Western Front, Vancouver BC 2007
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"Billy" was inspired by my recollection of watching the movie "Billy Jack" in 1971, a defining moment in my life. Billy Jack was the ultimate hero: a halfbreed warrior who would gladly give his life for the people, but never had to because he could kick the shit out of any redneck around. Even as he was led away to prison he remained resolute, undefeated, and most importantly, unrepentant.
In preparation for this performance I watched "Billy Jack" for the second time, and I was struck by two things: how painfully cheesy the movie really was, and despite this how powerfully I was affected by one scene: a mixed group of Native and white kids go into an ice cream shop, where they are refused service. A local racist and his goon enter and "fix" the problem by pouring white flour over the Native kids' heads. His second victim is a beautiful young girl of ten. To my amazement I started crying watching this, which led me to wonder: was I crying because of what I was seeing, or was I remembering the impact the scene had on me at eight years of age?
"Billy", Western Front, Vancouver BC 2007. Duration: 2:56.
The video loop used in "Billy". Duration: 11:11.