Newswire: Coco Gauff, 19, makes history: youngest U.S. Open Champion since Serena Williams in 1999

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire

Coco Gauff has etched her name in tennis history as she clinched the U.S. Open singles title, becoming the youngest player, at 19, since Serena Williams’ historic victory in 1999 when she was just 17 years old. Gauff’s remarkable triumph came after an intense three-set battle against Aryna Sabalenka, with a final score of 2-6, 6-3, 6-2.
Amidst the crowd’s roar and the flashbulbs of countless cameras, Gauff stood on the iconic Arthur Ashe Stadium, her trophy shining brightly, and her victory speech filled with a sense of readiness for the fame that will undoubtedly come her way. “I’m ready,” Gauff proclaimed, her youthful confidence evident. “I embrace it. I know how to keep my peace but also embrace all of this around me.”
As Gauff accepted her winner’s check of $3 million, she took a moment to graciously thank tennis legend Billie Jean King, who stood alongside her on the stage. King is a long time advocate for equal treatment and payment of female athletes in all sports. The gesture highlighted Gauff’s perspective, humor, and charm that has set the stage for American sports’ next global superstar.
“She is so humble,” said Pere Riba, Gauff’s coach, in the post-match interview. “Her work ethic is so strong, so professional, and she has very good manners. Put all of that together, and she will only get better. She can handle it all.”
Gauff has long been earmarked as one of tennis’ next superstars. Her maturity on and off the court, intelligence, and ability to articulate herself have endeared her to the American public and the global tennis community.
Even prominent figures in the political arena couldn’t contain their excitement. President Joe Biden took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to congratulate the young champion. “Congrats to U.S. Open Champion Coco Gauff,” he tweeted. “You electrified Arthur Ashe stadium and the entire nation – the first of more to come and proof that anything is possible if you never give up and always believe. You’ve made America so proud.”
Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama, who cheered Gauff during her first-round match against Laura Siegmund, also extended congratulations. “We couldn’t be prouder of you on and off the court – and we know the best is yet to come,” Barack Obama wrote. The former First Lady paid tribute to Gauff’s “hard work and grit” and shared a cherished photo of their meeting after that memorable first-round match.

Former President Bill Clinton joined the chorus of praise, describing Gauff’s victory as “incredible” and expressing optimism for the future of American tennis. Serena Williams, whom Gauff credits for inspiring her dreams, shared her excitement on Instagram, writing, “Ahhhhh!!!! Amazing!!!!”
Gauff reflected proudly on her victory. “My dad took me to this tournament, sitting right there, watching Venus and Serena compete, so it’s really incredible to be here on this stage,” she stated.

Newswire : Racist sentenced to Life in Prison for Buffalo mass killing of African Americans

TOPS supermarket in Buffalo, NY

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent

A white man who traveled to a Buffalo grocery store in May and killed 10 African Americans, including Black Press writer Katherine Massey, pled guilty to 25 criminal counts on Monday and will spend the rest of his life in prison.

A grand jury previously indicted Payton Gendron, 19, on domestic terrorism, first-degree murder, attempted murder, hate crimes, and weapons possession. A single domestic terrorism motivated by hate charge carries an automatic life sentence upon conviction.

Prosecutors said Gendron acknowledged that he committed the heinous crimes “for the future of the white race.”

A lawyer for the victims indicated relief that the state’s case didn’t go to trial.
“It avoids a lengthy trial that they believe would be very difficult for the families,” said Terrence Connors, an attorney representing the victims’ families.“I think it was pretty clear they had no real defense.”

The self-described white supremacist, Gendron, previously pled not guilty to federal hate crime charges. Federal law allows for the death penalty in those cases.

He still faces 27 federal counts, including ten counts of hate crimes resulting in deaths, three counts of hate crimes involving an attempt to kill, and 13 counts of using, carrying, or discharging a firearm related to a hate crime.

Prosecutors said Gendron possessed a 180-page manifesto that revealed troubling perceptions the self-avowed white supremacist had. He complained of the dwindling size of the white population and included his fears of ethnic and cultural replacement of white people.

Gendron described himself as a fascist, a white supremacist, and an anti-Semite.
His live-streamed shooting spree has left at least ten dead and several more wounded.

Unlike the many unarmed Black people killed during encounters with law enforcement, the white racist is alive to plead not guilty in court.

“While past violent white supremacist attacks seem to have factored into this heinous act, we must acknowledge that extremist rhetoric espoused by some media and political leaders on the right promoting theories that vilify or dehumanize segments of our society like ‘the great replacement theory’ is a factor too,” wrote U.S. House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie Thompson in an earlier statement.

Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell added that the organization condemns the white supremacist terrorist attack targeting Black men and women in Buffalo and the racist rhetoric that has sparked such violence.

“The constant repetition of white supremacist conspiracy theories on social media and even mainstream media outlets has led to horrific violence in places as distant as Christchurch, El Paso, Oslo, and Charleston,” Mitchell asserted earlier.

“Those who promote racism, white supremacy, antisemitism, Islamophobia, and other forms of bigotry must be held accountable for the violence they inspire.”
Mitchell added that CAIR has often spoken against those who promote the “great replacement” and other racist conspiracy theories.

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown told National Newspaper Publishers Association’s live daily morning show, Let It Be Known, that Gendron surveilled both the community and the grocery store as part of the attack’s planning.

Brown said the teen surveilled the area for several days and targeted a busy place in an area predominantly populated by Black people. Gendron’s manifesto noted, “Zip code 14208 in Buffalo has the highest Black percentage that is close enough to where I live.”
According to the U.S. Census, the zip code is 78 percent Black and among the top 2 percent of zip codes nationwide with the highest percentage of the Black population. In addition, it has the highest rate of the Black population of any zip code in upstate New York.

“Well, this manifesto tells everything to us. And that is what’s so bone-chilling about
it is that there is the ability for people to write and subscribe to such philosophies filled with hate,” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said after the shootings.

“The white supremacist acts of terrorism that are being fermented on social media and to know that what this one individual did has been shared with the rest of the world as well as the live-streaming of this military-style execution that occurred in the streets of my hometown.”

Massey, one of Gendron’s victims, spent her life trying to clean up and help her community. While she retired from Blue Cross Blue Shield, Massey, 72, remained active in her community as the Cherry Street block club president and as a columnist for the Buffalo Challenger, an NNPA member newspaper.
“She was the greatest person you will ever meet in your life,” her nephew, Demetrius Massey, told reporters.