I need to know that you are not merely worried about this most tragic of worst case scenarios befalling my son; I need to know that you are out there changing the ethos that puts it in place. That you see this as something that unites us as mothers, friends and human beings.
Over the years, the startling consistency of the manner in which I am addressed while he is ignored has become a quasi joke between us.
No one who cares about the death of Michael Brown, or the scourge of police brutality, can ever choose not to vote, again. Period. Not only did people die so that you could vote, people die because you do not vote.
The central tenet of reproductive justice is that every woman has the right to have children, not have children, and to parent the children we have in safe and healthy environments.
Rather than spending dollars on drones and other questionable, expensive military equipment, it is time that local law enforcement officials shift those resources toward training on how to more effectively engage their local communities, especially young people of color.
I created these political cartoons to express my feelings about the current situation in Ferguson, MO. I am a native of St. Louis, by way of East St. Louis, Illinois, a community that mirrors Ferguson in it's racial and socio-economic climate.
Ferguson was not just an event in which police overreacted to heated demonstrations; it's a symptom of a generalized hatred of democracy in this country -- the hatred of the truly bold idea that politics should be the work of everyday people and that power should not be concentrated in the hands of a few.
In the past, if you needed a loan for your car, home improvements or to consolidate your credit cards, you would need to get dressed up and head down to the bank to beg for money. The Internet has made things a little easier.
There needs to be an organized national movement that proposes and lobbies for policy changes in law enforcements that need it and then in the state legislatures, Governor's Mansions, and Congress. Let the deaths of Martin, Garner, Bell, Grant, and countless others not be in vain.
Kevin Sorbo's rant about Ferguson and... American history in general (I can't say "African American" anymore, according to Sorbo) doesn't really deserve a response.
The U.S. criminal justice system is built on the premise that one size does not fit when meting out justice. An individualized sentencing practice is key to a fair and just sentence.
The news accounts in recent weeks are tragically similar, from Los Angeles to Staten Island to Ferguson. Unarmed black men killed by police. But four years before anyone knew where Ferguson was located on a map, there was the fatal shooting of Danroy Henry Jr., known to his friends and family as "DJ."
For all those who loved "Big Mike," and all the other unnamed youth who have died to "justifiable" or "legal interventions" by law officers and know that Ferguson deserves change: be inspired -- register and vote for justice and for the fulfilled promise of peace.
When my sons got their driver's licenses, I wasn't worried about the high cost of auto insurance or what car was best for them. I was terrified of what they would experience driving while black. It was time for "The Lesson" on how to survive when stopped by police.
In addition to concerns in Ferguson about lost learning time educators have a more urgent worry: making sure students who typically rely on school meals don't go hungry.
I am praying today, with my hands raised high, for a nation in which black boys are not feared, a nation in which they also need not fear for their safety.
In August 1964, mourners sang "We Shall Overcome" at the memorial services and funerals for Andrew Goodman James Chaney and Michael Schwerner, three civil rights workers murdered in Mississippi. Fifty years later, it is still being sung at services and protests in Ferguson, Missouri.
I hope every Black leader, parent, grandparent and preacher will mount a united and irresistible voice to end the structural exclusion of millions of children from the education and other opportunities required to keep them from dead-end lives.
When Phylicia Rashad said she was going to take it off, she meant it.
The Tony Award-winning actress, who decided to share her weight-loss plan with the world when she signed on as the new spokesperson for Jenny Craig, has reached her weight-loss goal of 35 pounds in just eight months.
"The most rewarding thing about reaching my goal weight is that I feel so much lighter," she said in a released statement. "There's just an overall sense of well-being. And there's the increased jenny craigenergy as well. It's nice to have people say you look nice. Who knew losing weight could be so much fun?"
The 61-year-old Houston native, best known for her role in the groundbreaking sitcom 'The Cosby Show,' will reveal her new figure in a commercial titled 'Uphill Battle,' set to debut on Aug. 29.
Jenny Craig, known as one of the world's leading weight-loss management programs,couldn't be happier with Rashad's accomplishment. "We are so proud of Phylicia's success," marketing executive Steve Bellach said. "As the public saw her journey unfold on television, Phylicia remarked that the one part of the Jenny Craig program she didn't think she needed, a personal consultant, turned out to be the key to her 35-pound weight-loss success. Phylicia exemplifies what is achievable, and for that reason she is truly inspirational."
With such a hectic schedule, Rashad credits her success to enlisting a Jenny Craig consultant to personalize her program, which was based on eating 1,200 calories a day and 30 to 40 minutes of workout activity up to four times per week.
Rashad told Essence magazine that she did the program for "health reasons," after she had difficulty walking up three flights of stairs. She said that "was a sign that things were not good."
"It had nothing to do with appearance, especially with the roles I have been playing," she continued. "It had to do with the way I felt and the way I was feeling inside."
Now, Rashad is focused on paying attention to "the integrals of when I eat and my portions."
Earlier this year, the Howard University graduate appeared on Broadway as the star of 'August: Osage County.'
This fall, she has plans to reunite with her 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof' cast members (including fellow Tony Award winner James Earl Jones) to reprise her role as Big Mama for a London run of the play.