growing up blackBeing black is a BEAUTIFUL thing; I didn’t ask to be created this way, to be fully melanted and flourishing with soul. I didn’t ask to be added to the millions of other beautiful black beings who are also proud of their Blackness. While growing up, I never questioned my place in the Black community ever; I did however used to always think to myself that I would never want be anything but Black.

As a child, I didn’t really have the media affect me the way I’ve seen it affect a lot of Black children. I never cared to have a white Barbie doll; I always wanted something that looked slightly like me. (Slightly because my hair wasn’t straight and we all know Barbie dolls have shiny weaves.) The “white is right” phase was never something I had to go through. My mother made sure I was proud of what I was and eventually be proud of the woman I grew up to be (that part is still pending).

buttonpoetryThis poem is so powerful, and extremely fitting with Halloween right around the corner. The racist costumes, especially any and all Black face get-ups, need to die and be buried. The tragedies that are endured by people of color are not for your amusement and/or mockery. Check out this poet, Raven McGill, as she perfectly describes how our lives our viewed in this “post-racist America.”

Spring-Valley-High-School-Assault-640x394I did not want to write anything at all about the Spring Valley High School police brutality incident because I was just too angry and too fed up. Angry and fed up of seeing the same thing happening over and over, with nothing being done to make it stop. Added to the ever-growing list of things black people are forbidden to do while being black (some of which includes laughing, missing a traffic stop, attending a teenage pool party and engaging in a staring contest with a white playmate) is sitting in a class room and attempting to learn, while being black. Like many other blacks, I had to watch a young woman who incited no violence nor put up any resistance being dragged like a dog from her desk in class and pulled out of the classroom, while her classmates and teacher sat by and did nothing to make the attack stop.

justlatasha1Every Tuesday and Thursday we will be featuring videos from the ridiculously #woke, hilarious and always on point Youtube personality, JustLatasha. I had the pleasure of interviewing this queen a while back about why she started her channel and what message she wants to get across. She knows how to serve a good read like no one’s business, but always opens up the eyes of the viewer to the many injustices faced by minorities on a day to day basis. Here she breaks down exactly what happened when the Black Students at the University of Cape Town decided to protest the 10 percent increase in tuition fees, and how White students surprisingly came to their aid. Check out the video below.

6 black artists to watchMany black artists who dare to be different pay the price of going largely unheard of and unnoticed; as a result, some bend under the pressure and go mainstream. These seven artists are sticking to their guns, though, and it’s a damn good thing that they are, since they are putting out some of the realest music heard among contemporary black artists. Keep an eye out for them in 2016 and beyond.

Black Opal AdLawd, the folk over at Black Opal done phucked up.

Black Opal, the makeup line that has long been known to have a target market of women of color, has suddenly decided to “expand their horizons” and target “all shades of beauty.” Their first step in doing so? Plastering the face of a Caucasian model all over their latest ad campaigns. Black Opal representatives have even gone as far as saying that the makeup line “was never just for black women.”

Oh the Caribbean, an array of places that people want to visit to get away and relax. The Caribbean, as well as its people, has had such a huge effect on American culture, but sadly

Zendaya ColemanZendaya Coleman continues to exude awesomeness in large doses.

By age 19, many black girls begin to grow into their womanly figures and the trademark hips and thighs black women are known for come into play. While some would have us believe that this figure is something to be hidden or altered, Zendaya isn’t having any of it.

The 19-year-old singer/actress/model recently called out a magazine for severely photo-shopping an image of her to reduce the size of her hips and torso. After seeing the altered images in Modeliste magazine, she took to Instagram to post her complaint alongside the retouched and unaltered photos of herself. The caption read, “Had a new shoot come out today and was shocked when I found my 19-year-old hips and torso quite manipulated. These are the things that make women self-conscious, that create unrealistic ideals of beauty we have. Anyone who knows who I am knows I stand for honest and pure self-love. So I took it upon myself to release the real pic, and I love it.”

Emily Stein HAIRDORemember getting your hair done as a kid? Many of us had a love/hate relationship with getting our hair braided or styled: we hated the process, but loved the after-effect.

For blacks, learning to braid and style our natural hair is more or less a rite of passage; almost a sacred one. Kudos to Emily Stein for attempting to capture and immortalize that sacredness through her camera lens. “Hairdo,” the latest project by the UK-based photographer, is an on-going photo series featuring fresh-faced young black Londoners sporting various hairstyles.

nigerian duo rivals GoogleOn the surface, Nigerian-born brothers Anesi and Osine Ikhianosime seem like your average African teenagers. They attend high school, enjoy playing sports, and have active social lives.

The difference is that while other youngsters their age are saving their cash allowances to purchase all the hottest new products modern technology has to offer, these two are busy building a technological empire, and it all begins with their very own web browser.