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Opinion

‘Mama, what would I do without you?’

‘Mama, what would I  do without you?’

As young as 5 years old, Twan Woods would wake up at night and hear his mother having a seizure. He would know exactly what to do. He would run into her bedroom, hold her, put a cold rag in her mouth, comfort her and keep her from falling until it was over, he recalls.

"My Mom, she's a sick lady. She's like, handicapped, she's been like that all her life," said the 37-year-old who grew up in Ward 8, a crime-ridden section of South East Washington, D.C.

Despite the hardships, his mother, whom he identified as Francine Ward, raised him and his younger brother the best she could – with love and wisdom.

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  • Written by Hazel Trice Edney and Akua Aboagye

Too many too comfortable being overweight and oversized

Too many too comfortable being overweight and oversized

CHEF TIMOTHY: Losing weight is a constant battle some people find difficult to win. It's a problem that affects tens of thousands of people who are on the verge of becoming obese or are already too heavy and in jeopardy of becoming seriously ill.

So, are you in a battle with your weight?

Before I go any further, let me give kudos to BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee for addressing the obesity problem in Memphis and the Mid-South through its Healthy Church Challenge 100-day weight loss competition. From what I understand, hundreds have taken the challenge to stay healthy and physically fit.

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We can't even laugh at a gangsta goat?

We can't even laugh at a gangsta goat?

I went online this morning to see the Mountain Dew ad -- the one some are calling the most racist in history -- expecting to see some really offensive stuff. Instead, I saw some really silly stuff.

The goat's funny.

The names of some of the black men in the lineup are hilarious.

The premise: ridiculous.

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  • Written by LZ Granderson/CNN

Racist Mountain Dew ad: Everyone involved should have known better

Racist Mountain Dew ad: Everyone involved should have known better

In a piece for Clutch magazine, Britni Danielle says that Tyler the Creator's online commercial – in which a battered white woman has to pick a suspect out of a lineup consisting of black men and a goat – peddles stereotypes that black men have been fighting for years.

Here's a sampling of Danielle's commentary:

Dr. Boyce Watkins called the spot, "arguably the most racist commercial in history," and the Daily Kos criticized it for being, "flagrantly racist."

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Parenting with purpose offers lifetime benefits for children

Parenting with purpose offers lifetime benefits for children

When I was a little girl my parents told me that I could be anything that I wanted to be.

By the time I entered the third grade, I knew without a doubt that I wanted to become a writer. My Mom says there was a short-lived phase when I would only communicate through writing.

My Mom and Dad nurtured my early, yet perplexing interest in words and non-verbal communication (unless my behavior became disruptive). They provided an endless supply of books and diaries that were used as learning tools to improve literacy skills; to discover the world; to express myself creatively; and to vent my childhood frustrations and desires – all from the comfort of my bedroom.

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‘A Social TKO’ & the proper way to fight Life back

‘A Social TKO’ & the proper way to fight Life back

(Kelvin Cowans, aka Six-Four, is an author/writer and Memphis-area mentor. He spoke recently to about 20 male youths at Southwest Prep Academy, where he was invited by Don Thomas, director of the Mentor Program.)

Definition of technical knockout: the termination of a boxing match when a boxer is unable or is declared by the referee to be unable (as because of injuries) to continue the fight – called also TKO. Source: Merriam Webster

The Talk

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  • Written by Kelvin Cowans

Eat your fresh fruits & veggies and take the bite out of cancer

Eat your fresh fruits & veggies and take the bite out of cancer

CHEF TIMOTHY: I recently had a sobering encounter with a widow whose 40-year-old husband had died from prostate cancer. It was more proof telling me something that I already knew: cancer is a health hazard that continues to wreak havoc in our society.

I am honoring this grief-stricken widow's wish to remain anonymous. Her name is not important. The circumstances, however, are because they just might help someone avoid dying prematurely.

The widow was feeling the weight of a painful uncertainty. She wondered whether her late husband still would be alive if he had taken his health more seriously.

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