Editor’s Note: The Wilmington Journal strongly endorses Orlando Jones’ effort to help the families of those whose loved one suffered a human rights violation and resulted in death. This fund is being created to help those all over this county and could very easily help families in this area. Please attend this worthwhile fundraiser. See ad on page 2. Questions regarding the fund may be directed to Shawn or Mary Alice Thatch at The Wilmington Journal at 910-762-5502.
KENANSVILLE, NC – Actor, writer, comedian and activist Orlando Jones has created a social action fund in light of the most recent police shooting, this time involving South Carolina native, Walter Scott.
Jones, who was born and raised in South Carolina, will donate a portion of the proceeds of his self-headlining Color of Laughter Comedy and Music Festival to the pilot project.
The event, featuring hip-hop activist Talib Kweli, will be held at the Duplin County Events Center on April 25.
The project – aptly called the Orlando Jones’ Foolish Desperado Fund – aims to galvanize the public into action.
“I make my living being foolish but like so many of us I am desperate for change,” said Jones. “By doing a concert with Talib Kweli and giving away part of the proceeds, I want to create a platform that will ensure that the families of those killed, including Miriam Carey, Jordan Russell Davis, Latasha Harlins, Rekia Boyd, Anthony Lee and many many others, have a chance to define the narrative about their loved ones before the media and others do it for them.”
The shooting hits close to home for Jones, who is an alumni of the College of Charleston. He’s known for his extensive career in film and television with “new classics” such as ‘Drumline’, ‘The Replacements’, ‘Time Machine’, ‘Double Take’, ‘Office Space’ and his recent role as Captain Frank Irving on Fox’s ‘Sleepy Hollow’. The actor has used his national platform to draw attention to human rights issues; yet, demonizing cops is far from the actor’s aim.
“I’ve been pulled over by police on numerous occasions. Sometimes I deserved to be stopped and cited. Other times I fit the description, or that’s just what police protocol is in that particular area. But law enforcement officers are not the enemy,” said Jones.
“They have an extremely difficult job. They risk their lives daily in the line of duty. I do not believe that any of these murders were committed by coldblooded killers, I do believe that these people acted out of fear, but an unjustified fear has never been an excuse for taking someone’s life. Something must be done about the breakdown in trust and accountability we’ve been witnessing on the national stage from Ferguson to New York, from California to Ohio.” The increasing violence and loss of black life cannot continue,” Jones said.
“If all lives matter then we can no longer excuse nor ignore the fact that far too many black men and women are still dying,” he said. “I sincerely hope people who are offended by the phrase, ‘Black Lives Matter,’ can do this basic math.”
ABOUT THE COLOR OF LAUGHTER COMEDY AND MUSIC FESTIVAL
The festival will feature performances by Jones, Kweli, and rapper NIKO IS, dance crew RemoteKontrol, local comedians Cliff Cash and Matt White, Coast 97.3’s Bigg B and MC Brick Jackson.
Tickets are $22 in advance and $25 at the door and are available for purchase at the DuplinEvent.com