For many legal and economic analysts at the center of the industry, the virtual lack of meaningful regulations governing Big Tech has been a cause of concern for years. From Microsoft and Google to Facebook and its many assets, Silicon Valley has seemingly operated outside the bounds of federal anti-trust laws since the birth of social media platforms as we know them. Those charged with regulating mergers and acquisitions within the context of preserving a competitive economy have given a wide berth to Big Tech companies, imposing fines that amounted to a gentle wag of the finger against some of the wealthiest corporations in the world. It is unclear whether this hesitancy is spurred by willful negligence or an astonishing lack of appreciation on the Federal government’s part regarding the sheer strength of power and influence wielded by Big Tech companies across all sectors of society, and around the world.

The anti-trust lawsuits filed against Facebook this week are the first of its kind since 1998 when Microsoft found itself in the crosshairs of a similar case brought by the FTC. Yet, even as a singular economic power in technology, Microsoft’s influence was restricted to the economic sector. Facebook, on the other hand, has faced countless accusations over the years of unethical and dangerous practices that have resulted in real-time, quantifiable consequences impacting the course of politics, social justice, and the rise of extremist and nationalist agendas the world over.

Four years after the presidential U.S elections in 2016, there have been numerous investigations detailing Russian interference through misinformation campaigns run on Facebook. The tech firm has always insisted that they were not complicit yet reports compiled through data collected from internal reports and data analysis clearly shows that the Facebook’s top executives were fully aware that the platform’s algorithms were evolving divisive and polarizing engagement in an effort to attract user attention and increase time on the social media platform.

Also in 2016, Facebook’s dominance as a news source in Myanmar resulted in extremist violence targeting the Rohingya and triggering a humanitarian crisis in the region that left hundreds of thousands displaced. Faced with having to take account by US Senate Committees and foreign governments, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg admitted that the platform had in essence been weaponized against the Rohingya. In a now familiar refrain, he blamed its algorithms and claimed ignorance, promising yet again to create more stringent checks and balances in an effort to provide a more informed user-experience, and filter out hate-based groups on the platform.

Only last week, Amnesty International brought our attention to a new iteration of the danger of Facebook. Perhaps in an effort to absolve itself of complicity in human rights abuses, early last year Facebook announced it would defer to local laws in countries around the world. In so doing the platform now aids government cyber-trolls and henchmen in identifying and tracking down political dissidents and activists, as was the case in Vietnam just last week where 70 online activists were arrested and imprisoned for varying acts of peaceful dissent.

While the anti-trust lawsuits are a step in the right direction in holding tech giants accountable, they don’t go nearly far enough. With the advent and accelerated development of psychographic technology, the problem with Facebook and tech companies that capitalize on influencing human behavior is only going to get worse. And governments around the world had better take note by crafting clear and decisive legislation and penalties that shackle the ambitions of any globally monopolized technological power.

Music: Path to African American Success Stories

Music: Path to African American Success Stories

By Jessie Prysock

Defining the African American impact on American music is a near-impossible task. African American influences are so essential to American music that one could argue that there would be no American music without them. Historically, we can trace the evolution of African American music to the Transatlantic Slave Trade, when the forced migration of thousands of Africans ended in the American colonies, each man, woman, and child carrying the rich and melodious heritage of African song and dance. It was these sounds of Africa that echoed through the plantations of their new home, consoling and strengthening them in the face of their adversity, evolving as they passed from one to another for generations to come.

Many of the musical instruments that accompanied early African American music, like the banjo and the drums, have their predecessors in the traditional instruments of African music. During the Reconstruction and Jim Crow era, African American music truly began to evolve beyond its African origins, spurred by European influences and the broader Americas. African American musicians with the freedom to create and perform beyond the borders of their enslavement took to the stage. A musical heritage true to the journey and culture of African Americans began to take shape. The earliest rendition of musical genres attributed to African American culture is the blues.

Pioneered by the great Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith, the Blues are a musical genre that spawned countless variations for decades to come, from the Memphis Blues to the Mississippi Blues, country blues to electric blues. Following close on the heels of the blues was jazz, a sound that was big and bold as the blues were as personal and intimate. Characterized by big bands replete with a huge array of instruments, jazz was the African American answer to the European opera. And like the blues, jazz left room for a slew of variations that gave birth to the indisputable greats that crossed color lines and international borders cementing African American musical contributions as the gold standard in the industry; names like Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway, Dizzie Gillespie, and Count Basie.

In modern times, African American music continues to dominate the global music industry. Rap and hip hop emerged almost simultaneously and immediately took the world by storm. Rap sprung from inner-city neighborhoods in a gritty and poetic verse that struck back at the systems of social and economic oppression bearing down on African American neighborhoods across the country, was quickly adopted around the world.

We’ll bring you the conclusion to this report next week (Saturday, December 19th.2020).

Author of a new memoir discusses her life in public safety

Guest: Melissa McFadden (Author of the book, “Walking the Thin Black Line: Confronting Racism in the Columbus Division of Police)

Assistant Producer: Okon Ekpenyong, News Editor: Nuwayla Mazrui-Helmrich – News Producer: Marcel Adig – News Anchors: Nuwayla Mazrui-Helmrich & Ernest Kanjo. We do not own rights to songs played on the station

Dr. Hassan Tetteh, MD (Thoracic and Cardiac Surgeon) on Covid-19 Vaccine

Guest: Dr. Hassan Tetteh, MD (Specializes in Clinical Informatics, Thoracic and Cardiac Surgery)
Assistant News Producer Okon Ekpenyong – News Editor: Nuwayla Mazrui-Helmrich – News Producer: Marcel Adig – News Anchors: Nuwayla Mazrui-Helmrich & Ernest Kanjo. We do not own rights to songs played on the station


One of the first tasks undertaken by any newly elected president is to consider his or her appointments for the new administration’s Cabinet. And that’s no different for President-Elect Joe Biden. Looking back at the Democratic challenger’s campaign, it’s no secret that Biden’s campaign was fraught with questions regarding his political record on the African American community. Throughout his campaign and the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement, many accused Biden of building his career on the betrayal of Black voters. His record clearly shows, for example, that he was the leading liberal opponent to busing in the 1970s, and in the 1980s and 90s was one of the leading architects of mass incarceration.

Yet, to his credit, since his triumph in the presidential election, Biden has already earned praise from progressives for tapping a selection of race experts and academics to fill economic positions on his transition team. With an apparent focus on bridging the racial wealth gap between Black and white Americans in the country, the new hires are reportedly working to help shape his policies on small-business lending, housing, and health.

The racial wealth gap is a key indicator in the overbearing presence and persistence of institutional racism in America. The average Black family holds only 13% of the wealth of the average white family; according to the Federal Reserve, in 2019, Black families owned a median wealth of $24,100, compared to the median wealth of $188,200 owned by white families. And with more and more data documenting the aggravated impact on Black businesses resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic this year, it seems this disparity is set to increase.

Leading President-Elect Biden’s transitional economic team is Mehrsa Baradaran, author of the book The Color of Money, which many tout as the leading resource on race-based economic disparities in the country. Baradaran is an outspoken proponent of slavery reparations. In her book, Baradaran argues that closing the racial wealth gap begins with “acknowledging past wrongs and providing compensation for damages both as a means of closing the wealth gap and correcting white supremacy”. She was also a consultant on this issue for several other democratic candidates in the 2020 elections, including Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

Some of the other members of Biden’s landing team that have prompted approval and excitement from progressives include Don Graves, who previously worked for the Obama administration and was the Head of Corporate Responsibility for KeyBank, and Tene Dolphin, the first Executive Director for the Greater Washington Black Chamber of Commerce.

It was the hope of many on the left that these picks signaled the Biden’s administration’s commitment to addressing systemic racism in the country by acknowledging that racism has been embedded into policy and taking the necessary measures to enforce parity. That is, until earlier this week, when it was reported that Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel was under consideration for a Cabinet post.

In 2016, reports showed that the two-term Mayor had played an active and willful part in the cover-up of Laquan McDonald’s murder at the hands of Chicago police in 2014. Laquan McDonald, a 17-year-old boy, was shot in the back 16 times while walking away from police. And in 2017, police body cam footage was publicly released and clearly showed that McDonald had posed no immediate threat to the police. In a city still grappling with generations of systemic racism and police brutality, the public outrage effectively ended Emmanuel’s political career in Chicago.

In light of this legacy, it is no surprise that progressives are outraged by Biden’s apparent pivot from his commitment to the African American community, and has left many wondering if Biden’s administration will reflect the policies and values championed by his transitional team, or if Black voters, who are credited with his presidential win, must ready themselves for yet another Biden betrayal.