I have been a fan of movies for years, and my favorite movies are still Sunset Boulevard and Carmen Jones. So, in watching this year’s Academy Awards–I was beyond excited! In the age of COVID-19, it was good to have that anchoring piece, that familiarity of movies (even though I have not been inside a movie theater in over a year). When Angela Bassett did the intro for the In Memoriam segment? I almost lost my composure.

I was going to lose it if they forgot Chadwick (because the Academy forgets someone every year!), and I was going to lose it if he had won a posthumous award for his portrayal of Levee in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.

It was a reminder of just how excellent Black artists are, how needed they are, and just what it means to become one. Also, it reminded me of the words of Afeni Shakur (Tupac’s mother). She said how great and influential The Arts are in the life of children…especially Black children.

Let this be the reminder to speak to the artists in your life. Stop squashing that in favor of what you think would ‘make them more money’ rather than what corresponds to what direction God is pointing them.


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