Fighting against a system determined to hold individuals back requires as much determination as the opposition puts forth. It can be frustrating to the activists taking on such a challenge, especially when progress moves along at a snail’s pace. However, when inspired, committed, fervent leaders step forward to address those issues, it’s remarkable how much momentum it can generate to move things forward, yielding tremendous backing and prompting surprising rapidity.
Willingly excluding certain segments of society makes absolutely no sense. By denying productive, creative individuals from the ability to participate in the development of our world, we run the risk of cutting ourselves off from innovations that make our life more fulfilling, enjoyable and equitable. Unfortunately, there are close-minded forces out there that would seek to restrict some of us from the liberties and freedoms that help to make society thrive in healthy and satisfying ways. And those who are left on the outside looking in must decide whether they want to surrender and conform or to rebel and challenge such limiting ways of thinking.
When faced with a seemingly insurmountable challenge, it would be easy to throw in the towel. At the same time, though, when we also know that what we wish to bring into being is something we must do, such awareness compels us to strive ever forward, regardless of the effort and cost involved. But how can that be accomplished?
How can millions of allegedly mentally ill individuals be "cured" of their conditions overnight with the stroke of a pen? That's what LGBTQ+ activists were able to achieve in 1973,
Imagine being saddled with a label that was anything but true. What’s more, imagine being cruelly persecuted for that erroneous characterization, subjected to emotional and even physical abuse, making life unbearable. Prejudice, discrimination and harassment are nearly constant companions, and such treatment is often inflicted by one’s nearest and dearest, including family members. If it’s possible to picture that, then you have an idea what it might have been like for members of a patently and unfairly disrespected minority community that did nothing to earn or deserve such disgrace.
We’ve all been led to believe that “Love conquers all.” But is that really the case? Aren’t there situations that arise where, no matter how much love is present, it can’t solve every problem that arises?
The Whitaker St. Louis International Film Festival recently completed its 2020 edition in its first-ever all-virtual format. With the future of theatrical screenings in limbo due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this alternative approach made it possible for the Festival to go forward, and it worked remarkably well, enabling viewers to screen a variety of films while remaining safe at home. As has been the case with other such events this year, this is a viable approach well worth considering for future programs, even without the threat of a pandemic. It makes it possible to offer the Festival’s films to a wider audience and provides flexible viewing conditions, benefits not necessarily available when presented exclusively in theatrical venues. Because of this [...]
“Cicada” (2020). Cast: Matthew Fifer, Sheldon D. Brown, Sandra Bauleo, Cobie Smulders, Jazmin Green Grimaldi, Scott Adsit, Michael Potts, David Burtka, Jason “Freckles” Greene, Beau Curran, Bowen Yang. Directors: Matthew Fifer and Kieran Mulcare. Screenplay: Matthew Fifer and Sheldon D. Brown. Web site. Trailer. Healing old wounds can be a long and painful process, especially if we’re unclear about the nature or source of the hurt. When we are, though, the path to overcoming trauma can be a seemingly unending one in which the anguish never goes away, leaving us feeling as if there’s no hope for recovery or a future worth looking forward to. But, many times, and often quite unexpectedly, something happens that sets us off in a [...]
“Vice” (2018). Cast: Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Steve Carell, Sam Rockwell, Tyler Perry, Alison Pill, Jesse Plemons, Bill Camp, Eddie Marsan, Justin Kirk, LisaGay Hamilton, Don McManus, Lily Rabe, Matthew Jacobs, Kyle S. More, Kirk Bovill, Sam Massaro, John Hillner, William Goldman, Paul Yoo, Joseph Beck, Tony Graham, Alex Kingi, Terri Cavanaugh. Archive Footage: Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Barbara Walters, Tom Brokaw, Mike Pence, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Jeff Sessions, Bill O’Reilly. Director: Adam McKay. Screenplay: Adam McKay. Web site. Trailer. Power makes much possible. It can be wielded to achieve tremendous, beneficial outcomes. It can also be mangled in contorted ways to fulfill self-serving ends. But, no matter how it’s employed, power comes with consequences of either a positive or [...]