Tag: East Bay

#BBQBecky Called the Cops on Kenzie Smith and Now He’s Running for Oakland City Council

Oakland City Council hopeful Kenzie Smith (photo via Facebook)

by  via motherjones.com

Kenzie Smith, one of two men who had police called on him by the woman the internet dubbed #BBQBecky, is running for a City Council seat in Oakland, California.

Back in April, as you may recall, “Becky”—since identified as Jennifer Schultecalled the police to report that two African American men were barbecuing with a charcoal grill in a lakeside area designated for gas grilling only.

The #BBQBecky affair—which went viral thanks to a video posted by Smith’s wife—was part of a recent string of “doing X while black” incidents that lit up the internet. The Oakland encounter prompted memes and local protests, as well as #BBQingWhileBlack events—organized, in part, by Smith—in the very spot where Schulte sought to shoo the men away.

Not long after Smith’s run-in with Schulte, an Oakland council member nominated him to a position on Oakland’s Park and Recreation Advisory Committee. Smith, 37, now says he has also filed the paperwork to vie for council in District 2, where he’ll face an uphill battle against incumbent Abel Guillen and local housing activist Nikki Bas Fortunato.

But Smith, the brother of Bay Area rap legend Mistah F.A.B., has strong local connections. He and his wife, Michelle Snider, are the co-founders and co-owners of Dope Era Magazine, a local music and culture magazine. Through Dope Era and his work with other community groups, Smith, a lifelong East Bay resident, has helped organize a range of initiatives, including resource drives for the homeless, backpack drives for Oakland schoolkids, hygiene kit drives, and STI testing events. He recently helped raise more than $14,000 for a local homeless man targeted in another viral incident—a video showed a jogger throwing the man’s belongings into the trash and the lake. (Smith told Mother Jones he is now trying to help the man find an apartment.) He and his friend from the barbecue encounter, Smith says, also hope to launch a nonprofit that will focus on youth job and leadership training.

Since announcing his council ambitions in June, Smith has officially declared his candidacy, begun collecting the signatures he needs to accept campaign donations, and started building a campaign staff. His platform, he told Mother Jones, will focus on homelessness and renters’ rights—key Bay Area issues—as well as education and jobs for youth.

Smith campaigned publicly for the first time on Sunday at the most recent #BBQingWhileBlack event in Oakland, where he shook hands and mingled with residents in a T-shirt that read, “Kenzie Smith: City Council for District 2.”

Read more: https://www.motherjones.com/politics/2018/07/bbqbecky-called-cops-on-kenzie-smith-now-running-for-oakland-city-council/ 

Ryan Coogler, Destin Cretton, Chinaka Hodge and Charles King’s Macro Team Up for ‘Minors’ TV Series

Ryan Coogler Destin Daniel Charles D
(L to R) Ryan Cooler, Destin Daniel Cretton, Charles King, Chinaka Hodge (photo via Variety.com)

article by Laura Prudom via Variety.com

“Creed” director Ryan Coogler, “Short Term 12” helmer Destin Daniel Cretton and production company Macro (founded by Charles King) are teaming to develop a new TV series, “Minors,” Variety has learned.

Created by Coogler, Cretton and writer Chinaka Hodge, “Minors” will tackle institutionalization in a unique and fresh way by exploring juvenile facilities and the kids that grow up in the system. The drama will be specifically structured to show how the facilities shape the kids over a one-year time period. The project is based on Cretton’s experience working in residential foster care, Coogler’s East Bay area upbringing and time working in a juvenile detention facility, and Hodge’s experience teaching underserved youth in Bay Area continuation schools and her 15 years of working with local youth.

The series will be exec produced by Coogler, Cretton, Hodge, King, Macro’s president of production Kim Roth, and Macro’s SVP of production Poppy Hanks. “Short Term 12” producer Asher Goldstein will serve as co-executive producer. Coogler and Cretton will direct the series, with Hodge penning the scripts. It remains to be seen where the project will land, but given the auspices, the show is likely to attract interest from both traditional and streaming networks.

Following the success of “Creed,” which scored Sylvester Stallone an Oscar nomination for best supporting actor, Coogler will next direct Marvel’s “Black Panther.”  Hodge previously served as an associate producer of HBO’s “Brave New Voices,” and appeared in the premium cabler’s “Poetry.” She is a founding member of Blackout for Human Rights.

To read more, go to: http://variety.com/2016/tv/news/minors-series-ryan-coogler-destin-cretton-charles-king-1201714996/