In support of the National School Walkout protest planned for April 20, The Berkshire Edge and The Green Tea Party of Great Barrington are offering a free screening of “The Children’s March” on Sunday April 15th, 4:00 p.m. at the Mahawie Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington. The screening is free and open to the public. The Oscar winning documentary depicts the historic Children’s March of 1963 with original and re-enacted footage.

The film shows a critical moment in history when children had a significant impact on the Civil Rights movement. Many of protesters in the Birmingham riots of 1963 were children and youth. Director Bobby Houston, Great Barrington, stated: “This film is highly relevant now, and I am offering it in support of the National School Walkout for gun control. The #neveragain movement follows in the great tradition of American youth speaking truth to power, saying “enough is enough”.

The #neveragain movement is gaining fast momentum in the US, with the March 24th, March for Our Lives protest that took place over the weekend. The group was formed in the aftermath of the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, in which 17 students and staff members were fatally shot by a former student armed with an AR-15 style semi-automatic rifle. The National School Walk Out protest planned for April 20 is a closely related event, organizing on reddit, an American social news aggregation, web content rating, and discussion website.

“We have the opportunity to again see the activism of children turn the tide of a political issue in America. This film is particularly relevant at this time and I hope the actions of youth in the 1963 Civil Rights protests will serve as an inspiration to the young activists today who are speaking out against gun violence.” said Houston.

The documentary will be opened with remarks by Houston. A discussion will follow the film, moderated by local youth and where youth will be encouraged to speak.

The film was co-produced by The Southern Law Poverty Center and HBO. The documentary is in current use as a teaching tool by Teaching Tolerance and the Zinn Education Project. The film won an Oscar for Documentary Short Subject.

(press release sent to WSBS from Beth Carlson and Bobby Houston for online and on air use) 

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