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Conscious Filmmaker, Activist for Women and Children

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Do Black Representations in Visual Culture effect the outcomes of justice?

I believe this question is hard for some Americans to answer. We know that race effects the justice for African Americans but we defend that it doesn't because we see a handful of African Americans that represent a small percentage that are successful. We tend to think because we have seen some positive images in visual cutlure as Nelson Mandela, Obama, Oprah, Kevin Garnet, Ozwald Boateng and others that race doesn't come into play. Then the case of Trayvon Martin is televised and we the visual representation flashed of negative images that in return effect the outcome of the justice not for Zimmerman but for teh vcitime Trayvon Martin. As a filmmaker it is my responsibility to create an image that will promote unity and not guide individuals of making unconscious decisions because of visual images of the past. That is what needs to be improved in the world.

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  • Dec 9 2013: From my perspective racism is when we consider people as belonging to a different group than the group we belong to. I personally differentiate for a variety of reasons and the more perception of threat a person is the more likely I will categorize them as belonging to a different group. For that reason I am comfortable with babies and the elderly. As a man I find other men usually more threatening than women. However if a man is friendly their differences are immediately erased and my mind begins focusing on our commonality.
    My suggestion for you is to cast people into your films without regard to race. Unless the film is specifically about race don't talk about race, if the viewer is watching your film I would suggest it would be preferable if they noticed only those characteristics that you want them to see.

    My hopeful message is that I have noticed that among the people that I know the younger they are the less they notice race. I think the racism in our justice system will be solved when the children born today are the judges and police.
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      Dec 9 2013: Thank you for your comment Vincent, I specialize in documentary so I don't cast on race. I actually seek a story that is underground and highlight that issue or cause. As a media professional I can't help notice that race is underlining issue. My purpose for posting was to get a different audience opinion than what I would if I went to a different community and popsed the se same question. I have posed this question in other platofrms and it is interesting the feedback and comments that have been conveyed. I definitely agree with you that the younger they are the less they notice race. Which shoudl be the norm anyways but as you and I are bth asware leave it media images and we tend to believe what we see...
      • Dec 10 2013: Nicholle:
        I took some time to read your web site. Among the many very good ideas you present I liked your pledge especially the last lines that state, “Know that I am blessed”. We are all blessed and we are all deserving – we are called to love the person standing next us even if they are threatening but we cannot love that person unless we first love ourselves.
        I appreciate what you do but if I could give one thought for you to consider it would be that “Love and Forgiveness are far more powerful than Justice”. I was struck by some of the news stories about Nelson Mandela today. The Love and Forgiveness he showed to his enemies was truly inspirational.

        I am personally against race but I am always reminded by other people that race exists. Not much of a fan of nationality either, I like to think of us all as people
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          Dec 12 2013: I respect your opinion but I see race everyday when officers are arresting innocent Black children at a bust stop on their way to a game. I see racism when I am pulled over because they a saw a black face in a nice car and have no reason for stopping me. I see race when I attended graduate school and folks wouldn't work with me on set because I was BLACK. I see race when innocent people of color are harrased, beat, and killed at the hands of our police or others. When an innocent individuals are sent to prison for over 25 years for a crime they didn't commit, I see race.
          I totally agree with you Mandela did forgive and show love. The issue that stands before us is when folks like myself who are liberal are repreatedly dehumanized because of the hue of our skin. I personally have friends of all colors because it is critical to understand as many cultures as you can. It doesn't erase I know that the media will continue to highlight race when presenting their stoires. I am not a racist but I am conscious that it does exist and it does effect the justice system. You can ask Trayvon Martin's parents, ask Stanely Wrice, Betty Tyson, Leonard Peltier and numerous others and I am sure they will agree.
      • Dec 13 2013: The injustice of life hits us all a little differently. I personally have been luckier than most but even I have been treated unfairly for many different reasons. I do not want to minimize the injustice that you or anyone else has been subjected to; my only hope is that the injustices don’t define you and that you can accept and be thankful for the circumstances of your life.

        The justice system is unfortunately filled with people and people have a nasty habit of treating other people badly. If the justice system were color blind I do not think there would be any less injustice. That being said I think it is important to continue to bring to the light of day the abuse of power that goes on in our Justice system and in our society as a whole.

        I will take what you have said and make a special effort to treat the young black men and women around me with kindness.

        Thanks for the conversation

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