The FX Network’s critically acclaimed show Atlanta is a juggernaut of raw emotion.
Tuesday’s episode took on a pivotal message in reference to racial inequality in America today. The scene details the hypocrisy in valuing the sanctity of animals over human life.
When Darius, arguably the most riveting character in the series, appears halfway into the episode, he’s seen carrying around a poster encased in a cardboard tube. He arrives at a shooting range, casually unravels the poster, attaches it to the target post, and begins practice.
The camera pans to reveal a dog outline as the target instead of the default human image found at most shooting ranges. It’s also important to note he’s the only Black person at the shooting range.
This is what Darius does–he lives in this world, but on his own terms. Darius is free.
“What do you think you’re doing?” another man asks in a thick southern drawl, clearly outraged.
Darius responds that where he’s from, the dogs are “crazy.”
“You can’t shoot a dog!” the man laments.
But it’s Darius’ response that tore me to pieces: “Well, why would I shoot at a human target?”
Many compare Atlanta to Twin-Peaks, but it lives in its own lane–forcing us to laugh, definitely ponder, and sometimes well over with emotion at the sobering nuances of life for millions of young Black Americans.
For 30 minutes, the audience rides the wave of show-runner Donald Glover’s comedic wit. It’s amazing what the show accomplishes in a short period, capturing the doubts, fears, small victories, and defeats of life lived in a Black body.
On Wednesday, we woke up to another police shooting, claiming the life of another Black man named Alfred Olango. The story is convoluted with different eyewitness accounts, along with a separate narrative by the police. Was he unarmed? Was he compliant? There are reports that Olango was disabled and in distress at the time of the shooting.
What remains irreversible is that Olango is dead. Another family in grief, another community ravaged. And sadly, even after police release the footage, “justice” will be difficult to measure.
There’s a fictional scene in the movie Fruitvale Station detailing the last days of Oscar Grant. Grant’s character finds a stray dog gasping for breath after a hit and run accident. In the scene, Grant and the dog become one–both will later die on the pavement. Will anyone help? Does anyone care? The scene begs the question.
Today, an animal’s life is valued over human life. There’s fierce advocacy for animal equality, but silence when it comes to the countless police shootings involving Black men and women in this country. Shootings where there are bodies left sprawled out for examination and visual consumption–like a dead dog lying in the street.
VIDEO SOURCE: Twitter | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
47 Black Men And Boys Killed By Police
1. Botham Shem Jean, 261 of 47
2. Antwon Rose Jr., 172 of 47
3. Robert Lawrence White, 413 of 47
4. Anthony Lamar Smith, 24Source:Getty 4 of 47
5. Ramarley Graham, 18Source:Getty 5 of 47
6. Manuel Loggins Jr., 31Source:Getty 6 of 47
7. Trayvon Martin, 17Source:Getty 7 of 47
8. Wendell Allen, 20Source:Getty 8 of 47
9. Kendrec McDade, 19Source:Getty 9 of 47
10. Larry Jackson Jr., 32Source:Getty 10 of 47
11. Jonathan Ferrell, 24Source:Getty 11 of 47
12. Jordan Baker, 26Source:Getty 12 of 47
13. Victor White lll, 22Source:Getty 13 of 47
14. Dontre Hamilton, 31Source:Getty 14 of 47
15. Eric Garner, 43Source:Getty 15 of 47
16. John Crawford lll, 22Source:Getty 16 of 47
17. Michael Brown, 18Source:Getty 17 of 47
18. Ezell Ford, 25Source:Getty 18 of 47
19. Dante Parker, 36Source:Getty 19 of 47
20. Kajieme Powell, 25Source:Getty 20 of 47
21. Laquan McDonald, 17Source:Getty 21 of 47
22. Akai Gurley, 28Source:Getty 22 of 47
23. Tamir Rice, 12Source:Getty 23 of 47
24. Rumain Brisbon, 34Source:Getty 24 of 47
25. Jerame Reid, 36Source:Getty 25 of 47
26. Charly Keunang, 43Source:Getty 26 of 47
27. Tony Robinson, 19Source:Getty 27 of 47
28. Walter Scott, 50Source:Getty 28 of 47
29. Freddie Gray, 25Source:Getty 29 of 47
30. Brendon Glenn, 29Source:Getty 30 of 47
31. Samuel DuBose, 43Source:Getty 31 of 47
32. Christian Taylor, 19Source:Getty 32 of 47
33. Jamar Clark, 24Source:Getty 33 of 47
34. Mario Woods, 26Source:Getty 34 of 47
35. Quintonio LeGrier, 19Source:Getty 35 of 47
36. Gregory Gunn, 58Source:Getty 36 of 47
37. Akiel Denkins, 24Source:Getty 37 of 47
38. Alton Sterling, 37Source:Getty 38 of 47
39. Philando Castile, 32Source:Getty 39 of 47
40. Terrence Sterling, 31Source:Getty 40 of 47
41. Terence Crutcher, 40Source:Getty 41 of 47
42. Keith Lamont Scott, 43Source:Getty 42 of 47
43. Alfred Olango, 38Source:Getty 43 of 47
44. Jordan Edwards, 15Source:Getty 44 of 47
45. Stephon Clark, 2245 of 47
46. Danny Ray Thomas, 3446 of 47
47. DeJuan Guillory, 2747 of 47
‘Atlanta’ Takes On The Value Of Human Life In Stirring Shooting Scene was originally published on newsone.com