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#BackChannel: NFL Players Respond To Trump, Nina Simone’s Childhood Home, And ‘Everything Is Love'

President Donald Trump and the NFL continue to wage war over athletes’ right to protest during the national anthem. Earlier this month, Trump suggested that instead of protesting, NFL players should give him names of people who they think are “unfairly treated by the justice system.” In an editorial for the New York Times, four current and former NFL players argued that it is not about individual pardons, it is about systemic injustice.

[NFL Players] whole engagement dispenses with this idea of a 'dumb jock.' The fact that they chose a New York Times Op-Ed is brilliant.- Mark Anthony Neal

Host Frank Stasio talks with popular culture experts Mark Anthony Neal andNatalie Bullock Brown about their statement in this episode of #BackChannel, The State of Things’ recurring series connecting culture and context.

They also discuss the swell of women of color running for political office in the United States, some of whom have garnered historic wins: London Breed became San Francisco’s first black female elected mayor, Stacey Abrams became the first black woman major party nominee for governor and just this week 28-year-old Latina Alexandria Ocasio-Cortezdefeated an incumbent congressman for his seat.

Also, Nina Simone’s childhood home in Tryon, North Carolina was designated a National Treasure in a ceremony last week. What implications does  this have for the artist’s legacy? Plus, Neal and Bullock Brown review two new artistic meditations on marriage: Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s joint album “Everything Is Love,” and “Love Is __,”a new show on OWN from creator Mara Brock Akil about her love story. They also discuss the second season of “Dear White People” on Netflix and the new EP from Black Thought and 9th Wonder, “Streams Of Thought Vol. 1.”

I don't think we can take away from them the fact they're artistically doing things on a level that can't be rivaled. The way they have interwoven their talents on this album is incredible- Natalie Bullock Brown on 'Everything Is Love'

Natalie Bullock Brown is a filmmaker and adjunct professor, and Mark Anthony Nealis the chair of the department of African and African American studies at Duke University in Durham.

Netflix's "Dear White People"

OWN's "Love Is __"

Anita Rao is an award-winning journalist, host, creator, and executive editor of "Embodied," a weekly radio show and podcast about sex, relationships & health.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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