Sunday, July 10, 2016

American In the Nexus of Race and Guns Part 1

The first movie I ever saw by myself was In the Heat of the Night. I am sure that there was a Three Stooges short and a couple of Warner Brothers cartoons in front of it. Probably one of those that had Elmer tooting a gun.

I can't remember.
I do remember this movie.


I understood about cops harassing and detaining without warrant or reasonable cause other than the color of your skin.

I absorbed the audience reaction when Tibbs struck the rich man as doing something none of us could possibly do and live to tell about it.

I felt the fear about being chased by a mob of angry young white men that had no other sport. 

I was also chomping down a lot of butter popcorn and Mike and Ike's so I may have missed a few things.

What did I learn at 8 years of age
  • Have to be careful around white folks.
  • Have to be careful around white folks with guns and chains.
  • Sidney Poitier was Superman in a suit 
  • I'm going to do my best to stay out of the south.

Looking back, I think I absorbed was the understanding that guns and power could keep you safe but if you had some brains and something that other people wanted that might keep you alive too.

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