Dear Ernest Baker,
In your recent personal essay on Gawker titled “The Reality of Dating White Women When You Are Black,” you stated unequivocally that you are not a “sell out” because you are a Black man who chooses to seriously date only White women. As a 24-year-old Black woman with very similar life circumstances, I can assure you that after reading your piece — although you may not believe that you are a “sell-out” or that you are riddled by “self hate” —the man who wrote that piece is both. Keep reading »
It feels like the entire Internet is having one big argument about Elliot Rodger, the 22-year-old who murdered six people near the UC Santa Barbara campus before killing himself last Friday.
Did he mostly have a problem with misogyny? Did he mostly have a problem with mental illness? Did he mostly have a problem with a spoiled and entitled upbringing? Is it possible it could be a combination of all of these things?
Like many people this weekend, I read (okay, briskly skimmed — he was not a good writer) his 140-page “manifesto,” “My Twisted World: The Story Of Elliot Rodger,” looking to better understand this tragedy. There’s plenty to unpack there, what with his misogynist, crazy ideas about women deserving to be placed in concentration camps and only used for sex. But what hasn’t gotten quite as much media attention is the area where Elliot Rodger’s misogynistic entitlement and his racist views intersected. Keep reading »
Maya Angelou, a poet and civil rights activist, has died at 86. Angelou is most well-known for her memoir I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings about growing up poor and Black in the South and she leaves behind a trove of poetry, plays, and other books. Angelou was active in the Civil Rights Movement and worked alongside Martin Luther King, Jr., Coretta Scott King and James Baldwin. She was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for a book of poetry in 1971, read a poem at President Bill Clinton’s 1993 inauguration, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama in 2011, and a lifetime achievement award from the National Book Foundation in 2013. In her later life, Angelou was an educator at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Her death was confirmed by her literary agent this morning. [Charlotte.TWCnews.com; New York Times]
Silicon Valley is known for many things — it’s thriving startup culture, the birthplace of Apple and leading the world in innovative technology and engineering — but diversity is not one of them.
Angela Benton knows this first hand. She’s a 32-year-old CEO who moved to the tech promise land in 2011. She’s also an African-American women. The founder of Black Web 2.0 and NewMe Accelerator is constantly reminded that she’s one of few Black women in her industry, most recently by HBO’s new series, also titled “Silicon Valley.” Read more on Hello Beautiful…
Donald Sterling sure has a funny way of “apologizing” for making racist remarks and trying to get back into the good graces of the NBA. The Los Angeles Clippers owner appeared on “Anderson Cooper 360″ last night, and in addition to denying that he’s a racist and claiming he was baited into making those racist statements by his mistress, V. Stiviano, Sterling couldn’t help but go in on Magic Johnson, the NBA legend who was name-checked in his original rant. It seems that Sterling, who maintains that he respects and admires Johnson, just thinks Johnson is a bad role model and should “fade into the background” — not because he’s Black but because he “has AIDS.” (Johnson actually has HIV, not AIDS, but we’ll get to that in a second.) Sterling explained to Cooper:
“Here’s a man I don’t know if I should say this, he acts so holy. He made love with every girl in every city in America, and he had AIDS, and when he had those AIDS, I went to my synagogue and I prayed for him. I hoped he could live and be well. …
I didn’t criticize him. I could have. Is he an example for children? You know, because he has money, he’s able to treat himself. But Magic Johnson is irrelevant in this thing. He didn’t do anything harmful to anybody and I respect him and I admire everything that he does. I’d like to help even more if he would offer me an opportunity to help. I like to help minorities. … What has he done? Can you tell me? Big Magic Johnson, what has he done? He’s got AIDS. … Keep reading »