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The Power and Limits of Speech:

Reflections on a Month of Headlines

Of course, Black Wall St media covered Diane Abbott. Hackney MP Diane Abbott had the Labour party whip suspended following comments she made about racism in a letter to the Observer.

Her suspension for a “clumsy” comment has brought the issue of racism in politics to the forefront once again. As someone who remembers ‘No Jews, No Blacks, No Irish’ slogans in this country I can’t say I personally agree with Abbotts claim that racism does not affect other communities.

Her perspective may be vastly disagreed with, but it seems that when so many others express explicitly racist opinions, anyone who stands up to them is called ‘too woke’ and is quickly reminded of ‘freedom of speech.’ Does Abbotts ignorance over the realities that face other races mean she is deserving of outright abuse? Or does she merely need to be informed of the facts?

My issue in the response is the amount of personal abuse Abbott has received. As a black female MP, Abbott has received ten times as much abuse as any other MP.

It’s not just her this applies to, Black women are 84% more likely to be abused on social media than white women, according to a 2018 Amnesty International study and Abbotts recent blunder brings home to me just how quick people resort to abuse when it comes to black women speaking, misspeaking, or making a mistake.

Also, in Black Wall St media this month was an inspiring piece titled, Man in the mirror” Reflecting on 30 Years Since the Murder of Stephen Lawrence.

Like everyone, I am constantly inspired by the bravery and strategy of his family, not just Doreen but Stephen’s father and brother, too.

Still I have to admit they revisiting this story left me tired at how little has changed.

Yes, we’ve had some great conversations surrounding race, race attacks and knife crime, but where’s the change? In my mind, three decades of raising awareness, protesting, and campaigning should equate to tangible change.

An event is being organized to honor and support Sasha Johnson, a prominent Black Lives Matter activist who suffered life-changing injuries in a shooting incident at a party in Peckham, London in May 2021.

The event, called “Sasha Johnson Day”, will take place on May 20th, with venue details to be announced soon. Its purpose is to celebrate Johnson’s work and raise funds to support her and her family during her rehabilitation.

The event also aims to promote Johnson’s legacy, encourage community cohesion, and boost her GoFundMe campaign, which has a target of £20,000.

Four men were due to stand trial in connection with the incident, but the prosecution has been dropped.

The event organizers are encouraging supporters to attend and show their support for Johnson and her work.

The event is important in keeping Johnson’s memory alive and honoring her selfless desire to give a voice to the voiceless.

Diane Greyson

This was touched on in Dianne Greyson’s article (Ethnicity Pay Gap). In it, she unraveled the Commission for Race and Ethnic Disparity report’s denial of the existence of institutional racism. Their report made public in 2021 was slammed by the United Nations.

If I’m being totally honest with you my readers, and you know I like to ‘keep it real’, I feel a little tired of the battle this month as a Black woman.

We fight with our male counterparts for equality and equity; we are up against our Caucasian females, we climb over intersections, struggle to be heard and more. Some days it feels like there’s so many hills to climb.

Thankfully as always, Black Wall St Media’s team of journalists gave me a few things to smile about.

Harry Belafonte also died this month. Of course, it’s sad to hear but at 96, I was inspired at the positive legacy he spent those years carving out and the wonderful accomplishments he left in his wake.

Jamaican-American musician, actor and human rights activist Harry Belafonte joined the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s. He became one of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s closest confidants.

Over the years he organized demonstrations, raised money and contributed his personal funds to keep movement activities going.

He paved the way for so many black actors without ever compromising his beliefs or his work in the diaspora.

Reading about his work left me feeling even more passionate about the importance of ‘sending the lift back 

Harry Belafonte, the legendary singer, actor, and social justice activist, has passed away at the age of 96. Belafonte was born in Harlem, New York City, in 1927 and grew up during the Great Depression.

He began his career in the 1940s as a jazz musician and went on to become one of the most successful performers of his time.

Belafonte was known for his signature smooth voice and his ability to captivate audiences with his music. He was also a talented actor, starring in numerous films and television shows throughout his career. However, it was his tireless activism that truly set him apart.

Belafonte was a committed civil rights activist and worked closely with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the 1950s and 1960s. He was a vocal advocate for racial equality and used his platform to raise awareness about the injustices faced by Black people in America.

In addition to his activism, Belafonte was also a humanitarian who dedicated much of his life to helping others. He was a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and worked to raise awareness about poverty and social injustice around the world.

Belafonte’s contributions to the world of music, film, and social justice activism will be remembered for generations to come. His legacy will continue to inspire and empower people around the world to fight for a better future.

Harry Belafonte is survived by his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and fans around the world.

Also in Black Wall St Media was news of the world witnessing a historic moment when two female leaders met in Tanzania.

United States Vice President Kamala Harris met with Tanzania’s President, Samia Suluhu Hassan, who is the first female head of state in Africa.

This meeting marks an important milestone for women in politics, and it is a testament to the progress that has been made towards gender equality.

Now there’s a headline that eased my weariness!

As we ease into May, I hope that I’ll begin to feel a little less tired by the headlines and a little more renewed. I look forward to sharing the highs and lows of our wondrous diaspora with you next month. Until then, stay safe, sane, and kind.

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