On Friday, many of us awoke to the news that Anthony Bourdain, the rock star of the culinary world, had died by suicide. It was devastating news for millions of people from around the world and I must admit it made me tear-up. I was a fan of Bourdain, and referred to him on my Facebook post about his death as “Brother Anthony Bourdain”. I did so because while I enjoyed his blogs, and television shows where he documented his explorations of international culture and cuisine – it was his sensitivity for the human condition and his fierce advocacy for the less appreciated heroes of the food and dining world that made him so unique. In particular, Bourdain championed the “industrious Spanish-speaking immigrants” from Mexico, Nicaragua etc., who are cooks and chefs in many U.S. eateries, including upscale restaurants, regardless of cuisine. He wrote about how he considered them talented chefs and cooks who are underpaid and unrecognized even though they are the “backbone of the U.S. restaurant industry”. I loved that about him, but it was his storytelling that made him the celebrity that he was. Bourdain traveled around the world sampling and writing about food. He favored “peasant” foods over “haute cuisine”. He avoided Michelin rated restaurants in favor of street food — especially from developing countries. He was brash and outspoken and memorialized some of his travels with tattoos on his arms. He was also not afraid of controversy and shunned political correctness when it conflicted with his personal value system. While acknowledging that Americans eat too much meat, he was critical of activist vegetarians and vegans — saying that their lifestyle is rude to many of the inhabitants of the countries he visits. He called vegetarianism a “first world luxury”, but also admired vegetarians who did so for religious reasons or who put aside their vegetarianism when they travel in order to be respectful to their hosts. Agree with him or not, there was a consistent thread in everything he did — above all else, he was a human being who enjoyed, respected and appreciated the cultures and customs of other human beings. He was also insanely talented. Anthony Bourdain was the real deal and I, along with millions of other people, am a better and more adventurous person because he lived. #RIPAnthonyBourdain
The incomparable NAHREP at L’ATTITUDE (NAL) event in Miami. This year, the crowd will be bigger and the speakers will be even more impressive! If you are not familiar with some of the names, let me provide some additional color: Eddy Cue is a Cuban-American and the second-ranking executive at Apple, Orlando Bravo is the wealthiest Latino in America with a net worth of more than 8 billion dollars, and Priscila Almodovar is the only Latina CEO of a Fortune 100 company. Beyond this incredible list of headliners, the hallways at NAL will include…
Attorneys General from thirteen states sent a letter to the 100 largest corporations in America, advising them that they believe the ruling extends to private companies. In their letter, the group of Attorneys General stated their view that “racial discrimination in employment and contracting is all too common among Fortune 100 companies and other large businesses.”
The United States ruled that colleges could no longer consider race as a factor in admissions policies. There would be no need for affirmative action in college admissions if every young person had equal access to safe housing, healthcare, and quality educational resources during their formative years.