Barack Obama

THE WORD | The Obamas Announces New Projects With Netflix

Former President Barack Obama and the former first lady Michelle Obama have a multiyear production deal with Netflix to produce shows and films. The annoucement of what specific content was recently announced 11 months after signing the deal with Netflix.

 “Touching on issues of race and class, democracy and civil rights and much more, we believe each of these productions won’t just entertain, but will educate, connect and inspire us all,” Mr. Obama said in a statement.

Here’s an early look at the shows and films the Obamas are planning (Source: NY TIMES)

 

“American Factory,” a documentary that examines life in Ohio where a Chinese billionaire opened a factory in a former General Motors plant and hired 2,000 people. Higher Ground Productions described the film, produced by Participant Media and directed by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert, as “early days of hope and optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashes with working-class America.” The documentary was already shown at the Sundance Film Festival, and Higher Ground Productions said it would be its first release.

“Bloom,” a drama series set in post-World War II New York that will explore the “barriers faced by women and by people of color in an era marked by hurdles but also tremendous progress.” It will be produced by Callie Khouri, who wrote “Thelma & Louise.”

 ■A film adaptation of“Frederick Douglass: Prophet of Freedom,”the Pulitzer Prize-winning biography by David W. Blight. Higher Ground did not announce a screenwriter or any producers.

An adaptation of aNew York Times series, called “Overlooked,” about people whose deaths were previously not reported by the newspaper. The obituaries have been published in a recurring feature in the paper. Higher Ground Productions said it would be a scripted anthology series.

A series based on “The Fifth Risk: Undoing Democracy,” a book by Michael Lewis.

“Crip Camp,” a documentary film about the origins of the disability rights movement.

“Listen to Your Vegetables & Eat Your Parents,”a half-hour series for preschoolers that will “take young children and their families around the globe on an adventure that tells us the story of our food.”

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During Final Hours, Pres. Obama Frees 300 More Inmates, The Most In A Single Day

In his last act, Pres. Obama, shortened more sentences in a single day in U.S. history

In his last act, Pres. Obama, shortened more sentences in a single day in U.S. history

On his last day in office, President Obama granted 330 commutations. This will allow many drug offenders a lesser sentence. During the last eight years, Obama shortened 1,715 sentences, including 568 of whom were sentenced to life.

Read Obama's Tweet About Thursdays Move 

In a letter to the recipients the outgoing President said he believed they had the opportunity right now to do what is right. 

"I am granting your application because you have demonstrated the potential to turn your life around. Now it is up to you to make the most of this opportunity. It will not be easy and you will confront many who doubt people with criminal records can change... remember that you have the capacity to make good decisions."

Watch: What's The Word at Obama's Farewell Speech in Chicago

According to officials at the White House, this was the most commutations done in a single day by a sitting President. White House counsel Neil Eggleston said this comes as Obama worked on lessening harsh sentences.

"The vast majority of these men and women are serving unduly long sentences for drug crimes... He has a strong view that people deserve a second chance." For an inmate to be considered under Obama, they needed to demonstrate good behavior, already served 10 years, have a nonviolent offense. However, some exceptions were made for the 10-year-rule and there were some firearm violations in relation to the drug crimes.

President Obama made history when his was the first sitting President to visit a Federal Prison

President Obama made history when his was the first sitting President to visit a Federal Prison

During his final press conference Wednesday afternoon, Obama discussed the role of voting  and how the United States should make it easier to vote. He blames the Jim Crow era, saying the reason for the low turnout is because many Americans are eligible to vote who don't go to the polls. "It became sort of acceptable to restrict the franchise... The idea that we put in place a whole bunch of barriers to people voting doesn't make sense."

You can read his entire last speech here.

President-Elect Donald Trump will be inaugurated at noon on Friday, January 20th. Close to 60 Democrats will be boycotting the event for Trump's word to Civil Rights Icon and Representative John Lewis. 

Trump has been having close door meetings with a number of people ahead of his inauguration including Steve Harvey and Martin Luther King III. 

What do you take away from Obama's final gesture in office? Comment below and tell us.

Chance The Rapper Performing at The White House for Christmas

Chance the Rapper scored another invitation to the White House. The South Side rapper and singers Kelly Clarkson and Yolanda Adams are scheduled to perform at the White House's National Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony Dec. 1.

Tickets for the annual event are free and awarded via an online lottery set for Oct. 7-10. Winners are scheduled to be notified Oct. 27. The ceremony is slated to be broadcast Dec. 2 on the Hallmark Channel.

President Calvin Coolidge started the tradition in 1923. Reese Witherspoon hosted last year's ceremony, which featured performances by Andra Day, Tori Kelly, and North Shore band Fall Out Boy.

Chance the Rapper, whose father Ken Bennett served as a deputy assistant to Obama, was a guest at the president's star-studded birthday party last month. 

 

Turn Up The Heat: Sean Combs Talks Education and Presidential Politics

Turn Up The Heat: Sean Combs Talks Education and Presidential Politics

Rapper turned Mogul, Sean “Diddy” Combs, gave his thoughts on revolutionizing not only the education system; but also the presidential election. In an interview Combs did with Al Sharpton, on the MSNBC network, he spoke on how the education system in communities, like Harlem and the Bronx, are behind; leaving thoughts on the future of not only his children, but the future of our kids. In response to this system, Combs has supplied his own education initiative.

“Instead of me talking about it, I went ahead and worked with the system to make it better”, says Combs.

Sean Combs also announced that he, along with Dr. Steven Perry, has opened Capital Prep Harlem Carter School located in Harlem, New York. It is a free public charter school that is for grades 6-12. According to the charter school, its initiative is to provide historically disadvantaged students from Harlem with the College readiness skills needed to become responsible and engaged citizens for social justice.  

Photo By: MSNBC

Photo By: MSNBC

 

In response to politics, Combs has a message to the 2016 Presidential candidates, to appeal to the young people of America, more specifically; the issues that circulate within the black communities of America.

“In a way I feel shortchanged, not knocking the president because I know there is a lot of juggling going around,“ says Diddy.

Relating to Obama’s terms as President, Sean Combs felt, “more could have been done for the black communities and feels that now is the time to Turn Up The Heat”.

Combs also address Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton to talk about black issues.

“The black vote is going to decide the next POTUS”, says Combs.

According to the mogul, the new strategies for the black voters of America should be to hold your vote. Let the candidates earn your vote instead.

Diddy also discussed how his current album will be the last album of his rap career. He wants to celebrate this victory with his Bad Boy family.

 

Musician, performer and businessman Sean "Diddy" Combs is adding another title -- educator. Combs speaks to Rev. Al Sharpton about his new charter school in Harlem, and his thoughts on what the next president needs to focus on. " Subscribe to MSNBC: http://on.msnbc.com/SubscribeTomsnbc About: MSNBC is the premier destination for in-depth analysis of daily headlines, insightful political commentary and informed perspectives.