Beyonce Makes The World Stop -- Again -- With Her New 'Renaissance' Album
“REVOLT BLACK NEWS Weekly” aired on Friday (July 29) to discuss the case of Emmett Till, America’s cash bail system and Beyoncé’s long-awaited studio album, Renaissance.
REVOLT Special Correspondent Rochelle Ritchie hosted the episode, titled “Justice For Emmett Till And Cash Bail System Overhaul.” She was joined by attorney Malik Zulu Shabazz, political activist Jericho Green, digital creator Amber McChery, entrepreneur Glenn E. Martin and political activist Oliver Mac. REVOLT Entertainment Correspondent Kennedy Rue McCullough also brought viewers the latest in celebrity news, during which she interviewed Keke Palmer, as well as Omarion about his upcoming docuseries, “Omega: The Gift & The Curse.”
Ritchie opened the show by discussing the case of Emmett Till and assessing whether the last surviving perpetrator in the teen’s death will be brought to justice. On Aug. 28, 1955, 14-year-old Till was abducted from his relative’s Mississippi residence, murdered, and then disposed of in a river after allegedly whistling at Carolyn Bryant Donham.
Donham’s then-husband, Roy Bryant, and his brother, J.W. Milam, were charged with Till’s death, however an all-white jury acquitted them of any wrongdoing. The two men later admitted to the crime but due to the Fifth Amendment, they could not be retried.
In 2017, Duke University professor Timothy B. Tyson published “The Blood of Emmett Till,” which included a quote of Donham admitting the allegations she made against Till were not true. On Dec. 6, 2021, the Department of Justice closed Till’s case, citing there was not enough evidence to prove Donham recanted her story.
Civil & human rights attorney Jaribu Hill told REVOLT, “Here is someone who for 67 years has alluded and evaded justice. No one is allowed to do that except for those who have white skin privilege.”
In June, an unserved arrest warrant for the then-Mrs. Bryant was discovered in the basement of a Mississippi courthouse dated for Aug. 29, 1955, the Associated Press reported. Till’s family demanded officials use the arrest warrant to bring her to justice. However, last month the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office said it had no plans to prosecute Donham and that there was not new evidence to support reopening the case.
Hill insisted, “If we can get justice for Emmett Till, we can get justice for all of those who have been slaughtered because of white supremacy.” Ritchie held a roundtable discussion with Green, Shabazz and McChery to further examine Till’s case. Green told Ritchie that justice will not be served by arresting Donham.
“This is one of the most horrible things to happen in the United States of America. This is an irremovable stain on the history of America. But I don’t think that any justice can be served through this woman being arrested,” he declared. “Her age isn’t the issue, but the woman is suffering from dementia. So, would she even be able to stand trial to face punishment? Would she even be aware of what’s going on?”
However, Shabazz believes no one should extend “sympathy” towards Donham due to her age. “No one had a problem with dragging off 83-year-old Bill Cosby and hauling him off to jail for the rest of his life. Only the appeals process freed him,” he claimed. “We don’t have any sympathy for Carol Bryant. I don’t think we should be acting as her defense attorneys, trying to put defenses up for her after she’s involved in one of the greatest murders of all time.”
Switching gears, Ritchie turned her attention to America’s cash bail system, which disproportionately impacts Black Americans. In 2021, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a bill into law that would eliminate cash bail in the state by the end of 2023. During a press conference, Pritzker announced that this one-of-a-kind bill marks “a transformative step forward in Illinois’ effort to lead the country in dismantling systemic racism.”
Ritchie held a discussion with Martin and Mac to dig deeper into America’s cash bail system. Martin says that “everything” is wrong with it.” “Our Cash bail system essentially undermines justice and fairness, and it disproportionately harms Black and poor people,” he explains. “It really is the monetization of misery. As an entrepreneur I understand the importance of people being able to engage and make money in a capitalist society. At the same time, I know I draw the line where you’re profiting off of the punishment of other people.”
On the contrary, Mac told Ritchie that cash bail is not an issue the Black community should “focus on.” “Out of the list of all the issues that plague the Black community, I wouldn’t even rank it within the top 40. If the Black community would focus more on keeping our people out of that system rather than focused on changing that system, I think we could make a lot more headway,” he asserted.
Later in the show, McCullough hosted her “Entertainment Remix” segment, during which she spotlighted Beyoncé’s latest album Renaissance and Omarion’s upcoming docuseries “Omega: The Gift & The Curse.” The “Ring the Alarm” singer released her seventh studio album on July 29, featuring “Break My Soul” and 15 other disco and house music-themed songs. During an interview with REVOLT, Keke Palmer said she sees Beyoncé as an inspiration.
“A lot of people don’t want to accept the reality of what longevity really means. Everything doesn’t just pop off like that. It takes time,” she said of Beyoncé’s career. “This is a marathon, sweetheart, not a race. She’s somebody that has continuously showed us that just when you think she’s finished, she’s like, ‘Oh no, the fat lady ain’t singing yet.’”
McCullough also spoke with Omarion about his upcoming production, which will showcase dramatic moments that unfolded between him and his B2K group members during their 2019 reunion tour. “I think in the end, they will appreciate it. I’ve never addressed it in this way,” he expressed.
Watch a quick clip from this week’s episode up top. Plus, be sure to catch the next installment of “REVOLT BLACK NEWS Weekly” on Friday, Aug. 5, 2022 at 5 p.m. ET on REVOLT’s app.