background preloader

Key Drivers

Facebook Twitter

The real, racist history behind Thanksgiving | Opinion. When most people think of Thanksgiving, they think about food and football. As a kid you make paper turkeys, watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and eat way too much food. You learn about the friendly Native Americans and the meal they shared with the Pilgrims to celebrate their first successful harvest in a new world. The reality is that this narrative has little basis in actual historical documentation. American Thanksgiving is traced back to a sparsely written-about day back in 1621, when the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Indians supposedly shared an autumn harvest that is widely acknowledged as the first Thanksgiving celebration.

We don’t know too much about the reality of the first Thanksgiving day because several of the accounts current historians look at were written nearly 20 years after the original day, calling into question their accuracy. The history of Thanksgiving is more than just a simple lie, but a gross mischaracterization of our racist and violent beginnings. Thanksgiving, a day of mourning for Native Americans. Plagues, fires, taking from giving — these are the associations many of my relatives have with traditional American Thanksgiving, all the way back to our ancestors. This history of generosity and hospitality by the original people of these lands that were taken away and who were destroyed by illness is well articulated in Native American poet Allison Adelle Hedge Coke’s poem “America, I Sing Back.”

Oh, before America began to sing, I sung her to sleep, held her cradleboard, wept her into day. My song gave her creation, prepared her delivery, held her severed cord beautifully beaded. My song helped her stand, held her hand for first steps, nourished her very being, fed her, placed her three sisters strong. On Thanksgiving Day at noon, as they have for the past 46 years, Native Americans whose heritage lies in the band of Indians called Wampanoag will gather on Cole’s Hill in Plymouth, Massachusetts, to commemorate a National Day of Mourning. In 1637 Massachusetts Gov. The Awful Truths Exposed by Kanye West's Mental Health Struggles • Howl & Echoes. Is anybody really surprised with the way Kanye West’s latest mental health episode has been covered and reacted to?

Appalled, yes. Saddened, yes. But not once surprised In case you haven’t seen or heard, Kanye has allegedly been hospitalised after suffering what was initially being reported as dehydration and sleep deprivation but is now being reported as a ‘psychotic breakdown’. When it comes to the mental health of high profile figures, particularly those as outspoken and divisive as Kanye, there seem to be two distinct sides. But many of us choose to go completely backwards and turn into uncaring spectators at best and cold-hearted assholes at worst. It’s despicable then, to see social media flooded with hate and ignorance towards Kanye West in his latest troubling time. Mental illness doesn’t discriminate, but people sure as shit still do.

In a time where so much progress has been made surrounding mental health issues, this type of response is so disheartening. Image: Footwear News. Kanye West's travails help hip-hop open up on mental health | Society. In the final shot of Kanye West’s video for his 2008 track Love Lockdown the rapper curls up into a foetal position in the middle of a bright white room, his head clutched desperately in his hands.

It is a moment of vulnerability many might see as being at odds with the antagonistic, controversy-courting megastar, who declares himself a god, has snatched awards from the hands of Taylor Swift and makes dramatic outbursts on television chat shows. Yet this week, as news broke of the singer’s hospitalisation in the psychiatric ward of UCLA, reportedly for stress and exhaustion following a week of erratic behaviour on stage and the subsequent cancellation of his tour, the pressures on hip-hop artists to conceal mental health vulnerabilities have come under almost unprecedented scrutiny.

West’s hospitalisation comes at a pivotal time for hip-hop’s complex relationship with mental health. Grammy-winning hip-hop producer 9th Wonder tweeted: That is not to say it has been ignored entirely. Zendaya, ‘Spider-Man Homecoming,’ and the Beauty of A Black Mary Jane. Face it, haters and racists. The upcoming Spidey movie hit the jackpot with model and singer Zendaya reportedly playing the iconic Mary Jane Watson. Some fanboys will never learn to share. According to a report this week at The Wrap, former/future Disney actress and musician Zendaya is playing iconic comic book character Mary Jane Watson in Marvel and Sony’s Spider-Man: Homecoming, opposite Tom Holland as the teenage Peter Parker.

According to irate Spidey fans, this is an abomination, as Zendaya—who is biracial—does not “look like” Mary Jane, the love interest traditionally portrayed as a green-eyed, red-headed, very white lady. “Since Mary Jane is being played by a Black woman, can MLK be played by a White man in a next movie about him?” Trolled @keksec__org on Twitter. “Sorry, but MJ is a white red head. “I don’t know what to think of this. Others decried the move as an insidious example of “blackwashing” which, P.S., is not an actual real thing. So. Zendaya on Body Image, Being an Influential Teen and How Scandal Got Her Into Politics. The Value of a Lotus Birth. Lotus Birth is the practice of leaving the umbilical cord uncut, so that the baby remains attached to the placenta until the cord naturally separates at the navel, exactly as a cut cord does 3-10 days after birth.

Lotus Birth is part of the continuum in the development and unfolding of the human organism. Lotus Birth is also part of the continuum of awakening consciousness expressing itself via the birth process. "We need to relearn what a birth can be like when it is not disturbed by the cultural milieu. We need a reference point from which we should try not to deviate too much. Lotus Birth is such a reference point. " Michel Odent Lotus Birth is a call to pay attention to the natural physiological process. Introduction by Shivam Rachana Having my cord cut hurt.

A three-year-old boy, neighbour of a two-and-a-half-year-old girl, came to her house the morning after her baby brother was born. "These Lotus Birth babies are different, They are more whole- more like babies used to be. Trump’s election means more police brutality towards black people | Patrisse Cullors | Opinion. Donald Trump has won the presidency. But did he win the nation’s heart? We must believe that he did.

And, for now, it appears that his form of white nationalism has won too. That is terrifying but also liberating. Black people have been calling for an end to terror in our communities. Trump was endorsed by the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), one of the largest police unions in the country, with a history of defending violence and racism. It’s the FOP that has largely been unwilling to reprimand officers who’ve killed black people. Other voices joining us in calling for freedom include the Native American community, Latinos, Muslims, the LGBT community and white women who challenge misogyny. White people who voted for Trump decided to invest in a president who underwrites white supremacy in the guise of populism.

My first reaction to Trump being elected was a visceral one. What tools do we need to shift the balance of power in our country back towards justice? Black waitress sent home because of natural hair bun, manager cites ‘policy’ A server at a Jack Astor’s Bar & Grill was sent home during her third day of training because she was wearing her natural hair in a bun. Akua Agyemfra, a 20-year-old college student in Toronto, said that her manager instructed women wear their hair down, but not necessarily every shift. Agyemfra wore a bun after taking out her braids to keep her hair in place and got pulled aside. Buzzfeed reports when Agyemfra took out the bun to show the assistant general manager her natural hair wouldn’t lay flat if left out, she says the manager sent her home. “She was really nice about it,” said Agyemfra. “But it still doesn’t take away from the fact that she sent me home.”

Agyemfra had worn extensions during her interview as well as during the first two days of training, but she wanted freedom to wear her hair naturally. “I know most black women at restaurants are forced to wear wigs or weaves or extensions, or are forced to straighten their hair everyday. 'Wear a weave at work - your afro hair is unprofessional' Image copyright Fify Loewen What happens when your work is acceptable but your hair is not? Leila - not her real name - says her London employer has told her on a number of occasions not to turn up for work with her natural hair. She says she has been encouraged to wear a weave to disguise her afro hair. It is not the first time that work dress codes have come under scrutiny. Nicola Thorp from Hackney, east London described how she was sent home from work for refusing to wear high heel shoes.. But unlike Nicola whose petition calling for a change in dress code laws for women has reached 130,000, Leila says the pressure to conform to western ideals of beauty has become a struggle that she has learnt to accept.

"I am West African, and I work at a consultancy firm in London. "A few years ago I had my hair styled in cornrows and I was asked quite blatantly by my boss how long it would be before my hair was back to 'normal'. "I was taken aback. Watch Tracey getting her weave. Why the Kardashian-Jenner's Hairstyles are Cultural Appropriation. The Kardashian-Jenner clan is at it again. On Tuesday, Khloe Kardashian posted a picture of herself on Twitter wearing Bantu knots with the caption “Bantu Babe.” She took down the caption shortly after, while sister Kylie Jenner posted a picture of her VERY red 19th b-day hair in cornrows on Instagram. And just last week, Kim Kardashian posed in pierced cornrows. This isn’t the first time the sisters have put their hair into styles that are predominantly worn by black women, garnering criticism on social media.

In fact, it’s becoming commonplace in their day-to-day looks. However, it’s a statement Amandla Sternberg made on Kylie’s Instagram post of her wearing cornrows last year that perfectly summed up my feelings on the topic: “When you appropriate black features and culture but fail to use your position of power to help black Americans by directing attention towards your wigs instead of police brutality or racism.” Mic. Don’t get me wrong here. White People Are Rebranding Cornrows as 'Boxer Braids' Gods of Egypt director and studio apologise for lack of diversity | Film. The director and studio behind forthcoming fantasy film Gods of Egypt have apologised for casting mainly Caucasian actors. Alex Proyas and Lionsgate issued statements to Forbes admitting the decision to hand white European actors such as Gerard Butler, Brenton Thwaites and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau the roles of duelling Egyptian deities and mortals had been a mistake.

The move follows rampant criticism from celebrities including Bette Midler, and on social media. Proyas, the director of The Crow, Dark City and I, Robot, said: “The process of casting a movie has many complicated variables, but it is clear that our casting choices should have been more diverse. I sincerely apologise to those who are offended by the decisions we made.” Lionsgate added: “We recognise that it is our responsibility to help ensure that casting decisions reflect the diversity and culture of the time periods portrayed.

Director Alex Proyas believes he cast the right actors for Gods of Egypt. He may have apologised for the lack of diversity in the cast of the action-fantasy movie Gods of Egypt but Australian director Alex Proyas remains convinced he chose the right actors. On the eve of the Australian-shot movie opening wide in the US and this country, the filmmaker behind The Crow, Dark City, I, Robot and Knowing has a pragmatic view of the controversy that blew up when the poster and trailer for the movie were released late last year, drawing flak on social media for the predominantly white cast playing ancient Egyptian mortals and gods. "It's a fact of life," Proyas says. "It's the world we live in right now. The movie is not the best platform for this debate so I'll leave to others to discuss inclusiveness in Hollywood movies.

"I keep coming back to the fact the movie is a fantasy, it's an adventure, it's not based on any historical ideas. "I cast the best actors for the roles," he wrote. "I've been a long time fan of Egyptian mythology," he says now.