Robert Mills says his work as an autopsy technician is more a calling than a job.On a rainy Tuesday morning, Aug. 12, just after 7 a.m., the lifeless, contorted bodies of seven men of assorted ages and races lie separately on steel carts within the autopsy suite at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME).One man with a mangled motorcycle helmet still strapped to his head, had on a dark gray work shirt with an “Utz” tag sewn into it. Another man was clad only in a hospital gown. While a third man was dressed in stylish knee length shorts and a baggy short sleeved designer shirt, most exposed areas of his skin inscribed with various tattoos.Each of them with a story most of us — outside their circle of friends and loved ones — will never know.Yet, many of the stories of the state’s deceased, those who perish in the wake of empirical violence and mayhem or under suspicious circumstances, are often the burden of the state’s 12 autopsy technicians.“We take it home, it’s personal you know? It could easily be one of our family members,” said Robert Mills who has worked in the OCME for six years and performed the same work in Georgia for 13 years. “No family is left alone, we are part of that family when their loved one comes through that door,” Mills added.What Mills alludes to is the reality that autopsy techs (whose entry level salary is $23,584) are not only responsible for all aspects of performing postmortem examinations, they are also charged with the often heart wrenching work of interacting directly with the loved ones of the deceased. Mills and his colleagues call this task, “working the desk.” Those duties include assigning cases to the techs “working the floor” (performing autopsies), assisting families, funeral homes and law enforcement via phone and in person and releasing the deceased to funeral homes.Indeed, the spiritual and emotional work of the state’s autopsy techs takes a toll. But the list of physical duties in the performance of their job is formidable.The techs perform lodox (X-ray) and CT scans, advise doctors and alert them to specific scenarios, maintain the sanitation of equipment and the autopsy suites, stock and monitor supplies and equipment, among myriad other duties.And then there is the actual performance of the autopsy. Watching Mills perform the gruesome and grueling work of eviscerating a body (which they most often do autonomously without a doctor’s supervision) is at once fascinating and horrifying. They remove all the organs and obtain fluids for toxicology, trace bullet paths, mark exit wounds, remove projectiles (like bullets), to name a few elements of the procedure.The task is inherently wrought with peril for the autopsy techs. Last week, the examination of a 24-day-old infant with meningitis, compelled several of them to take an antibiotic known as “Cipro” (Ciprofloxacin).They are under the constant threat of exposure to a variety of potentially deadly diseases and viruses like meningitis, hepatitis, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. The recent ebola scare in West Africa (which was contracted by two Americans who have subsequently been brought to the United States for treatment) that has dominated news reports has been a frightening reminder of the danger inherent in their jobs.“What we’re doing is a high risk job; it’s like working at the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). At the end of the day we really don’t know what a person comes in here with,” Mills said.“The techs are looking to be treated at an equal level, to be treated as if we are PA’s (pathologist assistants) because in the long run we are the doctor’s eyes…they are relying on us. We do it all from the beginning to the end,” Mills added.Although the state’s 12 autopsy technicians argue they are woefully underpaid (attorney J. Wyndal Gordon is representing the group pro bono) and not treated with the respect they deserve given the importance of their job; they assert that they perform it with a high level of professionalism and maintain that the work they do is more than a paycheck for them.“We want the family to know that we’re not here just for money purposes, we’re here to serve and help families (find) closure, their pain is our pain,” Mills said.“And that’s something people need to realize. What we do for a living, working with flesh, is a God-given ability; we’ve been chosen to do this.”
Dr. John L. HudginsAlmost a month ago as I stopped for my morning 7/11 coffee in Baltimore County, Inoticed several young people sitting outside the store. As I got my coffee (actually chocolate) a Black woman police officer came in and had a brief discussion with the person behind the counter, an elderly White woman. As I was leaving, a young White male officer had joined the Black female officer and they were discussing trespassing with the youngsters. One young man was quite persistent with the questions; “What have I done? How am I trespassing? As the two officers attempted to explain the situation, another officer, a Black male corporal, arrived. He walked past the first two officers into the store, talked with the cashier and came out confronting the young people (actually two Black males and a White female). The first young man persisted with the questions. The Black male officer became agitated and said, “You need to get off the premises before I throw your ass in jail.” Next, he slammed the questioner against the wall, placed handcuffs on him and forced him into the back seat of his patrol car and drove away. The other two officers simply watched.A few weeks ago a video was released showing a Baltimore City Police officer attacking a Black male at the corner of Greenmount and North avenues. Apparently there were some words between the officer and the male leaving a store. The officer appears to push past other officers and commenced to beating the man. This action was caught on the city police camera. The officer was a Black male.A Baltimore County police officer in Randallstown chased down a young Black man who he thought had thrown rocks at his home and choked the young man to death. The officer was a Black male.Earlier last year as his fellow officers watched and sought shelter, a Baltimore City Police officer shot and killed his girlfriend from an upstairs window as she pleaded for help. The officer was a Black male.A few years ago as I left class at Coppin State University, an unmarked police car followed a young man in a jeep onto the campus. Two officers (plain clothes) were in the car, a White male and a Black male. The Black male, a rather large individual proceeds to almost pull the young man from the jeep and briefly searched it. He then called a Black woman officer to search the female passenger. Interestingly the White male officer stepped back and simply watched the whole occurrence. When apparently nothing was found the officers got into their cars and left. Word is the young man had come to campus to pick up his mother after class.For the last few months our attention has been focused on the tragic, probably malicious shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. by a White police officer. We have noticed the many parallels across the country where White police officers have been brutal and homicidal especially toward Black males. Ironically if the police officer had been a Black male, most of us would not have heard of the shooting/homicide.During slavery there were a few Black males who became overseers, a job normally reserved for poor Whites. These chosen Blacks were often as brutal if not more brutal than their White counterparts. They were apparently chosen for their strength, their obedience and their insensitivity to the suffering of other Blacks who also were enslaved.During the twentieth century many police departments including Baltimore had desegregated by adding Black police officers. These officers were restricted to policing in the Black community and were not allowed to arrest Whites. My understanding is that in Baltimore they also were not even assigned patrol cars. This desegregation came in many cases after much protest and political action on the part of the Black community. The feeling at the time was that Black officers in police departments would be more sensitive and concerned about issues affecting the Black community including White police brutality against Black citizens. Because of this feeling the assumption was often made that Black police officers were generally better for the African-American community.This history often gave Black police officers a pass when it came to issues involving police behavior in the African-American community. Thus the misbehavior by Black police officers was ignored by the White community (why should they care) and the Black community pretended that it did not happen. In time African Americans gained political control of many of the larger cities with Black mayors, Black City Council majorities and yes, Black police chiefs. In too many cases these advances meant very little in terms of police behavior in the rank and file, poor and working class Black communities. In many cities like Baltimore the police departments remained controlled by the White ranking officers even with a Black police chief. The Black police chief was almost symbolic as the majority White police department was controlled by the very White ranking officers. It is likely that some of these hierarchies encouraged and expected maximum application of force by Black police officers against the Black community. The Police color became “blue” and Black officers were expected to fall in line much like the Black overseers during slavery. This took place despite the rampant racism and discrimination they themselves experienced within these departments.Today the African-American Community must demand fairness and civility not only from White police officers but all police officers. It is likely that a significant amount of the 5.7 million dollars paid in police brutality cases by the city of Baltimore involved Black police officers. Black police officers should no longer get a pass when it comes to abusive behaviors in the Black community. In true fashion, they rarely if ever commit such atrocities in the White community. If anything Black police officers should be held to a higher standard in providing protection for the Black community. The expectation to protect and to serve should not stop at White middle class neighborhoods. Black police officers should take the lead in providing high quality non abusive services to the communities of their families, relatives, church members, former classmates and fellow travelers in what continues to be an often very racist society. They should be an active part of the solution. They must not be a major part of the problem and be allowed to take shelter under the cover of their skin, a skin which they in too many instances demonstrate that they do not cherish and in some cases even hate. Obviously there are many good, professional, caring and concerned Black police officers everywhere. The thugs however should be sent packing away from inflicting harm and abuse in the African American Community.Dr. John Hudgins is associate professor of sociology at Coppin State University.Follow the AFRO online and on Facebook for opportunities for citizens to share their encounters
On Feb. 28 at 9 p.m., the Tom Cunningham Orchestra will be performing a three hour set of early Swing music, 1930-36, including selections from Benny Goodman, The Dorsey Brothers, Jimmie Lunceford, the Boswell Sisters, and others. The location is the Spanish Ballroom in Glen Echo Park, 7300 MacArthur Boulevard. Adult admission is $18.For more information, contact email@example.com or call 571-572-3356.
Fatoumata Diawara will perform April 17 at the BlackRock Center for the Arts.Malian singer- songwriter, Fatoumata Diawara, will perform, 8 p.m., April 17, at the BlackRock Center for the Arts in Germantown, Md. Tickets are $15-$26. Call (240) 912-1058 or visit www.blackrockcenter.org to purchase tickets.
BALTIMORE (AP) — A longtime Baltimore judge who was facing possible expulsion has stepped down.Baltimore Chief CIrcuit Judge Alfred Nance. (Courtesy Photo)A spokesman for Gov. Larry Hogan says Baltimore Chief Circuit Judge Alfred Nance submitted his retirement effective Friday.The Baltimore Sun reports the Maryland Court of Appeals was set to decide whether Nance should be punished for remarks he made during criminal trials two years ago.In October, the state Commission on Judicial Disabilities found Nance made disparaging and demeaning comments that undermined the integrity of the court. The panel recommended that the state’s high court strip Nance of his elected post before he reached the mandatory retirement age of 70.Nance’s attorney declined comment to the newspaper.Nance joined the bench in 1998 and earned a salary of $154,000.___Information from: The Baltimore Sun, http://www.baltimoresun.com
Anees Abdul-RahimAbdul-Rahim’s Facebook page lists him as founder and director of the Al Tawhid Counseling Network. He attended the HBCU, Lincoln University in Pa., and graduated from Essex Community College in Maryland. Nick MosbyMosby served on the Baltimore City Council from 2010 to 2016. He was appointed by Mayor Catherine Pugh to his current 40th District Delegate seat once occupied by Barbara Robinson (who moved on to the Maryland Senate), when Pugh’s previous appointee Gary Brown Jr., was indicted on campaign finance violations. Mosby ran unsuccessfully to be Baltimore mayor in 2016. He is a graduate of Baltimore Polytechnic Institute and Tuskegee Institute, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. He is married to Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby. Melissa WellsWells, a longtime community advocate in the 40th, is a labor leader, who is a member of the Baltimore Washington Building Trades Unions. She is a financial security specialist. Frank M. Conaway, Jr.Conaway was elected to the Maryland House of Delegates representing the 40th in 2006. He is a member of the House Judiciary Committee and in 2014, he was the first Maryland legislator to sponsor a bill to require body-worn cameras for police officers. Conaway holds a B.A. degree in business administration from Sojourner-Douglass College. He produced dozens of controversial YouTube videos on subjects ranging from the Book of Revelations, to Rubik’s Cube, and peddled several of his books, allegedly using the mailroom of Baltimore’s Municipal Post Office. He resigned from that job in 2014 and the videos were taken down. He is a member of the Conaway political family. Sarah MatthewsMatthews, a native of the South side of Chicago, has established herself as a neighborhood activist in Bolton Hill. She is a former member of the Baltimore City Democratic Central Committee. She has run unsuccessfully for several Baltimore elected offices over the years. Timothy MercerMercer, a contractor has run unsuccessfully for multiple Baltimore elected offices. Latia HopkinsHopkins is a political organizer, who has worked on several Democratic campaigns around the state. She is a graduate of Frostburg State University in Western Maryland, where she earned Bachelor’s degrees in Political Science, and Law and Society, as well as a Masters degree in Education. She is the Mid-Atlantic regional director for Young Democrats of America. Terrell Boston-SmithBoston-Smith began working as youth community organizer when he was a student at Baltimore City College High School. He pursued higher education as an undergrad at Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire and graduate student at Baruch College, City University of New York. He served as campaign manager for Del. Cory McCray’s successful run for the 45th House of Delegates seat and was political director for Brian Frosh’s successful campaign for Maryland Attorney General. He is a member of the Boston political family of Baltimore. By Sean Yoes, Baltimore AFRO Editor, firstname.lastname@example.orgLarge swaths of the 40th Legislative District of Baltimore City are plagued by poverty and violence (both epicenters of the 2015 uprising, Mondawmin and Penn North are in the 40th). However, it is also the home of venerable Druid Hill Park, four institutions of higher education (Coppin State University, Baltimore City Community College, the University of Maryland School of Law and the University of Maryland at Baltimore), some of the most aesthetically beautiful neighborhoods in the city, as well as some of the most historically significant Black communities. Here is the most complete list available of Black candidates vying for the three seats to represent the 40th in the Maryland House of Delegates. All the candidates are Democrats.Clockwise from top left: Frank Conaway Jr.; Nick Mosby; Westley West; Melissa Wells; Latia Hopkins; Timothy Mercer; Anees Abdul-Rahim; Terrell Boston Smith. (Courtesy Photo) Westley WestWest, is Pastor of Faith Empowered Ministries, at 1900 Walbrook Ave., in West Baltimore. He gained some notoriety as an activist during the uprising of 2015.He ran unsuccessfully for Baltimore City Council in 2016.
By Rev. Dorothy S. Boulware, AFRO Managing EditorWith one movement, history is made in myriad ways with the announced retirement of current pastor, the Rev. Dr. Charles E. Coger and the appointment of his daughter, the Rev. Myeskia Coger Watson as the first woman, and only the sixth pastor of 122-year-old Mt. Ararat Baptist Church.When she ascends the pulpit, Dec. 2, to preach her first sermon as pastor-elect, she will stand in awe of the fact that she also preached her initial sermon when she was 19, in the same place.“I am honored and humbled,” Rev. Watson told the AFRO. “It’s amazing to be in this place at this time and I’m so grateful to God.”The Rev. Myeskia Coger Watson is setting the standard as pastor-elect for Mt. Ararat Baptist Church, where her father, the Rev. Dr. Charles E. Coger, currently pastors.Courtesy photoIt is a place she initially resisted when her father was appointed pastor, because she had nothing but love and affection for what had been their home church for her entire life until that point.“I told my family I was not leaving New Psalmist and I was so glad I was 18 and could drive myself,” she said. “I loved New Psalmist and I thought it would be my church forever.”But she loved and supported her parents’ ministry at Mt. Ararat, something she continues with this new move.“We’ve been helping out for about four years now,” Rev. Watson said, in the light of health challenges her father has met with great success, with the help of the Lord. “And in the past two, we’ve been preaching on Sundays and conducting Wednesday Bible studies,” she said. So, the transition is expected to be as smooth as a transition can be.Rev. Watson is not new to being a pastor since she was blessed to establish her own congregation, Living in Love Ministries, which she has led while helping out at Mt. Ararat.“We are still in ministry with ‘Living in Love’ and are anticipating what God will do as we go forward together,” she said.As are the members of Mt. Ararat, some of whom have been in the fellowship for many years.One of them is Deacon E. Lee Lassiter, who counts his membership in decades, at least five.“I share the excitement and optimism of other members of Mt. Ararat as the church moves forward under new leadership,” he said, adding, “expanding our tradition of lifting up and serving God and meeting the needs of the people.His historical view is rich.“Each of Mt. Ararat’s pastors has stressed sound doctrine, spiritual and physical growth, sacrifice and service in interest of furthering God’s work on earth,” Deacon Lassiter said. “We are on the brink of moving to higher heights in all these areas under Pastor Watson’s leadership.”He recalled that Mt. Ararat was the first African-American church to move into the Mondawmin area and that it became and remains a kind of religious “flagship.”“Proclaiming itself ‘The End of Your Search for a Friendly Church,’ Mt. Ararat opened its doors at the current site the first Sunday in February 1955 with a small band of courageous members still on board,” according to the church’s website. But it was not to remain small.“It drew members from all denominations simply because it was the only of its kind,” he said. “And I’ve been blessed to witness the positive impact on and service to the city’s religious community and the community surrounding the church.”With no disagreement from the Rev. Dr. A.C.D. Vaughn, who is marking the moment and happy to see history being made.“I’m going to be excited every time I drive down Gwynns Falls Parkway and see Myeskia’s name on the marquee,” the long time pastor of Sharon Baptist Church said.“Not just the first time, but every time.”Known as the “Baptist Bishop,” Rev. Vaughn said the appointment of Rev. Watson is a sign of hope for other women in the ministry, especially Baptist women.“These women have worked hard in other vineyards, some for little compensation; they’ve prepared themselves professionally and academically,” he said.“It’s only fair they be given equal opportunity to pastor within the denomination in which they’ve grown up and learned ministry.”Rev. Vaughn said Rev. Watson had done a “massive job of ministry” in assisting her father and being supportive of his ministry, and was thus deserving of this opportunity for leadership.“The day of the woman is here and everyone might as well realize it,” he said.“The women need to know that this is no longer impossible for them. And in that Rev. Watson is setting a standard.”
Social media sensation Cameron Dallas has signed a recording contract in partnership with Columbia, Variety has learned. A top influencer, the 23-year-old boasts 20.8 million followers on Instagram, 16.5 million on Twitter and 5.7 million subscribers on YouTube and starred in the 2016 Netflix series “Chasing Cameron.”As recently as last week, Dallas was spotted on the Los Angeles campus of Sony Music, of which Columbia Records is a subsidiary. Meetings with label brass about the direction of his music were on the agenda, according to sources.A California native, Dallas first came to prominence in 2012 on Vine and eventually grew a following that landed him among the top stars of the now defunct Twitter platform. On Instagram, he currently holds an A grade and is ranked 93rd by social media metrics site Social Blade. Columbia Records is one of the oldest labels in the U.S. and is home to such superstar acts as Bruce Springsteen, Adele, Beyonce and John Mayer.Dallas is the latest signing under new Columbia chairman Ron Perry, who joined the company in January. Other recent arrivals include Diplo and “The Four” alum Zhavia, who appears on “Welcome to the Party” from “Deadpool 2” alongside Diplo, French Montana and Lil Pump. ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Popular on Variety
Popular on Variety These animations are then integrated into interactive scenes, where kids can tap on characters to have them move. Osmo CEO Pramod Sharma admitted during a recent interview with Variety that the company isn’t quite ready to give kids full-blown animation tools just yet, but said that the company wanted to eventually move in that direction.“Osmo Super Studio Mickey Mouse & Friends” is available for $19 for anyone who already owns a Osmo base. A kit including the base and the book costs $79. Versions featuring Disney princesses and Pixar characters are scheduled to be released in the coming weeks. Augmented reality app maker Osmo has teamed up with Disney for a new line of character-driven animation sets dubbed “Osmo Super Studio.” First in line to be released is “Osmo Super Studio Mickey Mouse & Friends,” which allows kids to draw Mickey Mouse characters and then have them get animated by an iPad.Osmo Super Studio is based on the same technology as other Osmo sets: A dedicated iPad stand with a clip-on mirror allows the iPad’s front-facing camera to monitor what’s happening on the table in front of the device. Osmo apps then analyze those visuals, and incorporate them into game play and more.In the case of the Super Studio, children place a special sketch book with prepared shapes in front of the iPad. The app then allows them to pick certain scenes, and instructs them to use the book and a special dry-erase marker to draw characters, which subsequently appear on the screen.Osmo uses a couple of interesting tricks to make these hand-drawn characters come to life: The app may for instance instruct kids to draw an ear first, and then a hand, which makes it possible for the app to identify individual body parts. That information is then used to animate characters, or populate a scene with hand-drawn flowers and butterflies. ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15
The first season of ‘Journeys of Faith’ will feature ten episodes, posting every Wednesday. Episodes will be available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, TuneIn, Spotify, Stitcher and the ABC News app. ABC News has in recent months placed new emphasis on podcasting, which has gained new interest from a variety of media companies as consumers flock to the format. Pew Research found in July that 44% of Americans ages 12 and older said they have ever listened to a podcast, according to Edison Research and Triton Digital survey data, while 26% said they have listened to a podcast in the past month, compared with just 9% in 2008.ABC News in late March launched a podcast called “Start Here,” a twenty-minute session hosted by Brad Mielke that taps ABC News personnel to offer insight on events shaping the world. The Disney-owned news outlet has experimented with new kinds of digital audio for a few years, launching an ABC News audio channel on the ABC News app about three years ago.Faris in July said she would leave her roles on “The View” and a co-anchor on the weekend edition of “Good Morning America” to focus on doing stories of greater consequence. “This is a passion project of mine so I’m incredibly involved in the process,” she said. “It’s a new venture and the team helping put this together has been incredible – we’re all learning together and committed to its success.”Booking guests for the venture has been easy, she added. “I’m finding there’s a real hunger to talk about one’s personal faith.” Popular on Variety ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 The podcast has conjured up memories from her past. “I’m going back to my college radio days, so it’s been a treat. I’ve long maintained that TV can be cumbersome to produce – it’s a lot of effort from many, for a few moments on screen,” she said. ” In the audio space, especially in the podcast format, there’s something so intimate about the medium and the conversations you’re able to have. Come as you are, don’t worry about your exterior. We’re talking about the interior: matters of your heart and mind.”She is eager to speak to people of different beliefs. “We’ll speak with those practicing Christianity, Orthodox Judaism, Islam and Atheism,” she said, adding: “This podcast is an opportunity to listen and learn from one another – respecting that faith is the core and foundation for so many, yet no two faith journeys look alike. I hope listeners will also be encouraged and inspired by the stories.”Faris wants listeners “to feel like they’re a fly on the wall and right there in the room with us.” Subsequent episodes will be released on Wednesdays. The first season will feature ten. Paula Faris recently served as one of the co-hosts on ABC’s “The View.” Now she’s about to examine a different kind of perspective.The ABC News journalist will launch a new podcast, “Journeys of Faith,” during which she will interview influential people and talk to them about how they’ve used faith and spirituality at crucial moments in their lives. The first three episodes will be released Wednesday, November 14 and feature interviews with “Good Morning America” co-anchor Robin Roberts; country-music artists Luke Bryan and Hillary Scott; and political commentator Ben Shapiro. Other first-season guests who have been slated include Kellyanne Conway, Tim Tebow, Reza Aslan, Sam Harris, Marla Maples, Sherri Shepherd and Melissa Joan Hart.“My faith is my rock and foundation. It’s been the glue of my marriage when I wanted to walk, it’s grounded me in triumph, and carried me through tragedy. I honestly don’t know where I’d be without it, and I know there are so many who feel the same way,” Faris said via an email exchange. She added: “In covering news and sports the better part of 25 years, I know firsthand we just don’t talk to our interviewees about their faith. Tell us about your latest project. Tell us about that controversial statement you made. Tell us about that game-winning catch. But, just don’t tell us about God, Allah or Jesus, etc. There’s no mainstream media platform that’s giving people the platform and opportunity to talk about what they believe and why they believe it. That is, until now.”