There are few more powerful topics for conversation in today’s America than race and racism.
In 2020, KNPR’s State of Nevada did what we do best: convened a series of community conversations to better understand how questions of race and racism affect each and every one of us. Those discussions included:
• African-American History in Southern Nevada hosted by Las Vegan Lark McCarthy, who previously worked as one of the most-respected news anchors in Washington, D.C. We look at the history of segregation along the Las Vegas Strip, the story of The Historically Black Westside and recent Black Lives Matter protests, and we will discuss what they say about us and where we live.
• Asian-Americans and foreign-born Asians have impacted the Las Vegas economy and this region’s culture during the past 20 years, building strong ties with South China and The Philippines, placing us on the map for foreign travelers and investors, as well as healthcare and tech-workers seeking to live in the United States. We asked where does Las Vegas fit it in along The Pacific Rim, and how could that define our future?
• LatinX people have transformed every aspect of life here from food to music to politics, in many ways returning the cultural feel of this region to its earlier roots when Mexico controlled the American Southwest. We discussed the classic challenges faced by all immigrants and first-generation Americans in this country: how to hold onto your past while embracing your present and future.
• Native American people continue to populate this region, with Las Vegas Paiutes operating a golf resort and two tribal smoke shops, but their story here, which often goes untold, stretches back centuries. The Moapa Band of Paiute Indians live in seclusion, near Moapa. We discuss the economic and cultural challenges faced by the native people.
NPR Host Sam Sanders joined us to wrap up our series as we touched upon the many issues raised throughout these conversations.
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