Tell It Tuesday: When All Else Fails, Climb the Statue of Liberty

Patricia Okoumou
By Ta-ning Connai

The Statue of Liberty on the 4th of July...what an ironic time and place to wage a protest against immigration laws, considering what both the monument and holiday stand for. It was the perfect place for Rise and Resist (a New York activist group) to oppose the Trump administration's asinine policy of inhumanely snatching innocent children from their parents.

And as disbelief swept across the globe and we saw children psychologically tortured and literally encaged, it was Patricia Okoumou, a member of Rise and Resist, who put her compassion to the test by making a statement of her own.

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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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Tell It Tuesday: How Football Led Kaepernick to a Higher Calling


Photo illustration by Cristiana Couceiro. Source photograph of Colin Kaepernick: Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/ Getty Images.

By Ta-ning Connai

There’s nothing like a man on a mission, especially a man who didn’t set out to be on one. Colin Kaepernick was getting busy on the turf when the call to activism came knocking. His stand against racial injustice came by way of a kneel and the rest, my friend, is history. 

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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Learning To #TakeAKnee From A Brave High School Student


Kamryn via Awesomely Luvvie
This past weekend the NFL, and supporters of free speech and our right to peacefully protest, served a collective punch to Donald Trump. If you missed the explosion of the #takeaknee movement started by our hero the still unemployed quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who first took a knee to protest police violence towards African Americans, don’t worry, there are photos everywhere online! Stevie Wonder, Pharrell Williams, veterans, and NFL players and coaches totaling the hundreds, either took a knee or locked arms in solidarity against an onslaught of White Supremacist-fueled attacks against players who protest by our President. And of all the truly inspiring photos, there was one that really resonated with me of a high school student named Kamryn. 

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