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<nettime> Statement -- Eyes on the Prize
Art McGee on Tue, 8 Feb 2005 09:42:45 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> Statement -- Eyes on the Prize




---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Sat, 05 Feb 2005 19:18:08 -0600
From: Bruce Hartford <bruceh {AT} wwwriters.com>
Subject: Statement -- Eyes on the Prize

In meeting assembled, Bay Area Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement 
adopted the following statment of support for the protest screenings of 
"Eyes on the Prize" being organized by Downhill Battle 
(http://www.downhillbattle.org/eyes/). We will host a solidarity screening 
on February 8 in Berkeley, CA. The statement will be forwarded to Downhill 
Battle, posted on "Civil Rights Movement Veterans" website 
(http://www.crmvet.org), and distributed to the press.

Movement veterans who wish to add their names to this statement are 
encouraged to do so by sending messages to webspinner {AT} crmvet.org .

Bruce Hartford
Webspinner, Civil Rights Movement Veterans
http://www.crmvet.org

---

            Bay Area Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement
                    Statement: "Eyes on the Prize"
                          February 8, 2005

We who are veterans of the Southern Freedom Movement of the 1960s support 
efforts to open the corporate copyright vaults and allow people to view 
"Eyes on the Prize."

We strongly defend the original purpose of copyright which was to protect 
creators, -- artists, composers, performers, photographers, writers, and 
others, -- from theft of their work, and to ensure that creators could 
make a living from their craft. But today media conglomerates have 
imprisoned the copyrights that once belonged to the creators, seizing the 
income that rightfully belongs to those who did the work, denying access 
to those who cannot afford to pay their exorbitant fees, and sequestering 
information that runs counter to their corporate political agendas.

Information, -- and particularly history, -- is as much a necessity of 
intellectual and economic life as food is of biologic life. Not only is it 
morally wrong to deny people the necessities of life, it's impractical 
because when people cannot afford to buy food they steal it. As citizens 
we know that without full access by all to multiple sources of news and 
information, democracy itself becomes a myth. And as Toni Morrison told us 
in 1986, "Access to knowledge is the superb, the supreme act of truly 
great civilizations."

To us, knowledge is a human right every bit as important as the right to 
vote and the right be treated with courtesy and respect. Therefore, we do 
not believe that reading, or viewing, or listening is, or should ever 
become, a crime. Nor should access to information become a luxury sold 
only to the wealthy.

The events, images, narratives, and songs of "Eyes on the Prize" were not 
written, created, or performed by the corporations who now have the 
copyrights under their lock and key. It was those who gave their lives in 
the struggle, the heroic children of Birmingham, the courageous citizens 
of Mississippi, the Selma marchers, the school integrators, the sit-ins 
and Freedom Riders, and the people of a thousand colleges, towns, and 
hamlets across the South who created the Civil Rights Movement and we have 
a right to have our stories told.

Therefore, in the spirit of Southern Freedom Movement, we who once defied 
the laws and customs that denied people of color their human rights and 
dignity, we whose faces are seen in "Eyes on the Prize," we who helped 
produce it, tonight defy the media giants who have buried our story in 
their vaults by publicly sharing episodes of this forbidden knowledge with 
all who wish to see it.

            Bay Area Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement
                      http://www.crmvet.org

Chude (Pam Parker) Allen
Hardy Frye
Miriam Cohen Glickman
Bruce Hartford
Don Jelinek
Wazir (Willie) Peakock
Jimmy Rogers
Jean Wiley

###

Art McGee
Principal Consultant
Virtual Identity
Communications+Media+Technology
1-510-967-9381
artmcgee {AT} cyberspace.org





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