The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air 2x09 - “Cased Up” (November 11, 1991)
Ahead of their own time
It kinda hurts to see comments like this sometimes. Not because of the individual, but just because of the fact that the shootings of minority youths, especially African Americans, seems like a new thing to people. It’s what makes this moment from Fresh Prince seem “ahead of its time.” The thing is, it isn’t. It’s not like prejudices just took a break post 1964 and the enactment of the civil rights act. The only reason we’re now hearing about these shootings isn’t because they just started happening with more frequency recently, it’s that they’re now being much more widely publicised. Since Trayvon Martin, publicity surrounding these crimes have sky rocketed as have the number of people willing to speak out against it, and thus they seem to be happening more right now and in the past few years. But that’s not the case, numerous studies have documented the amount of African Americans who have been gunned down in police shootings. From 2000-2010, 20 people were shot and killed in New York alone. In California, from 2004-2008, it was documented that 47 individuals were shot in police altercations, none of which were Caucasian. African Americans have been “disproportionately represented among those targeted” for quite some time now, this is not new. That being said, the reason we are so aware of it now is because of people who care enough to reblog things like this (and by that I mean on a grander scale that goes beyond tumblr, but is just as important). People are now actually choosing to band together and take a stand. There is no race or gender division in those who are choosing to get the word out, but it’s people, everyday people who are seeing these injustices and finally standing up against them together to say that this has to stop. Which is so impressive to me because it means that people as a whole are actually starting to listen to what this moment in the Fresh Prince was trying to illustrate which should be commended. Criminal acts like these have gone silent for too long to the point where people think that they just haven’t been happening until now, but we’re finally fighting that silence and I am so grateful for each and every person doing this. We will not put our hands down, we will raise them high above our heads and remind the world that each and every life matters because they are human lives.