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B. Simone Is The Marketing Genius The Internet Didn’t Know It Needed

Plus 5 more headlines you missed this week!

Culture & Entertainment

Earlier this week, B. Simone had the internet in shambles when she seemingly confirmed a relationship with DaBaby after months of flirtatious online banter between the two. It wasn't until later when the duo revealed that the image was from a recently released short film that has since amassed more than 2 million views in only 24 hours.

B. Simone's latest move is only one example of the multihyphenate mogul's social media magic, and our good sis just dropped a book that gives us the method behind her marketing genius.

In Baby Girl Manifest The Life You Want, which has already sold 10,000 copies in two days, we see a compilation of the influencer's personal diary entries from 2014-2017 that will inspire you to stop self-doubt in its tracks and manifest the life that you want. She wrote on Instagram:

"You ladies (and gentlemen) that receive this book will embark on a new journey and it will help you start your road to manifesting the life you've always wanted 💕 I put my heart into this book and I know it's going to help so many people all over the world! I have personal diary entries in the book from my actual diary, and it's 4 chapters of information!!! MANIFEST YOUR FINANCES, MANIFEST AFTER THE SUCCESS, MANIFEST YOUR CIRCLE and MANIFEST AFTER THE BREAKUP!!!! Change your mind and change your life! It starts with your mind! I'm the MANIFEST QUEEN anything I want, I GET! Order my book now and start manifesting the life you desire."

For more news that's popping in the media this week, scroll below:

Details On Lauren London & Nick Cannon’s Touching Tributes To Nipsey Hussle On The One-Year Anniversary Of His Death

It's been one year since Nipsey Hussle was senselessly murdered outside of his store in South L.A., and 365 days later, his longtime partner Lauren London is still making sure that the marathon continues. In a touching Instagram post, Lauren wrote:

"Time is deceptive. It's been a year since you transitioned. The pain is as heavy today as it was a year ago. God knows I would give anything to see you again. I didn't think I was going to survive a second of any of this. Prayers have kept me together. The kids keep me going and Gods Grace and Mercy have carried me this far. As today makes a year, I stand strong because of you. Because I know you wouldn't have it any other way. Because I recall every late night conversation we had about resilience and fear. Because you were my greatest teacher and because you are still with us, in spirit."

Among other celebrities who showed love for the fallen legend was Nick Cannon, who released the trailer for Strong Enemies: The Untold Case of Dr. Sebi, keeping a promise that he made to the late-rapper shortly after his death. Nipsey, who was studying Dr. Sebi's federal court case, died before he was able to release his research, a cause that Nick has now made his mission. Last year, the Wild N' Out creator wrote on Instagram:

"Where you left off, we gonna carry one! It's a MARATHON, so I'm picking up the baton! Because they can't kill us all. Now, your message is my message! Your work is my work! I know you still rocking with us and your voice will never be silenced because to be absent from the body is to be present with the Most High!"

Kenya Moore Says She Wasn’t Allowed To Talk To Marc Daly’s Parents

Instagram

Since tying the knot in 2017, Kenya Moore and Marc Daly's relationship has been nothing short of a rollercoaster, and recently, the Real Housewives of Atlanta star revealed that their split was one that had been months in the making. In a recent episode of RHOA, Kenya shared that communication was a major issue in their relationship, so much so, that she wasn't even allowed to speak to his parents:

"I'm not allowed to speak to his mother or father. If you don't know everything about that person's life, you're not being let in."
"One of my issues with him is not being able to have a conversation without yelling or anger or crossing lines. I know it's not me and I know how hard I've fought for this marriage. I stopped caring about my feelings and all I was trying to be was who he wanted me to be and work through everything as best I could to keep my family together."

Big Sister Shaves Head & Eyebrows In Support Of Her Little Sister’s Cancer Battle & I’m Not Crying, You Are

Every now and then you come across something on the internet that hits you right in the heart and this viral video of a girl shaving her head in support of little sister will have your eyes sweating uncontrollably.

In a video that has now gained the attention of stars like Jada Pinkett Smith and Janet Jackson, we see Cami remind her sister that hair doesn't make you beautiful and I'm not crying, you are.

While we're unsure of the details surrounding the video, we know that there are fewer things in this world sweeter than a sister's love. Cami captioned the video:

"Can't say everything that's been going on has been easy, it's been hard, it hurts. But this isn't for any of you or for me, this is for you Gaby. I LOVE YOU with every bone in my body. U fight…& you do it d*** well. Hair does not make you and even bald you still manage to be the prettiest sister..I love you so so so so much boot boot & every battle you go through, I promise to go through it with you [because] that's what... sisters do."

The #DontRushChallenge Epitomizes Black Excellence At Its Finest

I'm pretty sure that the internet was made for Black people and the #DontRushChallenge is proof that our creativity knows no limits. From doctors, nurses, and dads to those stuck at home, creatives from all over the world showed out for this viral Tik Tok trend that has given us our entire lives.

There Is A Free Virtual Mental Health Conference To Help You Cope With COVID-19 & This xoMan Is At The Helm

Home is where the heart is, but being stuck there for months at a time can be taxing. Luckily, this xoMan curated a free AF, Black AF online mental health conference that will help you get your mental health all the way together. Created by psychotherapist and mental health advocate, Rwenshaun Miller, the conference will be live on Friday from 3 to 6:30 PM EST and will feature commentary from founder of Therapy For Black Girls, Dr. Joy Harden Bradford.

Register online at Rwenshaun.com/centered.

Featured image by Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock.com

ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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Featured image by Shutterstock

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