‘When They See Us,” has been the topic of nearly everyone’s conversation over the course of the last two weeks. The Netflix miniseries directed by Ava Duvernay touched on so many important subtopics, it’ll make your head spin. I know that not everyone has had the chance to see it, and some have even chosen not to because of how difficult it is to process the emotions that will be triggered. The story is about five teenage African American and Hispanic boys who were sent to prison after being wrongfully accused and ultimately convicted for a rape and sexual assault of a white woman that they did not commit. As a journalist, one thing that was troubling to watch was the media’s biased coverage of the events. While that part of the series was just a mere subplot, I couldn’t help but think how unfortunate it was that there was really no fair representation of those young men in the media. That probably wouldn’t have been the case had the North Star been around to speak truth to power. Giving the young men a fair representation in the media, rather than prematurely concluding that they were guilty.
What defines beauty, and how does the nature of beauty change over time? What is the special allure of the stereotypical runway model in today’s society? These age old questions will never truly be measured or answered; however, when viewers witness the model image that we all adore, we witness a beauty that for the most part can not be described.
“We just understand there are not a lot of opportunities in this community for jobs and there are not a lot of opportunities for young children and teenagers to see people that look like them succeeding in business. We wanted to bring that here,” Derrick Moore said to USA Today in his 2017 interview. Moore along with fellow Tennessee State University graduates, Clinton Gray and Emanuel Reed, launched their own Pizza Beeria in Nashville that same year. The restaurant was a huge hit locally, and took off to a point where they’ve already expanded before their second anniversary. The trio had a solid business plan, a knack for a good marketing strategy, and understood the importance of inclusion every step of the way.
Halima Aden is not afraid to be the first. Paving roads for Muslim models since her introduction in the 2016 Miss Minnesota USA pageant as the first contestant to wear a hijab and burkini, she now graces the cover of the 2019 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue. The cover features Tyra Banks, the first African-American model to ever be featured on the cover of a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue.
Children are not only the future, they’re an intricate part of the present. Making history in different industries, and pioneering new opportunities for their peers and the next generation of children as well. There’s 14-year-old actress, Marsai Martin, executive producing her latest film “Little.” Also the 4-year-old child prodigy of drumming, Justin “LJ” Wilson, who got America’s attention on the Ellen Degeneres Show earlier this year.
“When I started my first business,” entrepreneur Cher’Don Reynolds explains, “I simply wanted to put messages of empowerment and celebration on shirts. I wanted customers to have the option of glitter, rhinestones and different colors.” But it didn’t take her long to find out that what she wanted didn’t quite fit her start-up budget.
In the culinary world, only a handful of regional cuisine reaches international level. “Southern food,” is considered a delicious, heart-warming, feel-good cuisine that affects all those who try it. According to John T. Edge, the director of Southern Foodways Alliance, the Southern food people refer to is based on food developed by women, who are often black, originating from dishes generated during slavery in the South of the United States.
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Imagine being a part of a mission to assist inner city youth in expanding their horizons. Not just by taking them on a few field trips, but you show them how to “fish,” by educating them about the aviation industry, a skill that isn’t a part of your average public or private school curriculum.
Wikipedia Edit-a-thons are hosted by schools, archives, museums, and cultural institutions all over the world. The idea is to help increase the voices of LGBTQ, female, people of color, or other marginalized persons as Wiki editors. On March 30th, I attended the Art+Feminism edit-a-thon at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta where people of all backgrounds were invited to learn how to become a Wiki editor, learn the rules of Wikipedia, and create articles about female, non-binary, women of color, etc. artists.