On Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Oscar Grant, and Black Men That I Love

“I can’t breathe!”

When the video of Eric Garner’s murder first surfaced I could not get through the video. I’ve seen the beginning parts a few more times, but I can’t seem to make it through his actual last moments. I heard the screams, I saw the multiple officers around him, and I saw his hands up in surrender. Anyone could see that he was struggling and the forced used on him was unnecessary. The news that Daniel Pantaleo would not be indicted broke my heart and the hearts of many people that understand the racial disparities in this country. While people were/are still settling from the lack of justice for Michael Brown, this verdict crept upon us. For me, it added another level of somberness and a bit of hopelessness. The value of Black men in this country is heartbreaking. Time and time again it shows that Black men are almost in their own subculture of humanity. The stories of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Oscar Grant hit so close to home because there are Black men in my life that I love. I have a father, step-father, brothers, cousins, uncles, and friends. As a Black woman, I may experience racism but most times, I don’t have to worry about police brutality. There have been a couple of times where I questioned a police officer and knew that their was little chance I would be physically handled. As a Black woman I am fully aware of this privilege.

“I don’t have a gun. Stop shooting!”

Continue reading “On Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Oscar Grant, and Black Men That I Love”

“Beyond the Lights” Made Me Miss Black Love Films

Last weekend I went to see “Beyond the Lights”, and I was surprisingly satisfied. Originally I wanted to see it because I support black films, and I loved GuGu Mbatha-Raw in Belle. Upon learning about how and why the film was made, I became more interested. “Beyond the Lights” displayed all the complexities of love while taking the audience on a journey through the lives of the main characters, Noni and Kaz. In addition to the interesting story, the soundtrack was amazing. My phone was dead (because I never have a charged phone), so I made my friend Shazam at least 5 songs throughout the movie. They  don’t make soundtracks like that anymore, and I was sold by the time the movie ended. When I got home I started to think about all the black love films I grew up watching and still love. Although I love all love stories (I’m a bit of a sap), I especially enjoy when I see characters that look like me fall in love. So, in no particular order, here is a list of my favorite black love films:

1. Love Jones

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2. Poetic Justice

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3. Disappearing Acts

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4. Two Can Play That Game

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