I felt obligated to comment after reading the comment by [email protected] from London, UK.
www.ligali.org is the African British Equality Authority. A Pan African Human Rights Organisation that challenge the misrepresentation of African people and culture in the British media. Their remit is to actively campaign for cultural, economic, political and social justice on behalf of the African community.
I feel a need to put forward an alternative position as I feel that the Legali agenda has created a bias and I feel a need to represent those of us without a political agenda.
Dear Toyin, I really appreciated your comments on "Shoot The Messenger", I totally see where you are coming from but I felt compelled to offer my own 2 cents (or pence rather).
First of the film explored the British Caribbean experience which is vastly different from that of Africans. Correct me if I am wrong but none of the lead characters were African all of Caribbean heritage. Following the history of slavery, Caribbeans tend to carry more of the psychological wounds and perpetuate the ideology of the slave master to their own children.
A demonstration of this was the scene where the grandmother was hot combing her grand daughter's hair, commenting that her mother should have selected a light skinned partner to ensure the texture was silkier. Now in your experience you may find this an inaccurate representation of Black Britain but you must appreciate that just because you don't align yourself with this value system many blacks do. I have had the misfortune of hearing one too many black women make similar comments.
In reference to the forget about slavery comment, I don't believe that was intended to motivate us to forget about our rich heritage and assimilate to being Westerners but to move past slavery. Yes acknowledge how it has affected and hindered us but we have to move on and create a successful present and future for black people. Slavery has devastated black people across the globe but it seems we are still wallowing in the misery of slavery waiting to be rescued...by who I hasten to add.
You must appreciate that this film is satirical (very subtle yes) but satire none the less. The character was absolutely ridiculous and to use him as a motif for Black Britain is ludicrous. Instead he was a vehicle to raise issues that affect a significant number of Black Britons particularly of the Caribbean persuasion. I must reiterate you were probably offended because you couldn't identify with the issues raise or maybe you felt that film represented the minority as the majority.....but do we really know the percentages. I've lived in South London and there wasn't much that looked out of place.
I personally found the film shocking, shocking because they kept it real, too real. I felt like a *segment* of Black Britain was stripped naked for all to see. It put the issues facing many *out there* in the open and enabled us as a collective to examine why Black Britain is the way it is today. Granted we have many obstacles hindering our progress but to be honest, many black children don't have the support network available to succeed...parents!! I grew up on the same council estate that reared the group So Solid Crew, had it not been for my strong African parent (*singular*: absent Jamaican father) to instill the importance of education, I probably wouldn't be sitting here in the Corporate Finance Unit, undertaking my accountancy qualification which was all made possible by way of my UCL Bachelor of Science degree. I'm hardly a success story but I'm doing a lot better than my Caribbean counterparts who by now have two or three kids, living on a council estate, using their child benefit money to buy weed!! Again this isn't the story of every black woman in the UK but it is someone's story and the writer of Shoot The Messenger has the right to tell her story.
In summary it was thought provoking, entertaining, painfully honest And SHOCKING. The comment that we were more productive as slaves was POWERFUL. If your commentary was describing the atrocities that were Bullet Boy or Kidadulthood, I would have agreed with you 110% but this film was far more sophisticated. One man's journey that touched on a great deal of issues affecting millions across the globe. I believe the film will have a positive impact, creating a forum for discussion. Hopefully black people all over the country will be talking about *Shoot The Messenger* and recognise and stop perpetuating the ideology of the slave master which we have been carrying for hundreds of years and think more about what can be done to empower OURSELVES. Many black people have been living on auto-pilot. It's time to WAKE UP (School Daze Spike Lee)
Shoot the Messenger
Shoot the Messenger
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Shoot The Messenger follows one man's painful journey towards self-discovery. On the way he finds both his own attitudes and the expectations of his community challenged.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
April 15, 2022 at 08:25 PM