All Articles Tagged "racism"

Denzel Washington Side Eyes Hollywood Executives Who Offered Him Racist Role

April 14th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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WENN

WENN

 

If you thought you could not love Denzel Washington more, here is your chance to completely adore him!

In a 2012 Times Talk  interview that we’re just catching, Washington claims he turned down the chance to act in a film despite providing him a hefty salary. Taking advice from a Hollywood icon, Denzel says Sidney Portier warned it would change his brand as an actor. According to Upworthy, Washington stated to the interviewer, the role  and synopsis would only “perpetuate racism in the name of comedy.”

I got a part in a movie in 1986. I call it the “N****r They Couldn’t Kill.” [The character] He raped a white woman; they tried to electrocute him but it didn’t work and he became a cult hero. Then they tried to hang him. There were some Jewish people in the audition room who said “it is funny.” And I said to them “yeah, it’s like you bring some Jewish people into a room and they think it is a shower but it is gas. And they said “right!” And I said “Right! That ain’t funny!” So to me it was not funny to put a rope around my MFing neck and I made a point. I called Sidney (Portier) and told him “man they are offering me $600,000 to play the “N****r They Couldn’t Kill.” And he told me, “I’m not going to tell you what to do. But I will tell you this, the first, two, three or four films you do in this business will dictate how you are perceived.

That was sage advice! And they’re wise words for everyone. When you’re just starting out, you’re eager to get your foot in the door and you think you ought to say yes to anything that’s thrown your way. But you should never leave your better judgment at the door. If something doesn’t feel right, or you find it outright offensive to you or to others, it’s probably best to wait until you find something more in line with your brand of work.

Check out Denzel’s interview, below. We wish other black performers would take heed to the same advice, too.

God Don’t Like Ugly! Paula Deen Restaurant Shut Down After Lawsuit

April 4th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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From BlackVoices 

 

A wildly popular Georgia restaurant at the center of a lawsuit that left the reputation of famed Southern celebrity cook Paula Deen in shambles has reportedly closed.

Uncle Bubba’s Seafood & Oyster House announced the closure Thursday on its Facebook page, The Savannah Morning News (http://bit.ly/1owsS1s) and WSAV television (http://bit.ly/1gseldc) reported.

“Thank you for 10 great years. Uncle Bubba’s is now closed,” the Facebook message said.

Deen’s brother, restaurant operator Bubba Hiers, decided to shut the eatery’s doors “in order to explore development options for the waterfront property on which the restaurant is located,” the reports said, quoting a statement from the Key Group public relations and marketing company. “At this point, no specific plans have been announced,” the statement said.

The closure was effective as of Thursday, and employees will be provided with severance pay and assistance looking for new jobs, the statement said.

Deen co-owned the restaurant with Hiers, who oversaw daily operations. Former employee Lisa Jackson sued them both in 2012, saying she worked in an environment rife with racial slurs and sexual innuendo during her five years as manager of the restaurant.

The case got little attention outside Savannah until Deen herself was questioned under oath in a legal deposition. A transcript filed with the court the following month showed Deen acknowledged using racial slurs in the past. When an attorney asked if she had ever used the N-word, Deen replied: “Yes, of course.” She also added, “It’s been a very long time.”

Read more about Paula Deen’s restaurant at BlackVoices.com 

 

‘He Acted Like A Single Man:’ Mother Of Swizz Beatz’s Daughter, Jahna Sebastian, Offers Clarity On Their Affair

April 1st, 2014 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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A few weeks ago we told you about London-based recording artist and mother to Kaseem “Swizz Beatz” Dean’s daughter, Jahna Sebastian. In a telling interview, Jahna argued that her daughter, Nicole, was not the reason for Swizz’s split from Mashonda because she made sure that she did not reveal that she’d given birth to Swizz’s child until after the troubled couple announced their divorce. Since our initial report, many of you still had questions regarding the logic behind Jahna’s decision, what prompted her to even sleep with a married man and how she can say that things are “all good” with the producer’s now-ex-wife. We were recently given the opportunity to chat with Jahna, who offered answers to some of your burning questions.

“I don’t want to be associated with those women who look out for a rich man, a baller or any other successful man to help them have an easy ride in life,” the singer/songwriter told me. “That behavior is totally the opposite of who I am and what I represent, I have always chosen to get what I want through hard work myself, even though there have always been great men around. I have always relied on myself. I work hard for my career and my child.”

Unlike the way it is now, the single mother explained that her former lover’s personal life was nowhere near as publicized as it now at the time of their relationship. In fact, Jahna says that his personal life was so under the radar in the UK, that she had no idea he was even married.

“I was not aware of him being married at the time, I thought he was single like myself and he acted like a single man,” the “I Am Free” singer explained. “He was not that well-known here anyway at that time, his private life was nowhere near as publicized in 2007 as it is now.”

“I don’t really follow other musicians lives anyway. I saw this as a meeting of equals,” she resolved before revealing that their affair had taken place prior to her learning of his marital status. “I found out that he was married after things had already happened, but it was too late.”

Shortly after this major revelation, Kaseem returned to the States and Jahna received more shocking news.

“He left to US and I was absolutely shocked to learn a few weeks later that I was pregnant as I did not plan to have children until the age of thirty and definitely not to be a single mother in a situation like that. Career, marriage, then children – in that particular order – was my plan. When things happen not as you planned, the only explanation to that is fate. A child is a blessing regardless.”

On top of learning that she would be bringing a child into the world alone, the Russian refugee was detained during her pregnancy due to immigration issues. However, instead of reaching out to Kaseem for help, she went through the process alone out of her refusal to destroy his marriage.

“When I was unlawfully detained for two months by a major mistake of the Home Office while being pregnant with Nicole, I came out of it without her father’s help or even child support at the time even though I knew from the start who the father was. If I made claims at that time, it would have created a scandal all over the place and caused the divorce, so I chose the hard way. I dealt with all my immigration problems which were actually Nicole’s as well since she could only stay in UK as my dependent, without bothering Swizz or anyone on the other side with lawsuits.”

“I wrote to every person in UK I could think of instead of sending lawyers to Swizz and destroying his marriage. I chose to go without child support for two years and the help of someone who could have easily resolved the situation with his connections.”

“My immigration case was publicized at the time but there wasn’t even one mention of his name, although with that situation it could have made even bigger headlines, but I had to save my child from becoming possible reason of the divorce. I clearly imagined how it would hurt to be in a position of a wife learning that her husband went and had a baby on the side, and so I stayed away from this.”

Former Belizean Boxer Dies After Protecting Daughter From Hate Crime

March 24th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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Sun Times

Sun Times

 

From BlackVoices 

A retired Belizean boxer well-liked in his North Side Chicago neighborhood was killed Wednesday while protecting his teen daughter — his only child — during an alleged hate crime.

Michael Tingling, 59, was walking with his 15-year-old daughter, Masharah, in the city’s Rogers Park neighborhood around 2 p.m. Wednesday when he noticed 59-year-old Joseph Firek eyeing the teen girl and making “inappropriate gestures,” DNAinfo Chicago reports.

As Firek approached Masharah, Tingling intervened and the two men began arguing.Firek punched Tingling, who wears a pacemaker, in the chest while making racial epithets, police said according to the Sun-Times.Firek reportedly followed the Tinglings into the alley where Masharah said he called her and her father “n—–s” and told them to “go back to Africa,” according to DNAinfo. After the elder Tingling started having trouble breathing, Masharah said Firek soon started repeating: “I hope he’s OK. I hope I didn’t kill him.”

Read more about this murder at BlackVoices.com 

Is Racism Making Black Women Fat?

March 13th, 2014 - By Charing Ball
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racism making black women fat

Source: Shutterstock

According to new research, Paula Deen’s famous Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding might be laced with a secret ingredient, which might be also helping you to pack on the pounds: racism.

The research, which was conducted by investigators from the Slone Epidemiology Center at Boston University, has found that black women, who frequently experienced racism also had a higher risk of obesity than their less disenfranchised and oppressed counterparts.The findings, which currently appear online in the American Journal of Epidemiology, are based on data from a previous study, which survey 59,000 African-American women under the age of 40, over a course of 12-years about various lifestyle factors including height, weight and experiences of racism.

According to MedicalXpress, participants were asked in 1997 and again in 2009 to rate the frequency of “everyday”racism, including experiences like receiving poorer service in restaurants and stores, and if they had been treated unfairly because of their race on the job, in housing or by the police. Researchers found that women, who rated high frequencies of everyday racism in both 1997 and 2009 were 69 percent more likely to become obese compared to those black women, who rated low levels of racism.

According to statistics from the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health, black women on average have the highest rates of being overweight or obese compared to any other groups in the U.S. About four out of five African American women, or about 80 percent, are overweight or obese. Another recent study suggests one of the reasons behind the obesity disparities in black women is that, on average, must work harder to lose the same amount of weight than their white counterparts (seven pounds to one to be exact).

However this is the first time a study has tied racism to weight. According to research, racism does offer other health disadvantages including stress, depression, high blood pressure, cancer and even the common cold. According to this article in The Root, two recent Emory University studies show a connection between the stress from experiencing racism and high child mortality rates as well as learning disabilities among African-American children born prematurely. And according to this 2009 article in USA Today, the findings for one study, which first appeared in the American Journal of Public Health, shows that fifth-graders, who feel they’ve been mistreated because of their skin color are much more likely to have symptoms of mental disorders, especially depression.

Granted, the white man didn’t tell you to eat the whole dish of that Krispy Kreme bread pudding. However Paula Deen did invent it so…IN all seriousness, it is not unlikely to assume that racism can play a role in your weight. Stress eating is real. And so are food deserts and racial disparities in diagnosis, treatment and follow up of patients. Plus racism effects other aspects of your life including economically and socially, so why not your heath, in particular your weight?

 

‘They Just Need To Get Over It:’ Tamera Mowry Strikes Back At People Who Have Issues With Her Interracial Marriage

February 21st, 2014 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Source: Fox

Source: Fox

In January actress Tamera Mowry-Housley appeared on an episode of “Oprah: Where Are They Now?” alongside her twin sister Tia Mowry-Hardict. In the interview, Tamera opened up about some of the harsh comments people have been sending her on social media sites like Instagram and Twitter regarding her interracial marriage to Fox News corespondent Adam Housley.

“It’s so weird,” she recently told Bethenny Frankel during a TV appearance. “I think maybe because social media is what it is right now. I have a Twitter account and people feel like they can just come to it and say whatever but I’ve learned to love my block button.”

Like her younger brother, Taj Mowry, Tamera also discussed social media users who attack her for having white friends.

“Please, they don’t even know me. They don’t know my friends. Honestly, who cares?”

In addition to ignoring rude commenters, Tamera says she combats the negativity by focusing on the positive.

“I’m just choosing to see the positive side of it. We have more people loving on us than hating on us and we are choosing to focus on that now.”

While she did find a way to cope with it all, “The Real” host admits that it doesn’t take away the sting of the hateful comments she receives.

“My mom is a beautiful black woman and my dad is a very handsome white man,” she explained. “I was actually hurt because my parents had experienced it way back in the day and I was hurt because we as a community have come so far and we fight against it all the time. I was hurt that people still felt that way but the opposite way, you see what I’m saying? So if anything, I was devastated, hurt, and like I said I’m just going to pray and look at the positive.”

Well, at least she’s not allowing it to get the best of her anymore.

Watch Tamera’s interview on the next page.

Racist Or Not? New Study Finds Tons Of Offensive Language Posted In Tweets Every Day

February 19th, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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Social media has made it easier for people to express themselves–and we mean everyone, even racists. And about every nine seconds, someone posts a potentially racist tweet, reports The Huffington Post.

According to a new study from the British think tank Demos, some 10,000 tweets daily use language that some might consider offensive. But if it’s any consolation, further examination may find that many of the tweets aren’t derogatory but use terms that could go in that direction.

Take for example, tweets that use the term “white boy,” which in every instance isn’t racially charged. There are also potentially racist phrases used in a non-derogatory way such as “appropriated” words — “when a hateful word is used by members of the group it’s directed against to describe themselves as well as their friends and other members of the community,” reports HuffPo.

So up to 70 percent of the tweets featuring racist language may not be derogatory. But between 500 and 2,000 tweets  are aimed at an individual and abusive. To us, even one racist tweet it one too many.

Last year, the Floating Sheep project published a map showing areas of the country that sent out the most racist tweets. Students from Humboldt State University examined at 150,000 geotagged racist and homophobic tweets sent between June 2012 and April 2013 for a project called the “Geography of Hate.”  Surprisingly tweets using the “n” word were not only from the South, but the Northeast as well. This study however did not analyze the tweets to see if the word was used in a derogatory manner.

Have you seen many racists tweets?

What It’s Really Like Being A Black Girl During Fashion Week

February 14th, 2014 - By Danielle Kwateng
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Being A Black Girl During Fashion Week

I’m never one for making generalizations or blanket statements that reinforce stereotypes. But there’s a big, ugly secret about the fashion world: it’s plagued by racism.

No secret to you? I imagine it wouldn’t be when Barneys irrationally arrests black men for shopping, Vogue puts maybe one black woman on the cover a year (if that) and Bethann Hardison pleads for more models of color on runways. The writing, for the most part, is on the wall.

But what isn’t talked about are the day-to-day struggles of being a black fashion editor/writer/journalists/blogger. Well, the wait is over though, I’m here to vent.

In the thick of New York Fashion Week, one of my co-workers asked a frank question. Having heard negative sentiments from another black fashion editor earlier in the day she asked, “Have you ever experienced anything racist while reporting on shows?”

I burst. And for two good reasons: First, I’m from Florida. Which at this point is the nation’s armpit of justice. It’s a rare occasion when one can actively hunt down and shoot someone, then walk away a free man. It’s like the Wild West with beaches, T-Pain and Cuban food. But for all of its faults, it has always been clear when someone is treating you crappy because of your melanin.

Now, New York. It’s a whole different beast. A more subtle form of racism masked as elitism. And elitism is a cornerstone of fashion– my second reason for bursting.

Multiply those two factors and it equals a cautious me who analyses every nudge, lost name on the RSVP list and unfriendly glance I regularly get at shows. My slight paranoia is usually justified by a paper thin white girl with a clipboard –who’s probably an intern– ignoring my presence as a professionally employed writer. There was one occasion where I stood in the lobby of an intimate showroom for five solid minutes while all the PR people busily worked on ignoring me, until I finally showed myself the new collection and walked out.

It’s an unstated message of my presence not being wanted or expected in such an exclusive “Girls Club,” and as a result my self-worth is constantly challenged. If you don’t notice my being upset, it’s because I’ve masked it under the gauze of a “snatched” figure, “beat” face and “fierce” heels, but trutfully we all have the same plight. We just learn to step it up and adapt. Fashion just requires more clothing.

I pray that one day there is respect across every field regardless of race. But in the meantime every black girl needs two things to make it in fashion: A high pair of heels and thick skin– wear both proudly.

Danielle Kwateng is the News Writer for StyleBlazer.com.

Tahj Mowry Speaks On People Attacking His Sister, Tamera, About Her Interracial Marriage

January 30th, 2014 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Taj Mowry

A couple of weeks ago, actress Tamera Mowry tearfully confessed to Oprah Winfrey some of the harsh things that Internet users have been saying to her about her interracial marriage to Fox News correspondent Adam Housley. Just days later, Adam also spoke out about some of the disheartening comments.

“The fact that in this day and age, we get attacked for our interracial relationship is beyond sad,” the Fox News Anchor complained. “It is pathetic. Yes I am white. Yes she is half black. Marrying a white man does not erase her color and marrying a woman who is half black does not mean I am blinded. The problem isn’t pigmentation,” said Adam. “The problem is backwards, bigoted thoughts from people who should know better.”

During a recent appearance on “The Wendy Williams Show,” Tamera’s younger brother, Tahj Mowry,also discussed some of the backlash his sister has received and expressed that he has experienced his share of racism, too.

“Yeah, I deal with it too. If I post a picture with all White friends around me, [people will say] I don’t have any Black friends. Someone told me the other day, ‘Embrace your Black side.’ And I was like, ‘You don’t know me. What are you talking about?! I’ve never hung out with you in my life.’

“When people ask me what I am, I say I’m Black. So when people tell me to embrace my ‘Black side,’ it’s like what? I went to a historically black college. I just don’t understand it.”

Speaking of his sisters, he also reiterated that having sisters with children is the best form of birth control.

“Unclehood is great. I always say it’s the best form of birth control, because if they poop or pee I can hand them right back to Tia or Tamera. But I love being an uncle, I love it.”

Watch Tahj’s full interview on the next page.

15 Celebrities Who Are Getting A Little Too Comfortable

January 21st, 2014 - By Meg Butler
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Is racism getting better or worse? Once upon a time, a few n-bombs could ruin your career. Now it seems like recently celebrities are getting comfortable with feeling like they get a pass on casual racism.

Celebrities Making Racist Comments

Image Source: Instagram.com

Madonna

Madonna broke new ground in race relations when she dropped the n-bomb in this Instagram of her son and then refused to apologize like it was OK.

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