Black History Month 2018 Closing Remarks

A biased message that ends the grits debate. *Smile*

Greetings, my readers. As you know, once again we are at the end of a particularly interesting Black History Month. It was wild, wasn’t it? This was a short, but powerful month. I’d like to recount some of my experiences. I spent much of this month event hopping, and my first stop was The Schomburg for their Conversations in Black Freedom Studies lecture series.

The next event that I attended was the 10th Anniversary of AfroPop celebration at Harlem Stage. It was here that I saw Fatal Assistance, a documentary about the disaster relief efforts in Haiti. Directed by Raoul Peck, this documentary shows how non-governmental aid often works at cross purposes, and not with the people of Haiti in an effective way. Many have wondered loudly where all of the money collected by the relief organizations went. Out of 6 billion dollars, the Haitian government received less than one percent of those monies. Despite alleged goodwill, neo-colonial relationships were maintained throughout this whole process. The Red Cross infamously received 1 billion dollars, but only built 6 houses. This film by Peck encouraged the viewer to ask hard questions about the international aid machine, and what he termed as the “military humanitarian business”. The documentary covers a two year period, from 2010 when the initial disaster happened, until 2012.

Next up, was not so much an event, but more so the discussion around it: Black Panther. There’s no way around it. The comments, discussions, events, all around this one film took up a lot of space, and led to some really interesting points being made. I gave my thoughts on the film in a review, and the conversation is still going on. There was an event at The Apollo around the film last night. This movie touches upon something, a moment of respite that we all needed. I’m glad that I was part of this moment.. and I am still #TeamKillmonger lol. In the comic book, he’s from Harlem, so I gotta rep.

I also had the chance to see Raoul Peck’s The Young Karl Marx. It was good as well. I am glad to see that directors who have a political consciousness are out here getting their projects seen. Raoul is 2 for 2 in my opinion. The people behind the camera are just as important as the ones in front of it.

Overall, this was an interesting Black History Month. I attended poetry readings, peeped two movies and a document, finished watching Altered Carbon, and set myself up quite nicely for March, April, and May. In case you didn’t know… that new book is on the way. Poetic Ruminations: Volume 2 from yours truly is dropping this Spring. There be more on that in a future post. Alright then, take care, and see y’all next blog post! Peace!


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