Tag: Black Lives Matter

Jews For Racial and Economic Justice Hold Black Lives Matter Rally in New York

PHOTO CREDIT: ERIK MCGREGOR/PACIFIC PRESS/LIGHTROCKET VIA GETTY IMAGES

article by Amber Mckynzie via essence.com

Black Lives Matter doesn’t mean only Black people think black lives matter. And New York’s Jewish community proved that last Thursday when Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ) marched and rallied in the name of BLM in Brooklyn’s Park Slope neighborhood.

According to ParkSlopeStoop.com, JFREJ held a successful and peaceful rally “protest police violence against people of color, and demand police accountability through the passage of the City Council’s Right To Know Act.”

Beginning at Jay Z’s formerly-owned Barclay’s Center, Yehudah Webster, JFREJ member and leader of Jews of Color, began a call and response chant on his microphone. “Even though we are angry at the injustice of police brutality,” Webster said, and the crowd responded, “we gather here for love, for lost brothers and sisters, our communities and each other.”

JFREJ explained why they were marching by saying, “Jews say Black Lives Matter not only because we know what it is to be oppressed, but also because police violence against Black people is deeply personal for Black members of the Jewish community.”Take a look at the march moving from Brooklyn to New York’s Bond street below.  ParkSlopeStoop.com also reports that while also rallying to let people know Black Jews Matter, protestors also “called for the fair passage of the Right to Know Act, which has two primary components: “Requiring NYPD officers to identify themselves” (Intro 182) and “Protecting New Yorkers against unconstitutional searches” (Intro 541).”

Source: Jewish Community Holds Black Lives Matter Rally in New York | Essence.com

WNBA President Lisa Borders Withdraws Player Fines Regarding Anti-Violence Shirts

WNBA President Lisa Borders (photo via nytimes.com)
WNBA President Lisa Borders (photo via nytimes.com)

article via espn.go.com

NEW YORK — The WNBA has withdrawn its fines for teams and players who showed support of citizens and police involved in recent shootings by wearing black warm-up shirts before games.

WNBA president Lisa Borders applauds the league’s players for taking a stance on social issues. She just wishes the activism was kept off the court.  Borders said in a statement Saturday that the league was rescinding penalties given to the Indiana Fever, New York Liberty, Phoenix Mercury and their players for wearing the shirts during pregame protests, which began after shootings in Minnesota and Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

“While we expect players to comply with league rules and uniform guidelines, we also understand their desire to use their platform to address important societal issues,” Borders said. “Given that the league will now be suspending play until August 26 for the Olympics, we plan to use this time to work with our players and their union on ways for the players to make their views known to their fans and the public.”

Borders also tweeted her support for the players.

Each organization had been fined $5,000 and players were each given a $500 penalty because WNBA rules state that uniforms may not be altered in any way. The normal fine for uniform violations is $200.

The fines seemed to galvanize the players, who have used postgame interview sessions and social media to voice their displeasure. There has also been public criticism of the fines, including from New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony.

“It’s a huge win overall,” said Fever All-Star Tamika Catchings, who is president of the WNBA players’ union. “I think more than anything I told [Borders] at times you’re going to agree to disagree. With this, I’m really proud of the players standing strong and for utilizing their voices. Change starts with us. We have a social responsibility as well.”

The Rev. Al Sharpton said early Saturday that his organization, the National Action Network, would pay the $500 fines. He called the penalty “unacceptable.”

The Liberty wore the plain black shirts four times, including Wednesday against Washington. Indiana and Phoenix donned the shirts Tuesday night before their nationally televised game.

“We commend Lisa Borders for recognizing how the players of the WNBA felt and the sensitive time that we’re living in and being willing to re-evaluate their decision,” Liberty president Isiah Thomas said. “We are also very proud of our players; the world is seeing what we already knew. They’re truly incredible, thoughtful and talented individuals. Our league, our partners and our society are better because of our players’ willingness to enter the political and social activism arena.”

The fines were administered Wednesday, and neither the Fever nor the Liberty wore the shirts at their matinee game Thursday. Tina Charles did wear her warm-up shirt inside-out in honor of a shooting in Florida that morning.

Charles said she was happy that the league rescinded the fines. She has donated her entire salary this year to her charity — Hopey’s Heart Foundation — so the withdrawn fine means more money that will help buy automated external defibrillators.  Still, she said it was “embarrassing” that the players had been fined in the first place.

To read full article, go to: http://espn.go.com/wnba/story/_/id/17131967/wnba-withdraws-fines-regarding-anti-violence-shirts

EDITORIAL: Serena Williams Wins 7th Wimbledon Title, 22nd Grand Slam and Makes Us All Feel Like Champions

Serena Williams ended her yearlong pursuit of Steffi Graf’s mark for Open-era Grand Slam wins by defeating Angelique Kerber in straight sets in the Wimbledon final Saturday. (Credit: Andy Rain/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images)

by Lori Lakin Hutcherson, GBN Editor-in-Chief (@lakinhutcherson)

I don’t know about anyone else, but I really needed this today.  I specifically set my alarm this morning to wake me at 6AM (PST) to watch Serena Williams compete for her seventh – yes, take that in – seventh Wimbledon title, and to tie Steffi Graf for the most Grand Slams won in the Open Era.

I’ll admit, regardless of the week of continued brutality and violence by police against black citizens and the gut-wrenching retaliation in Dallas because of such violence, as a lifelong fan, I most likely would have been up and watching Serena anyway.  But because of its timing, this victory – this continued rising, this perseverance – was that much more coveted, and that much sweeter.

Although Williams did not mention or comment on what’s been happening in America as she accepted her trophy, don’t think she’s remained silent in the media about it.  On her Twitter (which we here at GBN happily follow), she spoke directly to the recent atrocities and let us know they were on her mind days before this most crucial, career-defining match:

This tweet leads me to speculate that Serena was that much more focused, that much more centered and that much more desirous of the outcome that occurred – because she knew in her heart she wasn’t just winning her 22nd Grand Slam and making history for herself, but for all of us.

So thank you, Serena – for playing your best tennis today and being so damned undeniable.  You have been and are a shining light and the G.O.A.T. and a champion for the ages.  You are loved and supported in all of your endeavors.  You are #blackexcellence.  (And P.S. having Beyoncé and Jay Z in your box was on point, too! #Freedom #Formation)

Now, to the tennis facts, courtesy of Naila-Jean Meyers via the New York Times: Continue reading “EDITORIAL: Serena Williams Wins 7th Wimbledon Title, 22nd Grand Slam and Makes Us All Feel Like Champions”

H.U.N.T. Movement: The Game, Snoop Dogg Lead March to LAPD Headquarters, Meet with Chief Charlie Beck

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Peaceful H.U.N.T. Protesters marching on Los Angeles Police Headquarters on 7/8/16 (photo via losangelesconfidential @ Instagram)

Rappers and Los Angeles-area natives the Game and Snoop Dogg led a unification march for men of color Friday morning to the Los Angeles Police Department’s graduation of its newest officers, hours after five Dallas police officers were shot and killed and seven others were wounded during a sniper attack.

About 6:30 a.m., the Game posted on his Instagram account a call for black, Mexican and men of all races to march to the Los Angeles Police Department’s headquarters to “make the Californian government & its law branches aware that from today forward, we will be UNIFIED as minorities & we will no longer allow them to hunt us or be hunted by us!!!”

He said women and children should stay away, “THIS IS OUR MISSION FOR THEM,” he wrote.

The Game, a Compton native whose legal name is Jayceon Terrell Taylor, said in his announcement the march had to be peaceful.

“Do not: bring any weapons or anything illegal. Do not come high or belligerent … We don’t need any HOT HEADS or anyone there for the wrong reasons… We will stand as we are, UNIFIED. I’m calling ALL GANGS, ALL RACES, ALL GROWN MEN affiliated or not & we will stand UNIFIED.”

View this post on Instagram

Operation H.U.N.T Meet NOW at Joe's auto park parking 1221 west 3rd street Los Angeles California 90017 Calling: ALL AFRICAN AMERICAN MEN, MEXICAN AMERICAN MEN & any other RACE of REAL MEN with heart to stand with us today & walk peacefully to the LAPD headquarters. [LEAVE ALL WOMEN & CHILDREN AT HOME… THIS IS OUR MISSION FOR THEM] Do not: bring any weapons or anything illegal. Do not come high or belligerent.. We don't need any HOT HEADS or anyone there for the wrong reasons… We will stand as we are, UNIFIED. I'm calling ALL GANGS, ALL RACES, ALL GROWN MEN affiliated or not & WE WILL STAND UNIFIED tomorrow !!!! Our numbers are all the weapons we need !!! We do not need to be dumb, retarded or uncivilized today… ALL WE NEED IS EACH OTHER… I will not lead any of you into a trap !!!!! Objective: to make the Californian government & it's law branches aware that from today forward, we will be UNIFIED as minorities & we will no longer allow them to hunt us or be hunted by us !!! Let's erase the fear of one another on both sides & start something new here in the city of Los Angeles, a city we all love & share ! There are many things that have to be done to rectify this situation that has plagued us for hundreds of years & UNIFICATION is the 1st step !!! Again, I'm asking for ALL of my AFRICAN AMERICAN, MEXICAN AMERICAN & any other AMERICAN who has the heart to STAND WITH US to meet us at the above address & take the 1st step into altering our future for our children & our FAMILIES….I LOVE EVERY ONE OF YOU & WE OWE IT TO OURSELVES & OUR FAMILIES TO BE MEN & TAKE A STAND MY BROTHERS.. THE TIME IS NOW – The Game 📸 @derekdidit

A post shared by The Game (@losangelesconfidential) on

 

Snoop Dogg, whose real name is Calvin Broadus, said organizers didn’t know there was an LAPD recruit graduation scheduled for Friday morning. The point of the march was to reintroduce the Police Department to members of the community it serves, he told reporters at the scene.

About 50 men joined the march to LAPD headquarters.

“The mission is to reintroduce our community to the LAPD… just to get some understanding and dialogue,” he said. “We’re the ones they’re going to be dealing with, we’re the ones that are going to be pulled over. … We’re here on peace.”

The group began planning the march before dawn, the Game said. Organizers spoke with marchers about their unifying, peaceful message so it couldn’t be misconstrued by police, and conversely, so they would listen when law enforcement responded.

“We don’t have to fear each other today,” he said.

The march came amid a growing discussion about law enforcement’s relationship with minorities and was preceded by three days of bloodshed.
Continue reading “H.U.N.T. Movement: The Game, Snoop Dogg Lead March to LAPD Headquarters, Meet with Chief Charlie Beck”

Jesse Williams’ BET Humanitarian Award Speech Was EVERYTHING – Clutch Magazine

BET Humanitarian Award recipient Jesse Williams (photo via clutchmagonline.com)

article via clutchmageonline.com

Actor, activist and entrepreneur Jesse Williams was honored at Sunday night’s BET Awards, and his acceptance speech was everything!The  Advancement Project board member not only gave an emotionally charged speech, but also dedicated his award to his fellow organizers.

“This is for the real organizers all over the country. The activists, the civil rights attorneys, the struggling parents, the families, the teachers of students that are realizing that a system built to divide and impoverish and destroy us cannot stand if we do,” said Williams, who linked arms with Ferguson activists in the wake of Michael Brown’s death in the fall of 2014 and executive-produced Stay Woke, a documentary which traced the evolution of the Black Lives Matter movement and debuted on BET in May.

To see video of his speech, click here: http://www.bet.com/video/betawards/2016/acceptance-speeches/jesse-williams-receives-humanitarian-award.html

Williams also paid homage to black women, who are often times the unsung heroes of the movement.“Black women who have spent their lifetimes dedicated to nurturing everyone before themselves.” “We can and will do better for you,” he said.  Williams reminded attendees to remember those who died and why we’re still fighting to make people understand that black lives do matter. And he also spoke a word about the culture vultures.

Source: Jesse Williams’ BET Humanitarian Award Speech Was EVERYTHING – Clutch Magazine

NBC Renews “The Carmichael Show” Starring Jerrod Carmichael, David Alan Grier and Loretta Devine for a 3rd Season

THE CARMICHAEL SHOW renewed season 3
THE CARMICHAEL SHOW (Photo Courtesy NBC)

article by Elizabeth Wagmeister via Variety.com

After back-and-forth negotiations between NBC and 20th Century Fox Television, “The Carmichael Show” has finally been renewed for a third season. The network and studio have settled on a 13-episode order for Season 3 of the critically-acclaimed comedy.

Inspired by the life and comedy of stand-up comedian Jerrod Carmichael, “The Carmichael Show” follows Jerrod and his opinionated southern family as they reluctantly deal with modern-day America knocking at their front door. The show covers topics of religion, sex, politics, mental health and gender identity, and has tackled controversial subject matter such as Black Lives Matter and the Bill Cosby scandal.

David Alan Grier stars as Carmichael’s father, Loretta Devine plays his devoutly religious mother, Amber Stevens West plays his progressive fiancée, Rel Howery plays his brother and Tiffany Haddish plays Howery’s estranged and outspoken wife.

The series debuted as a summer show with a six-episode run. In its second season, it struggled in the ratings, averaging a 1.2 rating in adults 18-49 and 5.1 million viewers overall in Nielsen’s “live plus-3” estimates. However, NBC does not have any other returning comedies on the 2016-2017 slate, other than “Superstore,” which is getting a hard push Thursday nights this fall.  The critical praise for “Carmichael Show,” in addition to the network’s desire to find a bigger comedy presence, likely helped with the Season 3 renewal.

To read full article, go to: http://variety.com/2016/tv/news/the-carmichael-show-renewed-season-3-nbc-1201775319/

Amandla Stenberg to Star in ‘Black Lives Matter’ Film at Fox 2000 Based on Angela Thomas Novel “The Hate You Gave”

Amanda Stenberg attends the Marc Jacobs Fall 2016 fashion show during New York Fashion Week at Park Avenue Armory on February 18, 2016 in New York City.
Amanda Stenberg attends the Marc Jacobs Fall 2016 fashion show during New York Fashion Week at Park Avenue Armory on February 18, 2016 in New York City. (photo by Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images for Marc Jacobs)

article via thegrio.com

After a heated bidding war over the rights to Angela Thomas’ “The Hate U Gave” novel, Fox 2000 is now set to begin work on a film inspired by the Black Lives Matter book.

The film will see Hunger Games actress Amandla Stenberg as its star, playing the role of a 16-year-old girl named Starr who grew up in the slums but now attends a prep school. When Starr sees her unarmed best friend shot by a police officer, Starr must find a way to speak truth to what she knows even as she walks the balance of two very different worlds.

George Tillman Jr. is set to direct the film, with Audrey Wells writing the script for the film adaptation.  Stenberg, 17, has been extremely outspoken about cultural appropriation and also police violence on social media.

When protests broke out in Baltimore last year in response to the death of Freddie Gray, Stenberg tweeted, “My prayers go out to all my brothers & sisters in Baltimore. This battle is hard but crucial. The revolutionary youth will change the world.”

“Don’t condemn our anger. Don’t denounce our pain as savage. What’s savage is the cruel inhumanity and brutality of the police. Condemn that,” she added.

To read more, go to: http://thegrio.com/2016/03/24/hunger-games-amandla-stenberg-black-lives-matter/

Today’s Winning Google Doodle Invoking Black Lives Matter was Designed by High School Sophomore Akilah Johnson

“My Afrocentric Life,” by Akilah Johnson (courtesy of Google 2016)
“My Afrocentric Life,” by Akilah Johnson (courtesy of Google 2016)

article by Michael Cavna via washingtonpost.com

JUST LAST month, Akilah Johnson was “surprised and overwhelmed” when she learned that she was a national finalist in the “Doodle 4 Google” contest for grade-schoolers.

Akilah, a sophomore at Eastern Senior High School in Northeast Washington, has just been named Google’s big winner in the national contest, topping the 53 state and territory champions, whose work had been culled from about 100,000 student entries.

“It is really overwhelming,” Akilah tells The Post’s Comic Riffs, minutes after receiving the news Monday during a ceremony at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif.  “I was so excited, I started crying,” Akilah says. “I didn’t even look at anybody — I was just looking at the framed copy [of the Doodle] they gave me.”

Akilah is the contest’s first winner from Washington, as D.C. was not eligible to enter the states-only competition in past years. (The Post’s Comic Riffs had joined the chorus of voices urging that the District be included.)

This year’s contest theme was: “What makes me…me.” Akilah drew a box-braided Doodle titled “My Afrocentric Life,” using color pencils, black crayons and Sharpie markers. The Doodle includes symbols of black heritage and signs representing the Black Lives Matter movement.  “Although it felt like forever making this picture, it only took me about two weeks,” Akilah told Comic Riffs last month. Continue reading “Today’s Winning Google Doodle Invoking Black Lives Matter was Designed by High School Sophomore Akilah Johnson”

Jay Z’s Tidal Donates $1.5M to Black Lives Matter and Several Other Social Justice Organizations

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Madonna, Deadmau5, Kanye West, Jay Z and J. Cole onstage at the Tidal launch event #TIDALforALL at Skylight at Moynihan Station on March 30, 2015, in New York City.  (JAMIE MCCARTHY/GETTY IMAGES FOR ROC NATION)

article by Angela Bronner Helm via theroot.com

Jay Z’s fledgling music streaming platform Tidal is donating $1.5 million to Black Lives Matter and several other local and national social justice organizations from money raised at an October concert, reports Mic.

The announcement was made on Friday, the same day Trayvon Martin would have turned 21 years old. The Trayvon Martin Foundation will receive a portion of the monies.

Tidal raised the funds at its Tidal X: 10/20 charity concert at Brooklyn, N.Y.’s Barclay Center. The live-streamed show featured Jay, Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Meek Mill, Usher, T.I. and Damian Marley, among others.

The October concert was billed as a fundraiser for the New World Foundation, which will distribute the funds.

The nonprofits that will share the bounty include national organizations such as Opportunity Agenda, and Sankofa.org, as well as local grassroots groups such as Hands Up United, in Ferguson, Mo.; Dream Defenders in Tallahassee, Fla.; the Black Youth Project 100 in Chicago; the Baltimore Justice Fund; the Ohio Students Association and Million Hoodies and the Justice League in New York City.

Donations will also be given to organizations created by the families of victims of police brutality, including the Trayvon Martin Foundation, the Michael O.D. Brown We Love Ours Sons and Daughters Foundation and the Oscar Grant Foundation.

Read more at Mic.

Ava DuVernay, Melissa Harris-Perry, Black Lives Matter & More to be Honored at Revolution Awards for Black History Month

2015-02-03-06-24-27.jpgHarlem-based cinema foundation ImageNation will honor the brightest entertainers and advocates who exude “Black Excellence” during the annual Revolution Awards, set to take place in New York next month.

The awards’ theme, eloquently titled Cocktails, Cinema & Revolutionwill honor famed director Ava DuVernay, MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-PerryBlack Lives Matter, and actor Hill Harper on Feb. 10.

ImageNation founder Moikgantsi Kgama shared her thoughts about how this year’s show will tie into Black History Month.

The Revolution Awards came to fruition in 2003, honoring the accomplishments of activists, actors, and artists who step outside the box to help improve Black and Latino communities. Past honorees and participants include Spike Lee, Congressman John Lewis, Erykah Badu, Lee DanielsTalib Kweli, and the late Ruby Dee.

“History is being made everyday. This event celebrates Black History Month by recognizing our most inspiring change agents while highlighting ImageNation’s newest monthly film program Cocktails & Cinema. I am looking forward to the Revolution Awards returning to an epic evening of honoring those who make a difference,” said Kgama.

In addition to the awards, the film 1982, starring Hill Harper, Sharon Leal, Wayne Brady, Troi Zee, La La Anthony and Ruby Dee, will be screened. The movie stars Harper as a father protecting his daughter from his wife’s battle with drug addiction.  Harper will also engage in a discussion of the film with director Tommy Oliver, image activist Michaela Angela Davis, and noted psychologist Dr. Jeff Gardere.

The event is open to the public. To find out how you can be part of the magic during Black History Month, get a ticket here and find out more about ImageNation’s 20-year legacy here.

article by Desire Thompson via newsone.com