At Ripple Effect, we say a lot….and here is proof….
Over the last week, there have been hundreds of talks with scholars, students, comics, actors, and esteemed professionals analyzing this controversial and impactful video. Questions start with “What does the first gun shot mean?” “Why are they dancing with a fire in the background?” And “Why the White Horse?”
When I (Executive Director of Ripple Effect Artists/Lead Producer of Guarding The Bridge Off-Broadway) first viewed this, I had many visceral reactions. What I took away was that the entire video (with the exception of the final scene) was only African American people. What I saw constantly was their joy, their vibrancy, their singing and dancing and just how full of life/spirit they were only to be followed by a quick and thoughtless murder. And after all the oppression and violence, the narrator is just exhausted and needs a joint. And what does that lead to? More black men in prison while further feeding the white agenda of continuing slave labor. What this also caused me and millions more to do was consider how much we pay attention to media instead of what is needed. And these were just my interpretations.
So, does art make a difference? I think that point has been properly addressed. At Ripple Effect Artists (much like this video), we GO there. We go to the uncomfortable places with regards to the ongoing subversive racism that exists in this country. We show a man rolling “N” word off his tongue as though it is perfectly acceptable. We show the anger of an African American Female who has confronted outrageous oppression despite her multiple degrees and accolades. Why? Because it has people talk. Talk about what? Ways they can be aware and aid in society. What do we ask people to do? Take actions to further the responsibility we as white people need to take after centuries of assuming enough privilege to justify rape, violence, murder, and slavery.
Our next show is on June 19th–Juneteenth/Day of Emancipation. Cost is $18.65 (The year of Emancipation). See http://www.rippleeffectartists.com.
Thank you for reading.