If, for whatever reason, you don't like engaging with any forms of traditional OR social media... or you just, like, haven't talked to anybody in America, you may be unaware about the situation that is currently happening in Baltimore, Maryland surrounding the death of Freddie Gray.
Yet another unarmed black male was killed by those who are supposed to protect and serve the community. It is a troubling time, not just for black America but for America as a whole. There have been riots. But there have also been peaceful protests that have included people of all colors and ages. The beautiful people of Baltimore are strong and resilient. They are standing together.
The delicacy of the situation is certainly immeasurable, but I think that the anger that some Americans (and those who live outside of the country as well) have felt is difficult to ignore. In the case of Chad L. Coleman, the actor who played Cutty on The Wire and now deceased Tyreese on The Walking Dead, a very real and genuine rant that (admittedly and probably) could have been handled much better I think does the job of helping express how some of us feel.
Here it is below... it's a little troubling, and certain media outlets are going to try to spin it one way or another, but if you actually listen to what he's saying, it's all positive.
It's important to note that the reason for this outburst (which may get left out of a news report by some) is that a female passenger on the train asked her male friend where they may have known Coleman from... to which the man replied, "No, we don't know that n*****". This apparently was the point that wasn't caught on video that you see above.
You have to realize that for Coleman, this most recent murder (which is what it was) hits home for him in a way that very few of us can understand. He depicted the violent gang infested streets of Baltimore on The Wire, and along with numerous fellow cast members, was heavily involved with the real community as well.
He mentions that he was trying to tell stories that could enlighten those of us Americans who don't understand Baltimore (one of the most dangerous and drug infested cities in America) and cities like it... and their struggle. The show does a great job of showing the positive traits of citizens of Baltimore and police alike... and it doesn't shy away from the flaws and weaknesses either.
Coleman begs for humanitarianism from his fellow passengers on the train. And kind of how people don't want to talk about the situation in Baltimore and what has transpired across the country, a lot of people ignore him and are fearful of him foremost on the train. This is a famous Hollywood actor! With money... and perceived sophistication. It is clearly a ridiculous rant, but I think that's why he mentioned the shows he has been on.
He's not bragging or boasting about being on those shows. I think he's asking for respect and for help. And that's where I think this rant might hold some meaning and serve a potential purpose. It may have appeared that he was drunk or under some sort of influence, but I think the only influence was pain here.
He's clearly an intelligent man, but that doesn't mean that he doesn't have feelings. There seems to be this sort of threatening feeling people get from black men of all backgrounds that needs to be dealt with. If this random fear persists in our society, we're pretty much screwed. Why should the police be afraid for their lives around black men that need their protection?
And beyond just the police, some of these train riders act as living breathing proof that his outburst is "scary" above all else. I do have to give credit to the camera-man though, for at least hearing him out and being there for him with a few supportive comments. Of course, he later sold this footage to TMZ, so there's that. But I digress.
I think if we can rally as a nation like we have numerous times before, we'll be okay and we can attempt to heal these wounds. I just beg you not to look at this well-to-do and influential actor as another "thug" or criminal... that makes absolutely no sense! Even though his screams may scare you, these are screams for help... not to attempt to harm anybody.
I hope, as a country, we listen to these screams rather than dismiss them as another "angry" or "bizarre" rant, which I've been reading in headlines referring to it.
I hope you'll support Coleman the same way you supported his characters - Cutty and Tyreese. It's fun to watch black men entertain us and supply us with their talents from the safety of our homes... but the real black men need our support, too.
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