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Lani in her West Philly home, posing with her homemade wreath.  photo credit: Kris J. Eden

Lani grew up and raised her children in West and Southwest Philadelphia.  She expresses her love and creativity through her cooking ,baking, knitting, and all manner of crafts.  Beyond her four children and her many grandchildren, she continues to enfold the people around her into an ever-growing family.

In our interview, she notes how intergenerationally, the conversation about interacting with police has shifted. Where once police were trusted and esteemed (as she was taught), they are now to be approached with caution (as she’s now teaching).

Lani has her own past, that includes being arrested for driving a stolen vehicle.  Yet she was far more shaken by a recent experience with police while in a car with her daughter and grandchildren.  Its implications for young men like her grandsons gave her pause, as they may you.

Lani shares several stories of her past, including her arrest for driving a stolen vehicle.  Those stories, which explain her current wariness of law enforcement,  are all available in the full version of our interview, in the link below.

My full interview with Lani Upshaw

The short selection of vignettes on this page tell two stories from the recent past.

Pulled Over: Lani is in a car with her daughter and grandchildren when they are stopped by the police.

“We Got ‘Em”: As they leave, the officers reveal the real reason they stopped Lani’s daughter.

Above the Law: Lani’s father is arrested after calling the police to enforce a restraining order.

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