What These Families Reveal When They Have 'The Talk' With Their Sons Will Break Your Heart Into Bits

It's time to talk about "the talk."

"Listen," a father says to his son at the beginning of this striking video from The Brotherhood/Sister Sol. He settles back into the couch and places his clasped hands on his knee, almost as if bracing himself for the conversation to come. His teenage son, who had been engrossed in a video game, reluctantly looks away from the TV screen. 


These few seconds are familiar ones.

They echo the many coming-of-age films that have depicted "the talk" -- that is, the sex talk given to young adults by their parents -- but the actual talk that follows might be suprising to some.

"One day you're going you're going to be stopped by the police, and when that happens-" the father begins, before the scene suddenly switches to a mother having the same talk with her son. 

"Always make sure that they can see your hands. Never move suddenly," she says, continuing his train of thought.

By the time the scene switches again, what's happening is clear. "The talk" the video is depicting isn't the sex talk, but one that's even more important for certain families.  

It's depicting the world-shattering talk that parents of color are forced to have with their kids when they can no longer avoid a heartbreaking truth: that the policemen and women they taught their kids would always protect them are now disproportionately likely to target them and put them in harm's way.

It's a crushing reveal.

Poignantly, the video also depicts another kind of conversation about the police, one between a white father and a white son as he leaves for the night. 

For them, "the talk" goes very differently.

"And hey, if you ever feel like you're in trouble, just reach out for the police. They're there to help," the white dad says.

The video's four scenes depict the divide between how police officers have been statistically shown to respond to the different people they encounter, and how families have had to adapt in the hopes of keeping their kids safe.

A ProPublica study found that young black males were 21 times more likely to be shot  than their white peers, a tragic figure.

"Do we want one America or two?" the video asks.

Which also begs a second question: how are we going to make a safe, more equal America happen?

The Brotherhood/Sister Sol is trying spark a much-needed national conversation about discrimination and police brutality in the hopes of working towards a solution. They're calling it "The Talk About The Talk."

Share this article and join the conversation.


Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest news and exclusive updates.