Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Black Relationships and Domestic Violence

By Hugh V. Collins and Syreeta L. McNeal, CPA, JD

I know everyone is talking about the alleged domestic assault and battery that occurred between Chris Brown and Rihanna during the weekend of February 7 – 8, 2009. Recently, MTV, US Weekly and People magazine did specials or cover stories regarding the incident. Gossip organizations like Mediatakeout.com and TMZ.com all had their spin on what transpired. Many people are expressing outrage and taking sides. Some people have stated that Rihanna must have done something and deserved to get beat by Chris Brown while others believe that Chris Brown had no right whatsoever to lay a hand on Rihanna regardless of the argument between them. Well, domestic abuse is more common and more people in the U.S. and in the world have witnessed some form of domestic abuse in their lives or among their families. According to the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics report in 2005, one in 320 households were affected by intimate partner violence. Also, they report that female victims are more likely to be victimized by intimates than male victims.

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Being a Black Leader – 25 Year Old CEO

Lawrence Watkins and George Kilpatrick Break down the secrets to success.  Click the image to listen!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Oprah’s Friend Gayle King Angry at Chris Brown

Monique Wright-Williams had always forbidden her three girls from watching hip-hop music videos because of the way they portray women as "hoochies or sex objects," she said.

Black Community Bitter About Chris Brown

Rihanna and Chris Brown in the audience during the 2008 MTV Movie Awards at the Gibson Amphitheatre on June 1, 2008 in Universal City, California.

(Chris Polk/FilmMagic)
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"I don't ever want them to think of themselves as a sex object," she told ABCNews.com.

The music of Chris Brown, though, was different. Marketed as more of a Jonas Brother than a Lil Wayne, Brown won the approval of both mother and daughters. Wright-Williams' oldest daughter, Solange, a 17-year-old college freshman, plastered her room with pictures of the 19-year-old R&B singer and affectionately referred to him as her "husband."


'Saddened' Chris Brown Seeking Counseling

WATCH:Salma Hayek Weds on Valentine?s Day

Has Brown Beaten Rihanna Before?

So when the Syracuse, N.Y., family learned that Brown had been arrested last week for allegedly beating his pop-star girlfriend Rihanna, the news came as a shock. "I'm obviously disappointed," Wright-Williams, a youth services agency director, said. "He was in a good position to serve so many young black children well. Whenever anybody who is in a good position to have a nice impact on my children, and children in general, tumbles and falls in such an important way, it's here we go again." Perhaps. The fall of a teen idol is familiar territory. But the swift and critical public response to Brown's arrest from the Williams family and other members of the black community has come as something of a surprise to some people.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Black Celebrities Give their Two Cents on Chris and Rihanna

Among those who offered their comments on the subject were Hollywood acquaintances of the pair, including actress Gabrielle Union, who was reluctant to say if she thought Chris Brown was guilty.

"Unfortunately, no one knows all the facts yet... " she said to Warner Brothers' TV extra website. The "Cadillac Records" star went on to add: "What I think is great about this unfortunate situation is it can get us talking about violence... violence is never the answer. It's good to get that dialogue started. I wish this wasn't the catalyst for that... it's never good to use violence as a means to an end."


This opinion seemed to be nearly unanimous, Spice Girls star Mel B spoke out for her friend on Monday, saying "For this to happen to a superstar like her is eye-opening. If the rumours are true then Chris should be punished. No woman deserves to be treated like that – and I hope she knows there’s tons of support for her." According to Mel B the pair became friends in 2008 when they were working in neighbouring studios.

Musical act Aliaune Thiam, better known by his stage name Akon, offered his support for the 'Umbrella' star, saying "Keep doing what you're doing baby. Keep things positive!" The pair collaborated on the song "Emergency Room."

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

More Chris Brown and Rihanna Details Emerge

New details are emerging about Chris and Rihanna's domestic dispute that happened during Grammy Night! According to what Rihanna has said in a police report Chris has been abusive before! Read below for the juice via hollyscoop:
According to Police reports, Rihanna claims that Chris has hit her in the past and she referred to it as an ongoing and escalating abusive relationship.
When Rihanna first spoke to LAPD she refused to tell them what started the argument that night. We’ve now learned that it was the result of another woman sending Chris a text message about meeting up later on in the night.
During the argument, according to the police report, she ordered him to drive her home and “faked a call” to someone, saying things like, “He’s dropping me off. Make sure the cops are there,” reports TMZ. This enraged Chris.
He then said something to the effect of “You are really fu**ed up now. I’m going to kill you.” That’s when Chris allegedly began his violent attack with his fists.
At some point during the attack Rihanna took the car keys out of the ignition and threw them outside. He reportedly went outside to look for them, and returned back to the car and allegedly choked her. That’s when she lost consciousness and a witness called 911.
Based on Rihanna’s statement and her injuries Chris will definitely face a felony domestic battery charge, but it’s unclear at this time whether or not that’s the only charge he’ll get because evidence that he made criminal threats against Rihanna is kind of thin.

Damn hate to say I told ya so but damn I TOLD YA'LL ASSES he had to have hit her before for it to escalate to this! I blame publicity for trying to make these kids seem perfect! SHIT happens! I'm also hearing Chris' music is being yanked from airwaves due to his recent legal issues! Damn just when we thought no one could f*ck up their career more than R.Kelly or Kobe Bryant, Chris comes along and does this :-(

posted by Lady Drama @ 1:44 PM 0 comments

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Good Love Gone Bad: Chris Brown Prosecution to be Assisted by Rihanna

R&B star Rihanna is cooperating with investigators building a domestic violence case against her boyfriend, the singer Chris Brown, a police source said Monday.
The source said the 20-year-old performer, whose full name is Robyn Rihanna Fenty, was providing "ongoing" cooperation to detectives who booked Brown on Sunday on suspicion of making criminal threats against her.

An early morning altercation with Brown after a pre-Grammy Awards party left Rihanna with bruises and a scratch on her face, according to police sources. She was treated at a "major medical facility," a police source said.
Brown, 19, has a double-platinum record and dance moves often compared to Michael Jackson's. He fled before officers arrived, police said.
He remained free on $50,000 bail, but neither he nor his attorney would speak about allegations that rocked the Grammys ceremony. Brown and Rihanna were both nominated; neither attended the ceremony.

The fight occurred after midnight on a quiet block in Hancock Park, where Brown had stopped a rented Lamborghini he was driving. According to police, several people saw or heard a loud, violent confrontation. The luxury car was impounded because the alleged assault may have begun in the vehicle, a police source said.


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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Big Time College Recruit Shot and Killed

Billey Joe Johnson Sr. opens the driver’s-side door of his dead son’s Silverado and begins to examine some of the leftover splatter. It clings to the dashboard, leeches out of air conditioning vents. Some of it even found a resting place on the truck’s exterior.

“There goes a hunk of meat right there,” the father said, pointing to a nickel-sized fragment of his son’s brain. “How’d it get over here?”

In the back seat, a geometry book rests next to camouflage clothing and empty boxes of buckshot. Billey Joe Johnson Jr. often woke up at 4 a.m. to hunt before heading to George County High School, where everyone knew him as the football star who would escape crushing rural poverty by running from it.

Piles of recruiting letters litter the back seat, the remnants of life as one of the most sought-after running backs in the Class of 2010. Alabama wanted Billey Joe. So did Notre Dame. And dozens of other schools. He was ready to commit to Auburn. By many accounts Billey Joe was a popular, big-dreaming, clean-living kid. So it’s no wonder his father stands in the yard next to a single-wide trailer, trying to play forensic expert. Searching – like many in this rural community – for answers about who shot his son.

PhotoSheriff’s incident reports and radio reports.

Local authorities stopped Billey Joe for a traffic violation on the morning of Dec. 8, and they say the truck is simply the site of a terrible tragedy. But to the elder Johnson, it’s a crime scene.

Nearly two months later, only one fact is certain: Instead of running out of George County as a football hero, Billey Joe was buried beneath it at the age of 17.

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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Black Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin is Youngest Ever to Win Super Bowl

Never ever pretty. Never perfect.

That's head coach Mike Tomlin's mantra for the Pittsburgh Steelers. But after Sunday night's come-from-behind 27-23 victory against the Arizona Cardinals in the Super Bowl, Tomlin's found something pretty to add to the team's trophy case.

A record-breaking sixth Lombardi Trophy.

ROONEY RULE: Goodell stops short of calling for its end

THE HUDDLE: Tomlin was prepared to take intentional safety

It didn't come easy. The Steelers surrendered a 20-7 fourth-quarter lead with a safety and two touchdowns by Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald. But Tomlin calmly rallied his troops for a championship-winning drive in the final minute.

"We have a team that doesn't blink in the face of adversity," Tomlin said. "It's never going to be pretty or perfect."

Tomlin kept his emotions in check when Fitzgerald, in a very un-Steelers-like way, scored a spectacular 64-yard touchdown with 2:37 left to give the Cardinals a 23-20 lead.

"I actually was thinking that if they were going to score, that's how you want them to — extremely quickly," Tomlin said.


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Sunday, February 1, 2009

Jesse Jackson Writes "Try 1 percent solution for student loans" in Chicago Sun Times

Try 1 percent solution for student loans

The debate on the recovery has begun in earnest. The $825 billion plan introduced in the House is a good beginning. It makes a down payment on investments vital to our future -- in new energy, health-care efficiency, education. It provides assistance for those hit hardest by the crisis. It provides a tax break for the vast majority of Americans.

Republican leaders have reacted in partisan rather than patriotic form. Their objections are simply wrongheaded. House Minority Leader John Boehner says the plan is too large, spends too much and has too few tax breaks for business. In fact, the reverse is true. If anything, given the accelerating downturn, the plan is too small and contains too many business tax breaks that are notoriously ineffective at producing jobs.

To help get the economy moving, Congress would be well advised to pass -- either as part of the recovery plan or separately -- a bold initiative to help make college and advanced training affordable. I'd suggest a simple proposition: Let's make college loans available to students on the same terms that the banks receive.

Banks now borrow money at about 1 percent, even as the Treasury and Federal Reserve pour in literally trillions in equity, loan guarantees, credit swaps and the like to keep them from going belly up. Over the last few decades, students have gone from paying for college with two-thirds grants and one-third loans to the reverse, with most racking up tens of thousands of dollars in debt to stay in school. They are forced to borrow -- even on the subsidized loans -- at rates of 4 percent to 5 percent. When those limited funds are exhausted, they are forced into a private market, where interest rates are even higher, and sometimes end up relying on credit card debt, with rates more than 20 percent.

With the recession spreading, students are struggling to cobble together the funds to stay in school. Parents' contributions get slashed when they lose their jobs. Grant aid doesn't make up the difference. The Economic Recovery Plan would increase the maximum Pell grant by $500, but that doesn't make a dent.

There is real perversity here. General Motors is offering car loans at zero percent while students seeking to get an education must pay 5 percent to 6 percent. Students are essentially subsidizing the banks that drove us into this ditch, even as those banks continue to pay multimillion-dollar bonuses to the very leaders who are responsible.

Thus far, the Federal Reserve and the Treasury keep spraying the leaves and ignoring the roots. They keep bailing out the captain's quarters while ignoring the hole at the bottom of the boat.

We should go another way. Michelle Obama has noted the harsh burdens that students are faced with. "Salaries don't keep up with the cost of paying off the debt, so you're in your 40s, still paying off your debt at a time when you have to save for your kids." She and Barack were still paying off their loans in their 40s, until his best-selling books got them out of the hole. And they were successful graduates of Harvard Law School.

Now the situation is much worse. Talented students are forced to drop out. Schools without large endowments are making draconian cuts and raising tuitions.

Young people are the nation's most valuable asset; their education is essential to our future. Their potential should not be snuffed out, their dreams shattered because of an economic crisis they didn't cause and cannot avoid. We shouldn't ask them to subsidize the very banks that caused the mess. It's time for a 1 percent student loan program.