Meet the Police Officer Who Blew Up on Instagram Doing Good in His Community

Officer Norman and kids in his Little Rock community
By Ta-ning Connai 

Officer Thomas Norman is clearly cut from a different cloth. Through his strategy for community policing (a mix of relatability, love, compassion and respect), he is changing the way many of us see law enforcement. He was doing good deeds behind the scenes in his hometown of Arkansas when rapper and community activist Killer Mike took notice. Mike took him on CNN as a prime example of what police can do to assist and engage (not taunt and terrorize) people of color. But it was west coast rapper, The Game and his son Harlem, who brought Tommy to rock star status in 2016. On the heels of the murders of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, The Game found it important to let people know that there was an officer out there making a tremendous effort to restore hope and mend the wounds that bad cops have caused. So he and his son created a GoFundMe page for people to support Norman’s outreach. From Hollywood celebrities to everyday folks, the blessings are STILL pouring in! Officer Norman’s IG page- which has over 1 million followers- has a fabulous reality show vibe; it's heartwarming, hilarious and keeps you coming back. Even the neighborhood regulars have a bunch of fans following their every move. But hey, don't take my word for it, just see it for yourself and I'm sure these Best Officer Norman Moments will make your heart just melt!

This Valedictorian's Principal Wouldn't Let Him Give an Acceptance Speech, but the Mayor Did

Jaisaan Lovett
By Erickka Sy Savané

You work harder than you've ever worked in your young life, staying home to study while your friends are out doing things that kids do, and it pays off. You become the first African American valedictorian of your high school school and it's time to give an acceptance speech. Because you know it's all about that speech, thanking those who helped make it happen, dropping those gems...only this part doesn't happen because of run-ins that you've had with the principal in the past. So you're barred from speaking at graduation. I wish this were a made-up story, but it happened to Jaisann Lovett of University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men in Rochester, New York. While his principal- Joseph Munno, who didn't give Jaisann or his family a reason for not allowing him to speak- tried to get the last word, it was Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren who stepped in and gave Jaisaan an opportunity to have his big moment...and luckily we get to see it!

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Looking at FOX’s History, Their Racist Viewpoints Started Before Fox News

Fox News commentator Rachel Campos-Duffy 
By Brenda Alexander

White Hollywood is apparently enraged with their employer, 21st Century FOX, over FOX News coverage of #45’s controversial border policies, which over the past few weeks have held immigrant children separated from their families and detained in unfamiliar (and horrible) territory. If you’re not familiar with 21st Century FOX as a company, it is Rupert Murdoch’s parent company of all FOX run content, including 20th Century FOX, FOX Sports, FOX Television Stations and of course FOX News - home to FOX & Friends and any other right-wing panel style show in which white journalists give their take on politics, social issues and entertainment that skews towards prejudice and racist commentary on any minority group. Not that FOX News has never done this before, they are known for it; but, I guess seeing images and videos of young children held in monstrous conditions was too much for the world, and white society, to take in. 

Meet Naturally Glam Anti-Street Harassment Duo: Akira & Nalo

Akira & Nalo
By Jashima Wadehra

Naturally Glam Bronx high school students, Akira Johnson and Nalo Turner attended the annual STOP STREET HARASSMENT rally in New York to speak out against harassment of individuals in the LGBTQIA (African American and East Asian) communities. These naturally glam teens completely fed our soul with their warmth, honesty and passion for making a difference. Keep reading to find out what inspires these two! WARNING: Heartfelt truths may cause tears.

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From Hip Hop Artist to Activist: The Changing Face of Meek Mill

Meek Mill today & from a 2007 mug shot
By Brenda Alexander

When the #FreeMeekMill campaign began, I was unbothered and uninterested. Considering the protests took place near my job, I was irritated at the inconvenience it would cause with traveling to and from work. Furthermore, I was perplexed as to why the entire city of Philly was in an uproar over his arrest and imprisonment. Philadelphia 76ers owner, Michael G. Rubin became a public champion and Meek’s song was even used as an introduction to the Eagle’s game during this year’s Super Bowl. Not being a huge fan of today’s hip hop, I knew very little of 31 year-old Meek Mill.

3 Reasons I Can't Stand With Mo'Nique


Mo'Nique & Husband Sidney
By Brenda Alexander

It’s sad when true talent is reduced to a social media gif, meme and trending topic. There’s no denying that Mo’Nique is phenomenal. After years as a comedian, she won an Oscar for her ability to transcend the idea that comics couldn’t handle dramatic roles for her work in Precious. Almost Christmas would have been bland without her. I just knew it would be Mo’Nique’s comeback from years of her negating rumors that she was “difficult to work with” and the assumption that she was blackballed for not playing the game of Hollywood chess. But alas, she remains a pawn in this industry. Her desire to prove she’s right in her stance against the inequalities in the entertainment business has forced her to degrade others along the way. I stand with Mo’Nique in her cry for fair pay and opportunities for blacks. What I don’t stand with is despite signs pointing to the fact that Mo’Nique’s current lack of success is a repercussion of her reputation, cognitive dissonance tells her otherwise. Here are the top three reasons why I cannot support Mo’Niques continued tirade.

Finding A Way In Trump's America Through MLK's ‘Drum Major Instinct’



Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. 
By Erickka Sy Savané via Essence.com

When it became official that the Electoral College had voted for Donald Trump my stomach dropped. And it's been dropping every day since. Unfortunately, no amount of protest has changed that. But during times like this, it’s the voices of the great leaders who have come before us that speak the loudest. In this case, Dr. Martin Luther King’s sermon, ‘The Drum Major Instinct’ speaks like a light in a dark tunnel.

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Online Petitions Matter: Here's 5 Examples That Made A Difference

Photo of Sharanda Jones via CNN
 By Nikki Igbo

If you’ve ever signed an online petition then you probably receive at least two invitations a week to sign another one to stop, combat, protest, prevent, derail, support, fund, defund, rescue, remove, rebuild, renew and/or cancel one thing or another. You’ve also most likely forwarded an online petition. You may have even created an online petition. Why? Because we’re living in the age of internet activism, you’re woke, and woke people in the age of internet activism have to do SOMETHING. In the midst of all of this digital signing, you’ve probably wondered if these online petitions actually make a difference. The answer is yes. In fact, here are five examples of countless online petitions that have made a significant impact and will inspire you to keep signing, forwarding and creating.

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Honey on the Blade: The Artivism of Liza Jessie Peterson

Liza Jessie Peterson by Yoshinori Hashimoto
By Sharon Pendana 

Liza Jessie Peterson is an "artivist," her art and her activism conjoined. With a deep sense of justice, it is her Libran calling to balance its scales. "I’m an artist, but my advocacy is channeled through my art," she says. "Everything I write about, everything I perform is through that lens." Her decades-long entrenchment in the carceral system spans from making the trek upstate from her Brooklyn home to visit her jailed former lover to teaching incarcerated youths at New York City's notorious Rikers Island Correctional Facility.

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Women Are Using Their Bodies as Canvases to Reclaim Self and Protest Social Injustice


The Awakenings Project by Marissa Southards
By Sharee Silerio

When Marissa Southards picked up a camera three years ago, she was simply trying something new. One day, her husband Brian, a pencil artist, brought a professional-level camera home so he could work in a different medium.

Active in St. Louis protests and the Black Lives Matter movement, she took the camera into the streets to capture what was going on.

“You see an image, and it angers you, or it makes you mad. Or it inspires you. We are now equipped with the ability to tell our own story, because we have cameras now. One of the best quotes that I have ever heard was ‘The revolution will not be televised.’ And it won't be. We're telling our own story and we're doing it through pictures.”

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7 Women Giving Us #ActivismGoals

Tamika D. Mallory speaking at the Women's March on Washington
There is nothing sexier than impacting positive change. And when we say sexy, we're talking about fearlessly walking in your purpose in such a way that everyone can't help but take notice of and appreciate how truly badass you are. We're talking #humanitygoals, #growuptobelikeyou, #pleaseupdatehistorybooks sexy. And for this reason, it's important to pay homage to women currently living and working among us who are taking social activism to the next level, inspiring the rest of us to ask ourselves,  'What am I doing to bring about change?' While there are countless powerful sistah's out there leading in communities across the country, we decided to highlight seven women giving us #activismgoals!

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