My manager and friend Craig Dorfman approached me with the seed of an idea. He wanted to get involved in supporting Black Lives Matter and the voter registration/suppression arena. As a mother of a teenager I also wanted to lend my heartfelt support in a meaningful yet Covid safe way. The original idea of asking black celebrity mothers to appear with their sons was not really possible as so many of their sons were under the age of consent. So the idea evolved to asking celebrated black actors to appear with their mothers. We were all too aware that every famous black actor I knew had multiple encounters with the police due to racial profiling. These encounters were always humiliating and life threatening. I also knew that the public often sees them/us as being above that kind of treatment. We are not. I have been the victim of dangerous police profiling in a BH mall where my life could have ended in an instant. To be the mother of a black son in America is to live with terror and heartbreak in equal measure. No mother should have to live in this constant state of fear. Our sons’ lives matter. Our daughters’ lives matter. As a black mother, I am constantly aware of the perils that face my child when she leaves the house. The recent detainment of a family of young black girls in an SUV who were stopped by police looking for a stolen motorcycle is just another incident in the ongoing struggle. The protests around the country have not stopped the shootings. The only thing that can stop the shootings is to change the system and the only way to change the system is to vote.
As we formulated the idea, Craig and I approached Mykelti Williamson who immediately agreed as did his lovely mother. As Mykelti came on board we three began approaching our friends and their fierce mothers to volunteer their time and energy to help us realize the idea. Mykelti introduced us to the amazing James Lucero, Jr who was able to take our ideas and edit historical footage with the mothers and sons to illustrate the historical and systemic disregard for black lives.
This loving collaboration is meant to show our commitment to Black Lives Matter and to deeply encourage everyone go out and VOTE. All our lives are in the balance. Take Back The Power.
This is the Moment!
We are grateful to and thank:
- LOLA ADEPO AND HER SON JOVAN ADEPO
- BETTY HALL AND HER SON BRANDON MICHAEL HALL
- YOLETTE HODGE AND HER SONS ALDIS AND EDWIN HODGE
- MARLIYN UNDERWOOD AND HER SON BLAIR UNDERWOOD
- ELAINE MARSHALL AND HER SON MYKELTI WILLIAMSON
For their participation in our project. To James Lucero Jr, we offer our heartfelt thank you for seeing this project come to fruition. We hope to continue this project to include mothers and daughters, fathers and sons and fathers and daughters.
We can change thing by exercising our most cherished tool of democracy – the right to vote.
Mothers and Sons 2020 on Facebook
Mothers and Sons 2020 on Instagram
Lorraine Toussaint. 9/2020