by Reagan Jackson
The Emerald blows loudly as the royal trumpet, signaling that there is indeed life abundant. It’s the sound of information, the sound of challenge, the sound of change and — maybe most importantly — the sound of hope. Join me in supporting the Emerald as a recurring donor during their 8th anniversary campaign, Ripples & Sparks at Home, April 20–28. Become a Rainmaker now by choosing the “recurring donor” option on the donation page!
—Marcus Harden, Educator, Author, & Rainmaker
Grammy-winning singer-songwriter, rapper, flutist, and all-around icon Melissa Jefferson, aka Lizzo, just released a reality TV series called Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls that is 100% bingeworthy. Talented, ratchet, authentic, hilarious, and strong, when Lizzo brings her outlandish outfits and bigger-than-life personality to the screen, you cannot look away. The show begins with 13 dancers invited to do a private audition for Lizzo to perform onstage with her at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival.
Continue reading ‘Lizzo’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls’ Is 100% the Show the World Needs Now
by Michele Storms
Note: The ACLU of Washington by policy does not endorse or oppose candidates for elected or appointed office.
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, which would make her the nation’s first Black woman justice, is as remarkable now as it was unimaginable for me as a child or even as a college student.
Continue reading OPINION: Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court Nomination Is a Moment to Celebrate
by Beverly Aarons
A faceless young woman in a white “number 3” jersey rests her unseen hand against her hip — behind her a running track fades into the distance. A large brimmed hat sits stylishly slanted on a church lady’s head, and a young girl lugs a book bag into a mysterious hallway — she’s flanked by a man wearing a white armband. These “Iconic Black Women’’ paintings by visual artist Hiawatha D., are just a few of many that greet visitors at the Wonder of Women Gallery (WOW) in Pacific Place shopping mall (600 Pine Street, 3rd Floor, Seattle, WA).
Continue reading WOW Gallery Owners’ Black Love Journey Creates Space for Healing
by Patheresa Wells
Princess Imoukhuede’s (pronounced I-muh-KWU-e-de) love for science is infectious. Her eyes light up each time she speaks about the field which she has pursued her whole life. It’s this passionate pursuit which led, last month, to Imoukhuede being named the new chair of the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Washington in Seattle. The department is part of both the UW College of Engineering and the UW School of Medicine. Effective Jan. 1, 2022, Imoukhuede will hold the Hunter and Dorothy Simpson Endowed Chair and Professorship.
Continue reading UW’s Department of Bioengineering Names New Chair
by Elizabeth Turnbull
At the entrance of Pike Place Market, next to Ellenos Greek Yogurt and across from where the fish are thrown, one woman and her family pour organic fruits, vegetables, and joy into the lives of Seattleites and tourists who visit the Black-owned business rōJō Juice.
“Customers say that the music that we play, the energy that we give literally like … gets them out of bed,” Rhonda Faison, the owner of rōJō Juice, told the Emerald. “… and whether they buy a juice or not they just love to be around rōJō and the energy.”
Continue reading Black-Owned rōJō Juice Pours Out Organic Juices and Love
by Elizabeth Turnbull
As of last week, the Port of Seattle is encouraging business owners, particularly women and entrepreneurs of color and business owners in South King County, to apply to the PortGen Accelerator, a business development program aimed at helping small businesses work toward future contracting opportunities.
Continue reading Port of Seattle Business Accelerator Centers Women- and Minority-Owned Businesses
by Bri Little
There is no shortage of books about racism, and since the Black Lives Matter protests last summer, anti-racist books have been pushed to the forefront as essential reading. I have read a number of books about racism to interrogate my own internalized anti-Blackness, but most of them, paradoxically, center whiteness because the author usually writes for the benefit and education of white readers. Texts as teaching tools do have their place, but anti-racist books aiming to help Black people cope with their experiences of racial violence are few and far between.
In Amber Ruffin and Lacey Lamar’s 2021 release, You’ll Never Believe What Happened To Lacey, the sisters use a fresh, intentional approach to recount the constant barrage of macro- and microaggressions Black women endure and often internalize. With pitch-perfect humor, heart, and a take-no-prisoners attitude, Ruffin, a comedian, and her sister, Lamar, whom most of the stories are about, offer kinship in sharing their experiences, and freedom, in the ways we can respond to this violence.
Continue reading BOOK REVIEW: You’ll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey
by Chamidae Ford
In a riveting new exhibit on the many ways the Black female body is gentrified, Anastacia-Reneé brings us into her character Alice Metropolis’s life as she struggles with breast cancer, white supremacy, redlining, and the gentrification of her neighborhood.
This immersive new exhibit, called (Don’t Be Absurd) Alice in Parts, combines video, poetry, art installations, audio tracks, and photography to tell the story of Alice Metropolis.
During the virtual opening night event, hosted by Dani Tirrell, Anastacia-Reneé emphasized that the goal of her exhibit was to highlight the parallels of the gentrification of the Black physical space, the Black body, and the Black mind.
Continue reading Anastacia-Reneé’s Solo Exhibit at the Frye Explores Gentrification of the Black Woman’s Body
by Beverly Aarons
Winter is here. The long, dark days. The cold wind. The wet and freezing rain. And since this is 2020, we can probably add quite a bit of snow to that list. But just beneath the blanket of gray is a golden thread of sunshine — a Seattle cook, born and bred right in this city, hopes to bring a little warmth to the hearts and hearths of this beleaguered town. Veronica Very, the owner of Black’Butta Co., has always cooked but not in any official capacity before the pandemic. She was (and still is) a writer, the wife and business partner of visual artist Hiawatha D., and the founder of Women of Wonder, “a sacred space for Black women and girls.” But the pandemic forced her to get creative about her next business move.
Continue reading Black’Butta Co. Delivers Love-Kissed Sweets to Pandemic Weary Seattle
by Sharon Maeda
Exhaling … from the emotional exhaustion of the past four years. Saturday evening, after Joe Biden and Kamala Harris spoke as president and vice president elect, I joined the thousands, if not millions of Americans who finally slept through the night and woke up refreshed.
I had written commentary before the election, waiting only to insert a paragraph with the exact results. It was a get-this-out-of-my-system litany of the dishonest, disgusting, and death-causing policies of the current president. Writing was a good release as my fingers flew over the keyboard. But I realized Emerald readers have already lived through enough political trauma.
Continue reading Exhaling …