The FX Network’s critically acclaimed show Atlanta is a juggernaut of raw emotion.
Tuesday’s episode took on a pivotal message in reference to racial inequality in America today. The scene details the hypocrisy in valuing the sanctity of animals over human life.
When Darius, arguably the most riveting character in the series, appears halfway into the episode, he’s seen carrying around a poster encased in a cardboard tube. He arrives at a shooting range, casually unravels the poster, attaches it to the target post, and begins practice.
The camera pans to reveal a dog outline as the target instead of the default human image found at most shooting ranges. It’s also important to note he’s the only Black person at the shooting range.
This is what Darius does–he lives in this world, but on his own terms. Darius is free.
“What do you think you’re doing?” another man asks in a thick southern drawl, clearly outraged.
Darius responds that where he’s from, the dogs are “crazy.”
“You can’t shoot a dog!” the man laments.
But it’s Darius’ response that tore me to pieces: “Well, why would I shoot at a human target?”
Many compare Atlanta to Twin-Peaks, but it lives in its own lane–forcing us to laugh, definitely ponder, and sometimes well over with emotion at the sobering nuances of life for millions of young Black Americans.
For 30 minutes, the audience rides the wave of show-runner Donald Glover’s comedic wit. It’s amazing what the show accomplishes in a short period, capturing the doubts, fears, small victories, and defeats of life lived in a Black body.
On Wednesday, we woke up to another police shooting, claiming the life of another Black man named Alfred Olango. The story is convoluted with different eyewitness accounts, along with a separate narrative by the police. Was he unarmed? Was he compliant? There are reports that Olango was disabled and in distress at the time of the shooting.
What remains irreversible is that Olango is dead. Another family in grief, another community ravaged. And sadly, even after police release the footage, “justice” will be difficult to measure.
There’s a fictional scene in the movie Fruitvale Station detailing the last days of Oscar Grant. Grant’s character finds a stray dog gasping for breath after a hit and run accident. In the scene, Grant and the dog become one–both will later die on the pavement. Will anyone help? Does anyone care? The scene begs the question.
Today, an animal’s life is valued over human life. There’s fierce advocacy for animal equality, but silence when it comes to the countless police shootings involving Black men and women in this country. Shootings where there are bodies left sprawled out for examination and visual consumption–like a dead dog lying in the street.
VIDEO SOURCE: Twitter | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
49 Black Men And Boys Killed By Police
1. Jemel Roberson, 261 of 49
2. DeAndre Ballard, 232 of 49
3. Botham Shem Jean, 263 of 49
4. Antwon Rose Jr., 174 of 49
5. Robert Lawrence White, 415 of 49
6. Anthony Lamar Smith, 24Source:Getty 6 of 49
7. Ramarley Graham, 18Source:Getty 7 of 49
8. Manuel Loggins Jr., 31Source:Getty 8 of 49
9. Trayvon Martin, 17Source:Getty 9 of 49
10. Wendell Allen, 20Source:Getty 10 of 49
11. Kendrec McDade, 19Source:Getty 11 of 49
12. Larry Jackson Jr., 32Source:Getty 12 of 49
13. Jonathan Ferrell, 24Source:Getty 13 of 49
14. Jordan Baker, 26Source:Getty 14 of 49
15. Victor White lll, 22Source:Getty 15 of 49
16. Dontre Hamilton, 31Source:Getty 16 of 49
17. Eric Garner, 43Source:Getty 17 of 49
18. John Crawford lll, 22Source:Getty 18 of 49
19. Michael Brown, 18Source:Getty 19 of 49
20. Ezell Ford, 25Source:Getty 20 of 49
21. Dante Parker, 36Source:Getty 21 of 49
22. Kajieme Powell, 25Source:Getty 22 of 49
23. Laquan McDonald, 17Source:Getty 23 of 49
24. Akai Gurley, 28Source:Getty 24 of 49
25. Tamir Rice, 12Source:Getty 25 of 49
26. Rumain Brisbon, 34Source:Getty 26 of 49
27. Jerame Reid, 36Source:Getty 27 of 49
28. Charly Keunang, 43Source:Getty 28 of 49
29. Tony Robinson, 19Source:Getty 29 of 49
30. Walter Scott, 50Source:Getty 30 of 49
31. Freddie Gray, 25Source:Getty 31 of 49
32. Brendon Glenn, 29Source:Getty 32 of 49
33. Samuel DuBose, 43Source:Getty 33 of 49
34. Christian Taylor, 19Source:Getty 34 of 49
35. Jamar Clark, 24Source:Getty 35 of 49
36. Mario Woods, 26Source:Getty 36 of 49
37. Quintonio LeGrier, 19Source:Getty 37 of 49
38. Gregory Gunn, 58Source:Getty 38 of 49
39. Akiel Denkins, 24Source:Getty 39 of 49
40. Alton Sterling, 37Source:Getty 40 of 49
41. Philando Castile, 32Source:Getty 41 of 49
42. Terrence Sterling, 31Source:Getty 42 of 49
43. Terence Crutcher, 40Source:Getty 43 of 49
44. Keith Lamont Scott, 43Source:Getty 44 of 49
45. Alfred Olango, 38Source:Getty 45 of 49
46. Jordan Edwards, 15Source:Getty 46 of 49
47. Stephon Clark, 2247 of 49
48. Danny Ray Thomas, 3448 of 49
49. DeJuan Guillory, 2749 of 49
‘Atlanta’ Takes On The Value Of Human Life In Stirring Shooting Scene was originally published on newsone.com