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November 26, 2014

Response to Ferguson: Systemic Problems Require Systemic Solutions

Ferguson ASSOCIATED PRESS

Decades of segregation and inequality in Ferguson, as well as most American metropolitan areas, have fostered a racial inequality exacerbated by the criminalization of not just poverty, but the criminalization of black and brown bodies. Too many whites are too willing to believe that a black body poses a threat.

What Comes Next In Ferguson

Ferguson Beauty
St. Louis Post-Dispatch via Getty Images
HuffPost Reports

Cops Release Video Of 12-Year-Old Killed By Police

Tamir Rice
ASSOCIATED PRESS

WATCH: Ferguson Police Arrest And Drag A Protestor Away

Deray Mckesson
HuffPost Live

Ferguson Protesters In Boston Stop Outside Jail, Chant 'Black Lives Matter'

Ferguson
Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

Former Model And Restaurateur Goes Missing

Barbara Smith Resturant
The Washington Post via Getty Images

My Son After Ferguson: ‘I Feel Like I'm Wearing the Losing Team's Jersey'

Ferguson Hands Up
Joe Raedle via Getty Images

What Your Black Friend Might Think but Not Say About Ferguson

Police Brutality
Getty

12 Things White People Can Actually Do After the Ferguson Decision

Ferguson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Car Plows Through Michael Brown Rally (GRAPHIC)

Minneapolis 1
Aaron Lavinsky / The Star Tribune / AP

Why Do Black Men Die With Their Hands Up?

Ferguson
afp

Authorities To Release Video Of 12-Year-Old Boy Shot By Police Officer

Tamir Rice
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Attorney: Ferguson Prosecutor Had ‘No Interest' In Indicting Darren Wilson

Robert Mcculloch
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'Police Don't Care - He's Black,' Says Grandma Of Man Shot During Ferguson Protests

Deandre
Facebook

Boy Shot Dead By Cleveland Police Did Not Point Replica Gun At Officer

Tamir Rice
Justice For Tamir Rice

Darren Wilson: There's 'No Way' Michael Brown Put His Hands Up

Darren Wilson
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If You Think Looters And Arsonists Are The Only Ones Protesting Ferguson, Think Again

Ferguson Peaceful Protests
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Self-defense Claim Remains Big Hurdle For Feds In Brown Killing

Darren Wilson
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Niece Of Man Killed By Detroit Cop: 'When I See A Police Officer, I Literally Cringe'

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Ben Carson: Race Relations Are Worse Under Obama

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How Do We Hold On to Hope in Times of Injustice?

Death Penalty
fergregory via Getty Images

Guard Reinforcements Contain Damage In Ferguson

National Guard Ferguson
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Ferguson: The Latest Manifestation of Systemic Racial Injustice

Us_uk_ca

Ricky Jackson, Exonerated After 39 Years In Prison, Is 'Living In The Moment'

Ricky Jackson
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Obama Says He Has No Sympathy For Ferguson Violence

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ASSOCIATED PRESS

Michael Brown Family Attorneys Address Prosecutors' Failings

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Aaron P. Bernstein via Getty Images

Ferguson: What's Going On

Ferguson Memorial
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What It Will Really Take to Heal in Ferguson

Ferguson Grand Jury Evidence Reveals Mistakes, Holes In Investigation

Michael Brown

Here's A Timeline Of The Events In Ferguson Since Michael Brown's Death

Michael Brown
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These Peaceful Responses To The Ferguson Decision Show The U.S. At Its Best

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Instagram/ Jefry Andres Wright

Ramarley Graham's Mother To Michael Brown's Family: 'It's Gonna Be Hard'

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New York Daily News Archive via Getty Images

What The Ferguson Verdict Should Have Taught You About Critical Thinking

Ferguson
David McNew via Getty Images

Ferguson Mayor: Darren Wilson Still On Leave

Darren Wilson

Gov: More Than 2,200 National Guardsmen Available In Ferguson

Jay Nixon
The Washington Post via Getty Images

Brown Family Blasts Prosecutor's Handling Of Case

Brown Family
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University Of Chicago Says Racially Motivated Facebook Threat Was A Hoax

University Of Chicago
Matt Frankel via Getty Images

Beyond Drinking From Water Fountains and Riding Buses, Black People Have a Right to Survive

Black Ferguson Protestors
David McNew via Getty Images

WATCH: Heckler Interrupts Al Sharpton's Ferguson Press Conference

Al Sharpton
Aaron P. Bernstein via Getty Images

Photographic Evidence Released In Ferguson Case

Mike Brown Shooting
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Students Across The Nation Protest Ferguson Non-Indictment

Occupystamp
Twitter: _fasikaaa

Michael Brown Grand Jury Process 'Should Be Indicted,' Family Lawyer Says

Sharpton Crump
Aaron P. Bernstein via Getty Images

Russian Envoy: Ferguson Shows Racial Discrimination In U.S.

Ferguson
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Obama's Varied Reactions On Michael Brown And Trayvon Martin

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Stevie Wonder: 'Everyone Has To Be Accountable For The Guns That They Carry'

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How Teachers Around The Country Plan To Talk To Their Students About Ferguson

Ferguson
Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Ferguson Clergy: 'We're Not Going To Be Silenced'

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frjonstratton/Twitter

Al Sharpton Reacts To Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

Rev Al Sharpton
Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Notable Black Figures React After Ferguson Officer Not Indicted In Michael Brown Shooting

Ferguson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Protesters: 'The Results Are In. And We Still Don't Have Justice'

Ferguson Protesters
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Riding and Waiting: A Response to the Non-Indictment

Ferguson Missouri Cars
JEWEL SAMAD via Getty Images

Clergy Sing Classic Freedom Song Following Grand Jury Decision

Clergy
AP

Response to Ferguson: Systemic Problems Require Systemic Solutions

Ferguson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Michael Brown Shooting Witness Admitted Racism In Journal Entry

Ferguson
JEWEL SAMAD via Getty Images

One Artist Explains How Ferguson Revealed The Truth About Police In America

Molly
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In Light of Michael Brown, We Must Connect the Dots

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'They're Never Gonna Care': Michael Brown's Mother Speaks Out (VIDEO)

Leslie
Facebook

'There Will Be More Fergusons'

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What It Takes To Convict A Killer Cop

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It's Time To Wake Up To The Myth Of A 'Post-Racial America'

American Flag Ferguson
Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Body Found Near Apartments Where Michael Brown Was Killed

Ferguson
ASSOCIATED PRESS

President Obama Should Follow Bush Sr.'s Example and Green Light a Wilson Prosecution

Obama Ferguson
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Don Lemon Sparks Outrage Once Again

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How Should I Feel?

Ferguson Grand Jury
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HUFFPOLLSTER: Poll Finds Racial Division On Charging Wilson

Ferguson
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On the Darren Wilson Grand Jury Decision

Ferguson
Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

Oakland Protests Over Ferguson Decision Cause Havoc

Oakland Ferguson
Michael McLaughlin/The Huffington Post

Most Police Shootings Don't End With Prosecutions

Ferguson Police
ASSOCIATED PRESS

How America's Newspapers Are Covering Ferguson

St Louis Postdispatch
St Louis Post-Dispatch

Police Officials Condemn Ferguson Protests

Ferguson Police
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Protesters Shut Down Three New York City Bridges

Nyc Ferguson
Twitter: Conor Skelding

Why Darren Wilson Said He Killed Michael Brown

Darren Wilson
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St. Louis Blues: An Old Refrain In Grand Jury Decision

Ferguson Mo
Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

CNN Anchor Almost Hit By Tear Gas In Ferguson

Teargas_original
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Ferguson Erupts In Protests After Darren Wilson Grand Jury Announcement

Ferguson
Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Scenes From Ferguson: Town Shaken By Grand Jury Decision Not To Indict Darren Wilson

Ferguson
Justin Sullivan via Getty Images

Thousands Protest Nationwide After Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

Ferguson Protest
MANDEL NGAN via Getty Images

Disappointment, Pleas For Peace Dominate Reactions To Ferguson Verdict

Ferguson

Stations Reassure Viewers As Ferguson Interrupts 'Dancing With The Stars'

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Photos Of Darren Wilson's Injuries Released

Sd
St. Louis County Prosecutor Office

Obama Makes Statement On Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

Barack Obama

Darren Wilson's Statement Fails To Mention Michael Brown

Darren Wilson

Politicians React To Ferguson Grand Jury Not Indicting Darren Wilson

John Lewis
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson Not Indicted In Michael Brown Shooting

Michael Brown
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Here's A Much-Needed Reminder About Civil Unrest In Light Of The Ferguson Decision

San Francisco World Series Win
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Woman Dead After Gun Bought To Prepare For Ferguson Decision Misfires: Report

Ferguson
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Grand Jury Expected To Resume Ferguson Deliberations

Ferguson Grand Jury
MICHAEL B. THOMAS via Getty Images

'We Love You, Bill Cosby!'

Bill Cosby
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Protesters In St. Louis March Through Neighborhood, Chant 'Black Lives Matter'

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Marion Barry Reflects On Second Chances In One Of His Final Interviews

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Police Agree To Some, But Not All, Protester Expectations In Ferguson

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Scott Olson via Getty Images

Anxiety Mounts In Ferguson

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Mike Brown's Mom Urges Ferguson Protesters To Remain Peaceful

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On A Night Of Peaceful Protests In Ferguson, One Reporter's Arrest Breaks The Calm

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Rudy Giuliani Says White Cops Needed To Stop Black People From Shooting Each Other

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Marion Barry, 4-Term D.C. Mayor, Dead At 78

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The Impact and Lasting Legacy of Ferguson, Missouri and Michael Brown

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Ferguson Announcement Does Not Appear Imminent

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Obama: Don't Use Ferguson As 'An Excuse For Violence'

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REPORT: FBI Arrests Men Near Ferguson After Allegedly Buying Explosives For Protests

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University Of Chicago's Racist Halloween Costume Controversy Part Of Larger Problem

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These Ferguson Protesters Have Become The Movement's De Facto Spokespeople

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Can Ferguson Residents Wait on Commission Report?

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Here Are The Key Figures In The Ferguson Shooting

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Judge Issues Court Orders To Uphold Right To Record Police In Ferguson

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Fox Host Links Immigration Reform To Ferguson Grand Jury Decision

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NYPD Officer Shoots And Kills Unarmed Man In Brooklyn

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Why Does Alleged Sexual Predator R. Kelly Still Have a Career?

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REPORT: Ferguson Officer Darren Wilson In Talks To Resign

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Why We Don't Need Another White Dude On The Cover Of People's Sexiest Man Alive

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Bill Cosby's Arizona Show Canceled

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Ferguson Police Arrest Demonstrators In Confrontation

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This Is What School Districts Are Doing To Prepare For The Ferguson Verdict

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Raven-Symone Speaks Out Against Rumors That Bill Cosby Assaulted Her

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Facts On Stop And Frisk Reform That Shatter Right-Wing Media Fears

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'Urban Militia' Group Offers Bounty For Location Of Officer Darren Wilson

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Cosby Controversy: 6 Signs Of Rape Culture

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Police Arrest 6 Protesters In St. Louis

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Ferguson and the 'Us vs. Them' Illusion

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Calling Nevada's Incoming Speaker Racist And Sexist Would Be A Huge Understatement

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Rand Paul Honestly Thinks He's Congress' Biggest Defender Of Minority Rights

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Violence in Post-Verdict Ferguson: What We Should Be Worried About

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Florida Cops On What Ferguson Can Learn From Trayvon

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Meet The Teach For America Official Charged With Bringing Change To Ferguson And Beyond

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Sharpton: Activists In Ferguson Are Ready

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Why One Ferguson Store Owner Refuses To Board Up His Windows

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Study Shows White Americans Draw Distinctions Between African-Americans And Blacks

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Mo'ne Davis Has A Memoir Coming Soon -- And She's Only 13

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Reflections on Ol' Dirty Bastard Ten Years Later: ODB as a Microcosm of American Inequality

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Racial Disparity In Ferguson Arrests Is Big, But Not As Big As Other Places

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One to Watch: Actor Adetokumboh M'Cormack Believes in Aliens, Loves Him Some Africa & Has a Charitable Spirit

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Before Sierra Leonean actor Adetokumboh M'Cormack faced off with mysterious aliens in this week's #1 movie 'Battle: Los Angeles', also starring Aaron Eckhart, Michelle Rodriguez, Cory Hardrict and Bridget Moynahan, he appeared in such acclaimed TV dramas as 'Heroes,' 'Lost' and '24,' as well as the Academy Award-nominated film 'Blood Diamond' with Djimon Hounsou, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Connelly.

In the Yoruba language, Ade means "crown" and Tokumboh comes from the word Tokunbo meaning "carried over waters."

M'Cormack credits his mother, a former actress and teacher, for igniting in him a passion for the performing arts. By the age of 4, this passion became a reality. His first feature film role came in George Miller's 'The Great Elephant Escape' in 1995. Set in Kenya, the film centers on the plight of an elephant and the young boys who seek to save it.

The SUNY Purchase alum worked in marketing at New York's Roundabout Theater Company shortly after graduating magna cum laude. A former house captain at the school's performing arts center, Ade - as he is known - not only has a big appetite for acting, but also a big heart.

BlackVoices.com recently caught up with M'Cormack, who spoke about working on 'Battle' and whether alien life actually exists. Excerpts of the conversation are below:

BlackVoices.com: In your latest film, Los Angeles is faced with an alien threat. 2012 is theorized to be a big year for planet Earth. A year of great catastrophe. There are some doomsday theorists who say that the world will end next year and/or that life forms from other planets will descend on planet Earth. What are your thoughts on 2012?
Adetokumboh M'Cormack: I feel like there have been so many signs of the times. Look at what happened in Japan with the 8.9 earthquake; there is so much going on in the world. It really does feel as if the apocalypse is close. One does have to wonder if there might be some truth in the Mayan calendar. I like to be an optimist and think that the Earth has at least a few more years and that the world is not going to end in 2012. I do believe that things are going to continue for a lot longer. But, that being said, I do think that after having done this film, there might be alien life. Would they necessarily be hostile and try to invade and exterminate the human race, I don't know.


BV: You've lived in many countries, for instance, Sierra Leone, Kenya and Nigeria. How have your experiences in all of these countries shaped you?
AM: I'm still very much a Sierra Leonean man who has lived in these different countries. I embrace my culture. I embrace my language. It has completely shaped me and given me a strong sense of self - my cultural identity. I am very proud of who I am. I hope that's something I will never lose as the years go by.


BV: What are some of your fondest childhood memories?
AM: One of the things we used to do on Boxing Day, the day after Christmas, was go on picnics in Kenya. We'd go to these waterfalls. They were beautiful. Those were some of the best times of my childhood. Just enjoying being with friends and family.


BV: Many kids as well as adults are not taught to appreciate nature.
AM: When I was in New York, I remember thinking I want to see land. I want to see nature, because I miss it so much.


BV: The 2006 film 'Blood Diamond' was set in Sierra Leone during its civil war. How was it working on the film and tackling the troubling subject matter?
AM: It was really intense and very personal for me. I knew a lot of people who were affected by the war. Whenever I do a movie, I like to do a lot of research. I heard stories of people being locked in houses and people being burned alive. It was really heartbreaking. It was hard and difficult to deal with. The realities were so much more than most people go through in their lifetimes. Most human beings don't ever have to deal with having to kill a family member in order to survive. There is so much havoc in the world that a lot of people would not be able to empathize with. And then, I'm playing a character directly responsible for changing people's lives. That was also difficult. Ultimately, I always strive for authenticity. I told myself that being Sierra Leonean, I needed to be as authentic as I could, and I needed to do the story justice.


BV: Not only are you an actor, but you're are also involved in some very important causes. Where do you find time for all of this?
AM: As human beings, we have to think outside of a small bubble. That's basically how I try to live my life, thinking how I can help my fellow person. How I can do my part to make this world a better place. I'm very passionate about certain causes. I lost my mother to cancer. So, any cause that is cancer-related and raises awareness, I'm very close to and eager to get involved.

And, also, the arts. I love promoting the arts. The arts are important and necessary for society. I'm on the executive board member of Inception to Exhibition, and I just love the fact that we promote art and get people involved in the arts. In Africa, especially, I feel there is this certain fear of the arts - that the only way you can be successful is if you're a doctor or a lawyer.

To paraphrase Brecht, art is not the mirror we hold to society, it's the hammer with which we use to shape it. That's what we do with art. We shape society. It's undeniable the importance of that.


BV: What's next for you?
AM: I'm co-producing a romantic comedy, titled 'Holiday in Africa.' We are in production right now. I'm the lead, and it's a character-driven piece about finding love but looking for it in all the wrong places. Nzinga Blake is producing it with me. I'm excited about it.



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