As Black History Month comes and goes, television shows that foster black pride also come and go. I understand that many black men attached their self worth and their manhood to the character Bill Cosby made famous. In retrospect, I do not believe we need to look at television to give us our self worth.
The White House group's agenda was deep--with racial concerns about criminal justice, agriculture, education, health care and economic development when African American leaders met with President Barack Obama last week.
Students (young and older) respond to instruction in the way that is expected of them. If taught as if they are slow, students will conform to that perception. Imagine what would happen if we treated all students, from the earliest years through their post-secondary studies, as if there were geniuses inside, simply waiting for recognition.
The ugly truth is white on white crime does exist. It is a growing pandemic in the white community, and if we don't call attention to this problem soon, there will be no more white people left to run the world.
Fitz is an extremely aggressive individual, and I often get scared watching his interactions with both Mellie and Olivia, but somehow the show still paints him as the victim, the "good guy," and I really don't think it is okay.
Fifty years after the bloody Selma march shocked Johnson and the nation into taking fast track action to right a glaring historic wrong, namely the denial of the right to vote to millions in America, that right is still under intense assault. This is why we still need a Selma today.
More often than I would like, I have used this space to decry our shortcomings because we retain and still use capital punishment. This past Sunday, however, marked the 10th anniversary of a high point in our shared history.
Black inequality--inaugurated under slavery and maintained by protean forms of white supremacy--has been central to American society, through to the present day. But where does AIDS fit into this story?
We cannot stay complacent or silent in the face of restrictive voting laws. The best way for us to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Selma is to recreate the energy that forced Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act in the first place.
The people and police officers of Ferguson can ill afford to allow the difficult but necessary reform process that's now underway to be subsumed by petty politics. To plunge headlong into a dialogue defined by the same narrow, reductive, zero-sum talking points that frame so much of our national debate would be an inexcusable mistake.
Ol Parker is back as the screenwriter, and John Madden returns as the director. Both try to give this sequel the same feel as the first, but they've run out of ideas. Buying a new hotel seems like a giddy capitalistic exploit.
Advocacy alone has limited value. Institutions must be led by competent executives and they must produce graduates with a credential that has value in the market place. HBCUs do not deserve support just because of their existence; they deserve the support of their alumni because of what they have done, are doing and are capable of doing.
The U.S. economy created 257,000 jobs in January. While this is a positive sign, shouldn't the Department of Labor be more nuanced in their job creation calculations? Wouldn't a better indicator be to delineate between jobs and quality jobs? But this raises the question of what constitutes a quality job.
Much like the great Sammy Davis, Jr., the unicycle ensemble from the South Bronx beat the naysayers and racists, as well as the pitfalls of their neighborhood with their talent. They achieved this while breaking down barriers and leaving a smooth trail of unicycle tracks for others, like myself, to follow.
Watching Common and John Legend make history in what was an emotionally moving performance of "Glory," and win the Academy Award for Best Original Song was more than I could have dreamed. Everything else paled in comparison, and it wasn't long before we called it a night.
For those of us from the "multiracial" or mixed race community, photos of our population -- our people, our families, our children -- aren't as shocking as they are an affirmation of what we have already known: Race is a social construct.
Like its contemporaries N.W.A. and Ice-T, Miami's 2 Live Crew emerged as one of hip-hop's most controversial groups. Transforming lewd party songs into cultural lighting rods, the group was at the center of one of music's contentious First Amendment debates.
Though the group is mostly linked with Miami, its earliest incarnation has roots in California with original members Fresh Kidd Ice (Chris Wong Won), DJ Mister Mixx (David Hobbs) and Amazing V (Yuri Veliot). After the crew's first song 'Revelation' became popular in Florida, they moved to Miami.
Soon after, Brother Marquis (Mark Ross) joined the fold, replacing Amazing V, and local music impresario Luther Campbell signed the act to his Luke Skyywalker label. Campbell, who also doubled as their manager, joined the group eventually and guided it into doing rap music with graphic sexual content and uptempo Miami bass sound.
Their 1986 debut, 'The 2 Live Crew Is What We Are' featured raunchy tunes like 'We Want Some P*ssy' and 'Throw the D.' By the time their sophomore record, 'Move Something,' dropped in 1987, Campbell decided to release 'clean' and 'dirty' versions.
But it wasn't until 1989's 'As Nasty As They Wanna Be' that 2 Live Crew really started causing a stir. In particular, local religious activist Jack Thompson led the charge to get the album deemed obscene by Florida state law. He succeeded when in June 1990, a district court judge handed down his verdict, making it illegal to sell the album in the state. 2 Live Crew members were arrested at subsequent live shows and a media circus ensued.
Scholar Henry Louis Gates even got involved to argue on the group's behalf. And surprisingly, the album sold more than two million copies nationwide, with curious parents and angsty teens wanting to understand (and listen to) what all the fuss was about.
By 1992, the obscene charged was overturned by Supreme Court decision, but the group emerged as a signifier of how far rap lyrics could go. As a result, the group has inspired generations of strip club rap.
Recently, Campbell has attempted to change his image in failed Miami mayoral bid. The group was honored at last year's VH1 Hip-Hop Honors awards ceremony.
Influenced...Ludacris, Khia, Pitbull, Lil Jon, Trina, Trick Daddy, Rick Ross, DJ Khaled, among others.
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