Friday Open Thread : Essence Mitchell recognized for perfect attendance from kindergarten through high school

essence mitchell 5CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. — A Virginia teen has been able to achieve an incredible feat very few students can achieve; now her high school is recognizing her for it.

Midlothian High School has recognized Essence Mitchell, a senior at the school, for perfect attendance throughout her entire academic career.

That’s right; Essence has never missed a day of school since Kindergarten.

“It’s very important to me; my mom has made it a routine for me to go to school every day, and, in not doing so, it would just feel different,” Essence said in the December edition of the Midlo Scoop newspaper.

Essence mom, Tawanna Mitchell said she recently realized the impressive feat while talking with one of Essence’s teachers about a college recommendation letter.

“That’s when it clicked; she’s never missed a day of school,” Mitchell said.

She said she used to keep track of her attendance in elementary school, but lost sight of it through middle and high school. “It just happened that way,” she said.

“Her dad and I encouraged her to be all that she can be in all her endeavors,” Mitchell said.

“I think I’m most proud of Essence because she not just willing to just do great things for herself, but she wants to do well and give back to others,” Mitchell said.

The 17-year-old’s community service includes feeding the homeless with a local church and donating her clothes to less fortunate children.

In school, Essence was inducted into the National Society of High School Scholars in August for overall academic achievement. She is the Vice President of the Hand and Hand club, which mentors kids at Evergreen Elementary. She is also in the Service Learning program and assists teachers and students in the classroom at J.B. Watkins Elementary School.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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76 Responses to Friday Open Thread : Essence Mitchell recognized for perfect attendance from kindergarten through high school

  1. rikyrah says:

    yeah, he ‘forgot’ to disclose it…AGAIN.


    we’re supposed to believe that bullshyt?


    FRIDAY, JAN 15, 2016 07:30 PM CST

    Report: Cruz failed to disclose 2nd loan for 2012 Senate run

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The New York Times is reporting that Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz failed to disclose a loan from Citibank that was used to help finance his successful 2012 Senate campaign.

    The newspaper says the Texas senator sent a letter Thursday to federal election officials acknowledging his failure to report the loan.

    Cruz has been under scrutiny since the Times reported Wednesday that he had failed to report a 2012 campaign loan from Goldman Sachs, where his wife, Heidi Cruz, is an employee. The Times reports that the two bank loans combined totaled as much as $1 million.

    The candidate dismissed the first Times report during Thursday’s GOP debate, saying he simply “made paperwork errors.”

  2. rikyrah says:

    Might be the last, but it wasn’t the first…

    I remember Under One Roof, with James Earl Jones and Joe Morton.

    City of Angels had Blair Underwood, Vivica Fox, Gabrielle Union, Viola Davis, Hill Harper, Maya Rudolph, Michael Warren and Kyle Secor.


    Tomorrow marks the 16th anniversary of the very last time CBS had a show with a predominately Black cast in its lineup.

    The series was called City of Angels and it was the network television’s first predominantly Black medical drama.

    The show, which premiered in 2000, centered around the lives of doctors and nurses at the fictitious Angels of Mercy community hospital in Los Angeles. Basically it was like E.R., but with Black and Hispanic people. And it starred Blair Underwood, Gabrielle Union, Hill Harper, and just about every Black actor who was not named Denzel or Halle at the time.

  3. rikyrah says:

    This is how toxic Flint’s water really is
    By Christopher Ingraham January 15 at 6:00 AM

    The city reconnected to Detroit’s water system in October, but the damage was done. Water from the Flint River was found to be highly corrosive to the lead pipes still used in some parts of the city. Even though Flint River water no longer flows through the city’s pipes, it’s unclear how long those pipes will continue to leach unsafe levels of lead into the tap water supply. Experts currently say the water is safe for bathing, but not drinking.

    A group of Virginia Tech researchers who sampled the water in 271 Flint homes last summer found some contained lead levels high enough to meet the EPA’s definition of “toxic waste.”

    The researchers posted their test results online, which I represent graphically below with other visuals to help understand just how high above normal Flint’s lead levels really were.

    Lead in water is measured in terms of parts per billion (ppb). If a test comes back with lead levels higher than 15 ppb, the EPA recommends that homeowners and municipalities take steps to reduce that level, like updating pipes and putting anti-corrosive elements in the water when appropriate.

    But 15 ppb is a regulatory measure, not a public health one. Researchers stress that there is no 100 percent “safe” level of lead in drinking water, only acceptable levels. Even levels as low as 5 ppb can be a cause for concern, according to the group studying Flint’s water…


    In Detroit, the water supply Flint had previously been connected to, the 90th percentile reading was 2.3 parts per billion — still highly acceptable.


    Now things get interesting. Here’s a glass illustrating the 90th percentile reading among the 271 Flint homes tested by researchers last summer:
    At 27 parts per billion, it’s five times as high as the level of concern, and nearly twice as high as the EPA’s already-generous guidelines. According to the researchers who ran these tests, the health effects of lead levels this high “can include high blood pressure and other cardiovascular problems, kidney damage and memory and neurological problems.”

    Recall, though, that 10 percent of the homes in the sample had lead levels even higher than this. Here’s the highest lead reading in that sample, from a home in the city’s 8th Ward:

    That’s more than 10 times the EPA limit. It’s 30 times higher than the 5 ppb reading that can indicate unsafe lead amounts.

    But that 158 ppb reading is far from the worst one that turned up in Flint, unfortunately.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Been saying that it was a criminal conspiracy from top to bottom, and I stand by that.

  5. rikyrah says:

    Elle, You Just Don’t Understand #BlackGirlMagic
    She Matters: It’s not about black women being superhuman; it’s about black women recognizing the humanity in one another that so many others often fail to see.

    Posted: Jan. 14 2016 10:23 AM

    On Wednesday, Elle published an essay by Linda Chavers lamenting the use of the popular phrase “Black Girl Magic.” Chavers’ essay was prompted by Essence magazine’s use of the catchphrase for female black excellence on its February-issue covers.

    “There’s something else that rubs me the wrong way about the phrase ‘black girl magic,’” writes Chavers. “The ‘strong, black woman’ archetype, which also includes the mourning black woman who suffers in silence, is the idea that we can survive it all, that we can withstand it. That we are, in fact, superhuman. Black girl magic sounds to me like just another way of saying the same thing, and it is smothering and stunting. It is, above all, constricting rather than freeing.”

    Chavers surmises, “Black girl magic suggests we are, again, something other than human.”


    Now, in fairness, there is no universal definition of “Black Girl Magic.” The phrase cannot be found in Webster’s Dictionary or even the Urban Dictionary. And Chavers is beyond entitled to her opinion.

    But black girls and women, the most frequent users of the term, have almost universally agreed on the same meaning. And it’s nothing at all like what Chavers suggests.

    Huffington Post editor Julee Wilson deems Black Girl Magic “a term used to illustrate the universal awesomeness of black women. It’s about celebrating anything we deem particularly dope, inspiring or mind-blowing about ourselves.” Image activist and cultural critic Michaela angela Davis, who used the term on a season 3 episode of BET’s Being Mary Jane, defines it, saying, “Black Girl Magic means we are shape-shifters, superheroes, styles-layers, soul scholars, truth seekers, sisters, healers, Holy Rollers, hotties, listeners, lovers, dreamers, divas, daredevils, doers of the damn thing … all at the same damn time.”

  6. rikyrah says:

    Mom of Denver Broncos Wide Receiver Who Was Pardoned by Obama May Attend Her 1st NFL Game
    Demaryius Thomas’ mother, Katina Smith, hopes to go to her first NFL game after spending 15 years in prison for drug trafficking.

    Posted: Jan. 15 2016 7:54 AM

  7. rikyrah says:

    Tichina Arnold Reportedly Sent a Mass Text to Friends and Family Blasting Her Husband for Cheating
    According to reports, she has proof—a sex tape—that she allegedly sent through the mass text, too.

    Posted: Jan. 15 2016 11:29 AM

    Actress Tichina Arnold reportedly sent a mass text message to friends and family announcing that her husband, Rico Hines, had been having unprotected sex with several women, TMZ reports.

    TMZ reports Arnold even sent along a sex tape to prove as much.

    “I can’t for the life of me understand why Rico would video himself [f–king] ‘raw dog’ ONE of his MANY extraneous whores that ‘trick’ on him for his money,” Arnold’s mass text message allegedly read, according to TMZ.

    Hines used to be the assistant basketball coach at St. John’s University. He and Arnold got married in 2012.

    “It’s over between Rico and I,” Arnold allegedly texted, explaining that this was where she was drawing the line in the sand. “This is where I part ways and all bets are off.”

    Arnold reportedly went on to name 20 women that she said Hines had slept with, calling them “extraneous Kim Kardashian wanna be’s,” TMZ reports. She expressed concern that she might have contracted a sexually transmitted disease and plans to get tested.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Black Twitter Scolded Whole Foods for Telling People to Cook Collard Greens Like This
    Really? With peanuts?

    Posted: Jan. 15 2016 4:03 PM

    There have been reports and rumors that collard greens would be the next item to be gentrified and Columbused by the mainstream—that is, folks would be told that it’s a green that people aren’t using as much and ought to start using, completely ignoring its legacy in African-American Southern soul food, and how it’s a staple in black households nationwide.

    Whole Foods caught itself proving that hunch right by tweeting that people who aren’t cooking with collard greens ought to start, and then directing people to a link telling people to cook collard greens with peanuts. Or at least that’s what the photo it used implied.

  9. rikyrah says:

    Go Young Lady!!!

    Go Go Go!!

    Hope to see you in RIO doing that new move.


    Trinidad and Tobago Gymnast Creates New Move, Eyes Rio Olympics

    Marisa Dick’s one-of-a-kind balance beam mount now has her name and is in the official Code of Points, a rule book that defines the scoring system for each level of competition in gymnastics.

    It’s a move that had never been done before, but Trinidad and Tobago gymnast Marisa Dick has perfected it and made it her own.

    The 18-year-old leaps off a springboard to a split, landing on the balance beam, with legs extended, toes pointed and arms stretched up in artistic flair, pefectly balanced.

    It’s Dick’s signature move, CBC News reports, and she debuted it at the World Gymnastics Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, last fall. It was the first time it had ever been done.

    And now the daring, one-of-a-kind mount has her name and is in the official Code of Points, which defines the scoring system for each level of competition in gymnastics, the news site notes.

  10. Liza says:

    Never saw this before now.

    This is one of my favorite images of Dr. King. Unburdened. With the future in front of him. I'm glad he chose us. xo— Ava DuVernay (@AVAETC) January 15, 2016


  11. rikyrah says:

    I blame folks in Detroit for not having run this man off. They should have a rotating bunch that protest him, with signs saying


    He shouldn’t be allowed to show his face.

    • If his name is Lou, jail his black ass too!

    • Liza says:

      Gov Snyder seems to think he is coated with teflon, but this whole criminal enterprise has got his prints all over it. His flunkies are just bad people, IMO, but I do believe the sh!t originated with the highest office and flowed downward. Good flunkies do what they’re told and get to keep a job somewhere in the administration. Why else would this clown Earley have been shuffled off to Detroit to run the schools (into the ground)?

      “CURT GUYETTE: Well, one of the things about the emergency manager law is that these managers were given extreme unchecked authority. And the thinking was, the reason for doing that is they were given the ability to come in, clean up the problems and get out. And so there was an 18-month time limit put on their terms. Except that this governor is exploiting what amounts to a loophole in that law. So what happens is that these emergency managers serve for 17 months and 29 days, and the day before their term expires, they resign. A new emergency manager is put in place, and the clock starts ticking all over again. And they just shuffle them from one place to another. So Earley goes from Flint to run DPS. And it just perpetuates this control. It can go on, really, forever, if they want it to, denying people of their democratically elected representation, because the school board, which has been fighting emergency management every step of the way, gets completely marginalized. They have zero authority whatsoever. And that goes to the heart of the problem of this law. It eliminates the democratic checks and balances that make a democracy functional.

      JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And, Curt Guyette—Curt, we have just about a minute, but I just wanted to ask you, in terms of the cities that Governor Snyder has chosen to institute these emergency managers, what’s the racial composition of a lot of these cities?

      CURT GUYETTE: With the exception of one, they are all majority African-American. And they’re also all very poor cities. So this is a racial issue, and it’s a class issue.”

  12. rikyrah says:

    January 15, 2016

    A GOP debate from Hell

    Two ghastly hours of infantile Obama-bashing and Clinton-cussing; a vile, vertiginous romp through the most exotic of right-wing fantasylands; and the shocking, unspeakable realization that the degenerate Donald Trump is probably the most presidentially capable among the whole squalid bunch.

    That was my Thursday night. How was yours?

    It was at times unbearable. By 9:15 Eastern I was praying for 11:00 p.m. Eastern. When 11:01 came and they were still at it, I turned it off; I turned off the wrenching spectacle out of a surfeit of wrench. The assault on one’s consciousness, the rape of national dignity, the unprecedented degradation of the presidential chase itself — all were almost indescribably brutal.

    – See more at:

  13. rikyrah says:

    January 15, 2016 1:27 PM
    Why the Republican Field is Incapable of Challenging Trump
    By Nancy LeTourneau

    Tying in to what Martin just wrote about the Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy, I’ve long felt that, even though the GOP has put up a large number of candidates this time around, the quantity doesn’t make up for the lack of quality.

    A general consensus seems to be forming after last night’s debate that Republicans are in the phase of resigning themselves to a Trump candidacy. I’m seeing that noted in a variety of places. For example, Jonathan Chait, Greg Sargent and Steve Benen all have pretty good round-ups on that sentiment. While I was watching the debate last night, I had a growing sense of how the lack of quality in the field has enabled the ongoing dominance of Trump.

    For all of his faults (there are too many to name, so don’t get me started), one of the things that Donald Trump is pretty good at is having a nose for hypocrisy as well as the ability to locate and exploit the weaknesses of others. One of the reasons his attacks work is that they usually contain a twisted sense of truth. The example that springs to mind from last night is that he outright called Jeb Bush “weak.” In a field where bullying is assumed to demonstrate strength, that’s pretty spot on.

    Part of the reason why none of the current candidates can effectively challenge Trump is that there is not one of them who is grounded in authenticity and truth. For example, one of the things Jeb has become known for in this campaign is saying something and then having to call it back or revise it 3 or 4 times before he’s done. Everyone knows that Rubio is simply spouting lines that he has practiced and rehearsed. As we saw last night, Christie can hardly speak without lying. These days all Carson seems capable of is rambling incoherently. And Cruz is the closest thing we have to a sociopath in this race (with Carly Fiorina running a close second) – twisting his agenda to appeal to the lowest common denominator. The one candidate who exudes even a hint of authenticity is John Kasich. But all he seems to be able to do is flail his arms around, talk about his record, and extol the virtues of trickle-down economics.

  14. rikyrah says:

    the new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, released late yesterday, just a few hours before the latest Republican debate.

    1. Donald Trump: 33% (up from 27% in an NBC poll from early December)
    2. Ted Cruz: 20% (down from 22%)
    3. Marco Rubio: 13% (down from 15%)
    4. Ben Carson: 12% (up from 11%)
    5. Jeb Bush: 5% (down from 7%)
    5. Chris Christie: 5% (up from 3%)

  15. rikyrah says:

    Republican debate starts to separate wheat from chaff
    01/15/16 08:00 AM—UPDATED 01/15/16 11:35 AM
    By Steve Benen
    Imagine a typical football game, except instead of two teams, there are seven, each playing on the same field at the same time. The teams play by their own set of rules, at times unsure who their principal opponent is supposed to be on any given play.

    If it sounds like that would be frustrating thing to watch, you’re correct. But the metaphor also offers a hint as to what it was like to watch the sixth debate for the leading Republican presidential candidates, featuring seven candidates running in wildly different directions.

    Debate analysis is like art – different observers see different things – but here’s how I rank the candidates from last night’s event in South Carolina.

    1. Donald Trump had his best debate so far.

    For all of his inexperience in politics, we’re occasionally reminded that Trump, the GOP frontrunner, can show excellent political instincts. He buried Ted Cruz on “New York values” by using 9/11 as a cudgel; he turned Nikki Haley’s “anger” rhetoric into a positive; and Trump benefited when his most competitive rivals started tearing each other apart.

    2. Ted Cruz remains the most skilled debater in the Republican field.

    Pressed early on to defend his eligibility, Cruz skillfully discredited the “birther” line of attack, getting the better of Trump. Towards the end of the debate, the Texan also got the better of Marco Rubio by tying him to the Gang of Eight bill and debunking the notion that ISIS’s existence justifies Rubio’s immigration flip-flop. Were it not for his “New York values” clumsiness, Cruz would have been the night’s biggest winner.

  16. Liza says:

    Dr. Martin Luther King would be 87 years old today, had he lived. An impossible dream, of course, given the times, but a tragic loss for this nation nonetheless. This is an MLK speech that Amy Goodman aired last year, apparently found in the Pacifica Radio archives.

    “In a Democracy Now! and Pacifica Radio Archives exclusive, we air a newly discovered recording of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. On December 7, 1964, days before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo, King gave a major address in London on segregation, the fight for civil rights and his support for Nelson Mandela and the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa. The speech was recorded by Saul Bernstein, who was working as the European correspondent for Pacifica Radio. Bernstein’s recording was recently discovered by Brian DeShazor, director of the Pacifica Radio Archives.”

    (Video at the link)

  17. rikyrah says:

    Mikki Kendall @Karnythia
    Black girl having asthma attack, another Black girl lends her a rescue inhaler…both face 30 days in alternative school as punishment….

  18. rikyrah says:

    When companies hire temp workers by race, black applicants lose out
    By Will Evans / January 6, 2016

    By all accounts, Automation Personnel Services Inc. aims to please its customers.

    For just over a quarter-century, the Alabama-based temp agency has provided temporary workers to industrial companies and warehouses in the South, and its dedication to clients shines through its motto: “We built our success helping you succeed.”

    But that focus on customer service can be treacherous. When its clients wanted to hire temp workers based on race, sex or age, Automation was happy to oblige, according to dozens of former employees.

    Former employees at the Chattanooga, Tennessee, branch office of Automation Personnel Services say they received orders for “country boys,” or white workers.Credit: Jeremy Brooks for Reveal

    Often, the practice was blatant. A manager at a Georgia manufacturing plant asked Christie Ragland not to send him “any black thugs,” she said. Ragland, a former Automation office manager until early 2015, said her boss told her to give the client what he wanted. And in Memphis, Tennessee, Josie Hernandez said her branch manager would comment, “Don’t hire that damn nigger,” and ordered her to send only Latinos to a flower delivery company.

    Other times, Automation staff members used veiled language. At the company’s Chattanooga, Tennessee, branch, a request for white men was known as an order for “country boys,” according to three former employees.

    Whether it was a preference for Latino workers or for whites only, the people on the losing end usually were black, according to former employees at branches in six states. Automation would send out black workers – to the employers who would accept them, they said. Sometimes, they were channeled into inferior positions. And if there wasn’t an opening at willing companies that day, black workers would be out of luck.

  19. Mother Emanuel AME Church has a Message for Presidential Candidates

  20. rikyrah says:

    Congratulations to this young woman!!!


  21. rikyrah says:

    FYI The Disney Store is having their semi-annual sale.

    Yes, I just spent part of this morning getting stuff for Peanut.

    There is boys stuff too…..

    If you have one near you, you probably have more options, but I just wanted to do it online.

  22. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone :)

    It was 38 degrees when I woke up this morning…YES!!!

    I will enjoy it while it lasts.

  23. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone. Happy FRY-day. :))))

  24. Ametia says:

    CONGRATULATIONS, Essence Mitchell!

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