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Want to Fight Racism? Science Says It Could Be as Easy as Smiling

A new study on “micro-positive” behavior shows that by modeling everyday acts of equality, we help others do the same.

image via (cc) flickr user mullhaupt

It’s been a long, difficult year for race relations and the fight for equality in the United States. Whether it’s tragic acts of violence in cities like Ferguson, Missouri and Charleston, South Carolina, or the ongoing debate over the Confederate flag, we find ourselves not only confronting how best to address racism currently in our midst, but how to prevent it from perpetuating in the future, as well. These are complicated problems, and ones for which there aren’t, and may never be, easy solutions. But, that doesn’t mean there aren’t simple gestures which can, in their own small ways, help move us toward becoming a more accepting society as a whole.

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Yes, I'm Black; No, You Can't Touch My Hair

The schoolyard adage of "keep your hands to yourself" is a great lesson to keep in mind around black people's hair.



Today, CNN International tackles a problem many people of color, myself included, have experienced over the years: Strangers touching your hair.

Tamara Winfrey Harris tells a story of being in a chain restaurant with her husband when their names were called for a table. Just as the couple rose to go, a middle-aged white woman standing nearby reached out swiftly to touch Winfrey Harris's hair which at the time was styled in natural twists. "She missed by mere seconds, she was actually going to grab my hair as I walked past her," recalled Winfrey Harris who runs the blog What Tami Said. "I turned around and she said, 'Oh, your hair is neat.'"

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