Tag Archives: community

Eric Reid Signs with Panthers Following NFL Grievance

Pro Bowl free-agent safety Eric Reid signed with the Carolina Panthers on Thursday (September 27) after he was not re-signed with the 49ers after filing a grievance with the NFL. Reid also made waves as the first player to join Colin Kaepernick in kneeling during the national anthem to protest racial inequality and police brutality.

Both Reid and Kaepernick filed grievances with the NFL, alleging that owners and the league prevented their employment because of the protests. Kaepernick, who is still unsigned, reacted to the news of Reid joining the Panthers, tweeting, “Congrats 2 my brother @e_reid35, all pro safety who should have been signed the 1st day of free agency, who has signed a football contract. He was the 1ST person 2 kneel alongside me. Eric is a social justice warrior, continues to support his family. and communities in need.”

Eric Reid Signs with Panthers Following NFL Grievance

Reid’s deal is a one-year contract worth up to $2 million with play-time and Pro Bowl incentives

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Rookie Police Officer in Detroit Fired After ‘Zoo Animals’ Post on Social Media

A rookie police officer in Detroit was recently fired for a post he made via Snapchat. The officer referred to potential suspects as “zoo animals.”

Rookie Police Officer in Detroit Fired After 'Zoo Animals' Post on Social Media

Former officer Sean Bostwick was let go according to Detroit police chief James Craig, who revealed the news during a press conference regarding the matter. Craig said “He was terminated. This is his last day on our payroll. Tomorrow, he will no longer be a Detroit, police officer. He is clear on that.”

Bostwick’s caption on his post said: “Another night to [wrangle] up these zoo animals.” A former Detroit police officer caught wind of the post and shared it to his Facebook with the caption “This is a newly appointed Detroit Police Officer. The caption speaks for itself.”

James Craig noted he met with Bostwick in person to let him know that he was being fired as a result of the post.

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UN General Assembly Laughs at Trump’s “Extraordinary Progress” Speech

Donald Trump garnered some unexpected laughs after telling the UN General Assembly on Tuesday (September 25) about the “extraordinary progress” of his administration in a speech.

He started off by saying, “One year ago I stood before you for the first time in this grand hall. I addressed the threats facing our world, and I presented a vision to achieve a brighter future for all of humanity. Today I stand before the United Nations General Assembly to share the extraordinary progress we’ve made.”

He added, “In less than two years, my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country. America’s… So true.”

After hearing laughter in the crowd, Trump responded by saying, “I didn’t expect that reaction but that’s okay.”

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T.I. Curating Pop-up Museum in Atlanta

Trap music will be getting some props thanks to plans by rapper T.I. to curate a museum in Atlanta, Vibe is reporting.

T.I. Curating Pop-up Museum in Atlanta

The pop-up museum is launching 15 years from the release of the artist’s Trap Muzik, which he said he created to draw attention to all the frustrations a Black man in America might have to juggle – from co-parenting to drug addiction, and from society’s negative view to struggling relationships. Atlantic Records produced Trap Muzik in 2003.

T.I. is launching the museum in partnership with hip-hop journalist Maurice Garland, creative artist DL Warfield and others, Vibe reports. Future, 21 Savage, 2 Chainz, Gucci Mane, Rick Ross, and Young Jeezy are some of the artists who will be featured because they helped elevate the public presence of the trap, according to Vibe.

The pop-up museum has a website and Instagram account set up. Both instruct people to “stay tuned.”

T.I. Curating Pop-up Museum in Atlanta

When he released Trap Muzik, T.I. said he wanted to create something that would be a classic.

“I knew I had to make timeless music,” Noisey quoted him as saying. “It was about showing that even if you were participating in felonious activities, there were still other things you needed to deal with: you’re not just drug dealing but also dealing with a relationship with your parents, your girlfriend, having a child too young and being looked down on by society as one thing when you’re actually more than that definition.”

He told Noisey, “You might have a homeboy who just died, but he wasn’t even in the streets like that. Trap Muzik was kind of crystallizing this Black experience into a piece of music.”

The pop-up museum will be located in West Atlanta and will open to the public on Sept. 30. Trap music evolved out of Southern hip-hop and is considered a sub-genre.

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Nike’s Colin Kaepernick TV ad is inspirational, not controversial

The question Friday morning wasn’t whether President Trump would tweet about the debut of Colin Kaepernick’s Nike commercial but whether it would be the first thing he would tweet about after waking up.

And there it was, first thing on the presidential docket at 6:56 a.m.

“What was Nike thinking?” Trump tweeted rather briefly and directly.

But if you actually watched the commercial that aired on NBC during the third quarter of season-opening games between the Falcons and Eagles, it’s pretty obvious what Nike is thinking – and it’s not whether to take a knee during the national anthem.

All you need to know about Nike’s ultimate goal with the Kaepernick campaign is contained in the ad’s first minute. It begins with a skateboarder falling off a rail, a child with no legs on a wrestling mat, an African-American boy who couldn’t be 10 years old running down a dirt road, a young shadowboxing woman wearing hijab, a surfer, a Pop Warner football game and a blond girl playing high school football against boys.

This isn’t about consumers Nike might lose in their anger over Kaepernick. It’s about cultivating an entire generation of consumers who are up for grabs at a moment where the lines between culture, politics and activism are blurry – a notion that might make older people uncomfortable but is now the coming-of-age reality for anyone under 18.

Ironically, if you take Kaepernick out of the ad, there is nothing controversial about the images and words contained inside of it. “Don’t ask if your dreams are crazy; ask if they’re crazy enough” seems like it could be a tag line to practically any Nike ad campaign, a direct link to the “Just Do it” slogan the company is celebrating with a 30th anniversary push.

Every one of those images connects to the overall theme of being different, of overcoming some type of obstacle or stereotype, which fits in well with why Kaepernick is here in the first place rather than playing quarterback in the NFL.

But it also seems designed to appeal to teenagers, without making it necessary to align with Kaepernick’s political and social justice views.

Yes, it’s Kaepernick’s voice and his image at the end, walking down a city street wearing a black mock turtleneck underneath a tan coat. But there is nothing in the ad that connects him to football or the NFL, even though his own backstory – being adopted by white parents, getting one college scholarship offer from Nevada and ultimately quarterbacking a team to the Super Bowl – contains some of the same inspirational threads as the people he’s narrating over.

Moreover, the commercial’s only allusion to the protest he sparked is subtle. As the camera brings Kaepernick into view from behind – you recognize him by his Afro – he’s standing and looking at a waving American flag being projected onto a building.

Then, as Kaepernick walks out of the frame, the images of the young people from earlier in the ad appear on those buildings and the words are flashed on the screen: “It’s only crazy until you do it. Just do it.”

Casting Kaepernick in this light is interesting because he’s the only person in the ad who isn’t shown playing a sport or wearing some type of Nike gear. That seems intentional, as if to acknowledge that he’s moved beyond the sports context and into the zeitgeist of these political and cultural times.

And when you think about what Nike’s actually trying to accomplish here, it makes perfect sense.

Though Nike has been the country’s preeminent sneaker and sports apparel company for a generation, Adidas has steadily been making headway, particularly with younger people. In the second quarter of 2018, Adidas posted a $485 million profit, shattering Wall Street expectations. That followed nine consecutive quarters in which the company’s sales increased by at least 20%.

Fueled by its alliance with pop culture stars such as Kanye West and Pharrell Williams, Adidas has made up significant ground and surpassed Jordan Brand (a Nike subsidiary) last year as No. 2 in the sneaker game.

Nike didn’t really have a comparable face, and many of its preeminent athletes they’ve been associated with outside the NBA (such as Tiger Woods, Roger Federer, Serena Williams) are at the back end of their careers and don’t necessarily identify with teenagers. But that’s what shoe companies have to do: Figure out not just who their customers are now, but who their customers are going to be in five years, 10 years and beyond.

That’s who this is aimed at. We’re on the cusp of welcoming a generation of kids into adulthood who grew up with politics being injected into practically every area of their lives. Whether that’s a good thing will be for others to determine, but it’s a moment that’s happening and Nike is looking for a way to capitalize on it.

Kaepernick probably won’t sell a lot of shoes to my contemporaries. But would the ad that played Thursday night resonate with high school kids who are growing up in a confusing, polarized, politically active era? Nike is counting on it.

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Meek Mill Donates 6,000 Backpacks with Supplies to Philly Students

Meek Mill showed up at his alma mater, James G Blaine Elementary, and announced that he’s donating 6,000 backpacks with supplies to students in Philly.

He stated, “Growing up in Philly, I’ve watched families struggle to make ends meet and buy basic school supplies for their kids. Those memories stay with me and that’s why I’m committed to giving back to families in my hometown, putting smiles on kids’ faces and helping them start the school year on the right note with the right supplies.”

Over the past five years, Meek Mill and his Dream Chasers crew have been giving back to his hometown with charitable drives, including giving away turkeys on Thanksgiving. Meek is also getting involved with a “major foundation” that will focus on criminal justice reform, according to 76ers owner Michael Rubin.

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Baltimore Officer Resigns After Video Shows Him Repeatedly Punching Man

A Baltimore police officer has resigned following a viral video of him repeatedly punching a man identified as 26-year-old DaShawn McGrier.

According to reports, McGrier was moving to leave after police pulled up to where he was hanging out and he noticed an officer that he had a history with and didn’t want any trouble. McGrier was arrested in June for allegedly assaulting the unnamed officer, and his trial was scheduled for later this month. This time around, it was McGrier who was assaulted.

The officer reportedly asked McGrier for his identification and when he refused, the officer hit McGrier repeatedly and pinned him to the ground. McGrier’s attorney Warren Brown said he sustained a “Fractured jaw, two fractured ribs, he lost feeling in his left leg,” in the incident. He has since regained feeling in his leg.

According to Baltimore Police, McGrier was taken into custody and received medical treatment, and he was released without any charges. The unnamed officer was suspended during an investigation of the incident, and the officer later resigned.

Interim Baltimore Police Commissioner Gary Tuggle released a statement, which read, “While I have an expectation that officers are out of their cars, on foot, and engaging citizens, I expect that it will be done professionally and constitutionally. I have zero tolerance for behavior like I witnessed on the video today. Officers have a responsibility and duty to control their emotions in the most stressful of situations.”

Brown is planning to take action against the officer and the Baltimore Police Department.

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