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Chris Matthews to Host MLK Day Special

“Hardball” host Chris Matthews will moderate a live MSNBC special titled “Obama’s America: 2010 and Beyond” on Martin Luther King Day from Texas Southern University. Radio host Tom Joyner will also appear with Matthews and a series of panelists for the two-hour event, which airs at 10pmET on January 18th. Press release after the jump.


MSNBC PREMIERES “OBAMA’S AMERICA: 2010 AND BEYOND,” A TWO-HOUR SPECIAL EVENT ON RACE RELATIONS IN AMERICA, ON MARTIN LUTHER KING DAY, JAN. 18, 10PM-12AM

NEW YORK – Jan. 7, 2010 – One year after the inauguration of the first African-American President, MSNBC will present “Obama’s America: 2010 and Beyond,” Jan. 18, 10 p.m.-12 a.m. ET, an extended discussion surrounding race and post-racial identity in America. Moderated by “Hardball’s” Chris Matthews and featuring radio host Tom Joyner, live from Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas, this two-hour special event on Martin Luther King Day will explore some of the most pressing and provocative issues connected to race and race relations in the U.S.

“Obama’s America: 2010 and Beyond” will discuss the progress we’ve made in the United States and the challenges we continue to face around racial equality, addressing issues ranging from whether there is such a thing as generational colorblindness, to the “burdens of the first,” and whether there are a unique set of expectations and challenges attached to being the first to break a racial barrier. Panelists include Voto Latino founder and MSNBC analyst Maria Teresa Kumar; Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Associate Professor of Politics and African American Studies at Princeton University; radio talk show host Michael Smerconish; actress and activist Rosie Perez; John McWhorter, senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute; Irshad Manji, author, “The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim’s Call for Reform in Her Faith”; Jeff Johnson, political commentator and journalist.

MSNBC.com will feature additional information on the special and its guests. Tv.msnbc.com will also allow viewers to participate in live votes and continue the discussion online.

TheGrio.com, NBC News’ video-centric news community and opinion site focused on African-American interest and perspectives, will dedicate coverage to the changing racial dynamics in America from January 14-19. TheGrio will explore whether race relations have improved or deteriorated since the election of President Obama and look at whether the rising number of Hispanic-Americans will create a ‘black/brown’ tension amongst African-Americans and Latinos.

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