New ‘Day of the Dead Barbie’ celebrates Mexican holiday

(CNN)There’s about to be a new Barbie doll on the shelves, with flowers on her dress and a skull painted on her face. Monarch butterflies typically migrate in Mexico for the winter and arrive around the same time as the festival, and they have come to symbolize the souls of loved ones coming back to visit. Marigolds are often used to decorate homes during the holiday. This year, Dia de los Muertos will take place on November 1 and 2. On top of parties and parades, families often set up ofrendas, or altars, featuring photographs of late relatives as well as their favorite food and drinks. People also leave representations of human skeletons and skulls, and other offerings, along roads …

Boston is giving every public school kindergartner $50 to promote saving for college or career training

(CNN)Saving for college isn’t easy, especially with the rising cost of tuition, so the city of Boston is giving students a head start on the first day of school this year. How Boston Saves works Boston Saves is intended to encourage families to engage in better financial planning. The money can be used for college or career training, officials said. Neither the student nor the family can access the money until the student enters college or career training. The school division’s website says the student must use the money before they turn 27 or the money will go back to the city of Boston. The program also offers incentives for families to earn and save what it calls “Boston Saves …

After years of anonymity, the woman raped by Brock Turner wants the world to know her name

(CNN)Her name is not “Emily Doe.” It is not “unconscious, intoxicated woman.” Nor is it “victim of Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner.” In releasing the book, says publisher Penguin Random House, Miller is reclaiming her identity. Her struggles with shame and isolation provide a microcosm into the oppression that sexual assault victims — even those with supposedly “perfect” cases — experience, it says. “Her story illuminates a culture biased to protect perpetrators, indicts a criminal justice system designed to fail the most vulnerable, and, ultimately, shines with the courage required to move through suffering and live a full and beautiful life,” the publisher’s summary says. Miller, who now lives in San Francisco and holds a degree in literature from the …

St. Louis remembers its young homicide victims in a candlelight vigil

St. Louis, Missouri (CNN)Rasheed Thompson rewarded his 8-year-old daughter’s good behavior by letting her to go to a Friday night high school football game in St. Louis. She was killed when shooting broke out. “St. Louis, we’re all traumatized by the crime and the violence that grips the St. Louis metropolitan area,” said James Clark, vice president of community outreach for Better Family Life, a community outreach organization. “We all feel the hurt and the pain every day of the week.” Clark told the crowd at Herzog Elementary School, “everything that needs to be said, has already been said.” “This is an hour for action,” Clark said. “This is an hour where we must put all of our petty differences …

Race car driver Jessi Combs, known as the ‘fastest woman on four wheels,’ dies while trying to beat record

(CNN)Race car driver Jessi Combs, who earned the title of the “fastest woman on four wheels” after she set a record with a jet-powered car, died Tuesday while trying to beat a land speed record, officials said. Combs became the fastest woman on four wheels in 2013 at the North American Eagle Supersonic Speed Challenger, when she set a record of 398 mph. In October, Combs set a new top speed of 483.2 mph in a shakedown run. On Tuesday, she was attempting to go faster when she crashed. “On August 27, 2019 at approximately 4:00PM the Harney County 911 Center received a call reporting that a jet car attempting to break a land speed record on the Alvord Desert …

Professional dancer opens arts center for kids living in the heart of America’s opioid epidemic

Espaola, New Mexico (CNN)Growing up, Aaron Martinez watched both of his parents struggle with addictions. Ultimately, his older sister died from a heroin overdose and his father overdosed from prescription painkillers. CNN Heroes: Mosaic of dance But artist Roger Montoya is making sure young people like Martinez can find a different path through his nonprofit, Moving Arts Española. Since 2008, his community arts center has provided arts classes, free meals, tutoring and support to more than 5,000 children and youth. It’s not the path Montoya originally envisioned. He’d been a professional dancer in New York, but by the late 1980s, he was HIV-positive and had lost his partner and many friends to AIDS. Returning to New Mexico, he felt like …

Victim’s family said they can rest after a Florida man was convicted of manslaughter in ‘Stand Your Ground’ trial

Clearwater, Florida (CNN)The man who fatally shot Markeis McGlockton in a controversial “stand your ground case” was found guilty by a jury Friday night, and McGlockton’s family says they can now begin to heal. Drejka argued that the incident was a justifiable homicide according to Florida’s “stand your ground” law, a claim that renewed a national debate on the controversial law. Hear what Michael Drejka said during police interview The shooting The case began last July, when McGlockton’s girlfriend, 24-year-old Britany Jacobs, parked in a handicapped-accessible space at the Circle A Food Store in Clearwater, according to a news release from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. Drejka, then 47, got into an argument with Jacobs over the spot while McGlockton …

100 years ago, white mobs across the country attacked black people. And they fought back

(CNN)Thelma Shepherd was riding back to her Chicago apartment on July 27, 1919, when her streetcar came under attack. Black and white men hurled rocks at each other and at the passing vehicle. The 19-year-old who had recently left the South for a job in the bustling city didn’t know it, but she had witnessed one of the most violent clashes of the “Red Summer.” A panicky time for white America “A lot of people would think that 1919 was this heroic happy time for America because we just won the war,” McWhirter says. “But this wasn’t the case. It was a panicky time for America.” There were strikes across the country, rising prices and unemployment, returning veterans who couldn’t …

A pastor who wrote a bestselling relationship book says his marriage is over and he is no longer Christian

(CNN)A former pastor who wrote a bestselling book on traditional relationships has confirmed the end of his marriage, apologized for opposing LGBTQ rights and announced he is no longer a Christian. “I have lived in repentance for the past several years — repenting of my self-righteousness, my fear-based approach to life, the teaching of my books, my views of women in the church, and my approach to parenting to name a few,” Harris wrote in the post. “To the LGBTQ+ community, I want to say that I am sorry for the views that I taught in my books and as a pastor regarding sexuality. I regret standing against marriage equality, for not affirming you and your place in the church, …

A collection of photos from Ebony and Jet magazines is auctioned off for $30 million

(CNN)An archive of over 4 million historic photos from Ebony and Jet magazines was sold at auction Thursday for $30 million to a group of foundations. Though it’s unclear when the photos will be on public display, Miller said that the next step is inspecting all the materials and making sure all of the archives are properly documented so they can be digitized. The history of the modern African-American experience The archive contains photos from 1945 to 2015, with about 1 million printed images, 3 million negatives and contact sheets, and several thousand hours of video footage. In total, the collection is worth about $47 million. “There is no greater repository of the history of the modern African-American experience than …

‘This is our last stand.’ Protesters on Mauna Kea dig in their heels

(CNN)It’s been nearly a week since construction of a massive telescope atop Hawaii’s Mauna Kea was scheduled to begin. The barren landscape is rich with their history, and is believed to be the site of the genesis of the Hawaiian people. Many of their revered ancestors are buried there. “It is without a doubt one of our most sacred places in all of Hawaii,” Kanuha told CNN, saying it was home to sacred waters and native Hawaiian deities. Mauna Kea is also considered “ceded land,” which means it’s to be held in a trust to benefit future generations of native Hawaiians. And so the protectors have gathered there, Kanuha told CNN. He pointed out that the mauna, or mountain, has …

Sadie Roberts-Joseph exuded a ‘quiet power’ as she enriched her community

(CNN)When officials in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, refused to make black history part of the mandatory school curriculum, Sadie Roberts-Joseph created a museum dedicated to African-American heritage, friends say. “It was a shock to all of us that somebody could even do this to her, that somebody could have such a disregard for life — especially her life,” Richardson said. ‘She embodied our culture’ Known as “Ms. Sadie,” Roberts-Joseph was fascinated by black history, friends and family told CNN. She had one foot in the past and the other in the present and she worked to bridge the two in a way that would educate the young people of her city. ‘”That was her life’s work. That was her manifesto,” said …

Former Louisiana State University student convicted in fraternity hazing death

(CNN)A former Louisiana State University student was found guilty of negligent homicide Wednesday in the fraternity hazing death of 18-year-old pledge Maxwell Gruver, the East Baton Rouge District Attorney’s Office said. Naquin’s lawyer continued to maintain his innocence after the jury’s verdict. Naquin was not the only person distributing alcohol, defense attorney John McLindon said. “To pin this all on one guy was just really unfair,” he said outside the courthouse. “Max there of his own free will — he could have left at anytime.” Prosecutor Morgan Johnson insisted that Gruver was not responsible for his own death. “Max is a victim and it could happen to any of our children,” she said outside the courthouse. “This was no fault …

On National French Fry Day, your questions about fries, answered

(CNN)From curly to crinkle-cut, shoestring to steak, poutine to disco, July 13 is about celebrating one of the most popular side dishes in the world. Well, the short answer to that they come from Belgium — but also, not really. Though the origins of fries can be traced to Belgium, the French, Belgians and Spanish can’t seem to agree where the idea sprouted and grapple for the claim to greasy fame. American soldiers in World War I first encountered the fried potato in Belgium. Crediting the dominant language of the region, they dubbed them french fries. But it’s worth noting that different versions of the fried potato are a worldwide love, whether in India or Kenya. Who brought french fries …

Courage and sacrifice: 6 activists behind LGBTQ progress

(CNN)Activism takes different forms, whether it’s marching in the streets, speaking on behalf of marginalized people or influencing pop culture to embrace people from society’s fringes. Marsha P. Johnson: The defender of transgender rights Marsha P. Johnson’s name isn’t in most American history books, but it should be. When a judge asked her about the “P” in her name, she responded that it stood for “Pay it no mind.” The judge laughed and dismissed the charges against her. Her persistence and advocacy made her one of the most significant figures in LGBTQ and AIDS activism. The term “transgender” wasn’t commonly used in Marsha’s lifetime, but she identified as a “transvestite,” gay and a drag queen and used she/her pronouns. “I …

Here are 5 ways to show your patriotism on Flag Day 2019

(CNN)There are three weeks until the Fourth of July, but if you can’t wait til then to celebrate the Stars and Stripes, we have another patriotic holiday for you. 1. Learn the proper way to display and handle the flag Today is actually part of a larger patriotic celebration — Flag Week — during which police stations, fire departments and schools are urged to display the flag and government buildings are required to. Join in by flying the red, white and blue outside your home. Just be aware that flag etiquette requires that no other flag can be flown higher than the national flag and that the flag cannot touch the ground or any surfaces beneath it. For more guidelines …