Episode 017a Activism Through Art

Episode 017a Activism Through Art

Episode 017 Activism Through Art 

This was not my original blog that I was going to post, but as someone with a voice and a platform I want to speak on what's been going on in the last week. At the time of this recording the election news is less than 2 weeks old. 

For me I have been in a confusing maze of emotions. I feel like I am mourning a personal death. And maybe I am. Maybe it's the death of what I thought we were as a county. 

My ideas, hopes, and wishes for the country are no longer. I need to re-address my realistic expectations. 

America has shown me who they are and I need to live in that truth. No longer can I pretend that America isn't what we are...Divided. We are passionately divided. Half of the country on one side, and half of the country on the other. 

As it stands now, with the evidence that has been proven, we are in a time of high emotion, a time of turmoil, and a time of separateness. Acts of violence and hate have targeted groups that criminals deem less than. There is a lot of finger pointing and labeling going on and it's driving a massive wedge right down the center of our country. 

We as a country are loosing the possibility of seeing ourselves in everyone else. We hear: "You are this" "You are less" "You aren't worthy"

In yoga we say Namaste. I am sure you have heard it before. Namaste translated means that light in me sees the light in you. Meaning that there is a part of us within everyone. 

I am going to tell you right now that that concept has been really hard on me. I am still so angry and hurt that I don't quite know how to process Namaste.

Last week on Facebook Live I talked briefly about where I am emotionally after the election. Yes I am still angry. Yes I am still questioning. 

I am questioning where I fit in. I am questioning where I can feel safe. 

I am so angry that in 2016 I still have to figure these things out. My biggest question is what is it about humanity that wants to find separateness? Why do we as humans want to focus on the 1% that makes us different instead of the 99% that makes us all the same. Why haven't we evolved to that point and what can we as artists do to change that?

We as artists have a very important job. We are in the realm of possibilities to reflect, comment, and change the climate we are living in. 

I watched a clip of Nina Simone sharing what she thought out job as artists were. She says:

It’s our job as artists to reflect the time. It’s true of musicians, painters, singers, and dancers. At this crucial time in our lives when everything is so desperate, when everyday is a matter of survival I don’t think we can help but be evolved. We will shape and mold this country.
— Nina Simone

It was powerful clip to watch and it ignited another fire within me. 

How can we as creatives and artists mold this country? We are special because we aren't bound by rules. We are free to educate, imitate, provoke, anger, and question the very world we live in. 

We get to speak for the struggling and silenced communities. 

So while activism will look different for every artist. I do feel like it's our duty to take action in the way that ignites your soul, and excites you to the very core. 

Go beyond social media and get active. 

Write something, sing out, start a web series, volunteer, stand up and mold this country.

Here's what I want you to do. When you are ready make a public pledge about what you are doing to take action. 

The time has passed to hope everything will be ok. The time has passed to stay silent in your privilege (we all have it). They aren't staying silent so neither should we. Remember we are the badass makers and creatives out there. We didn't choose safety as a job, we take risks everyday. 

Don't let our country silence our artists we are powerful, we have the capacity to evoke change. 

Go out there and change lives. 

My continued pledge is:

  • Accept roles that build and broaden the perception of the black community. I am choosing to shine a bright light on all the diversity within the black community

  • When I get back from Germany, I am volunteering my services to domestic violence victims to heal and empower a silenced community

This is what I can do for now. 

What do you want to do? How do you want to mold our country? How can you activate change?

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