Weekly News Round-Up: Aug 15th- August 21st, 2011

Aug 15th- 21st


Northwestern principal maintains high achievement standards
Shawn Cetrone, Herald Online, 8/14/11


It’s ‘Blackademic: young and black in academia
Chetachi A. Egwu, The Grio, 8/14/11


These four also have a dream
Janel Davis , The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, AJC


A tepid response to race-based school bullying
Milton W. Hinton Jr. , New Jersey News, 8/14/11


A good change at Shaw?
Barry Saunders, News Observer, 8/14/11


How to Stop Flash Mobs
Zack Isaacs, Huffington Post, 8/15/11


Teen Arrested In Wisc. Flash Mob Attack; City Blames Black Families
Johan Thomas, News One, 8/15/11


Mentoring brings satisfaction
Staff Writer, Vindy News, 8/15/11


Philly Mayor Michael Nutter Joins Bill Cosby in Bashing Black Teens and Parents
Jorge Rivas, Colorlines, 8/16/11


A shared responsibility
JS Online, Earl Bracy, 8/16/11


THE WEEKND Continues To Astound With New Mixtape "THURSDAY"

Our prayers were answered yesterday, people.

Last night, Toronto-based R&B mystery man The Weeknd unleashed his brand new mixtape Thursday.  You can follow the link below to snag the free download.

Things have changed drastically for The Weeknd (real name Abel Tesfaye) since the release of his first tape House Of Balloons earlier this year. For one thing, there was absolutely no pressure. But since then, House of Balloons has been the most positively-reviewed album of the year thus far. Tesfaye now releases his follow-up to an audience hungry for another dose of a dark, haunted and debauched majesty that we now come to expect (i.e. demand) from The Weeknd.

And our hero does not disappoint.

The Internet Popularity of The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl


I have written previously on how much I love the web series, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl. The show is original and features a young black woman who navigates her way through seen and unseen awkward situations on her job and in her relationships. Well, I am happy to report that the show is so popular that in a matter of a month, the creator, Issa Rae, and her cast mates where able to raise $44,000 dollars to continue the web series for another 5 weeks with a grand finale.

To read more about her inspirational fundraising story, please read below.

Eating TV Dinners During Racial Zoo-Keeping

On top of America’s legacy of racism there’s nothing more upsetting than the absence of guilt, from the racists of course. Not even the first sentence describes the severity of our situation, especially when there are tv shows, Bait Car for instance, that broadcast the hatred of Black youth. Every time I’ve watched Bait Car, a reality series that shadows police in their bait care operations, I’ve witnessed the perversion of innocence through successful set-ups. The living room screen reveals to us a sorry moment: this is a point in time in which we see injustices against us and we won’t even scratch a finger across our foreheads, at least that’s a “startin’ sumthin’” gesture.

The Help

This weekend, I saw the much criticized/acclaimed movie The Help. I had planned to keep this a secret, to never tell a soul, and pretend this never happened. But, I wanted to have an opinion about the movie so I bought a ticket to The Smurfs and saw The Help instead (I wanted to see it, but not support it). I refrained from reading any reviews, or any synopses of the book or the film. I wanted to go in with an open mind, and an open heart. But I couldn’t.

Something just wasn’t right. From the moment I first saw the preview, to the moment I walked past the movie poster on my way into the theater. I knew that something wasn’t right. I have slowly begun to build defenses against the biased, narrow and sometimes problematic ways Black women are portrayed in the media but I wasn’t ready for this.

A Political Soundtrack


“Musicians Don’t’ Die, They Decompose.”

The power of music is a secret to no one. You can find the manifestations of this power everywhere. Just observe the impulse you get when you hear a strong base in the background of a new track, or the tired feeling you get when listening to something slow and melodic, or the passion felt through an A’Capella group. There is no doubting the roots of music and the ability it has to impact your mood/emotions.

What is even more fascinating is seeing the power of music extended and connected to political movements. In South Africa music is the backbone of social mobilization. And it is a powerful backbone; one that brings people together, gives hope, inspires, and creates an artistic expression that simply cannot be articulated outside of a musical context.

"Please Describe Your Background"

When I’m asked “What are you?” a question which my slight racial ambiguity warrants on almost a daily basis, I say black. So I check black on my college app. Then sometimes (most times actually), the question is followed by “Yeah, but what else?” and sometimes “She’s Cuban!” “She’s Puerto Rican.” “She’s Italian.” from eavesdroppers. No, I’m actually not. Thanks, but I have my racial identity figured out.. I don’t really like to be the object of twenty questions.

When pressed, and not offended, I’ll explain that yes, my father is a white, non religious Jew. This often leads to further confusion about the Jewish people as an ethnic group. “Did you have a Bat Mitvzah?” No. “Then you’re not Jewish.” Right, I’m black. “Okay, you’re mixed.” I’m black. “Whatever.”

Secession aint gonna end the recession

The old saying goes, “Don’t mess with Texas”. Believe me, I haven’t really messed with Texas since the 1995 Dallas Cowboys team. Although my heart is as big as the state itself, it’s tough for me to stomach the thought of Rick Perry becoming President of the United States. Maybe I’ll try to overlook the fact that Perry refuses to admit that global warming is real. Perhaps, I’ll even not pay attention to the fact that he invited xenophobic musician,  Ted Nugent, to perform at his 2nd inauguration. What I can’t overlook is the fact that same man that wanted to secede from the union now wants represent the entire union.