Former first lady Michelle Obama, left, and former President Barack Obama arrive to cast their ballots at an early voting site Monday, Oct. 17, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

A tale of two murders

I’ve been following the tragic story of Shanquella Robinson, a 25-year-old woman who died mysteriously during a trip to Mexico with her friends. I saw the video of her being beaten up by a so-called friend. (You can read all the details about this story on Page 4).

This story is heartbreaking, especially for her family in desperate need of answers. I’m a news junkie so I watched CNN and MSNBC (sorry, I can’t do Fox for more than 3 minutes) waiting on more on this story. It didn’t come.

What did come was 17 stories on four college students killed in Idaho. Don’t get me wrong, all murders are tragic, but why does one warrant a story, with reporters, interviews, analysts every hour and the other can’t even get a kicker slot (that’s those 15 second stories they run at the end of the newscast). One guess. Ding, ding, ding. Because the victims in the Idaho story are white and Shanquella is Black.

If we’re always hearing “All lives matter,” why can’t Shanquella’s family get as much media coverage as those Idaho college students? As a member of the media, and former employee of the mainstream media, I don’t believe someone sits in an office saying, “Let’s cover this story because the victims are white and ignore the other because they’re black.”

But let’s be realistic, implicit bias is ALWAYS at work. Our stories aren’t that big of a deal, until we MAKE them a big deal. And sometimes that’s up to you, the reader/viewer. When you see bias, call it out. That’s the only way we can ever hope for change.

Michelle Obama says U.S. ‘wasn’t ready’ for her natural hair

Former First Lady, Michelle Obama, opted to straighten her natural hair rather than wear it in braids so that the United States could acclimate to “having a Black family in the White House.” During a recent book event at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC., the forever First Lady who now wears her hair in braids, said she wanted to stay out of the spotlight so that her husband, former President Barack Obama, could focus on his legislative objectives and that meant keeping her hair straight. That saddens me but is indicative of the pressure placed on Black women to adhere to white beauty standards by straightening their hair; rather than having braids, an afro, or dreads. I can’t wait for the day that Black women can….just be.

Kelly Rowland defends Chris Brown

Kelly Rowland doesn’t tend to be a very divisive or controversial figure in pop music. But when she found herself in the awkward position of having to accept the Favorite Male R&B Artist trophy on behalf of the absent Chris Brown at the recent American Music Awards ceremony, she wound up confronting the protesting audience.

Chris was originally scheduled to perform a Michael Jackson tribute, but that was unexpectedly called off with no explanation and he skipped the show altogether. When audience members began booing after she announced that Chris had won Favorite Male R&B Artist, Kelly offered this defense: “Excuse me — chill out,” Rowland scolded, sternly pointing a finger at the rowdy crowd.

She then continued: “But I wanted to tell Chris, thank you so much for making great R&B music. And I want to tell him thank you for being an incredible performer. I’ll take this award, bring it to you. I love you. Congratulations. And congratulations to all the nominees in this category.”

Let me be clear, I don’t condone anything Chris did in his past, but we are not our worst mistake. This has not been a pattern for Chris. Rihanna has forgiven him (and is off living her best life). At what point do we stop punishing someone for something they did in their youth? Head over to our social media page and let’s talk about it.