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  1. What Do You Think? By Rhonda Hansome

    Thursday, October 31, 2013

    In between camera set-ups, while working back ground (more commonly known as "extra work") on a film not to be named, I drifted into a conversation with fellow actors. I have no idea how the conversation started but that didn’t stop me from listening as an actress of Thai extraction described how she and her husband were pleasure driving their "not great looking car" through a very upscale Long Island neighborhood.

    “The police pulled us over for no reason and asked why we were there, because we 'didn’t look like we belonged in that neighborhood.'  I told him we were just looking, and he handed me a no seat belt summons. I said, ‘Why you give me a no seat belt ticket when I am wearing my seat belt?’ He said, ‘Oh sorry, just take the ticket to the judge and I’ll explain everything.’  When I got to court the judge made me pay half the fine.  I said, ‘I did nothing wrong, why do I have to pay anything?’  ‘Come back to court if you want to fight it.’ the judge said."

      No one promises life is fair 

    A person using a legal gift card, legitimate credit card or a bundle of hard earned cash, to buy a ridiculously expensive designer item, may be subject to being detained, searched, publicly interrogated and hand-cuffed by police or in-store security, have the purchase questioned and confiscated with no explanation or apology.

    "How could police on a life alert call hurl racial slurs, taser and then shoot to kill a senior citizen after he assured them and the life alert operator (on the line with him) multiple times that he was fine?
    68 year old ex-Marine Kenneth Chamberlain was killed by police responding to his life alert going off accidentally.

    On the set I entered the conversation, saying the actress' experience reminded me that for a person of color you can never have the expectation of being treated fairly, like in the Kenneth Chamberlain tragedy.  That's when an actor vigorously denied any comparison. When I presented him with this article, he responded "You were not there, that's just one person's opinion."

    At that moment I started laughing because I realized I was not dealing with reality or even facts, I was dealing with perception.  Indeed, "It's just one person's opinion." 

    I'm still laughing and shaking my head.
    What do you think?

    By the way, speaking of my head, I just cut my hair...

    See you 8 PM Thursday Nov. 5th at Gotham Comedy Club

    Make your reservation now! Lady is the discount code:
    212-679000 or online

  2. 6 comments:

    1. two things: one, I love the hair. two, you weren't there for the Thai woman's experience either. it was her perception that she was wearing her seatbelt and that she was given a ticket for not wearing one. good for you for laughing. it is infuriating, but we must preserve ourselves, I know.

    2. Anonymous said...

      Rhonda your hair looks great! Unfortunately for a lot of people they don't see minorities and women as equal, and think that that kind of treatment is perfectly fine for them, just as long as no one ever treats them like that.

    3. RHC said...

      Thank you Mindy & Lisa. I appreciate the response.

    4. Babygirl said...

      That man was speaking from the White privileged perspective that most Whites carry. If he bothered to research what happened to Mr. Chamberlain and countless others, he would be better informed. But instead he assumed - like most White males in this society do (or people who can pass for white like George Zimmerman and hold racist attitudes). Laughing it off was probably best because until he is enlightened, if he reaches that point, he just doesn't get it. I had a Trayvon who was killed when I was a teenager, I have seen children profiled in my suburban NY "melting pot" hometown while I was growing up, as well as in my adulthood. It's real. It happens. And acting like its a matter of perception is a copout. If more people read Tim Tyson's books they might get it. It is why my (White) Mom's book title is I Didn't Know What I Didn't Know, because she didn't but she made a point to learn which most don't bother to do.

      P.S. Love the cut!!.

    5. Unknown said...

      Ah yes, PERCEPTION, amazing thing to ponder!!

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