Updated: Apr 23, 2021
Lately, I have been exhausted trying to get my interview with my subject, Joe Prude for the film. If it wasn't his schedule it was mine, if it wasn't that, it was the weather. Finally this week I was able to speak with him and reshoot his interview outside. It was such a beautiful day that folks were taking full advantage of the sun being out. That being said, dirt bikes were zooming down Child Street like it was the Daytona 500. I haven't reviewed my footage so I'm hoping my lavalier microphone did it's job.
I had a great week all week with my interviews and learned a lot from people I encountered with along the way. One interview really brought joy to my heart was Emma, she was a petite white college student who attended the University of Rochester. She was honest with her answers and if she wasn't sure how to answer it she said it freely instead of making something up on the fly. I hope I captured her spirit of love because she presented me with love for humanity. She recognized the racism and her heart was breathing justice she was the epitome of change I want to see in White America. I understand the frustration of my Brown Bruthas and Sistahs with White government and laws I agree they must be changed. We also need allies like Harriet Tubman had when traveling and assisted the slaves with Freedom passing by Rochester. Harriet had White allies who hid the slaves in their homes risking not only their lives but the families as well. They knew the risk but they knew the slaves were people as well. The Quakers from history helped many slaves passing to go Canada so that being said we have to have White allies if we are going to have some change. Let me be clear, I think that as a collective we all should work together for the better good. I also think as a person of color I cant afford to be naive in thinking that the laws are fair when it comes to people who look like me. At the end of the day we live in a Black and White society that favors White and as Brown people we have to find an alternative way to beat the current justice system if we are going to survive and thrive. I also enjoyed a phenomenal interview with Rosalind Walker who was with "Enough is Enough" she explained in detail the situation with the ElBey family. The FOIL request she filed and was sent to another site making it difficult for the public to retrieve evidence that the public is entitled to. These tactics are which discourage folks from finding out the facts until they are ready. I found the same scenario with the Joe Prude he mentioned that he requested the camera footage from the officers and it took them six months to release it, that is bullshyt. Rochester Police Department is crooked and not for the community whatsover it's a Slave Watch Organization. The whole police system is a fraud we see that all over the country. The George Floyd case is disgusting like there wasn't a knee on the George Floyds neck for over eight minutes. Ex-morticians are stating that it was because of his heart rate accelerated by the drugs that killed George Floyd. Like the world didn't witness an execution of Black man demasculinized in front of the world with a knee on his neck. The pure audacity of the legal system is appalling just like the murder of Daunte Wright, loosing his life because the cop mistook her gun for a tazer. How does a 25 year police veteran forget which one is the gun? If you can't distinguish between a gun and a tazer you shouldn't work for the police department. If you're scared of a person because of the hue of their skin you shouldn't work for the police department. What gets me is that she was training other officers much like Derek Chauvin who was also training officers. The justice system needs to be rewritten with Black, Brown, Yellow and Red people included in the constitution. As I listen to the stories of injustice I am numb to the other side I guess it's because at the end of the day they had a choice and they choose the cowards way instead of humanity. I think what they are teaching in universities and police academies across the country should be thrown in the garbage and bring folks to the table from all walks of life and make a constitution that includes all people. I am not sure when this will take place but it is something that is long overdo. History keeps repeating itself and it's awful how Black lives are being executed. I am disgusted with the news and all I want is to get my boat, so I can sail away from this hot mess. As I interview kids and adults about the situation between cops and community there is a fear and unsettling thought it will never be over.
One thing I can say happened positive in my lifetime is that marijuana was legalized! Yahoo! Praise the Lord! New York State finally woke up and has smoked! My arthritis is sure thankful for Cuomo coming to that decision. I haven't got my Covid shot I was scheduled for May by someone who didn't know what the hell they were doing. The guy was a complete moron he kept pushing my Covid shot out and I allowed it because I really ain't to keen about getting some virus shot up inside of me. I will eventually get it because I love to travel and I can't afford to get sick it costs too much. Ok back at the ranch...
I have been exercising regularly since I went horseback riding last Sunday. Aqueelah, myself and our daughters went horseback riding out at Matt's ranch "A Horses Friend". Erin was little upset because Matt gave her some old ass pony that wasn't visually attractive. I had to tell him when we were leaving don't put my daughter on that horse ever again. She wanted to ride Nikko but I was on Nikko and Matt was riding the horse I liked. Ehh it was raining but we had a good ride and it was therapeutic.
Na'ilah really enjoyed riding and I would like to take them back again, if I can get another donation that will cover the expenses. I was extremely grateful because Justin Morris, from ARC non-profit sponsored our ride. I haven't interviewed him yet and we both agree we have to get this interview out of the way. I just saw that he has a baby on the way so I am sure he has things to plan for before his princess arrives.
I can finally edit my trailer this weekend now that I have the Joe Prude interview. I have been reaching out to two agencies the Free the People Rochester campaign and Police Accountability Board and neither have seemed to be on board to want to interview. I am starting to think they may have something to hide or they are just unorganized. One of the two must exist in this scenario because I have reached out to quite a few people and the folks serious about change agreed to an interview. I tend to notice in shooting documentaries some folks will lead you on, and some folks will make the time to speak the truth. Folks who run from speaking the truth are fake and usually time exposes their agenda which usually happens publicly. I am not sure what the agenda for both of the groups but I do know when I have been avoided. I am sure the truth will come out eventually if they are both worth my time for an interview.
I stopped by the Sankofa healing center on Portland and spoke to a mental health therapist. I haven't spoke to her in a minute. I expressed to her I would like to interview her for the film and she agreed. I believe she knows first hand the trauma that is effecting our community and I want her to speak that truth. I know with all this trauma that the families have gone through she may be a blessing to give them her card. I know Joe said he wasn't sleeping well since they murdered his brother. How can he sleep after think ing you are calling the police to protect his brother because he was afraid he was going to hurt himself. Instead they kill him he spoke about the bag being out over his brothers head and how it reminded him of slave images to see that image over and over again. I can't possibly understand what this man is going through to loose his brother who talked about so lovingly when he speaks about Daniel. There is a definite hurt that you feel when you speak to Joe, you can't help to feel his pain. I am going to share my information with them because I see both families as hurt and torn up from injustice in our country.
I hope to continue blessing these folks I have met through the film and pray that my film really evokes change not just in peoples minds but in their heart so they will be enlightened to act on their feelings.
Live your best life and remember step by step you can accomplish your goals. Write your goals down and them make them happen...Blessingz