When black men get together to support other black men, it can be a beautiful thing. NBA players and celebs Etan Thomas, Amare Stoudemire, John Wallace, Chris Broussard, Malcom Shabazz, Styles P, and Messiah Ramkissoon got together to visit Riker’s Island prison to speak to the men there about the importance of being a good father. The lessons on manhood, success and self-awareness are invaluable for the inmates, some of whom were never given the chance to internalize their capacity for greatness.
Fatherhood is the main topic discussed with the inmates ranging in the young ages of 14 to 18 years. Etan Thomas and his star studded panel touch on topics such as, gangs, respect, life, the system, and fatherhood. Etan Thomas delivers tough love and an inspiring message to the young inmates, leaving them with a little more hope that there is still time to change and make a difference in their own lives. The other men on the panel also step in with their own expertise to give these men hope for the future.
While there are sad stories in abundance about the numbers of black men who end up in prison, the film “Hoodwinked” shows that there is also a great deal of potential for black male success. Black men are going to college in record numbers, and many of them are elevating above the stereotypes being marketed to them through mass media. One great example is this collection of athletes and artists who are not visiting the prison to glamorize self-destructive habits. Instead, they are there to stamp them out.