I recently read a review about the movie Race and some commentary. I was inspired to address the story of Jessie Owens and why race matters.
It's critically important to note that everyone's story of success, of tragedy, or triumph, or achievement is worth being told. The story of Jessie Owens was moved from just the traditional Black History Month posters and signs or even honorable mention in Black History Month programs to the big screen. . . but this isn't enough.
The play on words, "race", in the movie as well as the direct absence of guilt or shame on America's behalf of how the treat their own citizens but were critical of Hitler. The traditional white "Savior" to the oppressed is add to almost every film produced by white Directors that still imply the Master/Slave relationship. The movie puts in our face the reality of the critical role that race does play in our society. The story of Jessie Owens is deeper than what was given to us in the movie, but it was a great reflection of talented, gifted, strong Black male; who care of his family, his daughter, who came from a strong family. Those were pluses in the movie for me and realistic portraits of the strength and position that Black men play daily in America. Those images too often overlooked and overshadowed by the media's constant desire to seek stories that portray us as hoodlums, thugs and sexual predators.
The movie Race calls to the attention of America the reality of the fabric that threads this culture. Our culture's foundation includes the systematic racial discrimination and hatred that is still displayed by citizens of privilege in this country. The reality is that after President Obama was elected, the system's war on Black males worsened. It became right in our face. No matter how we dress it up, how we try to edit the authentic story of this country, the point will still stand that race does matter!
The way the guards were treating the Jews is parallel to what Jessie Owens was experiencing as a Black man in America from the police.In fact, it's what every Black male in America experiences today in 2016. It's systematically designed. Police brutality and racial profiling, prejudices and stereotypes all stem from racism. Time will continue to cause evolution which means that eventually, America will slowly change. We hope that it will change into what it has claimed to be but more so really desired to be. A true land of the free, a land of hope and land of the American dream, a dream that will be applicable to all it's citizen, regardless of their color, their zip code, their religion or who they chose to love. We will never get there, IF the hope of justice is overshadowed by an unjust system.