Merry War on Christmas -- The Religious Right Isn't Going Anywhere

Editor's Note: The idea that Bush's departure and Barack Obama's election herald a decline in power for the Christian Right in America is sorely mistaken. As the "War on Christmas" turns into an annual outrage, and progressives argue against the choice of anti-gay, anti-abortion Pastor Rick Warren to give the invocation at Obama's inauguration, we are reminded all too soon that the Religious Right is a steady force in the political and cultural arena. Frederick Clarkson's essay makes the case that we are in the middle of a religious war --  and that we should always be on alert against it.

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Imagine you've forgotten once again the difference between a gorilla and a chimpanzee, so you do a quick Google image search of “gorilla." But instead of finding images of adorable animals, photos of a Black couple pop up.

Is this just a glitch in the algorithm? Or, is Google an ad company, not an information company, that's replicating the discrimination of the world it operates in? How can this discrimination be addressed and who is accountable for it?

“These platforms are encoded with racism," says UCLA professor and best-selling author of Algorithms of Oppression, Dr. Safiya Noble. “The logic is racist and sexist because it would allow for these kinds of false, misleading, kinds of results to come to the fore…There are unfortunately thousands of examples now of harm that comes from algorithmic discrimination."

On At Liberty this week, Dr. Noble joined us to discuss what she calls “algorithmic oppression," and what needs to be done to end this kind of bias and dismantle systemic racism in software, predictive analytics, search platforms, surveillance systems, and other technologies.

What you can do:
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