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Morehouse Professors Send Open Letter To VIBE

An Open Letter To VIBE
By David Wall Rice and Sinead Younge

October 18, 2010

Vibe magazine's recently published article dealing with several young men at Morehouse College referred to as the "Plastics" has again placed the institution in the midst of heavy criticism around issues of tolerance and acceptance. The young brothers who went on record with the periodical explained instances of misfit within the college, and within the gay community of which they are a part, based largely on their wearing women's clothing and accessories.

Since adopting the appropriate attire policy in 2009, public narratives have dogged Morehouse College as being a bulwark of homophobia. This based almost exclusively on the stipulation that men wearing women's clothes on campus is not tolerated with little regard for the main foci of the policy, professional presentation and comportment.

The best of Morehouse College is gay and straight. And, to be sure, there are spaces within the fabric of the institution that are intolerant where tolerance is particularly called for. Those are parts of the College that we are not proud of and that we work daily to be better than. But to suggest intolerance as Morehouse's default is wrong, that is not who we are - this is what we fight against. Our community recognizes one another as family. But this is not the image of Black men that fits neatly to the design of media and pop scholarship.

To conflate what a man cannot wear on campus with the identity of that man, and with the identity of the institution is narrow and misrepresents the complexity of Black men and the imperatives necessary to build Black men in the 21st Century. The Morehouse College administration has explained the appropriate attire policy as dynamic, and substantive dialogue around the policy has and will continue to occur, as it should. But to snipe at the institution from afar and to imply that Black men cannot hold their brothers and their sons accountable in ways we understand as being responsibly directive is insulting and suggests an academic approach where intellectual rigor is called for.

We are of the opinion that the Vibe article is sensational entertainment that has too freely reduced important issues to salacious spin. The concern here is that critical discourse has been compromised in the same vein, to the detriment of community.

Respectfully,

David Wall Rice & Sinead Younge
Assistant Professors,
Department of Psychology
Morehouse College

RELATED: The Mean Girls Of Morehouse

VIDEO: Morehouse Men React To 'The Mean Girls Of Morehouse'

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Man Who Killed Ahmaud Arbery Called Him The N-Word, Investigator Says

A special agent investigating the murder of Ahmaud Arbery revealed details of the aftermath of the fatal shooting. Travis McMichael  called Arbery a “fu**ing ni**er” after shooting and killing him, Richard Dial, of Georgia's Bureau of Investigation, revealed during a preliminary hearing in a Brunswick court on Thursday (June 4).

Dial testified that Travis used the n-word on at least two other occasions. “One particular one that comes to mind was he made the statement that he loved his job because he’s out on a boat and there aren’t any n-words anywhere,” Dial said per NBC News.

Travis, 34, and his father, Gregory McMichaels, 54, attended Thursday’s hearing via video phone from jail. William “Roddie” Bryan, the third man arrested for Arbery’s murder, did not attend the hearing, where a judge ruled that there was enough evidence to for a trial. Bryan reportedly told police about Travis using the n-word after killing Arbery, which the McMichaels deny. The use of a racial slur won't affect the case since Georgia has no hate crime laws.

The McMichaels are charged with felony murder and aggravated assault, for killing 25-year-old Arbery while he was out for a run in February. According to Dial, Bryan admitted to trying to block Arbery with his truck before hitting him with the vehicle. “The victim was chased, hunted down and and ultimately executed at the hands of these men,” Cobb County Chief Assistant D.A. Jesse Evans said in court.

Bryan, the McMichaels’ neighbor who recorded Arbery’s murder on his cell phone, faces felony murder, criminal contempt, and false imprisonment. All three men were arrested last month.

Grizzly footage of the deadly incident was played in court. In Bryan’s leaked cell phone recording, the men are seen surrounding Arbery, who attempts to wrestle a gun away from Travis while fighting for his life despite being shot in the chest. Travis admitted to firing three times, hitting Arbery in the middle of his chest, as well as the upper left chest area near his armpit, and in the wrist.

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Trina Apologizes For Comments About Protestors After Receiving Backlash

After catching backlash for her controversial rant about protesters, Trina apologized and clarified her comments via her Trick 'N Trina Morning Show with Trick Daddy on Miami’s 99 Jamz on Thursday (June 4).

“I just want to say I apologize sincerely to everybody I offended by what I said. I spoke passionately about how I felt about people destroying our community here in Miami,” said Trina.

Trina takes full responsibility for her comments and apologizes on the #TrickAndTrinaMorningShow pic.twitter.com/qG9A5OVe0y

— Female Rap Room (@FemaleRapRoom) June 4, 2020

The Diamond Princess explained that her previous comments seemingly likening protestors to “animals,” weren't directed at Black people who are working to bring about change. “I'm not going to say ‘Black people are animals. But I didn't say ‘Hey all of my people I'm not talking to you.’”

The Miami native went on to reveal that she has educated herself on the goal of Black Lives Matter protests. “When we spoke to the commissioner, I said to Trick [Daddy], ‘I learned a lot more about what's really happening,’ because I'm trying to get what’s the solution, what is the answer to everything that is happening? It’s more than just people in the streets doing whatever, it’s the commissioners, it’s the governor, it’s the mayor, the chief of police, I had no idea of that and now I’m understanding that. These are the people that has to protect the cities. These are the people that you want answers from, you want change.”

Trina Apologizes After Controversial Comments: I Would Never Call Black People Animals Or Any Name pic.twitter.com/y3fMWw3OiH

— theJasmineBRAND (@thejasminebrand) June 4, 2020

On Tuesday, Trick and Trina were discussing the recent uprisings in Miami when she began ranting about looters. “They need to make the curfew at 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. Keep everybody off the street, these animals off the streets, that are running around Miami-Dade County acting like they have escaped from a zoo. Lock them up at 5 p.m. so the streets can be nice and clean.”

Trina on radio calling on extending the curfew and to “keep everybody off the streets, these animals off the streets” pic.twitter.com/khdWunSNrE

— philip lewis (@Phil_Lewis_) June 3, 2020

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Al Sharpton, Tiffany Haddish, T.I. And More Attend George Floyd Memorial Service

George Floyd was honored at a televised memorial attended by politicians, celebrities and family members. The Rev. Al Sharpton, Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart, Ludacris, T.I., Will Packer, and Tyrese were among hundreds who attended the ceremony at North Central University's Frank J. Lindquist Sanctuary in Minneapolis on Thursday (June 4).

During the ceremony Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, shared stories about growing up with him. “Everywhere you go, you see people how they cling to him. They wanted to be around him,” he said. “George was like a general. He walks outside and everyone wanted to greet him, wanted to have fun with him.”

Sharpton delivered a rousing eulogy at the memorial. “I want us to not sit here and act like we had a funeral on a schedule. George Floyd should not be among the deceased,” said Sharpton. “He did not die of common health conditions, he died of a common American criminal justice malfunction. He died because there has not been the corrective behavior that has taught that if you commit a crime it does not matter if you wear blue jeans or a blue uniform, you must pay for the crime you commit.”

Sharpton touched on the similarities between the murders of Floyd’s and Eric Garner, and the oppression that the Black community has endured for hundreds of years.

“George Floyd’s story has been the story of black folks. Because ever since 401 years ago the reason we could never be who we wanted and dreamed of being, is you kept your knee on our neck, We were smarter than the underfunded schools you put us in, but you had your knee on our neck, ” said Sharpton. “We could run corporations and not hustle in the street, but you had your knee on our neck. We had creative skills, we could do whatever anybody else could do, but we couldn’t get your knee off our neck. What happened to Floyd happens every day in this country, in education, in health services, and in every area of American life. It’s time for us to stand up in George’s name and say ‘Get your knee of our necks!’”

Others in attendance included Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz, U.S., U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo, Martin Luther King III, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.

Sharpton and Floyd’s family also announced that they will be holding a march on Washington D.C. in his honor in August.

Watch the full eulogy below.

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