Actress Regina King has spoken up about the difficulties of raising a young black man in America amid the ongoing fight to end racial injustice.
In an interview on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the Oscar winner discussed how she has ongoing conversations with her 24-year-old son, Ian Alexander Jr., about how to interact with police officers. Regina explained: “I think in most homes, Black homes, it’s not just a conversation. It’s an ongoing conversation.”
As well as revealing the extent of the difficult conversations she has had with her son, she also discussed the Black Lives Matter protests that are sweeping the country in the wake of the death of African-American George Floyd at the hands of white police officers in Minneapolis.
The Watchmen actress continued: “The anger that they have, it just compounds every time something like this happens. It’s another moment that’s telling them that they’re not worthy… their lives are not valuable once they walk outside of the comfort of their homes.”
Regina King says the conversation keeps shifting
King further explained that the conversation African-American families have with their children is continually shifting. She said parents support their children’s anger at racism but also try to convince them to behave in a way that won’t provoke a response that means they don’t come home again.
She said: “the conversation shifts every time. You have to find a way to support their feelings and make sure that you’re letting them know that you hear them and that you do mirror the same sentiment.”
“But you don’t want them to do anything that’s going to put themselves in a situation that they may not come back home; they may not talk to you again.”
Elsewhere in the interview, King encouraged her fans to go out and vote in elections, both regional and national. She said: “the only way to change [things] is to get out and vote. The way we can make changes to these systemic problems is to make systematic changes to the laws.”
Nick Cannon and Michael Jordan have also spoken about racial inequality
Regina King is one of a large number of celebrities who have spoken up about racial inequality since the death of George Floyd. Nick Cannon wrote an essay last week where he called for a “new normal” and suggested that police officers be renamed as “peace officers.”
Even basketball legend Michael Jordan made a rare foray into politics last weekend when he released a statement to social media condemning police brutality and called for more racial equality.