1.Taste of Soul 

2018 was the thirteenth year for Taste of Soul, now known as Los Angeles’ “largest street festival”. This year, the Taste of Soul nation had the opportunity to experience music from the sounds of four different stages. First, the Hyundai Soundstage featured artist Ginuwine, Chante Moore, Kurtis Blow, Teddy Riley, Blackstreet, Melanie Fiona and the StarQuest Singing competition. The stage was hosted by Roland Martin with DJ B-Hen on the ones and twos. Attendees were also entertained by the 102.3 Radio Free KJLH Stage which featured artists Jussie Smollet, En Vogue, Macy Gray, Ready for the World and more. The third stage, sponsored by 94.7 the Wave featured Sister Sledge, Jody Watley, DW3, Chosen Gospel Recovery Group and more. Finally, the Brenda Marsh-Mitchell Gospel Stage sponsored by McDonald’s, brought praise and worship to the streets of Crenshaw with performances by local choirs, Donald Lawrence, Ricky Dillard, Deitrick Haddon and more. 

2.The Hyundai Giveaway 

Hyundai has been a partner with the Los Angeles Sentinel and Taste of Soul for three years and this is the second year that it has hosted a car giveaway at the L.A. auto show. The car company, based in Seoul, South Korea is the sixth largest in the world, and has its US headquarters in Orange County. The winner was Kyle Kyson- Clark.  

3.The Midterm Election Results 

For those who may have secretly thought their vote doesn’t matter, results of a recent post election survey showed that African American voters made a huge impact on this year’s outcome. According to members the African American Voter Registration, Education and Participation organization, blacks “powered the Blue Wave” here in California. They also helped flip highly competitive seats in the House of Representatives from Republicans to Democrats, AAVREP said.  

“African American voters in California played a significant role in helping Democrats win the majority in the House of Representatives and oust long term Republicans during the midterm elections,” explained AAVREP team members.  

4.March for Our Lives 

“Not one more,” was the mission statement for March for Our Lives. 

“We cannot allow one more person to be killed by senseless gun violence. We cannot allow one more person to experience the pain of losing a loved one. We cannot allow one more family to wait for a call or text that never comes. We cannot allow the normalization of gun violence to continue. We must create a safe and compassionate nation for our youth to grow up in.” 

The March for Our Lives was a student-led demonstration in support of stronger gun violence prevention measures. It took place in Washington, D.C. on March 24, 2018, The event followed the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018. 

5.The Legacy Museum 

Part of a statue depicting chained people is on display at the National Memorial for Peace and Justice, a new memorial to honor thousands of people killed in racist lynchings, Sunday, April 22, 2018, in Montgomery, Ala. The national memorial aims to teach about America’s past in hope of promoting understanding and healing. It’s scheduled to open on Thursday. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Over the course of two days in April, thousands of supporters participated in the grand opening ceremony of the Equal Justice Initiative’s (EJI) unveiling of the National Memorial for Peace and Justice and the Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration in Montgomery, AL.  

Individuals of all races traveled from different parts of the country, near and far, to attend the two-day truth telling celebration, pay homage to their ancestors, reconcile horrific acts against humanity and properly heal a haunted past to rebuilding a new vision for America.    

5.Karen Bass Elected to CBC  

On November 28, Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA-37) was elected chair of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) for the 116th Congress. Congresswoman Bass will be the 26th chair of the CBC, and the eighth woman to hold the position.  

“From her days in the California General Assembly where she became the first African-American woman in U.S. history to lead a state legislative body, to her work in Congress to address both domestic and international issues affecting people of African descent, Congresswoman Bass has demonstrated tried and true leadership,” said outgoing CBC Chair Cedric L. Richmond (D-LA-02). “I commend Congresswoman Bass on becoming the new chair of the Congressional Black Caucus. There’s much work to be done next Congress to ensure equality and justice for African Americans and other marginalized communities, and I am confident Congresswoman Bass will continue to provide strong leadership in this regard.” 

6.Maxine Waters Reelected 

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (courtesy photo)

This year, during her reelection campaign, Congresswoman Maxine Waters denounced indiscriminate racist killings and profiling’s of Blacks across country, horrific massacre of Jewish people in Pennsylvania synagogue and attempted pipe bomb assassination sent to several democratic colleagues.  

7.Meghan Markle Becomes A Duchess 

Although the actress has received heavy ridicule over her past, many people of color and millennials saw Meghan Markle as a “true life Cinderella,” using #IssaRealLifeFairytale and #SecureTheCrown on social media. Despite the mixed views on the couple’s relationship and or relevance, one thing no one can deny, is the royal wedding’s display of love and celebration of Black culture! 

On Saturday, May 19, millions of Americans tuned in to watch Markle and Prince Harry tie the knot at the St. George’s Chapel at the Windsor Castle in England. Some people even hosted royal wedding viewing parities. 

8.”Roseanne” Gets Canceled 

In this Jan. 8, 2018, file photo, Roseanne Barr participates in the “Roseanne” panel during the Disney/ABC Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour in Pasadena, Calif. ABC canceled its hit reboot of “Roseanne” on Tuesday, May 29, 2018, following star Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet that referred to former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett as a product of the Muslim Brotherhood and the “Planet of the Apes.” (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

In May of this year, ABC cancelled the Roseanne show, a remake of the highly popular 80s sitcom. The move came after the show’s star Roseanne Barr let out an insulting tweet about former Obama aide Valerie Jarrett, likening her to the offspring of “the Muslim Brotherhood and Planet of the Apes.” 

9. The Starbucks Boycott

In this April 15, 2018, file photo, demonstrators protest outside the Starbucks cafe in Philadelphia where two black men were arrested three days earlier for waiting inside without ordering anything. (AP Photo/Ron Todt, File)

Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson were asked to leave a Starbucks in Philidelphia after one was denied access to the bathroom. They were arrested by police minutes after they sat down to await a business meeting. 

The arrest was recorded by cellphone and triggered protests, boycott threats and debate over racial profiling, or what has been dubbed “retail racism.” It proved a major embarrassment for Starbucks, which has long cast itself as a company with a social conscience. 

Nelson and Robinson settled with Starbucks for an undisclosed sum and an offer of a free college education. They also reached a deal with the city of Philadelphia for a symbolic $1 each and a promise from officials to establish a $200,000 program for young entrepreneurs