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Social Media Fad Desensitizes Trayvon Martin’s Death

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Trayvoning

By: Brea Hammonds

Social Media has become the go to place for the latest news and the most popular trends. With the invention of Instagram, where users upload pictures with funny captions, commonly referred to as memes, it has become bigger than Facebook and twitter updates.

An extremely controversial meme is starting to become very popular among teenagers. About a year ago, planking, a fad where teenagers would pose laying face down on random objects and take pictures posing as planks; bowling where teens would stand on objects and pose like owls; and last but not least ‘tebowing’ were teenagers would take pictures imitating the famous football player Tim Tebow took the youth by storm. Now a meme based upon the death of Trayvon Martin is sparking major controversy around the nation.

Martin was walking home from the store and profiled as suspicious by George Zimmerman. Zimmerman claimed Martin attacked him, causing him to fear for his life, before shooting and killing Martin. Zimmerman was recently acquitted of all charges in the case, already causing a lot of controversy, and adding fuel to the fire.

Kids are posing with a black hoodie on, holding a bag of skittles, a can of Arizona Ice Tea, and laying down on the ground as if they were shot. Members of the community are hurt to see that the same thing once used for good is now being used to defame the senseless death of Martin.

Haleigh Nickerson, a rising sophomore at University of California, Berkeley, thinks the new fad is disheartening and inconsiderate.

“I do not understand how anyone could possible think this is funny and whoever invented this is sick,” said Nickerson. “People do not understand this is not “planking” or “tebowing,” this is mocking an innocent teenager who was killed. The death of Trayvon should not involve the desensitized comical reenactments, jokes, or laughs. It is upsetting to see people poking fun at such a terrible situation.”

How do you feel about ‘Trayvoning”? Let us know by commenting on our facebook page www.facebook.com/postnewsgroup or following us on Twitter @postmediagroup.

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Bay Area

Bay Area’s Black Fraternities and Sororities Award $180,000 in Scholarships

Graduating seniors from all over the Bay Area as well as continuing college students were recognized for their academic achievements by the member organizations.

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Photo courtesy of NPHC facebook

On June 6, the San Francisco Bay Area National Pan Hellenic Council held its annual scholarship reception virtually where over 100 students were awarded a total of $180,000 in scholarships.

Chaired by Dr. Joseph Marshall, the SF Bay NPHC is comprised of 25 chapters of the nine historically Black fraternities and sororities – Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, and Iota Phi Theta Fraternity.

Graduating seniors from all over the Bay Area as well as continuing college students were recognized for their academic achievements by the member organizations.

Recipients will be attending a wide variety of schools including HBCUs, prestigious colleges and local institutions like Howard University, Spelman College, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse University, Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, UC Berkeley, San Francisco State and Cal State East Bay.

In addition to the scholarships awarded by the individual chapters, the council awarded the Mrs. Bethola Harper Scholarships and the two SF Bay NPHC book scholarships.

Brigitte Cook is the vice president of the NPHC.

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Activism

Rent Relief in California: Understanding the State’s Program and How You Can Apply

Based on income level, qualified applicants can receive assistance with unpaid rent and utilities and with future payments.

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Due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, paying rent has become a real struggle for millions of Californians. But help is available to renters and landlords through the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program. 

Based on income level, qualified applicants can receive assistance with unpaid rent and utilities and with future payments.

Funding comes from the $2.6 billion in federal emergency rental assistance provided to support both state and local rent relief programs in California. The CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program isn’t the sole resource for rent relief for California renters and landlords; many cities and counties are either currently administering their own rent relief programs – or launching one soon.

Cities and counties with populations greater than 200,000 are employing one of three rent relief options: option A) the state-administered CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program; option B) a local city- or county-administered program using the same eligibility criteria as option A; and option C) a local city-or county-administered program using different eligibility criteria, in some cases, in combination with a portion administered by the state.

While the programs vary, the goals are the same: Keep people housed and provide quick assistance to those at the highest risk of eviction.

To simplify access to rent relief programs in California, the state launched HousingIsKey.com. The website directs renters and landlords to the programs that they may qualify for based on where they live. After applicants provide the address of their rental property (landlords) or their residents (renters), they are sent to a website where they can review eligibility criteria and complete an application. Applicants can also call the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief Call Center (833-430-2122) to find out which program to apply for and get help in a variety of languages.

Who’s eligible for the CA COVID-19 Rent Relief Program

Renters who have suffered a financial hardship because of COVID-19 and are behind on rent or utilities (or need help paying upcoming bills) are eligible to apply. They must have an Area Median Income (AMI) below 80% for the county they live in (this amount is calculated for the applicant during the application process). Either a renter or a landlord can initiate an application, online or through the call center, and both are encouraged to participate to maximize the amount of assistance received. The state’s program is prioritizing applications from households at the highest risk of eviction – those under 50% of the Area Median Income.

Landlords participating in the program receive 80% of an eligible tenant’s unpaid rent accrued between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021, if they agree to waive the remaining 20% of unpaid rent. Renters whose landlords choose not to participate in the program can apply directly, and receive 25% of unpaid rent accrued between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021, which can help protect them from eviction under SB 91 if they pay that 25% directly to their landlords. Renters can also apply to receive financial assistance with future rent. They may also qualify for assistance with unpaid or future utility payments.

Applicant information is kept private. Renter’s information will not be shared with the landlord, and vice versa. Applicants may be eligible to participate in the program regardless of immigration status and proof of citizenship is not required. Rent relief assistance does not count as earned income and will not interfere with eligibility for any other state benefit assistance programs such as CalFresh.

The CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program is supported through a $3 million public education and outreach campaign, which includes radio, digital media, out-of-home, and print advertising. Thousands of statewide community-based organizations, trade and industry groups and businesses have been enlisted to assist with outreach to communities most in need. The state has also allocated $24 million to support on-the-ground organizations to work directly with applicants in communities throughout the state. To make an appointment with a local organization, applicants are encouraged to call 833-687-0967.

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Bay Area

CupCakin Bakeshop in Berkeley

The menu features multiple tasty flavors of cupcakes daily, and the shop also offers catering services and online orders.

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CupCakin Bakeshop is a Back-owned bakery at 2391 Telegraph Ave. in  Berkeley, open from Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m.-6 p.m. and Friday and Saturday 11 a.m.-7 p.m. for deliveries and takeout orders. 


The menu features multiple tasty flavors of cupcakes daily, and the shop also offers catering services and online orders. CupCakin Bakeshop  gives donations to different organizations and hospitals all over the Bay Area. Follow the shop on social media to learn more about the donations or take a glimpse of their yummy treats @CupCakinBakeShop Instagram page. Placeorders online at https://cupcakinbakeshop.com/

 

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