July 8, 2016
July 8, 2016
Five cops were killed on Thursday night at a Black Lives Matter rally in Dallas, Texas by snipers who targeted officers in an “ambush-style” attack. Seven other cops were shot as were two civilians, according to the Associated Press. One suspect died in a standoff with police, and three other suspects are in police custody.
Like clockwork, some people immediately and unfairly laid blame on the Black Lives Matter movement Thursday night, suggesting that the organization is in some way responsible for the cop killings. That is not only dangerously misguided but also entirely untrue.
Friday morning during a press conference, Dallas Police Chief David Brown said:
The suspect said he was upset about Black Lives Matter. He said he was upset about the recent police shootings. He was upset at white people. He wanted to kill white people, especially white officers.
The suspect stated that we will eventually find the IEDs. The suspect stated he was not affiliated within groups and he stated that he did this alone. The suspect said other things that are part of this investigation so that we can make sure that everyone associated with this tragic event is brought to justice.
This statement will undoubtedly add fuel to the fire, and racist America will insist that the horrid actions of one shooter is reflective of an entire race, or in this case, a movement that aims to protect an entire race. But the only thing that this tragedy proves, once again, is that one angry person with easy access to guns can incite horror. Mass shootings in this country are overwhelmingly committed by white men, and yet, have you ever heard someone blame the entire white race for one white person’s crimes?
The sniper’s attacks were deliberate and his actions despicable, but they are in no way reflective of or represented by the Black Lives Matter movement. BLM sent a tweet on Thursday night that reinforced this message:
For full post click here.
Before 2014, many haven’t heard of the name of Tasha Cobbs outside of her hometown, but it all changed with one song.
Cobbs released an EP late in 2014 and it reached No. 1 on the Top Gospel Albums chart. The singles “Break Every Chain” and “For Your Glory” also reached No. 1 on the Hot Gospel Songs charts. At the 56th Annual Grammy Awards in 2014, Tasha Cobbs took home Best Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance, winning her first Grammy. Cobbs was awarded the Gospel Artist of the Year, at the 2015 GMA Dove Awards.
With all this success, you’d think she had it made. But it was there was a deep, dark depression behind that scenes that almost silenced Cobbs forever.
“Under the covers I would tell myself things like, ‘Nobody wants you, they only want you for your gifts; they only want you for your talents. People only want you for what you have to offer but nobody is giving back to you,’” confessed Cobbs. “Of course it was all untrue. I had so many people around me who loved me, but for some reason I was stuck in this place of rejection where no matter how good I am or how much I do, or how much I offer, it felt like it wasn’t enough. I would cry for hours. Sometimes I wouldn’t even know why I was crying. It was just a heaviness that comes over you that you just cannot explain.”
“During that time, something in my spirit said, ‘Tasha, you have to do something about this.’ It was just a moment where I felt like I couldn’t move forward in my career and in my ministry if I kept allowing myself to be in this place. I thought, ‘At some point somebody is going to find out and it’s going to get much bigger than what I’m able to handle.’ So I got up to do some research and I started studying depression. I called my cousin Shaniqua, and my pastor, to tell them I thought I knew what was wrong with me. I immediately found a therapist so that I could begin talking about what was happening with me.
My therapist diagnosed it as depression. I know what you’re thinking: Tasha Cobbs, Grammy-winning gospel singer, depression? Yes, depression.”
“Going to therapy was new for me,” admits Cobbs. “I didn’t know anyone who went to therapy – or so I thought. We don’t talk about mental health enough in our churches or our culture. I remember being weary of even doing it. When I started going to therapy I only told my closest friends and family. They were all very supportive. They would call and say, ‘Did you go to your appointment today? What happened? Did you have a breakthrough?’ But I know some people don’t have…
Cree Summer, the real life actress behind the quirky, throwing-up-peace-signs, fun-loving character “Freddie” on the long running sitcome, A Different World, has been working steadily since the show ended in 1993. She was only 23 then and quickly capitalized on her quirky voice to launch a career voicing animated cartoon series. In her illustrious voice over career, she’s even gotten to work as the voice of the green M&M in commercials.
She got her start into voice acting at the age of 11 as the voice of Penny on the popular show Inspector Gadget, and continued to do cartoon voiceovers even during her run on the show A Different World. As a matter of fact, she brought the voices of Elmyra from Tiny Toons and Susie Carmicheal from Rugrats to life during the last few years A Different World was on the air. In her early career, she was a part of such cartoon classics such as The Real Ghostbusters, The Care Bears Movie, Strawberry Shortcake, and The Ewok Adventures.
Now 45, Summer is all grown up and happily married with two kids.
One reason why she loves voice acting is because she is free to be anything she wants, a black girl, a white girl, even an inanimate object. She felt that as a black actress the best she could ever hope for would be to play a white woman’s black best friend.
Her success has largely come from voice acting, but her real passion is music.
She became good friends with Lisa Bonet and her ex-husband musician Lenny Kravitz. In 1999, Cree released her own solo album entitled, “Street Faerie,” which was produced by Lenny Kravitz. She even toured with Kravitz, opening for his shows. Unfortunately, she was dropped by her record label shortly after going on the road.
Besides her voice, one thing about Summer that people identify her with is her hair.
“Believe it or not, on ‘A Different World’, I was very unhappy with my hair,” admits Summer. “People don’t know that. That was not a happy hair time for me but I’m happy that people were inspired by it though. Debbie Allen had taken my hair and dyed it red and they used to curl it with a curling iron, and it wasn’t until I left ‘A Different World’ at 23, that I learned how to do my hair and fell in love with it.”
It’s always been curly and when I started making records and touring with my music, I started loving my hair. It really became an identity… something for me to hide behind when I was insecure, and
… to show off when I felt confident. But now I’m in a different stage, I’m in my 40’s, I’m a mother and it’s in a bun. I call it the Mom Bun.
Cree continues to do voiceovers for cartoons, commercials and a number of popular video games.
Even with the diverse amount of roles she’s played, Summer still has things she would like to see and accomplish in the business. “One character I’d like to voice that I haven’t played yet is a fairy, and I’d really love to do that. As far as African-American roles, we’ve come a long way, but I’d still like to see more diverse roles for African Americans and other ethnicities being created in the cartoon world.”
Tupelo, MS — The Minority Youth Matters Movement, a civil rights organization initially founded to bring awareness to, and abolish, the historically pervasive systematic discrimination of NASCAR and their sponsors towards African Americans, has expanded their purpose, in recent weeks, to empower communities seeking fairness, tolerance and justice with regards to excessive police brutality, unjust incarceration, bigotry, racism, discrimination and gun violence.
After what was classified a routine traffic stop by a Tupelo, Mississippi police officer and K9 unit, within five minutes of the traffic stop, an unarmed African American male was shot dead four times, and nearly an hour after the shooting an
ambulance arrived on the scene.
With family members and community leaders outraged at the lack of details provided regarding the deadly incident, city officials would only clarify that the traffic stop and use of deadly force were justified.
“Given the circumstances for organizing the march on the steps of Tupelo City Hall, I knew I had to get a Civil Rights organization that is steadfast in their resolve to get things accomplished, who were very organized, and who were not afraid to take on the fight for justice,” said Ellis Westbrook, Officer In Charge of Tupelo, Mississippi, for Minority Youth Matters Movement.
“When I first contacted Mr. [Terrance] Cox, I was concerned he, and the Minority Youth Matters Movement, would not be available to assist our planned July 30th march, because I was aware of their scheduled September 18th Civil Rights protest against NASCAR in Chicago,” continued Westbrook.
“I knew it might be a long shot to secure their services, but when I explained the severity, and the necessity, for our march and the impact the Minority Youth Matters Movement would have on this community to advance fairness and justice, Mr. Cox immediately came on board,” noted Westbrook.
The scheduled Minority Youth Matters Movement’s Civil Rights protest in Chicago will be held at Chicagoland Speedway, which is owned by the parent company of NASCAR, the International Speedway Corporation, during the Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 on September 18th.
The Chicago protest is a continuation of a year long embroiled dispute between Terrance Alton Cox III, founder of the Minority Youth Matters Movement, and the racing sanctioning body NASCAR and several of their top tier sponsors with regards to systematic discrimination such as Coca-Cola, M&M Mars, Viacom/Nickelodeon, Sprint, Comcast/NBC, Camping World, FORD, General Motors and Toyota.
“When I first received the call from Mr. [Ellis] Westbrook informing me of the terrible circumstance that had transpired in Tupelo, obviously I was disheartened to hear of the tragic news, but clearly pleased he recognized the Minority Youth Matters Movement as an influencing Civil Rights organization effectively capable of assisting positive outcomes within the community of Tupelo,” said Cox.
“Mr. Westbrook told me that he wanted to use this unfortunate tragedy, that has personally affected him, to act as a catalyst to strengthen the community of Tupelo.” continued Cox. “Being a Southerner myself, it is evident that systematic discrimination anywhere, permeates systematic discrimination everywhere – and I feel a responsibility to come and strengthen this community, and other communities around the Nation, from a state who undoubtedly will bring divisiveness next April when Mississippi celebrates Confederate History Month,” exclaimed Cox.
“Unfortunately, the narrative remains the same, and Tupelo’s civic injustices are no different than many communities across this nation,” Westbrook said. “However, me and my family have chosen to take this tragedy and turn it into a positive for this community,” continued Westbrook. “And I am personally excited to be a part of this historic Civil Rights March on the steps of Tupelo City Hall, and we are grateful for the Minority Youth Matters Movement and Mr. Cox to come and lead our cause.”
It has been a difficult and emotional week. My heart is saddened at the tragic and unnecessary loss of life. Alton Sterling and Philando Castille should still be alive. I continue to pray and wrestle with God about these and other senseless killings.
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
However, it is the flesh and blood that is killing Black men and boys. How do we effect change and combat the powers at hand? God I know you have established the governing authorities.(Romans 13:1) You are sovereign and your will is perfect. It still hurts, we are hurting! Please help us to understand and trust your plan.
It hasn’t been an easy week. In Louisiana, police fatally shot a black man Tuesday who was not holding a weapon. A day later, cops shot another black man, this time in Minnesota, after he apparently reached for his identification.
Police have an incredibly difficult job. It’s still no excuse to execute human beings who have not put officers’ lives in danger.
As a gentle reminder to law enforcement, here are some examples of how de-escalation tactics in potentially dangerous situations can save lives.
For full post and examples click here.
Today, integrating online solutions and business apps is the most efficient way to manage your business. There are lots of tools and resources at your fingertips available for tablets, smartphones, and other mobile devices that are designed to help you successfully plan, launch, and run a business, and many are free or fairly inexpensive. Not only do such solutions cut cost and save time, they can increase productivity and growth. In fact, there are over 100 billion apps in the marketplace.
Are you are looking for a way to integrate online solutions into your business, or are you frustrated with searching online for that perfect solution?
Melissa Ambers, who is president and chief administrative officer of Houston-based company Paperless Expert, has compiled a list of what she sees as the best business apps. Ambers is a paperless expert and project manager, with over fifteen years of experience. She and her team offer tools and expert advice to help small business owners produce top quality work.
Set up this tool on all devices to ensure efficiency. You can create multiple calendars in this one account and make appointments with yourself as well as with your clients. Use this to increase productivity and time management.
(Cost: Free – $29+)
Working on multiple projects, but need to meet with your team to discuss progress? This project management tool enables you to easily collaborate with team members and clients, which means no more unnecessary meetings.
Can’t find the notes from a meeting? Evernote is your solution managing notes, ideas, Web clippings, pictures, and so much more. Download this app on all devices and login to one account. Conveniently find notes without the frustrations of looking for a pen and a sheet of paper.
(Cost: Free and up)
Overwhelmed with creating e-mail templates? With this simple solution, you can create newsletters with various templates that are pre-built.
(Cost $39 and up)
Are you using multiple files to maintain customer information? Well, Insightly is a one-stop shop. This online solution is capable of managing your client contact list and leads. It can also connect contacts to the same company, manage emails, and so much more. These are solutions to get your time back.
The new cast of the Broadway smash “Hamilton” has been announced, and — yes — the actors are as young, scrappy, and hungry as you’d expect.
Here’s what we know:
Tony Award nominee Brandon Victor Dixon will take on the role of Aaron Burr beginning sometime in August, replacing the beloved Leslie Odom, Jr. Lexi Lawson will step into the shoes of Eliza Schuyler on July 11, taking over for the “Amelie”-bound Philippa Soo. And on that same day, Javier Muñoz will become Alexander Hamilton (Michael Luwoye will be his alternate) as star and creator Lin-Manuel Miranda departs.
For full post click here.
Police shot and killed a man Wednesday in the St. Paul suburb of Falcon Heights, Minnesota, and his girlfriend recorded the aftermath in a graphic video shot using the Facebook Live feature.
The video shows the man bleeding from gunshot wounds as his girlfriend films from the driver’s seat. The police officer “shot him three times because we had a busted tail light,” the woman filming can be heard saying.
Officials have not officially released the victim’s name, but his family identified him as Philando Castile, local news station WCCO reported. He was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis and relatives told The Star-Tribune he died at the hospital.
Castile’s mother Valerie told CNN that she rushed to the scene of the shooting and asked to see her son.
“I didn’t want to talk to anyone,” she said. “I just just wanted to know where my son was because I didn’t want him to die alone.”
But authorities told Castile that her son had already been taken to the hospital, and by the time she got there, he was already dead. She said she still hasn’t been able to identify his body.
“They killed my son,” she told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “They took a good man, a hard-working man.”
For full post click here.