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Propaganda – Second Edition

In the six years since Jason “Propaganda” Petty’s original conversation with I Am Second, the rapper and poet has recorded two albums, released a volume of poetry, launched a podcast in collaboration with his wife Dr. Alma Zaragoza-Petty, and welcomed his second daughter into the world.  But, these significant personal, creative and career moments have woven through a volatile and difficult time in our culture that, for Jason, came to a head with the death of Eric Garner in 2014. “The trauma of witnessing the death of men that look and talk just like me – witnessing them die…and then to watch no charges being brought.” It’s a season in our history that has hit so many in a deep and visceral place – and one that left Jason questioning why, instead of uniting and rallying us in a collective outcry, deaths like Eric Garner’s have further divided and isolated us.  He moved through the depression and anxiety of bearing witness to violence and hatred, examining the source and expression of his own faith and creativity, looking for a place to land. “My survival – my meal – is intimately tied to yours. We’re literally in this together…and if we’re gonna get through this, we’re gonna get through this together.” It’s a truth both simple and deeply complex – one that strikes at the heart of Jason’s faith, defining his perspective and galvanizing his art.

6 thoughts on “Propaganda – Second Edition

  1. Jorge Alessandri at 10:25 am
    Jorge Alessandri

    Blessings IAS,

    My name is Jorge Alessandri. I lead the Miami-Dade Fellowship of Christian Peace Officers’ chapter, and I am also a Sergeant with Miami Beach Police Dept. I was writing a devotional about your bracelets and decided to look at your website again and saw Propaganda’s video. I am sorry for his pain. This problem is multi-layered and the only way this will be healed is through Jesus. We started something down here that God laid on my heart and I have attached the news article below and the link to the video (where it says website). My prayer is that this movement of officers praying for and with the community can bring about healing.

    I hope you are blessed by this.

    God bless you,



  2. Misty Garrison at 2:12 pm
    Misty Garrison

    I loved his analogy of stepping back from the near sighted picture to view the big picture, earth from space where there are no lines separating us. This is something I have often referred to when speaking about issues we face from a personal point of view. If we could stop making everything so personal – near nearsightedness / closed minded – and begin to view circumstances truthfully from a broader perspective many of our differences would be solved or never even divide us in the first place. I have used art as an analogy. For example, take the painting of Michelangelo’s the Creation of Man. If we stand with our face touching the picture we may be only to make out a specific aspect of the art work such as a hand, a finger, or simply the colors we are directly looking at. However, as we back away from the picture it begins to come into true focus and we are able to understand what we are looking at. Likewise, if we could take a step back from ourselves and view everyone else who crosses our path as a God given appointment we could begin to live up to the term Christians. Just because Christianity has seen its days of a negative definition doesn’t mean we cannot change that individually. Look at Jesus. One man is still making a difference in the lives of billions today. He makes a difference in my life daily. We, as people, need to stop drawing lines in the sand to separate ourselves from others (Hispanic, Indian, Black, White, Asian/ Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish/ healthy, unhealthy, fit, unfit/ educated, uneducated…) and begin looking at one another as individuals who either need our help or not. We are all a work in progress. We all have our weaknesses. We will all be striving for perfection until the day we die. We all fall short of the mark. We all need God’s grace, love, and forgiveness.

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