Spike Lee Shows Eric Garner Murder is Similar to Radio Raheem’s

Image Courtesy: Spike Lee Instagram

Image Courtesy: Spike Lee Instagram

I always say real life is stranger than fiction, but when certain scenarios are replicated it’s eerily emblematic of our society. And we’ve seen the police brutality theme–shoot, punch, strangle first and ask questions later–play out more through the smartphone lens than a movie camera.

This time Spike Lee captured how the two worlds collided. The famed filmmaker compared Radio Raheem, a gentle giant character murdered by police in his critically acclaimed “Do the Right Thing” film, to Eric Garner.

Eric Garner is on the minds and lips of many New Yorkers as the latest victim of police brutality. Not only for the cops overly excessive kneejerk reaction to selling loosies (illegal cigs) but their inability to get the asthmatic father and grandfather help when he needed it most.

This is where it gets fuzzy for me. Now that they got this man on the ground, now that he’s silent and stiff, wouldn’t you check his pulse? Not pick his pockets. If you’re wearing a badge that reads “protect and serve,” wouldn’t you utilize that training and perform CPR? Instead of slapping his non-responsive shoulder you CAN wave over the paramedics to revive him.

Or better yet listen when he says he can’t breathe.

I was hesitant to watch the disturbing video for obvious reasons, but when I finally got up the courage to view it. I instantly thought of my father. How he would break up fights between kids (something Eric was reportedly doing before the police approached him) from me and my sister’s school and talk some sense into them. How he’s a staple to the neighborhood like Eric was to his. And despite that he was still murdered right in front of the community’s eyes. No one helped.

Everyone watched him go silent. Now we have to be his voice.

 

Comedian Mike Epps Honored for Anti-Bully Campaign in New York

Mike Epps with Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster handing over the key to the city and a Proclamation. Image Credit: Mike Epps Twitter Page

Mike Epps with Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster handing over the key to the city and a Proclamation.
Image Credit: Mike Epps Twitter Page

So, who knew funnyman Epps had a serious side? Like most of you, whenever I look at him I can’t help but drudge up this memory…and it still brings tears to my eyes. Hehehehe.

Hope that was a nice walk down memory lane,┬ábut this time the actor/comedian is tapping into his serious side by talking to kids about his anti-bullying campaign. He visited Niagara Falls, New York last week to not only collect some accolades–he received the key to Cataract City, but also share his experiences being bullied as a child.

Mike Epps spoke to kids at the Niagara Falls Housing Authority about how to cope with a bully. One method he suggested was complimenting them (not what would be on most people’s lists, but, okay) because they are usually “insecure and scared themselves.”

And if that doesn’t work?

Welp, he doesn’t instruct putting hands on others, but does share that salt can be a good defense mechanism.

Epps honesty had an impact on the crowd considering the feedback he received on Twitter: