Marlon Riggs talks a great deal about how he has been influenced by other African American leaders. He alludes to the idea that other leaders and artists have laid the foundation for his work. Yet, at the same time he also acknowledges what is missing. He tells the stories that he hopes will serve as a foundation for a future generation of artists. I got the sense for the Resolutions reading that the gay African American community is somewhat resentful of the way heterosexual African Americans have found success in mainstream media. However, I would argue that that success, as limited as it may be, still paves the way for more stories in the future. I see Marlon Riggs as a step in the right direction. Just as he looked to past leaders to create the space for his content, he is creating the space for new artists to tell their stories.
I found this video of Kerry Washington accepting an NAACP Image Award over the summer and I think she does a really good job of articulating the importance of telling stories.