All Articles Tagged "tennessee"

“Be The Boss” Contest Entry: Tracey Woods

August 31st, 2015 - By jade
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“Be The Boss” Contestant Tracey Woods is a 47-year-old philanthropist from Memphis, Tennessee, who makes it her life’s work to give back to the community in which she lives. Check out her video entry above and for more info on how you can nominate a woman you know to “Be the Boss” and win a makeover courtesy of African Pride, click here.


Contest Entry: Khadijah Neumann

Contest Entry: Ashley Woods

Contest Entry: Angel Toney 

Contest Entry: Eboyne’ Jackson


The Red Lobster Waitress Who Was Slammed By A Racial Slur Receives $10,000 In Donations

October 13th, 2013 - By Ann Brown
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Racist receiptRemember the 19-year-old waitress at a Tennessee Red Lobster who posted a picture to Facebook of a customer’s receipt with a racial slur written on it? Well, it seems her bad experience hit a nerve with a few folks. The waitress, Toni Jenkins, has received over $10,000 in donations since the incident, reports Opposing Views.

It was just last month that Jenkins used Facebook to post a picture of the receipt she was given by a customer, which had the words “none n****r” written in the tip line.  The photo went viral. According to Jenkins, the offending customers were cold to her from the beginning. But Jenkins was suspended without pay for a few days while the matter was being investigated.

“They were extremely rude,” said Jenkins, “but I introduced myself to them and they didn’t respond. When I came to take their order they simply told me they wanted their food and to put everything in a to-go box.”

Now, a man in California set up a YouCaring page called “Tips For Toni” that ended up taking in more than $10,000 in donations.

“Jenkins, a nursing student, says that she bought a car with the money and is grateful for the outpouring of support she’s received, despite the fact that the customer claims he never wrote that on the receipt and many wonder if she wrote it on the receipt herself,” reports Opposing Views.

For now Jenkins is back working at the same Red Lobster and continuing school, Jenkins says she thinks of the entire situation to be a “blessing.” Her case is still under investigation.

Black Waitress At Red Lobster In Tennessee Gets $0 Tip And Called The N-Word On Receipt

September 9th, 2013 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Racist receipt

As if the food service struggle wasn’t already hard enough, imagine going to your place of work, trying to serve your customers, only for them to not leave you a tip, but to also call you the N-word in the check you give them. That’s what happened according to Red Lobster waitress Toni Christina Jenkins, a 19-year-old nursing student, who says a couple came in her restaurant in Franklin, Tennessee and did just that. In an interview with the Daily Mail, Jenkins discussed her awkward encounter with the couple:

“They were extremely rude, but I introduced myself to them and they didn’t respond. When I came to take their orderm[sic] they simply told me they wanted their food and to put everything in a to-go box. I offered them dessert but they told me abruptly that they just wanted the check.’

‘When I went back to the table they had gone and left the receipt and had written the comments.”

After they did so, Jenkins says she showed the receipt to her boss, but then went on to take a picture of the receipt (with the man’s name visible) and posted it on her Facebook page. She did so with this sarcastic caption: “This is what I got as a tip last night…so happy to live in the proud southern states..God Bless America, land of the free and home of the low class racists of Tennessee.”

Since then, the story has obviously gained a lot of momentum, and while her friends, family, and many others have supported Jenkins, some seem to think she faked the comments on the receipt because they believe the handwriting is different from the signature to the insults. I guess folks forgot there were two people at that particular table…But anywho, Jenkins defends her story and says she has no reason to lie, especially not for a tip. “I don’t get tips all the time. I really don’t care cause God is my provider, I don’t worry about tips.”

Because the receipt has been posted online, Jenkins was suspended, but with pay, until folks at the Franklin Red Lobster can figure out the next best plan of action.

Definitely not the type of thing any person just doing their job wants to deal with. But I will say, seeing as the man’s name was very easy to see on the receipt, as well as the last four digits of his credit card number, Jenkins just might encounter another problem (like legal action possibly) with this couple soon enough.

From Chaos To College: A Former Homeless Teen Is On His Way To College…On Scholarship!

May 4th, 2013 - By Drenna Armstrong
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WKRN-TV Facebook

When you read stories like this, you just have to feel good.

Meet Drew Gooch, a Holloway High School senior in Murfreesboro, TN who is on his way to college after very rough beginnings.

As told to the Daily Journal, Gooch says he’s basically been homeless and living on his own since last spring when he moved out of his mother’s home.  He doesn’t go into details but other outlets report that his mother’s live-in boyfriend is a registered sex offender and since he is a minor, Gooch could not stay there. When he moved, he mostly stayed at his sister’s house at night or with friends; however, if he couldn’t stay with them, he slept in his 1997 Toyota Camry behind a hotel.

He attended two school and took online home school classes while working at McDonald’s before ending up at Holloway High in December 2012.  When he went to register, the school principal realized that despite everything that was going on, he mostly maintained an A average.

Once admitted, he took all advanced honors classes.  Holloway is also a school that allows its students to graduate early so at age 17, Gooch is doing just that. By the way, he’s graduating with a 3.9 GPA and is this year’s valedictorian.

He will be attending Middle Tennessee State University in the fall…and won’t have to pay for a thing. He has received a scholarships from The Bootstraps Foundation, Tennessee’s HOPE and Dream scholarship fund and from the local Martin Luther King, Jr scholarship fund.

It should be noted that Gooch is no longer homeless; he now lives in Smyrna, TN.

Gooch says that it was Holloway that chose him, not the other way around. He didn’t have his parents around as positive figures in his life so he used his educational figures as his role models.  Many of his high school teachers met Gooch at school before classes start to help him get up to speed in his advanced honors classes.

So what does Drew Gooch say about his life so far? He knows he’s faced challenges but isn’t letting that stop him and encourages others to be strong:

“I’d like to say I’m mature and rational, realistic. But I’ve been forced to grow up fast. I don’t have the childhood that most of my peers have.

“Take what life gives you. Don’t give up. Don’t sell yourself short. The only person who can decide who you can be is you,” Gooch said. “That’s what I tell myself when I look in the mirror every morning.”

What a story! Drew Gooch is to be commended for his commitment to hard work and dedication to his education. We wish him all the best as he majors in pre-law and minors in business at Middle Tennessee State.

Do Better: Woman Flips Out When She Can’t Return 3 Day Old Hamburger

April 23rd, 2013 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: Photo: Shelby Co. Jail

Source: Photo: Shelby Co. Jail

Somebody go get your cousin. Many of us have had the unpleasant experience of returning an item when it didn’t work out. But in many of these instances items can only be returned with stipulations. These guidelines are even more stringent when it comes to food products.

Apparently, no one ever explained this to 41 year old Chondra London of Memphis, Tennessee.

About a month ago, London went to a local restaurant, Tops Barb. B.Q. and ordered three burgers and two fries. Three days later London came back to the restaurant attempting to receive a refund for one of the uneaten burgers.

But things went left when the restaurant employees told London she wouldn’t be able to return the sandwich. London busted through the restaurant doors on a mission to destroy. Before she left she shoved two cash registers and a credit card machine off a counter.

The damage may seem minor but the repairs or replacement of those machines is around $14,000.

London got away that day. But later, store manager, Frankie Lemay, who was mildly injured during London’s rampage, was able to identify her in a police line up.

London has been charged with vandalism.

We’re not able to embed the video here, but we strongly suggest you check it out here.


Meet The Tennessee Woman Thirsting To Be The First Black Bachelorette

March 1st, 2013 - By madamenoire
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From BlackVoices

A Kentucky woman is vying to become ABC’s first black “Bachelorette.”

Dr. Misee Harris, a 28-year-old pediatric dentist and Tennessee native, is campaigning to become the first black bachelorette on the reality dating show, according to NBC’s The Grio.

In June of last year, Harris was chosen to be a contestant on “The Bachelor” but decided to set her sights higher.

Find out why on

That’s Gonna Burn: Fake Chris Brown Files Lawsuit Claiming Rihanna Gave Him Herpes

October 23rd, 2012 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: Getty Images

File this story under the ratchet stan files, subfile: people who have too much time on their hands. Ridiculous celebrity lawsuits have become far too frequent these days and Chris Brown and Rihanna are unfortunately the latest victims of the craze.

TMZ has obtained the documents, filed in U.S. District Court in Tennessee … in which “Chris Brown” is requesting a restraining order against Rihanna because he fears she will cause him bodily harm.

The suit contains the following (completely untrue) allegations:

— “[Rihanna] gave me herpes and then when I threatened to file a lawsuit against her for not telling me she was infested with genital blisters she began to hit herself in the face and throw herself into walls just as Jim Carey did in the movie ‘Liar, Liar.”

“Then she turned around and blamed me for the matter as a form of punishment.”

— “I woke up with three blisters [on] my p*n*s … this isn’t just a regular case of American herpes, this is a case of Herpes from Barbados, which is most likely lethal.”

The accuser is demanding $10 million … along with “a restraining against Rihanna and her case of genital herpes immediately.”

It must be a lot easier to file a lawsuit than I ever thought because this whole situation is pure foolery, not to mention a waste of legal resources and just showcases what a mockery  people can make of our judicial system. I know people are having a hard time wrapping their heads around this whole Chrianna reunion but c’mon son. This is too much.

If this Breezy imposter is caught he/she could be facing punishment from a judge. Due to the sheer insane nature of this lawsuit, let’s hope that happens.

You Thought Your Dad Was A Deadbeat: Three Men Father Nearly 80 Children

June 15th, 2012 - By Alissa Henry
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Terry Turnage, Richard Colbert, Desmond Hatchett                                                                Source: 

“Deadbeat” isn’t even the right word.

In the great state of Tennessee, three men have provided sperm for 78 children by 46 different women.

How do they pay child support for all of those kids they “fathered”? They don’t.

In a story that just makes black people look bad, Mail Online records the “Deadbeat Dad Roundup:”

  • Desmond Hatchett, 33, of Knoxville, has 30 children by 11 different women. (You remember him, right?) He asked for his child support payments to be reduced – even though his paycheck stretched to just $1.49 per child per month. He holds a county record for his number of children and is currently in jail for aggravated assault. He told “I had four kids in the same year. Twice.” He said he does manage to remember all their names, ages and birth dates. Hatchett first appeared in court on missing child support charges in 2009, when he had 21 children. He said he would not father any more – but has had nine more in the past three years. “I didn’t intend to have this many, it just happened,” he said.
  • Richard M. Colbert from Memphis has 25 children by 18 different women. He claims he does not have to pay for any of them as they are all adults. He added, he feels lucky. “Everybody’s not able to have children.” Another man who shares his name said he regularly gets calls from women and children asking for money.
  • Terry Tyrone Turnage, also of Memphis, has 23 children by 17 women. He recently filed a petition in court to lower his child payments but never turned up for the hearing. One mother said he had been ordered to pay $279 a month – but the most she had ever seen was $9.

Of course, no woman in her right mind would have a kid with a man who already has children in the double digits. Latoya Shields, one of Turnage’s many babies’ mothers, told WREG in Memphis that she was “floored” when the prosecutor told her that Turnage had 20 children. She says that, though she spent eight years with him, she thought he only had four children.

Now, I can’t imagine what the warnings signs would have been, but I have to believe they were there. Her child was his twenty-first child and he had two more kids by other women after that! She had to know something. I think she was living in denial. LaToya said Turnage was supposed to pay her $259 a month, but the most she has seen is $9 as well.

Attorney Warren Campbell told Action News 5 if a person does not pay child support, the state ends up paying and there is no legal way to stop people from having children.

So many questions remain: Why did so many people choose to have unprotected sex with these men in such a short period of time? Are we going to hear about an AIDS epidemic in Tennessee and be able to track it back to these three men? Do Colbert’s 25 adult children know each other? Did the judge laugh in these men’s faces when they asked for a break on child support?

You would think in a day and age where condoms can be had easier than a stick of gum that people wouldn’t still be getting pregnant willy-nilly by men they barely know.

LaToya said all she wants is for her daughter to know her father. I’m sure the other mothers are telling her to get in line.

Alissa Henry is a freelance writer living in Columbus, OH. Follow her on Twitter @AlissaInPink 

More on Madame Noire!

Remove Slavery from the History Books? That’s What Tennessee’s Tea Party Is Asking

January 26th, 2012 - By Bianca Clendenin
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The Tennessee tea party wants to move “incidents” like slavery and genocide out of the history textbooks. Why? Because they are afraid that these “incidents” would tarnish the image of the founding fathers of the U.S.

Yes, you are reading this right. They want to erase history and the fact that our country was founded on both slavery and the wipe out of the native’s population.

On January 11, members of the Tennessee tea party presented this idea to their state legislatures, with five priorities of action to change the state’s history curriculum and supposedly to educate students on “the truth” about America.

Some of the changes presented that they’re hoping for include the following: to reference the slave trade as the “Atlantic Triangular Trade,” to have the first black President to be announced as “Barack Hussein Obama,” (how convenient) and to state that the Constitution created a Republic and not a Democracy.

Salon reports that the tea party also doesn’t want their kids to learn that many of the founding fathers owned slaves.

Fayette County attorney Hal Rounds, the group’s lead spokesman during the news conference, said the group wants to address “an awful lot of made-up criticism about, for instance, the founders intruding on the Indians or having slaves or being hypocrites in one way or another.”

Overall it would push for a more biased and skewed version of history, one that is completely false and untrue. It is bad enough that the educational system doesn’t teach our full American history or that of other individuals of color who helped build this country. Unfortunately, American history equals white history and the occasional lessons of slavery, the civil rights movement, and if you’re lucky (as hell) the Harlem Renaissance. But now people are trying to rub out the little acknowledgement of our struggles and history that we get?

This is a complete white wash of history at its finest. Will they actually get to change the curriculum? Most likely not, but it’s scary to think there are people out there are who are trying very hard to paint a false picture of our country’s history and founding fathers as clean as a whistle for the most random and useless of purposes. Go get a hobby.

Bianca Clendenin is college student and blogger. Follow her on twitter at @thefoxypoet.

More on Madame Noire!

No Voter ID for Black Woman in Tennessee

October 6th, 2011 - By madamenoire
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Dorothy Cooper Denied Voter ID

By Brande Victorian

The year 1960 was the first and only time 96-year-old Dorothy Cooper didn’t vote. A new state law in Tennessee that requires a photo ID in order to register may make 2012 her second.

Cooper, after finding out the requirement, set out to get the necessary ID. Rent receipt, lease, voter registration card, and birth certificate in hand, the Chattanooga resident was denied an ID at the Cherokee Boulevard Driver Service Center because her maiden name, Dorothy Alexander, was the one on her birth certificate. Without a marriage certificate she couldn’t prove that Cooper is indeed her last name.

State Rep. Tommie Brown, D-Chattanooga, told the ChattanoogaTimes Free Press Cooper’s case is an example of how the law “erects barriers” for elderly and poor people who are disproportionately minorities.

“What you do, you suppress the vote,” Brown said. “You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure that out. It makes no sense in these economic times that we are shifting our time and resources to this.”

Tennessee Department of Safety spokeswoman Dalya Qualls acknowledged in an email to the Free Press that things could have been handled better.

“It is department policy that in order to get a photo ID, a citizen must provide documentation that links their name to the document they are using as primary proof of identity,” Qualls wrote. “In this case, since Ms. Cooper’s birth certificate (her primary proof of identity) and voter registration card were two different names, the examiner was unable to provide the free ID.”

Still, “the examiner should have taken extra steps to determine alternative forms of documentation for Ms. Cooper.”

A total of $438,000 was allocated to provide free photo IDs for registered voters who don’t have a qualified ID—a move lawmakers said was necessary to prevent voter fraud. A coalition of organizations announced an effort to repeal the law In Nashville on Tuesday.

“This is a nonpartisan issue. It’s a fair voting issue,” Mary Mancini, Executive Director of Citizen Action, told the Free Press in a phone interview. “It’s all about the legislators seeing that the people of Tennessee don’t want this law.”

After Cooper was denied a photo ID, Charline Kilpatrick, who has been working with residents to get free photo IDs, contacted Hamilton County’s Administrator of Elections Charlotte Mullis-Morgan. She recommended that Cooper vote with an absentee ballot which doesn’t require a photo ID.