Black lives Matter. Some people may want to say All Lives Matter, but as it is incredibly clear that all lives are not treated equally or matter to everyone the same, then we must stand up for those who are disproportionately harmed by society, police and politics. The way the police harm and kill unarmed black people is atrocious and criminal (even though they very rarely face criminal charges) and the way the police are so violent towards peaceful protests is terrible and it has to stop.
I had wondered about saying anything about the events that have happened this past week, and the racism that’s been prevalent around the world forever, on my blog as it’s really somewhere just for me to post film and book reviews. When I comment on real life events, that’s generally on my Twitter or Instagram. But then I realised that saying nothing when I have a platform that can reach hundreds of people is not good enough. I might say the wrong thing, and if I do I encourage people to reach out and tell me so I can learn and do better, but it’s better to try than to do nothing.
Especially as the media I consume is political. The books and films I read and watch and review, they all have some sort of bias or politics in them whether it unconsciously comes from the author or filmmaker or it’s the subject matter the books or films are about. Marines from My Name Is Marines on BookTube recently posted a video that I thought was very clear and articulated a lot of things I wanted to say or hadn’t even thought about a lot in regards to using your voice if you have a platform and the media which we consume. I encourage you to watch it.
While I would never say or do anything racist, as a white person I cannot escape the fact that I benefit from white supremacy, whether I mean to or not. I don’t have to consider how I interact with the police, I don’t have to overthink my interactions with certain people, I get to just be me without considering the colour of my skin and so many people don’t have that luxury.
I need to do better. I need to educate myself more and actually think about what I can do to make this world a better and more equal place and then do something. I do think media can do wonders for educating people, there’s so many books and films out there that are made by people of colour, it’s just unfortunately they’re sometimes a bit harder to find. Again, due to white supremacy. From attempting to read a book from every country in the world, I have learnt so much about different countries and people and moments in history that I was never taught in school. The Brits were generally the bad guys in many historical events, but that’s not how we’re taught it.
This leads onto a small thing I am taking part in to try and help those who need it.
I’ve been a part of JumpCut Online for over two years now and they really are the coolest and nicest bunch of people. Last year was the first time we did a big fundraising activity and we each fundraised for different charities that were close to our hearts. This year we’ve decided to combine our efforts and all the money raised will be split equally between two charities – Black Lives Matter and The Trussell Trust.
Over twenty people will be doing different film or gaming-related challenges to raise as much money as possible between Monday 8 June and Sunday 12 July. On Friday 12 June I will be spending 24 hours watching as many Netflix Original movies as possible. I chose the “theme” of Netflix Originals because I for one don’t watch them that quick after they’re released as I know they will be on the service forever and because some are great, some are terrible and there’s a load of different genres so it’s going to be an interesting experience.
People who donate can choose a film for me to watch from the 335 available (I know, I made a Letterboxd list with them all) and I might do some Twitter polls so people can help me choose what I watch as well. Out of the 335 Netflix Originals, I’ve only watched 40 of them so there’s a whole lot of different genres and films both “good” and “bad” that I could end up watching.
There are some big-name award winners I haven’t watched; Roma, The Irishman, Marriage Story and Beasts of No Nation to name a few. Then there’s all the teen movies I haven’t watched like Sierra Burgess is a Loser, The Half of It, To All the Boys P.S. I Still Love You and The Perfect Date. Honestly the list of popular (whether for good or bad reasons) Netflix Originals I haven’t watched is endless.
And looking at Netflix’s output there’s just so much that it’ll be an emotional rollercoaster if I end up going from a thriller to a romcom to sci-fi. Not to mention all the horror films – fun fact, I am a wuss so if you want to torture me pick a horror film.
Please consider donating to support me and the JumpCut fam as we’d love to smash last years fundraising achievement and raise as much money as possible to two very worthy causes.
You can follow along on Twitter where the hashtag we will all be using is #JumpCutCharityInitiative and I’ll be tweeting my thoughts on the films I watch and maybe sharing a couple of videos too – depends on how awake and functioning I am as the day goes on!
Remember, Black Lives Matter.