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Spike Lee Releases Powerful Video Juxtaposing ‘Do The Right Thing’ With Murders Of George Floyd & Eric Garner 

Roger Ebert's Film Festival 2014:

Source: Timothy Hiatt / Getty

When it comes to speaking out about social injustice, Spike Lee is known for not holding his tongue.

On Monday (June 1), during an interview with CNN over the current unrest taking place in cities across the country, Spike Lee premiered a short video featuring clips from the intense and crucial scene in his iconic film, Do The Right Thing, Juxtaposed with the real videos of the murders of both Eric Garner and George Floyd at the hands of police.

“What we’re seeing today is not new,” Lee said. “We’ve seen this again and again and again, and people are asking the same questions, like: ‘Why are people rioting? Why are people doing this?’ Because people are fed up and people are tired of the debasing, the killing of black bodies. That’s what this country is built upon.”

Titled “3 Brothers,” the short begins with a title card reading “Will History Stop Repeating Itself?”, and then cuts between clips of Floyd and Garner’s encounters with police, and Radio Raheem’s death by strangulation from the film.

Spike Lee also took time to address viewers who were denouncing the protests or calling them violent by pointing out that Black people have had a history of being dealt with violently in the country,

“The attack on black bodies has been here from the get-go,” says filmmaker Spike Lee, responding to protests over George Floyd’s death. “I am not condoning all this other stuff but I understand why people are doing what they are doing.”

“3 Brothers” marks the second short film that Spike Lee has released since March. His previous short, “NEW YORK NEW YORK,” was a love letter to the city of New York and its people during the coronavirus crisis.

In addition to his film shorts, Lee also on the eve of the release for his highly anticipated film Da 5 Bloods, which is about four African-American vets who return to Vietnam to find buried treasure and the remains of their fallen leader, is scheduled to be released via Netflix on June 12th.

Check out the trailer below and if you would like to check out “3 Brothers” click here.

#BlackLivesMatter: How You Can Help From Home Locally & Nationally 

Indianapolis Protest Day 2

Source: David Woods / Radio One Indianapolis

The racist deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and countless other Black people caused protesters in cities across the country to pour into the streets and demand justice in the midst of a global pandemic. We put together a list of vetted organizations that do on-the-ground work and other credible resources including bail funds, petitions, and contacts that you can use to help make a difference in this fight for justice and against racism and oppression.

National Resources

Black Lives Matter: The national movement that builds power to bring justice, healing, and freedom to Black people across the globe.

Bail Fund Networks

  • National Bail Fund Network: The National Bail Fund Network is made up of over sixty community bail and bond funds across the country
  • The Bail Project: The Bail Project works nationally, including several cities where protests are taking place, including Los Angeles, Louisville, and New York City.
  • ActBlue Bail Funds: These 37 bail funds include the Philadelphia Bail Fund, the LGBTQ Freedom Fund, the Community Justice Exchange National Bail Fund Network, and the Mississippi Bail Fund Collective.

Justice Reform Organizations

  • Campaign Zero: Funds donated to Campaign Zero support the analysis of policing practices across the country, research to identify effective solutions to end police violence, technical assistance to organizers leading police accountability campaigns and the development of model legislation and advocacy to end police violence nationwide.
  • National Police Accountability Project: the central mission of NPAP is to promote the accountability of law enforcement officers and their employers for violations of the Constitution and the laws of the United States.
  • Prison Policy Initiative: the Prison Policy Initiative produces cutting edge research to expose the broader harm of mass criminalization and then sparks advocacy campaigns to create a more just society.
  • The Sentencing Project: The Sentencing Project works for a fair and effective U.S. criminal justice system by promoting reforms in sentencing policy, addressing unjust racial disparities and practices, and advocating for alternatives to incarceration.
  • Unicorn Riot: Unicorn Riot is a non-profit media organization dedicated to fair, on-the-ground reporting on civil disobedience, police brutality, and white supremacy.

Racial Justice Organizations

  • Showing Up for Racial Justice: SURJ is a national network of groups and individuals working to undermine white supremacy and to work toward racial justice.
  • Know Your Rights Camp: Founded by Colin Kaepernick, their mission is to advance the liberation and well-being of Black and Brown communities through education, self-empowerment, mass-mobilization and the creation of new systems that elevate the next generation of change leaders.
  • NAACP Legal Defense Fund: The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. is America’s premier legal organization fighting for racial justice.

Petitions

are just one tool we have to demand change and accountability from those who enable police brutality. You can find and sign some of the major petitions demanding justice here:

  • Justice for George Floyd: Calling on Mayor Jacob Frey and DA Mike Freeman to beg to have the officers involved in the murder of George Floyd fired and for charges to be filed immediately.
  • Justice for Breonna Taylor: Calling on Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Commonwealth’s Attorney Thomas Wine to fire and charge the police officers involved in the murder of Breonna Taylor.
  • Justice for Ahmaud Arbery: Calls on Travis and Greg McMichael to be convicted on charges related to the killing of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery.
  • Black Lives Matter: #DefundThePolice: this petition demand acknowledgment and accountability for the Black community’s pain and injustice, divestment in the police force and investment in the health and prosperity of Black communities
  • #WeCantBreathe: this petition demands justice for George Floyd and his family.

Justice for George Floyd

George Floyd was killed by police officers while handcuffed in Minneapolis, Minnesota on On May 25, 2020.

Two fundraisers have been set up in George Floyd’s memory by his family.

  • Official George Floyd Memorial Fundcreated by his brother Philonise Floyd. This fund is established to cover funeral and burial expenses, mental and grief counseling, lodging and travel for all court proceedings, and to assist our family in the days to come as we continue to seek justice for George.
  • The George Floyd Family Fund: created by George Floyd’s sister, Bridgett Floyd, helps the Floyd family with traveling & other expenses.

Justice for Breonna Taylor

On the night of March 13th, 2020, the Louisville Metro Police sprayed Breonna Taylor’s home with 20 rounds, shooting Breonna 8 times, killing her in her bed.

Justice for Ahmaud Arbery

25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery was out for a jog when he was chased down, shot, and killed by two white supremacists in Glynn County, Ga. on February 23, 2020.

  • I With Ahmaud: Official website that allows you to take actions related to the justice of Ahmaud Arbery.

Local resources

Alabama

Montgomery, Alabama

California

Los Angeles, California 

  • Los Angeles Black Lives Matter Chapter: Supports organizers and fighting to adopt a “People’s Budget” that reallocates police funding to vulnerable communities.
  • Peoples City Council Freedom Fund: Los Angeles-based fund helping to pay for legal support, bail, fines, and court fees for arrested protesters in the city, as well as medical bills and transportation for injured protesters, supplies for field medics, and direct support to L.A.’s BLM chapter.
  • Covid-19 Mutual Aid Network – Los AngelesA coalition of grassroots organizations in Los Angeles committed to providing aid to the city’s vulnerable populations during COVID-19.
  • The Orange County Bail Fund: Helps pay bonds for protesters in Orange County.

Bay Area, California – Oakland/ San Francisco/ San Jose: 

Sacramento, California

  • NorCal Resist: is helping provide bail funds for arrested protesters.

San Diego, California

Colorado

 

District of Columbia

Florida

Miami, Florida 

  • Free Them AllFund organized by the group Fempower to post bond in Miami.
  • The LGBTQ Freedom Fund: Dedicates their bail support to protesters, and have started an arrest hotline at 305-209-7380.

Georgia

Atlanta, Georgia 

Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Rockford, Illinois

Winnebago Bond Project: Coordinates bail support for protesters.

 

Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky

Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana

Maryland

Baltimore, Maryland

Massachusetts

Michigan

Detriot, Michigan 

  • Detroit Bail FundBail fund launched by a local activist to provide relief to the city’s protesters.

Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri 

St Louis, Missouri 

  • STL Mutual AidMutual aid fund providing relief to the city of St. Louis.

 

Minnesota

Minneapolis/ St Paul:

  • Call Governor Walz of Minnesota: To voice the demand for justice for George Floyd and replacement of District Attorney Mike Freeman with the state attorney general: (651)201-3400
  • North Star Health Collective: a Minnesota-based organization that provides medical supplies to those in need during protests
  • Minnesota Freedom FundCommunity-based fund set up to pay criminal bail and immigration bonds for individuals who have been arrested while protesting police brutality. This has become one of the most prominent bail funds, providing relief to protesters in Minneapolis seeking justice for George Floyd.
  • Black Visions CollectiveMinnesota-based black, trans, and queer-led organization committed to dismantling systems of oppression and violence.
  • Reclaim the Block: Coalition that advocates for and invests in community-led safety initiatives in Minneapolis neighborhoods.
  • Public GoodsMutual aid fund for the residents of Minneapolis public housing, organized by Defend Glendale & Public Housing Coalition (DGPHC).
  • Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en La Lucha: a Minneapolis worker’s center, is taking donations of food and money to support organizers and helping pressure local government.
  • The Twin Cities Recovery Project: has been holding grief and trauma groups which are peer run and connected to licensed therapists.
  • Know Your Rights Camp: Colin Kaepernick’s organization established a legal defense initiative to provide legal services for protesters on the ground in Minneapolis.

New York

New York City, New York 

  • The Brooklyn Community Bail Fund: is bailing out protesters and pressuring Governor Cuomo to take action on defunding New York City police.
  • Free Them All For Public Health: Raises money for protesters arrested in New York via Venmo. Venmo @BailOutNYCMay. NOTE: A false Venmo @BailOutNYCMayH is circulating, report and avoid it.
  • Free Them All For Public Health: Raises money for protesters arrested in New York. People can donate by sending money to @BailOutNYCMay on Venmo.
  • Brooklyn Bail FundCommunity bail fund for Brooklyn’s incarcerated individuals. The nonprofit recently pivoted its focus to bail reform, but organizers have committed to helping those arrested in this week’s protests and are providing support to other bail funds across the country.
  • Mutual Aid NYCA collection of mutual aid groups in NYC – many of them founded during the COVID-19 pandemic – including bail funds, homeless coalitions, family sanctuaries, immigration advocacy, PPE production and distribution, sex worker relief funds and more.

Buffalo, New York 

Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada 

North Carolina

Durham, North Carolina  

Charlotte, North Carolina 

Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio

  • Cleveland Pandemic ResponseMutual aid hub for the city of Cleveland, with a list of resources, requests for deliveries, volunteer opportunities and more.

Columbus, Ohio

Cincinnati, Ohio

Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

Tennessee

Nashville, Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee

  • Just City Memphis: Posts bail for protesters, in addition to their regular bail-out schedule.

 

Texas

Project RoarCommunity fund dedicated to providing resources and outreach programs to Texas’ rural areas. They’ve expanded their services to include emergency jail and bail.
Mission: “Some of the most marginalized and neglected communities are in your city, but also lie in the county areas outside the city limits. The need for services in rural areas is often overlooked. Engaging the community will include canvassing and blockwalking, phonebanking and word of mouth, public service announcements and community service announcements, etc.”

Houston, Texas

Dallas, Texas

  • Luke 4:18 Bail FundBail fund overseen by Faith in Texas committed to posting bail for individuals in Dallas.

Austin, Texas 

  • 400+1 Bail Fund: The fund is being directed toward protesters in the city.

San Antonio, Texas 

Virginia 

Richmond, Virginia

Washington

Seattle, Washington 

Northwest Community Bail Fund: Providing cash bail to arrested individuals in the Seattle metropolitan area.

Wisconsin

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jay-Z & Team Roc Takes Out Full-Page Newspaper Ads Dedicated To George Floyd 

The makeshift memorial outside Cup Foods where George Floyd was murdered by a Minneapolis police officer

Source: Jason Armond / Getty

The time is way past making where you stand known. Today (June 2), Jay-Z and Team Roc have taken out full-page newspaper ads expressing their support of George Floyd, the Black man whose murder at the hands of police has inspired protests that have gripped the nation and the world.

Team Roc is the philanthropic wing of the “99 Problems” rapper and mogul’s Roc Nation. The ad features a long quote from the speech Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered during a sermon in Selma, Alabama, on March 8, 1965. That makes it the day after “Bloody Sunday” when peaceful civil rights protesters were attacked and beaten by police on Edmund Pettus Bridge.

Sound familiar?

“A man dies when he refuses to stand up for that which is right. A man dies when he refuses to stand up for justice. A man dies when he refuses to take a stand for that which is true,” reads part of King’s sermon—he would be assassinated a little over three years later.

The “letter” is signed by a number of celebs, activists and thought leaders including Michael Eric Dyson Van Jones, Charlamagne tha God, Angela Rye and activists from organizations like The Innocence Project and Until Freedom. A few notable signatures include the parents of Botham Jean, DJ Henry and Antwon Rose II—whose children were all killed by police.

The ad in today’s See the New York Times, the Denver Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Atlanta Journal Constitution, among others. There are more ads schedule to run in Wednesday’s newspapers as well.

Protests and demonstrations seeking justice for Floyd’s murder continue throughout the United States. Rest in power George Floyd.

HHW Gaming: Judge Tosses Out Maryland Players Jared Nickens & Jaylen Brantley ‘Fortnite’ Lawsuit 

Formern Maryland Men's Basketball Players 'Fornite' Lawsuit Tossed Out

Source: The Washington Post / Getty

Epic Games just scored a victory in one the lawsuits levied against its game Fortnite.

The insanely-popular and highly addictive video game Fortnite came under fire when it was accused of jacking popular dances and selling them as “emotes” in the online shooter. Former Maryland men’s basketball players Jared Nickens and Jaylen Brantley saw U.S. District Judge Paul Grimm in Maryland toss their lawsuit against the game.

ESPN reports that Grimm ruled on Friday (May.29) “that the Copyright Act preempts claims that Jared Nickens and Jaylen Brantley filed in February 2019 against Epic Games Inc., creator of the wildly popular online shooting game.”

Initially, Nickens and Brantley claimed that Epic Games “misappropriated their identities” when the North Carolina-based company jacked the “Running Man” challenge dance moves and digitally copied it into the game. But interestingly enough, Nickens and Brantley didn’t create the dance, two high school students from New Jersey, Kevin Vincent, and Jeremiah Hall invented the dance. Nickens and Brantley helped it go viral.

According to ESPN, Nickens and Brantley copyright lawsuit claimed “the “Running Man” emote — a celebratory dance in Fortnite — that players can purchase for their characters is identical to the dance that Nickens and Brantley took credit for creating.”

In his explanation, Grimm pointed out that the critical question is if the plaintiffs had a claim that is “qualitatively different” from the rights the Copyright Act protects.

“And here Plaintiffs claim is based on Epic Games allegedly ‘capturing and digitally copying’ the Running Man dance to create the Fortnite emote that ‘allows the player’s avatars to execute the Running Man identically to Plaintiffs’ version. This is squarely within the rights protected by the Copyright Act,” Grimm explained.

Grimm also threw out their “claims for invasion of privacy, unfair competition and unjust enrichment based on preemption under the Copyright Act.” He also tossed their “trademark claims and claims accusing the company of unfair competition and “false designation of origin” under the Lanham Act.

Grimm wrote:

“Plaintiffs seek to place the same square peg into eight round holes in search of a cause of action against Epic Games for its use of the Running Man dance in its game Fortnite. But Plaintiffs’ claims that Epic Games copied the dance do not support any of their theories.”

Welp.

Nickens and Brantley were seeking $5 million in damages. They weren’t the only people to sue Epic Games, rapper 2 Milly, Fresh Prince of Bel Aire star Alfonso Ribeiro also tried to get some coins from the game studio. Ribeiro dropped his lawsuit last year after the U.S. Copyright Office denied him copyright for the “Carlton” dance.

We still hope Epic Games does the right thing and throw some cash their way for dance moves.

Photo: The Washington Post / Getty

To Show Solidarity With Black Lives Matter, Grindr Is Removing Ethnicity Filters 

Grindr Removes Ethnicity Filter In Act of Solidarity With BLM Movement

Source: Thomas Trutschel / Getty

Companies are recognizing the moment going on in the country and are making sure they are on the right side of history.

Founded in 2009, Grindr, the social networking dating app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people, is showing its allyship to protesters across the country who are out in the streets risking their lives following the fatal arrest of George Floyd. The app announced via a statement that it will be removing the ethnicity filter in solidarity with the #BlackLivesMatter movement and hundreds of thousands of queer people of color.

Per Grindr:

“We stand in solidarity with the #BlackLivesMatter movement and the hundreds of thousands of queer people of color who log in to our app every day. We will not be silent, and we will not be inactive. Today we are making donations to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute and Black Lives Matter and urge you to do the same if you can. We will continue to fight racism on Grindr, both through dialogue with our community and a zero-tolerance policy for racism and hate speech on our platform. As a part of this commitment, and based on your feedback, we have decided to remove the ethnicity filter from our next release.”

Grindr also shared a link with its 177 thousand Twitter followers directing to where they could support the #BlackLivesMatter movement as well.

Shoutout to Grindr and the many other companies showing how to be an ally in the fight for justice.

Photo: Thomas Trutschel / Getty

Drake Donates $100K To National Bail Out Program Which Helps Free Black Mothers 

Source: TORONTO, ON – AUGUST 05: Drake attends the Drake And Lebron James Pool Party In Toronto For Caribana 2017 on August 5, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Johnny Nunez/Getty Images for Remy Martin) Uploaded By Godspeed

While the people continue to fight in the name of social justice we can not ignore that COVID-19 is still a real thing. Drake has just provided many families some serious support.

As spotted on Complex the Canadian MC has just given some hope to the hopeless during the pandemic via a very generous donation. According to the report he has given $100,000 dollars to the National Bail Out; a Black-led and Black-centered collective of abolitionist organizers, lawyers and activists building a community-based movement to support our folks and end systems of pretrial detention and ultimately mass incarceration.

On Monday, June 1 fellow Torontonian Mustafa The Poet tagged Champagne Papi and The Weeknd on an Instagram Story post urging both talents to donate. “My Toronto Kings @champagnepapi @theweeknd,” he wrote. “Swipe up & match my donation but add 3 zeros! Let’s help reunite black families” he wrote. Drizzy apparently heard him loud and clear by replying “say less brother”. He promptly donated $100,000 to the cause.

The Weeknd doubled down as well with a matching donation to National Bail Out, an additional $200,000 to the Black Lives Matter organization and $200,000 to Colin Kaepernicks’s Know Your Rights Camp.

In May National Bail Out had confirmed they had reunited 69 mothers with their families.

 

Photo: Euan Cherry/WENN.com

Before You Participate In Blackout Tuesday, Here Is What You Need To Know 

Blackout Tuesday Protest Inadvertently

Source: NurPhoto / Getty

Social media users are partaking in Blackout Tuesday social protests, but their act of solidarity could be hurting the Black Lives Matter movement in the process.

The protest was initially organized by workers in the music industry, and Instagram users have been sharing photos of black squares in solidarity with black victims of police violence. The noble act is also causing a huge issue as well. Instagram users are using the “BlackLivesMatter hashtag in their post’s caption and are inadvertently blacking out posts related to the movement that contains essential information for those in streets peacefully protesting and blocking out videos of police misconduct.

Rapper Chuck Inglish and singer Kehlani pointed out what was happening with posts and retweet a user who shared a video of the #BlackLivesMatter hashtag being taken over by black squares.

Another Twitter user who goes by the handle @anthoknees urged users in a tweet to “stop posting black squares under the hashtag on Instagram. it is intentionally and unintentionally hiding critical information we are using on the ground and online.”

Singer Tatianna pointed out that posting off the black boxes is “rendering the hashtag useless.”

These recent developments are leading some to question the Blackout Tuesday protest organized by two Black women Jamila Thomas, senior director of marketing at Atlantic Records, and Brianna Agyemang, a former Atlantic executive.

So it’s definitely not the ops, but this could definitely be chalked up to poor organizing and not enough information being shared. If you haven’t posted a black square on your timeline yet and are planning to, remember DO NOT USE THE #BLACKLIVEMATTERS HASHTAG.

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If you want to help or donate, you can hit these links below:

Campaign Zero

Reclaim the Block

Minnesota Freedom Fund

Brooklyn Bail Fund

ActBlue

Photo: NurPhoto / Getty

Floyd Mayweather Will Pay For George Floyd’s Funeral 

Source: Photo: Derrick Salters/WENN.com

Even though we are not able to bring our brothers and sisters back the community continues to rally behind their legacies. One of the greatest living athletes is stepping as he should.

As reported by The Grio last week Floyd Mayweather offered to pay for the funeral expenses of George Floyd. According to Leonard Ellerbe, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions, the Floyd family has accepted his offer. “He’ll probably get mad at me for saying that, but yes, [Mayweather] is definitely paying for the funeral,” he told ESPN on Monday, June 1. “Floyd has done these kind of things over the last 20 years,” he added.

The gesture came about through an unexpected six degrees of separation. Anzel Jennings, CEO of The Money Team Record Label, apparently grew up with George Floyd in Houston, Texas. Jason Lee of Hollywood Unlocked spoke to Jennings and reports that Anzel reached out to the family on behalf of the boxer. He will reportedly pay for three ceremonies, one in Houston, Minnesota and Charlotte, North Carolina. A fourth is tentatively planned and Mayweather has agreed to bear the costs for that funeral as well. Lee also opened up about his conversation with Mayweather saying “I felt it was important to share this because his voice has a global impact that needs to be heard, especially during these times,” he explained.

George Floyd’s was brutally murdered by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. He was arrested on May 29 and is charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Photo: George Floyd

L.A. Police Encourage White Woman To Spray Paint “BLM” & “George Floyd”? 

Sit-in in solidarity with George Floyd and all victims of...

Source: Pacific Press / Getty

It’s not secret that police officers treat white people a whole helluva lot different than Black and Brown Americans but encouraging vandalism in the name of George Floyd?! That a whole new level of “WTF?!”

Yesterday TMZ posted a video of LAPD officers not only encouraging a white woman to continue spray panting “BLM” on a smashed store front, but even instructed her to include George Floyd’s name in her bombing.

Well at that a b*tch.

After seeing she had a greenlight to vandalize while white, she proceeded to write “Floyd” on the business window much to the entertainment of the boys in blue in attendance. We can only imagine how things would’ve turned out had that woman been a person of color.

Elsewhere police have been recorded pushing around and assaulting peaceful protestors of color who want nothing to do with the riots, looting or vandalism as it takes away from the message the protests are meant to represent: Black Lives Matter.

As for the cops who encouraged the destruction of property, officials say they’re reviewing the incident. Sure, guy.