Iowa and Gayle Chaos
Finding Clarity in this Gayle King Issue
Y’all heard about Gayle King, right? While interviewing Lisa Leslie, she asked the WNBA legend questions about Kobe Bryant’s 2003 sexual assault case and if it should be part of his legacy. Some felt she was simply doing her job as a thorough journalist getting to the bottom of a core issue. Many, however, attacked King as they felt it was disrespectful to Kobe’s family. Another set of angry viewers saw this as yet another opportunity for her and BFF Oprah to tear down successful Black men, while staying mum on infamous white predators. In an apology, Gayle placed blame on the network, who she says made a horrible edit of her interview to share online. Still, that did not stop the vitriol and death threats from pouring in.
It’s been difficult to see us, at one point so united in celebrating Kobe’s life, turn a chunk of that unity against a Black woman. Not because we’re debating whether she was right or wrong, but because it shows how our power can be used to both uplift and condemn in tangible ways.
To make sense of it all, we’ve found it beneficial to put the full picture in perspective. This reminder about why these accusations are historically so painful for our community helped. So did this one about the possibility of strongly disagreeing without disrespecting one another (especially our women). Hopefully, we can keep using our collective weight to shine light on the positive and handle conflicts that arise in a more productive way moving forward. Are we asking for too much??
We Hate to See It
As you know by now, the Senate acquitted Donald Trump in the impeachment trial, giving cause for the president to stunt on all his haters. Perhaps there was no better opportunity for that than the State of the Union address this past Thursday. In the speech, he embellished the facts (aka lied) a lot, honored his racist pal, and ultimately set up the foundation for his reelection bid. Oh and he also ended the week by firing his fake friends. You couldn't have thought him being impeached would make him any less over the top. No…definitely not.
Congress, What’s Good?
The Republican Senate (except for Mitt Romney, of course) will probably be patting themselves on the back for an acquittal well done all week because there aren’t any meetings or hearings posted for them over the next 5 days.
Meanwhile, the House is working to protect women’s reproductive rights, eliminate bias from AI technology employed by financial services, and more.
The Iowa caucuses were last week and after days of counting and recounting, the state announced that Pete Buttigieg won the most electoral votes, despite Bernie winning the popular vote. Results aside, we’re just trying to figure out if we need to throw the whole state or the whole caucus process away.
Donald Trump is rooting for everybody Black.
The Democrats held their February debate in New Hampshire on Friday. Many tried, but only one candidate came out on top.
Who knew Michael Bennet was still in the race? Anybody?
Around the Diaspora
Haiti’s president feels confident that he can negotiate peace, progress, and power-sharing with his political adversaries.
Kenya’s president takes a stand for Africa, saying that the continent doesn’t have to (and will not be) choosing between the US & China. The two global superpowers are currently in a race to establish trade agreements across the Motherland.
In an effort to curb the human-wildlife conflict, Botswana has decided to auction off shooting permits for the controlled hunting of elephants. What happened to saving them from extinction?
Culture that Pops
Out of the 5 Black nominees at this year’s Oscars, only one team took home the gold.
Jay-Z done got the NFL to commit $100M to criminal justice reform.
J.C. Watts, a former pro football player and Republican congressman just launched the nation’s first Black news channel. This either has the opportunity to be really good...or really Fox News-ish.