Gorilla tactics: Berlin delivery riders take on $1B startup
BERLIN (AP) — Dozens of workers gathered outside of one of Berlin's most-celebrated startups, the grocery delivery company Gorillas, to protest the firing hours earlier of a colleague. “We want Santiago back!” the young riders chanted last week, threatening to blockade one of the company's inner-city warehouses with their bikes unless he was reinstated. The wildcat strike on a balmy June evening was unusual even by Germany's strong tradition of“We want Santiago back!” the young riders chanted last week, threatening to blockade one of the company's inner-city warehouses with their bikes unless he was reinstated.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Three years after workplace misconduct allegations cost veteran TV and radio talk-show host Tavis Smiley his job and a national forum, he’s ending his silence. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
Smiley, who continues to deny the claims of unwanted sexual behavior that led PBS to drop his long-running show, is attempting to rebound with the purchase of a Los Angeles radio station that will offer a Black and progressive perspective on the city and nation.
2 South Carolina executions halted until firing squad formed
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Supreme Court on Wednesday blocked the planned executions of two inmates by electrocution, saying they cannot be put to death until they truly have the choice of the firing squad option set out in the state's newly revised capital punishment law. The high court halted this month's scheduled executions of Brad Sigmon and Freddie Owens, writing that corrections officials need to put together a firing squad so that inmates can really choose between that or the electric chair.
Sidelined during a period of landmark racial upheaval, Smiley decided to make his own opportunity with reformatted station KBLA 1580 Los Angeles. It debuts with a preview on Saturday, the Juneteenth holiday commemorating when the last enslaved African Americans learned they were free. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
“While I was watching this racial reckoning last summer, it was so clear to me that people were being heard to some degree, but there were no African American-owned platforms where people had their voice on a regular basis,” Smiley said. The media can lose interest when protests stop, he said, but the issues “that matter to us don’t go away.”
South Carolina executions blocked until firing squad formed
A law requires inmates to choose electrocution or firing squad if lethal injection drugs aren't available. There has not been an execution in 10 years because of drugs.The high court halted this month’s scheduled executions of Brad Sigmon and Freddie Owens, writing that corrections officials need to put together a firing squad so that inmates can really choose between that or the electric chair. The state’s plans, the court wrote in an unanimous order, are on hold “due to the statutory right of inmates to elect the manner of their execution.
He was also chafing at the isolation.
“It’s frustrating when you when you’re used to being on the air every day somewhere, (and) people are hearing your voice in this country, seeing your face, for as many years I’ve been doing this,” he told The Associated Press. But there was an upside: introspection, and “a lot” of it, as he put it. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait on a vintage AM radio in his station's offices, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles. KBLA's morning drive host Dominique DiPrima gifted Smiley with the radio in celebration of the radio station's launch. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
“It allows for growth. It allows for strengthening relationships with family and friends,” Smiley said. “So in some ways, I think I’m probably a different person than I was four years ago."
He did not reevaluate his workplace behavior because there was no cause to, he said, and again rejected any allegations of misconduct. After losing in court last year in a breach-of-contract suit over his firing, he's appealing the verdict that required about a $1.5 million payment from Smiley to PBS, which countersued him.
Vanessa Williams, Jennifer Nettles and More to Join PBS' 'A Capitol Fourth' Celebration (Exclusive)
Mickey Guyton, Jimmy Buffett and Jimmie Allen will also perform during the special.During the special, Williams, live from Washington, D.C., will introduce each of the performances, which were pre-taped from locations across the country.
“I have no idea why what happened to me happened," he said. “This Me Too moment happened at a time and in a way where it was very difficult, almost impossible, to put forth any other narrative, no matter how truthful that narrative was.”
While acknowledging what he called “consensual” dates with co-workers before he joined PBS, “I have never harassed anyone,” Smiley said. He alleged that the public TV service reached back into his work past to find claims of misbehavior that he called false, and labeled the investigation sloppy and biased. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait in his station's offices, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
In its court filings, PBS cited witnesses' allegations that Smiley subjected subordinates to lewd language and unwanted sexual advances and encounters, with six women describing misconduct claims in court testimony. The women have not been publicly identified. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait in his station's offices, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles.(AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
“Let me be very clear: I support the Me Too movement” and covered women's rights issues for years on his shows, he said. “I will not let you falsely accuse me of anything, and win, lose or draw, my name and my integrity is all I have.”
Tulsa Race Massacre: How to Watch New Docs Commemorating the 100th Anniversary
Documentaries on History, National Geographic and PBS explore one of the worst acts of racial violence in American history.“Black Wall Street was named that because there were bank owners, oil well owners, Black people who owned airplanes, etc. Those people were targeted because they were successful,” Dawn Porter, the filmmaker behind National Geographic’s Rise Again: Tulsa and the Red Summer, tells ET. “That’s not a story we have often heard. I always wonder what else we don’t know.
Asked for comment, PBS referred to its statement last year following the jury's verdict, which said in part that “PBS expects our producing partners to provide a workplace where people feel safe and are treated with dignity and respect.”
The allegations were made about a groundbreaking radio and TV host, the first African American to get his own talk show on PBS. He said he's received offers of work since his firing, but decided to amplify Black voices in America through a path that his late friend, Prince, touted: Controlling content and its distribution.
Smiley is the majority owner of KBLA, which he and investment partners bought from New York-based Multicultural Radio Broadcasting in a deal valued at $7.5 million. The station will fill a void that he said shouldn’t exist in one of the most, if not the most, most ethnically and culturally diverse city in the country. © Provided by Associated Press Tavis Smiley, owner of progressive talk radio station KBLA Los Angeles (1580), poses for a portrait on a vintage AM radio in his station's offices, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, in Los Angeles. KBLA's morning drive host Dominique DiPrima gifted Smiley with the radio in celebration of the radio station's launch.(AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
“The opportunity to have a Black-on-Black operated talk radio station in this city, where talk radio for too long has been all day, all night, all white, is an opportunity that is begging for someone to take advantage of it. So I’m dumb enough to try,” Smiley said.
Joe Biden the statesman
The president’s understanding of what drives Putin was perhaps the clearest of any president since FDR mistakenly dealt with Stalin. In Biden's view, Putin's top priority rested in maintaining the authority of the Russian government as the only guarantor of ensuring a stable nation and thus the legitimacy of the Russian people, something previous American presidents did not fully understand. And Biden was clever in making his points, particularly by asking Putin how Russia would react if its oil and gas pipelines such as Colonial's were disrupted.Putin was not as forthcoming in his briefing.
Asked if anyone has expressed reservations about working with him and the station, he said it was the contrary and that bookings for celebrities, authors and newsmakers are “lining up fast and furious.” Guest names weren't provided.
Among the hosts: DL Hughley, whose nationally syndicated radio show is part of the KBLA afternoon lineup, and Alonzo Bodden, a winner of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” and regular guest on NPR's “Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me.”
The Mississippi-born, Indiana-raised broadcaster said KBLA, with a signal reaching nearly 12 million Southern California listeners, could be the flagship for an eventual nationwide network. Asked about the station's agenda, Smiley rejected the question's framing.
"The station doesn’t have an agenda except to be unapologetically progressive,” he said. "We just want to be a voice for those who have been voiceless for too long in this city, speak a truth that is otherwise not being considered if we don't speak it, and give people a chance literally just to be heard.”
His definition of a progressive: Someone whose life and behavior "underscores that you want the same thing for everybody else’s child that you offer your own child.”
He's in charge of the radio enterprise but not its star, said Smiley, who headlined shows on BET and National Public Radio before hosting “Tavis Smiley” on PBS from 2004 until his December 2017 firing.
“This is not about Tavis Smiley. I'm only on (weekdays) three hours a day,” he said. “We are live 24 hours a day, seven days a week. ... So there are a lot of other voices on the station that will be talking about a lot” of local, national and international issues.
He spoke in the modest office building he owns and has long operated from, in the historic Leimert Park section of Los Angeles dubbed “the Black Greenwich Village." The interior was being revamped to accommodate KBLA's studios.
Most prominent men whose careers have been stalled or shattered by sexual misconduct claims have yet to try a comeback, among them former “Today” host Matt Lauer, restaurateur Mario Batali and media executive Les Moonves.
Does he see the new venture as a step toward rehabilitating his public image?
“I don’t believe that I am in control of rehabilitating any image. That’s not my concern. My concern is to do the work that I’ve always done," Smiley said. "At the end of the day, all I’ve ever tried to do was to love and serve people. For me, that’s the definition of leadership.”
Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s Lawsuit Over Firing From FBI Headed to Mediation .
After almost two years of litigation, former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s lawsuit against the FBI and Attorney General Merrick Garland over McCabe's very public 2018 firing is headed to mediation, according to a Tuesday court filing. The post Former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe’s Lawsuit Over Firing From FBI Headed to Mediation first appeared on Law & Crime.Garland, of course, wasn’t named as a defendant in McCabe’s lawsuit when he filed it in August 2019; that spot went to then-Attorney General Bill Barr, who by then had taken over for former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who was actually the one to fire McCabe in March 2018.