Flowers rest on a sign reading “Todo El Mundo Tiene Derechos A Vivir” or “Everybody Has A Right To Live” during the Poor People’s Campaign march through Memphis in May. Photo by Andrea Morales for MLK50

Producing radical journalism requires radical action. That includes self-care.

To that end, the staff of MLK50: Justice Through Journalism is taking a break this week to rest and regroup. We will return on Sept. 6 and the newsletter will resume Sept. 12. During our downtime our social media will be silent and no stories will be published on our website. 

In the meanwhile, we’d like to leave you with some things we’ve read that deepened our knowledge and inspired us to keep doing the work we do.


  • The TVA is dumping a mountain of coal ash in Black south Memphis: This Washington Post story does a nice job of telling the story of how a community that scored one environmental justice victory soon after got hit with another challenge and how these things seem to always happen in Black communities. It features great photography from MLK50 contributor Brandon Dill. 


  • Broken Ground: And speaking of South Memphis, the fifth season of the Southern Environmental Law Center’s podcast focuses on how the community fought off the Byhalia oil pipeline. We especially like the fourth part. (Hint, hint: We in there!) 
  • How to Survive the End of the World: Sisters Autumn Brown and adrienne maree brown host this podcast that explores the practices we need as a community to thrive. We especially like the July 28 episode “Love the Job: Finding the Labor We Love,” which uses the work of bell hooks to guide listeners into ways to love the work they do.


  • Fault Lines: 51 Years Behind Bars: A key issue in the Shelby County District Attorney’s race was the transfer of youths to adult court. This documentary, produced by Al Jazeera and available on YouTube, personalizes the issue by telling the story of Almeer Nance, who at 16, was one of three people involved in a 1996 felony murder. He didn’t pull the trigger but he received a sentence of 51 years — essentially a life sentence. His story highlights the dangers of this approach. 
  • Jackson: Although this documentary on Amazon Prime was made in 2016, it still feels urgent. It’s a look at abortion access through the lives of three women and the now successful effort to close the last abortion clinic in Mississippi. 

This story is brought to you by MLK50: Justice Through Journalism, a nonprofit newsroom focused on poverty, power and policy in Memphis. Support independent journalism by making a tax-deductible donation today. MLK50 is also supported by these generous donors.

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