Guilty, Guilty, Guilty
The Skinny on COVID
The latest in numbers: 32M total cases & 572K deaths (+408K & +4K from last week)
Johnson & Johnson is back in the vaccine rotation. It’ll come with a warning for women under 50, but especially for those in their 30s.
We can’t figure out why anyone would do this, but the CDC says an increasing number of people are missing their 2nd dose of the vaccine. Last month it was 3.4%. This month, the number is up to 8%.
The US and other countries in Europe are rushing to send vaccine materials to India as their cases surge.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
Joe’s first 100 days ends this week. How y’all think he did?
AOC and Jamaal Bowman, both House Reps. from New York, praise the Biden administration for exceeding progressive expectations. Is he really more liberal than many thought though or have they (AOC and Bowman) drank too much to the Democratic establishment Kool-Aid?
Kamala Harris is expected to tell the UN today that we need to prepare for the next pandemic. Ummm...whet?
Congress, What’s Good?
Well now we know that the Senate can agree on one thing: anti-Asian racism is bad. They voted last week to pass legislation that would establish a Justice Department role dedicated to the issue and that would help bolster state and local reporting of related incidents. The bill will now go back to the House, which will without a doubt push it through. There was only 1 person who opposed the law: Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri. You might remember that he was also very vocal about overturning the election results back in January. If we HAD to say one nice thing about him, it’s that his stance as a white supremacist is very consistent. His dedication to being an asshole is impressive.
Infrastructure, police reform, and gun control continue to be hot topics on the Hill, but it’s still unclear (we really wanna say “unlikely,” but we’ll be optimistic) that the two parties will find common ground. There appears to be some willingness from the GOP specifically on infrastructure and police reform, but as of today, their idea of progress doesn’t appear to be complementary to that of Democrats.
Happenings this week:
Leveraging immigrant-owned businesses to build back better
Reducing gun violence with red flag laws
Criminal Justice Round Up
Former police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty, Guilty, GUILTY on all charges in the death of George Floyd. The jury absolutely made the right decision, but we still have a long road to go for actual “justice.”
Less than 30 minutes before the Chauvin verdict was announced, 16 year-old Ma’Khia Bryant was killed by a police officer in Columbus, OH. As details and reactions to this case emerge, it’s clear why "Protect Black women and girls" still needs to be shouted from the rooftops.
Randall Woodfin, the mayor of Birmingham, AL celebrated 4/20 by pardoning 15K people with minor weed convictions. The pardons will apply to those who were convicted between 1990 and 2020. Mayor Woodfin is also encouraging the State of Alabama to follow his lead and do the same.
Around the Diaspora
The Diaspora is deep. Here are 10 countries that you don’t normally associate with Blackness that have Black people and a Black history of their own. Check it out and learn you something today.
Okra, a Nigerian fintech startup raised $3.5M in its latest funding round. One of their top investors was Accenture.
Wanna give your funds to larger organizations committed to helping St. Vincent as they continue to face volcanic eruptions? This list has got you covered.
Getting to the Money
With the emergence of Clubhouse and copycat versions on other social media platforms, now might be a good time to learn how to leverage audio-based features for your brand before it becomes more popular. Marketing agency Social Deviant is hosting a Deviant Talk on April 27 (yup, that’s tomorrow) to discuss how brands can thrive on audio-based platforms. RSVP deets can be found in the caption.
Got your startup going, but nervous about keeping your employees happy? Consider listening in on “Smart Compensation Strategies for Startups.” Going down on May 5, this panel will help founders employ creative compensation strategies to keep things running smoothly.
If we didn’t before, we all now understand the importance of feeling good about the place we call home. Let DomoINK help you out in that department. Owned by contemporary artist Domonique Brown, DomoINK offers art, home decor, apparel, and accessories that speak to our cultural experiences and empowerment. Check them out online to make your home as personable and as Black as possible.
Culture that Pops
Hip Hop is dealt another loss for the 3rd week in a row: Shock G from the legendary group Digital Underground died last week at the age of 57.
We’re glad to see the love for DMX continue to flow. His loved ones showed up and showed out for his homegoing service over the weekend and the State of New York officially declared December 18 Earl “DMX” Simmons Day.
Black folks took home some trophies at the 2021 Oscars:
Daniel Kaluuya officially swept awards season for his portrayal of Chairman Fred Hampton.
Diddy, Joey Bad A$$, and Tavon Free also won an Oscar for their film Two Distant Strangers.
The 2 Black women that were part of the hair & make up team for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom made history as the first Black women to be nominated in the category and as the first Black women to win.
H.E.R. took home a Best Original Song Oscar for “Fight for You” from Judas and the Black Messiah.