The Root of Good Writing

When I’m not teaching, I try to keep my journalism skills sharp by writing for theroot.com. I want to make sure I don’t forget what it feels like to have to report and write stories and file them on deadline–all the things I ask my students to do!

The Root is a news and views website targeted to African Americans. The Washington Post launched it two years ago as a sister (sistah?) site to the website slate.com. It is the brainchild of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates. You know him: He was the target of racially-motivated harassment by Cambridge, Massachusetts police last year. He ended up having a “beer summit” with President Obama and the officer who stopped him from trying to “break in” to his own home.

Anyway, these days Joel Dreyfuss, a City College alum, runs the site. Check it out. And read my latest article which looks at a newly uncovered biomedical experiment in Guatemala that echoes the notorious and much-apologized-for Tuskegee Study of African-American men with syphillis.

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