*A City Council member in Scottsdale, Ariz. is now apologizing for using the dying words of George Floyd during an anti-mask rally to complain about wearing face coverings.
Masks have been mandated in areas of Arizona, where coronavirus cases have been skyrocketing. During the event Wednesday, Republican Councilman Guy Phillips wore a black face mask, prompting the crowd to shout, “Take the mask off!” In a monotone voice, he responded in the microphone, “I can’t breathe.” He then repeated it, louder: “I can’t breathe” — adopting Floyd’s dying words that have become a rallying cry in nationwide protests against police violence.
Then Phillips ripped off his mask, rolled his eyes and feigned relief as the crowd cheered. He called the mask mandate, “Insanity!”
Needless to say, he’s facing calls to step down.
Per The Washington Post,
Critics on both sides of the aisle have condemned his “callous” insult to Floyd’s memory and the nation’s reckoning over racial injustice. Sen. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) called Phillips’s “I can’t breathe” comment “despicable” while Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) said “despicable doesn’t go far enough” to describe Phillips’s behavior. “The final words of George Floyd should NEVER be invoked like this,” Ducey wrote on Twitter. “Anyone who mocks the murder of a fellow human has no place in public office. Period.”
Phillips told KPNX he intended to show how restrictive masks are and not to mock Floyd.
“It was a stupid and insensitive comment that I shouldn’t have made, and I had no intention of disrespecting anybody while making that comment,” Phillips, who began his second term in 2017, said in a phone interview with the NBC affiliate in Phoenix. The Arizona Republic reported that he also apologized to Floyd’s family.
“I am sorry about a comment I made today that was the same comment Mr. Floyd had made. He didn’t deserve what happened to him, and I by no means was trying to make light of it by saying I can’t breathe in a mask,” Phillips said. “Please accept my sincerest apology and that goes out to anyone who became offended.”
Congresswoman-Elect Cori Bush Says She Was Mistaken for Breonna Taylor at Congressional Freshmen Orientation (Watch)
*Rocking a beautiful Black Lives Matter Christmas “ugly sweater,” Congresswoman-Elect Cori Bush blessed the “Late Show with Stephen Colbert” on Tuesday and talked about everything from her first priority after taking office, to going thrift shopping with her soon-to-be Congressional colleagues Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ayanna Pressley – both members of “The Squad,” which will officially welcome the Missouri congresswoman into its progressive bosom in January.
Bush told Cobert that “COVID-19 relief” will be her first order of business after being sworn in. “It has hit my district in St. Louis … along with our state. We don’t have a mask mandate.”
Bush also talked about being mistaken for Breonna Taylor at her congressional freshmen orientation by fellow House members, and being driven to run for Congress to make sure America understands what Black people in the community are going through everyday.
Watch her interview with Colbert below.
Meet Noah Harris, First Black Man Elected Harvard Student Body President (Watch)
*Noah Harris has just become the first Black man to be elected president of Harvard University’s student body. On Tuesday, he appeared on MSNBC’s “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” to credit late Congressman John Lewis as his motivation and biggest inspiration.
Harris, a native of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, is a junior government major and also co-chairs the Undergraduate Council’s Black Caucus. He said that his three main goals will be improving student life, increasing access to mental health and wellness, and diversity inclusion.
Harris told O’Donnell that civil rights icon Lewis had a “profound impact” on him and that he hopes to embody his “love of country.”
‘Bachelorette’ Star Tayshia Adams Gets Emotional During Rare Conversation About Race [VIDEO]
*“Bachelorette”Star Tayshia Adams opened up about racism and the Black Lives Matter movement during a rare conversation about race on the hit dating series.
Adams confessed to biracial contestant Ivan Hall on Tuesday’s episode that the death of George Floyd changed her perspective as a Black/Latina woman. She became emotional during their date while explaining her experience as a woman of color in America.
“Being in Orange County and surrounded by a lot of people that don’t look like me — being the only person that looks like me — I’m realizing that I’ve been trying so hard my whole life to blend in because I knew I was different,” said Adams of her California upbringing. “I didn’t really want to cry about it or open up about it, but hearing people yell ‘Black Lives Matter,’ it hit me more than I realize just because those are people in my backyard that I’ve been trying to prove for so long that I’m the same as them.”
— Tayshia Adams (@tayshia) November 24, 2020
Hall also shared his own experience as man of color, and recalled how his younger brother was mistreated in prison by correctional officers.
Adamsl told the camera, “He understands me more than anybody else can. That’s obviously what I’ve been looking for.”
The casting of Adams and the discussion about race comes months after Rachel Lindsay, the franchise’s first Black lead, called out the “Bachelor” franchise for “systemic racism.”
In response, producers diversified the popular series both in front of and behind the camera.
“We made a concerted effort, before the pandemic, to make better strides for diversity and let people see themselves and their love represented on the show,” host and producer Chris Harrison told The Hollywood Reporter. “I think the best thing we ever did was realizing and admitting there was an issue, and then saying, ‘Let’s get to work and let’s do better.'”
Speaking to the publication earlier in the season about starring on the show, Adams said: “Not only am I African American, but I am Mexican, and I’m going to have an opportunity to have a platform to relate to so many women who look like me, who haven’t had the opportunity to relate to someone in the past. How can you not want to take that opportunity and be an amazing role model for people? That was something that I took on and was really excited to be able to do.”
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