Nicki Minaj was fired as a waitress after she chased a customer down the street for taking her pen. Before she became famous, she was sacked from the "Red Lobster," after following a couple into the parking lot and swearing at them for stealing her pen.
"TINSEL CONFIDENTIAL" (NEW & OLD)
Despite low ratings, Halle Berry's "Extant," has been renewed. Even though the series isn't a ratings smash, it still has millions of viewers on demand and DVR.
Everyone is tight-lipped about Reggie Bush's life-time ban from the Playboy Mansion. To get banned from the mansion, you had to do something serious.
Before Althea Gibson and Venus & Serena, there was Ora Mae Washington (the daughter of slaves).
Washington was a tennis star of the late 20's and 30's and she was Venus and Serena rolled into one.
This Philadelphia native was the first "Queen of Tennis," yet she's lost in history and white players refused to play with her and against her.
She received racial taunts and threats on an daily basis but she held her head high and kept on winning.
She became the undefeated women's singles champion of the 'American Tennis Association,' from 1929-1935.
After she left tennis, Washington became a star center for the Philadelphia Tribunes. After basketball, she made a living as a housekeeper until her death in 1971.
She would later be inducted into the Basketball Women's Hall of Fame.
Before Stanley Kubrick (mysteriously) died after releasing "Eyes Wide Shut." A 1943 movie "Forces Occult," exposed the secret Illuminati long before any other movie.
A lot of freemason secrets were exposed.
The screenwriter was imprisoned and the producer and director were executed.
Before she met and married billionaire George Lucas, Mellody Hobson headed "Ariel Investments LLC," the largest African American money management and mutual fund company in U.S. history.
Hobson manages $9 billion in assets (majority Fortune 500 companies/oil companies, etc,) through Ariel Investments and she also manages the "Star Wars," empire.
If that isn't enough, Hobson is the current chairman of Dreamworks Animation and she serves on several boards, including the board of the "The Sundance Institute," and she's also the director of the Starbucks corporations and the Estee Lauder companies, Inc. When you serve on a board, you are usually paid a $100,000+ per board.
Hobson is so well respected in the finance industry that A-list celebrities (of all races) have approached her to inquire if she's interested in being their money/business manager. Thus far she has declined all requests.
This is the type of woman that young black women should idolize and emulate; not reality TV stars or female rappers.
"BLACK UNDERWORLD" (HIT MEN)
The above cousins are alleged to have been hit men for the Craig Petties (pictured below) gang which grew to a huge drug trafficking empire in 5 states.
MEMPHIS, Tenn.-Two Tennessee men were contract killers who kidnapped and murdered those who threatened a drug ring that imported cocaine from Mexico to be sold on the streets of U.S. cities, a federal prosecutor said Monday.
The Lewis's, who are cousins, are charged with being members of an organization led by Craig Petties that began as a neighborhood gang in 1995 and grew into an empire that imported drugs from Mexico to sell in Tennessee, Mississippi, Texas, Georgia and North Carolina.
The Lewis's face life in prison without parole if convicted on charges including racketeering-murder, conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and money laundering.
Petties fled to Mexico after his 2002 indictment and was placed on the U.S. Marshals’ 15 most wanted list. He was captured in January 2008 and extradited to Memphis, where he entered his guilty plea in December 2009.
Prosecutor Greg Gilluly said that the Lewises each killed one person who was a threat to Petties’ organization. Gilluly said the gang started with a few young men selling drugs in the Riverside neighborhood of Memphis and ended up working with the Sinaloa drug cartel in Mexico and being responsible for the deaths of at least six people.
Clinton Lewis, also known as “Goldie,” is charged with the kidnapping and murder of Marcus Turner in September 2006, under orders from Petties. Turner’s body was found in Olive Branch, Miss.
Martin Lewis, also known as “M,” is charged with killing Mario McNeal while McNeal was eating at a Memphis restaurant in March 2007.
When the officers arrived at Craig Petties house, they noticed a distinct smell.
Neighbors walk by the house in the upscale Milenio III neighborhood in Queretaro, Mexico
where Memphian Craig Petties was arrested
"I smoked a little marijuana to help ease my mind from the fact of my girlfriend cheating on me," Craig Petties said, according to an arrest report.
But this was more than one man dulling his sorrows with weed. In a bedroom closet of the home in southwest Memphis, officers found three duffel bags stuffed with marijuana. Six hundred pounds in all.
In the years that followed, authorities say, he moved to Mexico and, working with a branch of one of that country's most notorious cartels, operated a trafficking empire that funneled hundreds of kilos of cocaine and more than a ton of marijuana into Tennessee and other states.
The enterprise has been described as one of the largest and most ruthless such businesses ever uncovered in the region.
The story of Petties' alleged rise from petty drug peddler to international trafficker illustrates how the drug business works and Memphis' role as a distribution hub. It also shows how an enterprise built on American demand for marijuana and cocaine can spread violence and mayhem from Mexico all the way to middle-class Memphis suburbs.
While in Mexico -- a nation wracked by drug-related violence -- Petties allegedly was ordering the killings of rivals, suspected informants and others in the Memphis area.
The victims include a 28-year-old man who was shot and killed in his garage near Shelby Drive and Hacks Cross while his young children were in the home. Later, assassins executed two men in a car in Hickory Hill, and fatally wounded a man in an afternoon shooting in a restaurant.
In all, the 50-count federal indictment accuses Petties of conspiracy in six murders, as well as an assortment of racketeering charges.
The resulting federal case is a sprawling web involving dozens of defendants and witnesses.
Craig Petties was born in 1976 and came of age in the 1980s just as a new, highly addictive form of smokable cocaine called crack swept through inner cities throughout America. It touched the Riverview neighborhood where Petties grew up in a small, brick, shotgun-style house that his mother had bought for $17,000.
His section of West Dison Avenue was "a well-known drug trafficking area," wrote a police officer who arrested Petties in 1996.
Petties got into serious trouble early in life.
His first arrest came at 15, when he was charged with possession of a sawed-off shotgun. According to juvenile court records, he had set off the gun in his house when he and a friend were looking at it -- Petties called the police and said that he planned to use the gun to scare robbers who had taken his coat.
In the summer of 1993, when he was 16, he was twice arrested and accused of selling crack.
That December, days before his 17th birthday, he was arrested for attempted murder.
He had been with a group of young men who walked up to Eric Cole and started shooting, according to records. Cole was hit in the back, survived, and identified someone other than Petties as the one who shot him.
Still, authorities moved to try Petties as an adult. Records from the case offer a glimpse at his home life.
He was raised by his mother, Ever Jean Petties, and lived with one sister. The whereabouts of his father were unknown.
His mother reported in 1993 that she received $1,279 per month through her position as a foster parent and from her job at the board of education. That put the family income slightly above poverty level.
After Petties turned 18, his arrest record continued to grow. In 1998, for instance, he pleaded guilty to burglarizing railroad boxcars.
In March, Ever Jean Petties declined to be interviewed. "I'm not doing nothing on my son and I'm not talking about anything."
One significant person in this story doesn't show up in the juvenile court records.
According to U.S. Marshals spokesman Dave Oney, Petties is a half-brother of Paul Beauregard, better known as rapper DJ Paul of Three6 Mafia, a group that has sold millions of recordings.
It is known for songs on topics that include drug-trafficking and murder, the very activities Petties is accused of.
A publicist at Columbia Records said Beauregard wouldn't comment.
Petties belonged to a vast crowd of fatherless children growing up in low-income families in Memphis.
About 57 percent of children in Shelby County are born to unmarried parents, and absent fathers are common, a factor that can lead children into crime.
A psychologist, Robert M. Parr, had evaluated Petties a few months before the shooting. The teenager was 5 feet, 5 inches tall and weighed 130 pounds, Parr wrote, and was polite throughout testing.
"There is evidence of problems with impulse control, rebelliousness and negativism, as well as resentment of authority," Parr wrote.
He assessed Petties' verbal IQ at 77, a score low enough to be in the "borderline" range.
The adult court later sent Petties' shooting case back to juvenile court. Records do not show what the punishment was.
He attended Carver High School and probably didn't graduate, though the school system wouldn't release records.
Dropping out is common. In 2009, Carver's "cohort dropout rate" -- the number of students who leave somewhere between ninth and 12th grade -- was about one in three.
Those who drop out have few options in the legitimate work force. And there are tempting alternatives.
A history of trafficking
For decades, selling drugs has been an alternative way to earn money in Memphis.
By 2000, Petties was already involved in large-scale trafficking, Abe Collins, a special agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration, wrote in a 2002 affidavit.
In one case, Petties bought 10 kilograms of cocaine and 200 pounds of marijuana through middlemen who worked with Mexican couriers, he wrote.
Collins believed Petties had become the primary supplier of cocaine and marijuana in the Memphis area and that his partners included several close friends from his old neighborhood.
Collins also wrote that Petties was a leader of the Gangster Disciples street gang and that the murder of a past member of Petties' organization, Antonio Allen, remained unsolved.
Trucks play a key role in the drug business in Memphis. Most of the cocaine, marijuana and methamphetamine that arrives in Memphis is smuggled from Mexico and delivered on Interstate 40 or Interstate 55 by 18-wheelers or cars with secret compartments, said Keith Brown, resident agent in charge for the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Brown said Memphis is a major market for drug consumption.
"It's hard to measure," he said. "But there are thousands and thousands of pounds of marijuana coming into this city every year. There are thousands of kilos of cocaine. There are probably hundreds of kilograms of heroin."
There are specialists who handle transportation, others who build secret compartments in vehicles and houses, and others who launder money, he said.
Memphis is a distribution hub for regional drug markets like Jonesboro, Ark., but isn't a major multistate hub like Atlanta, Brown said.
And he said Mexican cartels act as suppliers to local groups but usually don't exert local control.
Records suggest Petties was making large amounts of money at a very young age.
In June 1999, the 22-year-old Petties signed mortgage papers for a $185,000 house in Hickory Hill. He quickly paid off the debt, becoming one of many in his circle who bought houses in the suburbs.
Drug-trafficker Ruben Laurel later would tell authorities that he and others had counted more than a million dollars on the pool table on the second floor of the house, according to an affidavit from Collins.
A federal indictment accuses Petties of using drug money to buy numerous luxury cars and trucks, including a Mercedes-Benz worth nearly $112,000. An earlier version of the indictment says he once bought a Bentley worth $339,000, and that he also purchased property in Las Vegas.
Petties isn't the only one alleged to have become rich from drug sales.
Forbes magazine estimates the net worth of Sinaloa cartel leader Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera at one billlion, making him one of the world's wealthiest individuals.
Petties allegedly worked with a branch of the Sinaloa cartel.
Colombians, not Mexicans, used to be on top of the Latin American drug-trafficking scene.
But law enforcement cracked down on a smuggling route favored in the 1980s -- shipping cocaine from South America to the Caribbean and south Florida.
Drug organizations now find it easier to smuggle cocaine from South America to Mexico, where it can be shipped over the 2,000-mile land border into the U.S. Other drugs, like marijuana and methamphetamine, can be produced in Mexico itself and shipped over the border.
Mexican cartels fear U.S. law enforcement because it is usually more competent and less corrupt than Mexican institutions, said Alex Posey, an analyst with the global intelligence company Stratfor.
That's why America hasn't seen mass cartel killings. "As long as you're not involved in the drug trade, it's in their best interest to leave you alone," he said. "Because the more scrutiny they draw upon themselves, the worse for business it is."
Source of trouble
A small conflict got Petties in big trouble. On April 4, 2001, police were called to a house in southwest Memphis by Petties' girlfriend, Latosha Booker.
Petties and Booker said they had been in an fight, but that everything was fine, according to an arrest report.
But there was a strong smell, and a marijuana cigarette was in plain sight on a coffee table, according to an affidavit by Collins. Other men emerged from elsewhere in the house, and the homeowner, Tino Harris, signed a consent to search form. Officers quickly found the 600 pounds of marijuana.
Petties and several others were arrested. An arrest sheet listed his occupation as "C-Trucking," presumably commercial trucking. His girlfriend was charged with simple assault, but it was never pursued.
A judge set bond at $250,000. Petties made it and was released. The state, for reasons that aren't clear, later dropped charges against Petties and some of the others. It wasn't the end of the matter.
In June 2002, officers searched a Bartlett property belonging to Harris and turned up 38 kilograms of cocaine.
In November 2002, the federal government filed an indictment against Petties under seal.
The federal system gives long sentences. But even before the indictment was filed, Petties had disappeared. He was later captured.
Sam Cooke was a friend of Johnny "Guitar" Watson. At the time, Watson couldn't decide if he wanted to be a singer or a pimp.
When he hit the road, Cooke hired his older brother Charles as a driver, this job kept him out of trouble.
One night, the car they were traveling in, ran out of gas in Memphis.
While waiting for Charles to come back from the service station, Cooke was approached by a white cop who told him to start pushing his car.
Cooke told him to move the car. Cooke added: 'My name is Sam Cook and I don't push cars." You push the fucking car!
You may not know who I am but your wife does. Go home and ask your wife about me.
The unmistakable sexual nature of that taunt makes you gasp, as does the fact that Cooke got away with it.
Was Sam Cooke Lisa Boyer's and Bertha Franklin's "chosen mark?" A private investigator was hired and was on the verge of finding out but the investigation was dropped-fearing the results would damage Cooke's reputation and legacy.