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November 25, 2014

On the Darren Wilson Grand Jury Decision

This is a sad day. The grand jury's decision is yet another sign that all of America's sons' lives are not yet valued equally in the eyes of our courts. All of America's fathers, mothers and children should stay outraged and in motion for progress until we are finally what we say we are: One Nation, Under God, Indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for All. The path to these goals is focused advocacy and, where necessary, non-violent direct action. Those are the strategies that led to the passage of the Voting Rights Act and Civil Rights Acts 50 years ago and the outlawing of racial profiling in New York City just two years ago. Today we are all Michael Brown. Tomorrow we must ensure each of our lives is valued equally in the eyes of our nation's laws, law enforcement officers, and courts.

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Damon Dash: 'Big Pimpin' to Divorce Court

Comments (124)


It's another sad love song for rap mogul Damon Dash.

In addition to his past financial issues and lawsuits, the Roc-A-Fella Records and Rocawear co-founder has been smacked with divorce papers by his estranged wife, fashion designer Rachel Roy.

According to the New York Daily News, Roy has filed for divorce from her husband of four years in Manhattan Supreme Court.

Although Roy and Dash have yet to comment on the situation, the paper retrieved an electronic record of the case stating the divorce is for "non-monetary relief" and should be resolute by February.

2008 Deaths

    Odetta Holmes
    "The Voice of the Civil Rights Movement" was a singer, actress, guitarist, songwriter and activist.
    December 31 1930 - December 2 2008.

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    Bernie Mac
    Comedian, Actor
    Oct. 5, 1957 - Aug. 9, 2008.

    AP

    Isaac Hayes
    Singer, songwriter, record producer, composer and actor.
    August 20, 1942 - August 10, 2008

    Reuters

    Miriam Makeba, "Mama Africa"
    South African folk singer and anti-apartheid activist.
    March 4, 1932 - November 10, 2008.

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    Jennifer Hudson's 57-year-old mother, Darnell Donerson, brother, Jason, and 7-year-old nephew, Julian King, were killed in 2008.

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    Shakir Stewart
    The Island Def Jam executive who became head of the legendary rap label following Jay-Z's departure, killed himself on Nov. 1. He was 34 years old.

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    George Carlin
    Stand-up comedian, actor and author.
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    Madelyn Dunham
    Barack Obama's grandmother
    October 26, 1922 - Nov 3, 2008.

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    Levi Stubbs
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    Dee Dee Warwick
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Dash and Roy tied the knot in Mexico in 2005 and have two daughters.

As for Dash making a return to his former 'Big Pimpin' lifestyle, which included the hip-hop entrepreneur popping bottles of Cristal champagne topless in every Jay-Z video, he may want to reconsider his business plan.

Currently the 37-year-old owes $2 million in state taxes, faces foreclosure on his two New York City condos and is also being sued by law firms and landlords for not paying his bills, according to reports. He also reportedly had his Chevrolet Tahoe SUV seized last year for failure to pay the $714.99 monthly car note.

"He's broke, he got nothing left," a source told the newspaper.

For now, the marketing savvy mogul is keeping his head above water by producing Harlem rapper Jim Jones' off-Broadway play titled 'Hip-Hop Monologues.' While promoting the show in New York Magazine, Dash mentioned that he has big plans for his comeback. "When I come back, I'm gonna change the economy as well," he said.

Celebrity Money Problems

    Evander "The Real Deal" Holyfield may have been risen to the top in the boxing ring, but recent financial troubles have been brought him to his knees. His $10 million estate in Atlanta is under foreclosure, he owes another $550,000 to a Utah landscaping company who is suing, and if that isn't enough, one of his baby mommas is taking him back to court for missed child support payments, ranging from around $3,000 a month for one child. In 2003, courts came to the conclusion that Evander was making around $604,000 a month when stipulations for child support was being made.

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    This month, Ed McMahon, best known as the late Johnny Carson's sidekick and spokesman for Publishers Clearinghouse, appeared on Larry King Live explaining how he fell more than $600,000 behind in payments on his $4.8 million in mortgage. The comedy giant says he's hoping to avoid foreclosure on his multi-million dollar Beverly-Hills home, but that may be an uphill battle since medical problems have kept him from working.

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    The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, found herself singing the blues when her claims 700,000 mansion in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan slipped into foreclosure. Her attorney claims it was all a mistake that occurred over $445 in 2005 taxes and late fees. Turns out the state may have been on to a delinquency trend because she now owes a total of $19,192 in back taxes on the property through 2007.

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    The Death Row Music label made legends out of Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur but it's now up for sale. Why? Back in 2006, Founder Marion 'Suge' Knight filed for bankruptcy in the face of he a $107 Million judgement. In the court papers he filed in the case, he estimated his assets to be $50,000 or less with debts totaling more than $100 million.

    Robert Mora, Getty Images

    He may be best known for his hit "Can't Touch This" but Rapper/Singer M.C. Hammer was hit by a money crisis. The man who had no problem bringing hip-hop music mainstream ran into problems when he hired his close friends, making him responsible for a $500,000-a-month payroll. He also had a $30 million mansion combined with extravagant cars and even exotic animals. All of these things put the hammer down on Stanley Burrell's loot. He eventually lost it all, including some of the "friends" he tried to give a leg up.

    Tina Fultz, ZUMA Press

    Pint size child actor Gary Coleman whose famous for the line "what you talking about Willis?" is frequently found talking about his financial woes. It has been reported that chilhood star Gary Coleman was paid $1,500 per episode the first season of Different Stroke; that later went up to $20,000 , then $40,000, and as high as $70,000. He also made almost $18 million from his tv and movies work during the period Diff'rent Strokes was on the air (1978-1986). But, when Coleman reached adulthood he found that bad investments and lavish spending on the part of his parents, left him nearly penniless. Now, Gary Coleman has been selling various items on the Ebay including his autographed pants and a Saturn-model car.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Rumors of the King of Pop's finances going bust have been swirling for years. Recently, his famed Neverland Ranch was even threatened by foreclosure but he received a last minute reprieve a given by Colony Capital, a private equity group, to whom he now owes $23 million. In 2006, he was forced to use his Beatles catalog as well as copyrights to his own songs, as collateral for roughly $270 million in bank loans. So, what happened to all the money the man who has been making music since 1975 made, lavish spending sprees, exotic animals and unusual purchases like a hyperbaric chamber are said to be to blame. He may have danced in a solution to his money problems. He may be slated to headline a show on the Vegas strip.

    AP

    "Iron" Mike Tyson isn't as strong financial as one would think after earning a reportedly earning some 300 million dollars in the boxing ring. Still, he KO'd his own financial future by declaring bankruptcy in 2003. He was also forced to sell the Connecticut mansion he shared with ex-wife Robin Givens, which was later purchased by Rapper 50 Cent. Tyson blamed his lavish spending and promoter Don King for his empty pockets.

    Critics once said she had one of the clearest voices in music, but diva Whitney Houston his a sour note in 2006 when she came close to losing her $6 million, 10-acre New Jersey estate. The songstress reportedly owed thousands of dollars in back taxes. Then, in 2007, dozens of Houston's belongings were auctioned off bras, bustiers, and other props from her past tours, along with ah $400,000 see-through grand piano and her ex-husband Bobby Brown's grammy awards. The reason for the auction, she allegedly owed the storage company $200,000 in back rent.

    Kevin Winter, Getty Images

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