X Gave It To Us
The Skinny on COVID
The latest in numbers: 31M total cases & 562K deaths (+476K & +7K from last week)
Michigan is now the country’s epicenter, primarily driven by the spread of the UK variant across the state. In spite of this, Governor Gretchen Whitmer refuses to issue new mandates.
More Black folks are open to getting the vaccine. Are you signing up to get yours?
More & more businesses and institutions are requiring proof of vaccination. Is this a sign of overreach?
If the Pfizer vaccine and the South Africa variant went head to head, an Israeli study says Pfizer might don’t make it.
Keeping Up with Biden & Harris
Biden signed executive orders targeting gun violence on Thursday. The orders will invest $5B in community violence intervention, require registration for people who want to convert pistols into rifles, require serial numbers on 3D printed guns, and more. The moves address a small part of the gun problem in the US, but they do show Biden’s commitment to addressing the issue within his powers as POTUS.
Don’t get your hopes up on a 4th stimmy. You may have heard that some lawmakers are pushing for more direct payments, but it looks like it’s unlikely...for now.
Joe Biden isn’t doing enough to address the inequality brought on by climate change, activists say.
Congress, What’s Good?
Congress is back in Washington to bicker amongst themselves and talk more about what they not gone do. Major topics this week will probably be Biden’s $2T infrastructure bill, immigration, and perhaps background checks for gun purchases. All things that need to be addressed, but all things the two parties are unable to agree on.
For those of y’all who are wondering why Democrats aren’t just bulldozing their way through some of these issues like the GOP did, remember the filibuster, which requires 60 votes in the Senate in order to pass some forms of legislation. Closeted Republican Joe Manchin has already made it clear that if we can count on him for anything, it won’t be to overturn the filibuster. Manchin is dedicated to doing absolutely nothing to help his fellow Democrats pass meaningful legislation. Tell your friends to tell they cousins from West Virginia that we need to replace him with an actual Democratic Senator in 2024. Dude is a waste.
On their agenda this week:
Revisiting the topic of statehood for Washington, DC
Addressing the root causes of migration from Central America
Criminal Justice Round Up
Maryland’s General Assembly officially abolishes life without parole sentencing for juveniles. The move overturns two vetoes from the state’s governor.
“How is BLM spending its money?” seems to be a never-ending question. The head of the org’s NY chapter is the latest to ask after it was revealed that co-founder Patrisse Cullors recently purchased a $1.4M home outside of Calabasas while owning 3 other homes in LA and Georgia.
The “Blue Wall of Silence”, normally impenetrable during trials or investigation into police misconduct, is crumbling for Derek Chauvin. Why are other police officers so ready to speak out against Chauvin’s handling of Geroge Floyd? Is this a sign of changing times?
Around the Diaspora
16K people living in the northern part of St. Vincent were forced to evacuate from their homes after the island’s only active volcano erupted for the first time in more than 40 years. With ash blanketing the entire country (and neighboring islands), Vincentians potentially face weeks more of activity. If you are able to help, check out this Twitter thread with ways to assist from wherever you are.
2 years after the widespread protests against dictator Omar Bashir, women in Sudan are now protesting for equal rights. We could’ve sworn the interim governing body said they were going to address discriminatory laws back in 2019, but alas here we are today.
Of the 39 countries the UK has banned from coming in due to COVID-19, nearly half of them are on the African continent. Given the fact that many African nations have fared better than western nations in the pandemic, people are looking for an explanation why. Though we want to hear them say it, we all know what the reasoning is...right?
Getting to the Money
Are you an advertising professional who lost work due to the pandemic? Facebook wants to help you learn new digital skills to make yourself more marketable in your current role or prepare for a career change. Join their private RISE - North America group to take advantage of the free resources uniquely created for you & your evolving industry.
Got plans on Friday, April 23? If you even have an hour of free time, consider attending the MOBE Symposium, a virtual conference featuring Black leaders discussing the latest industry trends in marketing, entertainment and business. Tap in for a few minutes (or hours), soak up some free game, and network with other professionals. It’s an easy call.
For a Black-owned site that sells only Black-owned beauty brands, look no further than AMP Beauty. Ladies & gents alike can go to them for all of their skin, hair, bath, and personal care needs. Thank us later.
Culture that Pops
We all wanted DMX to recover, but it’s now clear that his mission here was accomplished. Thankfully, he leaves a legacy of strength and inspiration for us to forever look back on. Let’s continue to lift his loved ones up and also walk remembering that none of us are defined by their personal struggles.
LA County is working to return Bruce’s Beach, a desirable piece of beachfront property in Los Angeles, to the descendants of a Black couple who were harassed by the Klan and then unfairly stripped of the land nearly 100 years ago. Racists is mad. Let us rejoice.
Akon secured land to build a small cryptocurrency-based city in Uganda. Though he faces questions as to whether Ugandans will be able to afford services in the city, he plans to push forward and complete development by 2036.