Friends of Whitney Houston allege the singer was molested as a child by her cousin Dee Dee Warwick in a documentary that premiered Thursday at the Cannes Film Festival. Houston's longtime assistant Mary Jones tells filmmaker Kevin Macdonald that the late singer told her that Warwick, the sister of Dionne Warwick, molested her at a young age. Houston's brother Gary Garland-Houston also says he was molested between the ages of seven and nine by a female family member, and says his sister was abused too. Dee Dee Warwick, who was 18 years older than Houston, died in 2008. The allegations were made in the documentary "Whitney," which was made with the cooperation of Houston's family. The revelations, which come about three-quarters of the way into "Whitney," immediately cast a new light on the troubled life of Houston. Jones claims that the experience made Houston question her own sexuality and contributed to her late-life drug problems. The singer died at the age of 48 in 2012 from what was ruled an accidental drowning in a bathtub. A coroner's report into her death cited heart disease and drug use as contributing factors. She never spoke publicly about her own alleged abuse. "We always wanted our film to be a corrective to that tabloid story," said producer Simon Chinn. "These are specific revelations that I think will get people to a deeper understanding of who Whitney was and in many ways redeem her as a person." Dee Dee Warwick was the niece of Houston's mother, Cissy Houston. The Warwick sisters sometimes sang in Cissy Houston's gospel group, the Drinkard Singers. Dee Dee Warkick, who was twice nominated for a Grammy Award, sang backup for Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin and others. "Whitney," which is to be released in theaters July 7, suggests that the alleged incidents of abuse took place while Cissy Houston was touring. Houston, who had a daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, with Bobby Brown, is said to have insisted on taking Bobbi on tour with her. Bobbi Kristina died 2015. She was found unresponsive in a bathtub and died after being in a coma for six months. Representatives for Dionne Warwick didn't immediately return messages Thursday.

(Image: AP: Rapper T.I. in file image from 27 January 2018)

The rapper T.I. was arrested early on Wednesday as he tried to enter his gated community outside Atlanta and was charged with disorderly conduct, public drunkenness and simple assault — but the artist's lawyer called it a wrongful arrest. Henry County Deputy Police Chief Mike Ireland said T.I. was arrested around 04:30 AM after he got into an argument with a security guard. Media reports say the Grammy-winning artist, whose real name is Clifford Harris, had lost his key and the guard wouldn't let him into the community. Ireland said T.I. and a friend were arrested. The rapper has been released on bail. T.I.'s attorney, Steve Sadow, said in a statement that the rapper was "wrongfully arrested". He claims the guard was asleep when his client arrived at the guardhouse and it took "some time to wake up the sleeping guard". Sadow said T.I. identified himself and sought entry, but the guard refused. The rapper contacted his wife, who confirmed that her husband should be allowed inside the community. "The guard continued to refuse entry without justification," Sadow said in a statement, referring to T.I. as Tip. "Words were exchanged and apparently the guard and/or a supervisor called the police. When the police arrived, they were not interested in hearing Tip's side of the story and wrongfully chose to end the situation by arresting Tip." The rapper served about seven months in prison in 2009 after his arrest on federal gun charges. He also spent about 10 months in federal prison on a probation violation in 2010 after he was arrested on drug charges in Los Angeles. The drug arrest violated his probation — he had been ordered not to commit a crime and not to illegally possess any controlled substances — and led to an 11-month prison sentence at an Arkansas prison. T.I. is one of the biggest names in hip-hop, with multiple platinum-selling albums and singles, production credits and roles in films like "ATL" and "American Gangster". Get the latest local and international news straight to your mobile phone for free: Download the Loop News Caribbean app on Google Play Store:http://bit.ly/GetALoop Download the Loop News Caribbean app on the App Store:http://bit.ly/GetiLoop


Bonnie Leonce can speak with her hands.

Her signature is her signing. But Bonnie Leonce is more than an interpreter, she's a daughter, sister, wife, mother and friend. Today Bonnie turns 43 years old and by her beauty, there's no doubt that she's got that black girl magic. Loop wanted to surprise one of Barbados' most hardworking interpreters with a birthday feature and her husband Ricardo,affectionately called 'Ricky' by her, was all in. Seemingly like they weretogether forever, especially in this day and age when marriages don't last as long as a snoconein thehot sun outside the new River Van Stand, it was a breath of fresh air to hear him say, "We met when I was 11; she was 13, so it is now 30 years that we have known each other and been married, December will be 20." Wow! Black love and black girl magic, Bonnie's blessed is all we were thinking. Keen to chat about his better half, he helped shed a little light on Bonnie beyond what people see in the little box in the bottom right of their television screens. He shared with us five things that many people may not know about his wife. Counting them off on his fingers, he said, "(1) Hates mediocrity. (2) Loves cou couand salt fish.(3) Loves a good pudding and souse.(4) Very protective of family and close friends. (5) Loves music especially a good bass line." [related node_id='e96fb8d7-fa93-445f-9306-489b20d5c223'] Bonnie is the brains behind Signature Interpretations, constantly advocating for 'Equality...through the power of language'. She has taught hundreds of persons to sign over the years and she's a very fun and interactive teacher. This led Loop to ask how is Bonnie at home. What are some of the lessons she is teaching their three children -Gabrielle is almost 18, Alex is 16 and Brandon is 14? With a smile, he said that he's happy she has taught theirdaughter and sons, "To consider other people's situations, to be mannerly and polite, to try to always have a good attitude, and to be thankful in all things." And Bonnie has been like a mother to many in Barbados' deaf community - when they cut she bleeds, when they win, she wins; she feels their pain and shecelebrates their joys. Bonnie's family is comprised of her blood relatives and her extended non-hearing family. The way she interacts with many of the deaf adults, it's like she's grown with them from young. Bonnie is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to fighting for the rights of the deaf in Barbados, and if she has her way, she'll fight and be victorious not only for the deaf here at home, but throughout the Caribbean in the not too distant future too. Happy Birthday, Bonnie!

Try this delicious Lemon and Garlic Beef recipe, courtesy My Life Cookbook: Lemon & Garlic Beef Ingredients 2 lbs beef cut into cubes (I used stew meat) 4 cloves garlic, crushed 1 lemon, zest and juice 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper 1/4 cup parsley, minced Instructions Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Spray a large piece of foil and set aside. Toss beef cubes, garlic, salt, pepper, lemon zest and the juice of half a lemon. Add to the foil and fold into a packet. Place on the middle rack of the oven and cook for 3 hours. Take out of the oven and squeeze remaining half of lemon and sprinkle parsley on top. Serve immediately. Enjoy!


It is time more is done for manufacturers in Barbados. The call frompresidentof the Barbados Manufacturers' Association (BMA) Robert Noel. Noel wants whoever takes office as the new governmenton May 25,to give support to the sector, similar to that given to tourism and the financial services sector. [image_gallery] Theopening ceremonyof Barbados Manufacturers' Exhibition (BMEX) launched on Friday, was the forum at which Noel made his call. He stressed that he is committed to seeing the growth ofBMEX, which has become a staple of the Barbadian calendar.BMEX he emphasized, showcases the resilience and commitment of Barbadian people and manufactures. This is why he believes they need all the support they can get, as the sector provides jobs and brings in foreign exchange which the country “desperately” needs at this time. [related node_id='7119274f-79d8-4be1-8255-5f8af9e44b10'] “Our Manufacturers continue to press on even as they have been significantly impacted by such measures as the National Social Responsibility Levy and the two percent foreign exchange fee. In addition, the purchasing power of ordinary Barbadians has been weakened and we are faced with falling demand for our products," he asserted. Noel noted that this has had an impact on companies’ profits, especially those companies which depend heavily on the local market.In spite of this,companies have been doing their best to maintain employment levels, explore new markets and develop innovative strategies to remain competitive he added. The BMA he stressed, has and will continue to do their part to ensure that the manufacturing sector thrives. It is the aim of the association in 2018 to broaden the services offered and to ensure that all Barbadian manufacturers know about the benefits of joining the association. Get the latest local and international news straight to your mobile phone for free: Download the Loop News Caribbean app on Google Play Store:http://bit.ly/GetALoop Download the Loop News Caribbean app on the App Store:http://bit.ly/GetiLoop

White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow speaks during a television interview outside the West Wing of the White House, in Washington, Friday, May 18, 2018. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Sunday that the United States and China are stepping back from a possible trade war after two days of talks that produced "meaningful progress." Despite not getting China to agree to trim its overall trade surplus with America by a specific amount, Mnuchin said the U.S. team did get a number of commitments on a framework for reducing the deficit over time, including big increases in purchases of farm products and a doubling of purchases of U.S. energy products. "We are putting the trade war on hold," Mnuchin said on "Fox News Sunday." Because of the progress made in negotiations, Mnuchin said the Trump administration has agreed to put on hold punitive tariffs on up to $150 billion in Chinese products. China had promised to retaliate in a move that threatened a tit-for-tat trade war. Both Mnuchin and Larry Kudlow, head of the president's National Economic Council, said that while China did not agree to meet the $200 billion deficit reduction goal that President Donald Trump has discussed, the Chinese did agree to steps that could ultimately mean big cuts in the trade gap between the two nations. Mnuchin said the actions China has agreed to take as part of the framework the two countries have reached will result in boosting sales of U.S. farm products to China by 35 to 40 percent in this year alone. He said the agreement could result in doubling sales of U.S. energy products, which Mnuchin said could mean an increase in sales of U.S. energy products by $50 billion to $60 billion over the next three to five years. Mnuchin said Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross would soon be traveling to China to follow up on the discussions held Thursday and Friday in Washington. On Saturday, the White House issued a joint statement from world's two biggest economic powers in which the U.S. and China pledged to take measures to "substantially reduce" America's massive trade deficit. In the statement, Beijing committed to "significantly increase" its purchases of American goods and services, saying that the increase would "meet the growing consumption needs of the Chinese people and the need for high-quality economic development." The two countries also agreed on "meaningful increases" of U.S. agriculture and energy exports and greater efforts to increase trade in manufactured goods and services. The U.S. said it would send a team to China to work out the details. The statement, however, provided no dollar amounts on how much China might boost its purchases of American products. Kudlow, appearing Sunday on ABC, said that the $200 billion reduction target "interests the president a lot" and that both U.S. and Chinese negotiators have used that figure in the discussions "as a rough ballpark estimate." Last year, the U.S. had a record deficit with China in merchandise trade of $375 billion, the largest with any nation. Trade analysts said it was highly unlikely that China would ever agree to a numerical target for cutting the trade gap, but they said the talks likely were more successful in de-escalating trade tensions. "It is likely that this agreement, weak and vague though it is, will serve as grounds to at least delay the imposition of tariffs," said Eswar Prasad, an economist and trade expert at Cornell University. "The Trump administration seems eager to engineer at minimum a temporary peace with China to ensure a smooth run-up to the Kim-Trump summit in June," Prasad said, referring to the June 12 meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump campaigned in 2016 on a pledge to get tough on China and other U.S. trading partners. He views the massive U.S. trade deficit with China as evidence that Beijing is engaged in abusive trading practices and has outmaneuvered previous U.S. administrations. Last August, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer began an investigation into Beijing's strong-arm tactics to challenge U.S. technological dominance. These include outright cybertheft of U.S. companies' trade secrets and China's demands that American corporations hand over technology in exchange for access to the Chinese markets. Last month, the administration proposed tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese imports to protest the forced technology transfers. Trump later ordered Lighthizer to seek up to an additional $100 billion in Chinese products to tax. China responded by targeting $50 billion in U.S. products, including soybeans — a shot at Trump supporters in America's heartland. The prospect of an escalating trade war has shaken financial markets and alarmed business leaders. In a separate controversy, the Commerce Department last month blocked China's ZTE Corp. from importing American components for seven years, accusing the telecommunications company of misleading U.S. regulators after it settled charges last year of violating sanctions against Iran and North Korea. The ban amounted to a death sentence for ZTE, which relies heavily on U.S. parts, and the company announced that it was halting operations. A week ago, Trump tweeted that he was working with Chinese President Xi Jinping to put ZTE "back in business, fast." Media reports suggested that the U.S. was offering to swap a ZTE rescue for an end to proposed Chinese tariffs on U.S. farm products.


Events

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