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June 5, 2024 24 mins

Today's midweek memo focuses on updates on entertainment news stories making headlines this week.  

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Speaker 1 (00:00):
A man who needs no introduction. The Black Information Network
is committed to bringing you up to the date news
stories that are relevant, informative, and inspiring. And while news
stories are always being updated and others are breaking, we
understand that you need to be in the know all
week long. Welcome to your midweek memo on the Black

Information Network Daily Podcast with me your host Rams's job.
All right, fair warning, this episode is going to have
a lot in the way of entertainment news and for
folks who are particularly troubled by stories and articles that

have perhaps an aggressive sexual tone, I just want to
give you fair warning. We're going to be covering some
potent topics today. First up from TMZ, The Dream is
facing a number of troubling allegations, including sexual battery, abuse,
trafficking in a new lawsuit from a woman who claims
she was his former protege. The artist, who is best

known for writing music for Beyonce, Rihanna, and Mariah Carey,
not to mention his own music, is being sued by
Chanaz Mangro, who claims the producer lured her into a
relationship with Paul's promises of launching her singing career, but
ended up, subjecting her to violent sexual acts and vicious
psychological torture. She alleges that she was locked in a

dark room where the Dream violently had sex with her,
leaving her naked and alone for hours on end before
returning for another encounter. The aspiring singer goes on to
claim that she was quote frequently strangled by the Dream
during their sexual encounters, almost losing consciousness on a number
of occasions. She also claims Dream recorded some of these

sexual acts with her, allegedly using the footage as a
means to keep her silent. As I mentioned, we have
a couple of story or is like this day and yeah,
this is another trouble, troubling accusation. Obviously, you know, our

process is to wait until we hear all sides. At present,
we don't have anything from the Dream or his people,
uh confirming or denying these allegations, but the lawsuit exists,
and I think the the more troubling element to me

is that these stories and how they affect these these men,
these these high profile men, these individuals who are living
now in fear of what could come out. I think

it has really altered a lot of the conversations around
relationships and boundaries and sexuality, which is a good thing,
Absolutely is a good thing. It's a fantastic thing. But
in redrawing those lines, I think they were going to
have a fundamentally different approach to intimacy moving forward. I

was reading something recently that suggested that a big part
of why people are less sexual younger people are less
sexual than they were ten years ago, twenty years ago,
is because of the fear associated with maybe getting it wrong.

And I'll speak for myself. I learned a lot during
the Me Too movement, where I lived my whole life
thinking that, you know, the things that I was doing
and saying, and how I was honoring my sisters I
shared this planet with. I thought all those things were
very noble. You know. I had it in my heart
to be a very kind person, and I thought that

I always was. And then during that movement, I realized
that there were deeper, deeper levels of kindness, There were
deeper levels of empathy and understanding, and there were blind spots. Now,
I am not a person that has any unusual proclivities
in that arena, nor am I a violent person. However,

I realized that I had kept company with a lot
of people who didn't even know as much as I did,
And so if I'm learning, then those other people would
have had a lot more ground to cover in order
to be in compliance with what the Me Too movement
was suggesting was more appropriate. In other words, men had

a lot of growing up to do in a very
short amount of time. And again that's all well and
go good, But I'm not sure that that has happened
the way that everyone intended, myself included, because obviously I
was a big supporter of the Me Too movement. Rather,

I think what has happened is at least surrounding the
conversations that I've been exposed to and you know, the
the articles I've been reading, you know, with respect to
this subject, I think that what's happened is, instead of
men growing up to meet the moment, it has caused
a lot of men to become afraid and fearful of approaching,

of engaging a flirting, of you know, any of these things.
And maybe that's okay, But the result of that is
now we have a lot more in the way of
conversations in the social media space with women saying what
am I going to do to find love? And find romance.
You know, men are not interested in pursuing X, Y

and Z with me, and so we've kind of ended
up creating a fearful romantic dating space. And that's not
to say it's not it wasn't well intentioned. Again, if
these people the dream you know and all the other
names that you know, if these are actual predators, then

these are actually violent people. You know, we all saw
the video of Diddy and Cassie. Then obviously they should
be held accountable and everyone should learn lessons from those moments.
But my hope is that all these accusations end up
being well founded, so that we can separate the truth
from you know, the cash grabs, and and that we

don't end up entirely redefining what what romantic encounters should
look like, not for the sake of men, but for
the sake of all of us, because you know, what
really prompted this is a lot of the conversations that

again I've been exposed to people in my own family,
women who discuss how difficult dating is these days, and
knowing that the other side of that is perhaps a
significant number of men who are literally afraid to move
in that direction because you know, if you get it right,

sure you might be able to be happy. But if
you get it wrong, I mean you could go to prison.
You don't even have to get it wrong. Someone can
just say something and if enough people believe them, it
could ruin your life. And the one thing that I
don't love, and I'm sure none of us love it
is the newer, more pronounced fear culture surrounding all of

these things. But in terms of this story, we're going
to have to wait and see how this flesh is out.
But at least now you're aware of what's going on
in his world. Next up, also from TMZ, Michael Richards.
You may know him as Kramer from the show Seinfeld,
but yeah, Michael Richards is making a comeback of sorts,

releasing a new book and in the same breath reflecting
on his inward rant, saying he's a better person. Nearly
twenty years later, the ex Seinfeld star just released a
memoir called Entrances and Exits, and he's doing the media
rounds right now. Popping up on today Tuesday or a
chat with Hoda Kobe, who addressed the elephant in the room,

namely his infamous meltdown from two thousand and six. One
thing Richards says is that he has less anger in
him now, although he acknowledged he's still angry, but just
less so he's also had time to examine himself and
understand what set him off that night. By the same token,
Richards says he's forgiven himself. Hoda also ask if he's

made amends and apologized something he's already done in the past,
and Mike says yes, he feels he's done enough to
move past it and resurface. And of course, his Seinfeld
colleague Jerry Seinfeld, has been in his corner pretty much
the entire time, and he even wrote the forward to
Richards's book. So you know, long time listeners of this

show know that I work in the Allyship space. I
sincerely believe that people deserve to be able to come
back from mistakes that they've made. I believe that to

err is human, to forgive divine. I believe no one
is perfect, not the least of which is me. I
believe that we're all on our journey, and that by
writing people off because of a mistake they made, we
ultimately fortify the opposition, building the numbers in that army
that we have to then fight for equity, for progressive

ideas and political strategies, for you know, a more balanced society.
The last thing we need to do is write people
off if they've made a mistake and they sincerely, genuinely
want to make amends. And you know, now that I've
said that out loud, I will still stand by that.

I do stand by that, But I will say in
the same breath that when I first read this, I
had a tough time with this one. I remember when
he first went on that rant talking about you know,
I effectually what he was communicating to the audience member
that night back in two thousand and six was that,

in words, need to respect the white man. And that's
some deep seated old school racism that he was speeling
on that stage, and it was deeply upsetting. And I
remember talking about that on the radio, and then this
guy disappeared, and I figured we're all better for it,

because ever since then, you know, I watched the Seinfeld
TV show, watched every episode. You know, these people that
bring these characters to life. You think that these people
are decent folks. You laugh with them, you get to
know them through the television. You kind of bond with them.
You know, when you watch a whole series in a

matter of a couple of months, you feel pretty connected.
You had a moment in time with some people you
thought were real cool, and then to find out that
the real people behind those characters are deeply hateful folks.
That's a very troubling, very upsetting sort of thing. And
when I look at this man, I don't see Michael Richards.

Nobody sees Michael Richard even know his name. I see
Kramer the same as everyone else. And so you know,
those lines are very blurred and for a long time.
And still now I'm not going to pretend like I'm
not deeply hurt and upset by this. But as I
mentioned just now, I can't say what I just said

and then single this man out, having made, in my view,
based on my understanding, one mistake one night, going silent
for twenty years. He says he's done the reflection. He
says he's forgiven himself. For what that's worth. I mean,
that's not nothing. Because people do have to forgive themselves.

They can't apologize, and if they never get forgiveness from
the people they've offended, it's not up to them. To
decide whether or not they deserve that forgiveness or should
get it. It's up to us who were offended. But
I don't think he should go and jump off a building.
He's still a human being. I suppose he still deserves

the capacity to come back from a mistake that he's made.
I'm sure that if I was in his position, I
would want the same thing. So with that in mind,
I wish him well. I'm going to I'm not going
to buy his book. You know, it's just not for me.

I just I don't need to go to that dark
place because in my mind, he's associated with that night
more prominently than he's associated with that lovable character from
the TV show. So this might be the last I
ever hear of this guy. But you know, if he's
trying to move past that, and he's saying he's remorseful

and he did fair enough, he took nearly twenty years
out of the spotlight, then yeah, wish him well. Join
us for the National Urban League Conference in New Orleans
July twenty fourth through the twenty seventh at High ad Regency,
New Orleans. Don't miss out. Register today at Annuelconference dot org.

This is your midweek memo on the Black Information Network
Daily podcast with me your host ramses Jah, all right,
next up, Former President Donald Trump has suggested that the
Supreme Court intervene in his New York hush money case
ahead of his sentencing next month. The Hill reports, by

the way, this is from the Black Information Network. All Right.
In a post on Truth Social, Trump called his opponents fascists,
that's funny, and complain that his sentencing was scheduled just
ahead of the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, where he is,
excuse me, set to formally become the GOP presidential nominee. Quote.

The sentencing for not having done anything wrong will be
conveniently for the fascists four days before the Republican National
Convention unquote, the former president said. In part on True
Social Trump also took aim at Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg,
who brought the charges against him in the hush money case,
and Judge Juan merchand who ever saw his trial, saying

they shouldn't have had a hand in quote a decision
which will determine the future of our nation unquote. There's
another quote from him, a radical left Soros backed da
who ran on a platform of I will get Trump
reporting to an acting local judge appointed by the Democrats,
who is highly conflicted, will make a decision which will

determine the future of our nation. End quote. Again, this
is what Trump wrote on True Social It goes on
to say, quote the United States Supreme Court must decide.
That's in all caps. Ah. Well, the other day Q

and I were talking about this, this case, and we
were offering kind of our initial thoughts. We had not
yet had a chance to really piece together all of
the legal paths forward that Trump could take or that

this could take. And since then we've learned a bit more.
First thing is that there is a critical process to
things like this, and the Supreme Court does not come
next in that critical process. And when the Supreme Court

is finally up to bat, they're only able to determine
whether or not there were errors in the trial. Now,
I'm not a lawyer, so don't hold me to this.
I'm like again, effectual communicating the path forward if any
as I understand it. So the Supreme Court, this is

almost like wishful thinking from Donald Trump. The fact is
that he's pointing the finger at everyone but himself. Everyone
is on the right. He's pointing the finger at everyone
but Donald Trump. Everything has to be corrupt, Everything has
to be And this goes all the way back to

twenty sixteen and much further, of course, but twenty sixteen
was when we were really able to see it on
full display. If I win, it's because the people love me,
and if I lose, it's because something corrupt has taken place.
And this is you know, the Maga Maga Handbook, Class

one oh one. And the reason why Donald Trump is
appealing to the Supreme Court is because he has stacked
the Supreme Court in his favor. And I know full
well that that was intentional, which is why I know

full well another vote for Donald Trump, putting him back
into the White House, allowing him to enact Project twenty
twenty five. If you're not familiar, please look that up.
Will create a framework, a stable political framework for this
country that privileges the privileged and costs those of us

who have been in pursuit of a more equitable society dearly.
And that's a framework that will be very stable and
very damaging for those of us in pursuit of an
equitable society. It will be very hard to revert. And

it's all written there Project twenty twenty five. It's all documented.
The plan is there, and Trump has been kind of
moving in that direction. They got Roe v. Wade, they
got the Supreme Court. Those justices will be there for life.
They make the rules that they hold themselves accountable to,
and there's no enforcement outside of that. So Donald Trump

conceivably could appeal everything up to the Supreme Court. Now, granted,
the Supreme Court's powers are limited when you're dealing with
state charges, but when you're dealing with federal charges and
reinterpreting federal laws and the Constitution, et cetera. If you
want to remake this country in the image of an
old school conservative, Christian, white male, and you got a

Supreme Court that feels like that's a good idea and
they espouse the values of that philosophy over the values
upon which this country was founded, then we're in trouble.

And Donald Trump knows this, and this is why Donald
Trump keeps knocking on that Supreme Court door. But again,
fortunately just doesn't work that way. Got a couple steps
before he gets there, And I don't know that this
hush money trial is going to be as the sentencing
is going to be as problematic as Donald Trump is

making it out to be. I think he's playing it
up because he can. You know, he's raising money off
of it because he can. But in the event that
Donald Trump does see jail time, obviously I would love that,
But that is it's not the most likely scenario, and
so this whole Supreme Court thing is probably a mood

point anyway, all right, Finally, brace yourself. This from TMZ,
Kanye West's ex executive slash personal assistant, claims he gave
her the boot after sending her vile sexual texts and videos.
Kanye hired Lauren Pishoda Forgive Me in July twenty twenty

one after meeting her when he was putting together his
fashion line. A year later, she says he came to
her and wanted her to be quote godlike and asked
her to delete her OnlyFans account and promised to pay
her a million dollars a year if she did so.
She says she agreed. According to the lawsuit, there was
a slew of text messages and sexual videos and photos

that were sent to her, including at least two videos
of Kanye having sex with a model. Prashota says in
October of twenty twenty two, she was fired, but claims
he offered her a three million dollar severance, which she accepted.
She claims he never paid for breach of contract, sexual harassment,
wrongful termination, and hostile work environment. A legal representative for

YEA telled TMZ quote, in response to these baseless allegations,
ye will be filing a lawsuit against miss Pashoda, who
actively pursued him sexually to chorus employment and other material benefits,
then engaged in blackmail and exhortion when her advances were rejected. Quote.
So again, just a little bit more of kind of

how we started. It's just a very troubling season that
we're in. Again. If Kanye was at fault, if this
former assistant was at fault, who's to say. But these
stories themselves are contributing to a I believe it, a

culture of fear of surrounding intimacy. And you know, again,
maybe that's for the better. Maybe when it works, it
will work very well, and maybe it eliminates some of
the more problematic issues that we have to deal with

in this society with respect to you know, relationships. But
I think overall, you can make an argument that this
is leading to less relationships overall, and so I wonder
if they're I couldn't tell you what we need to

be honest with you, it's just deeply disturbing. Lawsuits are
are scary, obviously, you know sexual harassment. Sexual abuse is
very scary. Any type of physical abuse is very scary.
Mental abuse is very scary. And all of us are

left to try to put together the pieces of some
form of happiness and companionship, knowing that the consequences of
getting it wrong are perhaps more severe than they've ever been.
So right now, this is the status of this one.
And obviously we'll continue watching us to see if there
are any new developments, but for now we'll just leave

that one right here. This has been a production of
the Black Information Network. Today's show is produced by Chris Thompson.
Have some thoughts you'd like to share, use the red
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be sure to hit subscribe and download all of our episodes.
I am your host, Ramse's Jaw on all social media
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our voice from our perspective right here on the Black
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