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Black Girl Times

Our blog, Black Girl Times, offers Black creatives a platform to discuss their experiences and those of southern Black girls, women (in particular but not exclusively) and gender non-conforming people on The Lighthouse’s website. Through this project, creatives use writing, photography and other mediums to underscore the organization’s mission, further elevating those voices on matters ranging from reproductive justice to music, economic justice to pop culture. Additionally, we share information important to our community and those, likewise, disenfranchised. We proudly say our aim is not to break news–there are people doing that. We want to ensure people in our communities know how the news in traditional media impacts their everyday lives.

Editorial Team

Natalie A. Collier

Editor in Chief

LaTanya Lane

Managing Editor

Adam Lynch

News Editor

Perdita Patrice

Culture Editor

Sirita Render

Creative Director

Joecephus Martin


Sarah Jené

Design Assistant

Haile Cole

Contributing Editor

Madison Meeks

Sports Writer

Sykina Butts

Danielle Buckingham

Jammie Garrett 

Jessiree Jenkins  

Jaylin Jones

Ashlee Kelly

Tysianna Marino 

Jeanette Miller

Ste’Aira Thomas

Lighthouse Staff


Kia Sullivan

Editorial Assistant



Welcome to October!

Titles are important. Not the honorific kinds of titles, but the way you name things—books, businesses, initiatives. A title that shows itself precise, generous and exact is Jesmyn Ward’s memoir, “Men We Reaped.” With a heavy nod to that book, its title and sentiment, our theme for the month is “The Women We’ve Reaped.” During...
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Struggling State Loses Only Burn Center to Covid and Boredom

The state of Mississippi is losing its only burn center at Merit Health Central in South Jackson. The JMS Burn and Reconstruction Center, which includes 13 intensive care patient rooms, is closing due to staffing issues. “The complex medical needs of burn patients require support from a broad range of specialists — ones you typically...
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On Pancakes

The older I’ve gotten, the more I’ve enjoyed cooking. I’ve always been a pretty good cook, but I haven’t always enjoyed it. There’s a ceremony, a ritual to it I embrace now. Besides that, preparing meals appeals to the design and style parts of me. Though I often do it alone, I like to make...
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The Power of Punctuation

      The Power of Punctuation Toni Morrison said, “We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.” This punctuation day, I am thinking about how Black women writers use punctuation to do language their way, particularly, the poets. These women use...
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Union Power Growing in the Wake of Covid, Public Opinion

The U.S. has not been a union-friendly nation in the last few decades, and union membership continues to decline in some sectors. However, unions appear to be entering the autumn season on a fierce note. Workers can thank the economy that bounced back from the COVID epidemic for a flurry of successful organization attempts. Plummeting...
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Biggest Lessons Learned from Freshman Year

Many people have asked me how my freshman year in college went, and I simply say, “It went,” because I don’t know how to categorize it. I’ve had many highs, and several lows. It’s taken me the entire summer to process my freshman year, and as I think about it, Karyn White’s song “Superwoman,” often...
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Black Women Access the American Dream Overseas

Black Americans with college degrees and financial resources are moving beyond American shores. The U.S. is no longer the epitome of easy living as other nations modernize, and some middle class Black professionals have discovered they can better enjoy their lives and grow their wealth elsewhere. Thirty-seven-year-old Asha Farrah and 42-year-old Nancy Caroline both came...
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Racism Brings Mississippi’s Capital to its Knees

  After decades of siphoning away the City of Jackson’s tax base the state of Mississippi must now come to terms with the capital city’s inability to repair its water system. The city is moving into its fifth week without safe drinking water due to a malfunctioning water treatment plant and decaying infrastructure, and now...
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Welcome to September!

It used to be pretty common when someone might ask another “What’s your dream job?” the other person would respond with a point where their passion or hobby met an opportunity to make money. If you’re a millennial—elder millennial, as they call us in our late 30s, early 40s—a generation older and maybe even younger....
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5th Circuit Upholds Jim Crow

The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals said a Mississippi’s Jim Crow law keeping nearly 16% of Black residents from voting should stay on the books. The court affirmed a lower court ruling keeping the state constitutional provision intact, despite the language being inserted by unabashed racists targeting Black residents for disenfranchisement. The current provision places...
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Positive Results in Michigan After Teen Incarcerations

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer called for a commission to decrease adolescent presence in Michigan’s justice system after a controversial arrest and budget issues. The state of Michigan made headlines for all the wrong reasons in 2020 after it detained a 15-year-old Black student for failing to complete her online schoolwork. Authorities had previously put the...
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As Suicide Rates Increase, Youth Advocates Say Texas Juvenile Justice System Beyond Repair

Martin A. Martinez, Youth Justice Policy Advocate for Texas Appleseed. The juvenile justice system in Texas is woefully understaffed and badly managed, and this is driving up suicide attempts among its underaged incarcerated population. Federal investigators were scrutinizing the state’s Juvenile Department last year, but lingering staffing shortages and failed reforms are taking a toll...
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“Nope” is a Black Western and a Family Movie

I returned to the movie theater for the first time in three years—the last thing I clearly remember seeing is “Aquaman”—to see Jordan Peele’s latest film, “Nope.” This film made my return worth the wait. I won’t write any spoilers in this, but there are two things that stood out to me. “Nope” is a...
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Rediscovering the Value of Telling Slave Stories Through Barry Jenkins’ ‘The Underground Railroad’

Before watching “The Underground Railroad,” now streaming on Amazon Prime, I first saw the show’s companion piece, “An Act of Seeing: Barry Jenkins’s The Gaze,” at the Museum of Moving Images. The exhibit’s standout feature was a compilation of moving-image portraits of the series’ cast, staring directly at the camera as life carries on behind...
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Be right back!

An important part of self-care is rest, so that’s what we’re doing this week! There won’t be any updates or new posts for the week of August 8-12, but we will be back to our regularly scheduled programming on Monday, August 15. In the meantime, catch up on any of the content you might have...
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Mississippi Legislators are Sneaking Millions in Subsidies to Segregation Schools

"They came back and, without the knowledge of most of the legislature, they changed the bill to take half of that funding away from children in foster care and give it to children in private schools.”
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Welcome Black to School!

August is a significant month in many of our lives for a myriad reasons. For some, we’re preparing for the start of school—choosing the best ‘fit, deciding how deep we want the side part to be or wondering how we’ll deal with that clique of girls we somehow avoided online but now we’ll be seeing...
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“Good Luck to You, Leo Grande” is About the Search for Pleasure and Much More

You hardly ever see truly sexy movies anymore. Today’s studios focus on blockbusters with three hour run times and comic book characters who don’t seem to have any desire to do anything other than destroy cities as they try to save the world. Where’s the passion, romance, intimacy, or just good ol’ sexual tension and...
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“We Own This City” Returns to Baltimore to Tackle Police Brutality

“We Own This City,” written and created by David Simon, now streaming on HBO Max, represents an evolution of public sentiment toward law enforcement. Television, it seems, is finally depicting the abuse of power minority communities have experienced from police for decades. Things have certainly come a long way since fawning post-9/11 police dramas like...
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