Black History Month has come and gone and this past weekend marked the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday in Selma. But we still have a long way to go.
Let’s start off with a look at why we don’t need Black History Month anymore.
Each week there are new stories about police brutality. Now you can map where they’re happening using this handy website. The purpose is to help “get the facts about police violence in your community to make the case for change.” The website makes it easier to track all the incidents of police violence that keep happening.
This past week, the official Department of Justice’s report on the investigation conducted on Ferguson’s police department was released. You can read it here. No surprise to anyone, but it reveals a pattern of racism and abuse including tolerating the sexual harassment of its female officers. We’re already starting to see some of the fallout from the report findings. Meanwhile near Ferguson, a white man threatened a black woman and her daughter without fear of police repercussion because “[he’s] white.”
NPR remembers the unsung heroes of Selma. And speaking of Selma’s 50th anniversary, thousands went to Selma to hear President Obama speak. President Obama took the time to remind us that “the march is not yet over.”
There were many civil rights leaders present with many events to commemorate the occasion, including a concert sponsored by BET including performances by Vanilla Ice. This of course drew criticism, but BET defended their choice.
Liberal bastion of diversity, NYC still has some issues with racial/ethnic diversity in their most elite high schools.
Students at UC Berkeley had to school their professor on institutional racism.
The CDC reports that black children have twice as many untreated cavities as white children, mainly due to access to health care and family income.
Remember last week when we brought you news about HBO’s diverse writing fellowship? Yeah about that…
In casting news, Jada Pinkett Smith is leaving Gotham at the end of the season. Damon Wayans, Jr. is joining How to Be Single with Dakota Johnson and Octavia Spencer will play God. Also, Anika Noni Rose is coming back to TV in For Justice .
We need to save Nicole Beharie from Sleepy Hollow, since despite being a co-lead, Beharie was not invited to do the show DVD commentary by the producers.
Emily Nussbaum in the New Yorker talks about Black-ish, Fresh Off the Boat and the slew of new diverse televisions shows that present people of color leads in safe sitcom format, and how that normalizing process is a huge risk for television.
Taraji P. Henson is having an amazing year.
Queen Bey stays slaying. This time, she’s topping Spotify’s list of favorite female artists amongst female listeners.
We end on the beautiful #BlackOutDay movement that took over social media this past weekend that showcased the diversity within the black community while also celebrating blackness.
Note to our fellow non-black PoCs, do not co-opt the language of #BlackOutDay to create #yellowoutday or whatever other representation-based movement. It’s disingenuous at best and anti-black at worst.
And in our tradition of adding a cute or fun video at the end, here’s Mexicans trying Taco Bell for the first time! (My favorite are the two abuelas.)