Can I ask you a couple questions? Go ahead. Please feel free. I’m going to put this giant light on you. Like I’m gonna put a … I’m used to it. I’m an open book. I’m used to film… . Yeah I don’t mind questions. Ok, that’s awesome. If you do a video, won’t like and if you say something you did, won’t it get you in trouble? Or like won’t people try
to come kill you or something or you know what I mean? They already did.
Oh, they already try? They get one try? I mean like … aren’t you afraid they’re gonna do something to you cuz I want to get you in I wasn’t afraid the first time. I took pictures of the truck before I got shot. Oh yeah. That’s how they found the truck
and everything… before they even knew my condition, they new truck, tag,
everything, cuz I took of pictures of beforehand. I actually thought they were
they robbed me because I was a drug dealer, too. So I thought they were there to robbed me so I took pictures because they were… They
stood out like a sore thumb because they were a truck full of white guys in black
neighborhood. Oh, so it was obvious.Yeah so when they kept stopping in front of my house, I got out from
behind them and I took pictures and everything and I told him go… and I got
out on the interstate, they got behind me I didn’t realize there was another vehicle in the neighborhood too. I called 911 while they were chasing me. Ok, I didn’t get that part. That it started to…
I hit about 110 on the interstate to make sure they were actually chasing and me when you know they kept up… That’s when I hit 911 because I knew it was about to happen… Something was about to happen. I was about to get off the interstate and then go… I was about to drop a car off and then I was gonna have the cops meet me there at the store. I mean that’s
right at the hospital um where I was going, but I never made it there. They caught up to YOU?? Yes… When I was on the phone oh you know it’s pretty good traffic it was about 4:30 in the
afternoon um it’s during the week too so yeah it was rush hour traffic. Wow that’s been like that kind of like
the most terrifying experience ever or is that just I mean was it did you know
what was gonna what was going down all of a sudden or not really? I knew I’d
been shot we got shot. I didn’t know why I was blind. I couldn’t connect the two. I
couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t see so I kept trying to wipe it out of my
eyes. Yeah but I didn’t realize that the bullet had um went straight through the bridge of my nose and went inside my eye… you know this socket
over here.. stayed under that socket of my eye for about a month and a half. Yeah but um … Was that the scariest time life? NO. I don’t know if you wanna quantify that but ya… NO.. I think I was actually pretty at peace when I wrecked well I mean when I stopped the car and
everything There was a person there.. I swear to God it was an ANGEL because um the police officers don’t know who it was that was there… they said nobody was
there. I was talking to somebody that um kept me calm… let me know the police were on the way…. When I was praying they’re like are you praying? I’m like yes. They’re like good, you need to. It’s bad. So I kept on and on
it wasn’t asking God to heal me it wasn’t any of that.. Just kinda… Yeah this.. you can’t…when you’re in that
it’s such a like personal yeah… I get it.. you don’t… Nobody knows how they’re going to be and
if they say they do they don’t. I prayed basically for forgiveness honestly. I tried to
make it on that lifestyle no I’ve make it out of that lifestyle. I’ve written my whole account down from my
personal point of view to make it easier to give to somebody if you want to read
it. I’ll send it to you. Yeah it’s my it’s my detail for detail account step by
step what happened that day and everything anyway um I didn’t as well
make it. I thought I was gonna die at the end honestly.. I didn’t lose consciousness the whole time. I was so hyped up… I was a meth dealer so
I was an addict… Yeah you could knock me out with a cannonball so um that’s
why I was able to get off the road and I guess I realized I was off the road I
stand on the brakes you know it stopped the car and um that’s when the person
was there just BAM that fast and um yeah it’s crazy but um… anyway… I’m sorry was it the most terrifying day? No I’ve had some pretty terrifying moments in prison. That’s kinda a loaded question, huh? So
yeah like I’ve had a really really really really hard life. Yeah I can tell … it’s um… You know what…
not that I’m this big philosophy person, but it … LIFE sure looks a lot
easier on TV. It really does…I know that’s like you know just really looks pretty stinking
easy on TV. You know like I guess like if somebody try to air my story on TV as a
fictional thing nobody would buy it. Why? You know I got shot with a 45
caliber bullet to the face almost point-blank range.
You shouldn’t be alive … is that what you mean? No, YEAH, but this eye looks ok, but I’m I’m legally blind
I have no peripheral vision. I can’t see this at all. So you actually got, kinda one in a million… I didn’t lose any I didn’t
lose any neurological function whatsoever. That’s seriously a miracle. Yeah god was with me the whole time. I healed um can’t tell it but I have a scar from right there to right there. I had a craniotomy done. They took the whole front part of my skull out and I had a CSF leak because I was leaking brain fluid out of my nose so a month and a half after I got shot, I had a
craniotomy done and so I was neuro ICU five days knocked out. Like they ..I couldn’t like they couldn’t get me you know you come to… for two days I finally woke up…
When I woke back up… I thought it was like 1996 for a while. It was bad… I had
regressed so bad for temporarily like I couldn’t remember anything. When I finally did … God took care of me. That’s pretty normal for that type of recovery isn’t it…My recovery has been way better than they ever predicted. Um… way better. So like they said like my pain level from one to ten would never be below a five. Like I
got it yeah I got a two now …um a year and a half ago I was on 30 pills like four
or five opiates and xanax and today because the medical marijuana program I
mark I am on nothing but Excedrin migraine and that it. That’s the best thing that could ever finally happened. Saved my life and …
and like people can like yeah they’re like oh it’s a STONER like man like that
euphoria thing was gone like the first like week or so. This is gonna sound strange but I might look the part but I am I’ve never actually had a… I’ve never seen a
marijuana leaf or anything in my entire life… never smoke, touched… I’m like this
goodie two shoes. I’m absolutely 100% for using it as medicinal 1000%… it’s… I’ve seen miracles. I’ve literally seen miracles. It works. It’s helped me… yeah it like I don’t have any sense of smell so I had a nauseous. I don’t get hungry, I get
nauseous all right…so I have permanently have the effects of chemo basically so
um cannabis helps me eat helps me function, give me my life back. I think it’s a miracle… Oh yes it’s really helpful. I’m a I’m a huge advocate for it. I’ve went to
rallies, I’ve spoke at rallies help them do that. I’m very active in I’m pretty
active now that I’ve been shot. It’s crazy. If that’s not gonna change your life then I don’t know what is. I’m so sorry you had to go through all that. I think it was a ok.. I’m not sorry because
God’s using this in a way that I never expected …My quality of life now is
better than it ever has been. So I’m good. No, I think I get what you’re saying, it’s just… it’s a rough way to go, but some people just go the hard way …you know you know that’s me why do you
always choose the hard way I said man Somebody says to me,… Why do you always choose the hard way?? Why do you assume I see two paths? It’s not a choice, ya know…Why does everyone assume
hey why do you why does everybody assume there’s more than one way to choose it’s
just like dude like these my cards I’ve been dealt. I’m not bitching about it I’m
not complaining but it’s not poor pitiful me and always woes me and all this other shit..It’s about, ok, this has happened what next? This is how it went down. You can judge and look back and go Oh…Yeah yeah I get that. Like I’ve served eight years in prison like I have I have a background that most
people would really just go oh I give up. but no been on my own since I was 16,… my mom died it was 15. I moved out and that’s it Yeah it’s been a hard road but um I
don’t like III don’t lay any blame on anything.. I accept full responsibility you know for getting my own ass in prison get my own ass in in the situations that I did so like I don’t I don’t dwell on that
I’ve learned from it. And that me now… I am well outfitted to help so many other
people so that’s so that’s what I’ve been doing left to hate um I call me
projects not sure I can say about the project Oh cuz I would have to ask
Angela before I put something on like the record of the project yeah yeah
we’re just changing platforms like to Donny argh our own platform and I’ve
been one of the architects behind that um but um basically what it’s been doing
um we tried to go in and people that are mourning out of the movement we try to
go and help them learn a new way of life because a former yeah we’ll see
a former an extremist when they leave Society for that movement they are
ostracized by society so now there’s only a small percentage that except some well guess what you can’t go back there
so now when you leave that you don’t have a place we say here’s the place ok
because if you don’t have a place people will stay in it and it will grow bitter
and more hateful and more reasonable and they will act out harder so we give them
a place we show them connections and we show them this is the family that you
know this is the community that you were looking for and we don’t want you to go
out and kill so drugs or do whatever else you want to do or like don’t want
to do you know we want you to be the best you you can be and we’re here to
help and be a community of you know other people you know like you know well
you know we Memphis ourselves as formers you know former extremists former this
no it’s just you know and I think it’s beautiful agreement
crackin I’m not I’m not a big crier but it’s I I get it
you you offer a sanctuary that if you want to start your life over and we will
help you help yourself and that’s like people see the problem with extremists
is they desensitize certain human groups right certain groups that we have some
reason classified so harsh but so we dehumanize them as extremists we
dehumanize them where they don’t become people where they are easier to harm
because they don’t really exist I’m not really like what I’m doing doesn’t
really have any implications or some people you know it C so that viewpoint
is dangerous the humanization because it’s like oh they don’t really exist
it’s like it’s like over here when the military is gone yeah we killed so many
insurgents today now I’m gonna flip a perspective for you
Society has done X exact same thing with extremists they’re not humans we hate
them every time they pop up we hate you hate versus hate is not he’ll society
has be humanized them as well so it’s a cycle that’s still feeding itself we are
stepping in to break that we are trying to show people that doesn’t work yes
like this is gonna sound I mean this is very emotional subject for me this is my
life’s passion I don’t know why it just is the way it is and I don’t know kind
of why but just six years old I saw a man who was homeless and I’d was walking
by him and I was like I mean if I could have I was like what’s half I mean I was
six but I was like I I saw that man and everyone just walked
by like he was nothing and I was like did I see that am i imagining things I
mean that’s how I was just born that way and I I don’t I don’t have any
dehumanizing feelings towards people who are extremists I’m not happy about it
but you know what Tana see I have this craving to get it I don’t get it I want
to understand because I think Oh arrogant you know why privileged me I
can help them if I could just get it like if I could understand if I could
keep them I’m an educator so you know that’s kind of weird like look I want to was incarcerated I went through Ramadan
with Muslims to understand Islam that’s a 30 day fasting no eating drinking
anything during the day and I drink in smoke and I wasn’t on the list to be
able to eat with him so I had to eat my own stuff at night yes yes I wanted to
know okay I grew up in Jackson Mississippi I don’t know anything about
Muslim anything I know TV around people yes I want to know what it is you do
I’ve always been especially aware I was raised yeah I was raised in a multi um
religious environment like my mom raised me pagan my other family members on like
our LDS Baptist in you know all aboard so yeah so I’m really open to different
religious you know views and perspectives and I’m have a very
intellectual standpoint and I like I can observe fully understand without
believing it but I can fully accept anything I’m saying is I can fully
understand yeah I wanted to understand what it was so like that’s the only way
to really do it is really to get in there and to understand and with the
commonality we know with common traits that I’ve seen you know usually are
people want to belong so can especially yeah all right you know some people do
the healthy route they go to the military I have a lot from a lot of
family you know my mom’s mother so some military that’s a healthy manner of
feeling special in me yeah and they can’t find a place and
it’s just maybe like a little stunted maybe there’s something other factors um
that would drive them to feel special in other ways
some people join gangs I did when I was younger and then that transpired into me
joining barian Brotherhood when I was the only one so almost everybody I can
personally relate because about a couple years back when um when I was when
things were really getting fired up with you know the hating Muslim people and
whatnot I just this is kind of my little son he was 12 and I said we’re going to
a we’re going to a we go to a mosque I said I call the nearest mosque I said
hey I don’t know if you do this but they took us has for five hours we asked him
about I mean we were like we asked him about terrorism we asked about it was my
son like he goes mom that was one of the best most amazing experiences my life
and I was like I wanted to note from the real people not from the go to the rabbi
if you know it’s about Jews go to whoever it is you know and most times
the rabbi or the Imams will be more than happy to talk to you it was amazing the
only thing I did wrong was not supposed to but the man but they it was amazing
he was real he was he just it was an amazing experience


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