the Washington Post

Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility is currently the no. 1 bestseller on the New York Times’s nonfiction list. Carlos Lozada argues that it doesn’t deserve that distinction: “Even as it introduces a memorable concept, White Fragility presents oversimplified arguments that are self-fulfilling, even self-serving. The book flattens people of any ancestry into two-dimensional beings fitting predetermined narratives. And reading DiAngelo offers little insight into how a national reckoning such as the one we’re experiencing today could have come about. In a White Fragility world, nothing ever changes, because change would violate its premise.”

“A Reckoning Over Objectivity, Led by Black Journalists,” by Wesley Lowery for the New York Times

“The failure of the mainstream press to accurately cover black communities is intrinsically linked with its failure to employ, retain and listen to black people,” Lowery writes in this opinion piece.

“The End of the Girlboss Is Here,” by Leigh Stein for Gen

“The rise and fall of the girlboss says more about how comfortable we’ve become mixing capitalism with social justice, as we look to corporations to implement social changes because we’ve lost faith in our public institutions to do so,” Leigh Stein writes of those she calls “the millennial embodiment of unapologetic ambition,” whose numbers are seeing a rapid decline. “Woke capitalism lets the elites maintain the status quo while paying lip service to the demands of activists, and, as ethical consumers, millennials get to feel like they’re making a difference every time they go shopping.”


Trigger warning:

Food for Thought

Related: Have Patience for the Owners of Black-Owned Bookstores