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Racist moments from WWE catalog fade on transition to streaming platform

WWE Network fans have seen and heard racist tropes in the ring for years.

In a 1990 showdown between Roddy Piper and Bad News Brown, a black wrestler, Mr. Piper, who is white, showed up to the match with half of his face painted black.

In 2005, WWE General Manager Vince McMahon used a racial slur on several occasions in a prepared skit.

Until recently, these segments were available to watch on the WWE Network, allowing subscribers to revisit old WrestleMania episodes and seasons dating back to the 1980s. But this month, after WWE episodes have started switching to Peacock, NBCUniversal’s newest streaming service, longtime wrestling viewers noticed they couldn’t find either of the two segments.

“The whole game is over,” said Christopher Jeter, 30, who has watched pro wrestling since he was 10 and now writes about it for Daily DDT, a news and opinion site on WWE. “I wouldn’t say it’s a big loss.”

NBCUniversal said Peacock “reviews WWE content to make sure it aligns with Peacock’s standards and practices,” as it does with other shows and movies on the platform.

“Peacock and WWE are reviewing all past content to ensure it meets our 2021 standards,” WWE said.

NBCUniversal said in January that Peacock had acquired exclusive broadcast rights to WWE Network content through a multi-year agreement.

In March, the company announced that Peacock would feature WWE fan-favorite content at launch, including all WrestleManias that went before WrestleMania 37.

The company said Peacock will continue to add WWE Network content to its library, making the entire archive available to fans.

The removal of the segments comes as other streaming services and entertainment companies have sought to give audiences context for older movies and TV shows that feature offensive content.

Disney’s streaming service includes a 12-second warning that cannot be ignored before movies like “Dumbo” and “Peter Pan” that tells viewers they will see “negative portrayals” and “abuse. inflicted on people or cultures “.

“These stereotypes were wrong then and are wrong now,” the warning warns. “Rather than removing this content, we want to recognize its harmful impact, learn from it and spark conversation to together create a more inclusive future.”

This month, Turner Classic Movies showed 18 classic movies, including “The Jazz Singer” and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” which were preceded by commentary from film experts who prepared viewers for scenes they could find. shocking or disturbing.

HBO Max initially removed “Gone with the Wind” from its streaming service, then added it again with a four-minute intro by TCM host Jacqueline Stewart, who explains the enduring cultural significance of the film at the time. even that he “denies the horrors of slavery.” as well as its legacies of racial inequalities. “

Last June, an NBC spokesperson said that four episodes of “30 Rock” that featured a blackface were pulled from circulation at the behest of Tina Fey, the show’s creator, and Robert Carlock, a executive producer and showrunner.

Mr Jeter, the WWE fan who writes about wrestling, said racist and sexist portrayals of women, blacks and other people of color have long been a part of professional wrestling.

“It has become such a part of the oversight of the product that it has become expected,” he said. “But that’s not what I watch wrestling for.”

Most fans, he said, watch wrestling because they appreciate the combination of athleticism and dramatic storytelling. Racist tropes were often a distraction from this, Mr Jeter said.

“I’m sure there are fans out there who say, ‘Why are you censoring? “, He said. “But it really doesn’t matter that they are getting rid of these stories and segments that haven’t aged really well and weren’t really good at the time.”

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Police chief and policeman evicted after racist remarks captured by body camera

A police chief and a patroller in a small town in Georgia were ousted from their positions after body camera footage was discovered in which the couple made racist comments about slavery and Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms from Atlanta.

Gene Allmond, the chief of the Hamilton, Ga. Police department, resigned on Monday, said Buddy Walker, an assistant to the mayor, Julie Brown. Patroller John Brooks was fired Tuesday after offering to resign, but did not return his ministry-provided equipment on time as promised, Walker said.

The video, which was recorded in June on a body camera Mr. Brooks carried and was uploaded by the WTVM television news channel, shows Mr. Brooks using a racial slur while making obscene comments about Ms. Bottoms and Stacey Abrams, the former Democratic candidate for governor.

The video also shows Mr. Allmond and Mr. Brooks discussing slavery. We hear Mr. Allmond say: “They gave them a house to live in, they gave them clothes to put on their backs, they gave them food to put on their table, and everything they had to. doing ”was the job.

The conversation was recorded outside the police department as the two prepared to patrol a Black Lives Matter rally in Hamilton, a city of 2,000 people about 90 miles south of Atlanta.

Mr Brooks was trying to show Mr Allmond how body cameras work, Mr Walker said on Sunday.

“I don’t know if he was stupid enough – obviously he was stupid enough – not to know that it still worked and he still had it,” Walker said. “The words came out of their mouths. There was no hesitation.

Mr Allmond and Mr Brooks could not be reached immediately for comment on Sunday.

The images were discovered on Monday by a city worker who had examined the body cameras to determine why they were not working.

Mr Brooks had told the mayor and members of city council, who asked why the police were not using body cameras, that the cameras were broken. The body cameras were discovered to be full of footage and running out of storage.

The employee alerted Mr Walker to the video and watched it Monday night with Ransom Farley, the pro tempore mayor.

Mr Walker, who is white, said of watching it with Mr Farley, who is black: “Watching the video with him, listening to someone he has known for many years – my reaction was incredibly bad. . You can imagine his reaction.

Mr Farley said on Sunday that he had to leave the room after watching the video. “It hurts,” he said, “when you think you know someone and you don’t.

Mr Walker contacted the mayor and members of city council, who met at town hall on Monday evening.

“Everyone knew what to do,” Walker said. “It wasn’t one of our proudest days.”

Saying he could resign or be fired, Mr Brooks asked to see the footage.

“He watched the whole video, then walked in and told the acting mayor he was sorry – that really wasn’t the way he was,” Walker said.

Mr. Farley said he told Mr. Brooks, “I don’t accept your apologies because you’re sorry you got caught.” You are not sorry because of what you said.

“I realize that I am black and that I am gay,” Mr. Farley added. “If you are a fanatic, if you are a racist, own it.”

The city is looking for a replacement for Mr Allmond, Mr Walker said. The city’s police force is now down to two part-time patrol officers; the county sheriff and other local police departments have offered to help, he said.

“Although we were frankly horrified, there had been suspicions” that Mr Allmond and Mr Brooks held racist views, Mr Walker said. “Even though it was horrible and disgusting, it probably wasn’t surprising.”

Mr Farley pointed out that Mr Allmond and Mr Brooks were arrested because Mr Brooks unknowingly recorded their conversation, not because someone else tried to catch them.

“Nobody told them anything,” he said. “They said to themselves.

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CBS suspends two executives accused of racist and sexist conduct

CBS has put two senior television executives on leave after a report detailing accusations they created a hostile work environment, including making derogatory remarks about female and black employees.

Executives Peter Dunn, chairman of CBS television, and David Friend, senior vice president of news for the television stations, have been placed on administrative leave pending the results of a third-party investigation, announced Monday the company in a press release. .

“CAS is committed to providing a diverse, inclusive and respectful workplace where all voices are heard, complaints are investigated and appropriate action taken when necessary,” the statement said. CBS declined further comments.

The suspensions came after the Los Angeles Times published a report on Sunday in which employees accused executives “of intimidating female executives and of blocking efforts to hire and retain black journalists.”

The newspaper reported that Mr Dunn frequently disparaged a black news anchor at KYW, the CBS station in Philadelphia, calling him “just a jive guy” and that at least four current and former CBS executives said they were intimidated by Mr. Dunn. between 2017 and 2019.

Mr. Dunn declined to comment to the Los Angeles Times on the allegations against him.

The newspaper’s report also said several black journalists had either left their posts at the Philadelphia train station or had been prevented by Mr. Dunn or Mr. Friend from being hired.

In a statement to the Los Angeles Times, Mr Friend said he and CBS stations have a solid track record of hiring and supporting women and journalists of color. “These comments I may have made about our employees or potential hires were based solely on performance or qualifications – not on anyone’s race or gender,” Friend said.

In recent years, CBS has faced numerous scandals regarding the treatment of its employees, including at the highest levels of the company. Its longtime chief executive, Les Moonves, was kicked out in 2018 after several women accused him of sexual misconduct.

Officials from the National Association of Black Journalists met with CBS officials on Sunday and called for Mr. Dunn and Mr. Friend to be fired.

The association said the questions detailed in the Times investigation were not confined to a single station and that it had heard from several CBS employees across the country.

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Black doctor dies of Covid-19 after complaining of racist treatment

She was no stranger to the challenges of getting proper medical care, said Mr. Muhammed, her 19-year-old son. She had sarcoidosis, an inflammatory disease that attacks the lungs, and was frequently treated in hospitals.

“Almost every time she went to the hospital she had to stand up for herself, fight for something in some way, shape or form, just to get basic care, proper care,” he says.

In her battle with the coronavirus at IU Health North Hospital in Carmel, Indonesia, Dr Moore wrote in an update on Facebook that she finally spoke with the hospital system’s chief medical officer, who told her assured that she would receive better care and this diversity. training would take place. She found a new doctor and her pain was better managed, she wrote.

Credit…Henry muhammed

But even as things seemed to be improving at the hospital, Dr Moore still felt that care was lacking and medical staff were becoming less responsive, according to Muhammed, who spoke to him daily. Even though she didn’t really feel like she was well enough to be released, she was eager to come home to take care of her parents, he said.

When she was battling Covid-19 in the hospital, she took the time to order him new slippers because hers had broken, Mr Muhammed said. During her last conversation with her, she told him that she was going to help him go to college.

“Even until the end, she was thinking of other people,” said Mr. Muhammed.

The hospital released her on December 7, he said, and she was slow and tired when she got home. The hospital called several times to check on her, he said, and when she didn’t answer, he dispatched an ambulance. Her mother could barely walk and was breathing heavily when the ambulance arrived. She was taken to another hospital 12 hours after being released from the previous one, she said on Facebook.

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Artists call on MoMA to remove Philip Johnson’s name, citing racist views

Philip Johnson was one of the most influential architects of the last century, a chameleon in each of his roles as New York energy broker, art collector and creator of his “Glass House”, a famous landmark of Modernist design. in Connecticut.

He also championed racist and white supremacist views in his youth. Johnson’s Nazi sympathies, for example, have been well documented and he spent the years after World War II trying to distance himself from them.

Today, a group of more than 30 prominent artists, architects and academics shed light on the most distasteful part of Johnson’s legacy, demanding in a letter posted online Nov. 27 that institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Harvard Graduate School of Design are removing the name of the architect, who died in 2005, from their spaces.

“Johnson’s architectural work has a role to play in archives and historical preservation,” wrote the Johnson Study Group, a largely anonymous group of designers and architects, in the letter. “However, the naming of titles and spaces inevitably suggests that the winner is a role model for curators, administrators, students and others who participate in these institutions.

The letter was signed by contemporary artist Xaviera Simmons; Kate Orff, landscape architect and member of MacArthur; and V. Mitch McEwen, Assistant Professor of Architecture at Princeton University, one of eight of 10 architects for an upcoming MoMA exhibit – “Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America” – slated to open on February 20 .

He cites Johnson’s “widely documented” plea for white supremacist views, his attempt to found a fascist party in Louisiana, and his failure to include the work of a single black artist or designer in the MoMA collection during his tenure there. -low. (He served in various roles for six decades.) The letter urged all institutions using his name to remove it.

“He not only nodded but added to the persistent practice of racism in the field of architecture,” the letter said, “a legacy that continues to hurt today.”

Johnson’s name appears in one of the exhibition galleries at the Museum of Modern Art, where he was the first responsible for architecture and design since 1984. His name is also included in the title of chief curator of the architecture and design of the museum.

Johnson created buildings that are widely regarded as architectural masterpieces of the 20th century, including the MoMA Sculpture Garden and the Pavilion that houses pre-Columbian art from the Dumbarton Oaks Estate in Washington. In his obituary, New York Times critic Paul Goldberger hailed him as the “godfather, fly, scholar, patron, critic, curator and cheerleader” of American architecture.

But as a youth, he openly admired Hitler’s manifesto, “Mein Kampf,” attended Nazi rallies in Germany and was investigated by the FBI for his ties to the Nazi Party. He rejected Nazism after the end of World War II.

Representatives from MoMA and Harvard did not immediately respond to requests for comment Thursday.

Ms Orff, a landscape architect and MacArthur scholar, said in an email Thursday that removing Johnson’s name from the gallery and from the post of curator would represent an important step in dismantling racism in design culture.

“Landscape architecture is catching up in its assessment of its own heritage,” Ms. Orff said. “To move forward with a more imaginative, fair and equitable culture in the fields of design, we have to take into account the numbers of the past that set the ground rules.”

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Kushner, employing racist stereotypes, wonders if black Americans ‘want to succeed’

WASHINGTON – President Trump has repeatedly bragged about what he has done for black America, highlighting his administration’s funding for black colleges and universities, the creation of so-called zones of opportunity and the criminal justice reform.

But on Monday, Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser, played into a racist stereotype by appearing to question whether black Americans “want to be successful” despite what he said Mr. Trump had done for them.

“One thing we’ve seen in a lot of the black community, which is predominantly Democrat, is that President Trump’s policies are the policies that can help people get out of the issues they complain about,” Mr. Kushner in an interview with “Fox & Friends,” the President’s favorite morning TV show. “But he can’t want them to be successful more than they want to be successful.”

In the interview, Mr Kushner said that after the May murder of George Floyd, a black man, in police custody – an event that sparked global protests against systemic racism, and which Mr Kushner called of “George Floyd situation” – many people were more concerned with what he called “signaling virtue” than with finding “solutions”.

“They would go on Instagram and cry, or they would put a slogan on their jersey or write something on a basketball court,” he said, an apparent reference to NBA players like LeBron James who joined the national protests on the issue of police brutality. . “And frankly, it did more to polarize the country than to move people forward,” he said. “You solve problems with solutions.”

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Mr Kushner’s remarks drew a scathing response from Representative Gwen Moore, a black Democrat from Wisconsin. She tweeted: “Kushner, the trust fund baby-slumlord, who got rich from the WH, pulls the silver spoon out of his mouth long enough to insert his foot with a racist trope about blacks and success.”

The Democratic National Committee has been just as tough.

“According to the Trump administration, when African Americans denounce policies that have led to historic unemployment for black families, an explosion of racial inequalities and wealth gaps, and an unchecked global pandemic that has claimed the lives of over 45,000 black Americans, that means we just don’t want to do bad enough, ”said Brandon Gassaway, the committee’s national press secretary. “This dismissive approach to the issues that preoccupy black voters is indicative of Trump’s callousness and contempt for black lives.

Kayleigh McEnany, the White House press secretary, defended Mr Kushner saying his remarks were taken out of context. She accused anonymous “Internet trolls” of attempting to “distract from President Trump’s undeniable record of achievement for the black community.”

Mr. Trump’s frequent references to what he claims to have done for black America have often been accompanied by one of the most blatantly false claims he has made since joining the White House: that he did more for black Americans than any president with the possible exception of Abraham Lincoln.

In his debate Thursday night, his Democratic opponent, Joseph R. Biden Jr., scoffed at the president’s claim. “Abraham Lincoln is here one of the most racist presidents we have had in modern history,” he said, looking at Mr. Trump. “He pours oil on every racist fire. Each of them. “

And Mr. Trump is exaggerating his successes.

“The idea that Trump has done something great, or different, with regard to HBCUs defies logic,” said Leah Wright Rigueur, professor of public policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School, referring to colleges and historically black universities. “It’s virtually identical to what every president has done since Ronald Reagan. The executive order they issued in 2017 used exactly the same language as Barack Obama. “

Mr Trump was praised for signing a criminal justice overhaul bill – with the warning that the bipartisan coalition of actors, including billionaire brothers Koch, who backed the move, was firmly in place before Mr. Trump took an interest in the matter. .

And the opportunity zone tax break consistently cited by Mr Trump has spurred relatively little job creation while disproportionately aiding high-profit real estate projects, according to an Urban Institute study released this summer. .

A recent CBS News poll found that 85% of registered black voters believed that as president Mr. Trump “favors whites.” About 79% of those voters said he was “working against” black people.

But Mr Kushner said in the interview that he had heard state directors of the Trump campaign across the country talk about a “wave of support in the black community because they realize that all the different bad things the media and Democrats have said about President Trump are not true.

Senior campaign officials said their goal was to win at least 10 percent of black voters by November, and that an increase in support for the president among black voters by just two percentage points could sway the election. In 2016, Mr. Trump won just 8% of black voters.

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Video: ‘We saw this pattern’: Harris calls Trump racist

“On the one hand you have Joe Biden, who has enough knowledge and courage to use the term and utter those words Black Lives Matter. On the other side, you have Donald Trump, who refuses and will never say Black Lives Matter, and who then has the nerve to present himself on this stage of the debate during the last debate in front of 70 million Americans, and would not condemn white supremacists. And you know, people asked me, they say, “ Well, Senator Harris – by the way, the senator is not on my birth certificate, it’s Kamala – and they say, well, is you say, do you think he a racist? Yes. Yes. Because you see, it’s not like it’s something random. We have seen this model. Let us return to questioning the legitimacy of Barack Obama. Back in Charlottesville, as people peacefully protested racial injustice in America, a woman was killed. And on the other side you had a bunch of neo-Nazis, carrying swastikas, carrying tiki torches, insulting and throwing anti-Semitic and racist slurs, and Donald Trump said, ‘Well, there are good people on both sides. “It doesn’t reflect who we think we are as a nation. We need a president who recognizes systemic racism, who recognizes America’s history, and who uses that tyrant chair and microphone in a way that speaks the truth with the intention of attacking inequalities and bring our country together.

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