Everyday Activist - Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race and America (CUFF.Docs 2016)

Posted on Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at 09:00 PM

Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race and America (CUFF.Docs 2016)

Movie Review by Everyday Activist X CalgaryMovies.com

My mom loves CNN, so one day I walked by her television and noticed that this black gentleman, comedian W. Kamau Bell, was talking to the KKK. I was completely convinced they were going to lynch him on CNN! Yes, I believe anything can happen in the US. I couldn’t watch, though my mom swore it was an interesting piece. When I read the description that Accidental Courtesy was about another black gentleman, Daryl Davis, talking to the KKK, again I had my doubts thinking it might be another satire piece, but gave it chance. The documentary is hands down one of the best of the ones I have watched for CUFF.Docs 2016.

Daryl Davis had an unconventional upbringing. His father worked internationally for the U.S government and was able to travel with his family. Thus Daryl was exposed to all different types of people and their cultures, throughout the world from a young age. On coming back to the US, his parents had to explain racism to him. His response was how could people not like him if they didn’t know him? As a result he went out and made friends with the KKK leaders and members going as far as to lend them his bus, so they could do their marches. Afterwards, they went to Daryl’s house and had a few drinks. As I said earlier, anything can happen in the US. From their friendship with Daryl, many of the Klan members gave up their positions leaving him their costumes.

Despite the clear effectiveness of his strategy to open up dialogue with white supremacists versus react in violence, not everyone agreed with Daryl’s methods. What bothered me the most was members of the African American community wouldn’t have a conversation with him. They talked but didn’t want to listen to what he wanted to tell them. To defend their violent actions, they talked about Martin Luther King’s radicalization during the last few years of his life and look where that got him. Violence begets violence. We have to approach problems from a different consciousness than the one they are created in, in order to solve them. If they were created in violence then they need to be dealt with by some other means, such as peaceful conversations with the focus to educate rather than spread hate.

The movie starts with a wonderful quote from Senator Robert Kennedy, in Capetown South Africa, “Few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and the total of these acts will be written the history of [each] generation.” While Daryl is a musician, he has written a book and taken time to travel around the US to deliver lectures to students about a different type of activism that has proven to work. If members of the KKK can be converted, anyone can be with the right motivation consisting of openness and friendship.

Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race and America will be screening as part of CUFF.Docs 2016 at the Globe Cinema, Thursday November 17th, 2016 at 7:00 pm. Tickets can be purchased Online or at the door

Calgary Showtimes: CUFF.Docs 2016 > | Accidental Courtesy: Daryl Davis, Race and America >


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