An Essay On American History X Script

American History X

by KE Monahan Huntley

American History X, written by David McKenna and directed by Tony Kaye (also the cinematographer), is a highly polished presentation of an ugly subject: the rhetoric of hate. The fine acting of Edward Norton and Edward Furlong extricates the film from a cliché driven script. From a Dramatica perspective, it is a particularly good illustration of how concerns and benchmarks relate in the four throughlines.

The objective story domain is examined in psychology. Divergent thinking and manipulations, both subtle and overt, are problematic. Skinheads, under the leadership of white supremacist Cameron Alexander, control Venice Beach. The LAPD is working with Venice Beach High's charismatic and African American principal, Dr. Robert Sweeney, in conceptualizing (os concern) a way to eradicate their intolerable presence. The plan entails convincing Cameron's protégé, Derek Vinyard (protagonist and influence character), to take their side. Derek is a former pupil of Sweeney's. At one time he was open to his mentor's ideas (os benchmark-conceiving) -- that is until his revered (and racist) father dissuaded his impressionable son from following the leader.

Derek's firefighter father is killed in a drive by, leaving the teen vulnerable to the influence of Cameron-manifested when Derek deliberately and viciously wastes Crips gang members carjacking his truck. Without the eyewitness testimony of his fourteen year-old brother, Daniel, he only serves three years jail time. His release from Chino starts the objective story (ic benchmark-present).

The same day as Derek's release, Daniel, a student at Venice Beach High is in the principal's office: " . . . arguing for Hitler as a civil rights hero" in his history paper "My Mein Kamph." Outraged, Sweeney conceives (os benchmark) of a way to make Daniel think (mc solution) about his fixed mindset (mc domain), and charges Daniel to give a written account of the past three years (mc concern-memory): "I want you to analyze and interpret all the events surrounding Derek's incarceration. How these events helped shape your present perspective (mc response) concerning life in contemporary America. The impact on your life -- your family's."

The most vivid throughline is explored in the relationship story domain (physics) where the concern is understanding. Derek has returned as head of the household. He has undergone a profound change in Chino, and no longer wants himself nor Daniel to take any part in the skinhead movement. Each new piece of information Derek offers Daniel (rs benchmark-learning) of what had happened to him in jail (ic concern-past), combined with Daniel's own recollections (mc concern), creates a new consciousness (mc benchmark) in the boy. This ultimately culminates in Daniel fully appreciating the knowledge (rs problem) he and Derek had shared no longer holds true.

There is no happy ending to celebrate this realization (mc resolve-change). Daniel is fatally shot in the high school boys' room-an explosive action (story driver) separate and apart from the objective story (mc critical flaw-fate). Derek, cradling his dead brother's bloody body, however, understands all too well the pivotal role he has played in Daniel's senseless death: "Oh God, What'd I do? Oh God. Oh God."

In Daniel's voiceover the tragedy is underscored-as he posthumously reads the conclusion to his American History X paper:

DANIEL

So I guess this is where I tell you what I learned (rs benchmark). My conclusion, right? Well, my conclusion is: hate is baggage. Life's too short to be pissed off all the time. It's just not worth it. Derek says it's always good to end a paper with a quote. He says someone else has already said it best, so if you can't top it, steal from them and go out strong:

"We are not enemies but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory (mc concern) will swell when again touched, as surely they will be by the better angels of our nature (judgment-good)."

About the Author

KE Monahan Huntley is an editor and publisher based in Southern California. As one of the original contributors to Dramatica, she helped edit and analyze many of the examples. In addition, her numerous articles provided an insightful "conversational" approach to the theory. Today she can be found at Write Between the Lines or follow her on Twitter @kemhuntley.

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Derek.
Fucking pervert, Dan.
What the fuck are you thinking?
There's a black guy outside
breaking into your car.
How long's he been there?
I don't know.
What's going on?
Not right now, honey. How many?
Danny, how many?
One, I think.
Is he strapped?
Does he have a gun?
I don'tfucking know.
Wait a second.
What the fuck is going on?
Stay right here and be quiet.
Wait a second, Derek. Wait.
Stay right here.
I don't have a personal problem
with him.
Don't insult
my intelligence, Murray.
You hate this child,
and I think I know why.
Dr. Sweeney's office.
I went outwith his mother
afew times.
Thatwas three years ago.
Itwas nothing.
Nothing. Really?
That paper...
Bob, it's a travesty.
Arguingfor Hitler
as a civil rights hero.
You've got to draw the line.
Murray, you actually
did this to yourself.
You told them to do a report...
on any book that related to
the struggle for civil rights...
in plain English.
I am not disputing the fact
that the child is confused...
and harbours some sick ideas...
but I am not ready
to give up on him yet.
His brother probably
put him up to it.
I guarantee you 100%...
his brother did not
put him up to this.
Lfind that hard to believe.
I know he was a good kid...
and it's a shame what he's been
through, but that's dangerous.
Dangerous in whatway?
That goes too far.
This racist propaganda,
"Mein Kampf" psychobabble...
he learned this nonsense,
and he can unlearn it, too.
I will not give up
on this child yet.
I knew itwas you.
Danny, get in here.
I said get in here!
Get in here!
Five, four, three,two...
Shut the door!
What's it gonna be, Danny?
What's what gonna be?
This petty crap you're pulling.
I don't know.
Have a seat.
How are you doing?
Fine.
Things at home OK?
Derek got out this morning,
did he not?
Yeah, he did.
He was one of my students.
You knew that, right?
Honours English.
He was a brilliant student
like you...
but he hung out
with simple-mindedfools...
also like you.
Did you bring me in here
to talk about Derek?
What happened to him
has nothing to do with me.
Everything you do right now
has something to do with Derek.
Ifollowed directions.
I wrote an "A" Paper.
"Mein Kampf"?
I should expel you.
Go ahead. You don't
think I could handle it?
No. I think the street
would kill you.
Your rhetoric
and your propaganda...
aren't going to save you
out there.
So here's the drill.
I'm your history teacher
from now on.
We will discuss current events.
We will call this class...
American History X.
We meet once a day.
All right.
Yourfirst assignment...
is to prepare for me
a new paper due tomorrow.
Come on, Sweeney. It took me
a week to read "Mein Kampf."
What do you want me to do it on?
Your brother.
Oh, God, man.
Please tell me you're joking.
No. I'm not kidding.
I want you to analyse
and interpret all the events...
surrounding
Derek's incarceration.
How these events helped shape
your present perspective...
concerning life
in contemporary America.
The impact on your life,
yourfamily's.
Whatever you want to say, Danny.
I'll be the only one reading it.
But if it's not on my desk
tomorrow morning...
you are a ghost
at Venice Beach High.
You clear?
Yeah, I'm clear.
Telling teacher
I'm fuckin' cheatin'!
Is thatwhat's happening?
I never cheated in my life.
Beat his mo'fuckin' ass.
I didn't say anything!
Why you trippin' on me?
Now why you all kicking it
like that?
What's up, man?
What you scaredfor?
I ain't gonna do nothing.
What's up?
Want some, too, bitch?
Punk, what's wrong with you?
You want to die?
Punk-ass white boy.
You lucky I gotta go to class.
He ain't gonna do nothing.
He don'twanna see me
and the heater.
Lucky the bell rung.
I would have clocked
thatwhite boy.
Punk-ass motherfucker.
Should smoke thatfool.
You gottafucking stand up
for yourself.
We got a whole file
on skinheads here.
Part of the same gang?
Venice Beach gang.
Actually,
he's done a stretch at Y.A.
This guy C. C., is that him?
Yeah, that's him right there.
This morning we have a guest,
and there he is.
Good morning.
Morning, sir.
Good to see you.
Good morning.
This here is Dr. Bob Sweeney.
He's principal
over at Venice Beach High.
For some time now,
he's been doing outreach work...
with gangs
both in and out of the can.
Three years ago, a local kid
named Derek Vinyard...
was sent upfor murdering
a couple of Crips...
who were trying to jack his car.
Bob taught Vinyard, and
he's followed this case closely.
He was a skinhead, right?
He was more
like "the" skinhead...
the protg
of Cameron Alexander.
- Who?
- Cameron Alexander.
Here you go. Have a look-see.
Cameron Alexander, well,
he's a Venice Beach landmark.
He's the biggest distributor
and writer...
of White Power literature
and videos in L.A. County.
He promotes White Power bands,
he writes reviews...
and in his spare time, this guy
even writes hate columns.
- Does he have a record?
- He's pretty clean.
Been trying to pin something
to him, but it doesn'twork.
Trust me.
He's behind all of it.
He runs everything
out of his house by the beach.
There were no white gangs
in Venice Beach...
before Cameron Alexander
and Derek Vinyard hooked up.
Alexanderfound in Derek
his shining prince.
Essentially,
he used Derek to recruit...
a slew of insecure, frustrated,
and impressionable kids.
This kid Vinyard,
he's got a lot of baggage...
as you'll see on this tape
we've gotten courtesy of NBC.
Earliertoday, L.A. County
fire-fighter Dennis Vinyard...
was shot and killed
battling a blaze...
at a suspected Compton drug den.
We're at the Vinyard home now...
and Lieutenant Vinyard's
oldest son Derek...
has agreed to talk with us
for a moment.
Derek, if you could come
down here please for a second.
Look, I know this is tough,
but how do youfeel right now?
How do you think lfeel?
- I think it's typical.
- Typical how?
Well, this country's becoming
a haven for criminals...
so what do you expect?
Decent hard-working Americans
like my dad...
are getting rubbed out
by social parasites.
Parasites?
Blacks, browns, yellow,
whatever.
I don't understand.
You think maybe yourfather's
murderwas race-related?
Yeah, it's race-related.
Every problem in this country
is race-related.
Not just crime.
It's immigration,AIDS, welfare.
Those are problems
of the black community...
the Hispanic community,
the Asian community.
They're notwhite problems.
Aren't those really issues
that deal more with poverty?
No. They're not products
of their environments.
Minorities don't give two shits
about this country.
They come here to exploit it,
not to embrace it.
Millions of white Europeans
came here andflourished...
within a generation.
What the fuck is the matter
with these people?
They have to go around
shooting atfiremen.
What does this have to do
with the murder of yourfather?
Because my fatherwas murdered
doing his job!
Putting out afire in afucking
nigger neighbourhood...
he shouldn't
have given a shit about.
He got shot
by afucking drug dealer...
who probably still collects
a welfare cheque.
Derek Vinyard was quietly
releasedfrom Chino...
early this morning after serving
three and some odd years.
I think this is something
we gotta keep an eye on.
If something happens to him...
things could get very ugly
down by the beach.
Just keep it low.
Venice Beach
didn't always look like this.
It used to be
a great neighbourhood.
The boardwalk's always
been a dump...
butwhen my dad moved us
out here...
Venice was a nice,
quiet place to grow up.
Overthe years, though,
it's just gone to hell.
The gangs are like a plague.
They moved westfrom Inglewood
and South Central...
and basically took over.
I ain'tfoulin' you!
I ain't got time
for all this bullshit.
Fuck y'all.
You all right?
I'm all right.
Yo, is that thatfool
you was telling me about?
Yeah, that's that motherfucker.
Yeah, man, that's him.
Bitch-ass motherfucker.
That's why Derek started
the D.O.C.
He said white kids shouldn't
have to walk around scared...
in their own neighbourhood,
andfor a while there...
we really made it
like itwas ours again.
Throw the ball!
Come on, Curtis!
Quit chucking it up.
Pass the ball.
"D" up!
Come on, let's go.
Look at this
fucking jungle bunny.
He does a spin move every time.
You ain't gettin' shit,
motherfucker.
This one's for you, boy!
What the fuck you...
Who you callin' boy,
motherfucker?
You're lucky, motherfucker!
I'm through monkeying around
with yourfucking ass!
Pale, pasty, pastrami-eating,
cracker motherfucker.
A hundred bucks
say I make you my bitch.
Hearthat?
He's trying to make ends meet...
for his cut in welfare.
You're on!
It's eight-six, Seth.
When I want your opinion,
I'll ask for it.
Come on. I can't coverthis.
Help me out here.
You got a bigfucking mouth.
I can take this niglet down.
You couldn't take a shit.
What are you thinking?
I will beat him.
Give me the money.
Shut up.
You're gonna
fucking embarrass us.
I'll take care of this.
Yo, I ain't got time forthis.
Hey!
I got a bet.
I come in this game right now.
Same score...
butwe play black guys
against the white guys.
Name your price, cracker.
No money. Forthese courts.
And not just today. For good.
If you win,
we will walk away...
but if we win,
no bitching, no fighting.
Right here in front of
everybody, pack up your shit...
and get your black asses
out of here.
Fuck that. Take this bet.
Eight to six. Our ball.
Let's go.
Pick him up!
Seth,
get back and play some "D."
Defence!
Pass the fucking ball!
I was wide open!
Bullshit.
That's fuckin' offence.
Get out of here.
He moved his feet.
You want to go, I'm ready!
Don't throw elbows at me!
You want to go,Adolf Hitler
wannabe motherfucker?
- You OK?
- Yeah. Give me some water.
You gotta call offence
on that shit.
Not on game point, Danny.
You can't let those niggers
get away with that shit.
It's game point.
Shut 'em down. Kick some ass.
Watch this.
Bye-bye.
Get the fuck off my court!
This is my house!
Fuck you, bitch!
Get the fuck out of here!
This is my court!
Derek wouldn't let us visit him
in prison.
He said itwould make it
just too hardfor him...
and that if we came,
he wouldn't see us anyhow.
Three years without him,
justwondering.
And then at 7:00 this morning...
we picked him up
outside the gate.
The whole ride back,
he didn't say anything.
I wanted to stay home,
but he said...
"No. Go to school.
I'll see you later."
Oh, come on.
Give the guy a break.
What? You too big
to give me a hug, tough guy?
No, man. I just know
you're gonna need someone...
to look after you while
you adjust to all this space.
Yeah, right.
This place is smaller
than the old living room.
How you doing? How's school?
It's good.
You gotta do something
about that hair.
That do's gotta go.
- The girls like it.
- Well, I don't.
You're keeping it pretty close.
You took it all the way down.
Shit. Look. Iforgot, man.
It hurt like shit
when they put it on.
When'd you get that?
I got it about a month ago.
Cameron made it official.
He put this on you?
What?
Oh, hi. He's here.
Derek, it's for you.
Nothing.
Is there a phone in the back?
I'll get it in the back.
I got it. Yeah?
Oh, hey.
What?
My eyes have seen the glory...
of the trampling at the zoo.
We've washed ourselves
in nigger's blood...
and all the mongrels, too.
We're taking down
the Zog machine...
Jew by Jew by Jew.
The white man marches on.
You think ourfriend
was behind that?
I don't even care.
I'm gonna take care
of that tonight.
My sweet kids. My baby boy.
God, what's with
the love fest, you guys?
No. He'll do it.
I'll make sure he does it.
I'll get it.
I came to see the man.
- Can youfit through the door?
- Fuck you!
What's up, Dan? How you doing?
- Where's Derek?
- He's on the phone.
Come out, youfree motherfucker!
Where the fuck are you?
Hang on. Give me a minute.
I'll be out in a minute.
I'll be careful.
I'm not gonna stay
in my room the rest of my life.
Hold on.
Hey. What the fuck
is Seth doing here?
Did you invite him over?
No. He always comes over here.
Danny, give me a minute.
Just give me one minute.
Are you still here, Goodyear?
You calling me a blimp,
youfucking Democrat?
When was the last time you were
actually able to see yourfeet?
Come in here, Danny.
Are you going to Cam's party
tonight?
Is Davina's ass watertight?
You're fucking sick, man.
All right, relax.
Let me ask you afew questions.
I'm not in the mood.
I got homework.
Tell me some of the shit
you've learned, fuckass...
before I pistol-whip you.
OK. I believe in death,
destruction...
chaos, filth, and greed.
Cut the shit, Dan. Come on.
Tell me what I want to hear.
You mean that shit
about your mother?
You want to get
fucking beaten, Danny?
I'm notfucking talking to you.
Shut up.
Look, you gotta let me do this
my own way, all right?
I'll take care of it.
Who do you hate, Danny?
I hate anyone
that isn'twhite Protestant.
Why?
They're a burden to the
advancement of the white race.
Some are all right.
None of them
are fucking all right, OK?
They're all a bunch
of fuckingfreeloaders.
We don't know 'em.
We don'twant to know 'em.
They're the fucking enemy.
What don't you like
about them...
and say itwith
some fucking conviction.
I hate the fact it's cool
to be black these days.
I hate this hip-hop influence
on white fucking surburbia.
Good.
I hate Tabitha Soren and
her Zionist MTVfucking pigs...
telling us we should get along.
Save the rhetorical bullshit,
Hillary Rodham Clinton...
'cause it ain't gonna
fucking happen.
That's some of the best shit
I've ever heard.
Lfeel sorry for you, Danny.
You don't believe
any of that shit, right?
Shut up.
No. Get out of the house now,
you piece of shit.
Is that any way to talk
to a guest, afriend?
Derek hates you,
and you don't realize it.
How do you know who I hate?
Back from the dead.
God bless Jesus Christ.
God, I think you lostweight.
I can get my arms almost
all the way around you.
Fifty fuckin' pounds, man.
Look at this hair. Holy shit.
I told him it's gotta go.
Grab your jacket.
Let's get the fuck out of here.
I want to talk to him.
One second.
Hey, listen. Did you pull
some shit in school today?
- Just the usual.
- This kid is awesome as hell.
Did you turn in a paper
on "Mein Kampf"?
- Sweeney shit his pants.
- He did, man.
Was that your idea or
did Cameron put you up to that?
No. I thought itwould be cool.
How'd you know?
It doesn't matter how I knew.
This kid is smart as hell.
Was that Sweeney on the phone?
Sweeney called and told me.
God, I hate
thatfucking nigger, man.
He's gotta get afucking life.
Sweeney's a good teacher.
Sweeney is a nigger
on a powertrip.
That's what he was like
when we were there...
and that's how he is now.
It'll never change.
Fuck that nigger!
- Seth, go away.
- Are you kidding?
Nope. Wait in Danny's room.
I want to talk to my brother.
I've been here 15 minutes.
I'm starving.
Come here. Seriously, look.
Forget this yahoo.
He kills bugs for a living.
You don'twant to be like that.
I'm serious. It's notfunny.
Sweeney is a good teacher.
You can learn a lotfrom him.
Don't go fuck it up
with smallfry shit like that.
You don't understand.
You got to see the bullshit
paper he's making me write.
He told me all about it.
I don't care.
You do anything he tells you
to do. I mean it.
I don'twant you getting
in trouble in school...
trying to impress me,
taking this shit in there.
Do you understand
what I'm saying?
Yeah, I guess, but, I mean,
I thought you'd be happy.
Well, I'm not.
Listen to that.
Yeah, I know.
It's been getting worse.
Don'tworry about it.
I'll talk to you
about this later.
She's coughing her lungs out...
and you're blowing this
in herface all day.
I'm putting it out.
Hey, come on.
I want to talk to you.
Mommy, are you OK?
Put that out.
I was just yelling at him
for blowing smoke in yourface.
Nice thing to come home to, huh?
You all right?
You all right?
Look, you got to take it easy.
You got to get some rest.
Take Danny's and my room,
and we'll hit the couch.
I've been on the couch for ages.
The couch is fine.
No, it's notfine.
This is terrible.
We can't live like this.
We gotta get out of here.
Can I go with you?
Yeah.
We all gotta get out of here.
- I could drop out and get a job.
- Absolutely not.
You got to finish.
I'll work something out.
Derek, can we please go eat?
I'm fucking starving here.
Go wait in the living room.
I want him out of my house.
I know. Look.
He's an idiot.
He's always been an idiot.
He can't help it.
I got to do that paper.
I'll catch up with you
latertonight.
Not at Cameron's. I need you
to stay away from there.
- We were going to hang.
- I'll explain it later.
I just need you to stay away
from the party, all right?
Whatever.
Promise me you'll stay away
from that party tonight.
I'm notfucking 14 anymore,
all right?
Whatever.
God!
Come on, let's go.
Where are you parked?
Out back.
Yeah, that's the whole bunch.
It didn't take longfor Derek
to make a name for himself...
and Cameron knew
just how to use it.
You don'twant to stick around?
You know I'd love to,
but I got to be careful.
Yeah, I know.
I'll see you back at the house.
Good luck.
He sent Derek to the kids,
to the frustrated ones...
the ones who were sick
of getting their asses kicked...
by black and Mexican gangs.
"Don't just be some punk.
Be part of something."
All right, let's go.
Pull it together.
And everybody ate it up.
They did whatever Derek
told them to.
Let's go. We're not here
to fucking socialize.
Shut the fuck up.
Yeah, man.
You want a little toke?
Go ahead.
- Curtis, what is that?
- Come on, Derek.
Weed is for niggers.
Put that away right now.
Jesus fucking Christ.
Have a little self- respect.
All right, listen up.
We need to open our eyes.
There's overtwo million
illegal immigrants...
bedding down
in this state tonight.
This state spent three
billion dollars last year...
on services forthose people
who had no right to be here.
Three billion dollars.
$400 million just to lock up
illegal immigrant criminals...
who only got into this country
because the INS decided...
it's notworth the effort
to screen for convictedfelons.
Our government
doesn't give a shit.
Our border policy is a joke,
so is anybody surprised...
that south of the border
they're laughing at us?
Laughing at our laws?
Every night, thousands
of these parasites...
stream across the border like
some fucking piata exploded.
Don't laugh.
There's nothingfunny here.
This is about your life
and mine.
It's about decent,
hard-working Americans...
falling through the cracks
and getting the shaft...
because their government
cares more about the rights...
of a bunch of people
who aren't even citizens.
On the Statue of Liberty
it says...
"Give me yourtired,
your hungry, your poor."
Well, it's Americans who are
tired and hungry and poor.
Until you take care of that...
close the fucking book,
because we're losing.
We're losing our right
to pursue our destiny.
We're losing ourfreedom so
a bunch of fuckingforeigners...
can come in here
and exploit our country.
And this isn't something
that's going on far away.
This isn't happening places
we can't do anything about it.
It's happening here.
Right in our neighbourhood.
Right in that building
behind you.
Archie Miller ran that grocery
store since we were kids here.
Dave worked there.
Mike worked there.
He went under, and now
some fucking Korean owns it...
who fired these guys
and is making a killing...
because he hired
I see this shit going on...
and I don't see anybody
doing anything about it...
and itfucking pisses me off.
So look around you.
This isn't
ourfucking neighbourhood.
It's a battlefield.
We're on a battlefield tonight.
Make a decision.
Are we going to stand
on the sidelines?
Quietly standing there
while our country gets raped?
Are we going to ante up
and do something about it?
You're goddamn right.
Come here!
Don't you know it's illegal...
to hire fucking border jumpers,
you nip bastard?
Hey, sweetheart.
No. You don't need this.
We're not going to hurt you.
Please, please! No!
Youfucking spic!
- No! Please!
- This bitch deserves it.
This bitch stinks. Smells like
fish and chips and guacamole.
Here we go.
Goddamn!
Get the fuck off me,
motherfucker!
Viva la Mexico!
Have afucking bean,
youfucking beaner!
Get some of that in there.
Throw it on.
That's a great colour on you.
Now you can get
a white woman's job.
A little better
than this one, huh?
Yeah, white.
Then you'll move up
in the world.
Asshole!
Let's go!
Everybody out!
Now! Now!
All right, let's go!
Come on!
Come on, let's go.
No green card, no fucking work.
Comprende?
Come on!
We're fucking going! Come on!
Dad was gone, but things
were almost normal again.
Derek had a good job.
Mom was starting
to live a little.
Everyone was feeling so good,
we just didn't see it coming.
Maybe we should've.
The irony is
that most of the stores...
destroyed during the riots
were owned by black people.
That's stupid, though.
Why trash your neighbourhood?
Well, that's my point.
It's an irrational act.
It's like an expression
of rage...
by people who feel neglected
and turned away by the system.
It's like we had in Watts
orthe riots in Chicago in '68.
I don't buy that.
Calling a riot an irrational
expression of rage.
That's such a cop-out.
It's opportunism at its worst.
It's people grabbing
any excuse they can find...
to go and loot a store,
nothing more.
The fact that these people
ripped off the stores...
in their own communities,
all that reflects...
is that they have no respect
forthe law at all...
and certainly no concept
of community...
or civic responsibility.
Now wait a minute.
White people commit crimes
againstwhite people, too.
Yeah, but they're not offing
each other in record numbers.
Look at the statistics,
for Christ's sake.
One in every three
black males...
is in some phase
of the correctional system.
Is that a coincidence...
or do these people have
a racial commitment to crime?
Not only that.
They're proud of it.
Maybe it says something
about prejudice...
in the judicial system.
If you want to talk
about criminal statistics...
take a look at the social
inequalities that produce them.
That's exactly what I hate.
You're taking one thing
and calling it something else...
and just alleviating
the responsibility...
these people have
fortheir own actions.
It's like saying,
it's not a riot, it's rage.
It's not crime, it's poverty.
That's just nonsense.
It's exactly what happened
in this trial...
because the media
twisted things around...
so people got allfocused
on these cops...
and whether or not they were
going to get convicted...
and whether Rodney King's
civil rights had been violated.
Everybody lost sight
of old Rodney King himself.
The guy's a multiple felon
by his own admission.
He's high as a goddamn kite...
driving 120 miles an hour
down the highway.
He gets pulled over
by a bunch of cops...
and he attacks them.
He attacked police officers.
That's the bottom line,
and he walked.
And there's some yahoo there
with a video camera...
who turned it on
halfway through...
so that all we see
is them hitting him.
You got Powell and Koon
cracking him with billy clubs...
and Briseno's kicking him
in the back of the skull...
so it looks severe, you know?
People are going,
"Oh, this poor guy."
This poor guy
who attackedfour cops...
and those cops
end up on the stand...
defending themselves for using
standard textbook procedures.
I don't think the tapes
showed that at all.
You didn't think so?
And you're an authority?
Murray, what do you think?
I did think the police used
their clubs rather excessively.
Who are you
to say what's excessive?
I think itwas
totally appropriate.
They're in a better position
to make that call than you are.
We, as society, grant cops
a certain amount of authority...
to make those calls,
because we acknowledge...
that their job is difficult
and dangerous.
Very few people respect that
and respect that authority.
Look who's talking about
respect... Mr. Junior KKK.
What?
You want to go to college?
Learn to listen.
I didn't say I respect the laws.
I acknowledge a cop's authority.
I don't respect laws that let
Rodney King back on the street.
Second, I am not a member
of a low-rent...
disorganized bunch of rednecks
like the fucking KKK. Please.
So take your head
out of your ass.
You've gotten off the point.
I had a point.
Thatwasn't even the point.
Do you have one?
What is your point?
All right, think about this.
If Danny was walking
across the street that night...
and Rodney King
plowed into him...
Can we drop
this Rodney King thing?
Who would like some dessert?
We're having a discussion.
We're having
a nice discussion, right?
If Rodney King
had been driving along...
hopped up on PCP
and had killed Danny...
you'd be singing
a different tune...
I didn't see him hit anybody,
and neither did you.
He didn't happen
to kill anybody, thank God.
Keep it down, OK?
Ally's sleeping.
If thatfucking monkey
had run some kid over...
everybody would have
a very different opinion.
They'd be focused on Rodney King
and not on these officers.
But instead,
he just attacked afew cops...
so, suddenly,
it's Hands Across America...
forthis fucking total
son of a bitch.
It blows my mind.
We're so hung up on this notion
thatwe have some obligation...
to help
this struggling black man.
Cut him some slack
until he can overcome...
these historical injustices.
It's crap. This stuff
just perpetuates it...
all this liberal nonsense.
Everyone's looking
the otherway...
while our country rots
from the inside out.
I mean, Christ, Lincoln freed
the slaves 130 years ago.
How long does it take
to get your act together?
Jews have been persecuted
for over 5,000 years.
Are you saying it's wrong
to feel sensitive...
about anti-Semitism?
Oh, forget that.
I'm with you. I'm with you
all the way, baby.
I'm so sick of
these liberal hypocrites.
Here we go again.
I love this part.
This is great.
Look how they scapegoated
Chief Gates.
Think they would've come down
that hard on Willie Williams?
No way. That videotape was
a set-up to get rid of Gates.
- Can I be excused?
- No. Don't interrupt.
Excuse me. I was talking.
I listened to you.
- Who do you think you are?
- She's making a point.
Davina, sit down.
Be quiet! Shut up! Sit down!
- Derek, calm down.
- Don't tell him to shut up!
Sit your ass down. No.
Sit down. Shut your mouth.
Move! Goddamn it! Move!
Shut your mouth and give
my girlfriend respect.
Derek, what are you
trying to prove?
Murray, stay out of it!
Where do you think you're going?
Derek, let her go!
You need to learn
some fucking manners, Davina!
Shut yourfucking mouth!
Stop!
She can't breathe!
Let her go!
You going to apologize?
You're afucking asshole.
I hate you!
What are you doing?
This is yourfamily.
Right.
My family, so you know what?
I don't give two shits about you
orwhat you think.
You're not a part of it.
- That has nothing to do with it.
- It doesn't?
You don't think
I see what you're doing?
You think
I'll sit here and smile...
while some fucking kike
tries to fuck my mother?
It's never going to happen.
Fuckingforget it.
Notwhile I'm in this family.
I willfucking cut
your Shylock nose off...
and stick it up your ass
before I let that happen.
Coming in here and poisoning
my family's dinner...
with yourJewish,
nigger-loving, hippie bullshit.
Fuck you. Fuck you.
Yeah, walk out.
Asshole. Fucking
cabala-reading motherfucker.
Get out of my house.
You see this?
That means notwelcome.
What did I do?
You disgust me.
Bring him to ourtable, primping
your hair and your dress.
What did I do?
You're all tarted up.
How could you bring him
to my father's table?
How could you go from Dad
to that? Aren't you ashamed?
I'm ashamed that you
came out of my body!
Go run to yourfucking kike!
Run to him!
It's OK.
I'm proud of you, baby.
I'm so sorry, Doris.
I really am.
He's gone.
He's just a boy
without afather.
Doris, you don't know the world
your children are living in.
Good-bye.
Hey, you all right?
- Take this, youfucking dick!
- No. Come here.
- Fuck you!
- Calm down.
- Let go of me!
- Calm down.
Let me go, God damn it!
- Fuck you!
- I'm sorry.
I would never hurt you.
You know that.
I screwed up. I lost control.
It's not you.
I'm sorry.
I'd never hurt you guys.
You know that.
I'd do anythingfor you.
I don't believe you.
I trust you, Derek.
What are you doing out of bed?
Want a plane ride?
- Yeah.
- Goingfortakeoff.
Oh, no, don't crash.
Better go to Mom.
She's a crazy flier.
Kiss Mom. Oh, yeah.
- You don'tfeel too hot.
- No. It's my chest.
- What are you up to?
- I'm just thinking.
Yeah? There's a lot of that
going around.
I don't even know
how we got here sometimes.
Lfeel like I let you down, only
I didn't know when it happened.
Mom, it's OK.
It's cold in here.
No wonder you're sick.
You don't get sick from cold.
You get sick from germs.
No. You get sick from smoking.
You ought to quit.
It's not goodfor you.
What are you looking at me
like thatfor?
When are you going to let
that beautiful hair grow back?
The day you quit smoking.
Deal.
I'd better get Ally to bed.
You say good night to Mom?
Then you have to go to bed.
Come on.
- Good night, Mama.
- Good night, baby.
I go back to that night
again and again in my mind.
I try to stop itfrom happening.
I want you out of this house.
That's fine.
I'll be gone in the morning.
He can move in with me.
In my mind, I imagine
whatwould've happened...
if I hadn't gone to that room
and told him.
Get down!
No, Derek!
Help, Mommy!
Nigger, you justfucked
with the wrong bull. Come here!
Damn!
Should've learned your place on
the fucking basketball court...
but youfucking monkeys
never get the message!
My father gave me that truck,
you motherfucker!
You ever shoot atfiremen?
You shoot at my family?
I'm going to teach you a real
lesson now, motherfucker.
Put yourfucking mouth
on the kerb.
Hold on, man.
Put it on the kerb right now!
That's it.
Derek, no!
Now say good night.
Fucker.
Drop yourweapon!
Put yourweapon on the ground!
Put your hands up!
I said get your hands up!
Now turn around!
Put your hands behind your head!
Get down on your knees
right now!
It's all right.
Let's go.
- Come on.
- No.
She ain't gonna open the door?
Someone rightfucking there
looking at us. Hello?
Danny, it's for you.
Be right there.
Open the door, Danny.
It's fuckingfreezing!
Danny, I'm gonna be sick!
Come on, Danny!
I'm gonna go get some beers.
Hey, what a party, fatso?
I'm notfat, asshole!
I'm husky!
What the fuck's up, Seth?
Drink up, Danny,
before your brother sees you.
Holy fuck, he's here!
Yeah, he's fucking here.
Go pay your respects.
Fuck you, Seth!
Let's go talk to Cameron, Danny.
- Father Vinyard?
- How's it going?
I'm Jason, this is Chris.
We're friends with your brother.
You are afucking god, man!
I thought you turned
that paper in.
I did. Now fucking Murray
turned me in...
so Sweeney's making me
write another one.
Good old Sweeney.
He never stops trying.
He's one of those
"proud to be nigger" people.
I hate those guys.
Wait a minute, Danny.
He's not proud.
No. He's a manipulative,
self- righteous Uncle Tom.
He's making youfeel guilty
aboutwriting on Adolf Hitler.
Some nigger, some spic writes
about Martin Luther King...
orfucking Cesar commie Chavez
gets a pat on the head.
Yeah.
You can see the hypocrisy
in that, can't you?
Definitely.
Come on, let's go.
No. Listen. Wait.
I want to see you, OK?
I do, but I gotta
take care of something tonight.
- OK.
- You understand?
Yeah. I'm here.
When you're ready, I'm here.
- Would you do something with me?
- Anything.
Leave with me.
Leave where?
Leave here. Leave all this.
Just come with me.
Why would you want to leave?
They worship you.
You're like a god to them.
If we had it good before, wait
till you see what it's like now.
I don'twant all that.
I don'twant my family involved.
Everything I've done here
fucked it all up, understand?
You think what you did
was wrong?
Oh, baby. Oh, come on.
Those niggers got exactly
what they deserved...
and we all know that.
I understand you just got out,
but no one's gonna hurt you.
No one can touch you.
There's a small army out there.
We're not gonna let
a bunch of spooks kick us out.
You're not listening to me.
I'm not scared.
I don'twant it anymore.
I'm done with it.
I'm through with this.
It's bullshit, Stacey.
You don't need this, Stacey.
Come on, trust me.
If you want to be with me,
just trust me. Come with me.
Come on.
You're nuts. You are nuts.
No way.
I don't think you realize
what's been going on here.
We are 10 times whatwe were,
and we are bloody organized.
It is like nothing
you have ever seen.
This was a mistake. Forget it.
Wait a second.
Whatwas a mistake?
Stacey,just say good-bye.
This isn't you. I know you.
You don't know anything
about me, Stacey.
- Are you Danny's brother?
- Yeah.
Will you tell him
Lizzy's lookingfor him?
Thank you.
We'll let the niggers, kikes,
and spics grab forthe pie.
Can't blame 'em.
Course, they're gonna
have to fight to get it.
And if we scare
the fuck out of people...
and afew people get killed
in the process, so be it.
Gonna put that
in your paper, Danny?
Hey, man.
Well, look who's here.
The return of the soldier.
What are you doing here, Danny?
Come on, man.
I had to check it out.
You knew I was gonna come.
Let the kid alone, Derek.
He knows when to go to bed.
Go wait outside.
Come on, Der.
I'm not doing anything.
This little blonde girl
keeps askingfor you.
She's dying. Come on.
- I gotta check out.
- Go easy on her.
All right.
Waitfor me right outside.
Take it easy.
Chill out.
You're on safe ground.
You don't have to watch
your ass around here.
Come on. Sit down. Relax.
I'm sorry.
The party was a little quick...
butwe're just so damn glad
you're back, Derek.
It's only natural
you shouldfeel a little funny.
I don'tfeelfunny, Cam.
You made the fat kid
a little nervous.
He thinks the joint
messed with your mind.
It did.
Glory, glory, hallelujah...
Glory, glory, hallelujah...
The white man marches on!
Things have changed
since you've been gone.
You talk about organization?
Wait'll you see what
we've done with the internet.
We've got every gang
from Seattle to San Diego...
working together now.
Not competing anymore.
They're consolidated.
Only thing we lack is
a little overall leadership.
That's where you come in.
Those people out there got
a lot of respectfor you.
When you're ready,
come talk to me about it.
You can forget about that.
I'm done with it, Cam.
Yeah, well,
I know you grew out of...
that shaved head bullshit
a long time ago, thank God.
I like your hair
the way it is now.
See, that's what I mean.
We're thinking bigger now.
No more of this fucking
grocery store...
You're not listening to me.
I am done with it.
All that bullshit out there
and all your bullshit, too.
I'm out.
I understand how youfeel.
You've just done hard time.
Don't youfucking talk to me
about hard time.
- You don't know anything.
- I've done mine.
You didn't do shit.
Ifound out about you.
You did two months,
then rolled over on two kids...
and let them go down for you.
So don'tfeed me
yourfucking lies, Cameron.
All right. This is stupid.
I'm done.
You go cool off.
Get laid. Do something.
Get your head on straight,
and then I'll talk to you.
But it doesn't matter
if I don't, does it?
'Cause you got the next crop...
lined up and ready to go,
youfucking chicken hawk.
Excuse me?
You prey on people, Cam!
You use them!
I lost three years of my life
for yourfucking phoney cause...
but I am on to you now,
youfucking snake.
Derek, watch it. Be careful.
Rememberwhere you are.
This isn't some fucking country
club you can waltz in and out...
Shut up! Shut the fuck up!
I came here to tell you
one thing. I am out.
Out! And Danny is out, too!
If you come near my family,
I'llfucking kill you.
Excuse me, butfuck you, Derek.
You can't come
barking threats at me.
You can do whatever you want,
but Danny is a good kid.
He's not some whiny pussy
like you.
He needs my help,
and I'm gonna give it to him.
If you come near Danny again...
I willfeed you
yourfucking heart, Cameron.
I won't have to.
He'll come to me.
I'm more important to him now
than you'll ever be.
Shit.
You're afucking dead man,
Vinyard.
Hey, where's Cameron?
Where the fuck is he?
Stay away from me, Stacey.
Danny!
Why don't you share
with the rest of us...
what you just said to me,
you piece of shit nigger!
You monkey-fucking traitor!
You afucking nigger-fucker?
Hey, Danny! Come on!
He's afucking nigger!
Nigger! Nigger!
Cam's out cold!
Where the fuck are you going?
Gun! He's got a gun!
Shit! Back up!
You make me fucking sick!
Put down the fucking gun!
Shoot the nigger!
Shoot him!
Do it, Seth! Shoot him!
Traitor!
Do it, Seth! Do it!
Back up! Move!
Back up! Back the fuck up!
Move! Move!
Easy, Derek! Hey!
Easy, Danny!
Who do you think you are?
- Danny, relax.
- Who do you think you are?
Take it easy, Dan.
Lfucking hate you, Der!
All right. I mean it.
Huh?
Come on. Shut up.
Take it easy.
What's happened to you, Der?
Take it easy.
What's happened to you, Der?
Come on. Come on.
It's just so fucked.
I'm sorry. You weren't
supposed to see that.
I told you not to come.
Fuck you, man.
Thatwas so fucked up.
I know, I know.
God, itwasn't supposed
to happen thatway.
Thatwas fucked up.
That's all there is to it.
That's notwhat I planned.
It just all went to shit.
Just shit.
Got totally out of control.
What's fucking happening here?
Hey, look at me.
I can't go back to that, Dan.
Can't go back to what?
To any of it.
Those guys, the gang, that life.
I'm done with it.
What happened to you up there?
Feed line. Back upfor chow.
Don't be late,
you piece of shit!
Let's go if you want to eat!
Get up! Five minutes!
This is my fucking house!
Get up!
What the fuck's your problem,
you assholes?
Move! Let's go!
Open the fucking gates!
All right, rack 'em!
Five minutes! Stepforward!
Those beds better be made.
Aftertwo days, I didn't think
I'd make it a week.
Come on, you motherfuckers!
You want to eat today,
youfucking piece of shit?
Hey, you white trash
piece of shit!
You think you're
fucking special, whitefish?
Button that top button!
Let's go! Move!
Are you eyeballing me?
Don't eyeball-fuck me, asshole!
I'llfucking kill you!
I'm gonna keep my eye on you,
you white piece of shit!
Don'tfucking eyeball me, boy!
I'llfucking skull-fuck you!
Stepforward!
Turn to the left.
Stepforward to chow! Let's go!
Come on!
Hey, fish, straight ahead.
Straight ahead, fucker!
Let's go!
All the wrong people
knew who I was anyway...
so lfigured I'd put up aflag
and hope afriend sees it.
That's the cat I'm talking
about right there.
Boss.
Have a seat.
It's a pleasure.
Don'tfuck with me, all right?
'Cause I'm the most dangerous
man in this prison.
You know why?
'Cause I control the underwear.
We pick 'em up over here,
and we store 'em overthere.
And I hope you work out,
all right?
'Cause the last guy they sent me
didn'twear no drawers...
couldn't read
the sizes in the drawers...
and used to sniff
the drawers, all right?
We got two sizes... medium
and large, all right?
All you gotta do is put
the mediums with the mediums...
and the larges with
the larges, all right?
I know it's a boring job...
but it's betterthan that
last shit they had me doing.
I spent two years in the kitchen
scrubbing hot-ass pots and pans.
That you don'twanna do,
all right?
You should be happy as shit
you landed this job.
There's no telling what they'd
have you do up in the joint.
By the way...
what you in for?
Probably robbed
some old lady, huh?
OK, I know your kind, right?
Bad-ass peckerwood
with an attitude.
Let me tell you something, man,
you betterwatch your ass...
'cause in the joint,
you the nigger, not me.
I was a year in.
I thought I was cruising.
Then everything started
getting complicated.
What the fuck is that?
What's that all about?
That's just politics, man.
Favours, you know?
He's doingfavours
forthatfucking spic?
Mitch has just got
a little something extra...
on the side
with them boys, you know?
You're kidding, right?
No.
That's bullshit, man.
Somebody should say something
to him.
What the fuck is he thinking?
Mitch is the only reason
you're not a corpse right now.
You know what?
I don'tfucking give a shit.
I can take care of myself.
He shouldn't be doing that.
I'm getting sick of it, man.
There's a lot of hard talk here
and no follow-through.
I think you better chill out
on the preaching bullshit.
We're getting a little tired
of that shit around here.
Ease up on it.
What are you doing here, Doris?
I was in the neighbourhood.
Look, I told you I don'twant
you all coming up here.
I don't care
what you told me, OK?
I need to talk to you now.
So, how is everyone?
Davina's great. She's getting
straight As almost.
And Ally's walking,
starting to talk a little.
How's Danny?
He holds you up so high.
He thinks you're the greatest.
He's always bragging
about you to Cameron...
and all his new friends.
He's starting
to remind me of you.
Jesus, don't sound
so worried, all right?
I'm sure he's fine.
He's 16 years old, Doris.
He's not gonna be
a little angelforever.
You think because
I watched my firstborn...
fuck up his entire life
that I can sit here...
and see my baby follow
him down the same toilet?
I can'tfix all this shit
from up here.
I'm not asking you to.
All it does is make me feel bad.
You're just making it harder.
You think you're the only one
doing time, Derek?
You think
you're here all alone?
You think I'm not in here
with you?
Fuck, man.
Every day I watch you
go through these sheets...
like you gonna get
to the end of them.
Look, nigger,
will you chill the fuck out?
Goddamn!
No matter how fast
you get through them...
they gonna keep bringing them in
and bringing them in.
Throwing them around
like that...
ain't gonna do a damn thing
but give you a heart attack!
And you know what?
That's cool with me!
But you gonna give me
a goddamn heart attack, too!
I know, I'm just a dumb,
stupid nigger, right?
What do I know?
I know I ain't the one getting
mad at them sheets, though.
As a matter of fact,
the only sheets I get mad at...
I'll tell you.
All right, boy,
this is whatwe gonna do.
We gonna hate some niggers.
That's whatwe'll do today.
We gonna hate
some goddamn niggers.
That's all we gonna do is
hate some niggers all day.
Don't know what a nigger is,
butwe gonna hate them.
My cousin Derek
is in the pen right now...
workin' next to a nigger,
driving him nigger crazy.
See? That's the ticket.
Nice and easy.
Now we can ignore
each other in peace.
"What are you doing?"
You know what he tells me?
"It's betterthan the pig
I just tried to fuck."
He never lets me
finish the joke.
Youfuck him, too?
Whatever. She's laying on
her back, her legs are open...
What's up? How you doing?
There you go.
He was taking it
from the Mexicans...
and dealing it out
to his own people.
He didn't believe in shit.
None of them did.
What? Come on, man.
Don't look at me like that.
You know what that smells like.
Don't tell me this smell
don't remind you of a woman.
God, I miss that smell, man.
The job I had on the outside
wasn't much betterthan this...
but at least I got
to go home every night...
and lie down next to
that sweet smell, man.
God, I miss that.
You got a woman?
Yeah, you got a woman, man.
Let me give you some advice,
all right?
When she comes to visit you...
whatever you do,
no matterwhat...
don't let her leave here
in afight, man.
Don't let herwalk out
with a bad attitude...
'cause if you do,
you spend the nextweek...
wondering if she's getting her
fuck on with somebody else...
you know what I'm saying?
So when she come to see you,
it's nothing but sweet talk.
Send her away floating,
all right?
'Cause it's not like the real
world where you can fight...
'cause you can make up
and have that make-up sex.
Know what I'm saying?
That angry sex.
That sex with an attitude.
You lay on your back and let her
take out that aggression on you.
All guys know that, man.
That's that good sex.
That's that pow, pow, pow.
Let her get on top,
and she'll punish youfirst.
"You been a bad boy, huh?
"You been a bad boy,
and I'm gonna punish you.
"I'm gonna put it on you.
"Don't you ever...
let... me... catch... you...
"looking at... another... woman.
Yeah, yeah.
"I may forgive you
if you bring it.
"I think I can. L... lforgive.
"lforgive. Right there.
You're hitting it.
"My spot. That's it. Right.
"Yes. Ifor... lforgive you.
Iforgive you.
"lfor... lfor...
Ifor... lforgive you!
"I love you!"
How do youfigure the Lakers
to ever be a bigger dynasty...
than the Celtics?
The Lakers
are aflare-up, afluke.
Are you crazy?
One good coach forfour years.
The Celtics are a dynasty!
Come on, man.
The Celtics, right?
The ugliest team in
the history of sports.
A dynasty of
ugly motherfuckers, man.
Look at Kevin McHale.
James Worthy. That guy
has a head like a melon.
He had ladies.
I can't even talk to you.
I don't know what you're saying.
You are tweaking.
Boston Celtics.
- How many is that?
- That's enough.
Enough? All right.
You got that?
- I lost count, man.
- Doesn't matter, man.
Who's counting anyway?
All right,
so I wanna know something.
What the fuck
landed you in here?
You didn't kill anybody,
too skinny for a gangbanger.
Ain't that a bitch?
Don't judge a book by its cover.
I can throw these things.
Whatever. Come on.
What did you do?
None of your business.
It's embarrassing.
It's none of
your goddamn business.
Come on. Everybody in here
is embarrassed.
Nobody in here
got away with anything.
What'd you do?
Look, man, I stole a TV,
all right?
So you stole a TV.
What's embarrassing about that?
I stole a TVfrom a store
next to a doughnut shop.
I ran out, the owner's
right behind me yelling.
Bam! I run into three cops.
I told you itwas embarrassing.
You're laughing.
Wait a sec, wait a sec.
That don't make sense.
Nah, you didn't get six years
for stealing a TV. Come on.
I come out, the police officer
grabs my arm...
the TVfalls on his foot
and breaks it.
They said I threw the TV at him.
Assault. Six years.
Come on. Tell the truth.
You chucked it at him.
Like I said,
I came out of the store...
he grabbed my arm,
itfell on his foot.
Come on now.
What you gotfor me, huh?
There you go, baby!
Yeah!
That's what I'm talking about.
Fuck you!
Give me a towel. Hold him.
You wanna be a nigger,
sweet boy?
- Fuck you!
- We gonna treat you like one.
- No.
- Come on.
Come on, give it to him!
Fuck you!
Thatwas real sweet.
Fuck you!
How is he?
Well, he took six stitches.
Man, what the hell are you
doing here, anyway?
I came to talk about Danny, but
we don't have to do that now.
I brought you some books.
What about him, you know?
Don't keep me in suspense.
He's headed rightwhere you are.
You know what? My mother
already laid this trip on me.
Danny's not my responsibility.
What do you expect me
to do with that?
It doesn't help me.
Am I supposed to feel guilty?
I don'twant you to do anything.
I need to know the truth
about how youfeel.
You think I want him in here?
I mean... I don't know.
I don't know what lfeel.
I'm all...
lfeel a little inside out.
I'm, you know... I don't know.
There's some things
that... that don'tfit.
Well, that happens.
You are too damn smart
to be floating around here...
pretending you don't see
all the holes in this bullshit.
Hey, listen.
I said I was confused.
I didn't say
I didn't believe in it.
All right. That's why
you have to stay open.
Right now, your anger
is consuming you here.
Your anger is shutting down
the brain God gave you.
God. You know, man?
You've been talking about...
what's going on with me
since I was in high school.
How the fuck do you know
what's going on inside me?
No, I know about me.
I know about this place.
I know about the place
you are in.
What do you know
about the place I'm in?
There was a moment...
when I used to blame
everything and everyone...
for all
the pain and suffering...
and vile things
that happened to me...
that I saw happen to my people.
Used to blame everybody.
Blamed white people,
blamed society, blamed God.
I didn't get no answers 'cause
I asked the wrong questions.
You have to ask
the right question.
Like what?
Has anything you've done
made your life better?
You gotta help me, man.
Just help me.
Get me out of here, you know?
I'm up in four months
for review.
Put in a wordfor me.
I already have. So you're
out there, and then what?
I don'twant to fuck up
my family anymore.
I'll go as far away
as I can get.
That's not good enough.
You want my help,
you gotta do betterthan that.
My help is not unconditional.
Running just ain't good enough.
Fuck him. Fuck him.
Fuck him.
Let the niggers have him.
What's up, D?
What's all that bullshit
you pulled in the mess hall?
You out of yourfuckin' mind?
Are youfuckin' crazy?
D, look at me, man!
You can't make it in here
on your own.
I'm not afraid of
those fuckin' pussies.
There was six of them,
and they jumped me.
Thatwon't happen again.
I hope they fuckin' try.
Man, I'm not talking
about your peckerwoodfriends!
They're protecting
your stupid ass!
You dissed them in public!
Now you're on yourfuckin' own!
Yo, man, I'm talking about
the brothers, all right?
They'llfuck you, then
smoke your motherfucking ass!
Why don't you tell me
something I don't know?
You think I haven't
thought about that?
If they come for me, they come.
There ain't nothing I can do.
What can I do, man?
So I was right back
where I started.
Every day
I was sure itwas my day.
Every time
I stepped out of my cell...
every time
I got in that shower...
lfigured itwas
only a matter of time...
before they made a move.
I just hoped it'd be quick.
But it never came.
I couldn'tfigure it out.
I knew some of them
were itchingfor it.
After awhile,
I just put my head down...
and read the stuff
that Sweeney sent me...
and I kept to myself.
Last six months in that place,
I was like a ghost.
What's up, man?
You getting out?
Come on, man.
What the fuck you waiting on?
Get the fuck on outta here, man.
Yeah, you know,
I got this funny feeling.
Oh, yeah? What's that?
I'm thinking maybe
the only reason...
I'm getting out of here
in one piece is you.
Come on, man!
Get the fuck outta here!
You think I'm gonna
put my neck on the line...
for some crazy ass peckerwood?
Yeah. Right.
Stupid.
That's what I thought.
I owe you, man.
Man, you don't owe me shit,
all right?
Yes, I do.
You'll be outta here in no time.
Man,
it's a piece of cake, all right?
Just take it easy
on the brothers, all right?
The brothers!
God, man.
Sorry, Derek.
Sorry that happened to you.
Well, I'm not. I'm lucky.
Lfeel lucky,
'cause it's wrong, Dan.
It's wrong,
and itwas eating me up.
Itwas gonna kill me.
And I kept asking myself
all the time...
how did I buy into this shit,
you know?
It's just 'cause
I was pissed off.
Nothing I ever did
evertook thatfeeling away.
I killed two guys, Danny.
I killed them.
And it didn't make me
feel any different.
Just got me more lost...
and I'm tired of feeling
pissed-off, Danny.
I'm just tired of it.
And I'm not telling you
what to do.
I'm really not.
But I need you to understand...
'cause I love you,
and you're my bestfriend.
Do you understand?
Yeah, I understand.
All right.
Jesus.
Hi. Everything OK?
Ah, everything's great.
Great. Yeah.
You wanna sleep in our room?
- No. Thank you.
- You sure?
Yeah. This is good.
Thank you.
All right. Come on, let's go.
Good night.
I'm gonna take a shower,
all right?
It's hard to look back...
and see the truth
about people you love.
I think if you asked Derek why
it all went the way it did...
and where it all started...
he'd still say it started
when ourfatherwas murdered.
The truth is,
it started earlier.
Are we all meeting
forthe game tonight?
Definitely.
All right,
Ben's Burger at 7:00...
then we go watch
the big guy play.
Psyching upforthe game?
I'm always ready forthat.
I got an English exam.
I'm having a heart attack.
I'm not ready.
What's the matter?
Afraid you'll get a "B"?
Might do you good. B-minus.
Hey, don't laugh.
This guy is different.
Dr. Sweeney.
This guy's unbelievable.
Unbelievable. I've never
had a teacher like this.
He's got two Ph.D.s.
I don't know what he's doing
teaching at our school.
What's he got you reading?
We got this essay exam
on "Native Son."
"Native Son"?
I don't know that.
That's a big surprise.
What? I read.
Honey, they don't teach
Tom Clancy in school.
Well, they don't.
So what is this "Native Son"?
It's this book
about this black guy.
We're doing this whole
black literature unit.
Is it Black History Month?
No, it's just
this guy Sweeney, you know?
It's part of the course now.
What?
Nothing. It's just...
It's everywhere I look now.
What?
This affirmative blacktion.
Afew new books doesn't qualify
as affirmative black action.
Read the book,
ace the guy's test.
Just don't swallow
everything he feeds you whole.
Just 'cause you see it
on the evening news...
I know, butwhat?
All this stuff about
making everything equal.
It's not that simple.
Now you got this book
"Native Son."
What happened to
the other books in the course?
They're not any good anymore
because Mr. Two Ph.D. Says so?
Now you gotta trade in
great books for black books?
Does that make sense?
You gotta question
these things, Derek.
You gotta look
at the whole picture.
We're talking about books here.
I'm also talking about my job.
I got two black guys
on my squad now...
who got their job
over a couple of white guys...
who actually scored higher
on the test.
Does that make sense?
Everything's equal now, but I
got two guys watching my back...
responsible for my life
who aren't as good.
They only got the job
because they were black...
not because they were the best.
- That sucks.
- Is thatwhat America's about?
No,America's about
best man forthe job.
You do your best,
you get the job.
This affirmative-action crap...
I don't know what that's about.
There's like some hidden agenda
or something going on.
You see what I'm saying?
Yeah, I do. I didn't
think about it like that.
This guy, though... I don't know.
Dr. Sweeney,
he comes on so strong...
it's hard
not to listen to him...
but maybe some of
what he says is kinda...
It's bullshit.
Yeah. Yeah, maybe.
No. It's nigger bullshit.
- You see that, don't you?
- Yeah.
You gotta watch outforthat.
Yeah. No, I getwhat
you're saying. I will.
Good boy.
I'm proud of you.
Don'tworry about it. I got it.
And in about one minute...
I'm gonna watch the sun come up.
I don't know
if I've ever done that.
Anyway, we're gonna try to pick
things up and start over.
Itwon't be easy,
butwe're all together again...
and lfeel good.
I'm not sure if this paper
is what you wanted...
if I hit
the social significance...
orwhatever
you're lookingfor...
butforwhat it's worth,
thanks a lot.
Wow. You look great.
Look at you.
Yeah. Gotta dress up
forthe parole officer.
Is she cute?
She is afat guy named Hector...
- Oh. Well...
- So I'm out of luck.
I just gotta check in...
then I'm gonna see about
getting my old job back.
- Great.
- Good morning.
Davina, can you help?
Your sister's gonna help you.
You look great. Knock 'em dead.
Thanks.
Come on, sweetie. Whatwould
you like to weartoday?
- You do look good.
- Yeah? Lfeel silly.
- You look good.
- Yeah?
Youfeel good?
Yeah. Lfeel, you know...
a little...
I'm getting there.
Listen... I don't know...
I don't know
if it's OK that I'm here.
I want to be here.
- I'm gonna get a paper.
- Cool.
- What do you want?
- Maple bar and a large milk.
All right. I got it.
Let me get a coffee...
a maple bar,
and a large milk to go.
Right away.
Derek, we need to talk.
What's going on?
Cameron Alexander and Seth Ryan
are at the ICU at St. John's.
They were jumped last night
near Ben's Burgers.
How bad?
Well, it looks
like they're gonna live.
- Then they got lucky.
- Somebody's gotta lose, though.
What?
We were kinda hoping maybe
you'd talk to your old crew...
Come on. No way.
If there's anybody they're
gonna listen to, it's you.
No. I hate to tell you,
but I'm out, OK?
Those guys are probably
gunningfor me now.
We're asking
for your help here, Derek.
Did you tell him
I was gonna do this?
This has got nothing
to do with me anymore.
Yes, it does. It has
everything to do with you.
God, what are you doing to me?
I'm doing my best!
I'm going like this just to keep
my family in the clear.
Don't ask me to fix
this fuckin' situation!
- I'm not asking that.
- Itwas there before me.
You helped create it.
You wanna take a break now?
You take a break,
you'llfind no peace.
The way to find peace
is to stick.
It's not gonna make
afuckin' bit of difference.
- It might.
- Not a bit.
I mean, do you know
what you're asking me to do?
Yes. I'm asking you to do
whatever's in your powerto do.
Oh, man.
Fuck.
All right.
You know what you're gonna do?
Get me shot by white boys.
I doubt it.
We're all gonna have a laugh
at that, let me tell ya.
I'm gonna take him to school.
I'll be back in half an hour.
Come on.
Hey, you. You got something
goodfor me this morning?
I'll give it to you,
Dr. Sweeney.
- Yeah, OK.
- All right.
What's goin' on?
Come on, let's go.
It's just so badfor Seth, man.
I wonder how bad
they gotfucked up.
I'm glad they're not dead.
Otherthan that, I don't care.
Should we visit them?
No. Definitely not.
Just stay out of it.
Listen. I saw a car cruising
by the house last night...
when I pulled
out of there with Seth.
If you get home before me today,
give a look around the street.
Make sure
there's nothing going on.
Man, this is bad.
- They're after you, man.
- It'll cool off.
If I made it through Chino,
this should be a piece of cake.
You gonna be OK?
What are you gonna do?
I'll work it out.
Keep your head up, all right?
Things are gonna be fine.
It's gonna be fine.
Go turn that paper in.
All right. See ya.
Come here.
I'll see you at home.
All right?
Yeah, I'll see you.
Good luck, all right?
- Yeah.
- See you later.
- Gonna be late.
- We better go.
All right. Come on.
Bye.
I'll catch up with you.
See you later.
Get out of my way!
All right! Let him go!
Oh, no.
Aw,Jesus.
Oh,Jesus.
God, what did I do?
So I guess this is where
I tell you what I learned.
My conclusion, right?
Well, my conclusion is
hate is baggage.
Life's too short
to be pissed off all the time.
It's just notworth it.
Derek says it's always good
to end a paperwith a quote.
He says someone else
has already said it best...
so if you can't top it...
stealfrom them
and go out strong.
So I picked a guy
I thought you'd like.
"We are not enemies,
butfriends.
"We must not be enemies.
"Though passion
may have strained...
"we must not break
our bonds of affection.
"The mystic chords of memory...
"will swell
when again touched...
"as surely they will be...
"by the better angels
of our nature."


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