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Jadakiss, Master of Ceremony

The emcee may need to be in all of our Top 5 DOA’s after that Verzus masterclass

I started on Twitter. That’s where all news starts for me. Weeks prior, I had been following the back and forth on Instagram though — Styles P, aka the Ghost and more conscious member of the prolific rap group The Lox, and Jim Jones, once Cam’ron hype man and mouthpiece…

Photo by One zone Studio on Unsplash

How we talk about sex has largely been shaped by whiteness — it’s time to change that.

The word autonomy has become a part of the lexicon in my household.

My daughters may not fully understand the definition, but it’s become part of our regular communication. It’s a reminder that they have a say in what gets to happen with their bodies. I want them to understand…

For too long, women have been forced to remain quiet about the abuse they’ve suffered at the hands of men who were meant to protect them

TRIGGER WARNING:

Toward the end of Allen v. Farrow, the HBO docuseries detailing Dylan Farrow’s harrowing account of abuse, I felt a large lump in my throat.

It had been there from the beginning of the series, but something about Mia Farrow’s adopted daughter, now an adult, sharing her story…

Our art gets to inspire — and be inspired by — cultural and political shifts

I was on my second to last glass of whiskey. The hum of the ceiling fan gently cooed in my ears. I rocked you to sleep, slowly and silently, while Daniel Kaluuya, as Fred Hampton, finished the speech of a lifetime. …

The energy can’t be duplicated

“New Jack City.” Photo: Warner Bros.

New Jack City makes me feel nostalgic.

My partner and I watch — and, at times, laugh — while Wesley Snipes delivers his tragic, Shakespearean performance. While we watch, I am talking about Christopher Williams’ acting debut and singing “I’m Dreamin’” louder than our Bed-Stuy apartment’s walls can take. I’m…

Our biases and projections affect how we engage with Black art

“If I don’t like I don’t like it, I don’t like it/It don’t mean that I’m hating…” — Common “6th Sense”

The first time around watching Malcolm & Marie, the latest must-see stream TV on Netflix featuring the rising stars of Zendaya and John David Washington, we stopped watching after…

Photo by Kiana Bosman on Unsplash

Black girls deserve to live in the beauty of their Blackness

Before I hand my infant daughter to her mother for feeding and soothing, I talk to her in rhymes and spellbound lyrics from Jay-Z songs and Old Dirty Bastard ad-libs. I finish tickling her small tummy, the tummy that can fit under the whole of my palm. …

The truth will set us free — it will also help us heal

Photo: Nicole Baster via Unsplash

There are two types of parents: carpenters and gardeners.

Carpenters believe they can build the kind of structure for their children that will dictate a successful outcome. But gardeners create the space to allow their children to thrive.

I liken myself to a gardener. Both of my daughters were born…

We get to return to love as we grow from our experiences

“Red or green pill, you live and you learn…” — Jay-Z “Excuse Me Miss”

Looks like we are riding off to the sunset… want to thank everyone who has read their column and shared their love for it on the interwebs. For now, the weekly Medium column “What Would Hov…

Joel Leon.

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