This is the web version of raceAhead, Fortune’s daily newsletter on race, culture, and inclusive leadership. To get it delivered daily to your inbox, sign up here.
Stephen Curry gives social distancing an all-star assist, The New York City Ballet cancels its season but will pay all employees, and we say goodbye to a Globetrotting legend.
But first, here’s your week in review in Haiku.
Please, love the cherry
blossoms from a distance. Let
their faithful presence
be a promise: “Next
year, when this is all over,
you can stand under
my branches, you can
even selfie covered in
my petals!” You must
choose: Do you want to
a patient hero or a
tale? The joys of the
world will return. Sit and wait
to be welcomed back.
Have a patiently joyous weekend. We appreciate being a part of your lives.
Stephen Curry takes real talk about coronavirus and social distancing directly to the fans Clearly, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is the medical hero we all need now. While his science-based information and advice was in danger of getting lost in partisan bickering and stagecraft, it took Warriors point guard Stephen Curry to make sure his message reached the masses. Yesterday, the pair went on Instagram Live and had a clear, substantive conversation about the disease to a concurrent audience of 50,000, including former President Barack Obama and Justin Bieber. But the power is in the reach: Curry gave Fauci potential access his 44 million social media followers. "We’re not overreacting, right?" Curry asking Fauci about the need for social distancing. "You’re absolutely right, this is serious business."
USA Today Opinion
Curly Neal, the beloved Harlem Globetrotter, has died Fred "Curly" Neal played more than 6,000 games and 22 seasons for the Harlem Globetrotters, a trailblazer in both the sport and life. The Globetrotters were well-named—they literally traveled the globe, delighting audiences with their exceptional moves. In a world not yet beset by cable television, Curly was one of the first players fans came to know and love. "It was Curly's magical ball-handling, shooting, charismatic smile and iconic bald head in more than 6,000 games in 97 countries, that made [people] start to play and fall in love with the game," the Globetrotters said in a statement.
New York City Ballet cancels season but will pay employees Losing the spring season will cost the cultural institution about $8 million, but they plan to pay all dancers, musicians, and other staffers through the end of their planned season. “Because a dancer’s career is so finite, losing a season like this is going to have a lasting impact on them, emotionally and physically,” Jonathan Stafford, the company’s artistic director told the New York Times. “We’re trying to do everything we can to support them off the stage.”
New York Times
The model minority in the time of pandemic Michael Kraus and Eunice Eun, both from Yale’s School of Management, argue that the anti-Asian racism that has been unleashed by COVID-19 is symptomatic of deeper issues associated with the model minority myth. In a culture that prizes whiteness, progress is the real myth. “Racial equality, even for seemingly high-status model minority groups is not something that unfolds automatically with the passage of time,” they write. Further, the stereotypes associated with high-status Asian demographics — good at math, polite, hard-working, strong family values — encourage people to overestimate the degree to which individuals of Asian descent are thriving. Until something goes wrong. Embedded in the model minority framing is the idea of “foreignness.” “This foreignness component, when paired with a foreign viral contaminant spreading to people across the U.S. and the world, heightens bigotry and racism toward Asian communities,” they say.
Yale School of Management
People don’t nearly loot or resort to violence in emergencies as much as people think While scenes of widespread panic, lawlessness, and chaos are popular in disaster films, research shows that for the most part, people tend to act rationally in times of collective disaster. “When we become aware of the possibility of danger we talk about it with those around us, sharing information and trying to understand the situation,” says Samantha Montano, writing in Scientific American. “We then make rational decisions about how to protect ourselves.” This myth is also rooted in the unhelpful notion that survivors are helpless victims. In fact, they are by definition the first responders.
Got some time on your hands? Head to Crip Camp In this essay, Maysoon Zaid, an actor, comedian, and activist with cerebral palsy (and a raceAhead favorite) reviews Crip Camp, a new documentary that premiered this week on Netflix. She begins by sharing her experience as the only disabled kid at a traditional summer camp. “As I dragged myself up the Appalachian Trail, I could never have imagined that decades earlier a camp existed for kids like me. Crip Camp tells the story of that fantastical place I never knew existed that changed the course of disabled history in America,” she says. The story follows a teenaged Jim Lebrecht, now a disability rights activist, but then a kid in a wheelchair whose life was about to be changed by the hippies who ran Camp Jened in Hunter, New York. Crip Camp is the latest from Higher Ground, the production company founded by Barack and Michelle Obama. “I highly recommend putting it first on your pandemic playlist,” says Zaid.
Tamara El-Waylly produces raceAhead and manages the op-ed program.
“Listen up dipshits and sensible people. I might not have the best bedside manner. I might not put you at ease like the Governor does. But I don’t care. You need to realize that this is a serious ordeal. In fact, it’s a big f**cking deal. Stay at home.”
—Gabe Brown, the mayor of Walton, Kentucky, in an epic Facebook rant. Walton, Kentucky, is four square miles of “friendly” about 30 minutes south of Cincinnati.