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Let The Mission Of Madam C.J. Walker Encourage Your Quarantine Curls

With all of us staying indoors, the need for more diverse entertainment as well as encouragement due to our lost routines is much needed. That’s why, when Netflix announced that it would release the miniseries Self Made: Inspired by the Life of Madam C.J. Walker, starring Academy Award winner Octavia Spencer in the titular role, we were beyond elated. After all, besides the inclusion of all-star cast (including actors Blair Underwood and Tiffany Haddish), Madam C.J. Walker’s life and business have had a huge impact on Black women and men across the globe. This impact is being highlighted once again as the coronavirus pandemic has limited the world’s Black community’s access to haircare products.

So who is Madam C.J. Walker anyway?

Born Sarah Breedlove in 1986, she became Madam C. J. Walker by marriage.

Netflix

History describes her as the world’s first female self-made millionaire in the United States and she was an American entrepreneur, philanthropist, and political and social activist. Most importantly she was the founder of Madam C. J. Walker Manufacturing Company a business that established the first line of cosmetics and hair care products for Black women and afforded her fortune.

Netflix’s new series about Walker follows the obstacles she was forced to navigate as a woman of color.

Netflix

Produced by NBA player LeBron James and Spencer, is set in the early 20th-century setting where Black men and women would have to take great and nearly impossible strides to come up in the world. Facing extreme racism and sexism, Walker managed to do so, and in addition to this, she succeeded in revolutionizing Black beauty standards, giving Black people access to products that catered to their hair needs.

Interestingly enough, Netflix’s release of the new mini-series comes at a time when Black women face the dilemma of how to manage their hair in quarantine.

This, now as the coronavirus pandemic has forced all nonessential businesses like salons to shutter. Black women and men are needing now to rely on themselves to not only care for their hair but also style it in ways that make them feel happy and comfortable. After all, even if we aren’t seeing anyone at the moment, everyone wants to feel beautiful.

As The Los Angeles Times points out, “Some women are taking the time to go natural and give their hair a break from weaves, chemicals, and heat styling; some are continuing to braid their hair or learning to braid for the first time; a few are confronting their natural hair texture after an extended break and panicking.”

Fortunately, we live in a world where we have access to resources like Youtube and blogs that can show women how to style their hair and keep it healthy. Who knew, the internet space would take on the modern role of Madam Walker?

Former Miss Colombia Posts Video Dancing After Part Of Her Left Leg Had To Be Amputated

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Former Miss Colombia Posts Video Dancing After Part Of Her Left Leg Had To Be Amputated

danielaalvareztv / Instagram

Former Miss Colombia Daniella Álvarez is showing that there is nothing that can keep her down. The former beauty pageant star had to have part of her left leg amputated after complications from a routine surgery.

Daniella Álvarez, a former Miss Colombia, is showing the world her resilience.

After a routine surgical procedure, and several follow up surgeries, part of the beauty pageant star’s left leg was amputated. Despite a major surgery, Álvarez is determined to live out the rest of her dreams and regardless of the amputation.

She recently shared a video on Instagram of her dancing for the first time since the surgery 3 weeks ago.

“Putting swing to life with my favorite partner @rickialvarezv. No matter the difficulties,” Álvarez writes in her post. “We must be resilient in life!”

Álvarez’s story is a cautionary tale of the kinds of complications that can arise from routine surgical procedures.

Álvarez explains that she went in to have a lump removed from her abdomen. Unfortunately, that surgery led to complications that required follow up surgeries to rectify the issues. Those follow up surgeries led to ischemia, which is when blood doesn’t flow where it needs to. The ischemia attacked both of her legs yet the left one was the most impacted.

Doctors tried everything they could to save Álvarez’s left leg.

After multiple surgeries, it became clear to doctors that they would not be able to save Álvarez’s leg. The only option left was to amputate and Álvarez accepted that fate with grace and class. The young woman seemed at peace with the decision and trusted that her doctors had done their jobs to the best of their ability.

Best wishes on an increasingly speedy recovery!

Álvarez’s right leg is not completely healed from the complications but it is getting better.

“The ischemia has also affected the functionality of my other foot as well, I am unable to walk,” Álvarez told La FM, according to Hola. “My right foot feels completely asleep and hasn’t woken up and we don’t know how long it will take for the foot to start functioning again.”

READ: Colombia’s Beauty Queen Winner Shared Her Brave Decision To Have Her Leg Amputated

The Supreme Court Just Decided To Allow Religious Employers To Deny Workers Birth Control

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The Supreme Court Just Decided To Allow Religious Employers To Deny Workers Birth Control

Tim Matsui / Getty

In another battle about birth control, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that the Trump administration has the right to allow employers to refuse coverage for workers seeking to obtain birth control through work insurance plans. Giving employers with religious or moral objections a pass, the Supreme Court made the ruling which is deeply concerning considering how much it infringes on women’s rights.

The decision which had a 7:2 vote marks the end of years of lawsuits over the Affordable Care Act’s “birth control mandate.”

Over a decade ago, the Obama administration made employers offer employees birth control coverage. Since the decision, religious liberty proponents and reproductive rights advocates squared off over which employers should be excluded from that requirement. According to Vice, “Over the years, the government has given churches and other houses of worship, as well as some other employers, ways to skirt that requirement.”

In 2017, the Trump administration issued a set of new rules that increased the number of organizations to refuse birth control coverage.

The change in rules gives private employers with sincerely held religious and moral objections to be exempt.

After Pennsylvania and New Jersey pursued lawsuits over the change and won in a lower court, the Trump administration and the Little Sisters of the Poor appealed to the Supreme Court for an overturned ruling. Justice Clarence Thomas ruled that the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury had the right to create such exemptions ruling “The only question we face today is what the plain language of the statute authorizes. And the plain language of the statute clearly allows the Departments to create the preventive care standards as well as the religious and moral exemptions.”

Conservative Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, and Brett Kavanaugh agreed with Thomas’ opinion. Chief Justice John Roberts, who has sided with the liberals in various recent cases, also ruled in their favor.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Justice Sonia Sotomayor ruled against the measure.

In her dissent, Ginsburg underlined that the government has an estimated number of 70,500 to 126,400 women who could lose their “no-cost contraceptive services” should additional employers be exempt. “This court leaves women workers to fend for themselves, to seek contraceptive coverage from sources other than their employer’s insurer, and, absent another available source of funding, to pay for contraceptive services out of their own pockets,” Ginsburg wrote.

In May, Ginsburg made history when she called into the arguments over the case from the hospital due to the coronavirus pandemic and her recovery from “non-surgical treatment.”

“You are shifting the employer’s religious beliefs — the cost of them — onto the employees,” Ginsburg told then-Solicitor General Noel Francisco. She also added that women who lose birth control coverage will most likely be forced to find coverage through government programs like Medicaid or pay for their health care out of pocket. “The women end up getting nothing.”