Invoking Lennie as its benchmark, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals announced rules that fail to protect persons with intellectual disability from execution. Because of these unscientific and fictional standards, Robert Ladd, a man who has an IQ of 67, faces the death chamber this Thursday.
I am disheartened by the decision made by Senator John Cornyn, the incoming Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, to remove "Civil Rights" and "Human Rights" from the name of the Subcommittee.
I've been waiting a lifetime for a film like Black or White. Growing up biracial in the mid-70s and late 80's, I wondered when I would get to see myself up there on the big screen too. Where were the blended interracial families like mine?
As the minority-majority population becomes more of a reality, Hollywood has to go through a metamorphosis. I would guess that most smart executives know this and are looking for the kinds of partnerships that will keep them relevant. We must seize this opportunity and break down the tough walls of segregation in Hollywood.
The songbirds whose drama reaches as high as the notes they hit are back for a third season of TV One's hit series, R&B Divas: LA.
We often think that issues are irrelevant because they do not directly affect us, but we forget that we can easily be the ones in an unfortunate situation at any moment.
Do you know your AGI from your ARM from your PMI? Or does the mere mention of those acronyms make you go, "Huh?" If you don't speak personal finance, don't worry -- we're here to help.
It is a national disgrace that so many poor children live in the United States of America -- the world's richest economy. It doesn't have to be this way. It's costly. And it's the greatest threat to our future national, economic and military security.
As we reflect on Black History month, we must truly be proud of the contributions of the African Americans in every aspect of our society. African Americans, despite their history of oppression and exclusion, remain committed to America.
The 13th Amendment and the abolition of slavery is clearly worthy of celebration. Yet abolition did not have to take so long, do so little, or at such an awful cost.
For change to happen, we must focus our resources on mechanisms of support. There is another way forward that does not involve punishment or jail. It's time to stop criminalizing victims and provide help instead.
"I don't have celebrities in my phone or on my speed dial. When I finish The Wendy Williams Show I head back home to New Jersey. I like to be home with my family."
This is not just an educational but an economic issue and as such, every segment of society should support the president's efforts to find ways to expand early childhood education access for all children.
This is about more than awards deferred; it is about dreams deferred. It is about the lack of racial and gender diversity we find both behind the screen and in front of it. It is about the inevitable way the Academy's membership roll directly influences who gets nominated and who wins.
A gulf remains today in our nation between the "haves" and "have-nots," and there are few examples as glaring as the disparities that exist in our public schools.
We need to tell new stories. We need to see new actors who look, sound and act like the real America. Racism is not just a concept. It is as staring down at us from the big and small screens.
More than 86 percent of students in Maryland are earning diplomas within four years, a record-high graduation rate for the state, according to data released Tuesday. Maryland state officials celebrated the achievement, noting that the rate has risen more than four percentage points since 2010.
I stayed away from my country for 11 years, raising my three daughters in the calm and safety of Canada. I decided I could not let everything my husband tried to achieve be forgotten or destroyed. When I landed back in Mogadishu, I was amazed by what I saw. And what shocked me most was what had happened to women.
Last night, BlackVoices.com attended the opening of Lincoln Center Theater's production of John Guare's new play, 'A Free Man of Color,' directed by George C. Wolfe and starring Tony, Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Jeffrey Wright and rapper Mos Def.
The cast also features Yao Ababio Peter Bartlett, Nicole Beharie, Arnie Burton, Rosal Colón, Veanne Cox, Paul Dano, Sara Gettelfinger, Derric Harris, Justina Machado, Joseph Marcell, John McMartin, Nick Mennell, Teyonnah Parris, Postell Pringle, Esau Pritchett, Brian Reddy, Reg Rogers, Triney Sandoval, Robert Stanton, Wendy Rich Stetson, Jerome Stigler, Senfaub Stoney and David Emerson Toney.
Notabables in attendance included Ben Stiller, Stockard Channing, S. Epatha Merkerson, Lynn Whitfield, producer Stephen C. Byrd, Andre Harrell, Rosie Perez and the singing group Sweet Honey in the Rock.
'A Free Man of Color,' is a freewheeling epic set in 19th-century New Orleans. Jacques Cornet, the title character (played by Wright), is a new-world Don Juan and the wealthiest inhabitant of this sexually charged and racially progressive city. Jacques thinks all is well in his paradise until history intervenes, setting off a chain of events that no one, much less this free man of color, realizes is about to splinter the world.
For Wright, who won a Tony Award for his portrayal of a gay nurse forced to take care of a homophobic Roy Cohn as he lay dying from AIDS in Tony Kushner's 1994 award-winning play 'Angels in America,' it's a return to stage after performing with Mos Def in 2002's 'Topdog/Underdog.'
"It's great to be back on stage," he told BlackVoices.com. "
This play has really rekindled my passion for acting because it's such a nightly challenge; it requires my entire focus, so I feel great. John Guare wrote a brilliant piece, and it needed to be fully realized. We were waiting for the right opportunity to do that. Lincoln Center provided an incredible, nurturing environment to allow that to happen."
Both Wright and Mos Def talked about their fondness for one another and about making sure the show has a meaningful impact.
JW: I love Mos, and it's easier than 'Topdog' because in that play he was my brother and in this play, he's my slave. That makes for an easier dynamic. As for the show, we are all inspired to be free people of color, so I don't think there's anything more that needs to be said. This is a play about who we are as Americans and as African Americans. It's a play that wraps its arms around the complexity of our history, our past and our present, so folks should come to see it.
Mos Def: Jeffrey's a friend, a mentor and a good guy. Doing the play is challenging, but very rewarding. I hope it's as rewarding for the audience as it is for the company.
Joseph Marcell, Wendy Rich Stetson & David Emerson Toney
Peter Bartlett, Justina Machado & John Guare
George C. Wolfe & Rosie Perez
Jerome Stigler, Reg Rogers & Derric Harris
Esau Pritchett & wife
Lynn Whitfield and Stephen C. Byrd, producer of 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof'