Apple Diversity VP Sorry For ‘White Men Can Be Diverse’ Remark

Denise Young Smith, Apple’s Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion, apologized to colleagues over the weekend for misrepresenting Apple’s commitment to diversity, Tech Crunch reported. She provoked backlash last week for saying during a talk at One Young World Summit in Bogotá, Colombia, that White men can be diverse.

“Last week, while attending a summit in Bogota, I made some comments as part of a conversation on the many factors that contribute to diversity and inclusion….I regret the choice of words I used to make this point,” she wrote in an email over the weekend, the report said.

Young Smith’s point was that diversity wasn’t just about race or sexuality. Aamna Mohdin, a panelist at the conference, had asked Young Smith if she planned to “prioritize” Black women. Young Smith responded with “all diversity matters” rhetoric: And I’ve often told people a story– there can be 12 White blue-eyed blonde men in a room and they are going to be diverse too because they’re going to bring a different life experience and life perspective to the conversation.

Young Smith’s comments have since been taken up by racists and male supremacists, Tech Crunch reported: “Diversity of thought” has long been a lever used by critics of the concept of D&I work to push back against meaningful diversity efforts.

Denise Young Smith 12 blue eyed men represent everything BUT diversity. Just ask Dove! Ma’am have a stadium full of seats 🤦🏾‍♀️

— Purpose Doula (@AskTPJ) October 12, 2017

In her email, Young Smith said that she understood why some people took offense to her words. She said that the company’s “commitment… to increasing racial and gender diversity is as strong as it’s ever been,“ which doesn’t say much, as Apple has long had poor diversity numbers. Only 9 percent of the team is Black, and the majority of these employees are in the retail force, the report noted. Young Smith has long pushed the company to do better, pioneering a partnership with the Thurgood Marshall college fund, which seeks to create a hiring

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Maryland Residents Pushing Back Against Mistreatment From Liquor Store

Fed up with mistreatment from storeo wners in their community, thousands of Upper Marlboro are preparing to battle before a liquor control board after a store owner went unpunished for handcuffing a customer.

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Prince George’s County police have said store owners can handcuff a customer in their store, and the prosecutor dropped a second-degree assault charge against him. Seeing no other recourse, more than 5,000 people signed a petition to close Largo Liquors, NBC News Washington reports.

Do not shop at Largo Liquors. They do not respect Black people.

— Feelin' So Energetic (@sixmyths) September 30, 2017

A Facebook video shows the customer arguing with a cashier. In the dispute, the customer knocked over a display on the counter. The owner rushes out and fights with the customer, eventually tackling him to the ground and placing him in handcuffs until the police arrived.

The prosecutor dropped disorderly conduct charges against the customer. But many in the community are dissatisfied with the whole outcome. In addition to the petition drive, many are also writing negative reviews of the store online.

“It makes me feel like I have a family,” the customer told the news outlet. “A family that I don’t even know about.”

SOURCE:  NBC News Washington


Black Lives Matter Creates Interactive Map Of Black-Owned Businesses

Philadelphia Black Business Community Launches ‘iBuyBlack’ Card

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American Airlines Pilot Ejects Activist Tamika Mallory From Flight

Add another racially charged incident to an increasing list of discrimination charges against American Airline.

In the latest incident, a civil rights activist Tamika Mallory complained that an American Airlines pilot kicked her off a plane on Sunday over a seat assignment dispute, the New York Daily News reports.

Mallory, who co-chaired the Women’s March on Washington, told the newspaper that she was traveling from Miami to New York. She changed her seat assignment from a middle seat to an aisle seat at an airport kiosk.

However, an American Airline agent gave her a boarding pass with the middle seat. The pilot overheard the argument and admonished Mallory.

Although she complied and sat in the middle seat, the pilot had her called to the front of the plane before takeoff. In a disrespectful and angry tone, the pilot ordered her to leave the plane. The police came and ushered out Mallory and her traveling companion.

“It definitely was White male aggression,” she told The Daily News. “I was singled out, I was disrespected, and he was trying to intimidate me. I was discriminated against.”

Doesn't matter how much we do and how hard we fight, white men are allowed to treat black women like shit .@AmericanAir

— Tamika D. Mallory (@TamikaDMallory) October 15, 2017

The airline issued this statement, via The Daily News.

“Our team does not tolerate discrimination of any kind. We take these allegations seriously, and we are in the process of reaching out to our colleagues in Miami, as well as Ms. Mallory, to obtain additional information on what transpired during the boarding process.”

In a series of tweets, Mallory pointed out that American Airlines has a history of discrimination:

This is not the first time ppl I know and love have been treated this way by .@AmericanAir. And by today, they have learned NOTHING!

— Tamika D. Mallory (@TamikaDMallory) October 15, 2017

& other ppl stand by and watch it happen because it doesn't affect them. If I have to fight alone, .@AmericanAir will NEVER GET AWAY W/ THIS

— Tamika D. Mallory (@TamikaDMallory) October 15, 2017

Indeed, the airline is no stranger to discrimination claims. Here’s a very short list:


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Obamas Select Prominent Black Artists To Paint Official Portraits

The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery announced on Friday that it  commissioned the museum’s official portraits of former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama.

Artist Kehinde Wiley is the former president’s choice to paint his portrait, and the former first lady chose Amy Sherald.

Kim Sajet, director of the National Portrait Gallery, said in a statement that she’s “absolutely delighted” with the Obamas’ choices.

“Both have achieved enormous success as artists, but even more, they make art that reflects the power and potential of portraiture in the 21st century,” she added.

Quartz reported that Wiley and Sherald will be the first Black artists to paint official presidential portraits for the Smithsonian.

The news outlet noted that Wiley combines Hip-Hop culture with classical motifs in his work. His resume includes portraits of LL Cool J and Ice T in classical European styles.

@BarackObama's portrait will hang at the #Smithsonian's @NPG in Washington D.C.

— Out Magazine (@outmagazine) October 13, 2017

READ MORE:  World Famous Painter Highlights the ‘Grace’ of Black Women With New Work

According to the Smithsonian, Sherald “challenges stereotypes and probes notions of identity” in her paintings of African American subjects.

Baltimore artist Amy Sherald to paint Michelle Obama's official portrait

— Baltimore Sun Arts (@baltsunarts) October 13, 2017

The Baltimore Sun said Sherald is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art where she now teaches. According to the newspaper, she’s known for the use of gray skin tones. Sherald is the first African American and first woman to win the National Portrait Gallery’s Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition.

The two portraits will be unveiled at the museum in early 2018 and will be added to the Portrait Gallery’s permanent collection.

SOURCE:   Quartz, Baltimore Sun

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‘Cops Beat Up My Boyfriend’ Employee Fired After Refusing To Serve Officers


It seems to have flown over the head of a Texas police chief that many are angry about police brutality that, even when caught on video, goes unpunished.

The Dallas Morning News reports that the Whataburger restaurant chain fired an employee on Saturday afternoon who refused to serve two Denison, Texas police officers.

READ MORE:  NYPD To Boycott Dunkin’ Donuts After Workers Refuse To Serve Officers

According to the police account, which Denison Police Chief Jay Burch posted on Facebook, the woman declined to serve the officers because “cops beat up my boyfriend and are racists.” The chief wrote that she also cursed at his officers, and the restaurant manager failed to discipline the worker to avoid getting “into politics.”

.@Whataburger worker fired for refusing to serve police officers

— Fox News (@FoxNews) October 14, 2017

The Facebook post said a police supervisor went to the restaurant to hear the employee’s version of what happened. Burch wrote that the supervisor returned to the station and reviewed the arrest record. The supervisor concluded that the arrest was “routine,” and there were no reported injuries.

Burch wrote that he understands the negative sentiment about the police, but a close read of his statement reveals that he doesn’t understand–downplaying it as “rhetoric.”

“I get it, especially with the anti-police rhetoric from the national media and police-hate groups we see in the country, that many people buy into that rhetoric and dislike police,” he wrote in his Facebook post.

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