What Had Happened Was Trending stories on the intersections of race, sports & culture

Daily Dose: 6/16/16

Freddie Gray’s neck injury was immediately obvious to a professional

9:02 AMWe’re coming down to the tail end of O.J.: Made in America, and Wesdnesday night was Part 3. It might have been the most shocking installment yet for many viewers. Our interview with director Ezra Edelman and ESPN analyst and Los Angeles native Marcellus Wiley about the episode is here.

The case of Freddie Gray is still ongoing in Baltimore. Two of the six officers charged have yet to be convicted, with one trial resulting in a hung jury and another resulting in an acquittal. Now, it’s the van driver himself who’s on trial for second-degree murder. The practice of “rough rides” is now well-known as a common occurrence in police brutality. Clearly, the driver has a major role in said activity. On Wednesday, a medic with the Baltimore City Fire Department described what Gray’s neck felt like when she arrived at the scene. ABC News’ Serena Marshall details the horrifying account of the first responder.

Orlando can’t catch a break. First, singer Christina Gimmie was killed by a stalker while signing autographs after a show. Then, the mass shooting that rocked America occurred a few days later. Following that, a 2-year-old boy was killed by an alligator at a lake adjacent to a Disney resort. I’m not an expert on Central Florida, but this has to be one of the worst, if not the worst, stretches that city and region has ever seen in modern history. Both President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will be traveling to the city Thursday to address the situation that unfolded at Pulse, a popular gay nightclub. ABC News’ Robin Gradison has the story.

Remember when Obama was first running for president? Remember what the biggest critique against him was, aside from all the dog-whistle racism stuff about his name, his birthplace and his “religion”? It was his lack of experience. He’d only served as the Illinois junior senator for a couple years after being in the state Senate for less than a decade. He was effectively a young buck (my God, those photos from then) in the game. Well, as it turns out, that could have helped him more than it hurt. FiveThirtyEight’s Julia Azari points out that some of our worst presidents have come in to office with a lot of experience.

Game 6 of the NBA Finals is tonight. We’re back in Cleveland, which means Quicken Loans Arena should be rocking on the strength of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love combining for 84 points in the big Game 5 win on the road to extend the series. In all seriousness though, it was the best game of the Finals so far, leading to a monster showdown that could end with the Warriors once again claiming victory in Ohio, now that Draymond Green is returning. Back to Irving though, here’s 17 things you missed on that vicious and-1 that we all remember.

Free Food

Coffee Break: Studies have shown that many believe black people don’t feel as much pain as others. This has led to countless issues in the medical world, nevermind trauma. But this story about the Tuskegee Airmen experiments explains how medical exploitation has long-term effects.

Snack Time: So, the reason I was in Italy recently was for a friend’s wedding. That friend is part of a startup company called Enzi, which makes fashion-forward shoes with 100 percent Ethiopian products. Here’s a profile on them.

Dessert: I’ve listened to a piece of music by Oddisee nearly every day for five years. Learn more about him here.

Daily Dose: 6/14/16

Michael Jordan’s ‘Last Shot’ is one to remember

10:46 AMMonday was my 23rd birthday and the Golden State Warriors lost. While I’m not necessarily Warriors fan, I was hoping that they’d be able to clinch a NBA Finals win as a special present to me, because I’m not sure how much more of this series I can take. None of the five games have been decided by single digits — less than 11 points, if we’re being exact. It might just be the worst Finals series in recent memory. Let’s hope that Game 6 isn’t another blowout.

New developments surrounding the Orlando shooting make the label of this tragedy as a hate crime more perplexing. The shooter, Omar Mateen, who killed 49 people at a gay nightclub Sunday, had a history of anti-gay prejudice, frequently going on rants about gay people, according to his father. But now, it’s been revealed that Mateen also had a history of regularly attending gay nightclubs, according to ABC News. He even was a patron at Pulse, the scene of Sunday’s mass shooting. This has become not only a story of terrorism and the recurring debate over gun control, but one of a struggle of self-identity. ABC News has the details.

Donald Trump has beef with The Washington Post. What’s new about that? Well, the Republican Party’s presumptive presidential nominee stripped the news outlet of media credentials for all future campaign events. This decision, which Trump announced on Facebook, came after the presidential candidate made comments about the Orlando shooting surrounding President Barack Obama, and the newspaper wrote about it. The Washington Post story Trump had a problem with was headlined “Donald Trump suggests President Obama was involved in Orlando shooting.” It was changed, but Trump is standing firm on his decision to revoke the newspaper’s access to his events. ABC News’ Noah Fitzgerel and Paola Chavez have the report.

How will the Orlando shooting affect the 2016 presidential election? The short answer: It’s too hard to really tell. Obviously, we’ve seen the two presumptive nominees from both major parties already comment on the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. And, in the past, the response presidential nominees deliver after such acts in the United States, or even the world, has led to increased support during campaigning. However, there are many other factors to consider when considering this question — especially when the election gives rise to candidates such as Trump and presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. FiveThirtyEight’s Harry Enten breaks it down.

Curious about where Draymond Green watched Game 5 of the NBA Finals? The Golden State Warriors’ All-Star forward, who was suspended from playing in Monday night’s Game 5, was forced to spectate from outside Oracle Arena, where his team failed to clinch the NBA title as the Cleveland Cavaliers forced a Game 6. Green watched the game from a suite at the Oakland Coliseum, next to Oracle Arena, with former NFL star and Oakland, California, native Marshawn Lynch. He was close by in case the Warriors won, but they didn’t. The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears has an inside look at Green’s agonizing night.

Free food

Coffee Break: The Cavs wore their black, sleeved jerseys in Game 5 on Monday night. LeBron James scored 41 points in the sleeved jersey, which is shocking because last November he criticized sleeved jerseys and even ripped one in a game.

Snack Time: With tickets going on sale Saturday for Kanye West’s upcoming Saint Pablo Tour, I can’t help to think back to 2012’s Watch The Throne Tour, when West and Jay Z performed N—– in Paris 12 times in a row. Good times.

Dessert: On this day, 18 years ago, Michael Jordan hit “The Last Shot” to give the Chicago Bulls a win in the 1998 NBA Finals, his sixth championship.

Judge Gonzalo Curiel

receives support from Kappa Alpha Psi after Donald Trump’s negative comments

12:10 PMCertain words come with consequences, which Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has had to learn the hard way in the past year. During a campaign rally in late May, Trump attacked U.S. District Court Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over the civil-fraud, class-action lawsuit against him.

Curiel is an American who was born in Indiana to Mexican immigrants who were naturalized citizens — not, as Trump said to the crowd while criticizing the lawsuits — “happens to be Mexican.”

Curiel is a member of the fraternity Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., and in recent days, one of the consequences of the negative comments has been nationwide criticism from Curiel’s fraternity brothers. Members of Kappa Alpha Psi, a predominantly black fraternity, have taken to social media, using the hashtags #Nupes4Curiel and #NupesAgainstTrump, to express support for the judge.

Besides tweets, fraternity members have also launched a petition on Change.org, titled “Men of Kappa Stand In Solidarity with Judge Gonzalo Curiel.” The petition does not call for any member to avoid voting for Trump, but rather provides information about Curiel’s identity as a Hispanic man who also identifies with black culture — the information Trump made no attempt to consider.

While the petition, which was started by the Montclair, New Jersey, alumni chapter, is not affiliated with Kappa Alpha Psi’s national organization, the fraternity’s national president, grand polemarch Thomas L. Battles Jr., released a statement of support on the fraternity’s website.

“Kappa Alpha Psi stands firmly against the practice of judging a man solely by his race, creed, or national origin,” Battles wrote. “We believe all Americans are entitled to the freedoms afforded by the Constitution without regards to race. Our fraternity will continue to oppose all forms of racism and rebuke those who promote this evil.”

Daily Dose: 6/13/16

The United States witnessed the deadliest mass shooting in history this past weekend

11:00 AMOur thoughts, condolences and prayers this morning go out to the families and friends of the victims in Sunday’s massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. The tragedy exposes — again — the horrific reality of gun culture and gun violence in this country. Columbine High School, Virginia Tech, Century 16 movie theater, Sandy Hook Elementary School, Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. How many more mass shootings can this country endure before definitive action is taken to get the guns away from violent and mentally unstable people and those bent on terrorism?

The tragedy in Orlando was much more than a shooting. It was an act of terrorism, connected to the Islamic State group. It was also a hate crime committed against the LGBT community, which celebrates its pride month in June. An armed man was arrested, just hours after the killings at Pulse, reportedly heading to a gay pride parade in West Hollywood, California. Though there is no evidence of a connection between the two events, it is apparent that this month of celebration has unfortunately given people a platform to commit violence. The Associated Press’ Christopher Weber and Andrew Dalton have the details.

Certain details surrounding the Orlando shooting are heartbreaking. If you’ve followed the situation in the last day or so, you’ve probably read a lot of information about the gunman, Omar Mateen. But what about the victims? The mother of Eddie Justice, one of the 49 people killed at Pulse, has released a text message conversation between her and her son from the moments leading up to his death. If you haven’t read it yet, brace yourself. ABC News’ Morgan Winsor has the report.

U.S. terrorist attacks have increasingly involved the use of guns. The effect Sept. 11, 2001, has had on our nation extends much further than increased security at airports. The 9/11 terrorist attacks, which until last weekend were the deadliest our country has seen, completely changed the makeup of terrorism in the United States. While it might seem like explosives are a common method of violence, that hasn’t been the case since 9/11, given the fact that federal authorities track their use. Guns are now what terrorists in the United States are turning to. FiveThirtyEight’s Carl Bialik breaks down the numbers.

The sports world reacted to the Orlando mass shooting. Professional athletes are often looked up to as heroes — their voices are as powerful as anyone’s. Taking this into account, it’s always interesting to see how they react when a major world event, specifically a tragedy, occurs. Many U.S. athletes, some of who are openly a part of the LGBT community, responded through social media. ESPN compiled some of the best reactions.

Free food

Coffee Break: Remember Rachel Dolezal? The white woman who was a civil rights activist, African-American studies professor and NAACP chapter president though she lied about her racial identity? Well, she’s back in the news, apparently now filming a documentary at Howard University. Random, right?

Snack Time: When a draft is 40 rounds, it’s hard not to waste a pick or two. That’s exactly what the Seattle Mariners did in the 2016 Major League Baseball draft when they selected Trey Griffey, the son of 2016 Hall of Fame inductee Ken Griffey Jr., in the 24th round. The funny thing is, this pick was simply to pay tribute to Trey Griffey’s father, a former Mariner great. Trey Griffey is a college football player and hasn’t played baseball since he was 11. Don’t think he’ll be signing an MLB contract anytime soon.

Dessert: Artist Fred Martins used the symbol of an Afro comb to commemorate activists, including Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela, who were imprisoned while fighting for freedom and racial justice.

Daily Dose: 6/10/16

Follow along with us in remembering the champ

8:06 AMToday, we remember the life of The Greatest. The late Muhammad Ali will be celebrated at an interfaith memorial service Friday afternoon at the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. Thousands are expected to attend the service, which begins at 2 p.m.

Thousands are also expected to pay their respects during a processional this morning that will pass landmarks in Ali’s life, including the gym where he began training and his childhood neighborhood.

Follow our live coverage of the day’s events here. Be sure to check out all of the coverage we’ve produced so far this week to celebrate the life of the champ.

We will also be collecting thoughts from readers on Ali throughout the day.