April 07, 2008

Charlton Heston And Dr. King

Noted actor Charlton Heston has died. While the actor is often considered to be aligned with so-called conservative causes, his political activism actually began in the Sixties. Perhaps it is something of a testament to the justness of the Civil Rights cause, as well as the broad reach of Dr. King that, Heston, along with others, joined Dr. King in his fabled March on Washington.

CHARLTON Heston once waved a colonial musket over his head at a rally and warned gun control supporters they'd have to take it "from my cold, dead hands".

In his later years, the star was a passionate right winger and figurehead of the controversial NRA - the National Rifle Association.

But when he first shot to prominence, Heston was a Democrat and a vocal supporter of the Kennedys and Martin Luther King, describing the African American leader as "a 20th century Moses for his people".

The actor joined civil rights marches and picket lines.

March 04, 2008

Civil Rights: Brick By Brick

Brick by Brick is a one-hour television documentary dealing with on going New York-based Civil Right's struggles in the areas of housing and education. See the About page for the film here. Additional information from the Center For American Progress available here.

“Brick by Brick: A Civil Rights Story,” follows three families in a contemporary American battle for equal opportunity in housing and education. The struggle over racial discrimination and the fight to overcome systemic housing segregation is shown through the eyes of three families in Yonkers, NY. At a Reel Progress screening yesterday, Bill Kavanagh, the film’s director, and Gene Capello, a central figure in the struggle, discussed Yonkers and the ongoing problems of housing discrimination.

Housing discrimination holds implications far beyond geographical boundaries. An African-American family excluded from one Yonkers neighborhood encountered problems when their children were denied access to quality education and opportunities. Families such as the Capellos disengaged from the community as a result of housing discrimination, creating a vicious cycle that made even more housing discrimination easier. Eventually the disadvantages became intergenerational and harder to escape as equality of opportunity vanished.

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