Booker T. Washington High School, Tulsa, Oklahoma (circa 1921)

Today marks the conclusion of the centennial anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre that occurred from May 31st, 1921 to June 1st, 1921 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. One hundred years ago, over 100 people — almost all Black or indigenous people — were killed in a 36-hour barrage of violence that claimed lives and destroyed livelihoods. Greenwood, the Black neighborhood residing north of the train tracks that divided Tulsa in two, collapsed in flames and Black citizens of Tulsa became refugees in a city that they had built. These folks, most of them progeny of Freedpeople who came with Creek indigenous…


There are a few moments in my life when I feel Irish: When I’m at wakes or funerals; when I shake someone’s hand; when I tell a story; when I wink at a loved one; when I rise with the sun. I feel Irish when my hands get dirty or when I nap outside or when I dance. I feel Irish when I tell someone the truth, especially if that truth is tragic.

The rest of the time, I merely feel Irish-American, which is to say I feel white, which is to say I feel the absence of heritage —…


Kawhi Leonard and his unique legacy in the NBA

Central Park is bifurcated. In the space between the crowded lower half of the park and the solitude of its northern portion, where one can get lost in various greenbelts, is a piano that anyone can play.

A line formed behind the piano. The next performer anxiously awaited to play the plain instrument, and his nervousness drew in my attention. He was a young man, a boy really, with angular features that contrasted his sunken chin and pre-pubescent mustache. When the applause for the player before him died, the boy fidgeted his feet towards the piano. He glanced over and…


On the Lowering of the Helmet

I took one step, saw a white light, and that was it. I never played another snap of football again.

The hit was innocuous. You had to squint to see it on film. But by that time, there was already enough accumulated carnage to cause my head to collapse my body onto the seat of a Gatorade cooler. I said a few words to a teammate: I think I got another one. He was shocked, but not surprised. After all, he played the game too.

It was violence, of course, that drew me to…


Exploring the Dangers of Toxic Masculinity in Avengers: Infinity War

*Spoiler Alert*

Star-Lord: Boy.

Masculinity is a mess. Attempting to define it is a messy task. One can best say that masculinity is package of learned or inherited traits and characteristics present in the attitudes and behaviors of humans (one says humans instead of men because, although cismen are considered to be more masculine than feminine, masculinity is present in people who are not cismen). Cultures and societies have tinkered with that package and its contents for ages, adding beliefs and practices to its contents that either promote the better qualities of…


And the Struggle of Black Quarterbacks Against the NFL’s Structural Racism

Lamar Jackson scored a total of 119 touchdowns in his 49 games for the University of Louisville Cardinals. He scored all of them came playing quarterback.

Twenty-five of those scores occurred before Louisville’s game against the second-ranked Florida State Seminoles on September 17th, 2016. Before that matchup, Louisville ranked tenth overall. Their status had everything to do with the game they played week before they squared against Florida State, meaning it had everything to do with their quarterback: Lamar Jackson. Because the week before Louisville played Florida State, Jackson…

Dillon O'Carroll

Writer/Educator

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