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Meet Your Host
Dr. Shelley Stewart

Season One

Internalized Racism

This episode is taken from an interview that took place in 1993 with Brother Ezekwa. Institutionalized racism leads many Blacks to think less of themselves and each other. They come to believe the stereotypes of the messages of oppression that are continually served by not only the media and external sources but also by friends, family, and authority figures. They have been told for so long that they are "less than..." that they eventually begin to believe it. The podcast also touches upon the 4 types of internalized racism:

1. Interpersonal Racism

2. Institutionalized Racism

3. Structural Racism

4. Internalized Racism

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Did Dr. Martin Luther King's Dream Become a Nightmare?

As a member of the King's Inner Circle, Hosea Williams served as the advance man, organizing some of the most important events in the movement. Williams traveled to cities throughout the South, recruiting and organizing volunteers, paving the way for appearances by Dr. King, Jesse Jackson, and Andrew Young.Williams and John Lewis led the "Bloody Sunday" march in Selma, Alabama, in 1965.


This episode features an interview from September of 1994 with Dr. Shelley Stewart and RevHosea Williams. Hosea reveals the dire warning Dr. King

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Homelessness affects a diverse range of individuals. It is not limited to a particular demographic, but can impact people of different ages, genders, races, and backgrounds. Among those who are homeless are individuals experiencing mental health issues, addiction, domestic violence survivors, veterans, youth, families with children, and individuals facing economic challenges such as unemployment or poverty.


In this episode, Shelley replays an interview from April 6, 1993, where he meets with a former professional football player who has become homeless. The episode also features a harrowing excerpt from his memoir, The Road South, which depicts traumatic events and abuse from his youth (listener discretion is advised). The podcast concludes with a powerful lesson Shelley learned in a bar while working in St. Louis as the disc jockey, "Shelley the Playboy."

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Hate Crimes

Hate crimes have devastating impacts on individuals, communities, and society. Victims often suffer physical and emotional harm, leading to trauma and decreased sense of safety. Hate crimes also fuel fear, division, and mistrust within communities, contributing to social inequalities and damaging social cohesion. They erode trust in law enforcement and the justice system and have negative implications for economic development. Additionally, hate crimes perpetuate harmful stereotypes and attitudes toward targeted groups. Combating hate crimes through education, advocacy, and community engagement is crucial to promote inclusivity, tolerance, and a society that rejects hate and embraces diversity.

This episode features an interview from March 1993 with Attorney Rodney Max, a member of the Coalition Against Hate Crimes. They discuss the trial of a hate crime killing of a homeless person in Birmingham. He offers positive solutions to the problem. He says, "Before I prejudge you, let me get to know you.

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Is There A Need For HBCUs?

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have advantages such as fostering a sense of community and pride, providing a supportive environment, and offering diverse faculty and notable alumni. However, HBCUs may also face challenges such as limited resources, stigma, potential limitations in academic programs, and persistent inequalities. Recognizing the strengths and limitations of HBCUs is crucial in promoting access and success for Black students in higher education while addressing the challenges to ensure equitable opportunities for all students, regardless of their race or background.

In this episode, Shelley replays an interview with Carol Watkins and Leslie Prawl from October of 1991.

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Should We End Black History Month?

Black History Month has been celebrated for decades as a time to honor and recognize the contributions and achievements of Black individuals throughout history. However, some argue that relegating Black history to a single month perpetuates segregation and fails to fully integrate it into the mainstream curriculum. Ending Black History Month could be beneficial, as it would emphasize that Black history is an integral part of American history that should be incorporated into educational curricula throughout the year. By integrating Black history into the broader narrative, we can foster a more inclusive and comprehensive understanding of our shared past, promoting equality and unity.

The podcast features an interview with Dr. Horace Huntley in February 1991 and suggests that by ending Black History Month, we might celebrate Black culture and history throughout the year.

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Youth Gangs

In 1989, two gang members from the Birmingham area approached Shelley and asked to be on his show, "Open Mic." They wanted to share their experiences about the myths and realities of gang life and share their regrets over the youth they lost while acting as members of a gang. Ironically, the mother of one of the gang members heard her son on the show and came in the following morning to share her feelings and warnings with other parents.

While the nature of gang life has changed between 1989 and 2023, there are a surprising number of things that are still in common. In fact, you might be surprised to discover the backgrounds of many gang members are not what you think.

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Part 2 of Youth Gangs & Drug Dealers Series

Today’s episode reaches back to 1986 and was part of a series of interviews Shelley did on Open Mic with drug dealers and youth gangs.

This individual had a promising career as a backup drummer for the well-known blues musician Bobby “Blue” Bland. 

Unfortunately, the lure of easy money pulled him into the world of dealing cocaine, Although he didn’t start dealing drugs until he was 44 years old.


He shares stories about how, at that time, cocaine was cut with laxatives and even embalming fluid, and how the cutting agents were often more dangerous than the drug itself.


He finishes his story by recounting the death of his cousin and fiance at the hands of three drug users.

Stay tuned and learn from his life as we continue this series on youth gangs and drug dealers.

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Part 3 of Youth Gangs & Drug Dealers Series

This episode concludes our series on youth gangs and drug dealers with an interview of a young man who began dealing drugs at the age of 16.


He was brought into a gang at the age of 10 and exposed to the life of a drug dealer. During that time, he’d seen fellow gang members killed and maimed. He even shares a harrowing description of mutilation that happened to a fellow gang member. Listener discretion is advised.

He finally realizes what he missed and what he lost, and he shares a message with other young people.

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Interview with Jim Porter from the NRA

Shelley sat down in 1993 for an interview with Jim Porter, a member of the Board of Directors of the NRA. The arguments have not changed for the past 30 years, yet the problem of gun violence persists and, in fact, continues to grow in 2023. Shelley explores the challenges that existed in 1993 and compares them to today.

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