New Ghanaian Reality Show Seeks To Empower African Models

One woman is making a way for more Ghanaian models to strut onto the global runway.

Belinda Baidoo created a TV show to teach up-and-coming models how to make their place in the industry and highlight the beauty of African models. ?Belinda Baidoo Model Search Africa? featured 12 women competing for a chance to sign a contract with MSA Models in New York and B2 Models, founded by Baidoo.

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Baidoo, who?s signed to MSA Models herself, told HuffPost that she was inspired to create ?BBMSA? several years after winning Top Model Afrique, a local program, in 1998. The competition allowed her to work and travel around the world as a model. ?This was an opportunity that changed me completely as it boosted self-awareness, taught me to be independent and served as a medium where I felt accepted,? she said.

After returning back home to Ghana, Baidoo said she met a number of young girls who had what it took to become a model, but needed the tools and lessons to make it a career.

One hundred and twenty-eight women, ages 17 to 21, auditioned for the first season of ?BBMSA.? Participants had to be 5 feet 9 inches or taller with a ?humble, positive and hardworking attitude.? The 12 finalists, three of whom had minimal modeling experience prior to the show, had to complete a number of tasks in order to move on in the competition, including a casting call, a series of photo shoots using different techniques and a runway challenge.

The three judges, MSA Models fashion director Carri Dolce, Makeba Boateng of public relations consulting company MCPR, and Baidoo, eliminated the ladies over the course of 13 weeks. 

Baidoo announced this season?s winner, Afia Larry, on May 7.

Baidoo said since the show began airing in Ghana in March, she?s received a lot of positive feedback on social media. She tips her hat to ?America?s Next Top Model? creator Tyra Banks for paving the way for similar shows ? but wants to be clear that ?BBMSA? was created with the intention to ?encompass the working model experience through Africa?s rich formats and cultural lifestyles.?

Though ?BBMSA? is only available on GHOne TV, Baidoo hopes to bring the show to audiences globally, and clips from the season are available online. She?s looking forward to an even better second season and said that there?s a possibility that the show will eventually include male models.

??Belinda Baidoo Model Search Africa? reality show in the future will become a home to models from the diaspora and beyond who seek to be a part of a tool inspiring the generations of models on this continent,? she said. 

Baidoo said that the participants have become examples of how to confidently embrace your own beauty. She believes that the industry ? and beyond ? needs to see more of that from Africa.

?Africa as a whole has so much to offer. Our models, our fashion/clothing, our food, our music and dynamic cultures all make for amazing elements that need to be showcased more,? she said. ?Experienced models, I believe, must join the motion to come back to Africa to help educate our young people. I presume the worldwide fashion and modeling industry will undoubtedly enjoy the never-ending exploration of Africa?s abundant beauty and culture content.?

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Erick Erickson: Trump’s Russia Leak Is ‘Far Worse’ Than Reported

Conservative pundit Erick Erickson is vouching for the reliability of a least one source who revealed to Washington Post reporters that President Donald Trump disclosed ?highly classified information? while meeting with Russian officials last week. 

Erickson knows one of the sources and supports their decision to go to the media, he wrote Tuesday in a blog post for his website, The Resurgent.

?This is a real problem and I treat this story very seriously because I know just how credible, competent, and serious ? as well as seriously pro-Trump, at least one of the sources is,? Erickson wrote.

?You can call these sources disloyal, traitors, or whatever you want,? he added. ?But please ask yourself a question ? if the President, through inexperience and ignorance, is jeopardizing our national security and will not take advice or corrective action, what other means are available to get the President to listen and recognize the error of his ways??

The President does not seem to realize or appreciate that his bragging can undermine relationships with our allies and with human intelligence sources.
Erick Erickson

Erickson wrote that people close to the president find him too insecure to take constructive criticism as anything other than a personal attack. So sources have gone to the media in the hopes that ?the intense blowback? may force Trump to recognize his errors.

And in this instance, where Trump?s careless boasting has put at risk both U.S. national security and an ally?s intelligence asset, there?s simply too much at stake not to speak out.

?I am told that what the President did is actually far worse than what is being reported,? Erickson said. ?The President does not seem to realize or appreciate that his bragging can undermine relationships with our allies and with human intelligence sources. He also does not seem to appreciate that his loose lips can get valuable assets in the field killed.? 

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Mistrust Plagues Both White House And Media, Poll Shows

Most Americans don?t trust the White House, according to a new HuffPost/YouGov poll. Most don?t trust the media, either.

Just 36 percent of Americans say they have a great deal or a fair amount of trust in President Donald Trump?s administration to present facts fully, accurately and fairly. The majority, 54 percent, have little or no trust in what the administration says.

survey in January taken just after Trump?s inauguration found less pronounced skepticism, with 43 percent trusting the administration while 48 percent said they had little or no trust in it.

The media, which Trump frequently berates, fares only marginally better. In the latest poll, 39 percent trust the media at least a fair amount, while 52 percent trust it not very much or not at all. In January, those numbers were 38 percent and 56 percent, respectively.

Just a tenth of the public has at least a fair amount of trust in both the White House and the media. A quarter trust the Trump administration but not the media, with 28 percent trusting the media but not the White House. Another 24 percent expresses confidence in neither.

Not surprisingly, attitudes toward Trump and the media track with preferences in November?s election. Among those who voted for Hillary Clinton, 77 percent have at least a fair amount of trust in the media, while among Trump voters that figure is 12 percent. Similarly, 79 percent of Trump voters ? but just 7 percent of Clinton voters ? have that much faith in the administration.

Overall, 10 percent of Americans say media coverage of Trump is too positive, 37 percent that it?s too negative, and 34 percent that it?s about right.

Nearly half ? 46 percent ? say they believe the media wants Trump to fail, with 26 percent saying the media is neutral and just 8 percent that the media wants him to succeed.

Most of those polled ? 57 percent ? say the media should be neutral, with 19 percent saying the media should be rooting for Trump, and 10 percent that the media should be working against him.

Use the widget below to further explore the results of the HuffPost/YouGov survey, using the menu at the top to select survey questions and the buttons at the bottom to filter the data by subgroups:

The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted May 11-12 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov?s opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.

HuffPost has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls.You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov?s nationally representative opinion polling. Data from all HuffPost/YouGov polls can be found here. More details on the polls? methodology are available here.

Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some, but not all, potential survey errors. YouGov?s reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample, rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.

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