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Stateside: Afrofuturism; MI Catholics call for accountability; children’s mental health lawsuit

a painting of two black men with sunglasses brightly colored patterns
Courtesy of Norwest Gallery
Curator Asia Hamilton says that Afrofuturism is "futuristic and scientific ideas, ancient African traditions. It's like reimagining our culture had it been untouched by Western society."

Today on Stateside, we hear from two Catholics who have been pushing for changes in their dioceses in response to the allegations of sexual abuse by priests. Plus, Afrofuturism was spotlighted for an international audience in last year’s wildly successful film Black Panther. But the philosophy and art of Afrofuturism have had a home in Detroit for decades.

Listen to the full show above or find individual conversations below.

Catholic lay groups emerge to hold Michigan bishops accountable for clergy abuse

Stateside’s conversation with Jason Negri and Richard Brenz

  • On Thursday, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel will report on the state's investigation into sexual abuse committed by priests in Michigan, going back to 1950. Stateside talks to two Catholics who have  been pushing for accountability and oversight within their own dioceses in the wake of the sexual abuse allegations.
  • Jason Negri is co-founder and executive director of the Daniel Coalition in the Lansing Diocese. Dr. Richard Brenz is co-founder of the Gaylord Diocesan Watch.

Afrofuturism found spotlight in "Black Panther," but movement has been going strong in Detroit for decades

Stateside’s conversation with Bree Gant and Adrienne Ayers

  • The release of Black Panther one year ago was a major cultural moment. And the audiences who flocked to see the film, whether they knew it or not, seeing a story inspired by Afrofuturism. Stateside talked to two Detroiters who have found inspiration in the influential school of thought.
  • Bree Gant is the photographer and filmmaker behind Afrofuturepast, a two-part dance film set in Detroit. Adrienne Ayers is the founder of Afrofuture Youth, an after-school program that gives black high schoolers in the city another outlet to learn, create, and explore.

How Afrofuturism is influencing artists in Detroit and beyond

Stateside’s conversation with Asia Hamilton

  • The art and aesthetics of Afrofuturism are on display this month in an exhibition called "Supreme: A Voyage to Afrofuturism." We talk to Norwest Gallery of Art curator Asia Hamilton about the exhibit and Afrofuturism’s origins at the intersection of science fiction and the African diaspora.

The pioneering black engineer behind the Ambassador Bridge and the Windsor-Detroit tunnel

Stateside’s conversation with Rashid Faisal and Rachel Clark

  • Ninety years ago, builders were hard at work building the iconic Ambassador Bridge. However, one of the architects of that bridge, Cornelius L. Henderson, is just now starting to get some recognition.
  • Rashid Faisal is director of faculty and instruction at Old Redford Academy District, and the author of an article about Henderson in Michigan History Magazine. Rachel Clark is with the Michigan History Center. They joined Stateside to tell us more about the pioneering African-American engineer responsible for the innovative design of the Ambassador Bridge, as well as the Windsor-Detroit tunnel.

As parents struggle to find mental health services for their kids, class action lawsuit argues state could do more

Stateside’s conversation with David Honigman

  • Providers, advocates and parents agree: when it comes to children's mental health care, the options in Michigan are too few and far between. And this reality has spurred a class action lawsuit. We talk to former state senator and representative David Honigman, who is the lead attorney for the plaintiffs about the lawsuit’s allegation that the state has failed to meet its legal obligation under Medicaid to provide adequate services for children with behavioral and mental health problems.
  • We reached out to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services for comment on the case and they provided this statement: "We cannot comment on ongoing litigation, however, MDHHS is committed to working with partners to address mental health needs in Michigan."

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