Fruitvale Station, Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin And The Value of Black Lives
Fruitvale Station is a fantastic movie.
Finally, a multi-faceted depiction of a Black male, revealing all the nooks and crannies of his personality; the love, anger, confusion, kindness.
Oscar Grant was the human being too many overlook when viewing Black males through the lens of white supremacy; those images promoted on a daily basis through television, print and music media.
Until authentic pictures like that painted by Ryan Coogler become part of our cultural mind set; until the cultural narrative includes depictions beyond the extremely drawn “thug” or “noble savage,” rescued from an innate predilection to base behavior through euro-centric intervention, Trayvon Martin tragedies will be repeated across this country along with tragedies such as the Sandy Hooks.
Adam Lanza and George Zimmerman were spawned by the same culture which purports that safety can be achieved by keeping those “others” under control; a pipedream not unlike the belief that one community can be maintained drug-free while another is drug-infested.
A paradigm which positions an individual’s worth on anything beyond his or her existence is bound to produce violent deaths followed up by empty expressions of platitudes and outrage. Only a conscious daily commitment to change will alter it.
Those who desire true human equality over a “better” position within a supremacist system’s hierarchy must recognize and do battle against the daily dose of media’s cultural kool aid. They must strap on their boots and create media with intent of developing a different flavor which includes all humans equally. Meaningful change will never occur without admission of a need for it as well as honest assessment of a belief system willing to eat its young in pursuit of power and the dollar bill.
After thousands of seasons under its thrall, this will be no easy task and, if you think it can be achieved without constant vigilance and self-examination; knock yourself out.
Until all human life is equally valued, all is endangered.