All posts by mayadawit

The New Faces of #BlackLivesMatter (Opinion)


Religious persecution is not a new issue. In fact, one could argue that this unthinkable act of hatred has a long and drawn out history both here in the U.S. and around the world. Whether it’s the Holocaust, the mass murder of Syrian Christians or the plight of this country’s true natives, millions of human beings have been killed around the world for how they choose to worship.

We saw another example of this recently growing form of hatred two days ago, when a video was released by ISIS militants that appeared to show about 30 Ethiopian Christians being killed in Libya because of their religion. This video came just two months after a similar one was released by what is believed to be the same group of militants, killing 21 Egyptian Christians on a beach in Libya.

ISIS Militants hold Ethiopian Christians captive in Libya. c/o


Continue reading The New Faces of #BlackLivesMatter (Opinion)

Janelle Monáe Is Not Here For Male Chauvinism


Twitter has always been the best platform to help connect everyday people with those they look up to. Whether it’s getting a reply from Nicki Minaj, a favorite from Oprah or even the all-coveted follow-back, Twitter breaks down the barrier that lies between any two people.

It’s also a great medium to sound off on your haters, and that’s just what singer and style queen Janelle Monáe did this past week.

Continue reading Janelle Monáe Is Not Here For Male Chauvinism

When Did Black Women Stop Being Beautiful? (Opinion)


Confession: I love Being Mary Jane. When the 90 minute pilot premiered on BET in the summer of 2013, I knew this show was something I needed and wanted to keep up with. Besides being one of the few times Gabrielle Union has played a character that wasn’t angry 95% of the time, the character of Mary Jane was what I sort of envisioned for my future as a journalist (without all the adultery.)

At her core, MJ is just a black woman trying to tell the stories that matter to her, whilst fighting the disease plaguing today’s news*. If you don’t watch the show, the first episode focused on a 2011 article written in Psychology Today by blogger/evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa titled “Why Are African-American Women Less Physically Attractive Than Other Women?

Courtesy of

Yeah, that’s what I said too. Continue reading When Did Black Women Stop Being Beautiful? (Opinion)

Parks and Recreation Says Goodbye to Producer Harris Wittels


On Tuesday night, we said goodbye to Leslie Knope, Ron Swanson and the rest of the gang from Pawnee. And while we settled in to watch the series finale of Parks and Recreation, the show’s cast and crew were saying goodbye to one of their own. Harris Wittels, one of the producers, writers and frequent guest star on the series, died on February 19th from a suspected overdose.

News of Wittels’ death quickly spread over social media and lead to an outpouring of condolences from his former co-workers. Parks and Recreation star Amy Poehler, who played Leslie Knope, received word of Wittels’ death during the Unite4: Humanity award ceremony honoring her and eight other celebrities for their charity work. During her acceptance speech, Poehler said, “Today, I lost a friend. I lost a dear, young man in my life who was struggling with addiction and died.” Continue reading Parks and Recreation Says Goodbye to Producer Harris Wittels

HTGAWM Reviews : “Mama’s Here Now”


For HTGAWM, class is now in session. Bear with me, this show has a lot of storylines.

Over the course of its first season, I think How To Get Away With Murder has done quite an excellent job of making a name for itself in the world of primetime television. I know that I tune in religiously every Thursday night with over 9 million other viewers and look forward to seeing whose ass Annalise will be kicking. The one fact that I find incredibly important to point out, however, is that this show is different from our other Thursday night favorite, Scandal. And this is because while this show does have some Shonda influence (she’s the Executive Producer,)  it’s style is very different from that of her pieces of masterpiece television because it is not her creation. That being said, let’s get into what happened last night.

Continue reading HTGAWM Reviews : “Mama’s Here Now”

Young Dancer Pays Homage to Missy Elliott


If your childhood was anything like mine, you spent most of your time recreating Britney Spears choreography, chatting with friends on AIM and wondering why Missy Elliott didn’t ask you to dance in her music videos (it was because I was a terrible dancer).

Well this past week, we were able to relieve our childhood glory when Alyson Stoner, the young girl featured in many music videos in the early 2000s including Missy’s “Gossip Folks,” “Work It,” and “I’m Really Hot,” released a tribute video paying homage to rap’s favorite MC. The video is about three minutes long and features Stoner and a group of child and adult dancers recreating some of the choreography she made popular over a decade ago.

Let me just say this video has already gotten over 11 million views, and about half of those are courtesy of yours truly. I’ve been slightly obsessed with Stoner’s career since I first saw her dance and the obsession has not died. I mean, look at that outfit! Look at those moves! LOOK AT THE PIGTAILS! Continue reading Young Dancer Pays Homage to Missy Elliott