Detroit Police Chief James Craig said on the red carpet that "this is a part of our history." This is one I'll note that doesn't get taught in schools, which I think is a terrible lapse of the education system. But looking at it from that perspective, if you are not made aware of the historical relevance of these incidents and remain ignorant, you are doomed to repeat it for not learning the lessons it teaches.
Obviously, within history, we have many people who haven't learned from these tragedies and patterns of war, and the dictatorships of old that parallel the ones we see today, even in our own government. The same goes for the Detroit Riots. If we aren't careful, the right push could cause everything that has been repaired in the city to fall apart again. People don't like that notion and will act like that's a dramatic interpretation, but looking at the world, it's entirely possible.
Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, a professor at Georgetown University, and a Detroit Native, also stopped everyone's commentary when introducing Bigelow to the stage, on why did a "white woman" have to tell this story, versus a black director. He defended Bigelow, posing the question "Can she use and leverage her white privilege to identify with black and brown people who are demonized? Isn't that the ultimate use of deconstructing white privilege to identify with those who are nameless and faceless in this society?" The answer is a resounding yes. Because even though many years it's been expressed by countless African Americans, if a white woman makes an award-winning movie, a contender for Oscars, maybe, just maybe, some of these 1%ers and bigots will actually be exposed to something with substance.
Despite the fact that I basically lost it for a few days and fell apart because I felt powerless, I know I can't save the world. I am just one person. After the full discussion on social media that I had with friends, one told me that we were always going to be outnumbered by people of varying degrees of racism, and we weren't going to be able to change other people. He said, "If we change ourselves then that's all the change we need to do."
With that in mind, I call you to see 'Detroit.' The film will make you feel raw. It will drain you of energy. It will keep you on the edge of your seat, and it will make you feel "some kind of way." You may not react how I did, or be as moved as I was, but the fact that you're making a point to see it means you are willing to see, period. We need to realize in this country that hate is not the answer. And in the end, the only thing standing in our way is ourselves.