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Movie review: ‘Beyond the Lights’

Beyond the Lights

Quick Rihanna, check to see if someone stole your diary. This ode to young Black chanteuses fighting personal demons feels like the story of her life. But in fact, it’s the brainchild of writer/director Gina Prince-Bythewood (“Love & Basketball”), who knows her way around a romantic drama.

Noni (Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Belle), a singer, has been driven to superstardom by her overbearing stage mother Macy Jean (Minnie Driver), who must have taken lessons in emotional abuse from Michael Jackson’s dad. As a kid, Macy shamed her daughter when she came in second at talent contests. She’d make her throw the runner-up trophy away. Noni, would retreat, put an emotional wall up around herself and sing her favorite song, “Blackbird,” the tortured-soul Nina Simone version.

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Employment outlook for African-American males improving

WASHINGTON — Last month’s African-American unemployment rate (10.9 percent) was more than twice the white unemployment rate (4.8 percent), but when it comes to key measures in the labor market, African Americans and Latinos have experienced greater gains than whites over the past year, according to a recent report by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).

Valerie Wilson, the director of the Program on Race, Ethnicity, and the Economy at EPI, a nonpartisan think tank working to improve economic conditions for low- and middle-income families, said that not only have the unemployment rates for people of color declined faster than the jobless rate for whites over the last year, the labor force participation, the measure of people that have jobs or currently looking for work, has also increased, pulling more people into the labor market.

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African-American military leaders uphold a proud tradition of service


As the nation pauses this Veteran’s Day to honor past and present members of our fighting forces, a brief review of the long list of African-American men and women in the military reveals faith in country, courage within and outside of battle, and above all personal strength and spiritual conviction.

The list of these African-American military leaders has not always been a staple of high school history courses. Yet, the following individuals past and present are among those that have been an inspiration to Black America for more than a century:

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Roundup: News briefs


Shelby County officials warn of temperature drop

 (AP) — Emergency officials in Shelby County are advising residents to take precautions ahead of a significant drop in temperatures this week.

National Weather Service forecasters in Memphis say temperatures are expected to fall into the 40s on Tuesday afternoon, then drop into the 30s on Tuesday night.

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