TNS Weekly Recap: 8/30-9/3/21

This week the team at The North Star covered the hurricanes that ravaged throughout the U.S., the campaign to save the life of Marvin Guy and more!

Hey Everybody,

I hope you all are doing well in what has been a brutal week for much of the country. As you all know, we are at the beginning of hurricane season, and Hurricane Ida caused severe damage to much of Louisiana earlier in the week before traveling up the east coast to wreak havoc in New York, New Jersey and surrounding areas. In an episode of The Breakdown this week I get into the racial implications of climate change, and the ways these major storms impact everyone but do double the amount of harm to communities of color.

This week we also looked at a posthumous pardon granted to seven Black men in Virginia who were executed seven decades ago, the indictment of former Georgia district attorney, Jackie Johnson, the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on abortion and I unpack the urgency of the case of Marvin Guy who has been held in a Texas county jail for 8 years who we are desperately working to free.

There’s so much going on as we are beginning the month of September. Our team at The North Star aim to do our best to give you stories of extreme consequence to marginalized communities. Some will be news you’ve heard and some will be news we break to you. In either case, we will deliver it with the nuance, color and liberation angle you’ve come to expect from us.

If you are not already a member at The North Star, please consider subscribing. We are able to do our work with the support of our members. Period. For those who have been here, I love and am thankful for you. For those who have yet to join us as members, I invite you to do so.

Your friend and brother,



On Hurricane Ida and Watching Your Home Being Ravaged from Afar by Donney Rose

I felt like a useless spectator to all of them. Like I had suddenly become just another outside voice commentating on the perils of a storm surge that I was totally void of danger from. I inquired about ways I could help but knew from countless experiences that when you are caught in the throes of a violent weather event such as a Category 4 hurricane, there’s not much anyone outside of your surroundings can do besides sending you prayers and well-wishes.

Shopping While Black: How A Trip to Walmart Turned Traumatic For Two Black Men by Kendi King

To watch someone you love be arrested is to watch them be reduced to a powerless figure controlled by the whims of another. It is fear in its rawest form. Considering that the U.S. currently has the largest prison population in the history of the world, the chances of being arrested or witnessing the arrest of someone you know are fairly high, especially for Black people.

Pardons in the Afterlife: The "Justice" Given to the Martinville Seven by Donney Rose

Prior to the execution of the Martinville Seven, Virginia had executed 38 people for the crime of rape between 1908 and 1951. Every single person executed was Black. By 1977, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that rape was no longer a crime eligible for death. Governor Northam did not proclaim the pardons were an admission of innocence.

The Ghost of James Baldwin: Racial Conservatism, Critical Race Theory, and the Fear of a Black Idea by Nicholas Mitchell

Discrediting African American philosophy has been a particular preoccupation of the racially conservative American intellectual world since the beginning of the Civil Rights revolution in the 1950s, which forced the issue of race to the forefront of American popular culture. The reason for discrediting a philosophy is always to mute its critiques so that a response is unnecessary.

The House that Airbnb Built Seems More for Show than for Shelter by Branden Janese

I’m not suggesting that Airbnb shouldn’t help shelter Afghan refugees. Hell, I’m not even suggesting that Airbnb help shelter homeless Americans before they lend help to Afghan refugees. What I am suggesting is that Airbnb hosts these twenty thousand Afghan refugees in another country. Maybe one where their support won’t be considered a slap in the face.

When Exercising White Privilege and Nepotism Goes Wrong by Donney Rose

Johnson was likely of the belief that rural small town backdoor dealings would afford her the ability to do a solid for her friend Greg McMichael. What she did not anticipate was Ahmaud’s death becoming a global topic, prompting advocacy from all over and spearheading the #RunWithMaud movement. Her indictment is most likely karma for years of nepotism, abuse of power and weaponized white privilege in the legal system. There is nothing new about someone involving themselves in this degree of misconduct. She just got caught up.

Understanding the Unprecedented Texas Abortion Ban & Its Consequences For People of Color by Kendi King

For decades, the racial disparity of abortion rates between Black and Hispanic people versus white people has been wide and only continues to grow. This is for many reasons, some of them being a lack of access to contraceptives in communities populated by POC, as well as a lack of sex education in these communities of color.

While anti-abortion advocates argue over the ethics of terminating unwanted pregnancies, they hardly seem to consider the ethics of bringing an unwanted child into the world.


The Breakdown with Shaun King: Ep. 509 - Tomorrow we are launching a campaign to save a Black man's life (August 30, 2021)

I need your help, but most of all, he's going to need your help. And together we can do some of the most important work of our lives.

The Breakdown with Shaun King: Ep. 510 - Free Marvin Guy
(August 31, 2021)

Since before the Black Lives Matter Movement started, an innocent Black man named Marvin Guy has been languishing in a local county jail without ever going to trial and without ever being convicted of a crime. It's almost been 8 years. This is an abomination. Today, on Marvin's behalf, I am asking for your help.

The Breakdown with Shaun King: Ep. 511 - GoFundMe publicly confirms I've never stolen from anyone on their website
(September 1, 2021)

It's foolish that it came to this, but it was necessary nonetheless. Let me unpack and explain it.

The Breakdown with Shaun King: Ep. 512 - Climate change is real and it's impacting us right here, right now. (September 2, 2021)

After Hurricane Ida devastated Louisiana, it just hit us hard here in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania - with entire communities flooded, tornadoes everywhere, roads and trains shut down, and more. Nearly a dozen people died overnight. Let me unpack and explain what's really going on.

The Breakdown with Shaun King: Ep. 513 - Something just happened in Georgia that almost NEVER happens when we fight for justice (September 3, 2021)

Yesterday Jackie Johnson, the longtime DA of Glynn County, deep in Georgia, was charged with multiple crimes for her role in the murder and coverup of Ahmaud Arbery. Let me tell you why this matters so much.

#InTheseTweets | 76th Edition

“In These Tweets” is The North Star’s weekly cultural dive into trending topics on Twitter impacting our community, hosted by TNS Chief Content Editor, Donney Rose. This week, Donney looks at the devastation of Hurricane Ida in south Louisiana, the hashtag #PandemicPaul dedicated to Senator Rand Paul and the age of stupidity"

We are outchea in the tweets!

This Week’s Freedom Song

The North Star will be sending out a weekly song of inspiration, hope and liberation from our These Songs of Freedom playlist. This week’s freedom song is “Forever” by Sa-Roc. Listen here on Spotify or here on Apple Music.