Back in 2014
It started with a question
2014 Summer "I'm sure you can name 5 superheroes but can you name 5 black superheroes - without the internet...". I asked this question to a social media forum. The end results proved that very few people could name a superhero of color and sadly neither could I. A few weeks later I posted the question again and nothing. And so, I began looking at a connection between media rhetoric, storytelling, perception, heroism and how those elements may impact us socially. This was after Trayvon and before Baltimore.
2015 January I'm at work, at a 9-1-1 dispatch center, thinking about how to improve our community. Searching the web and reading material on a very old "social" group, The Klan, I wanted to know where some of the negative rhetoric began and if it even started with them. A few months later a colleague introduced me to google archive papers online. Within the periodicals of history, I found that it is a community's social norm, - it wasn't the police it was the public. Public perception and public policy created the environment of generational discrimination.
2016 February I wore the t-shirt (shown on the left) to work and immediately someone asked to explain and why "white" heroes don't matter. I had to defend the thesis in the middle of a call center without the luxury of being around like-minded supporters. There was a dismissiveness to why it mattered as a continued to explain. If you want to give someone hope and make attempts to build then one must be willing to have this dialog. Building a community is more than commerce and fortification, there's artistry, story, policy, sciences and so on.