Reflections of '#SayHerName: An Evening of Arts & Action'
After performance: Justice for our sisters, daughters, mothers and loved ones up above
Photo: Frances Garrett (right) uplifts daughter Michelle Cusseaux. After being diagnosed with HIV in 92, Frances Garrett rose to be a notable health advocate, founding the African American Hispanic Health Education Resource Center. Tragedy struck in Aug. 2014 when Frances' eldest daughter Michelle Cusseaux was killed at close range by a Phoenix police officer who had been called to escort her to a mental health facility. Frances marched her daughter's casket through city's downtown. Her continued efforts led to reform, with Phoenix creating mental health advisory board and adding police crisis intervention team
Spoken word activist and unapologetically Black artist Kamil Oshundara's (right) performance raised the roof. Kamil is an Isa (priestess) of Shango in her indigenous tradition, Yoruba.
The talented Tina Meeks (left) sings "Me and You Against the World" during ACT 1: LIFE in front of screen collage showing victims
Recording artist Nailah Porter (left), a self-described 'global citizen committed to joy', beautifully sang "Strange Fruit" during ACT 11: LOSS
(Photo right) Radio host Laura Flanders, left, hosted event's Talk Back portion and photographer Paula Allen, right, helped document evening's special moments
Black Lives Matter co-founder and artist Patrisse Cullors leads audience in Assata Shakur closing chant: "It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains."
(Left) Following evenings three act performance was Talk Back, a panel featuring the family members of Black women victimized by police brutality speaking about their experiences and loved ones. Panelists included (left to right) Vicki Mcadory, Auntie-Momma to India Beatty, Rhanda Dormeus, Mother of Korryn Gaines' and Maria Moore, Sister of Kayla Moore. Hosted by Laura Flanders. Vicki McaDory emailed us the following, “On March 19, 2016, my niece, who I helped raised, and loved as a daughter, was murdered in cold blood by Norfolk Virginia Police. India Beaty was 25. Her death was a result of FIVE bullets entering her body from her rear and side body. She never even saw who her assassins were. Yet she so called posed a threat to the cowards holding a license and a desire to take an innocent life. Please, anyone who can explain the justice in this...you have my full attention”
L.A. based poet Douglas Kearney (right), who teaches African American studies at CalArts, read "The Black Woman's Tear Monger"
|Photo from Rekia Boyd vigil at Union Square, NYC|
Last month's candlelight vigil for Chyna Gibson at Louis Armstrong Park, New Orleans