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Baltimore Court Denies Marilyn Mosby's Request To Discard Over 5,000 Marijuana Cases

“I am deeply disappointed...My office is considering our options and will pursue all avenues to ensure we continue standing up for the people of Baltimore.”

Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby’s request to overturn thousands of marijuana-related cases has been denied, The Baltimore Sun reports. The approximate 5,000 cases were denied dismissal because Mosby allegedly failed to present the adequate evidence, which would prove that the charges against those accused had a “disparate impact” on their lives.

Baltimore District Court Judge Kathleen Sweeney also reportedly questioned Mosby’s motives for wanting to clear these cases, because, she herself had prosecuted some of them. Initially, Mosby announced in January that she was going to stop prosecuting folks for marijuana-related cases, which disproportionately affect people of color in impoverished communities.

According to a study conducted by the American Civil Liberties Union in 2013, African-Americans are 3.73 times more likely than whites to be arrested for possession of marijuana. This, of course, impacts the national average of incarceration which affects black men the most. The same study found that the black arrest rate is 716 per 100,000 while whites are affected by 192 per 100,000.

"Ask any mother who has lost a son to gun violence whether she wants us to spend more time solving and prosecuting her son's killer or to spend time on marijuana possession," Mosby said in a statement, NPR reports. "It's not a close question."

"Though white and Black residents use marijuana at roughly the same rates, marijuana laws have been and continue to be disproportionately enforced against people of color," she continued. "There is absolutely no link between marijuana and violent crime and we've seen that all across the country."

Mosby had plans to dismiss cases that dated as far back as 2011. She presented the Baltimore District Court to dismiss nearly 3,800 cases and another 1,000 cases from the Baltimore Circuit Court, who is represented by Circuit Judge W. Michel Pierson.

“With 3,778 opportunities, the State fails to identify any actual single consequence suffered by any of these individuals,” Sweeney stated.

The state attorney is disappointed that authorities did not comply with her requests. “The role that courts play in our society is to be a place of last resort for people who have been wronged,” Mosby wrote in an email to WBFF Fox Baltimore reported. “I am deeply disappointed that this ruling did not afford us any opportunity to present legal arguments and essentially eliminated the court from being a safe harbor for those that were harmed by the discriminatory enforcement of marijuana laws in this city. My office is considering our options and will pursue all avenues to ensure we continue standing up for the people of Baltimore.”

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Lauren London Debuts The Marathon Clothing x Puma Collection

Lauren London and PUMA are teaming up once again for a collaboration honoring the late Nipsey Hussle. London debuted the Marathon Clothing x Puma’s “Hussle and Motivate” collection on social media on Thursday (Jan. 23).

London is featured in the promo shoot with Hussle's close friends, YG, J. Stone, and Pacman Da Gunman.

 

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#HussleAndMotivate

A post shared by Lauren London (@laurenlondon) on Jan 23, 2020 at 5:56pm PST

Another image from the clothing collaboration shows London wearing a white sweatshirt with a message that reads, “We (The Marathon Clothing) honor the unwavering faith of those that never quit. Our products represent their testimony. Life is a marathon.”

 

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#HussleAndMotivate

A post shared by Lauren London (@laurenlondon) on Jan 23, 2020 at 5:58pm PST

London previously linked with Puma for a viral video campaign paying tribute to her longtime love. Hustle, whose Victory Lap recently went platinum, will be celebrated at the 62nd annual Grammy Awards with a tribute featuring YG, Roddy Ricch, Kirk Franklin, DJ Khaled and John Legend.

The Grammys air on CBS on Sunday, Jan. 26 at 8p.m. ET.

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Lil Wayne performs at the 2019 Outside Lands music festival at Golden Gate Park on August 09, 2019 in San Francisco, California.
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Lil Wayne Reveals Release Date For ‘Funeral’ Album

Four years after initially announcing the project, Lil Wayne took to Twitter on Thursday (Jan. 23) to reveal that his  Funeral album will drop next week.

“Welcome to the funeral, closed casket as usual,” Tunechi says in the album teaser. The Grammy winner also tweeted a link for fans to pre-order physical and digital copies of the album as a CD, vinyl or “digital cassette.” The online shop features album merchandise, including long-sleeved shirts, hoodies and beanies.

The New Orleans native’s last studio LP, Tha Carter V, dropped in 2018 after years of delays. In 2019, the 37-year-old rapper embarked on a joint summer tour with Blink-182, but the jaunt was marred by difficulty as Wayne walked off stage during one show and threatened to quit. He changed his mind hours later.

Even with all the tour trouble, Blink-182 had nothing but good things to say about Weezy. “The one day where he walked off stage, he had said, ‘I just felt like they didn’t like me,’ so he walked off stage,” drummer Travis Barker explained in an interview last year.

Funeral drops on Jan. 31. Check out the album teaser below.

1/31 https://t.co/7VtPC39vT6 pic.twitter.com/FQrLNA8ptn

— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) January 23, 2020

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Black People Make Up More Than 50% Of U.S. Homeless Population, Study Finds

Black people in the U.S. are disproportionately impacted by homelessness, per an Annual Homeless Assessment Report released by the Housing and Urban Department. According to the report, blacks account for more than 50% of the country’s homeless population, despite making up only 13% of the U.S. population.

“African Americans have remained considerably overrepresented among the homeless population compared to the U.S. population,” the report states. “African Americans accounted for 40% of all people experiencing homelessness in 2019 and 52% of people experiencing homelessness as members of families with children.

“In contrast, 48% of all people experiencing homelessness were white, compared with 77% of the U.S. population.” People identifying as Hispanic or Latino are bout “22% of the homeless population but only 18% of the populations overall.”

As of 2019, the U.S. homeless population swelled to 568,000, an increase of about 10,000 from the previous year. In 2019, Roughly 35,000 of those experiencing unaccompanied homelessness were under the age of 25, a 4% decrease from 2018. The number of those experiencing chronic homelessness increased by 9% between 2018 and 2019.

A staggering 52% of black families experience homelessness, compared to 35% for white families.

The goal of the report is to “demonstrate continued progress toward ending homelessness, but also a need to re-calibrate policy to make future efforts more effective and aligned with the unique needs of different communities.”

HUD, which is has been releasing the annual housing stats since 2007, shows a 3% bump in the number of those experiencing homelessness on any given night, a 16% increase in California, and a “decrease” in other states. California accounts for 53% (108,432 people) off all unsheltered homeless people in the country. Despite being only twice as large as Florida, California’s homeless population is nine times that of the Sunshine State, which came in at a distant second place with 6% (12,476 people). New York, Hawaii, California, Oregon and Washington have the highest rates of homelessness per 10,000 people.

Numerous variables come into play when determining the origin of the black homeless epidemic due to a longstanding system of oppression in housing, and beyond. Black families are twice as  likely to experience poverty in the U.S., compared to white families; and in spite of laws against open discrimination, black renters face overt and covert financial and racial prejudice, in addition to gentrification and the racial pay gap.

On Jan. 7, HUD unveiled a housing proposal that attempts to undue Obama-era housing mandates put in place to prevent racial discrimination. The newly-released proposal may end up further promoting racial discrimination.

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