Gene Demby

Gene Demby is the lead blogger for NPR's Code Switch team.

Before coming to NPR, he served as the managing editor for Huffington Post's BlackVoices following its launch. He later covered politics.

Prior to that role he spent six years in various positions at The New York Times. While working for the Times in 2007, he started a blog about race, culture, politics and media called PostBourgie, which won the 2009 Black Weblog Award for Best News/Politics Site.

Demby is an avid runner, mainly because he wants to stay alive long enough to finally see the Sixers and Eagles win championships in their respective sports. You can follow him on Twitter at @GeeDee215.

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7:03am

Wed April 2, 2014
Code Switch

Why Aren't Asian-Americans Getting Their 'One Shining Moment'?

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 9:33 am

Jeremy Lin cast a long shadow in this conversation, in part because there are so few Asian-American players to cast them.
Fred Beckham AP

While we were looking at some NCAA stats on student athletes for a story last week, we came across a couple of numbers that made our eyes bulge: of the 5,380 men's basketball players in Division I basketball last season, only 15 were Asian-American. Fifteen.

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5:27am

Fri February 7, 2014
Race

Coke Ad Sparks Cries On Social Media To 'Speak English'

Originally published on Fri February 7, 2014 11:26 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

At some point during tonight's opening ceremonies of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, NBC will run a much-talked about television ad for Coca-Cola.

(SOUNDBITE OF AD)

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #1: (Singing) Oh, beautiful, for spacious skies...

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN #2: (Singing in foreign language)

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3:50pm

Thu December 19, 2013
Code Switch

Is A 'Pathway To Citizenship' The Right Concern?

Immigrants hold miniature U.S. flags as they listen to a video broadcast from President Obama during a naturalization ceremony in New York City.
Bebeto Matthews AP

Much of the debate over whether and how to overhaul the country's immigration policy has hinged on whether and how to create a pathway to citizenship. But a majority of Latinos now say that's less important for unauthorized immigrants than giving them relief from the threat of deportation.

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1:11pm

Wed November 20, 2013
Code Switch

'Go Shorty, It's Your Birthday' And Other Black Bons Mots

Originally published on Wed November 20, 2013 3:26 pm

A quote from Bartlett's Familiar Black Quotations.
NPR

A press copy of a 3-pound book recently came over the wholly metaphorical Code Switch transom. It's called Bartlett's Familiar Black Quotations, and it's kind of amazing.

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1:09pm

Thu October 31, 2013
Code Switch

Code Switch Roundup: Status Symbols, Sriracha And Soul Food

The maker of the popular Thai hot sauce Sriracha hot sauce is under fire — get it? — for allegedly fouling the air around its Southern California production site.
Nick Ut ASSOCIATED PRESS

Here are some things we've been musing on over the last few days. Share yours on Twitter or shout us out in the comments below.

"We shine because they hate us/floss 'cuz they degrade us." After two young, black customers accused the high-end retailer Barneys of racially profiling them after they made expensive purchases there, those customers themselves came in for criticism. Just why were these kids who probably aren't rich spending their money so recklessly?

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6:20pm

Wed October 2, 2013
Code Switch

Howard's President Steps Down Amid Tumult And Uncertainty

Originally published on Wed October 2, 2013 7:55 pm

Sidney Ribeau's tenure saw the university's endowment recover from the 2008 downturn and its alumni giving rate quadruple. But a trustee said the school was in "serious trouble" and called for a no-confidence vote against him.
The Washington Post/Getty Images

Is Howard University facing an existential crisis?

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4:26pm

Sun September 15, 2013
Code Switch

Who's Really Left Out Of The CrossFit Circle

CrossFitters exercise at a gym in Travis, N.Y. A blog posted to CrossFit's Facebook page has opened up a discussion about diversity in the CrossFit community.
Anthony DePrimo Staten Island Advance /Landov

Last week, the headquarters for CrossFit, the popular — and polarizing — workout genre, shared an item on its Facebook page from a blog called Stuff Black People Don't Like.

And according to an entry from February on the Stuff Black People Don't Like blog, CrossFit is anti-black:

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3:36pm

Tue September 10, 2013
Code Switch

New York Man Killed By Attacker In Possible Hate Crime

Originally published on Wed September 11, 2013 11:01 am

Jeffrey Babbitt was struck by a disturbed man as he walked through Manhattan's Union Square Park, above.
Mary Altaffer AP

Jeffrey Babbitt was walking through Union Square last Wednesday, near the Manhattan comic book store that he'd been going to for years, when he had a fatal chance encounter with a stranger.

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11:29am

Tue August 20, 2013
Code Switch

The Dream 9 Pushes The Envelope (And Their Allies' Buttons)

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 4:11 pm

The immigration activists known as the Dream 9 were arrested after attempting to re-enter the United States.
Samantha Sais AP

The national conversation around immigration has shifted dramatically over the past decade. That's in large part because of activists who have pushed to change the narrative around the undocumented.

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5:33pm

Tue August 13, 2013
Code Switch

For a Stop-And-Frisk Plaintiff, A 'Heartbreaking' Birthday

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 1:54 pm

Nicholas Peart, far left, was stopped by police on his 18th birthday.
Richard Drew AP

Not long ago, we wrote about The Talk, the conversation that many young men of color get from their parents about how to manage being seen as suspicious and navigate fraught encounters with police officers. It's why Nicholas Peart's story resonated with us. Peart, who lives in Harlem, was one of the plaintiffs in New York City's big stop-and-frisk case.

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