Urgent Open Letter to Dr. Smith (and Sasha)

Note: This is an unedited, rushed first draft. I realize that I jump from addressing Dr. Smith and Sasha exclusively to addressing others too. The thrust, however, should be clear. Be sure to read the P.S. below if you read nothing else here.

Urgent Open Letter to Dr. Smith (and Sasha)
by Oxman

“The failure of ALL documentaries to date reeks.” — the home schooled teenager featured in the previous post and in this article’s P.S. [The bold quote was offered up to rhyme with the final line posted below at the very end of this piece proper.]

First of all, anyone reading this should at least glance* at both http://oxtogrind.org/archive/1487 and http://oxtogrind.org/archive/1490.

*If anything is off-putting about the writing, stop immediately. Reading is not necessary, just ideal; I don’t want to lose your interest prematurely.

Having just spoken with Sasha on the phone, it’s crystal clear that I should take him up on his offer to connect me with people associated with “American Addict” who care about the issues, who are supporting the documentary work, who… have more time than he has at present for leisurely discussion about the “supplement” I mentioned in passing in our brief, rushed telephone talk this morning.

http://oxtogrind.org/archive/1413 could get a discussion going respecting the supplement, but — as I underscored for Sasha — no one reads anything these days carefully enough, if at all. It’s impossible what with the way everyone is running around like chickens with their heads cut off, tending to their oh-so-important agendas, fighting their very good fight in their very tight, tiny corners of socially-conscious activity.

LIKE I UNDERSCORED IN MY PREVIOUS MISSIVES TO BOTH DR. SMITH AND SASHA, I am their biggest fan. Believing what they project in their “American Addict” — their compassion and ALL that’s related to it, including their clear, fervent desire for institutional change — no one could match my interest in wanting to serve as an asset for their purposes.

My “offer” above could be described as an unconditional gesture… except that I am requesting… it is contingent upon leisurely time being set aside initially for some discussion about what options might exist to the supplement referred to above.

The documentary you’re making, Dr. Smith and Sasha, NEEDS a supplement… as per our talk today on the phone, Sasha. I KNOW you got that point. Nevertheless, if you or anyone wants me to review what I delineated for you… it would be an honor to do so. The thing is, I don’t want to do it on the run.

The only running I want to do is in solidarity with you… respecting the “supplement” that’s necessary for you to have the impact you want to have with the general public and legislators.

Set aside the necessary heartbeats for us to have that discussion I’m asking for. Please. PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE. PLEASE.

Not at your earliest convenience. [Pause.] ASAP. For, as noted in the telephone talk this morning, we have collective deadlines, horrid momentum which must be addressed from a new angle immediately. http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=hard+rain’s+gonna+fall+leon+russel l&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=48F6B7F183EB7746B4AF48F6B7F183EB7746B4AF

And if you’re too busy or not inclined to meet with me in person right away, I’ll be understanding. But… perhaps you’ll see fit to honor my humble, respectful request above. To connect me with your colleagues, those associated with the “American Addict” cinematic effort who do have time.

To guarantee the success you seek.

P.S. (written by the teenager quoted above, especially for this post) “In terms of influence on legislators and citizens in general, even if you take Michael Moore’s films — which include three of the top five most ‘influential’ documentaries of all time — there has been relatively feeble impact as a result of documentary filmmaking. Certainly the socially-conscious issues which Moore has addressed have not brought about desirable institutional change. In fact, one could easily argue that the abominations he has been trying to address have gotten worse. Much worse. And that that dynamic will continue. One of the reasons is that what’s holding back legislators and concerned citizens is not lack of information, not a lack of scandal publicized. Rather, it’s — as my mentor repeats incessantly — the apathy, resignation, cynicism, habit and atomization which dominates the life of citizens, virtually all citizens. And more information will not deal with the hole they’re in at present. Documentaries alone will not stir up that pot, will not move citizens to the kind of legal, nonviolent action that’s needed. Something additional, something new, Sasha and Dr. Smith, is needed, whether or not you embrace the particular proposal my mentor is making. Ten million more feet of celluloid won’t cut the mustard on its own.”