Gabrielle Douglas American Cup 2016
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#BlackGirlMagic: Gabrielle Douglas Kicks Off Olympic Year With A 2016 American Cup Win

Gabrielle Douglas is eyeing history – again.

Gabrielle Douglas – #BlackGirlMagic representative – had a noteworthy start to the year on Saturday (Mar. 5). Snatching the win at the 2016 American Cup, the 20-year-old history-maker prefaced her goal to make history yet again this year at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games this summer.

Douglas faced a few setbacks leading up to her next attempt at the gold medal, including injuries that placed gymnastics on hold, and severed ties with her former coach Liang Chow. But neither of those stopped her from her winning total of 60.165 at the American Cup, edging out Maggie Nichols and Canada’s Elsabeth Black in every category except the floor exercise. Douglas is now looking to become the the first woman to win a gold medal in back-to-game Olympics since 1968.

“From the bottom of my heart, I really believe that I can achieve more,” Douglas said. “And it’s just not for the wrong intentions. I’m like, ‘Guys, I’m back. I’m serious.’ I feel like gradually and the more and more I keep proving that, I really hope that people believe it.”

Though she has already staked her claim on the history books by becoming the first black woman to win the individual all-around gold, Douglas has an obstacle in her way this time around: 18-year-old shoe-in Simone Biles, who has been deemed “unbeatable.” But it looks like Douglas ain’t got no worries just yet.

Watch a clip from Gabrielle Douglas’ American Cup win below:

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LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on during a game against the Brooklyn Nets at the Staples Center on March 10, 2020 in Los Angeles, CA.
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LeBron James Demands Justice For Breonna Taylor During Press Conference

At his first post-game press conference ahead of the relaunch of the NBA season, LeBron James used the media spotlight to demand justice for Breonna Taylor.

“First of all, I want to continue to shed light on justice for Breonna Taylor and to her family and everything that’s going on with that situation,” the Lakers star told the media on Thursday (July 23).

“We want the cops arrested who committed that crime. In the state of Kentucky what’s going on down there, I know a lot of people are feeling the same,” said James. “Us as the NBA, and [as] players, me as one of the leaders of this league, I want her family to know, and I want the state of Kentucky to know, that we feel for her and we want justice. That’s what it’s all about. What’s right is right, and what’s wrong is wrong.”

LeBron James opened his press conference speaking about Breonna Taylor. LeBron: “We want the cops arrested that committed that crime.” pic.twitter.com/UjGUJRZ5rG

— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) July 24, 2020

LeBron James on Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and speaking out on racial inequality pic.twitter.com/hJFwePA61B

— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) July 24, 2020

Taylor, 26, was shot to death in March after Louisville Police Officers Myles Cosgrove, Brett Hankison and Jonathan Mattingly raided her home on a no-knock warrant.

James also paid tribute to Taylor by writing her name on the sneakers that he wore during Thursday's preseason game.

Justice 4 Breonna Taylor ✍️ @KingJames pic.twitter.com/LoXNLMD1Kr

— B/R Kicks (@brkicks) July 23, 2020

Kentucky AG  Daniel Cameron has fended off criticism for failing to bring charges against the officers more than 100 days after the fatal shooting.

The case remains under investigation.

 

 

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NFL Will Reportedly Play Black National Anthem When Season Kicks Off

The NFL is reportedly adding “Lift Every Voice and Sing” to its playlist. The Black national anthem will be played (and possibly performed) during week 1 of the upcoming season, ESPN reported on Thursday (July 2).

The song will reportedly play ahead of the “Star-Spangled Banner,” during pregame festivities.

The move, which comes four years after Colin Kaepernick began his on-the-field protest against police brutality, reflects the latest shift in the league’s ever-changing stance on the Black Lives Matter movement. After previously banning players from protesting during the National Anthem, and quietly settling collusion lawsuits brought on by Kaepernick and Eric Reid, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell admitted last month that the league was wrong for essentially silencing players and ignoring issues of police brutality, racial injustice, and systematic oppression.

“We, the NFL, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of Black people, Goodell said in a video statement. “We, the NFL, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the NFL, believe Black Lives Matter.”

The Kansas City Chiefs and the Houston Texans are expected to kick off the 2020-2021 NFL season on Sept. 10.

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Bubba Wallace Noose Incident Was Not A Hate Crime, FBI Says

An FBI investigation into a noose found in NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace’s garage door at the Talladega Superspeedway had been their since last October. After a “thorough review of the facts and evidence,” the bureau determined that Wallace, the only Black full-time NASCAR driver, was not the victim of a hate crime.

“Fifteen FBI special agents conducted numerous interviews regarding the situation at Talladega Superspeedway.  After a thorough review of the facts and evidence surrounding this event, we have concluded that no federal crime was committed,” U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and FBI Special Agent Johnnie Sharp Jr. said in a joint statement on Tuesday (June 23).

Although the noose was found in Garage 4, “nobody could have known” that Wallace would be assigned that garage number.

NASCAR released a similar statement confirming that “photographic evidence” concluded that the garage pull “roped fashioned like a noose had been positioned there since last fall.”

“We appreciate the FBI's quick and thorough investigation and are thankful to learn that this was not an intentional, racist act against Bubba,” NASCAR's statement continued. “We remain steadfast in our commitment to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment for all who love racing.” The incident came two weeks after NASCAR banned the Confederate Flag.

pic.twitter.com/NCYiNBSuFn

— NASCAR (@NASCAR) June 23, 2020

After the noose was found Wallace stated in part that the “despicable act of racism and hatred leave me incredibly saddened and serves as a painful reminder of how much further we have to go as a society.” Later that day, Wallace was joined by all 39 NASCAR drivers and their crews as they pushed his car down the pit road in a show of solidarity.

The 26-year-old Alabama native has said that the murder of Ahmaud Arbery inspired him to become more vocal  about the Black Lives Matter Movement.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

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A post shared by bubbawallace (@bubbawallace) on Jun 7, 2020 at 1:58pm PDT

Despite a small number of Black drivers to join NASCAR the sport remains notoriously segregated but recent event have brought on more Black fans. “Supporting and thanking the pre-existing fans, and encouraging the new ones,” Wallace captioned an Instagram photo of him greeting fans. “For all of those new to the sport, we welcome you with open arms.”

 

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Supporting and thanking the pre-existing fans, and encouraging the new ones. For all of those new to the sport, we welcome you with open arms.

A post shared by bubbawallace (@bubbawallace) on Jun 23, 2020 at 8:42am PDT

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