From the Web
More on Vibe
MacKenzie Scott is back at it! The billionaire venture philanthropist, novelist, and ex-wife of Amazon boss Jeff Bezos, has donated tens of millions of dollars to several HBCUs in the last few days.
The week's isn't over yet, but so far, Scott has donated well over $100 million to historically Black colleges including Tougaloo College, which received $6 million on Wednesday (Dec. 16).
A day earlier, Scott gave a record $40 million each to Morgan State and Norfolk University, $25 million to Alcorn State University and Bowie State, $20 million to the University of Maryland Eastern Shore , and $15 million to Elizabeth City University.
Morgan State's $40 million gift is the largest single-party donation in the HBCU’s history, and the second-largest donation to a public Maryland university.
“This monumental gift will change lives and shape futures,” Morgan State President David Wilson said in a statement. “I thank Ms. Scott for her due diligence and acknowledgement of the substantive value Morgan offers to so many throughout this nation and around the world, and entrusting that we will ensure the enduring impact of her generosity is truly transformational for many years to come.”
A majority of the donated funds will go to Morgan State’s newly established endowment fund. The remainder of the money will be used to continue the university’s efforts “essential to student success,” as well as advancing research and enhancing investments in other “mission-focused priorities and initiatives.”
Scott also donated millions to Howard University, Clark Atlanta and Delaware State University.
Her latest HBCU donation spree is a small portion of the $4 billion that she has given away over the last four months. The multi-billion dollar charitable windfall has been dispersed to 384 organizations and educational institutions in all 50 states, plus Puerto Rico and Washington D.C.
And she’s still not done.
“Though I’m far from completing my pledge, this year of giving began with exposure to leaders from historically marginalized groups fighting inequities, and ended with exposure to thousands of organizations working to alleviate suffering for those hardest hit by the pandemic,” Scott wrote in a post on Medium.com. “Witnessing the determination, creativity, and compassion of people in a crisis has been inspiring.”
Travis and Gregory McMichael, the father-son duo charged for the brutal murder of Ahmaud Arbery, were denied bail and must remain behind bars, a judge ruled on Friday (Nov. 13). Arbery’s mother, Wanda Cooper-Jones, urged the judge to keep Travis, 34, and Gregory, 64, in custody.
“These men are proud of what they've done,” she said according to NBC News. “In their selfish minds, they think they're good guys.”
William “Roddie” Bryan, a neighbor to the McMichales', was denied bail over the summer.
Bryan recorded Arbery’s murder. All three men have been indicted on suspicion of malice murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, false imprisonment and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment.
Investigators found racist text messages and social media posts from Travis McMichael, Cobb County prosecutors noted in court on Thursday. Bryan also told authorities that he heard Travis use the n-word after fatally shooting Arbery.
Arbery, 25, was out for a jog in late February when the men, approached, cornered, and shot him to death. The incident was recorded on Bryan’s cell phone.
Ferguson activist Cori Bush is making history as the first Black woman to represent Missouri in Congress. Bush, a Democrat, beat out Republican Anthony Rogers and Libertarian Alex Furman in Tuesday’s (Nov. 3) election.
“Mike Brown was murdered 2,278 days ago. We took to the streets for more than 400 days in protest,” Bush tweeted on election night. “Today, we take this fight for Black Lives from the streets of Ferguson to the halls of Congress. We will get justice.”
The historic victory came 52 years after Shirley Chisholm became the first Black woman elected to Congress. “I shouldn’t be the first,” noted Bush in another tweet. “But I am honored to carry this responsibility.”
The First. pic.twitter.com/h3o0GxeFLR
— Cori Bush (@CoriBush) November 4, 2020
A nurse, pastor, single mother and “lifelong St. Louisan,” 44-year-old Bush, who will be sworn in at the top of the year, previously ran for a Senate seat in 2016 and 2018. Her Congressional journey was chronicled in the Netflix documentary Knock Down the House.
And she's not alone in making political history during this year's election. Aside from Baltimore electing its youngest mayor ever, a record 298 women ran for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Of the nearly 300 candidates, 115 identified as Black, Latina, or Native American.
Other pioneering political wins included Ritchie Torres and Mondaire Jones becoming the first openly gay and openly gay Afro-Latino members of Congress, and Sarah McBride, who became the first trans U.S. Senator.