If you’re on social media (who isn’t?) chances are your timeline has been jumping a little bit more than usual. There’s always something going down so here’s our Rundown of the top stories.
Brock Turner was found guilty for the intent to commit rape and sexual assault of an unconscious woman. His guilty verdict isn’t the news; the fact that he was sentenced to only serve six months is the story. Judge Aaron Persky said a prison sentence would have a “severe impact” on Turner and instead lessened the sentence, of which Turner will likely only serve three months. This is honestly the biggest and most blatant display of white privilege, pervasive rape culture and class to be seen in a while. Every part of this case has been tailored to show rapist Brock Turner in a friendly light, from the media’s failure to show his mug shot, instead blasting the world with images of smiled suited-up Turner, to his father’s plea that twenty minutes of action shouldn’t impact the rest of his life. The message is clear when the rapist is white, male and a good swimmer it’s not rape. If you haven’t yet, read the victims powerful letter to her attacker. It will leave you in awe of her bravery and flabbergasted at Turner’s lack of remorse. Oh yeah, tell me again why we need laws to regulate bathrooms from transgenders while the laws we have don’t punish convicted rapists. Don’t worry, I’ll wait.
Face NOT Beat to the Gawds
Alicia Keys has announced she will no longer wear makeup- not even for photo shoots and videos. This is an awesome stance that I fully support. Women should have the freedom to express ourselves however we want and feel comfortable- makeup or not. However one would be amiss to forget to analyze the backlash women like Keke Palmer and Viola Davis face when doing the same thing. There are no singing of praises, instead critique. They do not have Eurocentric features or fair skin or curly hair. Let’s not forget the wig removal heard round the world. Colorism and baby hair’s are still rampant issues in the black community. No makeup? No problem-if you’re light skin with good hair.
Your Name is Your Shield
Keeping in the tune of what’s turning out to be the Blackest Year Ever (see Black Panther, #BHM, Underground, Birth of Nation, etc…) the Roots remake showed on the History channel. Haley’s infamous story was retold with some famous names and new faces, a bit more historical accuracy and allowed a new generation to know the story. I know, I know you are tired of slave films. But if we don’t tell our stories they might be erased. Roots is definitely worth seeing. Like other slave narratives it begs us to ask questions such as, who are we and where do we come from? More so it reminds us not to forget our history, and the “shame is not ours.” Missed it? No biggie, check it out online and get your life.
Yep, do it for the Culture
Black creatives are still out here working; especially, some of our YouTube favorites are out here killing it. Issa Rae’s Insecure is filming and set to debut in the fall on HBO. Killing Lazarus will be at ABFF. The film has some of our favorites including Jahmela Biggs, Shayla Hale, the guys from Dormtainment and is directed by Desmond Faison. Check out the trailer below.
Two amazing black legends passed and it’s got the black community taking a headcount of who is left (seems like our man Stevie is now resident tribute performer). Prince and Muhammad Ali left this world and both are not only influential for being the best at what they do but for being unapologetically black while doing it. Ali was the reigning champion; the world’s greatest who took stances against war and though seen as braggadocious he more than backed up all his claims. Prince broke barriers not only in music but in what we defined as black masculinity and was also a major advocate for black women. We are thankful for their work and constant inspiration.