New Series “Two Sides” Examines The Lives & Legacies Of Those Who Died In Police Custody & Sparked Social Change
The mother of Eric Garner said she still wrestles with forgiving the police officers who killed her son three years ago.
“I pray every night to forgive,” Gwen Carr said of her son Eric Garner’s death. “Because you have to forgive for yourself. But when someone takes your child away, it’s so hard. I pray to God every night to forgive me because I haven’t forgiven them.”
Garner died in the midst of an arrest in 2014, and his final words, “I can’t breathe,” ignited protests around the world.
Carr said the lack of accountability in the death of Garner, a married father, makes it even worse.
“Maybe in time when justice comes,” she said, “I will have a better sense of forgiveness in my heart. Because there has been no justice.”
Garner’s life, death and the movement it sparked is one of the subjects of “Two Sides,” a new docu-series from TV One that examines four cases – Eric Garner, John Crawford, Sandra Bland and Ezell Ford – that became symbols in the social justice fight.
Instead of reenactments, the series uses actual footage from the incidents and goes in-depth with the people who were involved. Oscar winner Viola Davis is one of the series’ executive producers, and her producing partner Lemuel Plummer said his goal for “Two Sides” was to “bridge the gap between black and blue.”
“We’re not taking a biased approach,” Plummer said, “We’re hearing from all sides. We want the audience walking away understanding why this is happening, and why police officers end up making these decisions.”
Shante Needham, the sister of Sandra Bland, agreed with Carr, and said every day has been a struggle since losing her sibling, especially when she sees more cases of people dying at the hands of police officers.
“Well of course, we have to forgive if we say we are children of God,” Needham said. “But it’s the act of forgetting. I still ask three years later, ‘Why?’ Why did they do this to my sister?”
Needham added that she hoped viewers would see the show as a call to action.
“When you see something, speak up,” she said. “Stop letting things go under the rug…so our kids and grandkids don’t have to come up in the manner we have.”
“Two Sides” will air Jan. 22 on TV One.
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