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Superstar Beyoncé Knowles-Carter received the prestigious Humanitarian Award at the BET Awards on Sunday. Former first lady Michelle Obama presented the night's biggest honor to the singer. 

"No matter how big the stages get, I know my girl isn't satisfied unless she's sharing all that shine she has with the next generation," Mrs.

Obama said. "She's always turning up, looking out, and making us all a little bigger, better, a little more fierce. And she's doing it all while staying devoted to her children and the loved ones she holds dear. So to my girl, I just want to say, you inspire me. You inspire all of us."

Beyoncé, who received the award in recognition of her philanthropic work through her BeyGOOD initiative, used her acceptance speech to acknowledge those who have been protesting against police brutality and racial inequality.

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"I want to dedicate this award to all of my brothers out there, all of my sisters out there inspiring me—marching and fighting for change. Your voices are being heard, and you're proving to our ancestors that their struggles were not in vain," she said.

The "Love on Top" singer used the platform to directly appeal to viewers to vote.

"I'm encouraging you to continue to take action. Continue to change and dismantle a racist and unequal system. We have to continue to do this together," she said. "Continue to fight for each other and lift each other up, because there are people banking on us staying at home during the local elections and primaries happening in states across the country. We have to vote like our life depends on it, because it does."

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Beyoncé's humanitarian efforts have covered a range of issues that are prominent in minority communities across America.
 
In April, she announced that her BeyGOOD charity would collaborate with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and his Start Small campaign to donate $6 million in relief funds to African-American essential workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic.

This past Mother's Day weekend, the star teamed up with her mother, Tina Knowles Lawson, to launch the the #IDIDMYPART campaign to promote coronavirus testing in minority communities in their hometown of Houston. 

Earlier this month, she posted an open letter on her website addressed to Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, asking him to bring charges against the police officers who fatally shot Breonna Taylor inside her home. 

And on Juneteenth the singer, who is fond of surprise releases, dropped her latest song, "Black Parade." Proceeds from the new single will   benefit BeyGOOD's Black Business Impact Fund to support Black-owned small businesses, according to Beyoncé's website.

News Source: CBS News

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Not even COVID-19 stops participation in the Dominican Republics presidential election

Despite the suffocating heat and the COVID-19, thousands of people in the Dominican Republic came out to vote to elect their next president.

When the desire to vote seizes the Dominicans There are no coronaviruses that discourage them, they put on their best protections to exercise the right to vote, and they even appear at the electoral college before 07:00 in the morning, the official time of the start of the general elections.

Dominicans’ passion for politics always translates into high participation rates – it was 69 percent in the 2016 elections – and this Sunday the electoral colleges they are full, in some cases in order and with separation, but in others with crowds.

Dominican vote with latex gloves to prevent COVID-19. EFE photo

Fernando Pimentel was the first to vote at Colegio La Salle in Santo Domingo, with some delay over the scheduled time.

First of a row in which the distance between people has been scrupulously observed, he has come to vote with mask and face screen. “It is uncomfortable” because “it is reality” and you have to adapt to it, he says.

Fearless but with caution

Fernando believes that perhaps older people are somewhat withdrawn due to the COVID-19, which is reaching record numbers of contagion and already has 37,425 infected, 1,241 in the last day, as well as a total of 794 dead, “but the young people are very excited” and believes that many will come to the call of the ballot boxes despite these figures.

Emmanuel Martínez has also risen early; “It is better to come early,” he tells Efe, unconcerned about the possibility of contagion and convinced that there will be a high turnout because “people want to vote,” taking the appropriate precautionary measures.

Poster about the sanitary measures to take in the electoral colleges of the Dominican Republic. EFE photo

Among them the use of gel or hydroalcoholic solution, the only ethyl product allowed on this day, since the authorities enact a sort of dry law to hold elections to avoid alcohol consumption.

The mask “It is part of the uniform,” says Alberto Lerux, attending to Efe while he waits his turn. “People want to go vote for there to be a change,” so they also bet on high participation in the elections.

Clari Pimentel thinks the same. He coronavirus “It is an ongoing concern, you try to protect yourself and get out. But we understand that just as we do other everyday things, we have to go out to vote as well. ”

Mass assistance

Attendance at schools is massive, although the impeccable organization and physical distance observed in the early hours, especially in voting centers in the most affluent areas, has been diminishing with the progress of the day, especially in the centers of voting of the most populous sectors.

They have formed crowds, especially, outside the schools, and not just to enter the venues.

Street food stalls have done more business this Sunday than in the entire quarantine, and the activity on the streets where there are electoral centers is unusual for a Sunday day, even more so in times of pandemic.

Even so, Welin Ramírez, president of the table at the Liceo Benito Juárez, in the Cristo Rey sector, highlights in declarations to Efe the civility and education of the people when they go to vote, duly protected, all with their masks and many also with gloves.

The morning is passing in a “very quiet” way, he tells Efe. “There are many attendees, we are surprised, unlike the municipal” held in March, in which there was much less participation.

If COVID-19 doesn’t dare voters, neither does suffocating hot Caribbean that Dominicans They stoically endure while waiting to access the voting classrooms, like Mr. Cruz, who understands “that this is a duty of every citizen” and it must be given due importance “as thinking entities that we are”.

In that same row, Maria Estela Figuereo is the only person who does show some concern about the virus: “I am afraid of catching it, because lately there has been a lot of contagion”, he admits, although he clarifies that he considers “an obligation to come to vote” .

Candidates and crowds

If moments and places of absolute agglomerationThese have occurred upon the arrival of the main candidates for the Presidency in their respective electoral centers and, curiously, they have done so in the same order that the polls give them in terms of voting intention.

Businessman Luis Abinader of the Modern Revolutionary Party (PRM), leader in the polls; the former Minister of Public Works, Gonzalo Castle, of the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD) and dolphin of the current president, Danilo Medina, and the former president Leonel Fernandez, dissident of the ruling party and now presented by La Fuerza del Pueblo (FP).

About 7.5 million voters, almost half a million of them abroad, are summoned to the polls to also elect the country’s vice president, 32 senators and 190 deputies. If a second round is necessary it will be held on July 26.

With information from EFE

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