Please have a look at "My America" which we have re-released free of charge in light of recent events. The film is a polemic on the topics of race, guns and misunderstanding on both sides of the spectrum and was meant to generate discussion in the racially divisive environment of 2010, ramping up to the 2012 election. The film co-writen and produced by my partner, Joseph James Bellamy seems sadly more relevant than ever. (Download presskit to read more.)
My current project, (my 11th feature-length film), is a documentary which focuses heavily on the 2016 US Presidential election. I wanted to tackle the subject in a way which would be memorable, using my Vine project, (with 16 million views and growing), as a springboard. I decided to meet the candidates and simply offer them a symbolic "flower for peace," as a gesture that should they become president, that there be peace over their term. It has had a bit of a Rorschack-test-effect, bringing out parts of the personalities of candidates that we might not have otherwise seen. Enjoy the "news reel" teaser below, and clips on YouTube.
Recently, my encounter with the anti-Islamic group BAIR was featured on NOW THIS, and achieved a bit of virality at over 700 thousand views. I was at a Donald Trump rally in Dallas, TX, and saw the men at the protest, standing with their AR-15s, and I decided to have a friendly chat, while I put flowers in the barrels of their guns, (recreating the iconic Bernie Boston photo of the Civil Rights era. The Dallas Morning News snapped a photo, which inititally went viral, leading to an article, leading to my video getting picked up.
We are on the precipice of a great new era of growth and transformation. For the past century we have been in the throes of teenage growing pains— going from an agricultural society to an industrial society, hungry for natural resources and raw materials to fuel our growth-- a growth that has increasingly put us at war-- largely for the purpose of drilling oil from the ground.
But now we must prepare ourselves to make the transformation from an industrial / war based society born of fossil fuels, to a conscientious society based on new earth-friendly technologies which will usher in a new golden Age of Enlightenment of prosperity and growth. Like all growth and transformation, it will be painful at first. There will be resistance. There will be protests in the street. The power elite will pit the working classes against each other using social issues as wedges in order to maintain their violent stranglehold on their dying way of life.
But this transformation is upon us, whether the powerful like it or not. The earth cannot much longer sustain the abuses we put her through. Our bridges and infrastructure are collapsing-- and if we are to rebuild America, and bring her into the shining new land of prosperity, we must embrace renewable energy and alternative sources of biodegradable materials such as hemp and soy. We must harness the wind and the sea.
Dr. Cornel West
As it says in Genesis, we are to be Stewards of the earth -- and rather than pollute it, as fracking is know to do, and as oil spills are known to do, we can fuel our vehicles on water, as the Navy is preparing to do. If it is good for the military-- then surely we should incentivize these new revolutionary sources of energy to put those old ways behind- and herald in a new profitable era in which men women and children can spend more time improving their bodies, minds and spirits, rather than languish day to day in gridlock only to spend our lives in cubicles pushing paper to and fro while we grow more unhealthy and unhappy.
Rod interviews Consul General of Mexico, Daniel Hernéndez Joseph regarding the beating of a homeless man by Trump supporters.
We must embrace transformation, and step into the future. Where eliminating our dependence on foreign oil will allow us to budget outreach. So that we can build houses and schools, rather than drop bombs and send Drone strikes. We must feed the poor as all major world religions advocate. Our growth and prosperity will be the world’s growth and prosperity. How a society (or in our case a superpower) treats the least of the world’s citizen’s is how history will judge us. Our generosity will make us great. I ask every American citizen to look into their heart and ask, how can we make the world better? This is how we will forge a new era of peace and prosperity.
SYNOPSIS: Director Rod Webber travels the country and offers a "flower for peace" to the 2016 US presidential candidates. Born out of his partner's sickness, in an effort to cheer her up, Webber began by traveling the country giving flowers to strangers as performance art. Amassing millions of views on social media, he took the concept to the campaign trail, once again spawning countless viral videos praying for peace with Jeb Bush, Lindsey Graham and John McCain.
As Webber’s mission evolves, his six-minute biblical sparring session with Gov. Mike Huckabee was seen by millions, pitting the left and the right against each other as to who had “won.” Later, Webber’s probing public conversation with NJ Gov. Chris Christie lead to Christie’s admissions about his sex life and “the rhythm method,”which became fodder for late-night comedy for a week.
If that wasn't weird enough, Gov. John Kasich invited Webber to sing David Bowie's "Space Oddity" with him dressed as the Bowie character “Aladdin Sane.” Causing a positive stir on the campaign trail, Kasich asks him back to perform the Beatles, "Here Comes the Sun," and other Bowie classics on stage with the presidential candidate.
But things aren't always so full of smiles, as Donald Trump kicks Webber out of dozens of rallies. Early in the campaign, Trump calls on Webber during a Q&A, and Webber responds by quoting scripture, critical of a candidate like Trump leading the angry crowd to rough up Webber on his way out. At the next Q&A, Webber raises his hand— an act so radical and anti-Trump that Trump staff and police grab him from behind, and throw him over a table, and then arrest him.
Not to be discouraged by the intimidation tactics of a bully, Webber attended 37 Trump rallies, and documented countless arrests and acts of violence, ultimately stepping in to protect Trump supporters in a number of cases to try to maintain peace.
VALDOSTA SPEAKS (The students of VSU talk about the Trump rally ejection)
Appearing on RT's "Watching the Hawks" to discuss ejection and arrest at Trump Q&A.VIDEO
Statement regarding "NO LABELS" incident, (and arrest during Trump Q&A).
However, on Oct. 12th, I was assaulted at the "No Labels Problem Solvers" convention by Donald Trump security, along with Manchester NH police department. I asked Mr. Trump at a Q&A if he would address my being roughed up at a Trump rally in Rochester, NH a couple weeks previous. For my efforts, I was grabbed from behind and thrown over a table, dragged, then thrown to the floor again. After being detained, then officially released, I was escorted from the property. I then approached police to press charges against the Trump staff and officers who assaulted me-- at which point I was arrested for "disorderly conduct" and "resisting arrest." Ironically, there is video of me offering the police a flower during this alleged "resisting arrest."
This is a first amendment issue. The freedom of speech is what I am fighting for. If Mr. Trump is afraid to answer-- and he responds with violence-- refusing to denounce the actions of his supporters (in Rochester) and his staff in Manchester, then this is what we can expect under a Trump presidency.