• Brittanie G.

Tackling the Racial Divide in St. Louis

St. Louis blogger and producer Cami Thomas has just released her first original documentary series titled “Smoke City”. The series tackles St. Louis’ infamous racial divide by challenging St. Louis residents to take a tour of the city with a fresh perspective. In five episodes, viewers are shown Walnut Park, Ballwin, Florissant, and South City. Each episode is less than ten minutes, and includes cinematic drone shots, whimsical color schemes, and music compositions that make the episodes seem less like a trip down highway 40, and more like more of a journey through Alice’s Wonderland.

While there’s data and studies that outline how to tackle the racial divide in St. Louis, Smoke City shows that a big part of the problem is that residents don’t know or trust people who live in different areas of the city, based on stereotypes. Therefore, when important conversations need to happen, residents block each other out. So the first step, is for St. Louisans to start over with introductions and treat each other likes the neighbors we really are. Smoke City puts a face to the areas that are riddled with the most stereotypes and opens the door to the conversation that the city has tried to have.

“If you think you know St. Louis and have made assumptions about who lives where, and what that person looks like, let today be the day you challenge that” Thomas commented about the series. “Operate under the assumption that you're a stranger to this city. Because chances are, you really might be.”

By the end of the series, St. Louis residents will feel like a stranger in their own city; and admitting that we may not know as much as we think we do, is the first step to dismantling stereotypes and pushing us in the right direction. The series can be found at FTCTVofficial.com.

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