Mashable

The season finale of Queen Sugar was a love letter to black people. The series is a departure from the ways our stories have been told because the storylines offer a view of deeply complex and robust people.

The Bordelons are beautiful and gritty, cacophonous and melodious, focused and yet opaque. The stories of their lives are a provocation to embrace the full humanity of how black lives intersect. Ernest’s words, the lives of the Bordelon siblings, and the genius of Ava DuVernay call us all in. We are coaxed out of our dependency on harmful narratives of black lives we’ve become accustomed to.

Ernest’s letter is a letter to all black folks. We have an inheritance that is full of possibility if we tend to it and let it thrive. “You are more than you know. You are better than you think.”

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Darren Criss tapped as behind-the-scenes digital host for NBC's 'Hairspray Live!'
Criss will interact with the production throughout the night.
By Saba Hamedy

November 29, 2016

The Glee alum has been tapped as the multiplatform host for NBC’s live telecast of Hairspray Live!, Mashable has exclusively  learned.

The uplifting musical comedy delves into the issues of racial segregation in Baltimore in the 1960s. The live TV production will air on NBC on Wednesday Dec. 7.

Newcomer Maddie Baillio has been tapped to play the lead role of Tracy Turnblad. Other cast members include Jennifer Hudson (Motormouth Maybelle), Ariana Grande (Penny), Kristin Chenoweth (Velma Von Tussle), Martin Short (Wilbur Turnblad), Harvey Fierstein (Edna Turnblad; he is also one of the show’s writers), Derek Hough (Corny Collins), Sean Hayes (Mr. Pinkie) and Rosie O’Donnell (gym teacher).

Throughout the night, Criss will give fans on digital platforms behind-the-scenes access to the show and check in on live ‘60s-themed viewing parties around the country.

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Where are the Asian leading men? Well we’re being kicked to the ground, we’re not being supported. We’re not considered sexy or masculine, this or that. When you start hearing something enough, you start to believe it. But our world is changing, and I think we’re starting to see that that’s not the end-all be-all. That’s not the only answer.

I’m happy to be a real character, the “leading male,” in [the CW’s] “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” The show has set a bar and said, “Hey, network television, you can have an Asian male be a love interest.”

I think our show is a beginning. It’s a new beginning and I’m very excited about it. I had those thoughts of what it means to be in my position, but the reason I don’t swim through them every day, is because ultimately, I’m just an actor.

That’s what’s kind of provocative about our show: We’re doing something as simple as “let’s just authentically represent the real world, shall we?” And that’s powerful. That’s progressive.

Josh is allowed to be someone real. He’s not as smart as any Asian stereotype expects him to be. He’s a regular bro. And by being a bro, it’s telling everyone that Asians, too, can be bros. Indians can be bros. Latinos can be bros.

It’s funny how simple progress truly can be. (x)

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A blind man and a double amputee planted 10,000 trees.

“I am his hands. He is my eyes.”

Jia Haixa talks of his symbiotic relationship with his friend Jia Wenqi — a double amputee. The pair work together to plant trees in Yeli village, just outside of Shijiazhuang city, northern China. 

The friends approached the local government and leased a 7.5 acre stretch of land along the riverbank. They hope to transform it by planting 1,000 trees every year, and have been doing that for a decade.

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Under the Influence of Media
No matter what influences the world around you, always be sure that you are being not influenced, or peer pressured, but inspired. There is not one moment in...

No matter what influences the world around you, always be sure that you are being not influenced, or peer pressured, but inspired. There is not one moment in your life that you need to feel like you need to be something you’re not, look like something you are not, or be someone you are not, due to trends or what you see around you. Everyone grows as a person, and everyone will change. Make sure that as you evolve as a person, you evolve as yourself, not someone else.