It’s no secret that the political climate over the last few years has brought a disturbing amount of division to American society. Whichever side of the aisle you stand on — or if you hate political aisles altogether — at the end of the day, we’re all human beings living with one another. Nothing magnifies that fact more than social media.
With social media, we take everyone everywhere with us. Friends, family, strangers, the best and the worst are all right there, a few keystrokes away. This doesn’t bring out the best in humanity. Or, we hear about the good far less than we are given forensic social studies of the bad.
If you don’t already know about her, meet Howard University senior, Latroya Pina. She’s getting ready to compete in the 2020 Summer Olympic Games on the first-ever Cape Verde National Swim Team in Tokyo, Japan.
However, Latroya is not the only Pina competing in the Olympics. Her siblings, Troy and Jayla, will also join her on the inaugural swim team and make history as a family.
According to Plunkett Research, the average American woman wears a size 14 or above. But for a long time, that plus-sized customer has been largely ignored by the majority of the biggest retailers in the nation. But it looks as if a shift is starting to happen, thanks to some independent brands that continue to prove just how powerful the plus-sized market can be. Continue reading →
Too many people have fairly basic aspirations. It’s refreshing to see people doing awesome things that you’d never expect from most other humans out there. Check this guy out.
Meet Kyle Messier. He’s a 31-year-old bicycle mechanic from Waterloo, Ontario. He’s, shall we say, a cycling enthusiast. He entered the Big Red Gravel Run, a 100-kilometer off-road race near Harrington, Quebec. New to racing, but no stranger to distance riding, he prepared himself. Instead of packing up the car and heading to the race, Messier hopped on his bike and pedaled 650 kilometers to Harrington over three and a half days. Continue reading →
*One of the most damaging accusations leveled against Black men has been their lack of involvement in their kids’ lives. Thanks to no small contribution from the news media, popular opinion considers Black men to flee responsibility and be up to no good.
This has happened for so long that the phrase “deadbeat dad” now conjures up the image of a Black man in America. The truth couldn’t be any farther away from this.
Before busting the myth of the absent Black father, we must understand why this myth exists. The reason is as simple as scapegoating.
Why are Black youths involved in crime? Why is there mass incarceration of Black men? Why are Black people selling drugs? Why can’t Black people move up economically? Seeking the real answers to this question would mean studying structural racism in our country but repeatedly saying “absent fathers” serves as a good deflection.
*A mention of America’s literary giants would be incomplete with the mention of one Miss Toni Morrison. This daughter of a steel worker and a homemaker has rightfully earned her laurels for creating works centered on African American life when its erasure from culture was commonplace.
Her poetic and bittersweet writing has earned her a Nobel Prize for Literature, a Pulitzer Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Truly, she is our Black intellectual.
To understand Toni Morrison’s significance, one needs to understand her work’s specialness. Her writing not only captures the pain and anguish of the countless nameless souls that were snatched away from their home and treated with cruelty but also shows their complexity, their unique link to their heritage and most importantly their humanity.
Through her books, Toni Morrison reinforces black people’s place in America history and society.
In the foreword of her book Beloved, Morrison wrote “I wanted the reader to be kidnapped, thrown ruthlessly into an alien environment as the first step into a shared experience with the book’s population.”
Morrison understands that the role of her writing isn’t just confrontational. It serves a higher purpose. It reconstructs dark chapters of America’s past so that roads leading into empathy and light can be built.
*Donovan Steele and his mother, Casey, were once homeless. After his mom, a Navy veteran, came home, she was diagnosed with PTSD and working a minimum wage job coupled with a small amount of child support just wasn’t enough to keep a roof over their head.
Casey ended up having to sell everything she owned, her car, a small amount of jewelry, until she had nothing left. She explains on the show, Returning the Favor, that one of her worst and most hopeless moments was when there was no hot water for her son Donovan to shower. He was shivering in the cold and this brought her to tears.
She told him that if he didn’t keep himself clean, someone would know something was wrong and call Child Protective Services; and they would come and take him away from her.
But some people, no matter what age they are, are not going to be defeated.
*I swear, you’ve got to bow down to anyone with this much heart and compassion. And we’re not talking about some little old lady, retired and lonely with nothing else to do. No, granny Gloria Lewis, 54, still works as a waitress; but instead of spending her off time and weekends doing yoga, and hanging out with cats, she hunkers down and gets to work making 225 fresh dinners and 180 breakfasts on a two-stove, four-fridge kitchen.
Lewis lived on the brink of homelessness in her low-income job and moved to the US from Barbados in 1987. Each weekend, she and her husband, who works as a mechanic, spend $700 on groceries to make meals that include chicken Parmesan, spaghetti and meatballs, barbecue chicken and ribs, along with fresh veggies and rice to help those on the street. dozens of home-cooked meals for those in need. Continue reading →