Category Archives: What’s Up

BeBe Winans Shapes Own Narrative with Born For This

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*Historically, African American men haven’t had a chance to control their own narratives. A story like music legend BeBe Winans’, which has taken him from a working-class home in Detroit to the top of the world’s music charts, could have easily wound up as a subpar cable movie.

In typical fashion, the six-time Grammy-winning songwriter and artist decided to pen his life story himself, and the result is the breathtaking Born For This: The BeBe Winans Story, co-written and directed by Charles Randolph-Wright. The show is playing at the Arena Stage in Washington DC through August 28.

Any presentation of Winans’ life would be incomplete without music, as he’s one of nine siblings in a gospel music dynasty that has influenced generations of musicians. But Born For This is much more than a musical: it’s a riveting account of a man who decided early on to take the proverbial high road.

“I’ve always understood that with everything I faced — including racism and bigotry — there is a choice,” Winans reflected by phone. “I chose laughter instead of anger. I chose love instead of hate. I chose to understand instead of misunderstand.”

“People who have come to see Born For This have left with inspiration to reach for those dreams again,” Winans continued. “They’ve told me that the show reminded them that they have a purpose, that it’s not over, no matter what age or what’s happened in life.” Continue reading

Where Are All of the Pokemon Negroes?

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*At one point, I really thought I was the last person on earth who hadn’t heard of Pokemon Go, the allegedly interactive mobile game that’s being played on literally millions of mobile devices as I type. Even with reports of players falling off of cliffs, being robbed, and even killed, it’s caught on like wildfire — kinda this summer’s Candy Crush (a fad I also missed).

About a week after Pokemon Go’s launch, I counted over two dozen people staggering along the river adjacent to my neighborhood, staring at the small screens in each of their hands.

During the same walk, I saw a guy on his hands and knees reaching desperately into a curbside sewer grate. He’d accidentally dropped his iPhone into it while playing Pokemon Go.

At another point during that evening’s junket, another dog walker warned me to be careful, as a group just down the path had spotted a rattlesnake in the adjacent brush. As I cautiously approached the gathering crowd, I wondered why they were all staring at their phones in the midst of a poisonous serpent. Were they trying to get a good picture of the snake?

No. It turned out they had spotted a rattata, one of the much-sought-after characters in Pokemon Go.  The guy who’d warned me had thought they said “rattler.” Continue reading

WTF…13-Year-Old Shoots Elderly Couple in Beauty Supply Store? (Video)

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*Now this should just piss you off.

According to a report by the St. Louis Dispatch, two teen girls were suspected of shoplifting at a beauty supply store in Missouri. The business is owned by a Korean family, and when the girls were confronted, one was taken in after a previous juvenile warrant was discovered, but the other — a 13-year-old — was let go with a formal warning and the approval of the store owners.

But “Miss Thang” apparently didn’t appreciate this, and decided to return to the store hours later, WITH A GUN, and proceeded to SHOOT the couple.

You know how we do: Right is right and wrong is wrong! Family members marched her a** right up to the police station and had her turn herself in! Continue reading

Study Says Black Folk More ‘Easily Offended’ By What People Say

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*Now THIS should spark some interesting dialogue. A recent PEW Research Center study shows Black folks overall think people should be more careful with the language they use, so to not offend people. 59%) of the general population (all races) say ‘too many people are easily offended these days over the language that others use,’  according to Hannah Fingerhut on behalf of PEW.

“Fewer (39%) think ‘people need to be more careful about the language they use to avoid offending people with different backgrounds.’

But in the race breakdown, Fingerhut writes…

“Among blacks, 67% say people should be more careful with language to avoid offending people of different backgrounds, while just 30% say too many people are easily offended by language these days.

Just so you know. I’m with the 30%. Continue reading

Family of Boy Killed by Gator at Disney Won’t Sue…Here’s Why

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*Everyone was heart broken when we learned that 2-year-old Lane Graves had been snatched from his playpen at a Disney World area lagoon by an alligator, and found dead on the ocean’s bed a few days later. Now, in wondering how the family is coming along, we learn that though their pain is still very strong, they will not be pursuing legal action against Disney World.

A statement released by Matt and Melissa Graves on Wednesday states, “Melissa and I are broken. We will solely be focused on the future health of our family and will not be pursuing a lawsuit against Disney.

The heartbroken parents continue…

“We will forever struggle to comprehend why this happened to our sweet baby, Lane. As each day passes, the pain gets worse, but we truly appreciate the outpouring of sympathy and warm sentiments we have received from around the world.” Continue reading

Wow! That’s a Lot of Babies: Twins Times Three! (Watch)

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*I suppose one way to wrap your brain around the realization that you have produced three sets of twins in a little over two years and your future for the next 18 will be centered around taking care of ‘dem babies is being grateful that you can produce children at all.

After all, as Danesha Couch, a 20-year-old mother of five, knows so well, there are many women who cannot. She smiles as she talks to the media, and shares how people respond when she tells them about her large family.

“People just consider me a freak of nature when I tell them,” Couch said.

Unless you actually come from a family with a history of multiple births, its safe to assume that most women who plan for children never think of having more than one baby at a time. But when Couch had her first set of twins, and then had a repeat with the second, the question that probably comes to the mind of many is, why even take the risk a third time?

According to one report, the chances of having THREE sets of twins is something like 1 in 88,000.

But…I don’t think Danesha ever got this memo. Continue reading

What…Mortality Rate for Black Babies Outweighs All Others?

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*I recall one of my greatest fears during pregnancy was something happening to my baby. While I was a generally happy pregnant woman, all the talk about children dying in their sleep — Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) — or children born with low birth weight not making it to their first year scared the crap out of me. This was especially harsh since I was a low birth-weight child, born to an alcoholic mother.

I remember once I gave birth, for months thereafter, waking up every 30-minutes to turn my baby from her back to her stomach and vice-versa; or placing my finger under her little nose to make sure she was still breathing.

It was maddening, and not unlike many new mothers, I got very little sleep for the first 6-months of her life!

So when I read a report in the Sacramento Bee that claims children in impoverished areas of the county are dying — and Black children more than any other race or ethnicity even more so, it was very disconcerting. Especially in this day and age when so many medical strides have been made.

Why is this STILL happening?

First, a bit of background.

The Sacramento Bee reports that between 2010 and 2015, nearly one quarter of the 873 children 18 and under who died in Sacramento County were Black. And at that time Black children only made up 11 percent of the population represented in that age category. Continue reading

Another ‘Racist Rant’ Gets White Employee Fired!

 

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*Apparently this fool didn’t hear about the Bank of America employee who was fired after she posted her racist rant on Facebook. I swear, this is even further proof that racist people are simply not that smart. OK, I’ll say it: They’re downright dumb. And ignorant. Take Diane Amoratis, an employee…er, former employee, at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Center City, Philadelphia, who NBC reports wrote  that she was “sick and tired of all this bull—- with the black people,” on Facebook.

Hey, people have a right to their opinion. Hell, we all have them, but that does not mean you have to put them on blast. And this fool didn’t stop there. Her hate even intercepted a compliment she was giving the police officers stationed at the protests. Truly, it was as if once she opened her mouth to spew her hate, a bad case of diarrhea set in and she just couldn’t stop. Continue reading