Russell Simmons’ RushCard Sponsors Video Series to Change Perceptions of Black Men, Cops

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Russell Simmons, founder of RushCard and Narrative (Wikipedia)
Russell Simmons, founder of RushCard and Narrative (Wikipedia)

Russell Simmons, the founder of pre-paid credit card company RushCard, has launched a new video initiative against racial profiling. The three clips available only on mobile devices strive to change viewer’s perspectives on Black men and the police.

AdWeek reports the Simmons-founded agency Narrative developed the video series titled “Making Moves.” RushCard serves as the sponsor and two clips provide an eye-opening look at perceptions of a Black civilian and a Black cop.

In the vertical view, a clip called “Don’t Judge Me” features a Black man in a police uniform.

“Don’t judge me for how I look. You’re only shook by what you think you see or by the image that’s perpetually made in the news and on TV,” he said.

Viewed horizontally as it played, the same man wears a white tank top.

“But the fact it, you don’t really know me,” he continued.

Both clips use the same monologue. As the viewer switches views, the man continues speaking.

“Is it my appearance that scares you? If given the opportunity would you care to? We’re in dire need of a new beginning. I crave the day we can be one of one instead of one of many. Why hate me when my face is a mirror to your reflection?”

News of police brutality by and against Black men has been covered heavily since last month. July began with the back-to-back deaths of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota. It led to two police shootings allegedly by Black military veterans in Texas and Louisiana.

Since race is a sensitive topic, RushCard chose to dive head first in addressing it.

“My hope is that these videos will be a starting point for a nuanced discussion about issues that affect our community and the entire country,” Simmons said in a statement to Adweek. “I believe in the power of art to create change, and these films use art and technology to actually show that change taking place.”

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