This series has been fantastic to keep up with. I absolutely advise you to check out parts one, two and three. In this installment, Carmelo visited young inmates at Rikers Island and took a little while to speak with them and let them feel heard. He also toured the dormitories but the cameras were forced to shut down.
The wretched treatment of all the inmates at Rikers Island inspired Melo to take a look for himself. In the wake of so many different and horrifying incidents, a celebrity athlete using his name to shed light on the corners of society is a good first step toward positive corrections.
Why did you want to visit Rikers Island?
Carmelo: Rikers is a place that we've all heard of. I was amazed to find out that it's the largest penal colony in the world. Recently, we've heard and read a lot about abuse and violence there. I wanted to see the situation there for myself, as a New Yorker.
So many times athletes are painted as pure egotists, but Carmelo is taking control of his image. My only problem with this video is that I wish the young men's names were given if they spoke on camera. Even if it were just a first name. They may be lost in a bureaucratic tornado, but given the chance to make them more than an inmate prototype, I truly wish VICE could have humanized their struggle. The common viewer needs to identify with the individuals portrayed. I guess I just feel like it's easier to put yourself in someone's shoes when you know their name.
Thankfully these shorts must be chock full of excellent footage that has yet to be seen. Here's to hoping there are more episodes and maybe even a longer feature. I'm sure there are more angles to Carmelo Anthony.