Culture

TV Special “Graduate Together” Gave The Class Of 2020 A Special Send-Off

Events across the world have been canceled because of Covid-19. This includes concerts, music festivals, Pride parades, and major sporting events. Yet, for high school seniors, their high school will end without the same traditions that many have enjoyed like prom and graduation.

LeBron James celebrated the graduating class of 2020 on a special night on television.

“You should’ve had a real graduation, I know. You should’ve had an incredible senior year, I know that as well. But you made a sacrifice, and you did it to keep your community safe and healthy,” James said during the broadcast.

James continued: “Our school are our safety net. Our people build our communities. To the class of 2020, as you celebrate tonight, do not forget your safety net. Every teacher, every coach, every pastor, they along with your friends and family got you to this moment. And now, it’s time to go to a new place.”

The special was filled with celebrities and public figures offering students words of encouragement as they close this chapter of their lives.

“Congratulations to everyone graduating,” Bad Bunny told the class of 2020 in Spanish. “I know that we are going through a very difficult and strong time for use, but we have to stay strong and don’t forget to be thankful and smile, even though I know that sometimes we don’t even want to smile. We have to look for a way to do it and stay positive.”

The musician added: “Work hard on everything that you set out to do, on all your goals, but remember that it doesn’t matter what we achieve. The most important thing is to respect each other. It’s respect and the values that we put into practice day to day that say who you are. They are what define us as people. Success is not measured in money. Success, to me, is the experiences and memories that we carry in our hearts forever.”

Zendaya gave the students, and teachers, a special message for the commencement ceremony.

The actress gave a special shoutout at the beginning of her speech to teachers. Zendaya noted that her mother is a teacher so she has first-hand knowledge of how hard teachers are working during this time. Hosting classes via Zoom with children is not the easiest way to teach in the world.

Zendaya then turned her talk to the graduating seniors. While the viral outbreak has interrupted the lives of billions of people, graduation is not the only defining moment of being a high school senior. Instead, Zendaya tries to remind the graduating class of 2020 that it is a series of life events that define your senior year. There is so much that people go through from the time they start school to the time they finish that truly define them and their experience. One moment, while memorable, is not the only thing that makes senior year the experience it is.

The class of 2020 was treated to a special shoutout from President Barack Obama.

Pres. Obama started by giving the students the same tired and true line. He highlighted how the adults that are making decisions are not all-knowing and are in fact learning as they go. This is something that we have all heard when we were younger but, for some reason, coming from Pres. Obama, it sounds empowering and calming. It really reminded people of what a president should sound like when addressing the American public.

Pres. Obama did call on the students to act differently then they had seen from some people in power. Specifically, Pres. Obama wanted to let students know that there was a right and a wrong way to respond to major events.

“Doing what feels good, what’s convenient, what’s easy — that’s how little kids think,” Pres. Obama told the seniors. He added. “Unfortunately, a lot of so-called grown-ups, including some with fancy titles and important jobs, still think that way — which is why things are so screwed up.”

The special ended with a performance from the Jonas Brothers and Karol G.

“Taping our performance was amazing to me,” Karol G told Billboard about her performance. “I enjoyed it as if it were my own graduation. To have the opportunity to reach so many people, give them a good time despite all we’re going through, to celebrate with them this special date … It meant a lot to me.”

READ: Here’s To The Latina Graduates of 2020!

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This Video Of A Woman Doing ASL To Cardi B’s ‘WAP’ Is Too Lit

Fierce

This Video Of A Woman Doing ASL To Cardi B’s ‘WAP’ Is Too Lit

@Freelove19xx/ Twitter

Just when you thought the hype around Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s “WAP” might be trickling down, a recent video of a deaf woman translating the lyrics has gone viral.

After dropping her big track collaboration with Megan Thee Stallion, Dominican/Trinidadian rapper Cardi B has had just about everybody repeating the beloved lines of the song over and over again. But the most important rendition of the big hit is one done by a woman who does ASL and performs to “WAP” like a boss.

The now-viral clip is beyond entertaining and inspiring to watch. Mostly because the woman in the video not only has the MOVES she also has the lyrics on lock.

A 25-year old TikTok and Twitter user by the name of Raven Sutton went viral for her recent “WAP” ASL cover.

Known on the social platforms as @Freelove19xx, she went viral over the weekend after she recorded herself passionately repeating the lyrics to “WAP” in ASL while channeling the slick and sexy vibe of the Cardi B x Megan Thee Stallion hit. In the video, the TikTok user can be seen interpreting each line of the WAP lyrics while expertly swaying her hips and bopping to the music.

In the comments, users questioned how @Freelove19xx was able to keep up with the rhythm of the music without hearing, she revealed that she has a “speaker that vibrates my whole house lmao. I can feel the music.”

Speaking to Fierce by mitú Sutton explained “What I loved most about the WAP song is that Cardi B and Megan are both successful women that aren’t afraid to speak their truth. They do not let other people’s expectations define them.”

Sutton who was born deaf after the deaf gene was passed down to her by her father told us that ASL is her native language and that she hopes her video shows nondeaf people that deaf people can do just as much as they can. “It’s a common assumption that Deaf people can’t do certain things because we can’t hear. Things like talking, dancing, listening to music etc,” she explained. “Truth is, us Deaf people enjoy the same things as everyone else. We ask to be included and accommodated so that the things we enjoy do not become a burden. Examples of accommodations are providing ASL interpreters, caption your videos, and learn ASL. Accessibility is important. Let’s all put in the work together.”

Sutton shared that people can learn basic ASL tools at Gallaudet University.

Sutton says that since post her video she’s noticed that “people are recognizing that there are a lot of Deaf Talent and creators out there. People are wanting to learn ASL. This is a great thing and I hope the recognition and fire energy continues.”

Users inspired by the tweet were quick to celebrate @Freelove19xx for her post.

“A lot of times the variations of a sign are used for a song’s chorus so that it doesn’t seem too repetitive or redundant. It’s a wholeass art, as a hearing person that knows ASL, it’s amazing to see EVERY DAMN TIME lol,” one user commented.

“I absolutely love this. I’ve taken deaf studies & ASL classes & trying to learn 1 sign a week since then. hopefully, I can be signing like u someday!” another user pointed out. “Its hard w no one to practice w but i hope to gain more friends in the deaf community to help me w that. Anyway, you did amazing!”

“Ahhhhh I have no words!!” an adoring commenter replied. “This is grounds for a marriage proposal.”

Thanks to the clip, fans are already demanding the obvious:

“Has anyone started a petition asking Cardi to have Bluejay in her next video yet?” one user asked.

As of this publication, @Freelove19xx has yet to respond to mitú’s request for comment.

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Tiger King’s Carole Baskin Just Shaded Cardi B For Using ‘Big Cat Pimps’ For ‘WAP’ Video —”people won’t even see the cats because it is so sexually explicit”

Entertainment

Tiger King’s Carole Baskin Just Shaded Cardi B For Using ‘Big Cat Pimps’ For ‘WAP’ Video —”people won’t even see the cats because it is so sexually explicit”

WMG

Just about everyone has something to say about Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s steamy “WAP” music video. The project, which dropped last week, has gained all kinds of attention and feelings. From thoughts about Kylie Jenner’s appearance to viewpoints on the outfits, just about everyone has drawn their own conclusions about “WAP”. We just weren’t expecting “Tiger King” star Carole Baskin to be one of them.

That’s right Tiger King’s Carole Baskin has seen “WAP” and the big-cat rights activist and CEO of Big Cat Rescue ain’t happy.

When it comes to the trending music video, you can color Baskin unimpressed.

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The video, which features cameos from Kylie Jenner, Normani, Rubi Rose, Sukihana, Rosalía, and Mulatto, has a big cat and a few snakes to boot.

“My guess is that most people won’t even see the photoshopped cats in the scenes because the rest of it is so sexually explicit,” Baskin said of the video in a statement to Entertainment Weekly. “I was happy to see that it does appear to all be photoshopped. It didn’t look like the cats were really in the rooms with the singers.”

Despite this, Baskin says she’s not happy with Cardi or Megan’s decision to feature wild animals.

WMG

A big cat is featured in the “WAP” music video alongside Kylie Jenner as she walks down a long hallway and notices it watching her from behind an open door.

“That being said, you have to pose a wildcat in front of a green screen to get that image and that doesn’t happen in the wild,” Baskin explained. “It can happen in sanctuaries like ours where cats have plenty of room to avoid a green screen (or would shred it if offered access and could die from ingesting it).”

Baskin went onto point out that they “probably dealt with one of the big cat pimps, probably even one of the ones shown in Tiger King, Murder, Mayhem and Madness, who make a living from beating, shocking and starving cats to make them stand on cue in front of a green screen in a studio. That’s never good for the cat.”

But Baskin says her big concern is that the WAP video will encourage other artists to use big cats in their own work.

Netflix

“That makes every follower of these artists, who doesn’t know better, want to imitate by doing the same,” she continued. “After tigers are too old for pay to play sessions by people like Joe Exotic, Bhagavan ‘Doc’ Antle, Marc McCarthy, Mario Tabraue and others, they become a liability instead of an asset.”

“While I think most [big cats] are destroyed behind closed gates at that point, some end up being given away to people who want to have a tiger to show off,” she added. “That never works out and the cats either die or end up dumped in sanctuaries or worse yet, breeding mills. There have been some accounts of tigers just being turned loose on communities when they no longer served as ego props. No matter how you cut it, it’s always abusive to the cat and dangerous to the public.”

Speaking about her decision to feature other artists and women in “WAP” Cardi told New Music Daily on Apple Music that she was eager to show that women can support other women.

“I feel like people be wanting to put female artists against each other. … You know what I’m saying?” Cardi explained. “Every single time I feel like there’s a female artist that’s coming up … I always see like little slick comments like, ‘Oh, they taking over your spot. They taking over this. They taking over that.’ And it just makes me feel like, damn, why it had to be like that? Because I actually like shorty music a lot. Why does it even have to be like that?”

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