Brentin Mock

Brentin Mock

Brentin Mock is a staff writer at CityLab. He was previously the justice editor at Grist.

Mapping Childish Gambino’s Atlanta

A transplant to Atlanta from Pakistan (via London) has mapped the story of Atlanta as told through the songs of some of the city’s most famous rappers.

In Search of the ‘Just City’

Toni Griffin, one of the leading black women in architecture and design, is leading her students at Harvard in envisioning and designing the "just city." And it looks different in Boston than it does in Rotterdam.

Mapping the Segregation of Metro Atlanta’s Amenities

A new mapping project shows how segregation is a matter of whether you have close access to a grocery store, hospital, bank, or park—amenities that influence your quality of life.

Wyatt Cenac Is Here to Solve Your Policing Problems

In his new HBO series “Problem Areas,” comedian-actor Wyatt Cenac takes a crack at solving police racism.

The Deal That Might Just Break Georgia Into Pieces

This would be the de-gentrification of the city of Stockbridge, with its wealthy areas carved away for a new city while remaining residents pick up the substantial tab left behind.

New York Democratic gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon, center, joins with May Day protesters on Wall Street on Tuesday, May 1, 2018, in New York. Workers and activists marked May Day with rallies around the world.

Should Cynthia Nixon Apologize for Her 'Reparations' Comment?

New York gubernatorial candidate and former “Sex and the City” co-star Cynthia Nixon has a pretty progressive campaign platform on racial equity and cannabis legalization—so what’s the problem?

Leon Ford, center, in a wheelchair, is surrounded by friends and colleagues in Pittsburgh.

How to Survive a Police Shooting When You're Black

Pittsburgh activist Leon Ford explains in his new book, Untold, how to get lifted up, and how to lift a city up, even after being shot by its police.

The Miseducation of Kanye West

Kanye West wants to develop cities. Don’t let him do this.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf Is Not Backing Down

Oakland's outspoken mayor talks about standing up for racial equity, and staring down the federal government on cannabis and immigration.

Getting High is a Civil Right

James Forman Jr.’s book Locking Up Our Own, which won a Pulitzer prize this week, shows how plans to decriminalize cannabis to help black people were derailed in Washington, D.C. in 1975, by black people.

A plain-clothed police officer mans a position behind the counter at the Starbucks that has become the center of protests in Philadelphia.

Suspiciously Black in Starbucks

Starbucks doesn't need to close its stores for bias trainings. It needs to change its entire design so that it doesn’t merely reflect the character of host neighborhoods, especially if that character is racist.

Atlanta's Cityhood Movement Might Be Out of Control

If Georgia allows the new city of Eagle’s Landing to form, it will set new precedents that could be racially and economically damaging to metro Atlanta.

The Art of Boostin’ from High-End Fashion Stores

The guys who made names off of boostin’ from high-end stores in the 1980s, like Dapper Dan and the Lo-Lifes, are now getting props, but women boosters have not enjoyed the same embrace. Artist Jamea Richmond-Edwards hopes to change that with her new exhibit, “Fly Girl Fly.”

The Evolution of Domestic Spying Since MLK in Memphis

Memphis began spying on local activists around the time when Martin Luther King came to advocate for city sanitation workers. A 1976 consent decree was supposed to put an end to that, but a new pending lawsuit against the city suggests it's still happening.

The Economic Injustices of Memphis in Five Charts

In the years since Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis fighting for economic justice, whatever progress black families and workers have made has been dwarfed by the economic trajectory of whites in the county.

A Revival of the 'Green Book' for Black Travelers

The Post-Racial Negro Green Book questions whether it’s safe yet for black people to travel around America freely.

How to Start Your Own City

A year ago this week, Jason Lary was sworn in as mayor of his brainchild, the brand new city of Stonecrest outside of Atlanta. Now Stonecrest is a frontrunner to land the new Amazon headquarters. How’d he do it?

Resilience Trutherism, Explained

There is a movement of people who believe that “climate resilience” is a Trojan horse for a global takeover of cities via weather manipulation, and a D.C. city council member may subscribe to that idea.

Atlanta: A Tale of New Cities

All around this majority-black community, the region’s cityhood movement has expanded. Now South DeKalb residents are faced with the question: Should they form a new city too?

The Quest for a New Black City in Georgia

A key state deadline this week determines whether predominantly African-American communities just outside Atlanta can vote to start their own city.