Mortal Men and the City of Baltimore

“When sht hit the fan, is you still a fan?” — Kendrick Lamar

On the most talked about track (“Mortal Man”) on the most talked about album (To Pimp a Butterfly) of the year, Kendrick Lamar engages in a fictional interview with the late Tupac Shakur. Near interview’s end, Lamar inquires of Shakur, “I can truly tell you that there’s nothing but turmoil going on, so I wanted to ask you what you think is the future for me and my generation today?” In words recorded two decades before, Shakur states, “I think that n***** is tired of grabbing sht out the stores and next time it’s a riot there’s gonna be…bloodshed for real. I don’t think America know that…It’s gonna be like Nat Turner, 1831.”

As violent protests now rage in the City of Baltimore in response to the horrific death of Continue reading “Mortal Men and the City of Baltimore”

7 Netflix Documentaries Worth Streaming

Here is a set of documentaries to stream on Netflix for some educational programming in between your “Gilmore Girls” and “Friends” marathons. Please binge-watch accordingly.

“Fed Up”
“Fed Up” is as infuriating as it is eye-opening. Advocacy documentaries tend to be a bit short-sighted, reveling in their self-righteousness, but director Stephanie Soechtig has more than enough facts to avoid resting on pure outrage. Consider that, since the ’80s, the number of overweight children has gone from one in 20 to one in five. And while entire industries have ignited over weight loss, the number of those struggling to shed pounds only grows. “Fed Up” reveals the complex ways in which the government is inadvertently subsidizing the obesity epidemic through food lobbies. It guts the myth of personal responsibility (emphasized by the rhetoric of “eat more, exercise less”) and gets to the cause of our growing waistlines: processed food that has

fed up
love me

Continue reading “7 Netflix Documentaries Worth Streaming”

Baltimore Smolders After Riot Over Freddie Gray’s Death

By Ian Simpson
BALTIMORE, April 28 (Reuters) – Firefighters on Tuesday battled building fires in Baltimore sparked by rioting that erupted after the funeral Monday of a 25-year-old black man who died after suffering a spinal injury in police custody
Acrid smoke hung over streets where fire crews raced to contain damage from violence that broke out just blocks from the funeral of Freddie Gray and spread through much of West Baltimore.
The unrest – which saw looters ransack stores, pharmacies and a shopping mall and clash with police in riot gear – was the most violent in the United States since Ferguson, Missouri, was torn by gunshots and arson late last year.
Police said 15 officers were injured, six seriously, on Monday.
Gray’s death gave new energy to the public outcry over police treatment of African Americans that flared last year after police killings of unarmed black men in Continue reading “Baltimore Smolders After Riot Over Freddie Gray’s Death”

Just 42 Percent Of The Residents In Freddie Gray’s Neighborhood Are Employed

For two decades, Baltimore’s Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood was the target of multimillion-dollar revitalization efforts, according to the Baltimore Sun. — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

ISIS Shot, Stoned And Beheaded Over 2,000 Off The Battlefield In Syria: Monitor

BEIRUT, April 28 (Reuters) – Ultra-radical Islamic State insurgents have killed at least 2,154 people off the battlefield in Syria since the end of June when the group declared a caliphate in territory it controls, a Syrian human rights monitor said on Tuesday.

The killings of mostly Syrians included deaths by beheading, stoning or gunshots in non-combat situations, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said, urging the United Nations Security Council to act.

“We continue in our calls to the U.N. Security Council for urgent action to stop the ongoing murder against the sons of the Syrian people despite the deafness of members to the screams of pain of the Syrian people,” it said in a statement.

Islamic State, which also holds tracts of land in neighboring Iraq, is an offshoot of al Qaeda and has set up its own courts in towns and villages to administer what Continue reading “ISIS Shot, Stoned And Beheaded Over 2,000 Off The Battlefield In Syria: Monitor”

The Real Cost of Vietnam

The commemoration of the end of the Vietnam War this week in 1975 will be lost on many Americans who are too young to recall the tumultuous events of the Indochina wars. (We also bombed Laos and Cambodia mercilessly in the same period.) The iconic photographs of the U.S. helicopter about to lift off from the roof of the U.S. embassy in Saigon, with desperate Vietnamese scrambling to board, as the final reckoning are symbolic but also misleading. The image of the “pitiful, helpless giant” misleads because the U.S. military had almost completely withdrawn many months before after having laid waste to Vietnam, north and south, for nearly a decade.

What we will hear this week is heartbreaking: 56,000 American soldiers and marines killed in the war, tens of thousands more permanently scarred. They were young men, boys really, some pressed into service by the draft, Continue reading “The Real Cost of Vietnam”

Powerful Doctumentary Spotlights Artists Battling Segregation In Selma

Earlier this year, a spotlight shined on Selma, Alabama, in remembrance of the civil rights march on the Edmund Pettus Bridge that was brutally interrupted by police in 1965. Though the violence of Bloody Sunday catalyzed the successful battle against Jim Crow laws, the city of Selma remains fraught with racism and segregation.

According to the Freedom Foundation, 80 percent of the town is black, but its only country club remains open exclusively to white members. Dallas County, which encompasses Selma, experiences unemployment at two times the national average; the crime rate is five times higher. This is what President Obama was referring to, when he said in a speech he gave on the bridge on the anniversary of the event. “Our march is not yet finished,” he said, “but we are getting closer.”

Partaking in the metaphorical march is an organization called Random Acts of Theatre Continue reading “Powerful Doctumentary Spotlights Artists Battling Segregation In Selma”