Let the People Decide w/ filmmaker Gavin Guerra

Date(s) - Friday 05/01/2020
7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

The Sanctuary for Independent Media

The struggle over voting rights is headline news but, as “Let The People Decide” shows, the fight goes back generations as strategies to suppress the vote have evolved over the decades. It covers the last 50 years, and displays how the struggle for civil rights has evolved. The film offers a series of interviews through which we learn about various figures and organizations that have emerged in this fight for the right to vote. “Let The People Decide” emphasizes just how long people have been fighting against unfair voting laws. From members of the current generation to activists of the civil rights movement, this issue is not one that has been left in the past.

Co-sponsored by: NAACP Troy Branch


4:30 PM | “Be the Media! Archival Media and Political Documentary” w/ Gavin Guerra.
7:00 PM | Screening “Let the People Decide with filmmaker Q&A


“Let the People Decide” is a documentary film that traces the struggle for voting rights in America from the Civil Rights Movement up through today’s political climate. Following the arc of the last 50 years, we’ll see how what was once a social struggle about civil rights became a “Southern Strategy” to divide the vote, and has emerged as a political doctrine of tactics and cynicism designed for a country with rapidly changing demographics. All sides claim the right to vote is a sacred institution that needs defending, yet hundreds of thousands of people are finding it more difficult to exercise that right in a country that holds itself up as the beacon of democracy.

Let The People Decide is primarily a “Then & Now” film. From the activists of the civil rights movement to the current generation that has picked up the fight in the 21st century. Today, the NAACP in North Carolina is leading the fight against new laws aimed at restricting voter turn out in their state. The film follows a case argued in federal court that sets precedent for other challenges in other states with similar laws. Rev. William Barber II is leading this group and we follow him as he protests, gets arrested in acts of civil disobedience and inspires those around him to stand up for their rights as equal citizens. We also hear from celebrity activists such as Harry Belafonte and Dick Gregory who spent most of their adult lives engaged in the fight for social justice. The film connects the dots across the decades to show how the events from half a century earlier are directly related to the laws being passed today that are undermining people’s ability to participate in the election process. No matter how much progress has been made, future generations must always remain vigilant in the struggle for equality.

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