WRITING WITH FIRE

By C.J. Hirschfield

The recent convictions in the Ahmaud Arbery case were only possible thanks to a video shot on a smartphone; the device is now ubiquitous around the world and is shining light in places where darkness used to thrive.

 

The power of this portable camera to obtain justice is never more apparent than in the brilliant new documentary WRITING WITH FIRE now playing in theaters. The movie follows the lives and journalistic pursuits of reporters from India’s Dalit (formerly called untouchables) caste, who write for the country’s only news platform run by women.

Continue reading

THE PARENT CONNECTION ACCORDING TO “SIMPLE AS WATER” DIRECTOR MEGAN MYLAN

An Interview by Ashia Lance

SIMPLE AS WATER is an exquisitely shot and urgent film that looks at war and displacement through the lens of parenthood. The San Francisco International Film Festival’s “Doc Stories” noted “The modern world has become all too familiar with images of refugees fleeing their homes, desensitized to the onslaught of harrowing images and heartbreaking stories. Academy Award® winner Megan Mylan (LOST BOYS OF SUDAN, SMILE PINKI) trains her lens on the everyday acts of courage and determination that drive her protagonists, featuring families in Turkey, Greece, the US, and Syria. From a soft-spoken Uber driver who sacrifices everything for his teenage brother to far-flung parents urged on by parental love, this timeless film explores ties that bind and the dreams that empower humans to overcome the unthinkable.”

We invite you to discover from Mylan’s film and this interview what happens after these displaced individuals find sanctuary and slip from the headlines?

Continue reading

ATTICA-FIVE DAYS

By C.J. Hirschfield

Key Art for ATTICA. Photo credit: Courtesy of SHOWTIME.

Teaching critical race theory in schools enrages the right wing. This theory states that U.S. social institutions—including the criminal justice system—are laced with racism embedded in rules and procedures that lead to differential outcomes by race.

On the 50th anniversary of the largest prison rebellion in U.S. history, it is high time we examine exactly what took place at Attica; why, and how. Not for the purpose of blaming a race, but to educate, and to inspire us to not repeat the mistakes of the past.  Emmy-winning director Stanley Nelson and co-director Traci A. Curry have provided just that with their excellent new documentary, ATTICA. Continue reading

FAUCI: PLAGUE POLITICS

 

By C.J. Hirschfield

Cher. Elvis. Plato. Beyonce. Their fame is such that only one name is needed for recognition.

And now– Fauci, perhaps one of the most unlikely cultural icons ever. A new documentary puts this remarkable public servant within the context of history, in which, as he describes it, “the two most devastating pandemics in the last 100 years are the bookends of my life and career.”

Continue reading

Lessons Learned

By C.J. Hirschfield

This meme regarding the controversial teaching of critical race theory in schools showed up in my Facebook feed this week: “If black and brown children are old enough to experience racism, white children are old enough to learn about it.”

Continue reading

Fruits of Labor

By C.J. Hirschfield

On the day of this writing, 13,464 trays of strawberries were harvested in California, the state that produces 83 percent of the strawberries grown in the U.S. Who picks them? Kids as young as 12.

 

Poster by Maribel Martinez and Yen Tan

Continue reading