Grace & Power: President Obama And First Lady Michelle Obama Cover ESSENCE’s October 2016 Issue
President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will soon be leaving the White House, as the president’s term nears its end.
ESSENCE is giving them a graceful send-off with the cover of its October 2016 issue – and the lovely couple is picture perfect. Inside, they talk their life in the White House, the state of the nation and the legacy they hope to leave behind.
“…I can unequivocally say that America is better off now than we were when we came into office, said President Obama. “By almost every economic measure, we’re better off But having said that, we still have a lot of work to do.”
While they hope that their initiatives like My Brother’s Keeper, Let’s Move, Let Girls Learn, will remain strong, the couple also plans to hold onto the memories that have been made during their eights years in DC.
“The memories that last ultimately aren’t the family memories,” President Obama added. “Some of my fondest memories of the White House are just being with the girls on a summer night and walking the dogs around the South Lawn, talking and listening to them, trying to get Bo to move because sometimes it’s hot.”
Mrs. Obama says she hopes that their visibility will continue to inspire Black boys and girls.
“I think when it comes to Black kids, it means something for them to have spent most of their life seeing the family in the White House look like them,” she explained. “It matters. All the future work that Barack talked about, I think over these last few years, we’ve kind of knocked the ceiling of limitation off the roofs of many young kids; imaginations of what’s possible for them. And as a mother, I wouldn’t underestimate how important that is, having that vision that you can really do anything—not because somebody told you, but because you’ve seen and experienced it. I think that will be a lasting impact on our kids.”
To get a look at ESSENCE’s 12-page salute to the first couple’s finest moments, pick up a copy of the October special collector’s issue, on newsstands Friday, September 9!
Kim Zolciak's Husband, Kroy Biermann, got Cut From Buffalo Bills
Kim Zolciak’s husband, Kroy Biermann, was cut from the Buffalo Bills just weeks after he signed with the team, BuffaloBills.com confirmed Friday, September 2.
According to the website, the team’s head coach, Rex Ryan, had to cut the roster of players down from 75 to 53. Biermann, 30, was among the 22 men asked to leave.
As previously reported, the NFL star — who had previously played with the Atlanta Falcons for eight seasons — signed a contract with the Buffalo Bills Tuesday, August 16. The team confirmed his new position as an outside linebacker via Twitter.
“We've officially signed LB Kroy Biermann,” the sports organization wrote from its official Twitter account at the time. “Welcome @biermann71!”
Likely disappointed by the cut, the “Google Me” songstress will surely enjoy having him home. Back in May, she took to Instagram to express how much Biermann means to her.
"6 years ago today I met the LOVE of my LIFE!" she shared. "My heart, my best friend, my babies daddy! I love you with all I have @kroybiermann and I'm so glad you chose me..."
Zolciak and Biermann share sons KJ, 5, Kash, 4, and 2-year-old twins Kane and Kaia. The Kashmere Kollections founder is also the mom of Brielle, 19, and Ariana, 14, from a previous relationship. Biermann officially adopted the teens in July 2013.
Showrunner on Lee Daniels Fox Music Drama 'Star' Exits
There's yet another change at the top of one of the 2016-17 freshman shows.
Charles Murray, the showrunner on Fox's Lee Daniels- and Tom Donaghy-created midseason drama Star, has departed, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.
As first reported Wednesday by TV Line, a search is underway for a replacement to join Daniels and existing co-showrunner Donaghy. Sources say the split was amicable after Murray (Sons of Anarchy) had a different vision for Star than Daniels and Donaghy. A replacement is expected to be announced shortly.
Daniels co-wrote the pilot alongside Donaghy for the Atlanta-set drama that revolves around three girls (newcomers Jude Demorest, Ryan Destiny and Brittany O'Grady, discovered after a nationwide casting call) who come together to form a band.
Star, set to bow when Empire goes on its holiday hiatus, details the trio's rise to the top in a challenging business. While Empire is told from the point of view of music executives, Star will be told from the perspective of the artist. Benjamin Bratt and Queen Latifah headline the series.
Star becomes the latest freshman series in the 2016-17 class to see a showrunner change. NBC's DC Comics comedy Powerless saw creator Ben Queen exit; and in April, showrunner Eli Jorne exited Fox's live-action/animated hybrid comedy Son of Zorn, with insiders also attributing his departure to creative differences.
The 2016-17 broadcast season is starting to mirror last season, in which multiple showrunners departed and network series featured a startling number of recastings in what one insider described as the season of "bad marriages" as networks continue to face the pressure of "too much TV."
Usher Receives Star on Hollywood Walk of Fame!!
Usher celebrated one of entertainment’s crowing achievements on Wednesday (Sept. 7). The “No Limit” singer finally received his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
While accepting the landmark honor, Usher reflected on his journey in the industry.
“I’m here because I haven’t given up and I have even more to tell,” he said. “It’s a story that started many, many, many years ago that leads to this moment. It’s not just what you do while you’re here. It’s the evidence of what you’ve done and what you leave on the walls, on the ground, and the hearts of all the people who are passionately connected to what you put out in the world.”
He also took time to thank his loved ones for their ongoing support. “I don’t just celebrate this moment by myself,” he said. “I celebrate it with those people who invested in me, those people who loved me in my hard times.”
While Usher’s family was beside him, so were some of his famous friends, including Stevie Wonder, Kelly Rowland, Miguel, and will.i.am. Others, like BJ the Chicago Kid and Maxwell, shared their congrats on social media.
Kanye West Confirms Joint Album with Drake
It’s official. Kanye West and Drake are definitely recording an album together.
Mr. West confirmed the rumors during an interview with Vogue. “We’re just working on music, working on a bunch of music together, just having fun going into the studio,” he explained. “We’re working on an album, so there’s some exciting things coming up soon.”
The 6 God and the Louis Vuitton Don have teased the album onstage at OVO Fest and with a Los Angeles billboard.
For now, however, Yeezy and Drizzy are touring separately. Drake is on the “Summer Sixteen Tour” with Future, while Kanye is headlining his “Saint Pablo” trek.
Speaking of the “Saint Pablo Tour,” Yeezus is happy with how his suspended platform stage is working out.
“I feel really excited about the way the kids feel,” he said. “I wanted to come up with something that allowed me to be closer to the people and made it so there wasn’t a bad seat in the house, as best as we could try to do that.”
Today, West is set to reveal Yeezy Season 4 at New York Fashion Week. He also plans to design clothing for children and finalize his joint album with Drake, which currently has no release date.
Britney Spears Blindsided by Beyonce’s performance at The VMA’s
Last week Beyonce gave a surprise performance at the MTV Video Music awards and apparently no-one was more surprised than Britney Spears who had been lead to believe she was the headliner...
From Radar Online
“Britney was legitimately upset about the way that the situation was handled at the VMAs. She felt like she was flat-out lied to by the producers. Britney thought that she was the headliner and could not believe how they screwed her over...Everyone in Britney’s camp was really quite blindsided by Beyonce’s performance. Hardly anyone knew that Beyonce was going to be the main event. Britney is saying she will never do the VMAs again.”
Kanye West Presents Yeezy Season 4 At New York Fashion Week
Kanye West kicked off New York Fashion Week, presenting his Yeezy Season 4 at the Smallpox Hospital on Roosevelt Island in Manhattan.
In addition to Teyana Taylor and Chanel Iman being among the models that appeared in the show, there was a performance by Vanessa Beecroft.
Yeezy had the support of his wife, Kim Kardashian, her sisters, Kylie and Kendall Jenner, and Tyga who watched on as the models strutted the catwalk.
2 Chainz, Pharrell, Desiigner, Fabolous, Russell Westbrook and Pusha T were also spotted at the event.
Ye chatted with VOGUE prior to the presentation, to talk Season 4, explaining that he wants “to make pieces that can be timeless.”
“Pieces that you can pick up out of a vintage store in 20 years and say, ‘Wow, I’m happy I have this,’” he said. “I think it’s about embracing where me and my family live, where my kids are growing up, embracing the attitude and style of the Valley.”
The “Fade” also shared that invisibility is what he’d always name when asked which superpower he would choose. He says that he put his longing for invisibility into the clothing.
As the show came to a close, Kanye thanked his guests with a final walk-by, before making an exit.
Ryan Lochte Is Suspended For 10 Months Over His Behavior At Rio's Olympics
Ryan Lochte will serve a 10-month suspension from domestic and international swim competitions, the U.S. Olympic Committee and USA Swimming announced Thursday.
Ray Tamarra/GC Images
Weeks after he left Rio's 2016 Summer Olympics under a cloud, U.S. swimming star Ryan Lochte is being punished for his behavior in Brazil, which ranged from an altercation at a gas station to making claims that he was robbed — claims that were later deemed to be false.
On Thursday, the United States Olympic Committee and USA Swimming imposed a 10-month suspension on Lochte, banning him from domestic and international national swim team competitions through June 30, 2017. This means Lochte, 32, won't be able to compete in the 2017 national championships — and, by extension, he'll be ineligible for the 2017 FINA World Championships.
Announcing the punishment for Lochte and three other swimmers, USOC CEO Scott Blackmun said, "The behavior of these athletes was not acceptable. It unfairly maligned our hosts and diverted attention away from the historic achievements of Team USA."
The three other U.S. swimmers who were with Lochte that night — Gunnar Bentz, 20; Jack Conger, 21; and James Feigen, 26 — were hit with four-month suspensions and other punishments.
None of the four swimmers will receive stipends from USA Swimming or the USOC during their suspensions; they will also be left out of Team USA's visit to the White House.
And in Lochte's case, he forfeits all USOC and USA Swimming funds that were triggered by the gold medal he won at the 2016 Olympics. It's been reported that the USOC pays a $25,000 bonus to gold medalists.
"Each of the athletes has accepted responsibility for his actions and accepted the appropriate sanctions," Blackmun said. He added, "We look forward to focusing our energy on the Paralympic Games and the incredible men and women representing our country in Rio."
He deserves more…But GOOD!
Airbnb Reveals New Plan To Eliminate Racial Discrimination Among Its Hosts
*Home-sharing service Airbnb, which has been under fire for instances of racism and discrimination exhibited by some hosts, today revealed several changes to its platform and company policies in an effort to address the problem.
Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky sent the new directives in an email to hosts and guests this morning, according to Tech Crunch. It includes guaranteeing short-term bookings for people who have been discriminated against, deemphasizing the use of user photos, blocking out availability if a host claims a space is taken when it really isn’t and working to increase the number of Instant Book listings, which don’t require hosts to approve specific guests, to one million by the beginning of 2017.
“Discrimination is the opposite of belonging, and its existence on our platform jeopardizes this core mission,” Chesky wrote in the email. “Bias and discrimination have no place on Airbnb, and we have zero tolerance for them. Unfortunately, we have been slow to address these problems, and for this I am sorry. I take responsibility for any pain or frustration this has caused members of our community. We will not only make this right; we will work to set an example that other companies can follow.”
As previously reported, a Harvard study last year showed that renters with names considered to “sound black” were less likely to receive a booking through the site. Later that month, the Congressional Black Caucus urged Airbnb to take further action in addressing the issues of racism and discrimination on the company’s platform, citing how Title II of 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination in places like hotels and motels on the basis of race, color, religion or national origin.
Then, in June, an Airbnb host in North Carolina canceled a booking on a black person and sent her a slew of racist insults. Shortly after that incident, Chesky said that racism is not allowed on the platform and Airbnb permanently banned the host.
Today, Laura Murphy, former head of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Washington D.C. office, laid out Airbnb’s plan to combat instances of racism and discrimination on the platform. Airbnb has been working with Murphy since June to ensure that the company is doing everything it can to fight racism.
Product and policy changes to eradicate racist behavior
In the 32-page document, Murphy details Airbnb’s commitment and plan to implement product and policy changes across eight areas.
For one, starting Nov. 1, 2016, anyone who uses Airbnb will have to agree to a community commitment that entails treating fellow members with respect and without judgment and bias. Airbnb’s new non-discrimination policy, developed under the guidance of former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who joined Airbnb in July, prohibits content that promotes things like racism and bigotry.
As part of the community commitment, Airbnb will build and release a feature by the first half of next year to address the instances of someone requesting a booking that was listed as vacant but then getting informed that it wasn’t available. Here’s a nugget from the report:
In some cases, it appears that these listings were then made available for the same trip to guests of a different race. Going forward, Airbnb will develop a feature to help prevent this from happening. If a host rejects a guest by stating that their space is not available, Airbnb will automatically block the calendar for subsequent reservation requests for that same trip.
Airbnb has also formed a team of engineers, data scientists, researchers and designers whose full-time jobs are to promote diversity and eradicate racism and bias from the Airbnb platform. One of the team’s first tasks will be experimenting with “reducing the prominence of guest photos in the booking process and enhancing other parts of host and guests profiles with objective information.”
In the event that someone is discriminated against, Airbnb is committed to ensuring that the person finds a place to stay, even if it’s not on Airbnb. For anyone who reported discrimination prior to today, Chesky said that Airbnb will help them book their next trip.
Other changes include the addition of new flagging tools so that people can quickly report discrimination or hate speech. That tool will be expanded and enhanced by January 2017. Airbnb will also offer unconscious bias training for hosts. Once hosts complete the training, Airbnb will highlight them on the platform.
The changes were developed in partnership with racial justice group Color of Change, Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, the Congressional Black Caucus, the NAACP and others.
Companywide, Airbnb is 46.3 percent female, 63 percent white, 7.1 percent Latino/a and 2.9 percent black in the U.S., according to its 2015 diversity report. Today, Airbnb has set a goal to increase the percentage of employees from underrepresented groups from 9.64% to 11% by the end of 2017.
In order to try to achieve that, Airbnb says it will focus more of its recruiting efforts on people from Historically Black Colleges and Universities, as well as from colleges with large Latino populations. Airbnb will also bring on a manager for supplier diversity and encourage more underrepresented minorities to list spaces on Airbnb.
Most importantly, Airbnb will implement a diversity rule to mandate that all senior-level positions include female applicants and applicants from underrepresented backgrounds.
Diddy Tops Forbes’ Cash Kings List, Jay Z & Dr. Dre Nab The Second And Third Spots
Diddy is at number one on the Cash Kings list, as Forbes rolls out its annual report. The music mogul, currently on tour with his Bad Boy family, raked in $62 million this past year with sales from his lucrative Ciroc vodka deal and other non-musical ventures.
Next in line is Jay Z with earnings of $53.3 million. Although he didn’t release a new album or play many shows over the past 12 months, he pulled in cash from his Roc Nation entertainment company, Armand de Brignac champagne, D’Ussé cognac and other ventures.
Dr. Dre lands at number three with a $41 million. Two years after scoring the highest single-year payday in history for any living celebrity ($620 million), mostly from Apple’s $3 billion Beats buyout – he continues to build his bank account from the deal, and also earned from the Straight Outta Compton biopic.
Drake and Wiz Khalifa round out the top five. Drizzy claiming the No. 4 spot with earnings of $38.5 million – with his new album Views contributing to that sum, as well as live shows and checks from Apple, Sprite and Nike and he may have more on the way with his new Virginia Black whiskey. Wiz brought in $24 million to take his seat at No. 5 rank. 70 shows and a six-figure nightly average gross during the scoring period assisted with his earnings.
Get a look into who else nabbed a spot, like A$AP Rocky, DJ Khaled and Swizz Beatz, at Forbes.com.
Rihanna Unveils Her New Fenty x Rihanna PUMA Collection For The Masses
Rihanna unveiled her Fenty x Rihanna collection this week, from Bergdorf to Bloomingdales to pop-up shops. Go inside to see the pop princess floss her new PUMA threads she designed with the brand....
She's been rocking her own threads since officially debuting them at New York Fashion Week back in February. Now, as NYFW kicks off again, the threads are available for the masses.
RiRi made her way to Bergdorf Goodman in New York on Tuesday rocking her self-designed PUMA collection -- which is the epitome of street style meets athleisure -- and posed it up with the mannequins also rocking her new PUMA designs.
Rihanna drew inspiration from contemporary Japanese street culture and tradition for her debut collection with the athletic brand. Mixing cultural influences with gothic overtones and exaggerated volumes and proportions, the fashion lover (and recent Vanguard Award recipient) challenged the traditional male and female silhouettes and blurred the lines between genders like she often loves to do.
Thigh high boots, crop top baseball tops, double slit track pants, and this super long weavery -- it's all giving us Aaliyah vibes.
Here are the supposed prices of her footwear:
The line is available in all of the SIX: 02 stores, including the L.A. shop on Melrose:
On Wednesday, the collection also launched at Bloomingdales in New York
Damon Wayans, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kerry Washington Added As Emmy Presenters
Chris Rock, “Scandal” lead Kerry Washington, “Black-ish” standout Tracee Ellis Ross and “Orange is the New Black” star Laverne Cox were among the second batch of Emmy presenters announced on Wednesday.
The Jimmy Kimmel-hosted awards ceremony will air Sept. 18 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on ABC from Los Angeles’ Microsoft Theater.
Other newly-announced presenters include Keri Russell of “The Americans,” “Transparent” star Jeffrey Tambor and “Game of Thrones” star Kit Harington, as well as stars of new shows this fall: Matt LeBlanc of CBS’ “Man With a Plan,” Joel McHale of CBS’ “The Great Outdoors,” Mandy Moore of NBC’s “This Is Us” and Damon Wayans of Fox’s “Lethal Weapon” reboot.
“Superstore” star America Ferrera and “Fresh Off the Boat” actress Constance Wu also will present.
The latest batch of presenters joins previously announced stars Aziz Ansari, Taraji P. Henson, Anthony Anderson, James Corden and Larry David.
#EGGPLANT NATION! Meet Aden!
Meet Aden! With beard and without beard! To see more without you can GO HERE TO SEE THE PICS! And remember they’re NSWF!
DISCLAIMER: WE DO NOT OWN any images posted on this blog. All images are found online or submitted.
AND FINALLY FROM “THE CRAZY PEOPLE SHOPPING AT WALMART” FILES
‘Teeny Bopper Shopper’
Pap Pap needs to stop stealing his granddaughter’s jorts
HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND EVERYBODY!!!!!!!!