Social media timelines began to flood with images of an activist by the name of Oluwatoyin “Toyin” Salau Monday morning.
This selfless 19-year-old Black Lives Matter activist was vocal about her personal struggles and still made time to protest on behalf of the lives of others while looking for a safe haven for herself.
A victim of sexual assault, Toyin sought refuge in a church to escape a current living situation only to fall into the arms of a man who took advantage of her vulnerability.
In her Twitter thread, Toyin went on the write of her experience of what happened when she went home with the man that she stated “came disguised as a man of God”
According to her depiction of events, she said that the man exposed himself to her after offering her a shower, and later started rubbing her back and body "before he climaxed."
She detailed about her traumatic experience before she disappeared completely… Several days later her body was discovered.
No more being silent. Hear her name, hear her story and listen when we say
The least protected and respected women in America has always been the Black woman. She deserves love.
She deserves protection.
She deserves recognition in a world where she is treated less then equal.
She deserves peace.
She deserves a voice and a platform that takes the time to listen...
Because who is here to protect us, when we are busy protecting everyone else?
--- A Black Woman
For centuries fragility, purity and innocence have been used as a depiction of what is “the white woman”. The story of the damsel in distress, has leaped from the storybook pages and spewed into reality. Only this time we need to ask: who really needs saving?
This false narrative of white women not having a hand in how racism has festered from their role in enslavement, Jim Crow through to today’s racist driven ideologies is finally rearing itself.
The damsel in distress tale ends here as we address if the moat is intended to keep her safe or was it to protect us from her?
White Women’s Role in Slavery:
Contrary to popular belief, white women actively participated and profited from the slave market for economic and social empowerment. Though slavery was based on human bondage, to white society this was an economic regime and enslaved bodies held value. From a young age white women were taught how to ‘control’ and manage those enslaved through acts of extreme violence and in many cases a state of near-starvation for the same reasons that white men did...control.
Shannon Keeting from BuzzFeed.News stated: “For centuries, the white damsel in distress has been “protected” from the black man deemed predator by various means of state-sanctioned violence. But while white women might claim otherwise, they haven't merely been a tool wielded by white patriarchs. They have, in fact, actively participated in the disenfranchisement, assault, and murder of black people.”
Erasing the horrors and the darkness of white women’s investment and involvement in the history of slavery has played a significant role as to why we are stunned to see the way that some white women interact with black people today.
Hello Karen...From Jim Crow to Today’s Society
Karen /noun/ : A white woman who uses her privilege and feeling of entitlement to incite danger on black individual(s) that impede on her whiteness by contacting law enforcement.
This racialized group of white women are nothing new and everything to be vigilant of. These antics of aggressive patrolling of public spaces stems directly from whites not wanting to share spaces they felt should be their own. In the 1950’s and 60’s when courts outlawed blatant segregation in public spaces, many whites opposed the change and wanted to keep their areas free of integration of any kind which later led to ‘white flight’.
White people believe they are so entitled that no black person should dare occupy ‘their’ area. Out of hate and fear of losing the power they worked so hard to steal and murder for, they are lashing out in ways they have always done, only now it is being filmed. #ExistingWhileBlack is exhausting when living in a world built entirely on racism. The days of stepping off the curb when a white person is approaching, giving up a seat in public transit to a white person, are over white White America. We are here. We are not moving.
Shedding light on two sisters who were found dead under a Georgia highway by road crews early Wednesday morning.
On May 12th, the bodies of Vanita Richardson, 19, and Truvenia Campbell, 30, were discovered with shotgun shells found near their bodies, bags over their heads prior to being ‘dropped over the bridge’ in an apparent homicide [ruled by the Georgia Bureau of investigation].
These unfortunate killings came just days before Richardson’s scheduled graduation as a high school senior. The sisters were said to be very close and the community feels this tremendous loss of these untimely deaths.
The investigation is still on-going towards finding those responsible.
“The most disrespected person in America is the black woman.
The most unprotected person in America is the black woman.
The most neglected person in America is the black woman.”
-Who Taught You to Hate Yourself by Malcom X
Deeply rooted in our nation's history, black women continue to be portrayed as less than in comparison to other minority women and even black male counterparts. They are continuously subjected to racial stereotypes that continue to dictate and justify how society treats them as a whole.
Stereotypes about Black women still dominant in state policy today.
Thought to be aggressive, hostile, bad-tempered, the ‘angry black woman’ leaves racial discrimination and negative connotations pitted against black women as a probable cause when it comes to police brutality.
Though Black killings at the hands of police are now receiving national media attention, as a result of the #BlackLivesMatter movement does not give light to the black women that lose their lives. They rarely consume media attention in the way that the killing of Black men and boys receive (not to say that coverage of the killing of men and boys is any less important).
According to The Violent State: Black Women's Invisible Struggle Against Police Violence, “There was no database the authors could access to identify Black women killed or brutalized by the police. The project [#sayhername] relied on the families of the women killed and their own researchers to compile the women’s stories.”
Cases of Black women so rarely make the news. Much like Breonna Taylor, 26-year old EMT who was killed by police who stormed into her home while searching for a suspect who was already in police custody. Nearly two months ago this incident occurred and is only now receiving national attention and a call for justice.
There is a long-standing problem with media coverage, or the lack thereof, of crimes committed against Black women.
Although black women regularly face the same brutality as black men at the hands of police, their stories rarely ever reach the surface.
The belief that black women are labeled the aggressors leaves killing them justifiable.
Black women are murdered by the police.
They are assaulted and injured by the police
They are arrested unlawfully by the police
They are tried, convicted and incarcerated for defending themselves against non police violence
Many of these cases go unheard of and the time is now to bring light to their untold stories.
As if 2020 wasn’t a beast on its own amidst the Coronavirus outbreak, black men continue to be hunted and gunned down.
With the recent murders of Ahmaud Arbery and Sean Reed, communities are referring to these cases as modern day lynchings.
Like lynchings of the past, the deaths of Arbery and Reed along with countless videos that have garnered media attention throughout the years of Black Americans being assaulted and killed in racially charged attacks, all stem from the history of our nation's “past”.
Black death and suffering consumed by the public is deeply rooted in America.
Images of lynchings were commonly shared as a means of control whether that meant to terrorize Black Americans or fuel hatred amongst white-supremacist groups.
In the cases of these two unarmed black men, who were gunned down has sparked enough social outrage to garner the attention of those in judicial power.
Sean Reed filmed himself fleeing from cops while streaming a Facebook Live to nearly 4,000 viewers. While pulling over his car he calls out to his viewers “Please come get me!”, before fleeing from his car where he is chased by officers. Someone could be heard yelling ‘stop’ followed by the sound of taser then over a dozen shots were fired, killing Reed at the scene. Unaware that Reed was still live on Facebook, someone can be heard saying
“I think it’s going to be a closed casket homie” as if to mock his now lifeless body.
While the footage of Ahmaud Arberys murder clearly shows two white men essentially hunting him down as he jogged in his Georgia neighborhood, you can’t help but wonder would his killers be in custody if it wasn’t for the social media uprising that recently gained media attention? Seeing as Arbery’s case took place on the 23rd of February and no arrests were made until May 7th begs the question.
Neither civilians nor police have the authority to execute people they suspect of crimes let alone not be convicted, despite video evidence. While present-day videos may increase awareness and put pressure on law enforcement to bring charges against the perpetrators, the numbers of convictions does not add up.
With laws like stand your ground in place and gun laws that allow many to claim self defense, it becomes the perfect veil to cover one's true racially motivated intent.
The breakdown: How the Cornona virus is impacting Black America in different parts of the globe.
Covid 19...The Rona...
No matter what you call it, we can be sure that you’ve heard of it.
This global pandemic has engulfed our lives with constant news streams, conspiracy theories on where the virus originated, and trying to find the best solutions to avoid further contamination.
The disproportionate number of black deaths that have surged over this pandemics invasion have been alarming. With death tolls rising, leaves many confused as to why it is deeply impacting black communities.
According to a report from Reuters, Black Americans are more likely to die of the Corona virus than any other group in the U.S.
Unequal Health Care
With unequal access to healthcare a pandemic such as this only magnifies the disparities in healthcare that communities of color are left to endure. Less access to health insurance, paid sick leave, and health care result in the improper treatment for ailments that could make contracting covid-19 a higher risk.
Since some Black Americans are known to suffer from underlying health conditions such as kidney disease, diabetes, obesity and asthma leaves experts to believe puts those more susceptible to contracting the virus.
Along with good healthcare, finances come into question since typically jobs are the ones to offer healthcare benefits. With a large portion of Black Americans holding hourly or lower-wage jobs, doesn’t allow for time off or the capabilities to work from home. Many times being deemed as an ‘essential worker’ leaves very little space to self quarantine when a job involves interacting with the public with minimal to no protection.
According to BBCnews, store employee Clarionta Jones stated that her managers have told staff they cannot wear gloves and masks when interacting with customers. These low-income areas are automatically deemed as expendable and left with no choice when it comes to their health or the health of their families.
“If I'm sick I'm just going to take something for it and go to work. I don't want to miss my check, I have two kids. This is not a choice" stated Jones.
Trying to work while sick especially with this virus not only puts themselves in more harm's way, but contributes to further spread of the disease within the community.
One would think that we are in fact ‘all in this together’ protecting ourselves and those around us by wearing facial coverings...but this false narrative rears itself when it comes to one group in particular...
What black people must endure even in the hours of a global pandemic is disgraceful just to be deemed as 'nonthreatening'. Democratic lawmakers are now in talks with law enforcement to implement anti-bias police training over the usage of face masks or other face covering towards people of color during the coronavirus pandemic.
The China Backlash
In another case of shifting the blame, Black people yet again take the fall. Black residents are facing eviction and denied entry into Chinese establishments out of ‘fear’ of the black community being a carrier of the virus.
From being denied entry into hospitals
Fast food chains (via twitter)
Citizens being evicted from housing out of speculation that the black community will set off a second wave of the covid-19.
Now as certain establishments slowly reopen within Texas and Atlanta, one can’t help but question why the states with large percentages of black residents are so ready and willing to open. These elected officials feel saving ‘the economy’ in exchange for more black lives is a fair trade.
Stay safe, stay home and protect yourselves in a society that was not meant to protect and serve all.
Why luxury brands will continue to be the demise of black culture
Leeching eyes pierce against melanated flesh without an uttered word. Complexion does the talking here.
Many luxury stores have you labeled and prejudged before a foot is set in the door. Un-welcomed stares turn into your every move being traced around the store to spotting clenched bags from other patrons as you pass by.
These same luxury stores are now coming under fire for their blatantly insensitive ‘cultural mistakes’
Burberry Noose Sweatshirt
Gucci Sweater That Resembles Black Face
Prada Black Monkey Key Rings
Dove Ad Campaign and H&M Racist Shirt
Yet many continue to give their GREEN where their BLACK is unwelcome.
But why…Is it for acceptance, reassurance, success?
It all comes down to three vital attributes.
When a black person wears designer, why is it then that the authenticity is questioned?
Accepting that someone from the same cultural background is “better off” financially seems unlikely to most within a society. There is always an underlying skepticism that brings people to question the financial status of another. The constant competition to one up or be better than the next will be a battle that will never succeed.
Say hello to debt… spending an entire paycheck for…a name is the “norm” for most. These labels are the modern day brand that is voluntarily etched upon ones body. The hate spewed within this society promotes majority to look outward for acceptance, even if that means going in debt to perceiving to be something they are not.
Having designer has always been a symbol of “success”, in reference to entertainers in the industry donning prestigious labels.
Many feel as though that having the “look” of success and perceiving to be a certain way ties into the ‘acceptance’ many strive for. This notion comes from constantly striving for the same reassurance internally.
Once acceptance, reassurance or society’s version of success is no longer is an accomplishment, is when it will be recognized that these big name companies need the black community more than they need them.
These big name brands DO NOT, HAVE NOT, WILL NOT care about black and brown people. They design, they create, they mass produce, they issue an apology to save face towards a culture they never intended to create for. These brands create for people who look like them, with no regard to this diverse society.
Start by shopping putting your money where your dollars are respected and appreciated.
Will you continue shopping with these big brands? Let us know in the comments below.
Jordan Peele is back at it again, this time with a Thriller starring Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke who have a fight for survival against clones who are set out to kill them. Though the film has yet to be released (March 2019), that hasn’t stopped the theories and hidden messages discovered that you need to keep your eyes peeled for.
From fan theories to the analysis of Peele’s other projects all gathered from this 2:39 second trailer will leave ready for more.
The symbolism behind the signature headline image: (Get Out Comparison)
No more hiding black pain. The tears of black people have been something that has been ignored for over 400 years. With Peele’s films we are forced to be drawn into these characters wide set eyes as tears stream down their cheeks that can’t be ignored where you can’t seem to look away. Their eyes locked, conveying a trapped expression fearful expression. No longer can we look away but face the pain that has and continues to be endured head on.
It is believed that the idea behind this film is lined to W.E.B Du Bois’ theory of Double Consciousness. This theory believes that black Americans have been conditioned to have a dived personality due to societal views verses who they really are. These doppelgängers are said to be the psychical manifestation of the side of them that is suppressed until now they come face to face with their worst enemy, themselves.
I Got 5 On It (Meaning)
Who can forget the ’95 throwback “I Got 5 On It”, the classic song made an entrance on the opening trailer leaving everyone wanting more.
But what is the significance of this song in the film? The meaning behind this song may be weed (like Shahadi Wright-Joseph who plays daughter Zora Wilson in the film pointed out); but it also talks about going half on the purchase hence: the song title. So how does this song relate to the film? Perhaps the song is a subtle hint as to what is to come. It can be interpreted that someone is going half on helping to create these clones or make a ‘purchase’ (like in Get Out) OR it can simply mean the going half on something as in splitting, the splitting of the bodies.
All we know is Jordan Peele will not disappoint and give us all the answers we need and more! Let us know your thoughts and theories in the comment section below.
After receiving a life sentence for a crime he did not commit, Richard Phillips has become the longest serving exonerated inmate in American history.
Richard was convicted of first degree murder & conspiracy which carried a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. Later to discover, 38 years later, a man named Richard Polombo, also accused, admitted the truth. He admitted to lying, for he never knew, never planned a murder with and never even met Phillips!
After being convicted at the age of 26, the now 71 year old is making name for himself beyond the prison walls. During his incarceration, Phillips turned to art as an escape where he found his passion. He started his budding career by selling handmade greeting cards to other inmates to accumulate just enough to purchase paint supplies.
During Phillips sentence, he created over 400 watercolor paintings that are now worth well over thousands of dollars. Through his art he created symbols of hope and survival; he conveyed his dark times while others embodied light and life. Each piece exposed passion and life that resonates with his audience.
Phillips attorney, Gabi Silver stated of his paintings: “To suffer what he has suffered, to still be able to find good in people and to still be able to see the beauty in life—it’s remarkable.”
If you would like to contribute to or purchase an original painting from Richard Phillips, be sure to visit his site Richard Phillips Gallery for more stunning creations.
Let’s hear it for the people in the back! We ALL might not have went home with an Oscar last night, but it sure felt like it when Jordan Peele became the first black screen writer to take home an Oscar win.
When one of us wins, we all do. In the name of the CULTURE!
Peele who is known for his comedy and acting sketches just added director to his resume when he wrote and directed the reality(ish) horror film Get Out.
According to cnn.com : In the adapted screenplay category, only three films with black writers have won in the past — "Precious," "Twelve Years a Slave," and "Moonlight."
After winning the Oscar for best original screenplay, Peele made history by becoming the first black director to receive nominations in the writing, directing, and best picture categories for his directorial debut.
“I stopped and started writing this movie about 20 times because I thought it was impossible…” --- Jordan Peele
The power of following through with your dreams…