Why North Carolina Matters In 2020

How competitive will North Carolina be in 2020? We talk about the presidential race, a tough battle for Republican Sen. Thom Tillis and the hyperpolarization of local politics in the state.

Host Jeremy Hobson is joined by Jeff Tiberii (@j_tibs), Capitol Bureau Chief at WUNC and Mary Curtis (@mcurtisnc3), columnist at Roll Call based in Charlotte.

N.C. Officer Charged In Death Of Unarmed Black Man

A North Carolina police officer has been charged with voluntary manslaughter in the shooting death of an unarmed black man.

Officer Randall Kerrick of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department fired 12 shots, ten of which hit 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell, according to authorities.

Ferrell, who had played football for Florida A&M University, was seeking help after crashing his car, according to authorities.

When he knocked on a woman’s door, she called 911 — alarmed to find Ferrell on her doorstep.

When officers arrived at the scene, authorities say Ferrell ran toward officers. When a Taser failed to stop his approach, Kerrick fired.

Now, Reuters reports, civil rights leaders are demanding that video footage of the incident be made public.

Cheerios Ad Sparks Racist Response Online

A Cheerios ad featuring an interracial family — a black husband, a white wife and a biracial child — inspired so many racist comments on YouTube, General Mills disabled the comments.

Cheerios stands by its ad, releasing a statement saying, “At Cheerios, we know there are many kinds of families, and we celebrate them all.”

Journalist  Mary C. Curtis writes in The Washington Post, “Who would have thought that breakfast cereal would trigger the latest racial battle line?”

Ultimately though, Curtis, who is part of an interracial family herself, does not find the backlash surprising — or take it personally.

“Feelings don’t always follow the law or the reality of the lives people now live,” she writes. “The holdouts have to realize that the numbers are hardly going to start moving in the other direction in our increasingly diverse society.”