TEOF MANIFESTO

The Eye Of Freedom is a symbolic representation of one whose vision is set upon a self-defined meaning of freedom pertinent to their state of being; a freedom that may be mentally or visually perceivable but not immediately attainable.   

The Eye Of Freedom can be attributed to slaves who were held in captivity while witnessing slave owners and their families roam freely, and more contemporarily it is applicable to a place such as Rikers Island; the nation's second largest jail, renowned for its inhumane conditions, per the story of Kalief Browder and countless others whose names remain unknown.   

Rikers is geographically located next to New York City's LaGuardia Airport; so close that conversations often pause due to loud airplanes arriving and departing. While looking through jail fences incarcerated individuals see the world in motion via planes landing and taking off, while in the opposite direction they see Manhattan skyscrapers; all while being confined. Confined, yet the "eye" still lurks with curiosity and the want to taste the freedom it envisions. This imagery encapsulates The Eye Of Freedom.   

Beyond external perception, The Eye Of Freedom embodies one's internal sojourn to discover self identity, balance and worth. One whose conquest is to discover self-love amidst societal standards of perfection yet simultaneously battling the mindset of acceptance.   

Urban communities where gentrification is one block away from Section 8 housing where children who live below the poverty line see unfamiliar neighbors walking their dogs, jogging and commuting to work in fancy business suits appearing unbothered. The yearning eye of the child whose imagination would like a taste of this seemingly optimistic reality that is so close in distance yet so far fetched in reach is The Eye Of Freedom.   

The Eye Of Freedom is further embodied in the undocumented immigrant treated as an illegal on stolen land.The differently able body who remains resilient. The visionary who fights for redemption. The visionary who continues on the path to outcome while the resources to cross that bridge aren't foreseeable. The visionary who believes in the possibility of yes while all signs indicate no. These are but a small sample of those who see with The Eye Of Freedom.   

Thank you for your vulnerability and strength. Thank you for your power. The Eye Of Freedom is dedicated to you.  

-Messiah Ramkissoon