police brutality

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by Brittany Dawson

My first kiss: We stood in the back parking lot of the mall. Donned in an apron slathered with chunky patches of dried flour and salt, I reeked of butter, pretzel dough, and curiosity. Working at a pretzel kiosk reaped its reward; I saw my prize waiting in front of my car, wearing a timid smile, long-sleeve checkered flannel, and dark washed jeans from American Eagle.

by Inda Lauryn

If we were to believe anything we hear and see in the media, then we would believe that no one wants to be with black women, not even black men. If we were to believe another myth the media perpetuates, then we would believe that single black women are a pretty desperate lot. Understandably, black women (single or not) are more than tired and frustrated with being given the short end of the stick when it comes to our perceived desirability and this unnecessary dissection of our relationships.

by Hilary Christian

The holidays can be a time of joy and love, as many celebrate with friends and family, making preparations, and getting in on all the holiday cheer. But for others, this time of year can be extremely stressful. Some may struggle with depression or financial woes, while others may be away from loved ones and find themselves alone with no plans. And then there are those who aren’t necessarily religious, so they miss out on the “holiness” of the season. No matter what category you fall into, you don’t have to feel overwhelmed. Here are nine ways to cope during what can be a difficult holiday season.

A Maryland woman who was shot Saturday morning by the man who shot and killed two New York Police Department Officers Saturday afternoon has been identified, officials said.

by Kareema El-Amin

I am a single, saved, 40-something woman who is waiting until marriage to have sex. And yes, I think about having sex at least a hundred times throughout the day.

by Saaraa Bailey

Trigger warning: sexual assault, rape culture, misogyny

Last month’s Rolling Stone story, “A Rape on Campus: A Brutal Assault and Struggle for Justice at UVA,” centered around a wide-eyed and ambitious college freshman named Jackie. Enjoying her blossoming collegiate career, Jackie was excited to embark on her first campus party, attending as the date of a member of the hosting Phi Kappa Psi fraternity. This night would end in tragedy, with Jackie being raped by multiple men. The once wide-eyed freshman would feel the gradual dimming of the light in her eyes—her innocence and infatuation a thing of the past due to the violence she suffered that night.

by Tamar Levin

The president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Shirley Ann Jackson, was the nation’s highest-paid president of a private college in 2012, with total compensation of $7,143,312 — almost twice as much as the next most highly compensated president — according to The Chronicle of Higher Education’s annual pay survey.

by Diana Veiga

In 2013, I won the Go On Girl! Book Club’s (the largest book club for Black women) Unpublished Writer’s Award for my submitted story, “Neighborhood Watch.” I was invited to attend their annual convention in Atlantic City to receive my award and say a few words. While at the podium I looked out into the crowd of Black women from all over the country of varying shades, ages, and backgrounds. Among all these differences, one thing was clear: they were all beaming back at me with pride.

by Candace Simpson

2014 has been one for the books, in terms of the progress Black women made – and the backlash they received. Despite their success as primetime TV’s leading ladies, the world called Viola Davis “less classically beautiful”, posted memes about Olivia Pope being the “side ho role model”, and argued that “Annie” should never have been “black-washed.” And yet, it has been an incredible year for Black women and girls. Here are five things we’ve learned about how the world sees us in 2014… and what we learned about ourselves in the process.

by Neisha Washington

In light of the recent passing of Titi Branch, entrepreneur and founder of Miss Jessie’s, due to a reported suicide, many have called for elevating the discussion of black women’s mental health into the wider consciousness. The story of black women and mental health is a difficult one to tell. It is not pretty. It is not poetic. It is something that requires stripping down to the bare bones of intersectionality and oppression. It is a story often told by examining the reasons for the silence in our communities, schools, and homes. It will take a toll on the myths of strength that black women have told ourselves to survive.

by Brittany Dawson

Courtesy of the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, every Wednesday is considered Hip Hop Wednesday at the University of South Carolina. A pleasing mixture of current radio hits to 90s throwback jams blare across Greene Street, a popular hub for Carolina students to unwind before and after class. Athletes, members of Black Greek Letter Organizations, and other Carolina students dance, catch up with friends, and chatter during this time. What makes Hip Hop Wednesday so empowering and unique to the university is its ability to encourage mingling of students of diverse ethnicities, genders, and religions: we all gather and enjoy the music together. Hip Hop Wednesday is a staple of the Carolina community.

by Raisa Habersham

Chris Rock has been on the press junket circuit in support of his upcoming movie “Top Five,” a story about a comedian’s rise to stardom while dealing with the pressures of fame. In addition to promoting his film, the comedian has spoken on several topics from Ferguson to Bill Cosby. And now, the state of Black Hollywood can be added to that list.

by Ariel C. Williams

Two weeks ago, Sasha and Malia Obama were criticized like every black girl has been and will be, when a GOP communications director Elizabeth Lauten attempted to publicly shame the First Daughters in a post on her personal Facebook page.

By Theresa Seiger for

Hiawayi (pronounced like the state, Hawaii) Robinson, the 8-year-old girl found dead behind an abandoned building in September, died of "homicidal violence" at the hands of her father, Mobile County District Attorney Ashley Rich said at a news conference on Tuesday.

by Stacey Patton for Dame Magazine 

Since the spate of murders by police of unarmed Black men, we are finally engaging in one of the most emotionally charged dialogues in this country, one we’ve long dreaded and therefore shirked: Americans are talking about race, and doing so as honestly as we can. But we can no longer avoid it after witnessing over and over the blatant inequality of policing and the failure to prosecute the officers who murdered Mike Brown and Eric Garner, which has made it painfully obvious that our nation has deliberately failed to uphold its laws to protect all citizens equally.

by Tierra C. 

As a black woman, who also happens to be member of a historically black sorority, I’m confused about and in awe of the elitism of my peers. After years and years of Love & Hip Hop, Basketball Wives, and other Monday night foolery on VH1, now you all want to be upset at VH1’s portrayal of black women because it finally hits home? Really? Wake up.

by Dalila Thomas

When is the last time you heard someone say, “I’m trying to spend my money?” Exactly.

But trying save money is usually the story of everyone’s life. Saving money is not an easy feat. And many people neglect the fact that a lot of spending happens during the work week. But don’t get discouraged, there are ways save a dollar or two Monday through Friday.

by Bee Quammie

“There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” —Zora Neale Hurston

Ever since I read that particular Zora Neale Hurston quote, I’ve used it on my birthday and at the close of each year to reflect and measure how far I’ve come. Here we are at the end of another year. While thoughts will soon shift to 2015 goals, resolutions, and vision boards, it’s imperative that we each take time for reflection.