'Power in Action': Brings Forth Awareness, Love and Unity
Keith Lamont Scott, Terence Crutcher, Alfred Olango, Philando Castile, and Alton Sterling...
These are just a few names of black, unarmed men who lost their lives at the hands of police. With the countless police shootings taking place, many are becoming fed up and are seeking justice.
With social media becoming a 24-hour news cycle, it is almost impossible to avoid seeing a video of police fatally shooting black men. After seeing the recent killings of Terence Crutcher and Keith Lamont Scott, comedian, Cedric The Entertainer did not find these killings as a joke but, a problem.
To help create change, the legendary comedian initiated a call to action and asked for members of Hollywood and the community to stand with him in love, peace, power and solidarity for the families and loved ones of the lives lost to police.
"After those two killings, I just was really motivated to make a lot of voice." said Cedric.
His call to action was heard. Last night, the community of Los Angeles joined forces with Cedric and celebrities to participate in what was called, the 'Power in Action'. A sea of all shades of skin marched in support of initiatives that invoke positive social and political change.
The peaceful march started at the intersection of Wilton and Sunset and ended with a rally outside CNN’s Los Angeles tower.
"This has to be a contorted effort. People are going to be standing up and crying out everywhere. You see the marches, rallies, and riots when things are at their apex but, a lot like Colin Kaepernick, you just stand because you can. You make an effort because this is what you want to do. You put your neck out on the line for people to say, 'This is not right. This is not fair. This must change,''' said Cedric. He then added, "This is why we are gathered here today. We want to get this message out there that we are asking for and looking for police reform. We are getting the right organizations behind us. We are also encouraging people to vote."
Hundreds were present at the march and rally. Hollywood participants included actress/model, Eva Marcille; casting director, Robi Reed; actress, Claudia Jordan; actress, Gabrielle Dennis; L.A. Hair reality star, China; actor, Kendrick Sampson; television personality, Tanika Ray; actress, Elise Neal, and many more entertainers. Russell Simmons and Tina Knowles-Lawson, were also due to attend the Wednesday night event in Hollywood but suffered last-minute travel delays.
Wakiesha Wilson's mother, Lisa Hines was also in attendance. Wilson was found dead in her jail cell Easter Sunday, March 27 from an alleged suicide. Wilson was expected to be released within a few days of her death, but when her mother, Lisa Hines called the courts on March 29, she was told that her daughter’s name was not listed.
"Everybody needs to come together and join hands. We all need to stand up against police brutality. They are wrong. They are taking our lives and our babies' lives every single day," said Hines. She continued, "I just pray that we can put an end to the police killing our kids and elders. We just need to come together and stand up against them. Together, we can do this. I am out here for all of us, all the ones they have been taken from us and everyone who is out here today. We don't know who is going to be next. I don't want to be a hashtag, I don't want you to be a hashtag. I wouldn't miss this for nothing in the world."
Actor, Kendrick Sampson said, "This is called 'Power in Action' because it is to show you that there is power in action. To empower you to go out after you leave here and take action, to wake up in the morning and take action and to wake up every day asking, ' What can I do to affect change?' That is what we need to do, we need to encourage and empower our brothers and sisters who are black, who are brown, who are white, Asian, Muslim, Christian Buddhist — whatever you believe, whatever you look like, we need to encourage each other." Sampson ended with, "If one of us is not okay, then none of us are okay. We have a duty on this earth to be our brother's and sister's keeper. That is our duty, whether you like it or not. We need to not stop until every single one of us are okay."