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Black Woman Researching Racial Bias In Criminal Justice Wins Prestigious ‘Genius Grant’

CHICAGO (AP) — A professor whose research is helping a California police department improve its strained relationship with the black community and a lawyer who advocates for victims of domestic abuse are among the 21 winners of this year’s MacArthur Foundation “genius grants.”
The Chicago-based John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation announced on Wednesday the 2014 recipients, who will each receive $625,000 to spend any way they like.

Black churches are becoming more gay-friendly

For years, there has been an unspoken but deeply prevalent “don’t ask, don’t” tell policy in the black church. But today, Duke University released data that show those days may be coming to an end.
Their research has found:
 “Acceptance of homosexual members in black protestant churches has surged of late. The percentage of churches accepting of gay and lesbian members has risen from 44 percent in 2006 to 62 percent in 2012.

Why More Black Americans Should Run for Elected Office

On Labor Day in Milwaukee, President Barack Obama gave a rousing speech to supporters in which he accused Republicans of playing political games instead of helping American families. When the crowd started to boo, the president leaned on a quip from his 2012 re-election campaign: “Don’t boo. Vote!”
It’s a familiar sentiment, particularly in the black community. From the Reconstruction Era through Jim Crow and into the civil rights movement, voting has been seen as the key to remedying injustice and addressing racial inequality. Today, increased voting is the fallback strategy when the black community searches for a plan to address the latest tragedy. When Trayvon Martin’s killer was acquitted of murder charges, many figures, from the family’s attorney to national political strategists, argued that the most appropriate response was for black Americans to vote. When Ferguson, Mo., focused the nation’s attention on its racial issues, the Rev. Jesse Jackson called on people to use “voting power to elect officials to respond to their real needs.”

One bar of soap at a time – Part 2

Soap has come a long way from its original state. Today it comes in almost every scent imaginable. Kimeli Wade has developed a product that is chemical free with skin soothing properties. This week she continues the story of her journey in Part 2.

Soul Music Retrospective Revisits Memphis Roots of the Rhythm and Blues Sound

Take me to the River
A lot of great soul music came out of Memphis in the Sixties and early Seventies. Stax Records launched the careers of acts like Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes and Booker T. and the MGs while its cross-town rival Hi Records had Al Green, Ann Peebles and O.V. Wright. Take Me to the River is a reverential retrospective which is a combination tribute to the city’s impressive legacy and a tip of the cap to some up-and-coming artists still recording in the region. 
The movie marks the directorial debut of Martin Shore, who tapped Terrence Howard to narrate the documentary. The Oscar-nominated actor also raps and sings in the picture which features the reflections of hip-hop icon Snoop Dogg who pays tributes to the trailblazers that paved the way for him.