So I’m Hoping This Poem Will Make You Reflect
Movies have been slow to come out of Hollywood this year, but Dexter Darden’s new movie, The Binge, is available for viewing on Hulu. “I just feel so blessed and so lucky that people are fortunate enough to have a laugh right now. You know, having people being able to relate to it and get that newfound humor, we felt like it is a really, really, really, really special thing,” says Darden, who has also joined Bayside High School as Devante for the Saved by the Bell reboot, which is “such a legendary TV show from everything that it did for bridging the gap on racial stereotypes.” Additionally, he has starred as late civil-rights leader and longtime Georgia congressman John Lewis in Son of the South (“I hope that I can do things on camera that help people remember him and his legacy”).
Furthermore, mentioning the grand jury’s ruling in the death of Breonna Taylor, Darden advocates for racial justice. “I really just wanted to bring awareness to the world that things are happening right now that need to be taken care of,” he adds, referring to his poem, “SILENCE,” about the unjust acts that come from remaining silent. “We all have a position and were all blessed to be in a position to do our part, and I think with ‘SILENCE,’ that was my thing. I really wanted to raise awareness to the community, saying that we have a responsibility to use our platform to combat racial injustice. Just because I am on television and make movies and I’m blessed to be in the position that I am in, that doesn’t mean that I’m any different from any other African-American males walking to a 7-ELEVEn.”
Darden says that the lockdown has given an opening for the movement to be projected. “[People] have the opportunity of being in the house and really focused inward on themselves. Taking this as a time to rectify certain things that they saw problems with inspired a lot of people to really get out on the streets and really get out on the frontline. So you know what? We can protest, we can march, we can move safely with masks, and find ways to inspire people,” he shares. “We’ve come a long way, but we have a long way to go.”
Darden further elaborates that this year marks only the beginning for change to take effect and for this nation to heal and work for diversity, equity, and inclusion, ensuring a fairer and safer future, in a post-COVID world. “We need to not be afraid to have the uncomfortable conversation. And I think we need to do a better job. Instead of being afraid of asking the questions, let’s just ask them and have the uncomfortable answers, because that’s how we keep an open dialogue for change in the right direction,” he says.
Writer: Savannah Dial
Photographer: Daniel Lennox
Men’s Grooming: Courtney Housner (for Exclusive Artists Management - using tarte cosmetics & Embryolisse)
Editor: Eiko Watanabe
Special thanks to EPK Media (@myepk & @epkmedia - epkmedia.com)