The Black-ish Episode on Hope Challenges us to Care

Black-ish, the ABC sitcom in its second year of delivering powerful messages amid laughs, brought home the controversial issues revolving around police shootings and young African-American males in its most recent episode on “Hope.”

As the multi-generational family gathered around the TV waiting to hear the verdict in the most recent incident, each family member – from the grandfather who thought the police were thugs to the mom who wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt – voiced their opinions as news reports unfolded across the screen.

One of the threads that tied the story together was that the parents wanted to shield their two youngest children from the story. But as the episode unfolds, they come to realize in our ever-connected world of digital media, they needed to tell them themselves.

While we as adults have our own filters when it comes to issues of race, politics, and justice, this episode is a powerful reminder that each generation has to come to terms with the reality of the world, and it’s the older generation’s responsibility to show the youngest that they will do everything in their power to overcome so their children can live in a better world.

Questions for discussion:

  1. How do you protect children from the harsh realities of injustice and violence? When is the right time to talk about these issues?
  2. How do you offer them hope in the midst of what seems to be overwhelming odds?
  3. What experiences of overcoming do you have to share from your own life-story?
  4. How are you showing them through your own actions that you care about making the world a more just place for everyone?

More stories on this episode:

Black-ish and How to Talk to Kids About Police Brutality, The Atlantic
With Police Brutality Episode, ‘black-ish’ Shows How Sitcoms Can Still Matter, New York Times