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LisaRaye Talks Cougars, Playboy And Lil' Kim

LisaRaye McCoy is a grown-ass woman. 42 to be exact. With nearly 15 years in the entertainment industry and her own reality show, The Real McCoy doing big numbers, it's safe to say LisaRaye is good for business. VIBE caught up with the newly single mother for some real talk. —Tracy Garraud

VIBE: You mentioned in interviews that the point of your show is to clear the air about yourself. What rumors would you like to dispel?

LisaRaye: There’s some from different interviews, some that you don’t even know about yet and there’s some that are going to stay private. There’s a yin and yang to having such a public life.

What’s the craziest rumor you’ve heard of yourself?
I think they’re all kind of crazy. I don’t take any of them seriously for them to make me or break me.

There are whispers out there that you have a pretty bad temper.
I’ve never heard that one. But don’t we all? I’ll tell you one thing—I’m a woman who holds her own, but if you want to bring it, you can sho' get it.

Another rumor is that you’re dating Al Sharpton. Is he on your show?
Yes, he is. I don’t think it’s unique that he would come to my rescue [after what happened with my ex-husband]. I’ve known him for ten years. I was one of the first celebrities that helped him with his first rally. When people start saying ‘Is it this guy? Is that guy?’… well how many guys are you going to try and put me with it?

So you’re confirming you and Al have never been romantic?
Yeah. If and when I’m with somebody, I’m not trying to hide it. I would be very proud of it. If you “catch” me holding hands with someone, you ain't caught nothing because I wanted you to see that.

How do you feel about dating younger men?
I don’t feel anything. I’m not a tiger or a cougar. That’s not my thing. I want someone that’s had a chance of living life. I’m definitely a worldly woman, a former first lady. I don’t want any more kids.

"I took [my daughter] to the [Players Club] set with me because I wanted her to know that this is a movie. And one day you might want to go to a strip club yourself"

What’s the youngest you’ll go?
I’m not doing 20 anything. I’m not doing…35… I don’t know. I just want him to be experienced enough to show me something, because I can definitely show him something. I’ve been around the block and around the corner and up the street.

What’s the oldest you’ll go?
More seasoned men take care of themselves, so I don’t want to put an age on that cause men at 60 look great. Back in the day that was a grandfather age, but they look good.

Do you ever hate being a sex symbol?
No. [Laughs] There’s something that comes along with that, that’s sexy. Although when men meet me I can tell automatically that they’re undressing me with their eyes, but you kinda get used to it.

Has being a sex symbol been a problem in any of your old relationships?
I think being a sex symbol is overrated. Everybody automatically thinks ‘Oh she’s a freak. I can’t please her.’ If you think I’m sexy great, if you don’t that’s fine.

Are you done modeling in magazines?
Oh no. You graduate from being exploited to magazines like Shape, Maxim. I could do that who knows.

Would you do Playboy?
I might.

What’s the difference between that and a black men’s magazine?
It’s just us, I’m telling you. We destroy us. That’s just the way it goes. The whole business is built to tear you down.

Has your daughter ever been embarrassed that her mother’s a sex symbol?
She was never embarrassed at all because she’s been with me longer than anything. She’s seen my body more than anybody, so she knows the body is beautiful. She knows that I’ve never tried to exploit my body and we have body parts around our house. I love to model. I know how to move my body to make it look intriguing. So she understands that. If we walk around the house looking at my size and looking at her size, she’s comfortable being the size she is and she knows that mommy’s comfortable being the size I am and we’re not the same size. Embrace what your curves, because it’s yours. I took her to the [Players Club] set with me because I wanted her to know that, ‘Hey this is a movie; this is a real story. And one day you might want to go to a strip club yourself and see this for yourself.’ There are women who are actually going to school and it’s a job to them. You make the money, don’t let the money make you. A lot of times people forget the message and it’s my responsibility to make sure they don’t. And my daughter got it at an early age.

Some people think it’s odd that you kiss your daughter on the lips.

 

 

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Kentucky Catholic School Faces Backlash After Students Berate Indigenous Peoples March Protesters

Representatives from Kentucky's Covington Catholic High School have confirmed plans to look into their student body after several of their students appeared in a viral video harassing and mocking protesters at an Indigenous Peoples March.

The viral video above spread around the web Saturday (Jan. 19) a day after the protest that took place in Washington, D.C. Teens in the video were rocking "Make America Great Again" to support President Donald Trump and the anti-abortion March for Life demonstration that was also taking place on Indigenous Peoples Day.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reports  Laura Keener, the communications director with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Covington, released a statement about the video: "We are just now learning about this incident and regret it took place. We are looking into it."

In the video below, Indigenous elder Nathan Phillips of the Omaha tribe was reportedly performing a song meant to calm down the crowd when the large group of teens surrounded him, with one eye to eye as he and another elder chanted.

https://twitter.com/2020fight/status/1086476619877765120

In tears, Phillips recalled the incident, calling for an apology and that the teens would "put that energy into making this country really great." The teens also got their messages mixed up when they also screamed "build that wall" toward him.

"I heard them saying 'build the wall, build that wall,'" he said.  "This is indigenous land. We’re not supposed to have walls here. Before anyone came here there were no walls, we never even had prisons. We always took care of our elders, we took care of our children. We taught them right from wrong."

 

View this post on Instagram

 

#ipmdc #ipmdc19 #indigenousunited #indigenouspeoplesmarch #indigenouspeoplesmarch2019

A post shared by KC🇬🇺🌴🌴 (@ka_ya11) on Jan 18, 2019 at 4:42pm PST

Speaking to The Enquirer Vincent Schilling shared how Phillips has been attacked in the past for standing up for indigenous peoples. Schilling, who is a member of the Mohawk tribe, said Phillips was pelted with trash just a few years ago by Eastern Michigan University students who hosted a Native American-themed party.

"As a Native American journalist, I find this to be one of the most egregious displays of naïve – I can’t even say naïve. It’s racism. It’s blatant racism," Schilling said.

"The guy has just been through a lot. To see Mr. Phillips treated this way is an incalculable amount of disrespect, and it's absolutely unacceptable in Native culture. As a Native man, I’ve got it countless times myself I’ve been mocked, I’ve been teased, my culture has been ridiculed. This is just another brick in the wall. I wanted so bad to walk up to those kids and say, 'You know this is a Vietnam veteran, right?'"

Director Ava DuVernay slammed the teens for their behavior as well as a number of indigenous social justice figures.

Thank you to @VinceSchilling of @IndianCountry and many others who identified the proud Native man who is being harassed. He is Mr. Nathan Phillips. I’m reposting this video from “ka_ya11” on IG. This man’s words pierce my heart. The grace. The wisdom. The hope. pic.twitter.com/BKOA40SVq5

— Ava DuVernay (@ava) January 19, 2019

Thank you for the kind shout-out @Ava

Nathan Phillips and I have shared in a sacred pipe ceremony to honor Native American veterans.

He is a Vietnam veteran, such behavior is terrible.

Again, thank you for your support. https://t.co/RRaQeEJFku

— Vincent Schilling (@VinceSchilling) January 19, 2019

The teens in the video haven't been identified.

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Carlos Osorio/AP

Man Exonerated After Serving 45 Years Forced To Sell Prison Artwork For Money

A Detroit man who served 45 years behind bars for a crime that he didn’t commit, is forced to sell his personal collection of artwork that he made in prison. Richard Phillips, 72, doesn’t have steady income at the moment, and his lawyer is currently battling the state of Michigan to get him compensated for the wrongful conviction that stole his freedom.

"I don't have an income right now," said Phillips while showing off his paintings to Fox 2 Detroit. "This is my income."

In the early 1970s, Phillips was wrongfully convicted for the murder of Gregory Harris. He was sentenced to life in prison but always maintained his innocence. “I would rather died in prison than admit to a crime I didn’t do,” Philips said.

Phillips was convicted through an eyewitness account implicating him and a second man, Richard Palombo. In 2010, Palombo admitted that Phillips had no involvement in the murder and that he didn’t even know him. A new investigation was launched in 2014, nearly 20 years later Phillips appealed his murder conviction.

Last March, Wayne County Prosecutors Kym Worthy dropped all charges against Phillips, officially freeing him from prison. “There’s nothing that I can say to bring back 40 years of his life. The system failed him. There’s no question about it,” Worthy said at the time. “This is a true exoneration. Justice is indeed being done today, but there’s nothing that we can do ... to bring back those years of his life.”

Art played a big part in helping maintain his sanity through the sentence. Though he remained optimistic, Phillips admitted that he never truly believed he would be released. To pass the time, he began painting. He pulled inspiration from everywhere: his favorite artists, photos and even tapped into some of the loneliness that he felt in prison. "It was created in a harsh environment. But it goes to show you that beauty can come from something ugly."

Last year, Detroit's Demond Ricks was awarded $1 million for spending 25 years in prison on a wrongful conviction. As it stands, Phillips is the longest-serving wrongfully convicted former prisoner in U.S. history.

Phillips' artwork will be on display at Michigan's Ferndale's Level One gallery beginning Jan. 18.

See more on his artwork in the video below.

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Gladys Knight Defends Decision To Perform National Anthem At Super Bowl Amid Criticism

Glad Knight says she wants to “give the National Anthem back its voice.” The music legend released a new statement defending her decision to sing  the National Anthem at the Super Bowl in Atlanta, next month, amid criticism from fans.

Several artists turned down offers to perform at the Super Bowl in protest of the league’s treatment of Colin Kaepernick. Knight clarified that her choice to sing has nothing to do with Kaepernick, and she doesn't exactly agree with the anthem being "dragged into the debate."

"I understand that Mr. Kaepernick is protesting two things and they are police violence and injustice,” Knight said in a statement to Variety. “It is unfortunate that our National Anthem has been dragged into this debate when the distinctive senses of the National Anthem and fighting for justice should each stand alone.”

The 74-year-old singer also noted that she has been on the forefront of social justice issues for much of her career. "I am here today and on Sunday, Feb. 3 to give the Anthem back its voice, to stand for that historic choice of words,” Knight said. “The way it unites us when we hear it and to free it from the same prejudices and struggles I have fought long and hard for all my life, from walking back hallways, from marching with our social leaders, from using my voice for good.

"No matter who chooses to deflect with this narrative and continue to mix these two in the same message, it is not so and cannot be made so by anyone speaking it,” she continued. “I pray that this National Anthem will bring us all together in a way never before witnessed and we can move forward and untangle these truths which mean so much to all of us."

Knight isn’t alone in catching heat for joining the Super Bowl lineup. Travis Scott and Big Boi, both of whom will perform with Maroon 5 at halftime, received backlash as well.

Earlier in the week, reports surfaced claiming Scott had a meeting with Kaepernick that ended with “mutual respect” and “understanding.” Kaepernick’s girlfriend and Hot 97 DJ, Nessa Diab, denied the report tweeting, “There is NO mutual respect and there is NO understanding for anyone working against @Kaepernick7 PERIOD. #stoplying.”

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