• Umme-Hani Khan, who was fired by Abercrombie for wearing a hijab, has won her discrimination case. Abercrombie argued to the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that their workers are not employees subject to regular employment law but actually "living advertisements." Nice try, jerks. [Today]
• dapperQ tackled the lack of diversity at New York Fashion Week by co-producing their own fashion show, representing "queer owned and operated brands designing menswear for masculine presenting women, gender-queers, and trans* identified individuals." [Autostraddle]
You may not have heard of hip hop producer Ebony Oshunrinde. Stop! Don't rush to Wikipedia because you feel out of touch. We often don't know the government names of many artists to whom we regularly listen and there's nothing wrong with that. What's surprising to me is that you may not have heard of Ms. Oshunrinde's nom de plume Wondagurl, either.
At just 16, this young woman has garnered production credits on Jay-Z's game-changing album "Magna Carta Holy Grail," a feat that men twice her age would gladly sell their souls to the illuminati to accomplish. Say what you want about Jigga, but producing anything for a multi-platinum recording artist is a big deal, especially if you're a woman.
I'm usually skeptical of advertising. I know companies spend millions of dollars hoping that their body lotion or paper towels or lunch meat will bring me to tears.
But ads are powerful. They're a form of media where we see representations of ourselves and our society, just like on TV shows they interrupt. And it's rare to see people like me—with a black father and a white mother—represented in ads.
Earlier this year, like many other people, I heard about a Cheerios ad, "Just Checking," that featured an interracial family—a white mother, black father and their daughter—before I saw it. I was excited about it, sure, but why I was excited didn't really register until I finally did see it for myself.
My grandmother, Geneva Wright, in the 1950s in Syracuse, New York.
I grew up hearing a story.
My grandmother was a cleaning lady for a white family that kept the fingers and toes of black people in a jar on their mantle. No, this was not slavery. This was 1940's South Carolina. When I saw Lee Daniels' The Butler, I thought of my grandmother's experience, and how one can endure and somehow withstand dehumanization on a daily basis, only to survive, and love after it all.
I love a summer blockbuster. I'll take a dystopic future flick, a classic underdog tale, and all of the explosions you can send my way. When it comes to summer movies, escapism is a major draw; it's nice to sit back and fully immerse yourself in an alternate reality.
But it's hard to immerse yourself in a reality where people like you are relegated to the margins of the storyline. Which was my experience when watching this summer's Elysiumon the big screen.