After nine months, an officer charged


The issue of black lives matter and police shootings is extremely prevalent in today’s society.

After shooting an unarmed caretaker, a North Miami police officer will face criminal charges.

Officer Jonathan Aledda was arrested and charged on Wednesday, April 12. with attempted manslaughter and a misdemeanor of culpable negligence.

Aledda shot and wounded a behavioral therapist who was laying on his back on the ground with his hands up in the air, begging officers not to shoot.

This was caught on video by a nearby bystander.

This was an off-duty shooting.

Miami-Dade State attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle has concluded that Aledda was more than 150 feet away from caretaker Charles Kinsley. Two other officers were about 20 feet away and did not feel threatened.

According to a press release, Aledda was not even close enough to be in the position to assess the situation and shoot.

Prosecutors have been discussing this for months and confirmed that Aledda’s shots were unjustified.

Many people believe that Aledda shot the wrong target and was trying to shoot the autistic man because he believed he had weapons and was a threat to Kinsley.

This case is resurfacing, but is very confusing. Why did this cop shoot this man and was there a valid reason?

He should be charged for no reason, because essentially he shot an innocent man and he was too far away to even see what this man was doing and if he was a threat.

The news media have covered this in a very interesting way because there is no way of telling exactly what happened.

Some people think that the police officer was just protecting himself, but other people believe that it was way more than that and it should be an influential case in the black lives matter movement.

Miami Open home has uncertain future


The Miami Open is a major attraction for the professional tennis world and, especially, it takes place in one of Miami’s most appealing regions, Key Biscayne.

This year, the open was held from March 20 to April 2.

The 12-day tournament had athletes such as Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Venus Williams, but some missed out this year due to injuries including Serena Williams and Andy Murray.

Federer and Nadal ended up competing for the win of the tournament for a chance to win $7 million. Federer came out on top.

The Miami Open itself draws in huge amounts of tourist action, including my family and I.

The venue was so packed, you could hardly get in and out on a good day, but this means lots of money for the area and lots of money that goes to other local attractions due to the high volume of people that attend the Miami Open.

This may be the reason behind the rumors of the venue possibly being moved to places like China and let other March tournaments that draw larger crowds in like the ones in California.

It began with a stalled plan to upgrade the complex, which caused the tournament to decline in prestige and raise uncertainty about its future.

But, the Miami Open still draws most of the world’s top players, along with more than 300,000 spectators each year. But the future of the event has been in question since a 2015 appeals court decision that prevents improvements to the Key Biscayne facility.

There has been little investment in the property since, causing growing complaints from sponsors and players that the facilities have slipped behind Indian Wells in California and other events.

Problems begin arising such as complaints about locker rooms, bathrooms, crowded grounds and the temporary second stadium.

For 31 years the tournament has been held on Key Biscayne, a picturesque island across Biscayne Bay from downtown Miami. There is talk of it possibly moving to Hard Rock Stadium.

For now, it is here to stay unless something is decided otherwise.

As far as news reporting goes, I had absolutely no idea that this was even an issue and that there was talk about the Miami Open not happening again in the future.

When I looked up “Miami Open News,” the only thing that came was “Nadal vs. Federer Once Again” and their match. That was it. Not even who won the women’s match. Only the men’s. I had to scroll down very very far to find this story.

Once I searched to read about the Miami Open in jeopardy, nothing came up. I had to look up Miami Open moving to even get a couple of articles.

Only local papers were taking care of the issue or so it seemed. The initial story where I found out this information on Fox was one of the only ones that was covered by a sports news site.

All in all, there were only less than 10 newspapers that covered the story, which I don’t think is very good.

Coachella takes over weekend


Coachella begins today, April 14, 2017 in Indio, Calif. It’s an annual festival that celebrates music, food, art, and humanity. Coachella celebrates music from multiple genres — rock, indie, hiphop, and electronic dance music. This year it will be featuring artists such as  Kendrick Lamar and Lady Gaga.

This festival originated in 1993, when it was just a concert in protest to venues controlled by Ticketmaster. The actual Coachella festival started in October 1999 by Paul Tollett and Rick Van Santen. It has now become an internationally known music and arts festival with celebrities attending this three-day event.

There’s food to be eaten, music to be heard, and art to be admired at Coachella. More than 100 food vendors and well over 100 well-known and emerging music artists attract individuals from all ages to hang out and even sleepover in the Colorado Desert.

Not a lot of coverage from any news media outlets have been given to Coachella. There has been advertising and a few articles from the Los Angeles Times and ABC News to inform readers about this legendary event.

I think most coverage will be done during the festival and after the weekend is finished. There will most likely be articles about who performed, how they performed, and updates on what celebrities attended the music and arts festival.

Reporters miss point with United story


Amid the controversy surrounding the United Airlines passenger who was aggressively dragged off an overbooked United flight a few days ago, a flurry of misinformation has surrounded the identity of the passenger.

Soon after videos of the passenger, not yet identified as Dr. David Dao, being dragged off the plane emerged on the web, news media outlets set out to determine the identity of the passenger. This led to some confusion over there being two Dr. Dao’s, one from Kentucky who had a questionable past, and one from Louisiana.

Reports identifying the passenger as Dr. Dao from Kentucky surfaced and soon news outlets and social media feeds alike were buzzing with commentary over the passenger’s salacious backstory as a doctor who had his medical license suspended for illegally prescribing painkillers, including in exchange for sex.

Questions about the identity of which Dr. Dao was on the plane circulated, with many on social media frustrated at traditional news outlets for reporting on the doctor’s past at all.

The story that should have been the focus of news reporting was simply the mistreatment of a passenger on an overbooked flight; his past was not relevant to the story. Focusing reporting on the doctor’s criminal record serves as an attempt to shift responsibility from United Airlines to the passenger.

Unfortunately, shifting blame to the victim is not unusual in the news cycle, something that has been evidenced through the news coverage of many police brutality stories.

The story was not about the doctor’s past mistakes, but rather should have been about the mistakes made by the airline in their treatment of passengers, the involvement of the law enforcement officer and a discussion of unfair policies practiced by airlines that hurt customers.

Marlins-Mets game creates headaches


It was a long night on the diamond and in newsrooms, too, last night.

The New York Mets beat the Florida Marlins 9-8 in a 16-inning bout.

Miami scored their eight runs in five innings, bringing the score to 8-7 going into the sixth. The offensive onslaught between the two National League East teams slowed down as only the Mets scored two runs in the next 10 innings.

Coverage of a game that ran until around one in the morning was troublesome who were not sitting in the stands.

Newspapers, such as The Miami Herald, have to run on strict deadlines for their print publications. Last night’s game hurt many newspaper traditionalists.

On the front page of the sports section in The Herald lays a story of Marlins Owner Jeffrey Loria’s plan to erect a statue of the late Jose Fernandez outside of Marlins Park. What is missing for the reader that walks to their driveway grabbing their plastic bag-covered newspaper in the morning, is an article from the game of their baseball team’s favorite game.

Frustrated, readers may perceive this as a lack of effort or a mistake from the newspaper and look down upon their subscribed publication. But it is not their fault.

To their credit, the lead story on the sports tab on The Herald’s website is the article about the game from the beat writer, Andre Fernandez.

There are extraneous situations that occur in sports that simply do not meet publication’s deadline for print. The Miami Herald did not want what happened to the Boston Globe during the Super Bowl coverage and run an edition of a newspaper with the wrong information and that was the smart move.

’13 Reasons Why’ addresses teen issues


Netflix released its new original series “13 Reasons Why” last Friday and, yes, I binge-watched it. The series is based on the best-selling book by Jay Asher, which follows around Clay Jensen and his quest to uncover the truth about why his friend and crush, Hannah Baker, committed suicide.

The series starts off with Clay coming home to a mysterious box with his name on it. Inside the box, are cassette tapes recorded by Hannah leaving detailed stories dedicated to specific people about why she decided to take her life. If you haven’t watched it yet, I highly recommend that you do. It’s a great show and will definitely pull at your heart strings with its intense emotional content.

Personally, I think this series is great and I’m glad it’s generating a lot of buzz because it sheds a lot of light about the issues teenagers deal with everyday in high school. It gives you a real portrayal of how high school can be for some students. It shows just how bad things can get between bullying, friendships that end in betrayal, rumors, and loneliness. Basically all things that pushed Hannah to take her own life.

If you have a heart and soul, than you can definitely empathize with Hannah Baker’s tragic decision, and Clay’s need to try to make things right for her even though it is already too late.

This story shows that each of us need to hold ourselves accountable to being a good person, because we never know what a person is going through or how much they can take. I don’t want to give away anything for those who haven’t watched it, but this story can definitely serve as a fictional cautionary tale about why we need to treat others with kindness and respect.

British Vogue appoints new top editor


Just a month after the death of Franca Sozzani, Vogue Italia’s long-time editor-in-chief, the editor-in-chief of British Vogue, Alexandra Shulman, resigned from her post after 25 years.

Shulman’s resignation was announced during Paris Fashion Week, leaving the magazine’s publishing company, Conde Nast, scrambling to find her replacement amid the chaos of the industry’s busiest time of the year.

However, two days ago British Vogue announced it found her replacement — Edward Enninful, 45. Making him the first nonwhite man to take on the responsibility of editing one of the most powerful women’s fashion publications in the world in the magazine’s 100-year history.

Enninful is a smart choice due to his years of experience in the industry, beginning as a model for i-D magazine he was 16 and becoming the magazine’s fashion editor at just 18.

After working 20 years for i-D magazine, Enninful became the creative and fashion director of Conde Nast’s W magazine, using his unique vision to raise the publication’s popularity and revenue.

Enninful also worked as a contributing editor to Vogue Italia. He is credited for helping curate one of the magazine’s most famous issues, “The Black Issue,” which featured only black models and was so popular Conde Nast had to print 400,000 additional copies.

Two years ago, Enninful was awarded the Isabella Blow Award for Fashion Creator at the British Fashion Awards. The prize commemorates outstanding people in the fashion industry for their contributions to the sector.

Not only is Enninful a powerful figure in the fashion industry, but a recognized advocate for diversity. Last year, Queen Elizabeth II honored him, as part of her birthday honors, for his efforts in diversifying the fashion industry.

Due to Enninful’s charismatic presence and passion for the industry, he has friends in all aspects of the sector. Taking fashion icons Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell as dates to the Met Gala and standing next to Michelle Obama in Instagram photos are but a few examples.

His well-rounded Rolodex of connections will be very useful and important when he takes on the role of editor in chief of British Vogue Aug. 1.

NBA competition changes for worse


Eleven years ago, 2006, was a great year for basketball. The NBA playoffs came around and almost every team in the 16-team bracket had a legit shot at winning a title.

Young stars like Dwyane Wade, Lebron James and Tayshaun Prince were split apart. Seasoned veterans like Kobe Bryant, Shaq, Steve Nash and Dirk Nowitzki were all on separate teams fighting for the NBA crown.

There was no “Big 3” that came together via free agency. The teams featured in the playoffs were not teams who constantly tanked either. It was great basketball to watch. The Heat were a No. 2 seed when they won the East. The Mavericks were fourth seed in the West.

Nowadays, we are lucky to see a No. 2 seed even compete in the conference finals. In 2007, an eighth-seeded Golden State Warriors upset the No. 1 seeded Dallas Mavericks. There was parity in a once fun league.

The worst part is the news media chooses to make this acceptable. The news media have made it seem like this is the new norm. Glorifying teams like Philadelphia for tanking and playing the lottery. Or praising the Cavs for luring Lebron back with shiny players like Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love.

Fast forward to present day. The league is filled with 18 to 19 year old kids who are not ready to be in a man’s league. Imagine being a 19-year-old guarding Lebron James. I am sure it is not too pleasant. The NBA was once a fun league that had diversity. It was fun to watch knowing that anyone could win a seven-game series. Hopefully we see that day where teams do not tank to try and win. Hopefully the league will be as fun as that 2006 season.

WNBA draft selects next pros


The 2017 WNBA draft landed a remarkable number of professional athletes on April 13.

Kelsey Plum went first in the WNBA draft Thursday. Then, South Carolina took over. Plum was taken No. 1 by the San Antonio Stars. Plum finished her college career with an NCAA-record 3,527 points.

“I’ve been dreaming about it for so long,” Plum said. “I’m really excited and grateful for the opportunity and will make the most of it.”

Nearly every known sports news outlet has covered a story about Washington guard Kelsey Plum. For example ESPN, USA Today, Seattle Times and many more immediately began writing detailed interest stories about the elite guard.

Throughout the time leading up to the day of the WNBA draft a ton of predictions have been made by many websites such as “Doc Sports” and “ODDSHARK.” These predictions along with social media outlets has put a ton of stress and pressure on the student-athletes seeking an opportunity to play professionally.

As the South Carolina Lady Gamecocks are coming off a National Championship, they also had three elite athletes enter the WNBA draft this year. One Lady Gamecock, Alaina Coates, recently had surgery regarding an ankle injury got drafted in the first round as the second overall pick.

After sitting out last season due to the NCAA transfer rules, Allisha Gray was drafted as the 4th overall pick in the first round. Lastly, Kaela Davis topped it off for the Gamecocks as the 10th overall pick in the first round.

One of our very own Lady Canes, Adrienne Motley was drafted as the 32nd overall pick in the third round. The Miami Herald, Sun Sentinel, The ACC, and Daily Press all covered Motley. Local news media outlets are looking to do interviews and reach out to her to gain more detailed feedback about Motley’s reactions and feeling to being drafted to the Indiana Fever.

Tommi Lahren sues The Blaze


Tommi Lahren is an outspoken conserve commentator that formally worked for Glenn Beck and has filed suit against The Blaze for ” wrongful termination.”

“The suit, filed in Texas Friday, alleges that Beck and The Blaze got rid of Lahren and her nightly talk show due to her making pro-choice comments on “The View” last month,” CNN reported.

Her comment on the view was “I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say I’m for limited government, but I think the government should decide what women do with their bodies,” she said on the broadcast.

It was because of this comment that she was let go from her job and was informed that she would have no more shows.

She is not one to do nothing about it so she exclaimed in a tweet that “playing dead,” isn’t her style so she has decided to sue for wrongful termination.

Lahren may not have a lot of people on her side, but she will stop at nothing to get her voice heard.

She is certainly relentless and her strong conservative beliefs will take charge as she tries to win her case on wrongful termination.

Whether or not this is news is debatable, however her comment on the view caused a lot of uproar as it can be considered extremely inappropriate or even incorrect.

Trump tweets change news coverage


“Mr. Trump said on Twitter,” has become a common way to source quotations from the President of the United States. In an article regarding the missile strike ordered by the president on Syria Thursday night, The New York Times referenced a tweet from President Trump from 2013.

The tweet read, “President Obama, do not attack Syria. There is no upside and tremendous downside. Save your ‘powder’ for another (and more important) day!”

The president’s extensive use of Twitter has thrown political pundits and news media professionals for a loop. His tweets have been regarded differently by different audiences.

Some insist his tweets are largely hyperbolic in nature; others assert that when the president tweets, that is an official statement and should be regarded as such.
Regardless of how the tweets are interpreted, they’re out there. It seems for nearly every comment Trump makes, one of his tweets surfaces. Oftentimes, they’re contradictory, uninformed, and inflammatory.

Since taking office, Trump’s tweets have been even more deeply analyzed. Many expressed concern when the timeline of Trump’s tweets on April 3 made clear that the president spent close to three hours watching Fox News that morning.

Beginning at 3:15 a.m., Trump tweeted, “Such amazing reporting on unmasking and the crooked scheme against us by @foxandfriends. ‘Spied on before nomination.’ The real story.”

He posted three more tweets, each of which correlated to coverage on Fox News at the time. This continued until 5:51 a.m.

“@FoxNews from multiple sources: “There was electronic surveillance of Trump, and people close to Trump. This is unprecedented.” @FBI,” Mr. Trump said on Twitter.

Rolling Loud festival in jeopardy


Miami’s Bayfront Park is planned to be the home of the new hip-hop music festival Rolling Loud. Headliners, such as Kendrick Lamar, Future and Lil Wayne, are planned to perform in early May.

The entertainment agency, Dope Entertainment, that is producing the music festival is continuing to act as if the festival is still on, although there is talk the public agency that manages Bayfront Park is considering cancelling the event.

The initial discussion of cancelling the festival started with Frank Carollo, chairman of the Bayfront Park Management Trust, since the event was approved without his knowing or the consent of the board.

There will be a meeting held on April 11, where the trust will be voting whether to cancel the music festival or not.

As of now, Rolling Loud has not broken any rules of its agreement, so it’s harder for the committee to cancel the event .

Miami residents have always complained about the noise and trash that the electronic dance music festival Ultra brings downtown and don’t want another weekend filled with noisy music festival-goers dirtying up the city.

The Miami Herald has done a sufficient job on reporting about this music festival. It has discussed both parties’ concerns and the logistics behind music festivals. As of right now, this story only pertains to the Miami area, but if the festival is to be cancelled, there is going to need to be more coverage so that the public knows.

Ultra keeps off news radar this year


One of Miami’s most well known music festival has come and gone once again.

This music festival is the Miami version of Coachella, Lollapalooza and other nationally known music gatherings.

March 23, 24 and 25 were the magical days of Ultra this year.

The festival itself is based around EDM (electronic dance music), making it the ultimate hot spot for shinny body suits, swim suits, very little clothing, very questionable clothing and every color you can possibly imagine.

This year, Ultra held it’s concert at Bayfront park with its multiple-stage layout in the middle of downtown Miami, bringing in more than 165,000 people from 60 different countries.

With a lineup featuring world-class talent, unbelievable production, and fans from around the world, Ultra was set for success. Some headliners were Major Lazer, Alan Walker, DJ Snake and Justice and many more.

The 218 performers drew in sold out tickets ranging from $300 to $1,300 for the three-day VIP ticket.

It is very interesting because the news media didn’t really cover anything on Ultra. If it weren’t for half of the students at my school attending this festival, I wouldn’t know much about it.

Even when I Google stories on it, it’s kind of just reviews on EDM music websites saying what it was about and how well they did.

There was also nothing really to report about. According to one article there were only 35 arrests this year, which was 50 percent lower than previous years and only 50 people had to be transported to the hospital.

I guess reporters decided that Ultra Music Festival wasn’t interesting enough to cover and nothing super exciting or newsworthy happened.

It’s time for Lavar Ball to be quiet


If you’re a college basketball fan, you saw the tremendous skill set of freshman Lonzo Ball this season at UCLA.

Ball was one of the best players in the nation and has already declared for the 2017 NBA draft and is currently projected to be a top three pick.

However, it isn’t Lonzo who is making headlines for his play on the court.

His father Lavar is taking the spotlight from his son and running with it.

Day after day, Lavar is on talk show after talk show, makes appearances on ESPN and other sports outlets just talking up a storm making preposterous claims.

The news media keep gobbling it up like it were turkey on Thanksgiving Day.

News media outlets love having Lavar Ball talk on their shows because he brings a controversial opinion, which generates viewers. However, enough is enough. I understand it is a business, but this is bad journalism.

Ball doesn’t bring any relevant sports topics to the forefront. He just makes claims about how his sons are the greatest in the world and that he could beat Michael Jordan 1-on-1.

Anyone’s dad would say their son is the best, why do you need to put an arrogant man on the air?

It baffles me that media outlets would rather have that man on the air or as the lead stories rather than an top line analyst grade talent. Putting Lavar Ball on the air cuts into the content sports fans are looking to see.

Lavar it is time for you to be quiet and let your son play ball.

MLB tries international branding


There is nothing better than the sound of the crack of the bat and a bag of peanuts being opened.

The sounds of opening day bring joy to many ears and has become not only a country wide phenomena, but a global one as well. What is different from back then to now though? It really is a simple answer: the coverage by the news media.

Events like the World Baseball Classic bring so much national attention to the sport and other countries love it. Although the event is held in the United States, it involves countries that predominantly play baseball.

ESPN and the MLB, along with their own network, have done a fantastic job of coverage as far as international baseball has gone. They have shown tremendous love to players like Ichiro and they help not only the player brand themselves but the sport.

Brexit ‘diet’ arises as snacks get smaller


What if you were to pay the same amount of money that you usually pay for a bag of M&Ms, but with fewer M&Ms? Well, this is happening in Britain and not only with M&Ms. Because of Brexit, big American food companies have acted under pressure in accordance with the decreasing value of the pound, by diminishing the sizes of their products but leaving it at the same price.

The term Brexit comes from Britain’s decision to exit the European Union. The voting was held June 23 last year and the decision of leaving Europe was a very close call as “exit” won by 51.9 percent to 48.1 percent.

Since June, the pound has dropped 17 percent against the U.S. dollar. This is changing foreign exchange rates and is impacting the cost of commodities, such as ingredients and materials, increasing the price of imported goods such as food and electronics.

The chocolate industry seems to be one of the most impacted, as cocoa is priced in dollars and so producers in the U.K. pay more.

The process of shrinking the packages or decreasing the amount of the product in the packages is called “Shrinkflation.” Firms use shrinkflation hoping that their consumers do not notice, in fact, most of the time consumers do not seem to check the quantity or weight of the product on the packages.

Companies such as PepsiCo and Mars have been downsizing their products to make up for the decrease in values of the pound, which is why reporters in news articles have been calling this situation “Brexit Diet.”

For example, the 160 grams bag of M&Ms has been downsized to a 145 grams bag of M&Ms, but has remained the same price. Another example is the bags of Doritos, Tostitos, and Fritos, which now have 20 percent fewer chips than before but at the same price.

The retail sales have dropped significantly in the U.K. for three consecutive months. Many articles seem to focus mostly on how companies are decreasing the packaging, but not the impact that this is having on the British economy.

There doesn’t seem to be as much coverage on American news sites on this issue. The few American articles that do feature this topic, lack to mention how Brexit and how these current events also impact the American economy. Yes, the dollar is getting stronger, but this only makes American products more expensive outside the country, making them less attractive in the U.K.

Lady Gamecocks win NCAA title


One of the big stories in sports this week is the South Carolina Lady Gamecocks winning their first national basketball championship. After losing a prime piece to their team, 6-foot-4 Alaina Coates, the Lady Gamecocks were not expected to make such a run in the NCAA tournament.

The Portland Press Herald covered South Carolina’s history-making debut. The article mentioned how Dawn Staley, SC’s head coach, had never earned a national championship while playing for four years for Virginia. She also coached the Gamecocks to the national semifinals two years ago before losing to Notre Dame.

“You have to give tribute to the former players,” Staley said in the story. “Go back to my Temple days, they believed in our vision. We took that vision to South Carolina, and that vision was we’ll be national champions. If you stick with us and if you’re disciplined, if you believe, all these players believed in that. Happy our words came true to them.”

USA Today also published coverage on the record-breaking team. The article discussed how Mississippi State had all the momentum on its side after a shocking win over UConn on Friday night that ended the Huskies’ record 111-game winning streak. MSU was expected to pull off another upset, however, the Bulldogs fell short. explained how this women’s basketball team has built its reputation on defense. The stellar defensive effort propelled the team past a nine-point halftime deficit in the Final Four.

“So, we were fortunate to be down nine,” Staley said. “But I just wanted to get our kids to the locker room at halftime because I knew, no matter how many points we were down, we could utilize our speed to get back into play — whether that’s trapping in the half court, whether that’s picking up full court, whether that’s coming off ball screens, setting our players up in positions where they could be effective.”

ESPN also covered this story in which Staley described her emotions the night she was crowned a national champion versus the emotion she felt in 1992 after losing her senior year in the semi-finals.

“I was exhausted, because I wanted it so much,” Staley said. “I put so much work and energy into being a national champion that the emotion was just to cry. To let it out. And 25 years later, no tears. Just going to enjoy it.”

New Marvel superhero is lesbian Latina


Marvel’s newest comic-series is all about America Chavez, an 18-year-old college student who studies, hangs out with friends and fights evil aliens all in her signature gold hoops.

America is the first lesbian Latina superhero with her own comic series, making Marvel one of the most diverse comic book publishers.

Marvel also features comics of diverse protagonists like Muslim Mr. Marvel, an African-American Iron Man and a female Thor.

What is different about America Chavez’s comic, is that her writer, Gabby Rivera is herself a lesbian Latina.

Rivera, 34, is Puerto Rican and a proud member of the LGBTQ community.

While she did not set-out to be a comic book writer, her novel “Juliet Takes a Breath,” about a lesbian, Puerto Rican teen, was picked up by a Marvel editor and later became the basis for the comic series.

America first appeared fighting in across dimensions in Marvel’s “Vengeance” in 2011, now in 2017, she has her own popular comic series.

With the rise in political tension and threatened Hispanic community, America’s character seems all the more appropriate.

To keep up with her growing audience and popularity of America, Rivera has been learning more and more about comic writing, forming America’s identity as both a Latina and a lesbian.

Lamar under scrutiny with ‘Humble’


Seven-time Grammy award winner, Kendrick Lamar, is under scrutiny for his new rap song, “Humble.”

The music video to “Humble” was released last week. The lyrics read “I’m so f***in’ sick and tired of the Photoshop, show me somethin’ natural like the afro on Richard Pryor, show me somethin’ natural like ass with some stretch marks.” The music video mirrors the lyrics with images of a black woman with a bare face and stretch marks.

Unhappy women took to scrutinizing Lamar over these lyrics on Twitter. Stating that “black women are not here for your visual or sexual pleasure.” And that this song is “just another example of Black men giving women directives on how to present themselves to the world based on what men find attractive.”

However, in a world where we as women feel incredible pressure to live up to advertisements, magazines and our favorite billion-dollar bodied celebs, could Lamar just be telling us to love ourselves the way we are?

Many women are ashamed of stretch marks, afraid to wear their hair natural, and are too insecure to walk out of the house without makeup. And while wearing weave or extensions, makeup or deciding to get rid of your stretch marks doesn’t make you any less of a woman … embracing natural beauty doesn’t make you any less of a woman either.

In fact, I don’t believe that Lamar was victimizing or demeaning women who aren’t natural, but rather pointing out Photoshop means being something online or in print that you are not in person. Pointing out that Photoshop being a cheap quick fix for what one deems a flaw or a personal insecurity that puts unrealistic beauty standards on women.

In 2014, The Renfrew Center conducted a survey that said that 48 percent of adults Photoshop their pictures before posting them online. In 2015, that went up to 68 percent and recently Snapchat just posted an article speaking about Photoshop’s impact on body image in young people stating that more than 80 percent of images we see online are retouched in some way.

There have been many campaigns embracing body image in women such as Lane Bryant’s “I’m No Angel” campaign, Dove’s “Redefine beauty”, Aerie “Aerie Real” the “Body Gossip” campaign. These all embrace women of all colors, heights, sizes, ages, and so forth.

Specifically, Dove’s “Redefine Beauty” campaign took middle school aged girls and had them pick something they normally hide about themselves in a selfie, embrace it, and post it. It also ignited discussion between the daughters and mothers.

Lamar is stating in his song for women to embrace themselves without the unrealistic beauty standards Photoshop sets, just as these campaigns are. And he deserves credit, not scrutiny.

Students arrested for prostitution


University of Miami students Acacia Friedman, 23, and Maury Noun, 21, along with Florida International University student Samara Charlotin, 19, were arrested last week after Friedman and Noun were surprised by an undercover cop.

This all took place at the at the Colonnade Hotel. The undercover policeman then asked them to verify “what he was getting” for the money he handed over and, while at first, the women said that it would be a “hang out,” they did agree that there would be sex with a condom.

Both women were charged for prostitution. Charlotin was also charged with possession of one gram of cannabis and one Oxycodone pill. Noun was hit with a charge of aiding and abetting.

Judge Mindy Glazer ordered Charlotin in court on Thursday to stay away from the other two, saying, “You’re a smart girl, and if you want to see age 20, you need to find a new line of employment. A very risky thing you are doing, alright, for someone with a lot of potential such as yourself. You need to stay away from them.”

Noun met with the undercover officer at the restaurant at the hotel. He then directed his girls to a room after the officer paid the $3,000. Noun was arrested on charges including deriving proceeds from prostitution.

Every local news station featured the story on their evening newscast, including NBC6, CBS4, Fox Channel 7 and ABC Channel 10.