Daymaker - a person who performs acts of kindness with the intention of making the world a better place.
~ David Wagner
, author of Life as a Daymaker; how to change the world by making someone's day ~

DayMaker - any thought, word, or deed that spreads happiness, compassion, or fruitful ideas.
~ Annis Cassells ~

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Seeing "Detroit" the Movie

I debated on whether to go see the movie “Detroit." Did I want to have that harsh reality from 1967 in my face on the big screen – in living color?

I’d lived through those times.  But I was forty miles away, in campus housing in Ypsilanti at Eastern Michigan University with my husband and six-months-old daughter. I had relatives in Detroit, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, and my parents and sister. My brother was in Viet Nam. 

My fear and concern were huge, but I’m sure it was muted in comparison to the folks who survived what is now known as the riot, rebellion, or uprising, depending on who’s describing it.

Yes, I would go see the movie, wanted to see the movie. So I could discuss it and write about it. And we did, Judy and I. In Coos Bay, Oregon, at noon on a Wednesday. One other couple ventured into the theater to watch. The four of us had the place to ourselves.

The movie’s portrayal of events in Detroit and in the Algiers Motel was harsh, rattling any sense of security and confidence in justice. As I observed innocent people humiliated, dehumanized, threatened, and beaten, their dreams and lives shattered, anger and sadness re-ignited in my heart and gut. 

But, I realized “Detroit” is a film that should not be avoided. This is a work of art that reflects our history as a nation and our on-going struggle with race and policing. It’s a film that shows us, fifty years later, things aren’t much changed. It’s a film that should open thoughtful dialogue.

And then came Charlottesville.

We need to talk. I’m open for discussion, thoughts, questions.  None of us has all the answers. But let’s do whatever it takes to facilitate understanding and the advancement of equality, kindness, and peace. A conversation is a beginning.

~ xoA ~


  1. OK, you've convinced me to see it. Other reviews of the movie were not good, so I was "on the fence."Looking forward to these conversations with you, my friend.

    1. I sat with fists and guts clenched. It wasn't easy, but I'm glad I went. As always, I look forward to all conversations with you. Thanks so much. xoA

  2. I love your willingness to take on the tough subjects, to open the discussion. Someone I once knew believed the Holocaust didn't happen, couldn't happen. That the world wouldn't allow it to happen. So this person refused to believe in happened. And I think that's exactly how it happened.

    1. Sure. It was out of the realm of most people's thinking. But now we know the unthinkable, the unbelievable can and does happen. Thanks so much for participating, Molly Jo. xoA

  3. I, too, hesitate to go pay to see movies such as "Detroit". Will probably wait until it is on demand on FIOS. Still have not ventured to select "7 Years A Slave" because I'm tired of such movies.

    Just watched the "Making of..." preview of Ken Burns' "Vietnam War" series. Having lived through that period of our history I somehow do not have qualms about watching the series. Perhaps because he so effectively covers many sides & perspectives.

    I digress. And then comes Charlottesville! I've had to re-visit my level of contribution to society's consciousness about - gee - being Black, female, AND lgbt-identified. And I'm still comfortable with being less a "flag-waver" (out in front & in groups) and more a "1 person @ a time" consciousness-raiser. I believe I've enabled more people who think and/or live differently from me to re-examine their own beliefs and accept that they got to know "at least one" person who defies their stereotypes. Considering all the people I've met & connected with in my 60+ years, hopefully I've made quite a societal contribution.

    That is not ego speaking. It's simply sharing how I choose to engage and (hopefully) create change in this world over my lifetime.

    Then there are the continuing experiences of dismounting from my motorcycle and ambling into biker bars... Perhaps the rest of the world needs to experience 2-wheeled transportation and camraderie to know that, other than the 1%, all we need is a helmet in hand to level-set and place each other on the same plane, if just for a little while.

    1. Sylvia, it's great to see your take on this. The ways you choose to make your contribution to society and a difference in the world have a mighty impact. Thank you for participating in the discussion. Amble on, my friend. xoA

  4. While the past has much to teach us, remembering it, can be as painful as living it. Well done. I admire your courage. I wish we could all see each other as simply human and deserving of love, kindness, respect, opportunity, friendship, support, understanding... and having something to offer this world.
    Sue Speake

    1. Wouldn't that be wonderful if we could all see each other as each other, rather than "other." Thanks, Sue, for your kind words and taking the time to read and respond. xoA