“This, on a good day, is the intersection of my life, my work and social responsibility. During more challenging times...
it’s the place where they collide!”
Jeanette's Take on What's Next
MY THOUGHTS ABOUT WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN NEXT
While I have a true appreciation the many artists, theatres, organizations and groups who have posted their commitment to fight Anti-Racism and to support the Black Lives Matter movement, I have to admit that I have a concern. It is hard to ignore things that are unrelentingly placed in your face/ears/minds nonstop. It isn’t as difficult to come on board and protest when the fervor of injustice is on the front of every newspaper, in the view of camera lens, and the range of recording equipment, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook posts. The high and constant outrage about the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and as the list continues to grow and as a result fuels the flames of injustice. And it will hopefully, cause all Americans to watch closely the people, procedures and process of those who are assigned to protect all of us; whether they wear a uniform, carry a gun, sit behind a desk, on a bench or hold any type of office sworn to uphold the safety of citizen.
Then there countless Black Americans who are routinely stopped, harassed and disrespected because of the Beckys and Karens of the country who know the not-so-secret code phrase ‘Black man!’ The reprogramming of our children’s minds so that they understand the rules that apply to mainstream society do not apply to people who look like us. Make them understand that they may have to endure the disrespect and insults that will come their way in the course of something as simple as going to the store, getting gas, and walking through a park is the cost of living while Black. Explain to them that we need them to do that because we need them to get home so we can figure out how to fight another day.
So my concern is what is your stance when the it’s not front page news or the lead story or when we return to work and gather in the break room?
What is the game plan once the cameras stop and the reporters go home?
What are the companies going to do with their restrictive hiring process?
Will there be a change in the internal promotion and training programs of businesses?
What will the Boardrooms look like? Will they trade old guard policies for equity and equality?
When the theatres reopen, what will the Broadway season look like?
Should the pool of Black actors, directors, and technicians put their hopes on this new era of awareness and support? Support for those of us who self-produce our work by desire but often out of necessity.
I am interested to see how it will all work out…I’m watching!
Music and My Writing
MUSIC…It Can Make a Difference!
Now, anybody that really knows me knows that I do love my music! I love all types of music…okay, I struggle some with Rap but that’s only because, I don’t understand most of the lyrics. And honestly, some of the lyrics that I do understand, I don’t always like. Not saying it is all bad; it’s not.
I am at an age now where music and the memories that come with it hold a special place in my heart. Call it the makings of me-who I am today. For me, there is nothing like music. It can make me laugh, cry, smile…feel good all over as Stephanie Mills used to sing. Sometimes when I am writing a new story or can’t envision a clear path to the end of the story. Playing music can jolt me, ease me, inspire me, or even encourage me. Honey, just the right song played at just the right time can change my thoughts and my mood. I mean it can take me from sad to happy, from worried to peaceful. Take me from a lazy day on the sofa to dancing around the house. Does it do that to you?
Music influenced me when writing ‘Don’t Call Me Brother!’. It’s a story about two brothers, Andrew, an assistant police chief and Hasan, a marching, sign carrying, freedom chanting activist, who are at odds about the police killing of another unarmed Black teen. The senseless deaths of Tamir Rice, Eric Garner, Michael Brown and others left my heart and the hearts of many others in pieces. That play was my effort to support the Black Lives Matter movement. The song that kept playing in my head was The O’Jays (my favorite group!!) song by the same name. My hope was that we, as a people, would come together.
When I was writing ‘Bruised But Not Broken’, a new take on the Prodigal Son, a friend shared that she was going through an especially hard time dealing with both her family and her church. Who hasn’t been there at one time or another? Yolanda Adams’ In the Midst of It All, gave her faith to know she was going to make it through!
I bet if you took a little time that you’d remember a few songs that helped you make it through some of life’s challenges. Let us know what songs gave you that push to keep going!!
In the meantime, spend some time reading this article from the Sisters from AARP about ways to get through some of those times including links to a great playlist!
Jeanette's Take #003
This is a sample blog.