We live in a culture of VIOLENCE.. (visit any public school and see how youth treat each other.. learned behavior)
Physical violence is the lowest vibration and manifestation of a culture of violence.
Yet it begins with thoughts and beliefs that the only way to assert oneself in this life is to become some sort of bad ass bully.
Because the world is a tough place and people are just waiting to hurt you.
Therefore we vocally or energetically communicate to ourselves and others:
to Muscle through, get tuff, don’t ever let anyone see you struggle,
get them before they get you, don’t be a Punk,
Do them like they did you, Get even…etc.
And this is where the “advice” to ourselves and others tends to end.
Very little is said about the source of our anger.
How violence comes from FEAR and we are afraid due to false ideas of ourselves and our values, due to holding on to pain in our minds, in our physical and emotional bodies… holding on to being victimized and afraid to share, afraid to say that we hurt
acknowledge that we hurt others in our own moments of weakness when we abuse our power.
It’s un-American to apologize and reveal where we are human….
HURT PEOPLE, HURT PEOPLE…
And in our individualistic mind-frames we replay Hollywood images of lone gun revenge because
forgiveness doesn’t sell movies, or newspapers or get you popular vote.
Doing the right thing is seen as TO HARD and thankless…
Compassion isn’t adventurous enough.
Mental and emotional healthcare seems to only be viable if facilitated by pharmaceuticals and institutional profit.
We live in a culture of VIOLENCE and the senseless death can not end end until
we choose INDIVIDUALLY and collectively to bring our violence nature to the light an consciously choose a new way of being.
JUST A THOUGHT….
ERWIN E. A. THOMAS
AWO OBANIYI FAYEMI AWOYADE
CREATIVE INTELLIGENCE ARTS
"WATCH THIS NOW…. THEN WATCH IT AGAIN….because the "throne" is only a toy when the kingdom is owned by SPIRIT.
My concern with the Trayvon Martin murder is not that there will be no justice. That’s going to happen (we will not stop the full court press until it does. Even if justice is far too narrow in this land of industrial complex).
My concern is that to many who are witness to this tragedy only see it as an isolated incident or worse.. that there is a belief that this is a “black issue”.
Consider this: If I, as the feared subject (vs. object, the distinction is important) public enemy #1 move or respond in any direction that isn’t submissive or jovial; those who fear me suddenly get so busy (mentally, physically, or legislatively) “protecting themselves and their idea of “other” that i become a greater target. The national response to yet another life lost to the hands of profiling and ignorance is not a song and dance for attention. It is an assertive collective push for justice. RACISM IN AMERICA IS not an opportunity for me to gather my friends who identify as white and have a come to Jesus moment. Nor is it some figment of historically oppressed imagination. IT IS a constant plea from humanity to those who identify as white to ask themselves and each other what it was that lead them to adopt such a inhuman supremacist identity? What were the series of events? what unaddressed pains? what feeling of lack? Who benefited from this choice? Short term or generational? Once those questions are explored and answered, those who identify as white must work with each-other to heal themselves and dismantle the institutions that perpetuate the illness (this is not an easy task). I am sure that I’m far from the first person to write on this reality yet i will continue to write because justice doesn’t come from a court of law. I must be able to communicate to my two month old nephew as he grows in to his chosen time… that he is not to blame for the unaddressed pains of a entire group that identifies themselves as white and refuses unpack and take responsibility for rolls played in history. Who seem to view the lives of those whom they choose not to identify with as expendable. He will not grow up in fear, resentful or find it necessary to write a similar blog when he is in his 30’s . Only then will there be justice. Trayvon is my nephew, my son my brother, ME. We are in this together an everyone must do there own work.
-ERWIN E. A. THOMAS
Ozzie Jones was the first Director to hire me as a professional actor on the stage back in Philly in 1998 (I think) Even at that time I counted it a blessing to be part of this brother’s creative process a long with a grip to amazing Philly Artists. A true ARTIVIST (director, producer, MC, father, husband)
I continue to be inspired by the moves this brother makes. His work continues to address the issues that to often get overlooked or “talked at” instead of transformed and and addressed. In this film “My Block is Crazy" you hear youth from the city of Philadelphia speak for themselves about the issue of violence that affects them on a daily basis. Ozzie, in true ARTIVIST form did not hesitate to give candid answers to a few questions I posed to him about the film and the process. Check out his thoughts below. This film can be seen on Youtube so please pass it on your community especially the youth. I"m sure that I’m speaking to the choir here but… Every life lost to the environments that we as Adults create for our youth is a crime we must answer to. Yes, I know that the forces that battle against them are great but we have never had more tools than we do now to put up a FIGHT FOR what we want on the shoulders of our great ancestors. Create fearlessly so as to teach the youth that life is not to be feared.
Erwin E. A. Thomas / Creative Intelligence Arts
E: What did yo learn most from the process?
O:what i learned most was that you can not teach young people or anyone for that matter if you ignore or silence their voice in the conversation. in all the coverage of the “flash mobs” i noticed that no one had actually talked to the kids. impossible to know what is going on in anything if you do not listen to and hear the people most involved.
E: What’s the next step for the youth we see in the film?
O: the next step is I am pushing the concept of the film’s creation as a reality show or series where i repeat the process i engaged these kids in, in cities around the united states. work like this needs repetition. a real committment to working with and building with young people. cause when they are left alone they wil’ out. and no one film will help that. but a contiued process might. problem is we need money to keep it moving and niggas love to talk more than they love to spend money on building thier commuinity. harsh but true. thats why i am trying to turn it in a show. praying that maybe people will give a fuck about these kids if they think its a reality show with some ignorant drama in it. again. harsh but true.
E:What is the ideal function of the film… who do you want to see it most?
O: the ideal function of the film for me is to highlight the fact that the problems with these kids are OUR fault. adults! lying to them. abandonning them. verbally, sexually, physically, mentally, and spiritually abusing them. Us. politicians, parants, cops, drug dealers, store owners, teachers, neighborhoods, US. grown folks are making them crazy by not doing our bloody jobs in their lives and in turn it is making them crazy and they are lashing out. we can fix that broken relationship. and we must, before the shorty’ burn everything to the ground.
E: What are you reading these days?
O: I am reading the Bible, bunch of kids books, paul laurence dunbar collection, and alot of my own work trying to get it tight and right.
E: Did Grand Agent write any of the songs for the project specifically?
O: Yes and no about Grand Agent. alot of the songs he had written ahead of time. but he wrote them while he and i were talking all the time about the class and what i was learning working with the kids, so in that respect you could say hearing about them forced his pen to act. they did the same thing to me.
I might be late to the subject as TED talks seem to be where everyone who is thinking forward is looking. I especially appreciate this talk because it sounds like it could have been part of a living-room, or dinner table, or street corner after an in school or before stepping on stage anywhere on the globe. It’s only a matter of time my friends and enemies (just to be fair) the revolution has been here for some time now. I know because I’ve been having these conversations with the some of the finest minds for years. Rise with it or be left in reformation land. Attempting to solve the same challenges 20 years from now. The genius of the coming generations demand that we use as much effort to create new way as they will employ to get here. New Birth comes with its fair share or pains. LIGHT