Culture & Politics

Today I’m sharing a list of cultural and political tidbits.

  1. Ministry of Hats:
    This month’s Bold Life Magazine‘s has a great cover story about Sandra Suber, owner of Ianodell’s Hat Shop in Mills River. “Though the church-hat tradition hasn’t caught on with the younger generation, Suber still sees a niche for her business. ‘So many churches are going casual — but there are always some ladies who like hats, and they don’t stop. If you like hats, I don’t worry about you coming back — because I know you’re coming back. You can’t find anything like this around here.'” Note her 23rd Annual Chapeau Fashion Show and Luncheon coming up on May 20th in Hendersonville!Red-Hat-Lady-RZ
  2. ROOTS Week 2017:
    I am thrilled to be a part of the team for ROOTS Week 2017, which will be held at Arden in August. “ROOTS Week Annual Meeting & Artists’ Retreat is a one-of-a-kind gathering – six days of performances, art and organizing workshops, visual art exhibitions, late-night cabarets…in a retreat-like setting in the mountains of North Carolina. Artists, cultural organizers, and their families come from across the South (and beyond!), joining an ever-growing, ever-changing network of people committed to building a just world through arts, community, and activism.” Click here to find out more and register.
  3. mullenUncovering the State of Black Asheville:
    UNC Asheville’s Dr. Dwight Mullen was recently interviewed on WUNC’s The State of Things. Click here to listen. I also encourage you to listen to the two interviews Dr. Mullen did with The Waters & Harvey Show on BPR News. Click here for those (as well as all of the other fascinating episodes). FYI, The Waters & Harvey Show is also a podcast on iTunes.
  4. This Mother’s Day, Black Lives Matter Activists Will Give More Than 30 Women Their Freedom
    “This week, black women in more than a dozen jails across the country will receive a Mother’s Day gift from the Black Lives Matter movement: their freedom. These women are among the 62 percent of people in jail who are there not because they’ve been convicted of a crime but because they can’t pay to get back to their lives as they await trial. Organizers with Southerners on New Ground (SONG), the Movement for Black Lives, ColorOfChange, and other groups have reached their goal of raising more than $250,000 for what they’re calling National Mama’s Bail Out Day, and are continuing to raise more.” Click here for an article about this action in The Nation.
  5. “City council hears APD’s response to racial profiling accusations”
    Click here for this WLOS story about this conversation at Tuesday night’s council meeting. And for a thorough overview of the issue of documented racial disparities in policing in Asheville, click here for investigative reporting by the Asheville Blade.
  6. A Million Dollars for the People
    The question of the City of Asheville budgeting a $1M to hire an additional 15 police officers continues to be debated, and folks continue to organize for “A Million Dollars for the People.” I want to share a Facebook post from Tamiko Ambrose-Murray, “An extra million dollars worth of policing does not make me feel safe. That I live in a city that is even considering prioritizing policing over the investment to build up a community with less need for police is scary. With all this public data about police actively targeting communities of color IN OUR CITY, it does not make any sense at all to give them extra money to expand their forces. Do not insult my intelligence please. A ridiculous ask, and NO! THIS proposal makes me feel very unsafe.”
  7.  Two Equity-Related Events This Weekend
    The latest Building Bridges newsletter has details on MountainTrue’s “Equity in Planning Tour” on Saturday morning and “Malverse,” a new play by local playwright John Crutchfield at the Magnetic Theater. Click here to read. 
  8. Youth Artist Spotlight
    The second Tuesday of every month, musician and educator Jonathan Santos hosts the #glocalsouledu Youth Artist Spotlight at The Hop West. Young performers get free ice cream for sharing their talents at this supportive event. I have not been able to make one, though I have been enthusiastically following along online. Santos posted this about the May event, “Thank you to everyone that shared in the spotlight, brought a friend, shared a ride, or just lent a listening ear and a smile! Together we shine brighter! Thank you Charlotte, thank you Quantasia, thank you DJ Dallas, thank you lil Melody, thank you Sharissa, thank you Ron, thank you Devin, thank you Donavan, thank you Dorian, thank you Kellen, thank you Danny, thank you thank you MC Melody, thank you Serenity, thank you Imani, thank you Ayanfe, thank you Ebonee, thank you to the Hop and everyone else that lent their energy. In the Wisdom of our 7 year old Cellist, Let’s work out dreams everyday! See you next month!”youth-voices

There is much work to be done, and much good to celebrate. 



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