Monthly Archives: October 2015

SUNY Plattsburgh’s College Newspaper Prints Racist Illustration, Apologizes After Backlash

By Desire Thompson

The State University of New York at Plattsburgh has apologized for printing a racist illustration alongside an article about diversity in their college newspaper.

The Daily Beast reports the illustration ran in Cardinal Points, a student-operated publication. The article, titled “Minority Admission Rates Examined,” focused on the growth of diversity at the school and others across the nation.

The article was well received by readers – but not so the image of a Black student with “bulging eyes and an exaggerated white mouth,” wearing a cap and gown while walking through a ravaged town complete with broken stop sign, damaged cars, and broken windows.

@SUNYPlattsburgh‘s BSU isn’ t letting the @_cardinalpoints ‘s front page issue go at all. Would you?

— KJayy Persaud (@KJayyIsBhaddd) October 27, 2015

After students questioned why the Black student wasn’t depicted in a more positive light — like reading a book on campus — the staff issued an apology on their website, acknowledging that the illustration is a disconnect from the story and not meant to offend anyone.

The statement from Cardinal Points reads:

Many of you may have seen the illustration on top of the front page of this week’s Cardinal Points, …read more

Source:: Black America Web

#AssaultAtSpringValley: What You Need To Know To Protect Your Teen’s Rights

By Rashida Maples, Esq., Contributor

Spring Valley High School Officer Fired

On Monday, video taken by frightened students in a high school classroom was released, showing a White male police officer physically attempting to restrain an African-American female student at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina. In the video, it’s clear that the student was sitting in a desk when Ben Fields entered the room, approached her, grabbed her by her neck and arms, body slammed her to the floor while she was still entangled in the desk, and dragged her on the floor to the door of the classroom.

It’s not the first time that young Black females have been assaulted by law enforcement officers. But as we call for justice, we also need to stay informed so as to protect ourselves, our families, and our communities. Here is what you need to know about the case and what it means for students nationwide.


According to some of the eyewitnesses, the student was asked to put her cell phone away during class, but did not do so. School officials were called, along with Officer Ben Fields. What transpired next was captured on the cell phones of other students in …read more

Source:: News One

Show Me Your Hands, or Moves, Dancing Officer Says to Teens [WATCH]

By Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Show me your hands, or your dance moves.

A D.C. police officer helped defuse a fight between teenagers in a Washington park by challenging one of them to a dance-off.

Seventeen-year-old Aaliyah Taylor says a woman officer arrived Monday and when she saw Taylor dancing to the popular song, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae),” the officer laughed and said she had better dance moves.

What happened next was a dance-off between the officer and the girl. Onlookers recorded the dance battle on their cellphones, according to The Washington Post, which posted the video.

The officer said if she won, the teens had to leave the area.

“Instead of us fighting, she tried to turn it around and make it something fun,” Taylor said. “I never expected cops to be that cool. There are some good cops.”

The officer matched Taylor with each step. Taylor said the officer would have kept going, but after several minutes of dancing, the teen got tired, so the two hugged and everyone left the area.

Taylor later posted a video of the dance-off on Facebook, where it had been viewed hundreds of thousands of times in less than 24 hours.

The officer told the newspaper she didn’t want to be identified, …read more

Source:: Black America Web

7-Year-Old Girl Is Brain Dead After Choking On School Lunch

By Krystal Franklin,

The parents of a 7-year-old Brooklyn girl are blaming school staffers after their now brain-dead daughter choked on her public-school lunch.

New York Post reports:

Noelia Echavarria‘s family continues to keep her on life support at NYU Langone Medical Center in hopes “she’ll make her way back,” family lawyer David Perecman said.

The first-grader choked on a sandwich last Wednesday at PS 250 in Williamsburg. Her parents suspect she may have tried to finish too quickly, as she had complained about being rushed by teachers in the past.

“They should have saved her life,” mom Ana Iris Santiagosaid through tears. The mother had to be hospitalized herself after she had multiple seizures from seeing her child hooked up to the ventilator.

A private EMT who happened to be driving past the site transporting a nursing-home patient was hailed down by a school worker and tried to help Noelia.

“She was already turning blue and that takes awhile,” said the medic, Qwasi Reid, who works for Assist Ambulance in Brooklyn.

Reid thinks that the young girl had been choking for at least five minutes before he got there — and added that no one in the building seemed to be helping her. “People were screaming, but no …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Louisiana Man Cashes In After 45 Years Of Saving Jars Of Pennies

By Krystal Franklin,


Otha Anders has gained national attention for saving his collection of pennies…after 45 years.

USA Today reports:

“I became convinced that spotting a lost or dropped penny was an additional God-given incentive reminding me to always be thankful,” said Anders, 73. “There have been days where I failed to pray and more often than not, a lost or dropped penny would show up to remind me.”

Fifteen five-gallon plastic water jugs and half a million pennies later, Anders on Tuesday deposited $5,136.14 into his account to go toward a recent dental bill.

He cashed in the coins to the Ruston Origin Bank, in Ruston, La.

After that first coin, Anders said his penny pile began to grow and he ultimately stopped spending pennies and always made sure whenever he made a purchase, his change contained at least three to four pennies.

Bank Vice President Jennie Cole said it was not a typical day at the bank when Anders had his collection of pennies rolled in on a dolly, but Anders is a longtime customer who they wanted to help.

“We value his business, as we do all of our customers,” she said. “But if we can help Anders with his endeavors, we are happy to do …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Georgia Twins Denied Learner’s Permits Because Computer Can’t Tell Them Apart [VIDEO]

By Desire Thompson

A set of hopeful Georgia twins were disappointed to hear they wouldn’t be able to obtain their learner’s permits because the DMV thought they were the same person, CBS affiliate WSPA reports.

Alicia and Alicen Kennedy, 15, told reporters they went to the Department of Motor Vehicles to get their learner’s permits, but were turned away due to the program’s facial recognition software. After filling out paperwork and taking their pictures, the system denied the teens because it believed they were committing fraud.

The girls weren’t able to take the test and had to go home empty-handed.

WSPA reports:

…read more

Source:: Black America Web

Raven-Symone Blames Spring Valley Student For Assault: “Get Off Your Phone”

By Bruce Goodwin II

Just weeks after Raven-Symoné‘s offensive “Watermelondrea” rant, The View co-host has offered another unpopular opinion on the Spring Valley High School assault.

After the video of Officer Ben Fields grabbing a high school student by her neck and dragging her along the floor hit the net, Raven felt it was important to note the teenager was the one defying authority.

The girl was told multiple times to get off the phone. There’s not right or reason for him to be doing this type of harm, that’s ridiculous,” she said. “But at the same time, you gotta follow the rules in school. First of all, why are there cellphones in school? This shouldn’t even be a problem to begin with, and he shouldn’t have been acting like that on top of it.” Co-host Michelle Collins brought up the officer’s prior history of violent events, while Paula Faris’ main argument was that children “lack respect for authority,” believing it’s ultimately the parents’ fault.

Later in the discussion, Raven was able to acknowledge that the officer’s history with violence was a red flag, but she still held strong to her original opinion. “He was actually sued for false arrest, …read more

Source:: Black America Web

Miles College Lockdown Lifted After One Student Killed On Campus

By Krystal Franklin,

A unidentified student was shot dead on the campus of Miles College Wednesday night. reports:

The shooting occurred at an apartment on campus, the college said in an email to faculty and students shortly after midnight,, a local news network, reported. The historically black college campus is located in Fairfield, Alabama, six miles west of the state’s largest city of Birmingham. College officials reportedly urged students and staff to exercise caution.

Officials lifted campus lockdown and two suspects were arrested, authorities told, another local news network. The identity of the deceased student was not released, but authorities said the student was from Mobile, a city about 2,014 miles southwest of Fairfield.

No other details were immediately available about the incident. The Fairfield Police Department has launched an investigation into the shooting.

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(Photo Source: Miles College Twitter)

…read more

Source:: Black America Web

UPDATE: School Officer Fired After Tossing Student in Class

By MEG KINNARD, Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A deputy was fired Wednesday after video showed him flipping a teen backward out of her desk and tossing her across a classroom, with the sheriff saying the officer did not follow proper procedures and training.

Richland County Senior Deputy Ben Fields was told of his firing late Wednesday morning, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said. Fields had been a school resource officer at Spring Valley High School.

The student was being disruptive and refused to leave the classroom despite being told by a teacher and administrator to do so, Lott said, and that’s when Fields was brought in Monday to remove her from the class. She again refused, and Fields told her she was under arrest, Lott said.

She continued to refuse, and at that point the video shows the deputy flipping the teen backward and then throwing her across the room. At that point, Lott said, Fields did not use proper procedure.

“I can tell you what he should not have done: He should not have thrown that student,” Lott said during a news conference.

The agency’s training unit looked at video of the incident and determined Fields did not follow proper training and procedure, the sheriff said.

Calls for …read more

Source:: Black America Web