When Amy Webb broke her ankle, she was forced to hobble around on a walking boot. That inconvenience spawned others: among them, she couldn’t pass through the metal detector at airport TSA PreCheck lines any longer. Instead, she had to use the backscatter machines that produce X-ray images of passengers.
It was all good stuff, and it sounded like everybody was on the same page. And then the aura of polite togetherness was punctured when Kamau Bobb, who works on diversity strategy for Google and is the founder of the Constellations Center for Equity in Computing at Georgia Tech, delivered a smoldering keynote address that focused not so much on feel-good tech outreach programs but on the state of black folks in Atlanta, a majority-black city where black people are assumed to be thriving. They’re not.