Status Updates posted by richardmurray
Former NBA player talks about cannabis business
By Spectrum News Staff New York City
PUBLISHED 6:30 PM ET Mar. 19, 2023
Former NBA player Al Harrington said one of his motivations for becoming a cannabis entrepreneur is how pot helped his grandmother.
Harrington, who played for the New York Knicks and other teams across the country, joined NY1’s Dean Meminger Sunday to discuss his plan to expand his $100 million business Viola Brands into New York and New Jersey.
About 12 years ago, his grandmother took marijuana when she was suffering from glaucoma, an eye disease that can cause vision loss.
Harrington his grandmother was able to see words in the Bible for the first time in three years.
He said that once he saw what happened with his grandmother, he wanted "to change the way people would perceive the plant.”
Harrington said his other passions within the business includes diversity, inclusion and social equity.
Viola Brands started almost 12 years ago in Colorado. Since then, the company has expanded to Oregon, Michigan, California, Missouri, Maryland and Illinois.
“We try to educate as much as we can, right, because, you know, you think about people that come from our community, specifically people of color,” he said. “We’ve seen so much trauma, you know, from the cannabis plant.”
VIEW FULL INTERVIEW WITH DEAN MEMINGER
Full conversation with #cannabis entrepreneur and former #NBA player #AlHarrington about his successful #marijuana business. https://t.co/2xPRvZeXaV— Dean Meminger (@DeanMeminger) March 20, 2023
I want to add that pharmaceutical companies are taking New York State to court for providing assistance to Black people incarcerated for illegal marijuana possession with the approach of it being against free market capitalism, which is funny based on the second article at the following link < https://aalbc.com/tc/profile/6477-richardmurray/?status=2284&type=status > where the wealthiest in the usa are being protected from their failings in free market capitalism.
Mental Health Spotlight: Jasmine Marie, Founder of black girls breathing®
Jasmine Marie is a speaker, breathwork practitioner, and the founder of black girls breathing®. Her work is innovating the wellness, healthcare, and research industry by making mental health services accessible to Black women while filling in the gaps of data and research available on this underserved and underrepresented demographic. Marie plans to impact one million Black women and girls with her work by 2025. She is a serial founder with a past life in global haircare brand marketing and an alum of NYU Stern. The impact and range of her work to date is expansive—ranging from underserved minority communities to stressed-out college students and executives. She’s brought her expertise to elite colleges such as Harvard Business School, Columbia University, and Cornell University, and her client list includes corporations such as Estée Lauder Companies, Under Armour, Capital One, Ford Motor Company, Facebook, and Twitter. Marie has been featured in Oprah Magazine, Good Morning America, VOGUE, Forbes, Harper’s Baazar, Marie Claire, Glamour, Nylon Mag, Wall Street Journal, and Black Enterprise, to name a few.
What is black girls breathing®? And why was it created?
black girls breathing® is a safe space for Black women to manage their mental and emotional health and heal trauma in their bodies with breathwork and community.
I created black girls breathing® after finishing my breathwork training and seeing so few facilitators that looked like me yet knowing how much chronic stress and trauma (generational, societal, etc.) and decided to create it. I used my background in business to help me develop a model where we could provide this work accessibly.
Do you have any secret hobbies, skills, or interests?
I don’t think I have any secret hobbies but for a while, I would always feel embarrassed whenever anyone asked that question, as a lot of my hobbies can maybe seem boring to others lol. But I love to read. Reading is one of my favorite hobbies. I love having quiet time…any activity that allows me to feel refreshed, sit with my own thoughts and enjoy my solitude. I think because I deal with so many people’s energy that in my spare time, I just like to spend time with self. I love to cook though…it’s a very meditative activity for me that allows me to unwind from my day.
How did you get started in this work? And why is it important to you?
As mentioned above, after my breathwork training, I realized there were so few Black breathworkers. But before that, I found breathwork while being stressed out after graduating from business school at NYU and working in beauty in NYC. My nervous system was so fried I began having physical symptoms…rashes and an inability to sleep. The doctor would see me and always say, “This is stress. How can you reduce your stress?” Fast forward to me finding my first breathwork class and falling in love with the way it allowed me to just feel more space in my mind and body.
WOW — ONE MILLION Black women and girls breathing by 2025 what an ambitious goal! What impact do you see this having?
It is an ambitious goal, but in 2020, we fundraised $55k to make our work accessible for one year. After the year was done, it was so clear that we couldn’t stop there. So many Black women needed this work, and we would hear that over and over again. So I decided if I was going to do this work, I was only interested in creating real impact and a goal that would signify that. Imagining 1 Million Black women using breathwork as a tool to regulate their nervous systems, heal from compounded trauma and reduce the effect that chronic stress has in our community (health challenges linked to chronic stress: heart disease, high blood pressure, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, fertility issues, and the list goes on) will not only affect them but our community as a whole. Ending the passing down of generational trauma and normalizing healing.
What would you suggest to people who feel like they cannot find the time to breathe or practice mindfulness?
I would first affirm that it’s okay they feel that way. Western society has done a great job of making us feel that anything outside of productivity is not only a waste of time but the least important thing we should make space for. Making time for yourself for any mindful activity can be eased into and it can start with being more aware of the present moment and practicing that action on a daily. Maybe you create a routine where every morning for 3 minutes right when you get up, you take a moment to be still, notice your breathing pattern and focus on each and every inhale and exhale.
Why is Black representation important in this industry?
The wellness industry isn’t unlike other industries where Black representation is lacking. I think it’s important to see other Black women caring for themselves because, historically, we’ve been taught to do the opposite for oh so long.
Where do you find joy?
I find joy with my family and my loved ones, in intimate moments with friends, in good food and conversation, and in being able to create something and see it grow, shift, and evolve.
Want to learn more about black girls https://blackgirlsbreathing.tumblr.com/ ?
Check out their website, or their tumblr above, https://blackgirlsbreathing.com/
Breathe with us on March 27th @12pm EDT during their Mindful Monday Breathwork for Anxiety session on Tumblr Live
Ask black girls breathing all the questions on your mind for IssueTime on Navigating Anxiety in an increasingly digital, lonely world ; LINK->
Take the pledge with black girls breathing®
Michelle Yeoh and opportunity
Silicon Valley Bank and risk in fiscal capitalism
Tiktok and the war over who owns the internet
Maternity Deaths in the usa
Londonium, the roman name for london
The live streaming former elected official in japan
Michelle Yeoh with her historic trophy. She has roles lined up but no starring ones.Credit...Sinna Nasseri for The New York Times
After Her Oscar Win, Will Michelle Yeoh Get to Lead Again?
The historic victory should mean opportunities to star again, but too often after such milestones, Hollywood doesn’t find central roles for women of color.
By Kyle Buchanan
Published March 15, 2023
Updated March 17, 2023
We’re conditioned to think of an Oscar win as the endpoint to a journey. For some actors, holding that trophy is the realization of a dream held since childhood. For others, it’s the culmination of a well-deserved comeback.
But what happens after that win? In our eagerness to treat Oscar victories as career capstones, do we pay too little attention to the opportunities that are supposed to come afterward, yet often don’t?
I’ve been mulling that over since Sunday night, when Michelle Yeoh took the best actress Oscar for “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” It happened at the 95th edition of the Academy Awards, the kind of big, tantalizing milestone that prods you to contemplate what has come before, and Yeoh’s win proved especially historic: The first Asian star to win best actress, she was greeted onstage by Halle Berry, the first Black woman to have pulled off that feat.
Asking Berry to announce the winner with Jessica Chastain (the previous year’s winner) was a gamble twice over. If Yeoh had lost to one of her four competitors — all of whom were white women — the ensuing photo op would have served as a stark example of a best-actress category that has been hostile to women of color for 95 years. And though Berry has returned to the Oscars several times since her 2002 win for “Monster’s Ball,” it has always been as a presenter and never as a nominee. To see her there is to be reminded that an Oscar win carries no guarantees when an actress is already liable to receive fewer scripts and career opportunities than her white counterparts.
So though Yeoh’s triumph was a long time coming, and I teared up as she addressed “all the little boys and girls who look like me watching tonight,” I also found myself worrying that it won’t be enough. The people in the Dolby Theater looked awfully proud of themselves after Yeoh’s win, but if they really want to do right by her, they have to keep writing lead roles for 60-year-old Asian actresses; otherwise, it’s just empty back-patting.
That, after all, was the real breakthrough of “Everything Everywhere,” Yeoh told me in October. We were at an awards event where, flanked by the “Everything Everywhere” directors Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, she reminisced about a Hollywood career that had mostly been filled with supporting parts.
“Look, I’ve been very blessed — I’ve continuously worked, and I’ve worked with great directors,” she said. “But for the first time, I’m No. 1 on the call sheet, thanks to these guys. I do meaningful roles, like in ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ and ‘Shang-Chi,’ but it was not my movie.”
Yeoh said she hoped that “Everything Everywhere” would not be a one-off, but more than a year after the film’s release, it’s unclear when, or if, she will have another lead film role. Coming projects — including the big-screen musical “Wicked,” the third “Avatar” movie, and the ensemble mystery “A Haunting in Venice” — all consign her to supporting parts. Though she is a headline-making superstar who led the hip studio A24 to its biggest ever worldwide hit, Yeoh is still too often treated as additional casting rather than the main event.
“Even you, Michelle Yeoh — on the top of the world — has struggled to find the right roles,” Kwan told her when we met in October. “I think that has taken a lot of people by surprise.”
Yeoh laughed ruefully. “I read scripts and it’s the guy who goes off on some big adventure — and he’s going off with my daughter!” she said. “I’m like, no, no.”
Few Hollywood movies are conceived with a woman over 50 as the central character, and the ones that are greenlit tend to offer those leads to a triumvirate of white women: Meryl if she’s older, Cate if she’s younger and Tilda if she’s weirder. To ensure that Yeoh can be first on the call sheet again, filmmakers must think more creatively, as Kwan and Scheinert did when they revamped “Everything Everywhere” for Yeoh after conceiving the film as a Jackie Chan vehicle. (And while they’re at it, can they find something juicy for last year’s best supporting actor, Troy Kotsur, similarly a boundary breaker — with “CODA,” he became the first deaf man to win an acting Oscar — who has been seen in little since?)
As momentum in the best-actress race swung from the “Tár” star Cate Blanchett to Yeoh over the last few weeks of awards season, I kept hearing a common refrain from voters: While Blanchett already had two Oscars and would surely be nominated again — she has eight nominations overall — this could be Yeoh’s only chance at gold. Though I understand the practicality of that argument, I hope those voters understand that their job isn’t done simply because of how they marked their ballot. Yeoh’s Sunday-night win is a big one, but the real victory will come when the lead roles that had long eluded her grasp start to become commonplace. If Hollywood can make that so, then instead of an endpoint, Yeoh’s historic Oscar will serve as a long-needed new beginning.
Kyle Buchanan is a pop culture reporter and serves as The Projectionist, the awards season columnist for The Times. He is the author of “Blood, Sweat & Chrome: The Wild and True Story of Mad Max: Fury Road.” @kylebuchanan
A bank official trying to reassure worried depositors in 1933. Credit...Associated Press
The Silicon Valley Bank Rescue Just Changed Capitalism
March 15, 2023
By Roger Lowenstein
Mr. Lowenstein is a financial journalist and author of “When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long-Term Capital Management.”
After a career of writing about bank failures, I wound up in the middle of one when my bank, Silicon Valley Bank, was seized by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. On Saturday, when I tried to pay a bill online, I was greeted by this not very reassuring missive:
“This page will be unavailable throughout the weekend, but will resume next week in accordance with the guidance provided by the F.D.I.C.” I wasn’t truly worried; small depositors like me had long ago internalized the rule that it made no sense to worry about your bank’s condition, since the risks of failure were borne by the F.D.I.C.
Federal deposit insurance was introduced 90 years ago during the heart of the Great Depression. Ever since then, small depositors within the F.D.I.C. limit of coverage have slept soundly. Now, in light of the bank failures of the last few days and the F.D.I.C.’s extension of coverage, why will any depositor worry about risk? Having bailed out depositors of two banks in full, how will the government refuse others?
Established as part of the landmark Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation initially provided deposit insurance up to $2,500, supported by premiums from member banks. The act was written by two Democrats, Senator Carter Glass of Virginia and Representative Henry Steagall of Alabama. Steagall wanted to protect rural banks, which had many small depositors, from contagious panics.
In that era, banking “progressives” were centered in the heartland. During the 1920s, low farm prices led to waves of bank failures. Various states adopted insurance, but the statewide systems failed. Scores of bills for federal insurance were also introduced.
The idea was controversial. The president of the American Bankers Association protested that insuring deposits was “unsound, unscientific and dangerous.” It was opposed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt and by his Treasury secretary, William H. Woodin. Roosevelt opposed insurance because he thought it would be costly and also encourage bad behavior. If there was no need to mollify depositors, then banks would be free to take all sorts of risks. Today we call this “moral hazard.”
In 1933, an estimated 4,000 banks failed. Roosevelt took office in March, and declared a national bank holiday to prevent more failures. After a pointed debate, in June Roosevelt signed the Glass-Steagall Act.
The F.D.I.C. definitely prevented panics. From its creation until America’s entry into World War II, banks failed at a rate of close to 50 per year, not bad considering the economic depression in most of that period. And most of the banks that failed were small.
By the postwar period, deposit insurance seemed to have been created for an era that no longer existed. Bankers schooled in the 1930s tended toward prudence, and the industry was risk averse. The failure rate was exceptionally low. That all changed in the 1970s and ’80s. A combination of financial deregulation, revived animal spirits on Wall Street, and rising inflation led to financial instability and swings in interest rates. Voilà — bank failures returned.
In recent days, many have been reminded of 2008 and ’09 (165 banks failed in those two years alone). But for the most part, that crisis was not the result of depositors pulling funds. Bear Stearns, Lehman and others failed or sought bailouts because overnight funding from professional investors disappeared. It dried up for two good reasons: Banks like Lehman had too much leverage, and they were overexposed to a very weak and widely held asset, mortgage securities.
That was not the case with S.V.B.
This panic was a classic bank run, and it bears an echo to a different historical episode. In the 1980s, lenders known as savings and loans had invested their funds in long-term mortgages paying a fixed rate of interest. When the Federal Reserve, under pressure of rising inflation, began to jack up rates, S.&L.s had to pay higher rates to attract deposits.
The mismatch between the cost of their money and the (lower) rate that their mortgages earned sank the industry. Many switched to riskier assets to juice their returns, but as these investments soured, their problems worsened. Roughly a third, or about 1,000, S.&L.s failed. The F.D.I.C. was not (luckily for it) involved, because the S.&L.s were covered by a separate federal insurer. This agency, known as F.S.L.I.C., became insolvent, and the subsequent bailout was estimated to have cost taxpayers more than $100 billion.
Silicon Valley Bank’s failure looks a bit like an S.&L. crisis in miniature. Like its 1980s counterparts, S.V.B. grew extremely rapidly, had many assets parked in fixed, long-term bonds, and was done in when inflation caused the Fed to raise interest rates, raising the cost of keeping deposits.
Like the S.&L.s, Silicon Valley Bank was heavily concentrated. It catered to start-ups for whom an S.V.B. account was a matter of status. One tech savant who had recently changed jobs (aren’t they always switching jobs?) told me that in his experience, roughly two thirds of start-ups banked with S.V.B. (the bank claimed that nearly half the country’s venture capital-backed technology and life science companies were customers).
These crises provoked a widening of the federal safety net. Until the 1970s, the F.D.I.C. limit on deposit coverage increased only slowly. But in 1980, as banks came under pressure from soaring inflation, Congress raised the cap to $100,000, over the objections of the F.D.I.C. itself. In the 2008 crisis, the limit was raised to $250,000. And after the failure of IndyMac in 2008, the F.D.I.C., when possible, quietly protected uninsured depositors.
In the rescue of S.V.B. on Friday and of Signature Bank in New York two days later, the F.D.I.C. overtly ignored the cap and rescued all depositors, irrespective of size. This is a breathtaking leap.
Rescued seven-figure depositors were primarily venture companies steeped in the ideology of investing. The first plank of capitalism is that it entails risk. You cannot sensibly invest without assessing the chance for loss. If venture firms relied on groupthink rather than financial due diligence, that was their doing. In the case of Signature, which was exposed to the crypto industry, the rescue probably bailed out gamblers on speculative assets.
Federal officials have seized on a technicality to claim that it is not a bailout: Any required rescue payments will come from a special assessment on (private) banks, not the public. Prudent banks, which hedged their exposure to interest rates and suffered a competitive cost for doing so, will be hit with the added expense. Most likely, banks will pass along the rescue costs in the form of higher fees to consumers.
Strictly speaking, President Biden’s assurance that taxpayers are not on the line was accurate. However, in the sense that banking customers are a pretty big group, the “public” will be affected.
Moreover, the hazardous effect on behavior will be the same.
The regulators clearly failed to monitor S.V.B.’s unhealthy mismatch of assets and liabilities. Their job will be more difficult in the future, as risk taking on deposits has effectively become socialized. What if a bank opts to attract more funds by raising its interest rate on deposits? Can the regulators permit it? Wait a second, this is what all banks do.
Once you take risk out of a part of a bank’s operations, it is hard to let market principles govern the rest. We should expect, at a minimum, tougher standards on bank capital (as now exists at the biggest banks), more regulation and higher costs. As this newspaper’s DealBook newsletter has predicted, more loans will move away from F.D.I.C.-member institutions to so-called shadow banks such as hedge funds, outside the purview of regulators.
In past bank failures, uninsured depositors did not lose all — 10 to 15 percent was typical. And in this episode, there wasn’t any systemically bad asset à la mortgages in 2008. Given that the risk was contained, and that the Federal Reserve provides liquidity to banks facing runs (and provided emergency liquidity this week), allowing uninsured depositors of banks that fail to suffer a haircut might have been healthier for the system in the long run.
And the bailout does nothing to address the condition that fostered financial instability: inflation. It may even exacerbate it. This is not what Henry Steagall had in mind.
Roger Lowenstein is a financial journalist and the author of “Buffett” and, most recently, “Ways and Means:Lincoln and His Cabinet and the Financing of the Civil War.”
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TikTok’s chief executive, Shou Zi Chew, in the ByteDance offices in Singapore. The White House is hardening its stance toward the Chinese-owned video app.Credit...Ore Huiying for The New York Times
U.S. Pushes for TikTok Sale to Resolve National Security Concerns
The demand hardens the White House’s stance toward the popular video app, which is owned by the Chinese internet company ByteDance.
By David McCabe and Cecilia Kang
March 15, 2023
WASHINGTON — The Biden administration wants TikTok’s Chinese ownership to sell the app or face a possible ban, TikTok said on Wednesday, as the White House hardens its stance toward resolving national security concerns about the popular video service.
The new demand to sell the app was delivered to TikTok in recent weeks, two people with knowledge of the matter said. TikTok is owned by the Chinese internet company ByteDance.
The move is a significant shift in the Biden administration’s position toward TikTok, which has been under scrutiny over fears that Beijing could request Americans’ data from the app. The White House had been trying to negotiate an agreement with TikTok that would apply new safeguards to its data and eliminate a need for ByteDance to sell its shares in the app.
But the demand for a sale — coupled with the White House’s support for legislation that would allow it to ban TikTok in the United States — hardens the administration’s approach. It harks back to the position of former President Donald J. Trump, who threatened to ban TikTok unless it was sold to an American company.
TikTok said it was weighing its options and was disappointed by the decision. The company said its security proposal, which involves storing Americans’ data in the United States, offered the best protection for users.
“If protecting national security is the objective, divestment doesn’t solve the problem: A change in ownership would not impose any new restrictions on data flows or access,” Maureen Shanahan, a spokeswoman for TikTok, said in a statement.
TikTok’s chief executive, Shou Zi Chew, is scheduled to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee next week. He is expected to face questions about the app’s ties to China, as well as concerns that it delivers harmful content to young people.
A White House spokeswoman declined to comment, as did a spokeswoman for the Treasury Department, which has led the negotiations with TikTok. The Justice Department also declined to comment. The demand for a sale was reported earlier by The Wall Street Journal.
TikTok, with 100 million U.S. users, is at the center of a battle between the Biden administration and the Chinese government over tech and economic leadership, as well as national security. President Biden has waged a broad campaign against China with enormous funding programs to increase domestic production of semiconductors, electric vehicles and lithium batteries. The administration has also banned Chinese telecommunications equipment and restricted U.S. exports of chip-manufacturing equipment to China.
The fight over TikTok began in 2020 when Mr. Trump said he would ban the app unless ByteDance sold its stake to an American company, a move recommended by a group of federal agencies known as the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or CFIUS.
The Trump administration eventually appeared to reach a deal for ByteDance to sell part of TikTok to Oracle, the U.S. cloud computing company, and Walmart. But the potential transaction never came to fruition.
CFIUS staff and TikTok continued to negotiate a deal that would allow the app to operate in America. TikTok submitted a major draft of an agreement — which TikTok has called Project Texas — in August. Under the proposal, the company said it would store data belonging to U.S. users on server computers run by Oracle inside the United States.
TikTok officials have not heard back from CFIUS officials since they submitted their proposal, the company said.
In that vacuum, concerns about the app have intensified. States, schools and Congress have enacted bans on TikTok. Last year, a company investigation found that Chinese-based employees of ByteDance had access to the data of U.S. TikTok users, including reporters.
Brendan Carr, a Republican on the Federal Communications Commission, said the administration’s new demand was a “good sign” that the White House was taking a harder line.
“There is bipartisan consensus that we can’t compromise on U.S. national security when it comes to TikTok, and so I hope the CFIUS review now quickly concludes in a manner that safeguards U.S. interests,” Mr. Carr said.
The White House last week backed a bipartisan Senate bill that would give it more power to deal with TikTok, including by banning the app. If it passed, the legislation would give the administration more leverage in its negotiations with the app and potentially allow it to force a sale.
Any effort to ban the app or force its sale could face a legal challenge. Federal courts ultimately ruled against Mr. Trump’s attempt to block the app from appearing in Apple’s and Google’s app stores. And the American Civil Liberties Union recently condemned legislation to ban the app, saying it raises concerns under the First Amendment.
David McCabe covers tech policy. He joined The Times from Axios in 2019.
Cecilia Kang covers technology and regulation and joined The Times in 2015. She is a co-author, along with Sheera Frenkel of The Times, of “An Ugly Truth: Inside Facebook's Battle for Domination.” @ceciliakang
Tammy Cunningham with her son, Calum. She gave birth while hospitalized with severe Covid-19.Credit...Kaiti Sullivan for The New York Times
Covid Worsened a Health Crisis Among Pregnant Women
In 2021, deaths of pregnant women soared by 40 percent in the United States, according to new government figures. Here’s how one family coped after the virus threatened a pregnant mother.
By Roni Caryn Rabin
March 16, 2023
KOKOMO, Ind. — Tammy Cunningham doesn’t remember the birth of her son. She was not quite seven months pregnant when she became acutely ill with Covid-19 in May 2021. By the time she was taken by helicopter to an Indianapolis hospital, she was coughing and gasping for breath.
The baby was not due for another 11 weeks, but Ms. Cunningham’s lungs were failing. The medical team, worried that neither she nor the fetus would survive so long as she was pregnant, asked her fiancé to authorize an emergency C-section.
“I asked, ‘Are they both going to make it?’” recalled Matt Cunningham. “And they said they couldn’t answer that.”
New government data suggest that scenes like this played out with shocking frequency in 2021, the second year of the pandemic.
The National Center for Health Statistics reported on Thursday that 1,205 pregnant women died in 2021, representing a 40 percent increase in maternal deaths compared with 2020, when there were 861 deaths, and a 60 percent increase compared with 2019, when there were 754.
The count includes deaths of women who were pregnant or had been pregnant within the last 42 days, from any cause related to or aggravated by the pregnancy. A separate report by the Government Accountability Office has cited Covid as a contributing factor in at least 400 maternal deaths in 2021, accounting for much of the increase.
Even before the pandemic, the United States had the highest maternal mortality rate of any industrialized nation. The coronavirus worsened an already dire situation, pushing the rate to 32.9 per 100,000 births in 2021 from 20.1 per 100,000 live births in 2019.
The racial disparities have been particularly acute. The maternal mortality rate among Black women rose to 69.9 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2021, 2.6 times the rate among white women. From 2020 to 2021, mortality rates doubled among Native American and Alaska Native women who were pregnant or had given birth within the previous year, according to a study published on Thursday in Obstetrics & Gynecology.
The deaths tell only part of the story. For each woman who died of a pregnancy-related complication, there were many others, like Ms. Cunningham, who experienced the kind of severe illness that leads to premature birth and can compromise the long-term health of both mother and child. Lost wages, medical bills and psychological trauma add to the strain.
Pregnancy leaves women uniquely vulnerable to infectious diseases like Covid. The heart, lungs and kidneys are all working harder during pregnancy. The immune system, while not exactly depressed, is retuned to accommodate the fetus.
Abdominal pressure reduces excess lung capacity. Blood clots more easily, a tendency amplified by Covid, raising the risk of dangerous blockages. The infection also appears to damage the placenta, which delivers oxygen and nutrients to the fetus, and may increase the risk of a dangerous complication of pregnancy called pre-eclampsia.
Pregnant women with Covid face a sevenfold risk of dying compared with uninfected pregnant women, according to one large meta-analysis tracking unvaccinated people. The infection also makes it more likely that a woman will give birth prematurely and that the baby will require neonatal intensive care.
Fortunately, the current Omicron variant appears to be less virulent than the Delta variant, which surfaced in the summer of 2021, and more people have acquired immunity to the coronavirus by now. Preliminary figures suggest maternal deaths dropped to roughly prepandemic levels in 2022.
But pregnancy continues to be a factor that makes even young women uniquely vulnerable to severe illness. Ms. Cunningham, now 39, who was slightly overweight when she became pregnant, had just been diagnosed with gestational diabetes when she got sick.
“It’s something I talk to all my patients about,” said Dr. Torri Metz, a maternal fetal medicine specialist at the University of Utah. “If they have some of these underlying medical conditions and they’re pregnant, both of which are high-risk categories, they have to be especially careful about putting themselves at risk of exposure to any kind of respiratory virus, because we know that pregnant people get sicker from those viruses.”
In the summer of 2021, scientists were somewhat unsure of the safety of mRNA vaccines during pregnancy; pregnant women had been excluded from the clinical trials, as they often are. It was not until August 2021 that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention came out with unambiguous guidance supporting vaccination for pregnant women.
Most of the pregnant women who died of Covid had not been vaccinated. These days, more than 70 percent of pregnant women have gotten Covid vaccines, but only about 20 percent have received the bivalent boosters.
“We know definitively that vaccination prevents severe disease and hospitalization and prevents poor maternal and infant outcomes,” said Dr. Dana Meaney-Delman, chief of the C.D.C.’s infant outcomes monitoring, research and prevention branch. “We have to keep emphasizing that point.”
Ms. Cunningham’s obstetrician had encouraged her to get the shots, but she vacillated. She was “almost there” when she suddenly started having unusually heavy nosebleeds that produced blood clots “the size of golf balls,” she said.
Ms. Cunningham was also feeling short of breath, but she ascribed that to the advancing pregnancy. (Many Covid symptoms can be missed because they resemble those normally occurring in pregnancy.)
A Covid test came back negative, and Ms. Cunningham was happy to return to her job. She had already lost wages after earlier pandemic furloughs at the auto parts plant where she worked. On May 3, 2021, shortly after clocking in, she turned to a friend at the plant and said, “I can’t breathe.”
By the time she arrived at IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, she was in acute respiratory distress. Doctors diagnosed pneumonia and found patchy shadows in her lungs.
Her oxygen levels continued falling even after she was put on undiluted oxygen, and even after the baby was delivered.
“It was clear her lungs were extremely damaged and unable to work on their own,” said Dr. Omar Rahman, a critical care physician who treated Ms. Cunningham. Already on a ventilator, Ms. Cunningham was connected to a specialized heart-lung bypass machine.
Jennifer McGregor, a friend who visited Ms. Cunningham in the hospital, was shocked at how quickly her condition had deteriorated. “I can’t tell you how many bags were hanging there, and how many tubes were going into her body,” she said.
But over the next 10 days, Ms. Cunningham started to recover. Once she was weaned off the heart-lung machine, she discovered she had missed a major life event while under sedation: She had a son.
He was born 29 weeks and two days into the pregnancy, weighing three pounds.
Premature births declined slightly during the first year of the pandemic. But they rose sharply in 2021, the year of the Delta surge, reaching the highest rate since 2007.
Some 10.5 percent of all births were preterm that year, up from 10.1 percent in 2020, and from 10.2 percent in 2019, the year before the pandemic.
Though the Cunninghams’ baby, Calum, never tested positive for Covid, he was hospitalized in the neonatal intensive care unit at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis. He was on a breathing tube, and occasionally stopped breathing for seconds at a time.
Doctors worried that he was not gaining weight quickly enough — “failure to thrive,” they wrote in his chart. They worried about possible vision and hearing loss.
But after 66 days in the NICU, the Cunninghams were able to take Calum home. They learned how to use his feeding tube by practicing on a mannequin, and they prepared for the worst.
“From everything they told us, he was going to have developmental delays and be really behind,” Mr. Cunningham said.
After her discharge from the hospital, Ms. Cunningham was under strict orders to have a caretaker with her at all times and to rest. She didn’t return to work for seven months, after she finally secured her doctors’ approval.
Ms. Cunningham has three teenage daughters, and Mr. Cunningham has another daughter from a previous relationship. Money was tight. Friends dropped off groceries, and the landlord accepted late payments. But the Cunninghams received no government aid: They were even turned down for food stamps.
“We had never asked for assistance in our lives,” Ms. Cunningham said. “We were workers. We used to work seven days a week, eight-hour days, sometimes 12. But when the whole world shut down in 2020, we used up a lot of our savings, and then I got sick. We never got caught up.”
Though she is back to work at the plant, Ms. Cunningham has lingering symptoms, including migraines and short-term memory problems. She forgets doctor’s appointments and what she went to the store for. Recently she left her card in an A.T.M.
Many patients are so traumatized by their stays in intensive care units that they develop so-called post-intensive care syndrome. Ms. Cunningham has flashbacks and nightmares about being back in the hospital.
“I wake up feeling like I’m being smothered at the hospital, or that they’re killing my whole family,” she said. Recently she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Calum, however, has surprised everyone. Within months of coming home from the hospital, he was reaching developmental milestones on time. He started walking soon after his first birthday, and likes to chime in with “What’s up?” and “Uh-oh!”
He has been back to the hospital for viral infections, but his vocabulary and comprehension are superb, his father said. “If you ask if he wants a bath, he’ll take off all his clothes and meet you at the bath,” he said.
Louann Gross, who owns the day care that Calum attends, said he has a hearty appetite — often asking for “thirds” — and more than keeps up with his peers. She added, “I nicknamed him our ‘Superbaby.’”
Two skeletons that were found last year as part of an archaeological dig in northern England.Credit...West Yorkshire Joint Services
A 1,600-Year-Old Coffin May Shed Light on Roman Britain
A lead-lined coffin that was discovered in northern England could offer clues about the area’s transition from the Roman Empire to its Anglo-Saxon period.
By Jenny Gross
Published March 15, 2023
Updated March 16, 2023
LONDON — British archaeologists have uncovered an ancient coffin in a 1,600-year-old cemetery in northern England, a discovery, they said, that could shed light on the end of Roman Britain and the establishment of Anglo-Saxon kingdoms.
Discovered during an archaeological dig in Leeds, the lead-lined coffin contained the remains of an aristocratic woman who most likely lived in the fourth century.
Archaeologists also found the remains of more than 60 people who lived in the area more than a thousand years ago. Some bodies were buried on their backs with their legs straight out, in accordance with late-Roman customs. Others adhered to the Anglo-Saxon tradition, within which burials often included items such as clothes fasteners and knives.
The archaeological dig was part of a consultation process for a company applying for permission to build on the site. Archaeologists had previously uncovered late-Roman stone buildings and a number of structures in the Anglo-Saxon architectural style in the area.
“Very quickly, we started finding burials,” said David Hunter, the principal archaeologist of the West Yorkshire Archaeology Advisory Service, which works with the West Yorkshire planning authorities. “The potential is there to give us much better information on how this transition from the Roman population to Anglo-Saxon England happened.”
Mr. Hunter said that the presence of both late-Roman and early-Anglo Saxon people on the same burial site was unusual. Whether the use of the graveyard had overlapped between the two eras would determine the significance of the find, he added.
The Roman occupation of Britain, from 43 A.D. to around 410, transformed the culture, as settlers from Europe, the Middle East and Africa arrived. Around the third century, market towns and villages were established, and Roman objects became more common even in poor, rural areas, according to English Heritage, which manages prehistoric sites, medieval castles and Roman forts in England.
After the Romans retreated from Britain, society became much more insular and parochial, Mr. Hunter said. A lot is unknown about the period, including how the area transitioned from being part of the Roman Empire in the early fifth century to part of the English nation in the 10th.
“Different people have different theories as to how this could have happened: It could’ve happened by cooperation, it could’ve happened by aggression,” he said.
These findings may add to knowledge about an era that is largely undocumented, Mr. Hunter said. Radiocarbon dating could help determine exactly when the remains were buried. Chemical tests could reveal the diets and ancestry of the people.
Researchers would also like to understand why there were a number of instances in which two or three people were buried in the same grave, as well as why there were multiple burial styles in the same cemetery.
Mr. Hunter said that the two different burial styles could be for reasons of practicality; Since the area was already recognized as a burial place by Roman Britons, it would have been easier for subsequent groups of people to have used the same site.
While the discovery was made in February 2022, the findings were only announced on Monday, in order to keep the site safe and conduct tests on some of the findings, the Leeds City Council said in a statement. The discovery of a lead-lined coffin is rare, with only a few hundred having been discovered in Britain, said Kylie Buxton, on-site supervisor for the excavations.
The council has not released the exact location of the dig. After the analysis is completed, the lead coffin may be displayed at the Leeds City Museum, in an exhibition on death and burial customs, officials said.
A correction was made on March 16, 2023: An earlier version of this article referred imprecisely to English Heritage. The organization manages prehistoric sites, medieval castles and Roman forts in England, not in the rest of Britain. (Other groups manage such sites in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.)
When we learn of a mistake, we acknowledge it with a correction. If you spot an error, please let us know at email@example.com.Learn more
Jenny Gross is a general assignment reporter. Before joining The Times, she covered British politics for The Wall Street Journal. @jggross
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/03/15/world/europe/uk-roman-burial-leeds.html#:~:text=By Jenny Gross March 15%2C 2023 LONDON —,Roman Britain and the establishment of Anglo-Saxon kingdoms.
Mr. Higashitani, seen on a computer monitor, celebrating after winning his election to a seat in the House of Councillors in July 2022.Credit...Kyodo News, via Getty Images
How to Get Kicked Out of Parliament: Livestream Instead of Legislating
The upper house of Japan’s Parliament almost unanimously voted to expel an eccentric YouTuber who won a seat last year. The reason: He never showed up for work.
By Tiffany May and Hisako Ueno
March 15, 2023
Since he was elected to Japan’s Parliament in July, Yoshikazu Higashitani has spread celebrity gossip on his YouTube channel, explored the sights of Dubai and handed out snacks to children displaced by an earthquake in Turkey.
One thing he has not done is show up for work.
On Wednesday, he was expelled from Japan’s upper house of Parliament, the House of Councillors, making him the first elected lawmaker in the country to be removed from office in more than seven decades.
Before his short-lived career as a lawmaker, Mr. Higashitani, 51, was well-known for his lengthy livestreams during which he dished out salacious celebrity gossip under the alias “GaaSyy.” He ran for Parliament from Dubai, claiming that he could not return to Japan because the police were investigating him for fraud. While in self-imposed exile, he campaigned and promised to expose dozens of celebrity scandals.
To the surprise of many, he won — running as the candidate of the single-issue NHK Party, which is dedicated to making changes to how Japan’s national broadcaster is funded. But he has missed every session in the House of Councillors since then.
In the meantime, he has maintained diverse interests, balancing his lengthy rants about celebrities with breezy posts about touring La Sagrada Familia in Spain and playing water sports in Thailand, using the hashtag “#endlesssummer.” Last week, he said he traveled to Turkey, and in videos posted online was seen distributing snacks to children in areas devastated by a February earthquake, in front of a camera crew.
The founder of the NHK Party, Takashi Tachibana, told reporters in January that the police had asked Mr. Higashitani, a fellow party member, to cooperate with investigations related to accusations of defamatory comments and threats he had made in his videos, and that the YouTuber would return to the country in March. (The police declined to comment.)
In February, the House of Councillors demanded that Mr. Higashitani apologize in an open session, a disciplinary act second only to expulsion. He had agreed to do so, only to backtrack on that decision last week, saying that he did not feel safe enough to return, despite having immunity from arrest as a lawmaker.
Mr. Tachibana said last Wednesday that he would step down as head of the party. “As party leader, I will take responsibility for GaaSyy’s failure to keep his promise that he would come back to the upper house to make an apology,” Mr. Tachibana said at a news conference.
He added that the party would be renamed “Seijika Joshi 48 To,” which translates to Politician Girls 48 Party, and that the actress Ayaka Otsu would replace him. Mr. Tachibana said that the party would broaden its goals and would also recruit only female candidates to run for upcoming local elections.
Koichi Nakano, a professor of comparative politics at Sophia University in Tokyo, said that the party’s rebranding was a response to a movement to increase the number of female candidates in elections.
“NHK Party must have thought that they can poke fun at that in a right-wing, misogynist way, by treating female candidates as if they were teen pop idols like AKB48,” Professor Nakano wrote in an email, referring to a popular female pop group.
He added that Mr. Higashitani’s notoriety and what he characterized as the populist appeal of his party got him elected. “It’s unusual, to a degree, but Japan has had its own share of media-celebrities who are complete amateurs of politics, including comedians, actors and pop singers, though none was as unserious as GaaSyy,” Professor Nakano added.
Jeff Kingston, a professor of Asian studies at Temple University’s Japan campus, wrote in an email: “The NHK party, despite rebranding, has achieved little except to register discontent with the establishment and unhappiness with the mandatory fees every household has to pay, even if they don’t watch NHK.”
Muneo Suzuki, who heads a key disciplinary committee in Parliament, told reporters on Tuesday that Mr. Higashitani had already been given ample time to correct his behavior, but that he had ultimately undermined the electoral process. “GaaSyy doesn’t understand what democracy means in principle,” he said.
Dozens of protesters, mostly members of the Seijika Joshi 48 Party, rallied in front of the legislature before lawmakers cast votes over whether to expel Mr. Higashitani. Among the 236 lawmakers who attended the session, all but one voted in favor of his ouster.
Mr. Higashitani could not be immediately reached for comment, but in a statement read on the House floor by Satoshi Hamada, a fellow lawmaker, Mr. Higashitani said that his removal was unjust.
“There will continue to be people like me running for office. If you do not want the world you have made to be destroyed, please exclude those people from candidacy from the very beginning,” he wrote in the statement. “I wish the same punishment upon lawmakers who leave their seats immediately after propping up their nameplates and ones who are asleep and don’t show up like myself.”
Tiffany May covers news from Asia. She joined The Times in 2017. @nytmay
Hisako Ueno has been reporting on Japanese politics, business, gender, labor and culture for The Times since 2012. She previously worked for the Tokyo bureau of The Los Angeles Times from 1999 to 2009. @hudidi1
rest in peace
if you want to make donations to his memory
MOMCares or https://www.momcares.org/
The question is, if in the year 2023 various people, multiphenotypical, are calling for an end to slavery in prisons then when Black people like me said slavery wasn't over, and other black people said we were incorrect... who was wrong?
And moreover, what does it mean for the over one hundred and fifty years of black people in the usa, post war between the states, most of whom are the most financially affluent in the black community in the usa, who kept calling and still call other black people lazy when the black community has been herded by white governments into slavery post the thirteenth amendment?
For most people the issue is ending the allowance of slavery in the usa, and I comprehend the importance, but I think the black community in the usa has a bigger issue. That being the role of the black one percent, the black employed. It is clear that the black communities employed class, in majority not all, are complicit in the crime of aiding or abetting the falsehood that slavery ended? The falsehood that the black community in the usa was not oppressed by the white community in the usa? Every single state in the union that had a black populace, southern or northern, is led by a white community that herded the local black community into prisons for over one hundred and fifty years. But alongside the fifty white communities actions was an ever growing black financial elite who blamed the black majority for being herded into slavery post the thirteenth amendment... isn't that a crime?
How do black people incarcerate black people for their crimes against the black community when the white legal system doesn't have an allowance for it?
for the complete episode
age of easy money
Age Of Easy Money - Culture, Race & Economy - African American Literature Book Club (aalbc.com)
IT's funny, Listening to the people in this video explains the conjunction of nonviolence and immigration.
In most of human history when a person lived under any government, if they wanted to make their life better, by whatever standards they had to make it better under the government they lived in cause nearly all governments had a negative policy to those who live under a foreign government. But the USA came about and unlike any other government in human history said, the world's poor can come in. Not truthfully, there was and is restrictions but not enough to truly ban any group anywhere in humanity. And the global poor had an epiphany.
all of a sudden, the global poor had this government called the usa they can run to. Whether non violent means are exhausted or not, and definitely if non violent means are exhausted, running to the usa is the answer. This explains why so many in modern humanity hated donald trump. if the usa wasn't to be the haven, then no government would and all the poor in humanity will have to make their lives better where they are... by any means necessary.
How does a bank collapse in 48 hours? A timeline of the SVB fall
By Ramishah Maruf and Allison Morrow, CNN
This week, the go-to bank for US tech startups came rapidly unglued, leaving its high-powered customers and investors in limbo.
Silicon Valley Bank, facing a sudden bank run and capital crisis, collapsed Friday morning and was taken over by federal regulators.
It was the largest failure of a US bank since Washington Mutual in 2008.
Here’s what we know about the bank’s downfall, and what might come next.
What is SVB?
Founded in 1983, SVB specialized in banking for tech startups. It provided financing for almost half of US venture-backed technology and health care companies.
While relatively unknown outside of Silicon Valley, SVB was among the top 20 American commercial banks, with $209 billion in total assets at the end of last year, according to the FDIC.
Why did it fail?
In short, SVB encountered a classic run on the bank.
The longer version is a bit more complicated.
Several forces collided to take down the banker.
First, there was the Federal Reserve, which began raising interest rates a year ago to tame inflation. The Fed moved aggressively, and higher borrowing costs sapped the momentum of tech stocks that had benefited SVB.
Higher interest rates also eroded the value of long-term bonds that SVB and other banks gobbled up during the era of ultra-low, near-zero interest rates. SVB’s $21 billion bond portfolio was yielding an average of 1.79% — the current 10-year Treasury yield is about 3.9%.
At the same time, venture capital began drying up, forcing startups to draw down funds held by SVB. So the bank was sitting on a mountain of unrealized losses in bonds just as the pace of customer withdrawals was escalating.
The panic takes root…
On Wednesday, SVB announced it had sold a bunch of securities at a loss, and that it would also sell $2.25 billion in new shares to shore up its balance sheet. That triggered a panic among key venture capital firms, who reportedly advised companies to withdraw their money from the bank.
The bank’s stock began plummeting Thursday morning and by the afternoon it was dragging other bank shares down with it as investors began to fear a repeat of the 2007-2008 financial crisis.
By Friday morning, trading in SVB shares was halted and it had abandoned efforts to quickly raise capital or find a buyer. California regulators intervened, shutting the bank down and placing it in receivership under the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
Contagion fears subside
Despite initial panic on Wall Street, analysts said SVB’s collapse is unlikely to set off the kind of domino effect that gripped the banking industry during the financial crisis.
“The system is as well-capitalized and liquid as it has ever been,” Moody’s chief economist Mark Zandi said. “The banks that are now in trouble are much too small to be a meaningful threat to the broader system.”
No later than Monday morning, all insured depositors will have full access to their insured deposits, according to the FDIC. It will pay uninsured depositors an “advance dividend within the next week.”
So, while a broader contagion is unlikely, smaller banks that are disproportionately tied to cash-strapped industries like tech and crypto may be in for a rough ride, according to Ed Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda.
“Everyone on Wall Street knew that the Fed’s rate-hiking campaign would eventually break something, and right now that is taking down small banks,” Moya said on Friday.
The FDIC typically sells a failed bank’s assets to other banks, using the proceeds to repay depositors whose funds weren’t insured.
A buyer could still emerge for SVB, though it’s far from guaranteed.
U.S. regulators try to reduce bank-run risk, discuss fund to backstop deposits if more banks fail in wake of SVB collapse
BYTONY CZUCZKA, VICTORIA CAVALIERE AND BLOOMBERG
US regulators are racing against the clock to find solutions for failed Silicon Valley Bank while Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said officials are focusing on protecting depositors, as officials seek to avoid a wider bank run.
After SVB collapsed into receivership on Friday in the biggest bank failure in over a decade, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. kicked off an auction process for its assets late Saturday, as it aims to make a portion of clients’ uninsured deposits available as soon as Monday, according to people with knowledge of the situation. The agency and the Federal Reserve have also discussed a fund to backstop deposits if more banks fail as part of wider contingency planning, people said.
Those efforts are aimed at protecting depositors, rather than bailing out investors, Yellen said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday.
“During the financial crisis there were investors and owners of systemic large banks that were bailed out,” the Treasury Secretary said. “And we’re certainly not looking — and the reforms that have been put in place means that we’re not going to do that again. But we are concerned about depositors and we’re focused on trying to meet their needs.”
Democratic Representative Ro Khanna, whose California district is home to SVB, said the FDIC is working to find a buyer and urged the US government to guarantee all of the bank’s deposits. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, told Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures” he’s “hopeful that something can be announced today to move forward.”
Concern about the health of other smaller banks focused on the venture capital and startup communities is prompting regulators to consider extraordinary measures. Officials have discussed the new fund to backstop deposits in conversations with banking executives, in the hope that setting up such a vehicle would reassure depositors and help contain any panic, said the people. They asked not to be identified because the talks weren’t public.
Final bids for SVB’s assets are due Sunday afternoon but a winner may not be known until late in the day, other people with knowledge said.
In her CBS interview, Yellen renewed assurances that the US banking system is safe, well-capitalized and resilient.
“I simply want to say that we’re very aware of the problems that depositors will have,” she said. “Many of them are small businesses that employ people across the country and of course this is a significant concern and working with regulators to try to address these concerns.”
US regulators are under time pressure to sell assets of SVB Financial Group, the bank’s parent, prompting offers by some investment firms to provide financing to companies with cash trapped at Silicon Valley Bank.
Asked whether the FDIC might be open to a “foreign bank” coming in as a buyer, Yellen said, “I’m sure they’re considering a wide range of available options that include acquisitions.”
While the FDIC insures deposits of up to $250,000, the vast majority of funds held in at SVB far exceeded that. The agency has said it will make 100% of protected deposits available on Monday.
Asked on “Face the Nation” about the option of a private-sector bank buying SVB’s assets, Khanna said: “That would be the ideal situation and our delegation that talked to the FDIC last night made that clear. That’s what we urged them to work on, they said they’re working on it.”
Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley said Saturday that US taxpayers shouldn’t bail out Silicon Valley Bank. “Private investors can purchase the bank and its assets,” Haley, a former South Carolina governor and US ambassador to the United Nations, said in a statement.
The White House repeated its assurances on the US banking system, with Office of Management and Budget Shalanda Young citing regulatory changes put in place after the financial crisis more than a decade ago.
“What I’ll say about the banking system overall is it’s more resilient, and has a better foundation than before the financial crisis,” Young said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“Americans can have confidence in the safety and soundness of our banking system” and the US economy is “extremely strong,” Yellen said on CBS.
List of bank failures in the usa
Wiki of collapse of silicon valley bank
A Long-Lost Manuscript Contains a Searing Eyewitness Account of the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921
An Oklahoma lawyer details the attack by hundreds of whites on the thriving black neighborhood where hundreds died 95 years ago
May 27, 2016
This first-person account by B.C. Franklin is titled "The Tulsa Race Riot and Three of Its Victims." It was recovered from a storage area in 2015 and donated to the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture. NMAAHC, Gift from Tulsa Friends and John W. and Karen R. Franklin
The ten-page manuscript is typewritten, on yellowed legal paper, and folded in thirds. But the words, an eyewitness account of the May 31, 1921, racial massacre that destroyed what was known as Tulsa, Oklahoma’s “Black Wall Street,” are searing.
“I could see planes circling in mid-air. They grew in number and hummed, darted and dipped low. I could hear something like hail falling upon the top of my office building. Down East Archer, I saw the old Mid-Way hotel on fire, burning from its top, and then another and another and another building began to burn from their top,” wrote Buck Colbert Franklin (1879-1960).
The Oklahoma lawyer, father of famed African-American historian John Hope Franklin (1915-2009), was describing the attack by hundreds of whites on the thriving black neighborhood known as Greenwood in the booming oil town. “Lurid flames roared and belched and licked their forked tongues into the air. Smoke ascended the sky in thick, black volumes and amid it all, the planes—now a dozen or more in number—still hummed and darted here and there with the agility of natural birds of the air.”
Franklin writes that he left his law office, locked the door, and descended to the foot of the steps.
“The side-walks were literally covered with burning turpentine balls. I knew all too well where they came from, and I knew all too well why every burning building first caught from the top,” he continues. “I paused and waited for an opportune time to escape. ‘Where oh where is our splendid fire department with its half dozen stations?’ I asked myself. ‘Is the city in conspiracy with the mob?’”
Franklin’s harrowing manuscript now resides among the collections of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. The previously unknown document was found last year, purchased from a private seller by a group of Tulsans and donated to the museum with the support of the Franklin family.
In the manuscript, Franklin tells of his encounters with an African-American veteran, named Mr. Ross. It begins in 1917, when Franklin meets Ross while recruiting young black men to fight in World War I. It picks up in 1921 with his own eyewitness account of the Tulsa race riots, and ends ten years later with the story of how Mr. Ross’s life has been destroyed by the riots. Two original photographs of Franklin were part of the donation. One depicts him operating with his associates out of a Red Cross tent five days after the riots.
John W. Franklin, a senior program manager with the museum, is the grandson of manuscript’s author and remembers the first time he read the found document.
“I wept. I just wept. It’s so beautifully written and so powerful, and he just takes you there,” Franklin marvels. “You wonder what happened to the other people. What was the emotional impact of having your community destroyed and having to flee for your lives?”
B.C. Franklin and his associates pose before his law offices in Ardmore, Oklahoma, 1910 NMAAHC, Gift from Tulsa Friends and John W. and Karen R. Franklin
The younger Franklin says Tulsa has been in denial over the fact that people were cruel enough to bomb the black community from the air, in private planes, and that black people were machine-gunned down in the streets. The issue was economics. Franklin explains that Native Americans and African-Americans became wealthy thanks to the discovery of oil in the early 1900s on what had previously been seen as worthless land.
“That’s what leads to Greenwood being called the Black Wall Street. It had restaurants and furriers and jewelry stores and hotels,” John W. Franklin explains, “and the white mobs looted the homes and businesses before they set fire to the community. For years black women would see white women walking down the street in their jewelry and snatch it off.”
Museum curator Paul Gardullo, who has spent five years along with Franklin collecting artifacts from the riot and the aftermath, says: “It was the frustration of poor whites not knowing what to do with a successful black community, and in coalition with the city government were given permission to do what they did.”
“It’s a scenario that you see happen from place to place around our country . . . from Wilmington, Delaware, to Washington, D.C., to Chicago, and these are in some ways mass lynchings,” he says
As in other places, the Tulsa race riot started with newspaper reports that a black man had assaulted a white elevator operator. He was arrested, and Franklin says black World War I vets rushed to the courthouse to prevent a lynching.
“Then whites were deputized and handed weapons, the shooting starts and then it gets out of hand,” Franklin says. “It went on for two days until the entire black community is burned down.”
More than 35 blocks were destroyed, along with more than 1,200 homes, and some 300 people died, mostly blacks. The National Guard was called out after the governor declared martial law, and imprisoned all blacks that were not already in jail. More than 6,000 people were held, according to the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum, some for as long as eight days.
Practicing law in a Red Cross tent are B.C. Franklin (right) and his partner I.H. Spears with their secretary Effie Thompson on June 6, 1921, five days after the massacre. NMAAHC, Gift from Tulsa Friends and John W. and Karen R. Franklin
“(Survivors) talk about how the city was shut down in the riot,” Gardullo says. “They shut down the phone systems, the railway. . . . They wouldn’t let the Red Cross in. There was complicity between the city government and the mob. It was mob rule for two days, and the result was the complete devastation of the community.”
Gardullo adds that the formulaic stereotype about young black men raping young white women was used with great success from the end of slavery forward to the middle of the 20th century.
“It was a formula that resulted in untold numbers of lynchings across the nation,” Gardullo says. “The truth of the matter has to do with the threat that black power, black economic power, black cultural power, black success, posed to individuals and . . . the whole system of white supremacy. That’s embedded within our nation’s history.”
Franklin says he has issues with the words often used to describe the attack that decimated the black community.
“The term riot is contentious, because it assumes that black people started the violence, as they were accused of doing by whites,” Franklin says. “We increasingly use the term massacre, or I use the European term, pogrom.”
June 1, 1921, Tulsa, Oklahoma NMAAHC
Among the artifacts Gardullo and John W. Franklin have obtained, are a handful of pennies collected off the ground from a young boy’s home burned to the ground during the riot, items with labels saying this was looted from a black church during the riot, and postcards with photos from the race riots, some showing burning corpses.
“Riot postcards were often distributed . . . crassly and cruelly . . . as a way to sell white supremacy,” Gardullo says. “At the time they were shown as documents that were shared between white community members to demonstrate their power. Later . . . they became part of the body of evidence that was used during the commission for reparation.”
In 2001, the Tulsa Race Riot Commission issued a report detailing the damage from the riots, but legislative and legal attempts to gain reparations for the survivors have failed.
The Tulsa race riots aren’t mentioned in most American history textbooks, and many people don’t know that they happened.
Curator Paul Gardullo says the crucial question is why not?
“Throughout American history there’s been a vast silence about the atrocities that were performed in the service of white history. . . . There are a lot of silences in relation to this story, and a lot of guilt and shame,” Gardullo explains. That’s one reason why the events of May 31 and June 1, 1921, will be featured in an exhibition at the new museum called “The Power of Place.” Gardullo says the title is about more than geography.
“(It’s) the power of certain places, about displacement, movement, about what place means for people,” he says. “This is about emotion and culture and memory. . . . How do you tell a story about destruction? How do you balance the fortitude and resilience of people in response to that devastation? How do you fill the silences? How do you address the silences about a story that this community has held in silence for so long and in denial for so long?”
Despite the devastation, the black community in Tulsa was able to rebuild on the ashes of its neighborhood, partly because Buck Colbert Franklin battled all the way to the Oklahoma Supreme Court to defeat a law that would have effectively prevented African-Americans from doing so. By 1925, there was again a thriving black business district. John W. Franklin says his grandfather’s manuscript is important for people to see because it deals with “suppressed history.”
“This is an eyewitness account from a reputable source about what he saw happen,” he grandson John W. Franklin says. “It is definitely relevant to today, because I think our notions of justice are based partially on our own history and our knowledge of history. But we are an a-historical society, in that we don’t know our past.”
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture opens on September 24 of this year on the National Mall.
Allison Keyes https://twitter.com/allisonradio
Allison Keyes is an award-winning correspondent, host and author. She can currently be heard on CBS Radio News, among other outlets. Keyes, a former national desk reporter for NPR, has written extensively on race, culture, politics and the arts.
My error is in being too busy to share everything before I communicate on topics, but I just can't always. I need sleep:)
I love the audio. a black person admitted she was idealistic. She admitted SHE WAS IDEALISTIC. Black people in Tulsa Oklahoma didn't defend themselves, they were IDEALISTIC. WHich is another word for dishonest.
They didn't defend themselves, they didn't use violence. Building a wall is violence. Having sentries is violence. HAving a trench is violence. HAving spies is violence. HAving lookouts is violence. Having counter measures is violence. The prey isn't violent. The lamb isn't violent. The wolf is violent. The lamb defending itself is violent, but not before. The people of Tulsa were nonviolent and any black person who utters they were violent in any way is a liar.
This article culminates the grand difference between Black people in Haiti for a time, or in the viceroyalty of florida for a time, or the black people that fought against the creation of the usa for a time, aside Black people everywhere else in the American continent, canada to argentina, at any time.
Somehow, Black people who knew and know whites are their enemy didn't and don't think to actually defend themselves against whites. Black people talk about nonviolence today, but that nonviolent call has shown itself to be not only at the cost of black people's lives, but black people's fault. Ideals and laws and nonviolence never protected anyone. if someone says they hate you and you think you can defend against their hate by acting like it doesn't exist,acting like the law has value, acting like you can pick and choose when to protect yourself in a way, I quote the word used by the elder black in the audio, IDEALISTIC, you are an asshole, you are an idiot, you are a liar to yourself or the community you live in, you are a fool. And sadly, in Tulsa's case, the people of Tulsa sealed their own doom.
Why didn't Blacks talk about it! why? Is that nonviolence ? Is that having an opinion? A Black person's opinion is to not be honest and have their viewpoint on a clear act of war which wasn't new wasn't unknown, wasn't unheard of but Black people like the Tulsa folk before their inevitable burning, were of the opinion it is best not to say anything. Not to be violent and walk around with guns and live behind walls and protect your resources. No, it is best to be nonviolent and quite.
Review: Chris Rock’s ‘Selective Outrage’ Strikes Back
A year after Will Smith slapped him at the Oscars, Rock responded fiercely in a new stand-up special, Netflix’s first experiment in live entertainment.
By Jason Zinoman
March 5, 2023
One year later, Chris Rock slapped back. Hard.
It was certainly not as startling as Will Smith hitting him at the Oscars, but his long-awaited response, in his new Netflix stand-up special “Selective Outrage” on Saturday night, had moments that felt as emotional, messy and fierce. It was the least rehearsed, most riveting material in an uneven hour.
Near the end, Rock even botched a key part of one joke, getting a title of a movie wrong. Normally, such an error would have been edited out, but since this was the first live global event in the history of Netflix, Rock could only stop, call attention to it and tell the joke again. It messed up his momentum, but the trade-off might have been worth it, since the flub added an electric spontaneity and unpredictability that was a drawing card.
At 58, Rock is one of one of our greatest stand-ups, a perfectionist whose material, once it appeared in a special, always displayed a meticulous sense of control. He lost it here, purposely, flashing anger as he insulted Smith, offering a theory of the case of what really happened at the Academy Awards after he made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair, and in what will be the most controversial part of the set, laid much of the blame on her. This felt like comedy as revenge. Rock said he long loved Will Smith. “And now,” he added, pausing before referencing the new movie in which Smith plays an enslaved man, “I watch ‘Emancipation’ just to see him get whooped.”
One of the reasons Netflix remains the leading stand-up platform has been its ability to create attention-getting events. No other streamer comes close. Through a combination of razzle dazzle and Rolodex spinning, the streaming service packaged this special more like a major sporting event than a special, a star-studded warm-up act to the Oscars next week.
It began with an awkward preshow hosted by Ronny Chieng, who soldiered through by poking fun at the marketing around him. “We’re doing a comedy show on Saturday night — live,” he said, before sarcastically marveling at this “revolutionary” innovation. An all-star team of comics (Ali Wong, Leslie Jones, Jerry Seinfeld), actors (Matthew McConaughey) and music stars (Paul McCartney, Ice-T) hyped up the proceedings, featuring enough earnest tributes for a lifetime achievement award. As if this weren’t enough puffery, Netflix had the comedians Dana Carvey and David Spade host a panel of more celebrations posing as post-show analysis.
This was unnecessary, since Netflix already had our attention by having Rock signed to do a special right after he was on the receiving end of one of the most notorious bad reviews of a joke in the history of television. Countless people weighed in on the slap, most recently the actor and comic Marlon Wayans, whose surprisingly empathetic new special, “God Loves Me,” is an entire hour about the incident from someone who knows all the participants. HBO Max releasing that in the last week was its own counterprogramming.
Until now, Rock has said relatively little about the Oscars, telling a few jokes on tour, which invariably got reported in the press. I’m guessing part of the reason he wanted this special to air live was to hold onto an element of surprise. Rock famously said that he always believed a special should be special. And he has done so in previous shows by moving his comedy in a more personal direction. “Tamborine,” an artful, intimate production shot at the BAM Harvey theater, focused on his divorce. This one, shot in Baltimore, had a grander, more old-fashioned vibe, with reaction shots alternating with him pacing the stage in his signature commanding cadence.
Dressed all in white, his T-shirt and jeans hanging loosely off a lanky frame, and wearing a shiny bracelet and necklace with the Prince symbol, Rock started slowly with familiar bits about easily bruised modern sensibilities, the hollowness of social media and woke signaling. He skewered the preening of companies like Lululemon that market their lack of racism while charging $100 for yoga pants. Most people, he says, would “prefer $20 racist yoga pants.”
If there’s one consistent thread through Rock’s entire career, it’s following the money, how economics motivates even love and social issues. On abortion, he finds his way to the financial angle, advising women: “If you have to pay for your own abortion, you should have an abortion.”
A commanding theater performer who sets up bits as well as anyone, Rock picked up momentum midway through, while always hinting at the Smith material to come, with a reoccurring refrain of poking fun at Snoop Dogg and Jay-Z before making clear it’s just for fun: “Last thing I need is another mad rapper.” Another running theme is his contempt for victimhood. His jokes about Meghan Markle are very funny, mocking her surprise that the royal family is racist, terming them its originators, the “Sugarhill Gang of racism.”
On tour, his few jokes about Smith were once tied to his points about victimhood. But here, he follows one of his most polished and funny jokes, comparing the dating prospects of Jay-Z and Beyoncé if they weren’t stars but worked at Burger King, with a long, sustained section on the Oscars that closes the show. Here, he offers his theory on Will Smith, which is essentially that the slap was an act of displacement, shifting his anger from his wife cheating on him and broadcasting it onto Rock. The comic says his joke was never really the issue. “She hurt him way more than he hurt me,” Rock said, using his considerable powers of description to describe the humiliation of Smith in a manner that seemed designed to do it again.
There’s a comic nastiness to Rock’s insults, some of which is studied, but other times appeared to be the product of his own bottled-up anger. In this special, Rock seemed more raw than usual, sloppier, cursing more often and less precisely. This was a side of him you hadn’t seen before. The way his fury became directed at Pinkett Smith makes you wonder if this was also a kind of displacement. Going back into the weeds of Oscar history, Rock traced his conflict with her and Smith to when he said she wanted Rock to quit as Oscar host in 2016 because Smith was not nominated for the movie “Concussion” (the title that he mangled).
That her boycotting that year’s Oscars was part of a larger protest against the Academy for not nominating Black artists went unsaid, implying it was merely a pretext. Rock often establishes his arguments with the deftness and nuance of a skilled trial lawyer, but he’s not trying to give a fair, fleshed out version of events. He’s out for blood. There’s a coldness here that is bracing. Describing his jokes about Smith’s wife at the ceremony in 2016, he put it bluntly: “She started it. I finished it.” But, of course, as would become obvious years later, he didn’t.
Did he finish it in this special? We’ll see, but I think we’re in for another cycle of discourse as we head into the Academy Awards next week.
At one point, Rock said there are four ways people can get attention in our culture: “Showing your ass,” being infamous, being excellent or playing the victim. It’s a good list, but this special demonstrates a conspicuous omission: Nothing draws a crowd like a fight.
A correction was made on March 6, 2023: An earlier version of this review misquoted part of Rock’s joke about high-priced yoga pants. He said most people would “prefer $20 racist yoga pants,” not $25.
Jason Zinoman is a critic at large for The Times. As the paper’s first comedy critic, he has written the On Comedy column since 2011. @zinoman
A version of this article appears in print on March 6, 2023, Section C, Page 1 of the New York edition with the headline: Rock’s Revenge: Live and Imperfect
Title: Wedding Illustration for Wedding Fantasia < https://www.instagram.com/wedding_fantasia/ >
Artist: El Carna < https://www.instagram.com/elcarnastudios/ >
EL Carna post
Artist: El Carna < https://www.instagram.com/elcarnastudios/ >
EL Carna post
Title: Happy Independence Day Ghana
Artist: El Carna < https://www.instagram.com/elcarnastudios/ >
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Title: Tiber De Grayson
Artist: daniel williams and vince white < http://thepowerverse.com/ >
Title: Samurai shin the animation
Artist: KHermann hermann
Photographer: ronald reed ronwired
Ronald Reed post
Stephanie Mills Interview
your thoughts? I am just simply a stephanie mills fan
jeffrey daniel and the moonwalk
GDBEE COLORING PAGES for Black History Month 2023
High resolution versions , support gdbee and give what you can please
I have some coloring pages as well in my gallery. Here are a few, enjoy as well
@richardmurraytiktok Joys of one North or somewhere preview https://www.kobo.com/us/en/audiobook/joys-of-one-north-or-somewhere #rmaalbc #wabisabi #haiku #audiobook ♬ original sound - richardmurraytiktok
Title: Joys of one North or somewhere
ArtisT: Richard Murray
A set of Haiku's built from the aesthetic of Wabi Sabi from Nippon.
Title: Joys of one North or somewhere
ArtisT: Richard Murray
A set of Haiku's built from the aesthetic of Wabi Sabi from Nippon.
First in the Messages at the end of a rainbow series
Artist: Michele Rosewoman's New Yor-Uba, featuring Oru de Oro
Track: The heart of it (chango)
THE MAGIC OF NEGRO SPIRITUALS
kathleen battle side jessye norman
KWL Live Q&A – Romance Roundtable with B. E. Baker, Elana Johnson, Jean Oram, Jan Moran, & Kellie Coates Gilbert
MY THOUGHTS AS I WATCH
5:54 publishing wide
opportunities expand with going wide.
you get to join with partners, book publishing, better.
you lose personalization on larger platforms
11:12 define sweet romance and what is the difference between women's fiction and sweet romance
women's fiction , a woman enters one way and exists another
the focus is different, women's fiction where point of view are females, while sweet romance is a double
Advertising between women's fiction or sweet romance is not the same.
We do readers a disservice by trying to labelize or niche their stories.
The Notebook is beloved
21:43 marketing reader expectations
Covers are our billboards
most use script because script smbolizes for most romance
big heavy romance readers are more acute and have many categories. if you make a romance that is small town and it is set in nyc, the readers will have a problem.
use subtitles, to specify for readers clarity
mafia romances are usually black red and gold , so an author changed her colors on her book, to handle the common assumptions of certain audiences
explicit titles can be blunt but can make it easy to be remember and focus, and in the blurb give them all the details to what is in it
branding is essential, if you go in a store and every can has no label, how do you know what you are buying.
your audience isn't everyone
as trends change, you can change books, especially if they fit
39:30 marketing strategies and what has worked best for you
one started a reader group, and she did author interviews, she uses newsletters, the she's reading group is better
one said connecting to readers and she has a readers group , and her mailing list
one is her email marketing is her best avenue, stop marketing books, and start marketing experiences, and she is on a place that nobody can change.
one don't limit herself. she is very active in her facebook group. go for vertical sales, where people who like you and they buy your work. horizontal sales is new people. if you are selling at 99 cent and doing a lot of giveaways then you may have a marketing problem. do you need to get an editor. people on a restrictive budget are on kobo plus, not the regular sales.
51:00 audience questions
one said, if you keep writing, this is a backlist. It may not work at the beginning but when you find your audience these books can do better.
one said, you write because you love doing it. and she had a story on the shelf for five years. But, all her books are clean. People think clean means cheesy.
one said, find yourself author friends, you can link. Don't do the journey alone.
one said, what few say when they reach six figures in sales, even they have days when things don't go well, where you will want to quit. you watch the graph go down, and you wonder. Get your tribe:)
husbands don't make great girlfriends:)
one, i write for it is a therapy.
1:06:00 any advice for new authors coming into the industry
one said, if you are starting out, you are going to have to write and write and write.
one said, it is hard to advertise one book.
one said, take a little time every day to go into author groups. consume but don't take everything to gospel
one said, your working with something small at the beginning, every decision can be undone, everything you are making can be unfixed, following advice takes away from writing. Everyone's process is different, and other's may do well, and not your system.
try to have fun being a creator
My thoughts in reply to the source
I don't see a problem at all. But I grew up in a home where my parents worked together to pay bills, to rear me. This concept of the male role or the female role is silly or dysfunctional.
A woman has the right to have a dominant charater type like a man has the same right.
The following image is shared as a photo of proper gender representation
I don't see the problem with either. If Oprah side her partner/husband wants to appear side to side while Rihanna's partner/husband want to be seen with her in the lead and him being led carrying their child what is the problem?
I am a heterosexual man, a rare thing I tout , but I do now cause a dysfunctional mentality exist among many, and I argue most, of my fellow heterosexual men. And that is this idea that the man is lessened, or taken out of masculinity, ala emasculated, when he appears in any role where a woman is in a superior posture.
I do not know Rihanna, but if we actually knew each other, and we became intimate, and she said she wanted to have a child side me, and I said yes, I will not feel lessened or emasculated because we are in a photo shoot like the one above.
I can't even comprehend why I will feel lessened or emasculated. I will not feel embarassed or insulted by Rihanna or the photographer. In the photograph, Rihanna doesn't have a chain around the man's neck. She isn't walking in front disconnected which was a common and still visible married posture in public in Nippon or Japan.
The best question is, if Rihanna was holding the baby and being led by the male, would that then be an image of proper gender roles by those who judge the Rihanna photo above as emasculating to men?
Not for me. If my wife, no too easy, if my girlfriend wants to create a baby side me and I concur, then I have no problem at all with her wanting to have such a photo shoot. Notice I didn't mention money. I wouldn't mind this photoshoot. Now if my girlfriend has Rihanna's money, I daresay this photoshoot is warranted. I don't mind being the father whether my girlfriend is rich or poor if we both agree. But, I am not ashamed to say my girlfriend who has joined me in creating a baby, and another baby:), who is a billionaire warrants the photo. I am not less of a man because a woman is a billionaire and I am looking for work/hustling/struggling through my own road.
I think men who feel emasculated by Rihanna's photo are why so many women who are financially successful don't trust men. Cause many, and i argue most in global humanity, heterosexual men, whether rich or poor, feel/think/believe/know a woman , whether she is financially superior to them or not, needs to act like a housewife.
I recall a scene in Crazy Rich Asians, I never read the book, when a male character fiscally poorer than the female character he is married to couldn't handle their environment or reality in their community.
My fellow Heterosexual Men, calm down:) Your manhood isn't lessened because a woman can make more money than you, can want children without marrying you, can not need to rely on you for what men forced women to rely on men for in the past. Men in the USA...Embrace the opportunity to have only love as what is needed living side women. Don't undermine women as men in most other places in humanity who seem infatuated to a male dominant gender structure in their community.
Calm down and be happy women are free. Wouldn't you want your daughter to be able to be whatever she wants and not feel through peer pressure in her mind or where she lives she has to give a man an unfair or unwarranted or unnecessary role to her, just for his ego side the ego of many , and I argue most, in his gender community.
The emasculation of men continues...you can already tell who the man is in this relationship...that dude about to be a proud mother of 2
This guy has 260K plus followers. We are doomed to more of his fragility and stupidity...pretty much forever
IN AMENDMENT to the referral
I oppose the position of the source but I don't think men who are unafraid of women are near extinction. The reality is, the future will have many men who feel/know/think a woman has a natural subservient place. The good news is that the future will also have at least as equally strong spaces for men who oppose that position.
It isn't doom and gloom. And I comprehend the frustration. I am a heterosexual man. Yeah, lust isn't a sin, it is powerful, necessary, human. And shouldn't be cast aside. Lust all to often plays a huge role in men's, heterosexual men's physical desires for women. The key isn't to delete lust or run away from it or succumb to it, but to embrace love + liking more than lust. For when you love or like a woman, your lust can exist without guiding you to desiring a woman ill.