Perspectives

Current “Hyper-Racial” Culture is Covered Full-time by AP Reporter Errin Whack


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In November 2017, Errin Whack was appointed to be the Race and Ethnicity Writer for the Associated Press.
She works closely with the Race and Ethnicity team dedicated to covering “race, culture and politics” in a changing and volatile America.
The Associated Press says it has developed a team that can focus on the complicated issues of race and provide rapid responses to racial issues developing across the country.
“America is currently hyper-racial,” Whack says.
She thinks, therefore, that stories about race are more important now than ever.
“The election of President Obama caused a huge racial backlash that people didn’t pay enough attention to at the time,” Whack adds.
Some people felt threatened by the racial progress of having a black President and it was those feelings of fear and unrest that President Trump tapped into during his 2016 election, according to Whack.
Trump fanned the flames of fear during his “Birther Movement” under President Obama and those fears continued and were magnified during the Trump presidential campaign. We are now seeing the results of that fear evidencing itself in many ways, Whack adds.
Whack is not a novice at covering racial matters. She started her journalism career writing for a black newspaper in her hometown of Atlanta. Since then, she has worked for the “Washington Post, “The Orlando Sentinel”, and the “Los Angeles Times”. Her worked also has been featured by NBC News, NPR, Politico Magazine, Time.com, BuzzFeed, Fusion, The Guardian, and City Lab.
Whack was named the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists’ 2016 Print Journalist of the Year. She also was tapped as the Emerging Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists and Print Journalist of the Year by the Atlanta Press Club.