Friday, October 8, 2010

Police Brutality

Just watched a video about alleged police brutality in West Philly. I'm sick of people who aggravate situations with police and say "oh look what they did to me". Don't provoke them. Get a lawyer and work the courts. Prove them wrong the right way. Don't be a friggin hero. I'm sorry, I have no sympathy for this guy.

There is such thing as an unprovoked attack by police. I wouldn't dare say that police brutality doesn't exit but we as everyday citizens have got to stop crying wolf. We have got start thinking critically about our actions. We have got to say what part did I play in all of this. These organizations that claim to be for civil rights and justice must rethink their approach to defending the rights of criminals. If a law abiding citizen is going about his or her own business and is harassed or abused by police, we must hold them accountable. But we lose credibility when provoke violent responses from them.

I refuse to take any sides in this argument. I see this as an issue of credibility. As everyday citizens we must hold ourselves accountable for our own actions. We shouldn't give the police leverage or justification to brutalize us. If and when we are faced with a case of police brutality, it should be made plainly obvious to any jury or judge who is the real offender.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Implications of "Precious"

I don't think it is a coincidence that African-American actors are being given awards for portraying stereotypical images (immoral, oversexed, uneducated). But when they pick up that script and decide to accept the role, they assume culpability as well. Angela Bassett turned down the role in monsters ball for obvious reasons. Monique, may or may not have understood the implications when she decided to play in that poverty porno film called "Precious".

On one hand she could have interpreted it as most uninformed misguided consumers did as "telling an untold story". You know, the same excuse rappers use to justify most of the filth they represent. On the other hand she might not have seen anything wrong with it just as the other stereotypical characters in early american films such as Mammy played by Hattie Mcdaniel in Gone with the Wind or Mantan Moreland of the 30s and 40s. So that leaves us with the fundamental question did they know any better?

This isn't anymore about movie executives out to perpetuate negative stereotypes about black people, any more than it is about an american appetite for sickness and how we'll sell our souls and the dignity of our people for 15 minutes of fame. Yeah, the american public might get a kick out of the 2009 sequel to the "Color Purple" but it's because in this society there will always be a demand for ignorance.