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Hate Crimes in the Heartland

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Hate Crimes in the Heartland
Directed byRachel V. Lyon
Produced byRachel V. Lyon
Written byRachel V. Lyon
Bavand Karim
Music byJon Brennan
CinematographyBavand Karim
Edited byJeremy Freedberg
Steve Taylor
Production
company
Distributed byAlexander Street Press
Release date
  • February 3, 2014 (2014-02-03) (United States)
Running time
52 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

Hate Crimes in the Heartland is a 2014 American documentary film directed by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Rachel V. Lyon.[1] The film examines American race relations through the analysis of two events, both of which took place in Tulsa, Oklahoma: the 1921 Tulsa race riot and the 2012 "Good Friday Murders."[2]

Background[edit]

Filmmakers Rachel Lyon and Bavand Karim wrote and developed the project after learning of the "Good Friday Murders" in Tulsa.[3] As part of the scholarship on race relations connected to the film, Lyon co-authored the paper "Digital Divisions: Racial Injustice and the Limits of Social Informatics in The State of Georgia vs. Troy Anthony Davis,"[4] which was presented at the Northern Kentucky Law Review Symposium in 2012.[5] Initial funding for the film was raised through a Kickstarter campaign.[6] Lyon and Karim traveled to Tulsa and Chicago to conduct interviews,[3] and footage of the race riot survivors was acquired from the film Before They Die!

Production was completed in December 2013.

Synopsis[edit]

The film examines the underlying racial tensions in Tulsa, Oklahoma, through two central events, the 1921 race riots and the 2012 "Good Friday Murders." Through interviews with a variety of scholars and public figures, the documentary explores the roots of American racial animosity, presenting Tulsa as a microcosm of the American social, cultural, and racial landscape, and scrutinizing the role of the media in controlling information, and influencing public response and the justice system.

Interviews[edit]

People interviewed in Hate Crimes in the Heartland include:

  • Rev. Jesse Jackson, Civil Rights Activist and Founder, Rainbow/PUSH
  • Charles Ogletree, Jesse Climenko Professor of Law at Harvard Law School
  • Andrea Lyon, Dean and Professor of Law at Valparaiso University Law School
  • Dewey F. Bartlett, Jr., Mayor of Tulsa
  • Tim Harris, Tulsa District Attorney
  • Chuck Jordan, Chief of Police, Tulsa Police Department

Screenings[edit]

In January 2014, Lioness Media Arts announced a partnership with The Ford Foundation, Amnesty International, and the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard University for a series of national screenings and discussion forums.[7]

Hate Crimes in the Heartland premiered nationally in seven cities during a Black History Month tour in February 2014, with screenings held in Tulsa,[8] Oklahoma City,[9] Cincinnati,[10] and on the campuses of Florida Atlantic University[11] and DePaul.[12] The film has also been featured at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center,[13][14] the Cleveland Museum of Art,[15][16] the University of Oklahoma,[17] Harvard University,[18] and the New School.[19]

Response[edit]

Following the film's release, JustFilms Director Cara Mertes of the Ford Foundation stated, "Hate Crimes in the Heartland revisits powerful moments in American history — past and present — that remind us of the profound racial tensions that have shaped the country's trajectory."[7]

Amnesty International praised the film's message of reconciliation. "Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. asserted that civil rights are human rights, and that is the message that we take away from this film," said Steven W. Hawkins, Executive Director of Amnesty International USA. "Given the historical racial tensions of the last century and the ongoing racial violence of today, we must work to build a culture that values and believes in human rights if we hope to overcome these problems."[7]

David Harris, Managing Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice, emphasized the film's potential for public education. "Through the personal accounts of survivors, witnesses, journalists, and lawmakers, Hate Crimes in the Heartland enriches the public understanding of the underlying tension in America's heartland, exposing injustices that occurred and giving a voice to those whose perspectives would otherwise remain unheard," Harris said.[20]

According to Harvard Professor Charles Ogletree, "Heartland gives an honest accounting of the 1921 Tulsa race riot, revealing Tulsa's story in the context of racial disparity happening in every city in America today as well."[7]

Awards[edit]

Hate Crimes in the Heartland received the Paul Robeson Award for Best Feature Documentary at the 2014 Newark Black Film Festival.[21]

Release[edit]

The documentary is available through Alexander Street Press.[20] In November 2015, it was acquired by Virgil Films & Entertainment. The film premiered on Netflix on Feb. 1, 2016.[22]

See also[edit]

  • Tulsa Race Riot
  • Before They Die! (2010), documentary film directed by Reggie Turner.[23]
  • "Reconstructing the Dreamland: The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation" (2002), book by Alfred Brophy.[24]

References[edit]

  1. "FRONTLINE Programs – Men Who Molest". PBS/WGBH-TV. April 16, 1985. Archived from the original on May 7, 2016. Retrieved August 29, 2017.
  2. "Good Friday Shootings". Tulsa World.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "NKU team creates documentary" (Press release). Northern Kentucky University. February 7, 2014. Archived from the original on February 9, 2014. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  4. McPhail, Mark; Lyon, Rachel; Harris, David (2012), "Digital Divisions: Racial (In)Justice and the Limits of Social Informatics in The State of Georgia vs. Troy Anthony Davis" (PDF), Northern Kentucky Law Review, 39 (2): 137–161, archived (PDF) from the original on 2018-02-24, retrieved 2015-04-22
  5. "Northern Kentucky Law Review Symposium" (PDF) (Press release). NKU Chase Law & Informatics Institute. March 1, 2012.
  6. "Tulsa Hate Crime Capital on Kickstarter". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2015-04-22.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 ""Hate Crimes in the Heartland," Documentary on Racial Tensions in the United States, to Screen Across the Country" (Press release). Amnesty International. January 1, 2014. Archived from the original on May 3, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  8. Archer, Kim (January 30, 2014), "Documentary 'Hate Crimes in Heartland' to premiere Monday in Tulsa", Tulsa World
  9. Felder, Ben (September 2, 2014), "Church hosts film in effort to spark discussion", Oklahoma Gazette, archived from the original on February 2, 2015, retrieved April 22, 2015
  10. Hurdelbrink, Manda (September 13, 2014), Locally-produced award-winning documentary 'Hate Crimes in the Heartland' at the Cincinnati Film Festival, Cincinnati.com, archived from the original on October 22, 2015, retrieved April 22, 2015
  11. "Florida Premiere of Hate Crimes in the Heartland" (Press release). Lioness Media Arts. February 11, 2014. Archived from the original on January 16, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  12. "'Hate Crimes in the Heartland' premieres at DePaul" (Press release). DePaul University. February 18, 2014. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  13. "Freedom Center premieres film 'Hate Crimes in the Heartland,' a groundbreaking new documentary on race relations in America". American Israelite. January 22, 2014. Archived from the original on April 22, 2015.
  14. "NKU professor's film explores hate crimes". FOX19. February 19, 2014. Archived from the original on January 20, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  15. Goodwin, R (January 13, 2015), "The Making of 'Hate Crimes in the Heartland' with Writer and Producer, Rachel Lyon", The Cleveland Museum of Art, archived from the original on April 27, 2015, retrieved April 22, 2015
  16. South Euclid United Church of Christ, Cleveland Museum of Art and Partners Organize NEO Premiere of Documentary about Hate Crimes, The Cleveland Movie Blog, January 12, 2015
  17. "Race Relations in Tulsa" (Press release). The University of Oklahoma College of Arts and Sciences. February 5, 2015. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  18. "Hate Crimes in the Heartland: Film Screening & Discussion" (Press release). Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice. March 10, 2015. Archived from the original on May 31, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  19. "Hate Crimes in the Heartland Screening and Media Studies Info Session" (Press release). The New School. April 8, 2015. Archived from the original on April 24, 2015. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Hate Crimes in the Heartland, The Academic Video Store, archived from the original on 2015-04-09, retrieved 2015-04-22
  21. "2014 Newark Black Film Festival Announces Paul Robeson Award Winners" (PDF) (Press release). Newark Museum. July 23, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 4, 2016. Retrieved April 22, 2015.
  22. "Faculty Film on Netflix". Emerson College Today. February 1, 2016. Archived from the original on March 9, 2016. Retrieved March 8, 2016.
  23. Before They Die: Official Website, archived from the original on 2015-04-15, retrieved 2019-04-25
  24. Brophy, Alfred (2002). Reconstructing Dreamland: The Tulsa Race Riot of 1921: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0195161038. Archived from the original on 2016-03-05. Retrieved 2017-08-31.

External links[edit]


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