The Weeknd slams the Grammy’s

The Weeknd Accuses Grammys of 'Corruption' Over Nomination Shutout - Variety

Not long after Grammy nominations were announced Tuesday morning the Weeknd took to Twitter to share his thoughts about the award ceremony.

In said tweet, the “Blinding Lights” singer said, “The Grammys remain corrupt. You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency…”

This tweet comes following the MTV Video Music Awards where The Weeknd not only performed but won several awards and nominations. Despite this being the case, The Weeknd was completely absent from the Grammy’s 2020 bill.

Many have found this strange, including the Weeknd himself. This year the Canada-born crooner released his first full length project in four years. The leading single that came before it “Blinding Lights” broke several records on the Billboard Hot R&B Songs chart. Not only was the single his seventh number one on the chart, which made him the artist with the most number ones on the chart’s history, it also stayed on the chart for record-shattering 36 weeks.

The Weeknd is not the only one today who had choice words to share about the Grammy’s. Nicki Minaj also took to Twitter reflecting on a previous time she felt snubbed by the Grammys after the release of her debut album Pink Friday.

It was also announced this month that The Weeknd is set to perform in the Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime show next year. While some have speculated that this may have something to do with his Grammy snubs no official statement has been made confirming or denying this rumor.

Kanye West throws in the towel for 2020 election

Kanye West the Atlanta-born rapper turned presidential candidate took to Twitter last night as the ballots were being counted officially conceding in the election whilst proclaiming, “KANYE 2024.”

According to Deadline, West garnered over 60,000 votes in the 12 states where he appeared on the ballot.

Here’s an official state-by-state breakdown from the AP:

Arkansas: 4,040
Colorado: 6,254
Idaho: 3,631
Iowa: 3,202
Kentucky: 6,259
Louisiana: 4,894
Minnesota: 7,789
Mississippi: 3,277
Oklahoma: 5,590
Tennessee: 10,216
Utah: 4,344
Vermont: 1,265

West was a latecomer to the election announcing his bid in early July. In an interview with Forbes, West announced he would be running under an independent party known simply as “The Birthday Party” effectively renouncing his prior support of President Donald Trump.

His initial platform was primarily focused on his personal biblical ideals. In the same interview with Forbes, West denounced vaccines, abortion and the death penalty.

West would later officially reveal his platform on his official website kanye2020.country, which focused on religious freedom, equality and peace.

During this period, West made headlines due to his health, rhetoric and constant push to be recognized as a legitimate candidate. In the states where he was not on the written ballot, West encouraged his followers to “WRITE IN KANYE WEST.”

On election day, not only did West reaffirm he had never voted before but he also confirmed he would be voting for himself and himself only.

While Kanye certainly gained a lot of notoriety from his campaign as it turns out he was not the most popular third party candidate of this election. Jo Jorgensen who was running under the libertarian party according to the AP received 1,604,519 total votes as of today.

With that being said these numbers are very little compared to the 70 and 67 million voted held by Biden and Trump respectively. Only time will tell what these numbers will translate to in the real election.

eBay officially launches sneaker authentication program to stop fake products

Online marketplace, eBay, launches their newest authentication program today in order to end the vending of counterfeit sneakers.

The original program, “Authenticity Guarantee” was initially only available for watches over $2,000 in the U.S. However, not unlike their consignment competitors StockX and Goat they’ve extended their program to “new and pre-owned collectible sneakers sold on eBay for over $100 in the U.S.”

The sneaker marketplace has become one of the largest and most active online. According to eBay, there are over half a million sneaker listings on their site each day and every 1.5 seconds a sneaker is sold.

“Authentication has become an expectation for today’s consumers in categories of high passion and high value, and this program makes eBay the most attractive platform for enthusiasts in these categories.” says SVP and General Manager of eBay North America, Jordan Sweetnam.

Here’s how eBay’s new Authenticity Guarantee works: Once a sneakers purchase is made it is first shipped to an independent third-party authentication facility. There said sneaker is given a ” rigorous assessment” before being sent to the buyer via expedited shipping.

The program is also designed to work inversely. For the sellers who offer returns the returning sneakers will go through the verification process again to ensure the same item is given back to the seller.

Verified sneakers are said to come complete with its very own eBay tag signifying its authenticity, similar to StockX’s trademark green tag.

This is not the first time eBay has taken jabs at StockX. Back in April when StockX announced they would be adding a new 3 percent processing fee to all subsequent purchases eBay’s twitter immediately fired back in a tweet that read, “We wanted to take this moment to remind our sneaker community that eBay has ZERO fees for buyers and ZERO fees for sellers $100+. Just sayin’.”

The program for now will only be eligible for “most popular sneaker styles and brands” on the market. However, by early 2021 eBay plans to extend this program to all sneaker purchases over 100 dollars.

Tyler, the Creator encourages his younger fans to vote

Grammy-award winning rapper/singer Tyler, the Creator uploaded an unexpected video on IGTV Monday afternoon urging his younger fans to vote in this year’s election.

“Please, please, if you are young, and your f******g back don’t hurt, go to them polls and cast a f*****g vote,” said Tyler.

Tyler, The Creator who’s real name is Tyler Okonma, has been known in the past for his immature and exaggerated character. While the rapper has voiced his political and social opinions before, never before has he directly asked his fans to do something of this nature. “I know I’m the last person y’all should ever take advice from,” Tyler admits, “but I’m reiterating what everyone else is saying.”

Okonma continues his message while addressing the current social climate: “Y’all was posting black squares and protesting from y’all phone, and rights this, and canceling everybody, n***a pull up. Y’all want a new DA? Pull up.”

According to the Washington Post, in 2016, roughly 43% of registered voters did not fill out a ballot. A year later, Pew Trusts released a study that revealed 62% of unregistered voters weren’t asked to register at all.

Even Okonma himself confesses 2020 will be his first year voting since he became eligible in 2009.

Okonma not voting in the 2016 election came as a shock to some fans who noted that his brand, Golf Wang, released a shirt the same year that featured a superimposed a Hitler-style mustache over President Donald Trump’s lip with the text “We f****d up” printed at the bottom.

However, in the video Okonma doesn’t mention either presidential candidate. Instead, he gives affirms his opinion on educational reforms and the school system. “The s**t that I actually give a f**k about is more art in schools and more music classes in schools and them changing the curriculum,” says Okonma.

Okonma follows a long line of other celebrities and influencers encouraging their fans to vote in this year’s upcoming election. Many of them sharing resources for how to get their fans registered.

What effects this will have on the 2020 election are currently unknown but will likely manifest within the coming months.

Cardi B’s newest single draws criticism from conservatives.

Cardi B - WAP feat. Megan Thee Stallion [Official Audio] - YouTubeCardi B’s newest single “WAP” featuring Megan Thee Stallion has drawn equal amounts of praise and controversy from its lyrical content and racy music video.

Cardi B made headlines this week for releasing her newest single since 2019. WAP which stands for “wet ass pussy” is her first collaboration with 2019 XXL Freshman, Megan Thee Stallion and since its release has remained at #1 in the US as of Aug 8. Its lyrics are suggestive and the music video for it features both rappers seductively dancing in animal print lingerie alongside other female celebrities and live animals.

To many, the song has become a female anthem.  According to Genius, the song exudes “A pervading feeling of female empowerment and sexual liberation.” In such a short time its garnered widespread praise from activists and music fans alike. However, despite many coming to the defense of the song’s raunchy lyrics and accompanying video, that doesn’t mean it has come without criticism.

James P. Bradley, a republican politician, tweeted: “Cardi B & Megan Thee Stallion are what happens when children are raised without God and without a strong father figure. Their new “song” The #WAP (which i heard accidentally) made me want to pour holy water in my ears and I feel sorry for future girls if this is their role model!”

In the same vein, conservative Political Commentator, Ben Shapiro, after reading through the song lyrics on his show, sarcastically said, “This is what feminists fought for. This is what the feminist movement was all about, and if you say anything differently it’s ’cause you’re a misogynist, see?”

The backlash from the single caused several to speak out in its defense including Cardi herself.

In a tweet particularly aimed at Shapiro, she said, “I can’t believe conservatives soo mad about WAP.”

A recent essay from Complex they described the importance of “WAP” saying, “Both Cardi and Megan are powerhouses of female sexuality, independence, and dominance. In a male-dominated genre that is often criticized for misogynistic wordplay toward women, the two rappers have never shied away from taking back the narrative of femininity in hip-hop.”

This is not the first time either rapper has come under criticism for their sexuality and character. Cardi B has been criticized before for her actions when she worked as a stripper and just last month Megan Thee Stallion voiced her distaste over people making fun of her recent issues with fellow artist Tory Lanez.

In a live stream before the release of the single Cardi said: “one thing when it comes to female rappers, people…. they drive you to the top and…. when you up there they wanna put you down.”

 

Trump Administration gives Microsoft 45 days to acquire TikTok

The Rush for TikTok Followers: Will You Be Among the Platform's ...The Trump Administration has given Microsoft 45 days to acquire the Chinese-owned video-sharing app TikTok despite Trump’s recent plans to ban the app, according to a recent blog post made by Microsoft.

It’s only been a few days since Trump recently said that he was planning on banning the App in the United States. While aboard the Air Force One he said, “As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States.” According to President Trump, the ban could have occurred as soon as Saturday.

Late last year, US Lawmakers voiced concerns over TikTok possibly posing a threat to national security due to the data it handles and tensions between the administration and China have only heightened over time.

Due to these developments, many believed the deal between Microsoft and TikTok was dismissed.

However, in a recent blog post, Microsoft confirmed they were “prepared to continue discussions to explore a purchase of TikTok in the United States” due to a recent conversation between Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and President Donald J. Trump had in private.

According to the post, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) will handle all subsequent negotiations made by Microsoft and the TikTok parent company, ByteDance. Microsoft vowed to “move quickly” and close the deal by Sept. 15.

In their closing statement, they wrote: “Microsoft appreciates the U.S. Government’s and President Trump’s personal involvement as it continues to develop strong security protections for the country. These discussions are preliminary and there can be no assurance that a transaction which involves Microsoft will proceed. We do not intend to provide further updates until there is a definitive outcome to our discussions.”

This isn’t the first time the CFIUS has ordered a company to divest. Earlier this year, Chinese gaming company Beijing Kunlun Tech Co Ltd sold, Grindr, a gay dating app, for $620 million to San Vicente Acquisition LLC as per the request of the CFIUS.

Whether this deal between the tech giant Microsoft and ByteDance will go the same way, however, is still unknown.

Recent developments in the UC college system look promising for minorities

New lawsuit suggests U of California has been considering race in ...The UC announced last week they hit a record-breaking number of Latino admissions to its nine undergraduate campuses for the upcoming school year.

At 36 percent, this is the highest it has ever been, topping last year by two percent. Now, according to UC, Chicanx/Latinx students now comprise the largest ethnic group of admitted freshmen.

“UC continues to see increased admissions of underrepresented students… The incoming class will be one of our most talented and diverse yet, and UC is proud to invite them to join us,” UC President Janet Napolitano said.

Last week, the Trump administration also decided to roll back their original plan to send foreign students back to their home countries if schools go online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The plan was met with criticism from universities like Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which both argued that the policy was created unlawfully.

If this plan was successful, however, it would have affected over 1 million international students currently enrolled in U.S. colleges. These international students who make up a decent portion of the student body were also responsible for contributing $45 billion to the US economy in 2018.

In a similar vein to their previous achievements, the University of California also elected its first black president since the institution’s inception in 1868.

Michael V. Drake, 68, is a distinguished member in the UC community who previously served as chancellor of UC Irvine for nine years, and as the systemwide vice president for health affairs for five.

On the topic of his election, Drake said, “Much has changed in the 15 years since I was given the privilege of becoming chancellor at UC Irvine, but not my absolute belief in this great University and its time-honored mission.”

It would seem Drake’s appointment has come at a very crucial time in the Unites States increasingly tense social climate. What these recent developments represent is a growing trend among many other institutions attempting to narrow the gap between less fortunate students and their privileged counterparts.

Doja Cat tested positive for COVID-19 after initially downplaying it

Doja Cat Tests Positive for COVID-19American singer and rapper Doja Cat revealed this week that she has tested positive for COVID-19 despite previous comments mocking the severity of the virus.

The news came out in an exclusive interview she conducted with Capital XTRA, during the interview she said, “I got COVID. Honestly, I don’t know how this happens…. and I don’t know how I got it but I got it.”

In the interview, she also revealed that has since recovered and no longer exemplifies any symptoms. “I’m OK now. It was a four-day symptom freak out but I’m fine now,” said Doja Cat.

The news was quite a shock to many, due to the fact that since the start of the pandemic the singer had previously downplayed the virus and ridiculed those who expressed concerns.

While on an Instagram Live Doja Cat said, “I’m gonna get corona and then I’m gonna get a Corona, cuz I don’t give a f**k about corona, b***h. It’s a flu!”

She later added, “”I’m not scared. Y’all are p*ssy, period. You just take some Mucinex and drink water and tea and sleep — that’s all you gotta do. Y’all are so scared of some damn corona.”

Today, the CDC reports that there have been over 4 million cases and more than 146 thousand deaths in the U.S. alone.

Doja Cat has been in the limelight a lot recently due to a previous controversy she had back in May. When an unreleased song she made that prominently featured the racial slur “dindu” surfaced on the internet.

The song stirred a lot of debate in her fan base as many saw the abundant use of the slur as offensive. She later apologized for the song calling it “an attempt to flip its meaning” but acknowledged it “was a bad decision to use the term” in her music.

Doja Cat has not made any public statements regarding her previous comments about COVID-19.

Remembering and Understanding John Lewis

john lewisJohn Lewis is considered one of the “Big Six” leaders of the Civil Rights movement that swept America during the 1960s. His passing was confirmed by Nancy Pelosi late on Friday night. This was following a seven-month-long battle he had with stage four pancreatic cancer. He was 80.

Born on February 21, 1940, into a family of sharecroppers, John Robert Lewis was the third child of ten living in rural Alabama.  He attended segregated schools as a boy and was often told by his parents not to challenge the inequities of the Jim Crow laws which had been set in place during that era. However, as he grew older so did his distaste for the unfairness racial segregation.

Lewis first heard Martin Luther King, Jr. on the radio in 1955 and closely followed Montgomery Bus Boycott that King began later that year. Lewis was deeply inspired by King’s actions and from then on vowed to act upon the change which he wanted to see.

In 1957, Lewis traveled to Nashville, Tennessee to attend American Baptist Theological Seminary. It was here where he learned about nonviolent protest and how to organize protests. He became involved in sit-ins at segregated lunch counters and was arrested during these demonstrations. Despite this Lewis stuck to his philosophy of nonviolence and became a strict adherent which he kept to for the rest of his life.

After doing civil work in Nashville and meeting with both Dr. King and Rosa Parks, Lewis became one of the original 13 Freedom Riders. Freedom Riders were a group of six whites and seven blacks, who in an effort to get southern states to enforce the laws that prohibited segregated public transportation, all rode buses from Washington, D.C., to New Orleans in an integrated fashion. In doing this Lewis and his fellow freedom riders were brutally beaten and arrested many times yet still consistently made it to freedom rides.

In 1963, after Charles McDew stepped down as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, Lewis was elected to take his place and as such helped plan one of the most important marches in American history: the March on Washington.

The March on Washington took place on Wednesday, August 28, 1963, and was meant to advocate for the civil and economic rights of African Americans. During this March is also where Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his iconic “I Have a Dream” speech. Alongside King was Lewis, who at only 23, was the youngest speaker at the event. In a powerful declaration, Lewis announced, “We all recognize the fact that if any radical social, political and economic changes are to take place in our society, the people, the masses, must bring them about.” The March on Washington is credited with helping to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which among other things, outlaws discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

20 years later in 1986, Lewis was elected to the House of Representatives, representing Georgia’s 5th District. Lewis was reelected 16 times only dropping below 70 percent of the vote once. Being one of the most respected in congress, Lewis advocated for health reform and education improvements. He also oversaw multiple renewals of the Voting Rights Act.

John Lewis is not dead, spokesperson says | 11alive.comIn the recent past, John Lewis was hailed by Pelosi as “a titan of the civil rights movement” by Pelosi, and out of respect, President Donald Trump ordered all flags to be flown at half-staff. A number of other people also voiced their grief in response to the passing of Lewis including  Former President Barack Obama, who just ten years prior awarded Lewis the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

On all fronts, Lewis is what every activist looking to make a change should aspire to be. Unwavering, unflinching and most important of all peaceful.

Details surrounding Megan Thee Stallion’s shooting becoming shady

torey and meg.PNGMegan Thee Stallion has spoken out again amidst a shooting that occurred Sunday morning that allegedly involves Canadian singer Tory Lanez.

On Wednesday night Megan Thee Stallion revealed she was “grateful to be alive” following a trip she made to the hospital that week over “gunshot wounds” she had suffered as a result of a “crime that was committed” against her. A press release made by the LAPD revealed that rapper Tory Lanez, whose real name is Daystar Peterson, was arrested that same night and that “One person was transported to the hospital and received medical treatment for a foot injury.”

Today, Megan took to twitter delivering some more thoughts about the incident. In the tweet, she slams those who took the situation disingenuously and went on to say she was “hurt and traumatized.”

Many other sources have since come out to reveal key details about what occurred that night. Page Six reported that a source had told them explicitly that Peterson had fired shots from within the vehicle both he and Megan were in.

Peterson was only charged with carrying a concealed weapon that night and he has not yet been named a suspect in the shooting.

Peterson posted $35,000 bail and was released from police custody on Thursday morning. He is scheduled to appear in court in October and has not made an official statement on the matter.