Posts tagged with "Barack Obama"

Gabrielle Archuleta illustrates Black History Month for 360 MAGAZINE

Black History Month

By Hannah DiPilato
February is Black History Month and 360 Magazine would like to recognize some historic people of color who have become a positive influence on society. In 2020, the Black Lives Matter movement skyrocketed and brought attention to the diversity that still exists within our community. Although society has come a long way from the early 1900s when segregation ran rampant, the movement for equality has a long way to go. From inventors to musicians, there are a number of successful people we would like to acknowledge in honor of Black History Month.Martin Luther King Jr.
Arguably one of the most important leaders in the Civil Rights Movement, Dr. King spent his time preaching for equality in a peaceful way. He will always be remembered for his famous “I Have a Dream” speech and his ability to lead others in this historical movement. Dr. King is one of the most influential Joseph E. Lowery
Joseph E. Lowery is the grandfather of 360 Magazine’s President Vaughn Lowery and founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference alongside Dr. King. Throughout his life, Lowery served as vice president, chairman of the board and president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference as well as a leader in the Civil Rights Movement. George Washington Carver
Many people are familiar with George Washington Carver for his inventive skills. He made over 300 products from peanuts and as an agricultural scientist promoted methods to prevent soil depletion. Garrett Morgan
Garrett Augustus Morgan, Sr. is to thank for the invention of traffic lights as well as gas masks. Every time you stop at a red light, take a moment to think of Morgan for this essential technology. Barack Obama
As the first black president of the United States, Barack Obama made an impact as the 44th president and showed young people of color they have representation in politics. He continues to use his voice to connect with the American people. Kamala Harris
Keeping in the theme of politics, Vice President Kamala Harris is the first woman vice president, the first African American vice president and the first Asian American vice president. She’s giving young women of color everywhere a sense of representation. Madam C.J. Walker
As the first recorded female self-made millionaire in America, Madam C.J. Walker was an influential entrepreneur, philanthropist and activist of her time. Frederick McKinley Jones
Frederick McKinley Jones was the co-founder of Thermo King and he brought incredible improvement to long-haul transportation of perishable goods. Jones also won the National Medal of Technology. Stevie Wonder
Stevland Hardaway Morris, better known as Stevie Wonder, is a musical prodigy that became blind after birth and learned to play the harmonica, piano and drums by age nine. He is now a notable singer, songwriter, musician and record producer. Lonnie Johnson
Lonnie Johnson is known for his success as an aerospace engineer. He has worked on the U.S. Air Force term of service and has also worked at NASA for twelve years including in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Patricia Bath
As an ophthalmologist, Patricia Bath was an early innovator of laser cataract surgery. She was also the first woman, African American physician to receive a patent for a medical invention. Oprah Winfrey
One TV personality almost everyone is familiar with is Oprah. Known for her television show The Oprah Winfrey Show, she has made waves in the world of entertainment. She is also known for co-producing a Broadway musical version of The Color Purple, establishing O, The Oprah Magazine, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) as well as creating Oprah.com.Harriet Tubman
After being born into slavery, Harriet Tubman was a conductor of the Underground Railroad and helped many enslaved men and women escape. She led many people to freedom with her bravery and connection with antislavery activists. Rosa Parks
Rosa Parks gained her notoriety as an activist in the Civil Rights Movement and is known for starting the Montgomery bus boycott after refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger. She has been called “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement” by the United States Congress. John Lewis
John Lewis was chairman Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) as well as one of the “Big Six” leaders who organized the 1963 March on Washington. He was an essential part of the Civil Rights Movement and ending legalized racial segregation. Alexander Miles
If you’ve ever ridden in an elevator, you can thank Alexander Miles for the automatic opening doors; he was awarded the patent for this invention in 1887. Mills was riding in an elevator with his daughter and he deemed an elevator shaft door left open could be dangerous. Mary Kenner
Mary Kenner was an inventor famous for her development of the sanitary belt, the precursor to the self-adhesive maxi pad. However, due to racial discrimination, the idea wasn’t adopted for thirty years. She has five patents for various household items. Maya Angelou
Known for her many famous pieces of writing, Maya Angelou was a poet, memoirist and civil rights activist. Over fifty years, she wrote a number of autobiographies, essays, poems, plays, movies and television shows. She also received over 50 honorary degrees as well as awards for her writing. LeBron James
Along with being considered one of the greatest NBA players of all time, LeBron James also started the LeBron James Family Foundation to help create generational change for the children and families of LeBron’s hometown in Akron, Ohio. Malcolm X
As a popular spokesperson at the time of the Civil Rights Movement, Malcolm X encouraged Black Americans to protect themselves against racism. He preached a much different lesson than Martin Luther King Jr. who preached nonviolence. Thurgood Marshall
Thurgood Marshall was the Supreme Court’s first African American justice as well as a prominent civil rights activist. He served on the court for 24 years and helped with influential rulings at the time of the Civil Rights Movement such as the case of Brown v. Board of Education.Jackie Robinson
Jackie Robinson was the first African American to play in Major League Baseball in the United States during the 20th century. He broke the color barrier of the MLB when he played for the National League Brooklyn Dodgers as second baseman with the jersey number 42.

Illustration of Melania Trump and Jill Biden by Kaelen Felix for 360 Magazine

Dear Melania Trump, Our 2nd Immigrant First Lady

By Javier Pedroza

Dear Melania: Why didn’t you invite the new FLOTUS, Dr. Jill Biden, for a private tour of the White House living quarter?

“Under all circumstances, we must never desert ourselves”. – Louisa Catherine Adams, the first FLOTUS born outside of the United States of America (1825 to 1829). Historically, First Ladies are mostly respected and admired. The coveted position has been uncontroversial until 2021. 

Melania Trump, formerly known as Melanija Knavs, was born on April 26, 1970 in Slovenia. At age 16, she began what would soon become a successful modeling career, appearing in many high profile ad campaigns and working with some of the best photographers in the fashion industry. In 1996, Mrs. Trump moved to New York and 10 years later she proudly became a United States Citizen. Former First Lady Melania Trump is the wife of the 45th President, Donald J. Trump and the mother to their son, Barron Trump. She is the second First Lady born outside of the United States, and she is the only First Lady to become a naturalized United States citizen. 

Mrs. Trump is the first modern former First Lady to break one of the transfer-of-power rituals; welcoming the incoming president and family into the White House. This American tradition commenced in the 1920s and was respected all the way to 2017, when outgoing FLOTUS Mrs. Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama hosted Mrs. Melania Trump for tea while discussing the private residence. 

“Mrs. Trump should have invited Dr. Biden in for the traditional coffee. Typically, the first lady would come prepared with questions, she’ll meet and talk to the chef, the full time residence staff and have an opportunity for them to break the ice. It’s a courtesy, but logistically it’s incredibly helpful. That didn’t happen,”Capricia Marshall told The New York Times. Capricia Marshall was the former White House social secretary in the Clinton administration. 

In 2016 when former President Barack Obama welcomed Donald and Melania Trump to the White House, Former First Lady Michelle Obama held her head up high despite Donald’s reckless lies about her husband. Michelle Obama went on instagram and described how she felt during that time, sharing that while she was “hurt and disappointed,” she accepted that “the American people had spoken.” She went on to write, “My husband and I instructed our staff to do what George and Laura Bush had done for us: run a respectful, seamless transition of power — one of the hallmarks of American democracy.” 

On January 19th, 2021 CNN reported, “Melania Trump left the White House with the worst popularity rating for any first lady at the end of her term in polling history. The latest CNN/SSRS poll had Trump’s favorable rating at 42% to a 47% unfavorable rating. The 47% is the highest unfavorable rating we ever recorded for Trump. It’s also amazingly high from a historical perspective.” 

On January 20th, another protocol was broken when neither the former President nor any member of his family attended the inauguration. The Trumps also bypassed the laying of a wreath atop the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Ceremony, where the Biden’s were joined by former Presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and their spouses. 

As trending headlines like “Trumps’ snub of Bidens historic in its magnitude” by CNN circulated in the media early this week, we watched Melania Trump address the nation for the last time as First Lady of the United States. This was her first on camera appearance since the January 6th insurrection on the Capitol and she had not been seen in public since New Year’s Eve. During her farewell speech she spent much of her time expressing the importance of kindness. “In all circumstances, I ask every American to be an ambassador of Be Best. To focus on what unites us, to raise above what divides us. To always choose love over hatred, peace over violence and others before yourself.” 

Was this Melania’s opportunity to demonstrate to the world that she is her own person? A proud immigrant from Slovenia who later became an American citizen who respects all aspects of what it means to be an American or perhaps Melanija Knavs has always been a Trump. 

“Develop enough courage so that you can stand up for yourself and then stand up for somebody else.” – Maya Angelou

Rhianna Illustration for 360 Magazine

RIHANNA x ESSENCE

ESSENCE, the leading media, technology and commerce company serving Black women, kicks off 2021 with a stunning January + February cover art exclusive. Legendary artist Lorna Simpson collaborates with global fashion and beauty founder Robyn Rihanna Fenty, who recently launched Fenty Skin globally in stores in the U.S. and the U.K.

Their goal was to reinterpret the narrative of modern-day beauty in the gorgeous photographic cover collage, Of Earth & Sky, and in images comprising a 12-page portfolio feature inside the January + February issue. Over the past 15 years of her acclaimed three-decade career, Simpson has created collages that recontextualize images of Black women from vintage pages ofEbony and Jet magazines. Like all of Simpson’s celebrated works, these original pieces are more than what meets the eye.

Simpson channels Rihanna as her muse throughout the spectacular artistic rendering—reimagining the artist in a way that has neverbeenseen before. Rihanna looks ethereal in designer pieces including from her signature Savage X Fenty line as well as Prada, Givenchy, Hood by Air, Thelma West, Rick Owens and more.

“…I needed to create images of Rihanna to place within the environments of source materials from my archive,” said Simpson. “For the project to have the same kind of dramatic visual intensity as my collage work to date, I had to consider the atmosphere and lighting of specific source materials before arriving to set. Knowing Rihanna’s charisma and commanding presence, my effort was then to be as present and prepared as possible to capture her exquisite performance for the camera…”

The package also features the piece, Anthems of Possibility, written by Simpson’s daughter, writer and actor Zora Simpson Casebere. She weighs in on how Rihanna helped shape her womanhood at an early age and how serving as a stand-in model on set for her mother was a full-circle moment. 

“…At 13, I was deeply grateful that at a formative time in my life, it was Rihanna’s voice and art that became my portals to so many questions about sexuality, sexual exploration and sexual autonomy,” expressed Casebere. “Now, on set, I assisted my mother as a model as she explored how she might later place Rihanna within the visual contexts she’d selected from vintage Ebony magazines, old Associated Press photographs and 19th-century lithographs of mineral specimens.”

“When Rihanna arrived at the set—my first time seeing her in real life—I was mesmerized. She was the very definition of grace, charisma and influence,” continued Casebere. “Wearing a magnificent Maximilian black headdress, she requested the song ‘Thick’ by DJ Chose, then met the camera with power and possibility—power in how she moved her body through space, and possibility in how she dismantled and moved beyond institutional boundaries…”

The gorgeous issue will also pay homage to Vice-President Elect Kamala Harris’ historic win with reflections by five influential Black women: Donna Brazile, Leah Daughtry, Karen Finney, Star Jones and Minyon Moore. In addition, the issue features an interview with Barack Obama talking about his new book and journey as the nation’s first Black president. Plus, iconic actress Cicely Tysonshares an eye-opening excerpt from her new memoir.

For more on this issue, visit ESSENCE.com or pick up the January + February 2021 issue on newsstands next week. (Photographic Collages, Lorna Simpson)

ABOUT ESSENCE COMMUNICATIONS, INC. 

Essence Communications is the number one media, technology and commerce company dedicated to Black women and inspires a global audience of more than 31 million through diverse storytelling and immersive original content. With a multi-platform presence in publishing, experiential and online, ESSENCE encompasses its signature magazine; digital, video and social platforms; television specials; books; as well as live events, including Black Women in Music, Black Women in Hollywood, Street Style and the ESSENCE Festival. Essence Communications is owned by Essence Ventures, an independent Black-owned, consumer technology company merging content, community and commerce to meet the evolving cultural and lifestyle needs of people of color.

Rhianna for Essence 1
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JOSEPH LOWERY COVERS 360 MAGAZINE

360 Magazine officially launched their most recent issue today. It will be available online, in print, and for tablets. Its cover features an illustration of Rev. Joseph Lowery, and inside there are stories featuring Lubbock, Isabella Fries, Nikki Taylor, LC Convertible, Rolls-Royce, Door County, Elkhart Lake, Toyota Corolla Apex, and Marsha’s House.

A print copy of the magazine can be purchased on blurb.com and is available to everyone around the world. It is also available online to view on their site.

The featured story revolves around Lowery, who passed away on March 27, 2020 at the age of 98. His death did not garner much attention from the public, despite him being a notable American minister and Civil Rights activist. Lowery’s death came right as the coronavirus pandemic descended on the United States. Perhaps this is why his passing did not receive considerable attention.

“His legacy has gone under appreciated,” the article reads. “Swallowed by momentum of the current movement.”

Lowery worked in tandem with his friend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., with whom he founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, marched on Selma, and organized the Montgomery Bus Boycott after Rosa Parks was arrested in 1955. As one of the longest surviving members of the Civil Rights Movement, Lowery carried with him King’s legacy. 

With it, he eulogized King’s wife, Coretta Scott King, in 2006. With it, he delivered the benediction of the first Black President of the United States, Barack Obama, at his inauguration in 2009. And, carrying with him the legacy of King and his other compatriots in the Civil Right’s Movement, he was awarded by the same Black President the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

“Born and raised in Jim Crow Alabama, preaching in his blood, the Rev. Joseph Lowery is a giant of the Moses generation of civil rights leaders,” Obama said at the inauguration. “It was just King, Lowery, and a few others, huddled in Montgomery, who laid the groundwork for the bus boycott and the movement that was to follow.”

His death came two months before the Black Lives Movement resurged after the killing of George Floyd, transforming the conversation regarding Black American lives in the nation. Two months later, Lowery’s friend John Lewis, another civil rights leader, also passed at the age of 80. 

In his hometown of Huntsville, Georgia, there is a boulevard memorializing the civil rights icon. His legacy lives on in his notable work as well as his children and grandchildren, including 360 Magazine’s founder and president, Vaughn Lowery.

“Heading into an election season steeped with strife and antagonism, Joseph E. Lowery’s legacy serves as a poignant reminder,” the article reads. “His efforts to strive for a better world, his constant service and activism, and his dedication to both God and uplifting Black Americans all solidify him as a true icon of Civil Rights and American history.”

On top of its focus on Lowery, 360 Magazine profiles creatives like the singer-songwriter Nikki Taylor Vibe (aka Nikki Taylor) (7), singer Isabelle Fries (11), and model, influencer, and musician Don Benjamin (35). The newest models of hot cars debut on its pages, including the Lexus LC 500 Convertible (25), Toyota Corolla Apex (43), and the entirely reimagined Rolls-Royce Ghost (76).

And, lavish lifestyle pieces feature heavily throughout the issue. Elkhart Lake (31), which is a getaway on the east side of Wisconsin, is reviewed by 360 Magazine’s Elle Grant and Vaughn Lowery. The small city of Lubbock, TX (13) and the 212 Photography Istanbul festival (55) are also spotlit, and the articles on all three destinations are paired with stunning images.

Lastly, Marsha’s House is given its due attention. Marsha’s House houses homeless LGBTQ+ young adults, as Marsha P. Johnson did when she was alive. You can read more on page 51 of the issue.

About 360 Magazine

360 is an edgy fashion, lifestyle and culture magazine. It introduces cutting-edge brands, entities and trends to tastemakers within their respective communities. Its founding members have over 30 years of collective experience both as notable talent and uber professionals within the realm of fashion, music, art, design and entertainment. 360 Magazine is more than just a magazine comprised of journalists, representing a movement of social awareness and change.

It is an LGBTQIA friendly publication. The magazine is contemporary in look and appeal. Quality art content is the constant goal. The magazine will be entertaining, newsworthy and thought-provoking. It will appeal to a broad entertainment readership. No magazine like it is available today, constantly celebrating racial and sexual ambiguous talent and artists.

Kayleigh McEnany illustration for 260 magazine by Kaelen Felix

Outcome of Trump Testing Positive

By Hannah DiPilato

Americans everywhere were shocked to wake up to the news of President Donald Trump testing positive for coronavirus. The first lady, Melania Trump, has also tested positive. 

With the election coming up in just 32 days, Trump will have to work hard to keep up his campaign while battling the illness. Currently, both President Trump and Melania Trump have only shown mild symptoms.  

“Thank you for the love you are sending our way,” said Mrs. Trump in a tweet. “I have mild symptoms but overall feeling good. I am looking forward to a speedy recovery.”

Concern was expressed that candidate Joe Biden may also test positive because he and Trump were together at the debate on September 29. Although they were 12 feet and 8 inches apart and avoiding shaking hands, the candidates were indoors without masks for an extended period of time. However, Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, have both tested negative. 

“I’m happy to report that Jill and I have tested negative for COVID. Thank you to everyone for your messages of concern,” said Biden in a tweet this afternoon. “I hope this serves as a reminder: wear a mask, keep social distance, and wash your hands.”

Trump was scheduled to participate in a midday call earlier today with governors regarding coronavirus. However, Trump was not present on the call and instead instructed Vice President, Mike Pence, to lead the call in Trump’s place. 

As for the future, Vice President Mike Pence and vice-presidential nominee Kamala Harris is set to occur. Nonetheless, the two will be spaced at least 12 feet apart as a safety precaution. The Biden campaign asked for extra spacing because they were concerned the original plan for seven feet of space would not be enough. 

Trump is currently in care at Walter Reed medical center and according to Kayleigh McEnany, the White House press secretary, Trump will spend “the next few days” there. His symptoms remain mild with a consistent fever and “fatigue” as described by the White House doctor. 

President Trump has known for his prominent social media presence and released one tweet announcing he and the first lady’s positive test and expressing they will be on a quick road to recovery. Trump then posted a video on his Twitter at 6:30 p.m. thanking everyone for their support. “I think I’m doing very well but we’re going to make sure things work out,” said Trump. 

Presidential candidate Joe Biden along with many others have shared their sympathy and expressed they hope Trump and his wife get well soon. Former President Barack Obama, Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un are a few of the people to send well wishes to the White House. 

Biden’s campaign even went as far as to take down negative TV ads as Trump is recovering. This was decided prior to Trump being sent to the hospital. Trump’s campaign has not made the same move and all of his ads remain. 

As time progresses from Trump testing positive many more cases in public figures are being reported. The White House press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany tested positive for COVID-19 after days of negative tests and not showing symptoms. She continued to avoid wearing a mask even after the President tested positive. Her positive test was announced through her Twitter.

McEnany is one of many that have tested positive following Trump’s result. McEnany’s two deputies Chad Gilmartin and Karoline Leavitt have confirmed they tested positive as well. 

Presidents Illustration for 360 Magazine by Maria Soloman

Biden vs. Trump: First Debate

The first presidential debate took place on September 29 and it made waves on social media. The dispute was borderline chaotic with candidates shouting over each other and quite frankly immaturity from each party. 

Moderator Chris Wallace tried to keep things civil, but with minimal success. From coronavirus to white supremacy, topics were covered that everyone should know each candidate’s stance on. Although summarizing the entire debate would be nearly impossible, some of the most notable moments are recapped below. 

One of the most memorable parts of the night was when Trump refused to condemn white supremacy. Wallace asked Trump if he was specifically ready to call out this group of terrorists and Trump said he was prepared to do so but immediately blamed recent violence on “the left-wing.” Wallace and Biden continued to encourage Trump to criticize “right supremacists and right-wing militia” to which Trump responded, “proud boys, stand back and stand by.” This comment only fueled the Proud Boys organization and group lead Joe Biggs commented on the social media platform Parler that the comment “makes me so happy.” 

Biden did not shy away from calling out Trump’s racism. “This is a President who has used everything as a dog whistle to try to generate racist hatred, racist division,” said Biden. However, supporters of Trump have been brushing the Proud Boys comment off as a misinterpretation. The president’s son, Donald Trump Jr. vindicated his father’s comment. “I don’t know if that was a misspeak, but he was talking about having them stand down,” Trump Jr. explained to CBS News’ Gayle King. 

An unavoidable debate topic is the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the steps Trump has taken to combat the disease. When asked about a reopening plan Biden commented that he “would know what the plan is,” for a safe reopening when the time is right. He was interrupted by Trump who said “he [Biden] wants to shut down this country and I want to keep it open.” Trump continued to bash democratic governors for shutting down states and claimed this was only for political reasons. 

Although Trump has been seen in public various times not wearing a mask, despite the advice of health professionals, during the debate he said “I’m okay with masks. I’m not fighting masks.” Trump also mentioned how Dr. Anthony Fauci agreed Trump saved thousands of lives. Trump continued to attack Biden for all of the losses the country endured during the Swine Flu.

Through the debate, Biden remained composed during Trump’s offense comments and interruptions. Instead of losing it, he made small remarks that established his thoughts on Trump as a candidate. Biden also exchanged a fair share of side glares and head shakes to many of Trump’s points. “You’re the worst president America has ever had. Come on,” said Biden later in the debate. 

One quote by Biden, “Will you shut up man?” was a popular line from the debate that has been reposted on social media. This saying has already been plastered across a t-shirt that advocates for Biden. One post by @thefeministvibe on Instagram received over twelve thousand likes for posting this quote and their opinion on it. 

Another debate topic voters have been eager to hear the two candidates debate is the plan to replace late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Badar Ginsburg. Trump has recently nominated Amy Coney Barrett to take the place of Ginsburg. Nevertheless, there has been controversy surrounding Trump’s selection of a supreme court justice due to the rules implemented when Obama was still in office. 

Biden tried to lead the discussion about the supreme court into a conversation about health care. He mentioned that a Supreme Court with a 6-3 conservative majority would overturn many decisions that have already been made. This includes the Affordable Care Act and Roe V. Wade that made abortion legal nationally. 

The next presidential debate will be at 9 p.m. on Thursday, October 15. There is suspicion that the moderator will be able to cut the microphones of the candidates if they don’t obey the rules. Hopefully, the next debate will be less of a shouting match and a little more contained.

Trump Tax Findings posted by 360 MAGAZINE and illustrated by Rita Azar.

Trump’s Tax Records Exposed

By Hannah DiPilato

Recently The New York Times got ahold of President Donald J. Trump’s tax information and made the shocking discovery that he has not been paying his fair share of taxes. 

According to The New York Times in 2016 and 2017, Trump only paid $750 in taxes each year. Many working Americans pay much more than this and have an income that is far lower than Trump’s. The Times also reported Trump paid nothing for income takes for 10 of the last 15 years. 

“The Fake News Media, just like Election time 2016, is bringing up my Taxes & all sorts of other nonsense with illegally obtained information & only bad intent,” said Trump in a tweet today, September 28th. “I paid many millions of dollars in taxes but was entitled, like everyone else, to depreciation & tax credits….. Also, if you look at the extraordinary assets owned by me, which the Fake News hasn’t, I am extremely under leveraged – I have very little debt compared to the value of assets.” 

Although Trump is brushing this off as fake news, the evidence proves otherwise. Trump has hidden these records and sold others to the American people. Although he takes in hundreds of millions of dollars a year, Trump has claimed losses that gave him millions of dollars in tax refunds. 

This information is being revealed just 37 days before the presidential election where Trump appears to be just behind the democratic candidate Joe Biden. The first presidential debate is also coming up in two days, a debate that may need to question Trump’s behaviors regarding taxes. In the first debate in Cleveland, Ohio on Tuesday, Biden could easily interrogate Trump with these accusations. 

Alan Garten, a lawyer for the Trump Organization spoke on the findings in a letter. “Most, if not all, of the facts appear to be inaccurate,” said Garten and requested to see the documents that the accusations were based on. After seeing the records, Garten said that Trump “has paid tens of millions of dollars of taxes to the federal government.” However, by saying “personal taxes,” it appears that Garten is combining income taxes with various other federal taxes. 

The Twitter account “Team Joe” made a video comparing the tax returns of middle-class workers to those of Trump in 2019. They reported that the typical income tax for elementary school teachers was $7,239, for a firefighter the average was $5,283 and for a nurse it was common to pay $10,216. They then compared this to Donald Trump’s payment of $750.

Trump’s millionaire persona could be all about appearances. He is facing a lengthy audit battle with the Internal Revenue Service because of a $72.9 million tax refund that he claimed. The IRS is investigating the legitimacy of this claim which he received after declaring major losses. If the IRS finds this claim to be false, Trump could owe over $100 million. 

For example, Trump disclosed in 2018 that he had brought in at least $434.9 million, but his tax records show a loss of $47.4 million. Tax records are not specific enough to investigate all the business expenses that Trump uses to reduce his taxable income. For example, from 2016 to 2017 Trump’s Bedminster golf club in New Jersey showed expenses that increased fivefold. He has even previously boasted that getting away with paying fewer taxes makes him smart. 

The president also brings in a hefty income from overseas in various different countries. In his first two years in office, this revenue added up to $73 million. He paid more to other countries then he did to The United States, by thousands. 

Trump’s tax records can be compared to President Richard M. Nixon’s tax bill that showed in 1970 he paid $792.81 of taxes when his income was around $200,000. When this information was revealed there was an uproar from the American people and resulted in the decision that presidents and presidential candidates should allow their tax records to be shared. In 2014, Trump even agreed to this saying, “I would love the do that,” referring to revealing his tax records if he ran for office. Then when he ran, Trump mocked this idea and said he would make the records public if Hillary Clinton made her deleted emails public and if Barack Obama showed his birth certificate. 

This information could greatly impact the election coming up in November. Depending on how people that planned to vote for Trump take these findings into consideration. Biden has been previously leading the polls, so it will be interesting to see how things will play out in both the upcoming debates and the election.

Presidents Illustration for 360 Magazine by Maria Soloman

Biden’s Fight to Lead

By Hannah DiPilato

Joe Biden is leading in the polls against Donald Trump for the upcoming presidential election. 

Although Hillary Clinton was also in the lead for most of her 2016 campaign and even won the popular vote, she lost due to the electoral college. As of now, Biden is not only leading the popular vote, but there is also evidence that he is ahead when it comes to the electoral vote.

Swing states are critical in deciding the fate of the election. According to a recent poll tracker, Ohio and Iowa, both swing states, are leaning more towards Trump. However, swing states such as Florida, Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Carolina, Arizona and Wisconsin are showing Biden in the lead. 

Wisconsin, Minnesota, New Hampshire and Nevada will be vital for Trump in the upcoming election. Currently, however, the polls are showing that Biden is ahead. Nevada has swung more democratic in recent years, as their demographic of voters has changed from Caucasian voters that leaned right to a larger proportion of working-class minorities. Wisconsin has historically voted democratic from 1988 to 2012, and Trump only had the lead by a small percentage in 2016. Minnesota also generally votes democrat, but Trump believes he could be successful by campaigning to voters in rural areas. What will be necessary for Biden to see victory are securing the few states that Hillary Clinton wasn’t able to obtain – currently he leads in those crucial states. 

Even with his current lead, the fight is not over for Biden. In a Mammoth University poll, Biden was leading in Pennsylvania by thirteen percent in July, but this number had already shrunk to four percent by late August. Earlier in the year, with more media coverage on the Black Lives Matter movement, many democratic activists made sure to stress the importance of voting among younger generations which was helping Biden with votes. Now that the media coverage of the movement has become less prominent, this could explain the change in percentages from July to August. 

Although certain surveys are showing Biden in the lead, the race is still close. According to U.S. News, this is usually how the election plays out. Guy Cecil, chair of the Democratic SuperPAC Priorities USA said to reporters during a conference call that the United States is “still dealing fundamentally and structurally, with a very close election.” The electoral college votes could swing either way, meaning nothing is ever certain in an election. 

The most important thing to recognize is that these polls can never be fully accurate and can lean one way or another based on who is participating. Depending on the demographics of the people surveyed, along with who chooses to respond at all, these polls are only an estimate. 

After the recent and unfortunate death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, many younger generations have been pushing strongly that everyone needs to vote. The death of Ginsburg could allow Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to select another supreme court justice making the supreme court lean more towards the right. However, in Obama’s last year of office McConnell led a blockade against Obama’s ability to nominate another justice with so little time left as president. Biden commented on this issue and said, “Let me be clear: The voters should pick a President, and that President should select a successor to Justice Ginsburg.” The death of Ginsburg so close to November could end up swinging the votes significantly in the upcoming election. However, just like the polls, it all depends on who chooses to participate. 

Justice illustration

Biden Echoes Rev. Barber

Pastoral Letter to America from social justice leader Rev. Barber echoed in Biden speech

The words of social justice leader Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II are being echoed by Joe Biden, the former vice president who spoke to the nation Tuesday.

“To paraphrase Rev. Barber: It’s the mourning when we find hope,” Biden said in a speech in Philadelphia. “It’s in the mourning when we find hope — when we mourn.”

Biden spoke after a third night of protests in Philadelphia over the death of George Floyd, whose dying words were recorded as a Minneapolis police officer held his knee on Floyd for almost nine minutes. He was quoting from the Pastoral Letter to the Nation, which Rev. Barber wrote and delivered in a national sermon on Sunday. Rev. Barber is president of Repairers of the Breach and the minister of Greenleaf Christian Church in Goldsboro, North Carolina.

In that letter, Rev. Barber writes: “The hope is in the mourning and the screams, which make us want to rush from this place. There is a sense in which, right now, we must refuse to be comforted too quickly. Only if these screams and tears and protests shake the very conscience of this nation—and until there is real political and judicial repentance—can we hope for a better society on the other side of this.”

The link to Biden’s full speech is here and the link to his comment about Rev. Barber is here.

In addition, former President Obama recently included a quote from Rev. Barber for the Guardian on his foundation website.

“America must listen to its wounds,” Rev. Barber wrote in the May 30th column,“They will tell us where to look for hope.”

GRAMMY®, Lil Nas X, Old Town Road, Barack Obama, RIAA, Derrek Kupish, 10,000,000 units sold, diamond, MTV VMA Moonmen, BET, 360 MAGAZINE, Billy Ray Cyrus

President Obama Lists Old Town Road

Former President Barack Obama ranked Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road (Billy Ray Cyrus Remix),” a song also included on his Summer Playlist, as one of his favorite songs of the year.

“I stand here with the most humble heart that Lil Nas X’s ‘Old Town Road’ featuring BRC is still on Former President Barack Obama’s official playlist of 2019. What a way to cap off the year,” said Billy Ray Cyrus.

Old Town Road (Billy Ray Cyrus Remix)” continues touching audiences and all ages worldwide as the pair are up for 3 nominations at the 62nd Annual GRAMMY®Awards in the all genre Record Of The Year and Best Music Video categories, as well as Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, which air January 26 on CBS. These latest nominations brings Cyrus’ total GRAMMY® nods to 7 over the course of his impressive career. 

The GRAMMY® nominations follow Cyrus and Lil Nas X’s win at the American Music Awards for Favorite Song Hip-Hop/Rap and the Country Music Association Awards for Musical Event of the Year. In addition, Cyrus and Lil Nas X took home two MTV VMA Moonmen for Song of the Year and Best Direction, as well as two trophies at the BET Hip Hop Awards for Best Collab, Duo or Group and Single of the Year.

This is all on the on the heels of the song being certified diamond by the RIAA. Not only is “Old Town Road (Billy Ray Cyrus remix)” the first song of 2019 to gain the diamond recognition, it is the first in the RIAA’s history to meet the minimum requirement of 10,000,000 units sold so quickly.

About Billy Ray Cyrus:
Billy Ray Cyrus became a household name over the course of his unprecedented career which spans across music, television and theater. Throughout his nearly three decade career, Cyrus has achieved worldwide success as a singer, songwriter, actor and producer. The Flatwoods, KY native exploded onto the music scene when his first album, Some Gave All, debuted on the all-genre Billboard album chart at No. 1 and stayed there for a record-breaking 17 weeks in 1992. The lead single, “Achy Breaky Heart,” became a phenomenon as the single went multi-platinum. After “Achy Breaky Heart,” Cyrus followed up with back to back hits “It Could’ve Been Me,” “She’s Not Crying Anymore,” “Wher’m I Gonna Live When I Get Home?” and the anthemic “Some Gave All.” Cyrus knocked himself out of the top Billboard position with the his second No. 1 album, It Won’t Be The Last, featuring smash hits “In the Heart of a Woman,” “Words By Heart” and “Somebody New.” Cyrus followed up with dozens more that defined country music. “To me, my most defining moment in country was being joined by George Jones and Loretta Lynn on my self-penned ‘Country Music Has the Blues,’” said Cyrus. He also enjoyed a successful career as an actor in “Doc” and “Still The King,” as well as the Disney series “Hannah Montana” with his daughter Miley. Recently, Cyrus has shattered records with Lil Nas X with the global smash, “Old Town Road,” which remained No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 19 consecutive weeks.

*Photo credit: Derrek Kupish

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