DNA vs No DNA: OJ Case Compared to the Exonerated 5

Over the past two weeks, I finished watching When They See Us and The People vs. O.J on Netflix. I watched part 1 of When They See Us and took a week break because, well, it’s sad. In that week, I watched The OJ series and I know I’m late on it but it was really shocking how much evidence they had and he was proven innocent.

All The Evidence In The World and No Conviction

OJ was known to be abusive to his ex-wife Nicole Brown, according to police calls ad documents. He was also known as being a charming professional football player. He wasn’t caught at the scene of the crime, but his blood was there. A glove was found at the scene at the crime, but it didn’t fit his hand. When he got the call about Nicole being dead, he didn’t ask how she died. OJ was on a whole speed chase with his friend Aj Cowlings driving him because he was threatening to kill himself. Why would he threaten to kill himself if he didn’t kill Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman? There were too many red flags. Of course Black people wanted him to be innocent because there have been several instances where black people were wrongfully convicted and it was probably time for a black person to get away with something. An instance when black people were wrongfully convicted were the Central Park 5, also known as the Exonerated 5, also known as Korey Wise, Yusef Salaam, Antron McCray, Raymond Santana, and Kevin Richardson.

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The story about the exonerated 5 is this; five young boys [Korey Wise, Yusef Salaam, Antron McCray, Raymond Santana, and Kevin Richardson] were accused of raping a white woman jogging in Central Park on April 19, 1989. They were coerced into admitting to the crime so they would get less time. No DNA placed them at the scene of crime. Yes, they were in the park around the time of the incident but they were on a totally different side. Some fight broke out at the park and as some of them were trying to leave, they got picked up by the police. The next day, the police picked up the others and one in particular, Korey, came along with his friend Yusef just so he wouldn’t be alone.

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The police accused these young boys because they were black and they so happened to be at the park at the wrong time. They manipulated them so bad they made Korey, Yusef, Kevin, Antron and Raymond make up stories and pin stories against each other just so they could leave the police station. Some of the boys were questioned without a parent present. This was a sad story to watch because the boys were so young and didn’t know how corrupt the system was. Between the 5 of them, they spent between 6 years to 13 years behind bars. Even though the real rapist admitted to the crime, the men had already did their time. Korey was still doing time when Matias Reyes admitted to the crime and he was even in prison with him.

The exonerated 5 sued the City of New York and got a large settlement, but no amount of money could give these men back the time they spend in prison and the time they lost. They will forever be mentally scarred from this traumatic life event.

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My Analysis

It’s crazy how the system doesn’t properly serve justice but it’s a reality. In New York, Korey, Yusef, Antron, Kevin and Raymond were young boys, kids in a sense and they were 100% innocent but the way Linda Fairstein saw it, they were black, young and guilty. Innocent kids were forced into a juvenile detention and even prison all over the rape of a woman (in which they didn’t do). The prosecution placed judgement on them and wanted to so desperately solve this case, even if it meant wrongfully convicting someone. Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, during their sentence, O.J is found not guilty of murdering Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman. As I stated above, black people have been wrongfully convicted for years and it was time for a black person to get away with something but murder tho? With plain site DNA? What if some of jurors (the many that were selected) knew that OJ was guilty and they paid attention to the Central Park 5 case that happened in ’89 and figured “Those boys were innocent, OJ isn’t but we’re gonna vote not guilty anyway.” It’s sounds crazy but it’s a thought. The justice system has still come a ways, but they have a long way to go, especially with police brutality and them being proven innocent.

What are your thoughts on the two cases? Comment below and let me know.

Danii Gold out

 

Aladdin Review

If you’re a 90’s baby like myself, then you truly loved and enjoyed Disney movies, one in particular Aladdin. During that time, Princess Jasmine was the closest thing to a Disney brown skin princess besides Pocahontas, which was nice to see, me being a woman of color. This movie would make you feel like a kid again.

The intro starts off pretty similar to the original movie, except Disney added the genie, played by Will Smith, telling the story of Aladdin in the beginning. Genie also was telling the story to his two children which will be a significance at the end of the film. Of course the real life action movie couldn’t be an exact replicate of the original but that’s what made it so great! The fact that the story line was still in tact plus Disney showcased the Arabian culture with their clothing and dancing style which was good because it’s nice to see the lifestyle of other cultures.

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Disney addressed women’s right in a sense. When Jafar wanted to take over and be the Sultan, Jasmine brought up the fact that she could be the Sultan. Of course the idea was shot down but towards the end of the film she got the respect she deserved as the female Sultan.

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Will Smith is dope! Of course that is obvious but I had to say it. He didn’t try to be like Robin but instead, he acted like his normal goofy self. Will is usually a great big ball of in energy, especially when his character as Fresh Prince. He played a sentimental role and honestly, the film wouldn’t have been comedic or as relevant without him. 

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The actor and actress who played Aladdin and Jasmine perfected A Whole New World. Them singing the song brought back so many childhood memories. Besides that song, all the other songs were brought to life and were sang to perfection. Will Smith even threw his own twang and beat boxing to the songs. 

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Of course the creation of the movie wouldn’t be visually appeasing without CGI (computer-generated imagery), from the genie’s appearance, to Abu’s appearance, to EVERYTHING else in between. God bless CGI because it truly made the cartoon film come to life.

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As a whole, the film was dope! I do wish that the characters were more brown skin but they weren’t too far off. The music was on point and so was the culture depiction. I tried not to give too many spoilers so others can still go see the movie and still read this beforehand.

I encourage everyone to go see the movie, especially if you were a 90’s baby. I give them movie 5 stars!

Danii Gold out!

KV The Writer Talks Being An Artist and Laughing Through Heartbreak

I got the chance to interview a very talented artist from St. Louis with DELUX Magazine, whom I write for. Check out the interview below.

St. Louis artist KV Thompson, also known as KV The Writer, is more than just that. She sings, raps, writes her own music, and she’s even a published author. KV been writing since she was a kid and with that she’s perfected the skill.

KV’s recent project is about a guy breaking up with her at an ice cream shop. With her getting her heart broke, she channeled her hurt into her music, a full blown EP titled Love Sucks. DELUX was able to talk to her about her transparency, her talents and being an artist here in St. Louis.

DELUX: Being an artist comes with practice or it’s a natural thing. How do you start out singing?

KV: I honestly don’t consider myself a singer (lol.) I think of myself as a songwriter that tries to deliver songs the way I think they should be delivered. Sometimes that requires me to sing. Other times rap. I just try to bring songs to life the best way I can. My producer/engineer is the one that makes me into a singer.

DELUX: Were you hesitant on being so transparent about getting your heart broke?

KV: Not at all. I laugh at myself a lot, including when I get my heart broken. Of course, at the time, it wasn’t very funny, but after a while I would look back and laugh at myself about all the weird and ridiculous situations I found myself in.

DELUX: When dealing with getting your heart broke, did it change your perception on dating during these times versus 10 years ago?

KV: I can say 10 years ago I knew nothing about dating or what it meant to be your full self while in a partnership. 10 years from now I’m sure I’ll still be learning about how to form a romantic partnership with another person. I would say getting my heartbroken was a much needed lesson on love and attachment. It made me realize that we don’t own people, even the ones we love. People are free to walk out of your life for whatever reason. We have to appreciate the moments and seasons they are in our life, and don’t try to hold on to something past its time.

DELUX: How long have you been singing and who is the inspiration behind your sound?

KV: I started really developing the sound I have now about 2 years ago. I pushed my pen by writing songs every day for a whole year. During this time, I experimented a lot. I played around by writing songs for different genres, started practicing making melodies, and played with my voice a lot. I guess what inspires my sound is just being true to me. Whatever I feel like should come out, I do that.

DELUX: Your song “Crazy” is dope with you rapping and singing? There are only so many female artist that does that such as Nicki Minaj and even Lauryn Hill. With you having talent in both, would you consider yourself a singer, rapper or an artist overall?

Check out her response and the rest of the interview HERE

Make sure you follow her on IG @KVTheWriter

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I Wasn’t A Fan, But It Makes Me Sad: RIP Nipsey Hussle

A week ago today, I was scrolling through YouTube and I came across a GQ video that featured Lauren London & Nipsey Hussle, a couple’s quiz. Since I like Lauren as an actress and Nipsey is a well-respected rapper, I decided to watch it. It was so cute, Lauren was her sassy self and Nipsey was so cool and calm and answered damn near every question correct, all but one six at least lol.

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To be honest, I’ve only listened to one Nipsey song, “Last Time That I Checc’d” and I like it, but I never listened to his whole album unfortunately. I do know that his first album Victory Lap was nominated for a Grammy this year. I do know that Nipsey was a man of the community. He’s from Crenshaw and Slauson, and he used to hustled so he could get money for his music. It worked and when he got the money, he gave back to the community that helped mold him. He invested into programs for children and even helped reconstruct a playground in his neighborhood of Crenshaw. He opened a clothing store, The Marathon Clothing, selling  apparel with the city Crenshaw on it. On top of that, he bought out some of the other businesses in the plaza that his business is in. It’s been told that he even hired local artists and others in the community to work at his store. 

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As far and his relationship goes, Nipsey and Lauren London kept their love life semi private. We would see the pictures and happy captions but never the negative, which is how it should be. They had a baby boy and kept him out of the spotlight. They recently gave us a glimpse of their relationship through GQ. 

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So with little or just enough information I have on this guy, why am I sad that he passed away? Why do I get teary-eyed when reading other artists’ post on social media mourning him? Why do I shed a tear for his lady Lauren London and his kids even tho I’ve never met them? Why do I sit and read all the stories people told about him? The answer to all that is because…it’s sad to see a young man who was praised and respected by many, get killed by his own kind. It’s sad to see a young man who was giving back to his community get killed in front of his business that he worked hard for. It’s sad to see a young man grow from the streets and flourish into a well-rounded individual. 

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I’ve lost someone close to me at a young age. He was 21 and my cousin; we grew up like siblings because that’s just how it was. I remember him from when he was in diapers and watched him grow and go off to college with me. He was killed by his own kind, some say it was someone that he knew. That was a hard time for me and it took me a year to stop crying about it whenever I brought his name up. It changed me, made me more paranoid. I couldn’t watch movies where people were violently killed and young. If I did, I would get emotional and cry. I’m better now, but I’m still a simp when it comes to those scenes lol. But he was into music and was a well-rounded cool, calm dude but sometimes your own people will hate on you. Maybe that’s why Nipsey’s death hit so close to home for me. 

All in all, I’m not going to act like I was a big Nipsey fan. I’m not going to fake it. Yes, I shoulda gave this man his flowers while he was here, but I didn’t. But…what I will do is respect his legacy. I am sad for his death because he didn’t deserve it. I will continue to pray for his family and hope that his killer gets that life sentence in prison.

What are your thoughts on Nipsey’s death? Comment below and let me know.

Danii Gold out!

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Let’s Talk Boomerang on BET

So, we’re five episodes in to BET’s show “Boomerang” and it’s addressed soooooo many millennial issues. If you haven’t seen the show or know what it’s about, it’s the spinoff show to the movie Boomerang, featuring Eddie Murphy, Halle Berry, Robin Givens, Martin Lawrence, David Alan Grier and other famous faces.

The movie is about Marcus Graham, played be Eddie Murphy, who’s a lady man and he runs game on them in order to have sex with them. (Typically guy shit). He gets a taste of his own medicine when a woman by the name of Jacqueline Broyer, played by Robin Givens, does the same to him. Eventually he catches on to her game and becomes interested in another woman named Angela, played by Halle Berry, who is more his speed. Fast forward, they live happily ever after.

Fast forward again, on the show Boomerang Marcus and Angela have a daughter named Simone Graham, played by Tetona Jackson. She works for her dad’s marketing agency but she wants to make a way on her own. Her friends Bryson Broyer, played by Tequan Richmond (Jacquline’s son), and Crystal Garrett played by Brittany Inge, work at the firm as well but they’re happy there. Other character fall in line like David Wright played by RJ Walker, who is their pastor friend, and Ari, played by Leland Martin, who is their bisexual friend and he’s comfortable with that and so are his friends. Tia, played by Instastar LaLa Milan, is a stripper but she quit so Simone can help build her image and her brand through Instagram.

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The show is about typical millennials tryna make a way and live their life doing what they want. Simone wants a name for herself but without using her parents name. Bryson is tryna get his money but without getting distracted by Simone, since he’s crushing on her. Crystal is trying to get back in her groove since she and David divorced, they were married right after college. Then there’s Ari, living his best life. He hasn’t been on the last two episodes but he’ll be back the week of March 5. Tia is the realest and she’ll tell what it is and what she doesn’t like, especially Simone when it comes to her image.

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The show definitely has good music, from Summer Walker’s “Girls Need Love,” to Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love”, to Travis Porter’s “Make it Rain,” to Brandy’s “I Wanna Be Down,” to plenty more.

Other activities and normal things that millennials do that the show address is:

  • Playing spades: asking how each player plays. “Do y’all play Big Joker or Deuces?”
  • Going to the strip club: millennial woman actually go to the strip clubs and not because we are gay or bisexual. We just enjoy the entertainment and even the chicken wings they serve lol. (No lie).
  • Not knowing what to do after college. Crystal married David right after college and she said “I didn’t know what I wanted to be so I decided to be someone’s wife.” Yikes!! First of all, I can relate but at the same time, marrying a guy because you didn’t know what career you wanted to pursue is ridiculous. BUT, us millennials are all about taking a risk, doing what’s best for us at the moment and figuring out the rest later.
  • Prepping for FaceTime calls: nowadays when you’re feeling someone and they FaceTime you, you gotta make sure your hair right, skin right, flexin ya chest, etc.

Bryson said: “Black millennials want it all. We have to be present for everything, because being young, black and gifted is cool but it’s exhausting.” To me, that means millennials want to have everything but in order for them/us to do so we have to be everywhere meeting people, networking etc. which can be very exhausting but that’s what keeps us on our toes, knowledgeable and gifted.

if you haven’t seen the show, you’re missing out. It’s really present day life shit.nthe cast is great, including LaLa Milan from Instagram, she’s funny AF, if you’ve been watching the show, how do you feel about it? Comment below and let me know.

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Danii Gold out!! ✌🏾✌🏾✌🏾