When you’re a kid there are a few conversations with your parents that could be considered “The Talk.” Among them are the strangers and candy talk, the drug talk, the booze talk, the sex talk, and the don’t-light-random-things-on-fire talk. All of these are pretty common–with varying degrees of intensity–to all families. But a new PSA campaign shines a light on another talk, one that depends on the color of your skin.
In a new ad, New York-based youth development organization The Brotherhood/Sister Sol, and agency Saatchi & Saatchi New York, show us the police talk and how it differs along racial lines. Here we see black parents talk to their children about how to avoid potentially dangerous police encounters. The look on the kids’ faces says it all–should this really be a necessary in 2014? But recent events in Ferguson and Staten Island, and the untold number of other similar incidents, show us all it is. The ad ends with a white father telling his teenage son that the police are there to help, then asks the question, “Do we want one America… or two?”
It’s a simple question that seems to be incredibly tough to answer. In a statement, The Brotherhood/Sister Sol executive director and co-founder Khary Lazarre-White said, “This spot is a powerful commentary on the historic and present day disturbing reality that it is necessary for the parents of black children to talk to our children about how to survive police encounters. It is a video that can help parents have the talk. It is a light shined on an issue all of America needs to confront.”