BIRMINGHAM, AL – July 6, 2020 – When Birmingham Police Officer Lane Harper isn’t on duty or serving his community alongside his non-profit organization “The Power of Life Foundation,” you can catch him starring in the upcoming feature film “Justice on Trial: The Movie,” premiering July 4, 2020.
The film is adapted from Dr. Chad Lawson Cooper’s stage play, “Justice on Trial,” where Harper was originally cast as the bailiff, but after reading his lines, Dr. Cooper changed his role to play Medgar Evers. That suited Harper just fine since Medgar Evers was born on July 2, and he was born on July 3. Harper prepared himself to embody this significant role by studying the history of Medgar Evers. Through his research of reading information on the Internet, and watching videos, Harper learned to emulate Evers’ body kinetics and mannerisms. Due to Harper’s passionate performance during rehearsals and the play, while it was touring, Dr. Cooper cast him as Medgar Evers for the film. It was a role he easily stepped into because he now felt a connection to the activist because of Evers’ passion for educating the African American community.
The movie, “Justice on Trial,” is about two civil rights attorneys suing the U.S. Department of Justice for reparations and damages done to African Americans while bringing back time-traveler witnesses to testify–in which the evidence is then given to a mixed-cultural jury, to deliberate,” explained Harper.
In the height of racial inequality and systemic racism today, this film aims to add the topic of reparations to the current conversation of racism and unjust treatment of African Americans in this country. A change is definitely going to come.
When asked about his views on reparations for the African American community Harper shares, “African Americans have brought so much financial wealth to this country through their inventions, ideas, and hard work, that those things still today shape our economy. Our ancestors have done so much to represent our cause. I believe that reparations are owed to the African American people, and I am not sure if we should receive the reparations financially or in the form of property, but I do know that something is owed to us.”
As a law enforcement officer and humanitarian, Harper understands the impact of the justice system that has negatively affected a single demographic of people for over 400 years. Harper wants to do his part in every way possible to inform the younger generation about what is fair and what is right.
The film hopes to bring the viewers’ attention to the racial disparity that still exists today. Although African Americans have contributed so much to the wealth of this country, we are still not treated equally.
Black culture remains prominent in American sports, religion, entertainment, and the workforce, and a shift is definitely needed in this country to create an equal ground for all Americans.
“We have to continue to teach and educate our peers, family, friends, and children about our African American history. We want younger generations to understand the physical and mental harm that the African American community has endured. Moreover, to encourage them to appreciate what we have been through, and continue to press the fight with forward-thinking for the direction in which we need to go. I really believe a Change is Gonna Come.”
About Officer Lane Harper
Police Academy Instructor Lane A. Harper is an 18-year police veteran who has Instructed and trained hundreds of new police recruits and regularly provides verbal de-escalation and Pressure Point Control Tactics (PPCT) in-service training for departmental personnel, including instructors. In addition to his public safety experience, he served as the First Staff Sergeant and Drill Instructor for the S.T.A.R. (Student Transition and Recovery Program) with the Birmingham School System alternative program. Lane Harper’s experience as a career front-line police officer, academy instructor, professional youth mentor, executive protection specialist, and martial arts expert have all resulted in his receiving exceptional praise and gratitude from the Birmingham community.
Written by Catisha Joseph
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