Photo Illustration: Sarah Grillo. Logo: Miranda Leung/Axios. Photos: Bettmann, Stephen F. Somerstein/Getty Images

Hard Truths is an Axios series exploring the impact of race in America.

Why it matters: If you’re white or rich, it’s easy to believe that racism is something that ended years ago. But the hard truth is: That’s not supported by facts.

  • Our society, institutions and culture are still filled with barriers that shut out people because of the color of their skin, the origins of where they were born and other factors they can’t control.
  • That didn’t just happen a long time ago. It’s happening right now.

Driving the news: We recognize most newsrooms, including ours, pay too much attention to news of the day, and less time examining what's below the surface.

  • We were challenged on this by an Axios employee, who asked during the nationwide protests this summer: "Why does the news media spend all its time focusing just on events like this and then move on, instead of explaining systemic racism?"

Between the lines: We know that some of you will be skeptical.

  • We promise that Hard Truths — like all Axios coverage — will be grounded in facts, clinical and clear-eyed, so you get the full picture.

What’s next: Each month, we'll examine a fresh topic. Our project begins on Saturday with voting. In coming months, we’ll explore education, housing, technology, sports, health care and more. You’ll find this coverage:

  • In special Saturday bonus editions of Axios AM.
  • On in a new "Deep Dive" format.
  • On a special edition of our "Axios Today" podcast that will accompany each new topic.
  • On "Axios on HBO."

The bottom line: Our goal is to equip you with facts showing the full picture of race in America — a topic long overdue for this nation and its leaders to confront.

Go deeper: Our first installment, on race and voting in America.

Go deeper

Oct 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Florida voting activist: Restoring felon rights "has caught on like a wildfire"

Desmond Meade, executive director of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, said at an Axios virtual event on Tuesday that Florida's ballot initiative restoring voting rights to 1.4 million has inspired a movement across the country, even in Republican-led states like Iowa.

The big picture: Meade, a former felon who rebuilt his life and graduated from law school after a drug-related conviction, helped lead the fight to pass Amendment 4 in Florida in 2018 — the largest single expansion of voting rights in the U.S. in half a century.

Oct 20, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Voting rights activist: 800,000 Latino citizens turn 18 every year

Lydia Camarillo, president of the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project, said at an Axios virtual event on Tuesday that 800,000 Latino citizens turn 18 every year, meaning that there could be more than 3 million new registered voters in four years — not including naturalized citizens.

The big picture: The 2020 election marks the first time in history that Latinos will be the largest minority ethnic or racial group in the electorate, with 32 million eligible voters.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Politics: Ex-FDA chief: Pence campaigning after COVID exposure puts others at risk — Mark Meadows: "We are not going to control the pandemic"— COVID-19 looms over White House Halloween celebrations.
  2. Health: 13 states set single-day coronavirus case records last week — Fauci says maybe we should mandate masks if people don't wear themU.S. reports over 80,000 new cases for second consecutive day.
  3. World: Italy tightens restrictions Spain declares new state of emergency.