In just a single episode from the newest season of Orange Is The New Black, the writers managed not only to kill one of its most cherished characters but to create conscience in its viewers about one of the most controversial topics discussed in our society today, the Black Lives Matter Movement.
What begins to be a pacific strike in the series (a way to promote their support of the Black Lives Matter Movement) turns into a tragic moment that results in Poussey, played by actress Samira Wiley, being crushed and suffocated to death by a guard, echoing the tragic real life event of Eric Garner’s death.
According to blacklivesmatter.com, the movement was created in 2013 by Patrice Cullors, Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi to create awareness about morality and motivate actions to stop anti-black racism that still continues in our society. This international social organization’s goal is to promote equal human rights for black people and stop killings by law enforcement, police brutality, racial profiling and inequality in the American criminal justice system.
The organization started in 2013 after the murder of Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old high school student who was shot by George Zimmerman during an altercation.
The Black Lives Matter Movement’s development has increased since the more recent attacks on Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota after being shot by a police officer while being arrested in front of his girlfriend, and Alton Sterling, who was murdered after being shot several times by a police officer while being arrested in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
According to mappingpoliceviolence.org, in 2015 police officers killed at least 102 unarmed black people across the United States. In addition, the site states that out of a certain amount of police killings against criminals, 37 percent of those were unarmed black people, despite that black people only represent 13 percent of the American population.
These horrible and outrageous events demonstrate how often black people have been mistreated just because of their skin color and at the same time show the blind power white people have gained just because of wearing a uniform and a badge.
Racism against black people has always been an issue in America since the colonial era, when they were treated as slaves by wealthy white people. Being of a minority ethnicity in the U.S. gives us a greater probability of being mistreated and judged by our society because of our traditions or cultures. However, people should realize that our differences are what make us stand out from anybody else.
As a community we should enforce respect, empathy and tolerance toward of others because that is what will make us become a better society, not only by promoting equal human rights and diversity toward everyone, but by instilling future generations with morals and values. We need to remember the importance of teaching and transmitting tolerance and respect in order for us to advance as a society. Without it we lose the essence that makes our country united.