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  • SDSU Human Rights Initiative and Hawaii Institute for Human Rights Film Screening: AWAKE

    Important notes:

    1. A live chat is available from 3:30 pm PT on Friday, September 11.
    2. Click on the three dots in the upper right of the chat window to pop it out into a separate window.
    3. The screening will start promptly at 4 pm PT with trailers. If the livestream feed does not appear within 30 seconds of start time, refresh your browser window.
    4. Questions? See FAQ for browser and device requirements, participating in chat, and troubleshooting or contact We recommend that you check out browser requirements in advance of the screening.
    5. Enjoy the show!

  • SDSU Human Rights Initiative and Hawai'i Institute for Human Rights: AWAKE

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    SDSU Human Rights Initiative and Hawai'i Institute for Human Rights presents a virtual film screening of AWAKE, A DREAM FROM STANDING ROCK on Friday, September 11 at 4 pm PT. Guests are welcome to participate in a live chat beginning at 3:30 pm PT and watch the livestream film screening beginning promptly at 4 pm PT.

    Screening Room opens with live chat: 3:30 pm PT
    Film Screening: 4 pm PT

    To watch the film and chat: Go to the Film Screening Room and enter the video password.  Note: The video password was provided by your hosts. Contact if you have questions.

    For information about AWAKE read the synopsis and watch the trailer.

    September 11, 2020 at 4pm

  • published MY COUNTRY NO MORE 2020-08-27 01:57:44 -0400



    MY COUNTRY NO MORE documents the oil boom in North Dakota that sets off a crisis in a rural community as residents are forced to confront the meaning of progress as they fight for a disappearing way of life.


    Between 2011 and 2016, drilling for oil in America reached an unprecedented peak, setting off a modern day gold rush in one of the most rural communities in the country: Trenton, North Dakota. Kalie Rider and her older brother Jed are both striving to rebuild farming in their family, having suffered the foreclosure of their parents' farm during the traumatic 1980s farm crisis.

    When their uncle Roger makes a decision to sell a piece of his land, it sets off a domino effect of industrialization in Trenton. Now, with the church being eyed for a diesel refinery, the community becomes riven by competing interests. While Jed faces the possibility of having to uproot his young family and move away, Kalie learns to organize and resist.

    Through its lyrical core, the film challenges the notion of "progress" as it questions the long term human consequences of short term approaches to land use, decisions that ultimately affect all Americans, rural and urban alike.

    70 minutes

    Directed by Rita Baghdadi, Jeremiah Hammerling
    Produced by Rita Baghdadi, Jeremiah Hammerling
    Executive Producer: Alexandra Johnes
    Co-producer: Jeff Consiglio
    Editors: Jeff Consiglio, Rita Baghdadi
    Cinematography: Jeremiah Hammerling, Rita Baghdadi
    Original Music: BC Campbell
    Executive Producer for ITVS: Sally Jo Fifer
    A Co-Production of Endless Eye LLC and Independent Television Service (ITVS) with funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB)

    "The human cost of our reliance on fossil fuels is measured not only in the looming horrors of climate change and threats to physical health from pollution, but also from the destruction of community and sense of place that comes as land is devoured by every new refinery and pipeline. MY COUNTRY NO MORE tells a deeply moving story...This compassionate film shows that along with the sadness of loss there is also hope as courageous people fight to protect their homes, families, and way of life."
    Richard York, Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies, University of Oregon, Co-author, The Ecological Rift: Capitalism's War on the Earth

    "MY COUNTRY NO MORE is a unique, inspiring look at a community's struggle to keep a grip on its valued way of life. But it is also an awakening tale of the perpetual exploitation of our land and people - from the demise of family farming at the hands of corporate agriculture to the pollution wrought by fossil fuel profiteers. This film is a text book on the injustice playing out in rural America, and how people come together to fight back."
    Wenonah Hauter, Executive Director, Food and Water Action, Author, Frackopoly: The Battle for the Future of Energy and the Environment

    "Our need for 'tough' energy transforms outlying locations such as Trenton, ND into the new frontline to determine how desperate we are to maintain our addiction to fossil fueled energy. The soul of the countryside is at stake with the advancement of fracking and the refineries and pipelines that it enables. MY COUNTRY NO MORE is a perceptive and passionate portrait of our energy frontier and the very human stories that are tangled with the difficult choices that face us all."
    Brian Black, Professor, History and Environmental Studies, Pennsylvania State University - Altoona, Author, Crude Reality: Petroleum in World History

    "Home. Land. Family. Friends. A little church on the prairie. MY COUNTRY NO MORE must be seen by any community where that organic mix is forced to confront oil, big oil. Should an energy blip permanently upset the attachments built through generations?"
    Dr. Anthony Ingraffea, Professor Emeritus of Engineering, Cornell University, Senior Fellow, Physicians, Scientists and Engineers for Healthy Energy

    "An absorbing, mannered modern range war."
    Michael Berkowitz, People's World

    "Hardly any people anywhere are opposed to progress until one day they see progress up close and notice the price tag...MY COUNTRY NO MORE will feel familiar to communities everywhere."
    David Hinckley, TV Worth Watching

    "Thoughtful...Personalizes serious issues...Despite concentrating on North Dakota, the program speaks to a wider audience concerned with rural issues, land ownership, energy resources, and corporate interests."
    Sue-Ellen Beauregard, Booklist

    "A wonderful documentary about issues that extend far beyond the oil patch of North Dakota. It describes the interpersonal and intrapersonal conflicts that emerge when the costs of development are not fully borne by developers, which creates 'winners' and' losers' among community residents. Under these circumstances, decisions can lead to change but not to true progress. MY COUNTRY NO MORE shows that patient, persistent, and respectful engagement by community residents can be helpful, if not always completely successful, in improving public decisions."
    Thomas Johnson, Professor Emeritus, Agricultural and Applied Economics, University of Missouri

    "Raw, intense, and beautiful filmed, MY COUNTRY NO MORE captures the highly personalized and heartbreaking costs of the shale oil boom on one rural community in America's heartland. At once a eulogy and a fierce protest, the film returns us to the beauty of human persistence - to the belief in homeland and community - that contrasts so sharply with this hurried world that sees empty spaces and vacant maps only as possibilities for economic development. Baghdadi's film reminds us that when we frack for oil we not only disturb the soil but drill into the memories, the histories, and the lives of the people attached to it."
    Bob Johnson, Chair of Social Sciences, Professor of History, National University, Author, Carbon Nation: Fossil Fuels in the Making of American Culture

    "This documentary is a good reminder that communities are made up of diverse people with diverse experiences and opinions, and that even small, rural communities can be torn apart by issues like an oil boom. I highly recommend this documentary for undergraduate and graduate courses that examine the discourses surrounding energy development, sustainable futures, and nature-society dependencies."
    Elyzabeth W. Engle, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies, McDaniel College

    "An excellent storytelling of how leaders in a small American community repeatedly held privileged corporate interests over those of their residents. It effectively highlights how these leaders' actions ravaged longstanding relationships and a sense of community in the area...I can imagine the story captured in MY COUNTRY NO MORE plays out in many other communities across the United States."
    Lazarus Adua, Assistant Professor of Sociology, The University of Utah

  • published TRE MAISON DASAN 2020-08-17 14:48:15 -0400



    TRE MAISON DASAN is an intimate portrait of three boys growing up, each with a parent in prison.


    TRE MAISON DASAN is an intimate portrait of three boys growing up, each with a parent in prison. Directly told through the child's perspective, the film is an exploration of relationships and separation, masculinity, and coming of age in America when a parent is behind bars.

    Tre, Maison and Dasan are three very different boys. Tre is a spirited 13-year-old who hides his emotions behind a mask of tough talk and hard edges. Maison is a bright eyed 11 year old with an encyclopedic mind and deep love for those around him. Dasan is a sensitive 6 year old with an incredible capacity for empathy and curiosity.

    Their parents are not incarcerated for the low-level offenses that have become infamous in conversations around mass incarceration, but their histories and relationships beg many questions about justice and the lasting and rippling effects of a system at large.

    94 minutes

    Directed by Denali Tiller
    Produced by Denali Tiller, Rebecca Stern, Craig Pilligan
    Writer: Denali Tiller
    Editor: Carlos Rojas Felice
    Cinematography: Jon Gourlay
    Composer: Gil Talmi
    Music: Tre Janson, Dasan Lopes, Maison Teixe
    A Hello World Production in association with Chicken and Egg Pictures, Shine Global, Sustainable Films and Pilgrim Media Group

    "This is an exceptional film that on its surface tells of the harmful effects that result from parental incarceration. However, at a deeper level, the film exposes the larger problem of mass incarceration and the racist structures that perpetuate and maintain the oppression of people of color in this country. An emotional and heartbreaking entry point to understanding how our systems have been designed to maintain inequality."
    Alan Dettlaff, Dean, Graduate College of Social Work, University of Houston

    "Powerful and gripping...By centering the voices of these young people, the film brings to life elements of humanity often overlooked when considering the very real impact of parental incarceration. As you witness each child navigate and confront unfamiliar life circumstances, you will feel the intensity of their pain and anger, understand the source of their confusion and conflict, and celebrate their joy and excitement. This documentary is a compelling chronicle of the unheard voices of the children left behind."
    Shenique S. Thomas, PhD, Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice Program, CUNY - Borough of Manhattan Community College

    "Heart-rending...Fascinating and deeply touching...A remarkable film, powerful in its emotional content and profound in its criticism of a system that sets the next generation up for failure...Nonfiction filmmaking doesn't get much better than this."
    Christopher Llewellyn Reed, Hammer to Nail

    "Engrossing...Potent, sometimes wrenchingly intimate...This feature directorial debut is an excellent non-fiction drama."
    Dennis Harvey, Variety

    "Powerful, incredibly moving...The stories of three boys of varying ages and races reveal intimate, painful conversations with their incarcerated fathers or formerly incarcerated mother. These children have remained largely invisible, as they face numerous, everyday challenges that most of us cannot fathom. This film serves as an excellent resource for educators and community organizers alike who bring these challenges to light as they seek to advocate for the youngest victims of mass incarceration."
    Sandra Joy, Professor of Sociology, Director of Youth Empowerment Program, Rowan University

    "Beautiful film...An excellent addition to any education, nursing, public health, public policy, or social work curriculum. Through the eyes of the namesake children, we feel the pain of incarceration-related parental separation and stigma. We hear Tre's father aptly say 'This isn't normal, man' during their visits, and yet parental incarceration has become the norm for millions of American children. The film will help prepare students to support affected families. It will also encourage dialogue on systems-level changes that will better serve families and communities than our current over-reliance on incarceration."
    Laurie Goshin, Associate Professor of Nursing, Hunter College - CUNY

    "Gripping...Offers a fresh and heartrending perspective...This picture opens our eyes to a social disruption that has been underexposed and that we all ignore at our peril."
    Stephen Farber, Hollywood Reporter

    "Poignant...The significance of maintaining the attachment relationship via prison visits and telephone calls was realistically and heartbreakingly apparent throughout the film. Tre Maison Dasan allows one to see incarceration through the eyes of children, incarcerated parents, and loving grandparents who often provide care when their sons and daughters are incarcerated. The film left me wondering what will happen to Tre? My hope is that he will be provided with the opportunity to maximize his potential and realize his true worth."
    Dr. Marian S. Harris, Professor of Social Work, University of Washington-Tacoma

    "Presents a vivid portrayal of the collateral consequences of mass incarceration. In telling the story of three boys impacted by parental incarceration, the film provides valuable perspective for anyone working in, or wanting to work in, the criminal justice field."
    Dr. Danielle Rousseau, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, Boston University

    "Gives a raw, in-depth look at the experiences of children with incarcerated parents. This documentary is a must-see to understand the extensive impacts of mass incarceration."
    Breanna Boppre, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice, Wichita State University

    "Capture[s] some deeply emotional moments."
    Andy Smith, Providence Journal

    "This is not a 'homeless to Harvard' story, it's about more typical children who are living with a tremendous stigma and whose futures may not be bright. And the story may be a more common occurrence than many of us would believe."
    Paul Parcellin, Film Threat

    "Engrossing and illuminating."
    Jay Seaver, eFilmCritic

    "A miracle of documentary empathy, shot as if each of the three young protagonists - all struggling with parental incarceration - had a camera embedded behind his eyes. The film doesn't preach about mass incarceration, but it's impossible to watch these children suffer and struggle and love and not ask oneself if their pain is necessary for our collective safety. If you work with children affected by parental incarceration - and if you work with children in any role at all - you need to watch this film."
    Nell Bernstein, Author, All Alone in the World: Children of the Incarcerated and Burning Down the House: The End of Juvenile Prison


  • published THE VOW FROM HIROSHIMA 2020-08-03 10:49:04 -0400



    THE VOW FROM HIROSHIMA is an intimate portrait of Setsuko Thurlow, a survivor of Hiroshima, who has devoted her life to ridding the world of nuclear weapons.


    THE VOW FROM HIROSHIMA is an intimate portrait of Setsuko Thurlow, a passionate, 85-year-old survivor of the atomic bomb in Hiroshima. Her moving story is told through the lens of her growing friendship with a second generation survivor, Mitchie Takeuchi.

    Setsuko was miraculously pulled out of a fiery building after the bomb was dropped and unable to save her other 27 classmates who were burned to death alive. That experience shaped her life forever and she endeavored to keep a pledge she made to her friends - that no one should ever again experience the same horrible fate.

    The film is a timely exploration of the global dangers of nuclear weapons and provides an insider's perspective as we see Setsuko campaign with ICAN (the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons). The culmination of Setsuko's decades of activism is her acceptance speech at the 2017 Nobel Peace Awards.

    2020 marks the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima.

    82 minutes
    SDH captions for the deaf and hard-of-hearing

    Directed by Susan Strickler
    Produced by Mitchie Takeuchi, Susan Strickler
    Writers: Mitchie Takeuchi, Susan Strickler, Renée Silverman
    Co-Producer/Editor: Judd Blaise
    Dir of Photography: Jennifer Hahn
    Original music: Dallas Crane

    "Narrated through the experiences of two resilient hibakusha women, The Vow from Hiroshima is a well-researched, poignant and thoughtful work on the humanitarian approach to nuclear weapons. It is a fascinating story of how geopolitics and civil society intersects to influence policy, and how change is possible despite all odds."
    Jayita Sarkar, Assistant Professor of International Relations, Boston University

    A beautiful narrative. The Vow from Hiroshima poignantly shows the suffering faced by survivors of nuclear weapons. In telling the stories of Setsuko Thurlow and Mitchie Takeuchi, it demonstrates the agency of hibakusha, to resist the pervasive silencing and stigma associated with the atomic bombs. It offers a clarion call for a world free of nuclear weapons and should be required viewing for students and activists interested in peace and security issues."
    Matthew Bolton, Associate Professor, Political Science, Director, International Disarmament Institute, Pace University

    "The Vow from Hiroshima
    is a powerful, deeply moving film, centered on Setsuko Thurlow's quest to rid the world of the nuclear terror that cruelly destroyed her classmates and members of her family in 1945. Determined that the crime should never be repeated, she played a vital role in informing the world about the horrors of nuclear war and in securing the adoption of the 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Teachers and community organizations will find it a valuable and inspiring educational resource."
    Lawrence Wittner, Professor of History Emeritus, SUNY - Albany, Author, Confronting the Bomb

    "Setsuko Thurlow is a true hero, an extraordinary figure in the decades-long effort to ban nuclear weapons. The Vow from Hiroshima tells her story with great compassion. At a time when the nuclear threat is greater than in any other year since the destruction of Hiroshima, the issues this film addresses could not be more timely and important."
    Eric Schlosser, journalist, author, "Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety"

  • published Join Cleveland Peace Action Online Film Screening 2020-07-31 19:41:05 -0400

    Join Cleveland Peace Action Online Film Screening

    Join the Cleveland Peace Action Online Film Screening!

    All Cleveland Peace Action guests sign up here for the online film screening of THE VOW FROM HIROSHIMA from August 7 at 12 am ET through August 10! Watch the film at your convenience!

    After you click the "SIGNUP" button, please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account. After you click the activation link, create your user password. Then, go to your Film Screening Room from August 7 through August 10, sign in, and enter the video password provided by Cleveland Peace Action.


    Sign up

  • published Join Cleveland Peace Action Virtual Film Screening 2020-07-31 19:24:34 -0400

    Join Cleveland Peace Action Virtual Film Screening

    Join the Cleveland Peace Action Virtual Film Screening!

    All Cleveland Peace Action guests sign up here for the virtual film screening of THE VOW FROM HIROSHIMA on August 6 at 7 pm ET!

    After you click the "SIGNUP" button, please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account. After you click the activation link, create your user password. Then, go to your Film Screening Room at 7 pm ET on August 6, and sign in.


    Sign up

  • published WE STILL LIVE HERE 2020-07-16 01:44:13 -0400



    WE STILL LIVE HERE tells the amazing story of the return of the Wampanoag language, a language that was silenced for more than a century.


    Celebrated every Thanksgiving as the Indians who saved the Pilgrims from starvation, and then largely forgotten, the Wampanoag Tribes of Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard are now saying loud and clear, and in their Native tongue, "As Nutayuneân," — We Still Live Here.

    The Wampanoag's ancestors ensured the survival of the English settlers known as the Pilgrims, and lived to regret it. Now a cultural revival is taking place. Spurred on by their celebrated linguist, Jessie Little Doe Baird, recent winner of a MacArthur `genius' award, the Wampanoag are bringing their language home.

    Like many Native American stories, this one begins with a vision. Years ago, Jessie began having recurring dreams: familiar-looking people from another time speaking in an incomprehensible language. These visions sent her on an odyssey that would uncover hundreds of documents written in Wampanoag, lead her to a Masters in Linguistics at MIT, and result in an unprecedented feat of language reclamation by her people. Jessie's daughter Mae is the first Native speaker of Wampanoag in a century.

    56 minutes

    Directed by Anne Makepeace
    Produced by Anne Makepeace Productions
    Assistant Producer: Jennifer Weston
    Editor: Mary Lampson and Anne Makepeace
    Cinematography: Stephen McCarthy and Allie Humenuk
    Animation: Ruth Lingford
    Music: Joel Goodman

    "Seeing WE STILL LIVE HERE is a moving and instructive experience. The film captures the emotion of the Wampanoag as they recover their language, which has deep significance for them. This success story of bringing a language back to life will inspire others attempting to revive or revitalize their heritage languages."
    Lyle Campbell, Founder of the Center for American Indian Languages, Professor of Linguistics, University of Utah, Author, Historical Linguistics: An Introduction

    "An exquisite portrait of an indigenous community creatively engaged in an inspired resurrection of their ancestral tongue...Children now learn to think and speak Wampanoag after seven generations of silence, thus breathing new life into their long-repressed culture. Beautifully crafted, this superb documentary is most highly recommended."
    Dr. Harald E.L. Prins, Professor of Anthropology, Kansas State University, Research Associate, Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, Author, From Indian Island to Omaha Beach: The Story of Charles Shay, Penobscot Indian War Hero

    "A wonderfully told, spirited story of the Wampanoag, whose language had not been spoken fluently for at least a century, rebuilding it — as well as culture and history — word by word from centuries-old written texts...This kind of revival has been taking place across Turtle Island (North America), but it is told here with special elegance, amazing animation, and a personal edge that will, at first, evoke tears of tragedy and rage for a people reduced nearly to nothing. The culture is then reborn in the happy faces of children speaking words that had been silent for generations."
    Bruce Johansen, Professor of Communications and Native American Studies, University of Nebraska, Author, Enduring Legacies: Native American Treaties and Contemporary Controversies

    "A beautiful film. The content is solid and is appropriate for any educational setting. It weaves a good story by focusing on Jessie Little Doe but also gives the broader picture of language revival efforts by the Wampanoag people...I highly recommend this film."
    Chad Thompson, Director, Three Rivers Language Center, Associate Professor, Department of English and Linguistics, Indiana University-Purdue University

    "According to the National Geographic Society's Enduring Voices Project by the year 2100 half of the world's some 7,000 language may no longer be spoken by anyone. Anne Makepeace's award-winning film WE STILL LIVE HERE (As Nutayuneân) chronicles Jessie Little Doe Baird and her colleagues using documents written long ago to revive their ancestral language. Their success gives hope to other Native peoples who have lost or are losing treasured ways of life and their precious languages."
    Dr. Jon Allan Reyhner, Professor of Bilingual Multicultural Education, Northern Arizona University, Author Honoring Our Heritage: Culturally Appropriate Approaches for Teaching Indigenous Students

    "I feel this film is vital for any tribe to view that is trying to save their language. We as the CLCPC would really like to gain tribal support and produce some new fluent speakers."
    Jonathan Poahway, Tribal Council Member, Comanche Nation of Oklahoma

    "WE STILL LIVE HERE is a stunning antidote to the false belief that Native Americans have disappeared...The film invokes deep scholarship and understanding of how languages are acquired and the realities of what it takes to revive a lost language. I recommend it to community groups worried about the survival of their own language, to those trying to rebuild theirs, linguists and educators who want to learn about the process, and anyone interested in the process of cultural change and adaptation. The content is also informative to people working within higher education — this is a model for how they must assist Native peoples to survive in undergraduate and graduate institutions. A terrific piece of work."
    Dr. Margaret D. LeCompte, Emeritus Professor of Education, University of Colorado at Boulder

    "I have never seen students react so positively to a film before. WE STILL LIVE HERE offers a moving portrayal of the historical and present day struggles that Native peoples face but gives us all hope for a better tomorrow. Through the courage of Jessie Little Doe Baird, filmmaker Anne Makepeace shows how change starts in unexpected ways. Not only do we see the intricate process of recreating a complex and little-known language, but we also come to understand the deep significance of that project. WE STILL LIVE HERE offers a ray of hope for the future, and is an in-depth and stirring glimpse into the very real world that outsiders too eagerly forget. I would highly recommend it to any college professor."
    Daniel Tortora, Assistant Professor of History, Colby College

    "Highly Recommended...WE STILL LIVE HERE is documentary filmmaking at its best; it is both informative and emotionally engaging as it weaves a narrative of immeasurable loss and inspiring rebirth...Viewers will come away with a basic overview of language reconstruction, empathy for the experiences of the Wampanoag Indians, and a more complete understanding of U.S. history. The film is particularly relevant for anthropology, linguistics, Native American studies, and U.S. History courses."
    Wendy Highby, University of Northern Colorado, Educational Media Reviews Online

    "A lovely tribute to threatened and vanishing cultures, proving that even if a culture or language has died it can be at least partially resurrected. It is a heartening tale of the will to survive among native peoples, as well as the contribution that professional linguists and anthropologists can make to this struggle...Suitable for high school classes and college courses in cultural anthropology, anthropology of language, anthropology of threatened/vanishing cultures, and Native American studies, as well as for general audiences."
    Jack David Eller, Community College of Denver, Anthropology Review Database

    "Why should you care about Wampanoag, or any extinct language, for that matter?...As Makepeace clearly shows in her film, a language can contribute significantly to mankind's collective knowledge."
    Nataly Kelly, Huffington Post

    "A fascinating meditation on the possibility of life after death — of language...What [the filmmaker] achieves — which very few have ever done — is the focus on native culture to the avoidance of exoticisization. This means that alongside the lush, green nature and woodwind sounds conventional of Native American representation, Jessie is also shown in her home, in the classroom, and in the library, as well as with other Wampanoags playing card-games in their mother-tongue."
    James Harvey-Davitt, University of Nottingham, 49th Parallel Journal

    "A beautiful film about a fascinating subject...Truly remarkable, and Makepeace captures it with gorgeous cinematography."
    Provincetown Magazine

    "This a film that should be shown to students studying languages - any of them - because it shows the power of language and the gift of learning one. I challenge you not to want to pick up a language class after seeing this film."
    Missy Gluckmann, Melibee Global Education Consulting

    "Extraordinary...With the language restoration comes the reinvigoration of culture, traditions, and roots...WE STILL LIVE HERE is a powerful and emotionally moving documentary, highly recommended for public, high school, and college library collections."
    The Midwest Book Review

    "For all that the linguistics and history are interesting and tragic, the film in many way shines because of what we see of the Wampanoag people. The film spends the most time with Jesse Littledoe Baird, who makes for an endearingly unlikely heroine - a middle-aged wife and mother whose passion leads her to do something truly extraordinary."
    Jay Seaver,

    "Language, heavy muscles in our backsides that hold us erect and opposable thumbs...these are the three elements, some anthropologists contend, that made human evolution possible. Of these three, spoken language most distinguishes us from other species. So what, then, is lost when a language dies? No less than cultural identity, tradition and subtle information about the environment in which that culture existed.""
    Kathryn Boughton, Litchfield County Times

    "Anne Makepeace's extraordinary film documents the origin and continued efforts of the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project. The indigenous Wampanoag Nation of southeastern Massachusetts is noted for aiding the Pilgrims after their arrival in the so-called 'New World' four centuries ago. That foreign invasion ultimately resulted in the rapid decline of their once-thriving culture. The tribes lost their lands and became subject to the laws of the dominant culture, and soon their language began to recede as the native-speaker population dwindled in the years following the American Revolution."
    Callista Burns, Boston Independent Film Festival

    "There is much to interest cultural anthropologists, ethnomusicologists, and folklorists in Makepeace's film...An excellent tool to use in lore and language, introduction to folklore, Native American folklore, linguistics, Native American history, and ethnic studies classes."
    Pauleena MacDougall, Journal of American Folklore

  • published A QUEST FOR MEANING 2020-07-15 14:17:33 -0400



    A QUEST FOR MEANING follows two childhood friends who take an impromptu road trip attempting to uncover the causes of our current global crisis and to discover a way to bring about change.

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    tells the story of Marc and Nathanaël, two childhood friends who take an impromptu road trip attempting to uncover the causes of our current global crisis and to discover a way to bring about change. The two friends invite us to share their quest as they meet with activists, biologists, philosophers, and custodians of ancient traditions. Equipped with nothing more than a tiny camera and a microphone they document some of the solutions that are laying the foundations for a sustainable world. This life-changing journey restores confidence in our ability to bring about change both within ourselves and in society.

    Among the people they talk to are Vandana Shiva, Trinh Xuan Thuan, Satish Kumar, Pierre Rabhi, Hervé Kempf, Bruce Lipton and Cassandra Vieten.

    87 minutes
    Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Italian, German, Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese, Russian, Japanese

    Directed by Nathanaël Coste, Marc de la Ménardière
    Produced by Kamea Meah Films
    Written and Edited by Nathanaël Coste, Marc de la Ménardière
    Music: Olivier Militon

    "Watch A QUEST FOR MEANING and learn to decolonize your mind by connecting with nature, food, dreams, love, joy and laughter. All of this feeds the internal shift to deep freedom – a shift necessary for us to help make the world better and hence have meaning in our lives."

    Randy Hayes, Founder, Rainforest Action Network, Director, Foundation Earth

    "This exuberant film documents a journey undertaken by two young people who hope to map a path away from consumptive individualism and towards creative, joyous, life-affirming community. I can't wait to show this 'map' to inquisitive students searching for course change and for wise advice on how to create a future that is plausible, desirable, and achievable!"
    Joni Adamson, Director, Environmental Humanities Initiative, Global Institute of Sustainability, Arizona State University

    "A breath of fresh air and optimism that recharges the spirit and soothes the soul."

    "With passion and exuberance, the two protagonists weave a powerful message...In the process they, and we, discover that the ideas and beliefs of the scientists, activists, philosophers, Shamans and ordinary citizens they interview all point to the same necessity. The imperative is that we humans create a new relationship with both the natural world and with each other...This film is a wonderful introduction to the issues of food sovereignty, food justice and indigenous rights in the context of a new economic and environmental paradigm."
    Polly Walker, MD, MPH, Senior Fellow, The Center for a Livable Future, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

    "This rollicking, coming-of-age travelogue captures those moments when we begin to see through the veil of modernist culture and recognize that other, more meaningful ways of living, feeling, and interacting with the wider web of life are possible. A QUEST FOR MEANING is the 'Let's Go' of environmental and spiritual awakening."
    Paul Wapner, Professor of Global Environmental Politics, American University, Co-editor, Global Environmental Politics: From Person to Planet

    "A marvelously encouraging and engaging film...As these young backpackers travel, they find deeper consciousness and spiritual unity with all Creation, in a new generation's innovative version of deep-rooted environmental sustainability traditions. The beautiful photography captures a striking series of rural and urban landscapes on four continents. A QUEST FOR MEANING will powerfully engage discussions among students, faith communities and the wider public."
    Dr. Richard Tucker, Adjunct Professor of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan

    "In this film, two young men as global citizens seek answers and possible solutions to a transition from unbridled consumerism. Their journey is engaging, as they travel the world and visit philosophers, spiritual leaders, environmental activists, and 'small is beautiful' operations...The journey should be an excellent stimulus to discussion."
    Tyler Volk, Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies, New York University, Author, Quarks to Culture: How We Came to Be

    "There is no guilt, no preaching, no alarmism. It's a work of maturity.”


  • published GREEN FIRE 2020-06-25 13:44:29 -0400



    GREEN FIRE explores the life and legacy of famed conservationist Aldo Leopold (A Sand County Almanac) and his land ethic philosophy. 







    GREEN FIRE explores the life and legacy of famed conservationist Aldo Leopold (A Sand County Almanac) and the many ways his land ethic philosophy lives on in the work of people and organizations all over the country today.  The film shares highlights from Leopold's life and extraordinary career, explaining how he shaped conservation and the modern environmental movement.  It also illustrates Leopold's continuing influence, exploring current projects that connect people and land at the local level.

    Meet urban children in Chicago learning about local foods and ecological restoration.  Meet ranchers in Arizona and New Mexico who maintain healthy landscapes by working on their own properties, and with the neighbors, in cooperative community conservation efforts. Meet wildlife biologists who are bringing threatened and endangered species, from cranes to Mexican wolves, back to the landscapes where they once thrived.  And learn how Leopold's vision of a community that cares about both people and land ties all of these modern conservation stories together, and offers inspiration and insight for the future.

    73 minutes

    Directed by Ann Dunsky, Steven Dunsky, David Steinke
    Produced by Aldo Leopold Foundation, U.S. Forest Service, Center for Humans and Nature
    Executive Producer: Buddy Huffaker
    Editor: Ann Dunsky
    Writer: Stephen Most
    Narrator/Guide: Curt Meine
    Voice of Aldo Leopold: Peter Coyote
    Original Score: Tom Disher

    "This beautiful, moving, and inspiring film reminds us that the man we most remember for the land ethic was also a father of wilderness protection, ecological restoration, and our whole consciousness about what he called our hardest task-the ability to live on a piece of land without spoiling it."
    Amory B. Lovins, Co-founder and Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute

    "GREEN FIRE...should be mandatory viewing for any student in a natural resource field, indeed for anyone who values nature, wilderness, and wildlife...This film is a fine tribute to Leopold's legacy...GREEN FIRE will contribute to people's appreciation of this amazing man and his role in the history of the conservation movement."
    Dr. Michael Hutchins, Executive Director/CEO, The Wildlife Society

    "Aldo Leopold was the most important American environmental thinker of the 20th century, and GREEN FIRE is a radiant portrait of Leopold's life and work. But its more important accomplishment is to suggest that Leopold may just be the most important environmental thinker for the 21st century as well."
    Paul S. Sutter, Associate Professor of History, University of Colorado-Boulder, Author, Driven Wild: How the Fight against Automobiles Launched the Modern Wilderness Movement

    "It takes viewers to the places that inspired, transformed, and nudged the author's doctrine into something that ties the concept of a land ethic to each of us. And into something that still offers hope and invites action."
    Pamela Biery, Sierra Club

  • published POWER TO HEAL 2020-05-27 23:56:36 -0400



    POWER TO HEAL is the untold story of how the twin struggles for racial justice and healthcare intersected: creating Medicare and desegregating thousands of hospitals at the same time.


    POWER TO HEAL tells a poignant chapter in the historic struggle to secure equal and adequate access to healthcare for all Americans. Central to the story is the tale of how a new national program, Medicare, was used to mount a dramatic, coordinated effort that desegregated thousands of hospitals across the country practically overnight.

    Before Medicare, disparities in access to hospital care were dramatic. Less than half the nation's hospitals served black and white patients equally, and in the South, 1/3 of hospitals would not admit African-Americans even for emergencies.

    Using the carrot of Medicare dollars, the federal government virtually ended the practice of racially segregating patients, doctors, medical staffs, blood supplies and linens. POWER TO HEAL illustrates how Movement leaders and grass-roots volunteers pressed and worked with the federal government to achieve a greater measure of justice and fairness for African-Americans.

    56 minutes

    Directed by Charles Burnett & Daniel Loewenthal
    Produced by Barbara Berney, Roberta Friedman, Daniel
    A film by Barbara Berney
    Editor: Daniel Loewenthal
    Writers: Anna Reid Jhirad, Leslie Clark
    Music: Stephen James Taylor
    Executive Producers: Tammy Robinson, Martin Dornbaum
    Narrator: Danny Glover
    A BLB Productions, LLC production

    "Having spent most of my career studying the civil rights movement, I assumed that I was well informed about its many dimensions. But watching POWER TO HEAL was a revelation to me. The film is a fascinating and instructive story about the long American struggle for social justice." Clayborne Carson, Professor of History, Founding Director, The Martin Luther King, Jr., Research and Education Institute, Stanford University

    "Shows both the destructive legacy of racism in American health care and the potential for collective action to redress these wrongs. We should be inspired by Medicare's role in desegregating our nation's hospitals, and should insist on further reform - like improved Medicare for all — to address the systemic racism that plagues patients of color to this day."
    Dr. Claudia Fegan, National Coordinator, Physicians for a National Health Program

    "A remarkable film...Essential viewing for anyone interested in the deeper conversations about health disparities and the pursuit of equality today."
    Michael Olender, Manager of Outreach and Advocacy, AARP North Carolina

    "This is a critical film that not only speaks to a time that has passed in our American history; it foreshadows to the present. Segregated healthcare still persists and is highly invisible in this country — except to the people who experience the ills of it."
    Aletha Maybank, Deputy Commissioner, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Director, Center for Health Equity

    "POWER TO HEAL has a critically important yet heretofore untold story to tell. And it does so in a way that is both painstakingly accurate and profoundly moving. The range of historical film footage and interviews is remarkable."
    Paula Braveman, Professor, Family and Community Medicine, Director, Center on Social Disparities in Health, University of California, San Francisco

    "POWER TO HEAL is long overdue. It unearths another painful past — racial segregation and discrimination in healthcare during Jim Crow, resulting in Blacks being denied basic medical care. This is a must see. It's riveting from start to finish."
    Michele Goodwin, Director, Center for Biotechnology and Global Health Policy, Professor of Law, University of California — Irvine

    "A powerful documentary. A moving story of the twin struggles for racial justice and health care, and how the two struggles intersect. This is an important film because the struggles for racial justice and access to health care continue."
    Alan Goodman, Professor of Biological Anthropology, Hampshire College, Past President, American Anthropological Association

    "An outstanding presentation...Brings this history to light. It is critical to view this film to see how a powerful movement brought needed change to American healthcare. This film should be seen by citizens everywhere and shown in every classroom."
    Janet Golden, Professor Emerita of History, Rutgers University — Camden, Author, Babies Made Us Modern: How Infants Brought America Into the Twentieth Century

    "A powerful film offering deep and accurate insight into our nation's history regarding racial segregation in health care delivery and health policy. A great tool to teach students, policy workers and those simply interested in gaining a better understanding of our country's sordid past regarding racism and health inequity. This film serves as an important reminder and lesson — of where we've come from and the power of grass-roots activism — for those of us in the fight to achieve health equity amidst the current day challenges in our society." Dr. Rachel Hardeman, Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Management, University of Minnesota School of Public Health

    "Many unsung heroes of health care and civil rights history appear on camera here for the first time, along with extensive archival footage on medical discrimination and the contentious passage of Medicare. The story it tells reminds us how far we have come, but also how far we have to go to end racial inequality in health care. The film should be of great interest to community groups that advocate for equal rights and health care for all, and will be a valuable teaching tool for university-level courses in civil rights and public health history." Beatrix Hoffman, Professor of History, Northern Illinois University, Author, Health Care for Some: Rights and Rationing in the United States since 1930

    "An excellent documentary on a lesser-known chapter in the American Civil Rights Movement: the desegregation of hospitals, and the heroes — both the famous and the more obscure — who made it happen. A must-see for anyone wanting to learn more about the history of race and medicine in America and how it began to change during this pivotal time."
    Dr. Damon Tweedy, MD, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Duke University School of Medicine, Author, Black Man in a White Coat: A Doctor's Reflections on Race and Medicine

    "What a wonderful film. This chronicle of the leadership of black physicians, nurses, and dentists with their white allies should be shown to each entering class in US health professional training programs. It is a glorious story of this enduring struggle for equality with an important victory along the way. POWER TO HEAL is full of lessons for today's students, their clinical colleagues, and professors as we try to cope with the current situation that would take us back to this cold dark past."
    Dr. Peter Orris, Professor and Chief of Service, Occupational and Environmental Medicine, University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System


  • published A BOLD PEACE 2020-05-23 15:50:54 -0400



    Almost 70 years ago Costa Rica abolished its army and committed itself to fostering a peaceful society. A BOLD PEACE juxtaposes the national policy of demilitarization with their investment in education, health, and the environment.




    In his famous "Cross of Iron" speech in 1953, President Eisenhower critiqued the military-industrial complex while asking, "Is there no other way the world may live?" In Costa Rica today, we glimpse another way to live.

    In 1948, Costa Rica dismantled their military establishment and intentionally cultivated security relationships with other nations through treaties, international laws, and international organizations. Free of the burden of military spending, they used the financial savings to invest in their people, creating strong public institutions including public higher education and universal health care. In short, Costa Ricans created a society committed to peace, solidarity, and international law. They have survived with safety and relative prosperity for nearly 70 years without a standing army.

    A BOLD PEACE details the events which shook the country to its foundations, culminating in the 1948 civil war and the decision to abolish the military. Over the decades, the Costa Rican model has survived several serious crises, but the current threats may be the most formidable of all.

    89 minutes

    Directed by Matthew Eddy, Michael Dreiling
    Director of Photography: Teal Greyhavens
    Executive Producer: Al Jubitz
    Narrator: Pedro Garcia-Caro
    Animation: Micah Bloom
    A Soul Force Media production in association with Spiral Pictures

    "One of the most enlightening films of our times."
    Leon Stuparich, Huffington Post

    "A fascinating documentary...Tells the remarkable story of war avoided, or transcended, again and again and again...By the film's end, this way emerges not simply as possible, not simply as a curiosity, but as the model for the future."
    Robert Koehler, Huffington Post

    "This is a story that every American with a political pulse should know."
    Veterans for Peace, Spokane, Washington

    "A Bold Peace should be given every possible means of support."
    David Swanson, Author of War Is a Lie

    "A Bold Peace captures the spirit of my father and the soul of my country."
    Christiana Figueres, former UN Climate Chief

    "This is a story that dares us to think differently and to imagine a better way. A Bold Peace seeks to re-frame possibilities for the future by challenging the western paternalistic notion of peace through strength. This insightful film is a must for those...who are interested in giving voice to alternative narratives."
    Dr. Greg Carroll, Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies, Salem State University

    "A Bold Peace clearly illuminates the linkages between anti-militarism, on the one hand, and social justice, mutual solidarity and democracy on the other. The film will prompt informed discussion about alternatives to both traditional conceptions of national security and neoliberal approaches to economic management. The film suggests that real power arises neither from geographic size nor the barrel of a gun, but from creative thinking about peace-making and conflict resolution."
    David Skidmore, Professor of Political Science, Director of Center for Global Citizenship, Director of Institute for Diplomacy and International Affairs, Drake University

    "Excellent film...Certain to stimulate discussion on policy choices regarding military spending and human security. It would be relevant to a wide range of classes in Latin American Studies, Comparative Foreign Policy, U.S. Foreign Policy, International Law, Peace Studies, Security Studies, and Policy Analysis. It would also be interesting to adult education and church and civic discussion groups especially in view of current policy debates in the United States."
    Dr. JoAnn Aviel, Professor of International Relations, San Francisco State University

    "For peace groups and the left, this is a film that would be of enormous value since it demonstrates the benefits that social democracy can deliver."
    Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist



  • published DAY ONE 2020-05-20 01:15:01 -0400



    In DAY ONE, traumatized Middle Eastern and African teen refugees are guided through a program of healing by devoted educators at a unique St. Louis public school for refugees only.




    DAY ONE follows a group of teenage refugees from war-torn countries who are enrolled at a unique public school for refugees and immigrants-only in St. Louis, MO, where they are guided through an inspirational program of education, healing and trauma intervention by devoted educators, some of whom have chosen to relocate to the inner city to support their students.

    Over the course of a year, we watch the kids progress through layers of grief and loss as they attend school, forge new friendships, and prepare to be mainstreamed into local public high schools. Their triumphs and tribulations all unfold with St. Louis as the backdrop: a rust-belt city that has taken the bold step of welcoming immigrants as a solution for their growing socio-economic problems.

    82 minutes

    Directed by Lori Miller
    Director of Photography: Brian O'Connell
    Editor: David Beerman
    Music: Tom Howe, Mike Reed
    Executive Producers: Kirt Eftekhar, Peter Tao
    Co-Producer: Brian O'Connell
    A 31 Films Production

    "This is a truly inspiring film, with lessons for all of us — not only about what kind of society we can be but also about how we can and should guide and instruct students. It is a story of resilience and hope, told with warmth and compassion. A must-see for schools, libraries, civic organizations, as well as school boards and other elected officials."
    David J. Harris, Managing Director, Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice, Harvard Law School

    "A film everyone should see...Reveals the incredible courage and determination these young people have with the difficult challenge of learning to navigate in a new school environment and a new culture. At our school, the personal histories and the personal triumphs of our first generation students are too often invisible. DAY ONE renders them visible."
    Brian Jennings, English Teacher, Bosnian Studies, Affton School District

    "DAY ONE humanizes the modern national discussion of refugees coming to the United States. We see the trial and tribulations of refugees, with the help of dedicated educators, adjusting to life in the heartland of the United States. The film is a heartwarming antidote to the poisonous attacks on refugees and immigrants. As the newcomers adjust to life in St. Louis, they inspire the community that they join."
    Kevin R. Johnson, Dean, UC Davis School of Law, Co-Editor, ImmigrationProf Blog, Co-Author, Opening the Floodgates? Why America Needs to Rethink Its Border and Immigration Laws

    "DAY ONE is proof that when a community comes together to educate, empower, and support our most vulnerable, then we become the best we can be. Thank you for this glimpse into a journey of struggle, hope, and perseverance for both the students and educators."
    Susan Werremeyer, Community Advocate, Welcome Neighbor St. Louis

    "An excellent tool to raise awareness and provide insight into the tumultuous first years of a refugee's placement in the U.S. By honing in on education, the film acquaints audience members with the unique perspectives of refugee children and school administrators, and it highlights the dedication and perseverance of both parties which facilitates the successful integration of newly arrived immigrants. DAY ONE is a prime example of storytelling as education, outreach, activism and advocacy and it is a wonderful film to promote understanding and tolerance."
    Ashley Faye, Development Director, Refugee Services of Texas

    "DAY ONE offers an insightful and moving look at the difficult journey refugees take in navigating the US educational system. This wonderful documentary takes us on an emotional roller-coaster ride with the new refugees as they sift through the excitement, grief and socioeconomic challenges of coming to a new land. Surrounded by hardworking and selfless individuals who provide a safe environment for learning and growth, the young refugees get a chance to start over and rebuild their shattered lives. This timely film provides an excellent springboard for classroom discussion; it allows students to see the world through the eyes of refugees and ask critical questions about our responsibilities as Americans to our fellow humans and migrants."
    Joshua Landis, Director, Center of Middle East Studies and Arabic Flagship Program, University of Oklahoma

    "The United States is at its best when it welcomes those who have been displaced by violence and strife, and St. Louis exemplifies this spirit in DAY ONE, creating a space for young refugees to learn and heal. The humanity of the students and teachers shines from the screen and renews our faith in the promise of America."
    Jorge Riopedre, President, Casa De Salud

    "Amazing...It was eye opening to see the lives of refugees in St. Louis, and learn about how current policies are affecting those lives. It was the first film I have watched where the audience immediately stood up to see how they could help, and hopefully it will inspire action in many communities to come."
    Matthew Padgett, Student, Washington University in St. Louis

    "A film for all. The film educates the community and teaches the audience the importance of a community, the importance of diversity and the importance of working together. Together we can do amazing things and build a better future. The film creates awareness of various issues in many fields that may affect educators, humanitarians, advocates and mental health advocates...DAY ONE was not only a heartfelt film but funny and educational."
    Itzel Iñiguez, Global Experiential Learning, University of Arizona

    "As a physician who has had the opportunity to take care of refugee children, this inspiring documentary provides a vivid, moving and heartwarming story on the struggles and successes of this group of children. It's an exceptionally important film as it depicts a group of dedicated members of a school and community providing numerous educational and social opportunities to these children who are eager to be part of this country."
    Dr. Blakeslee Noyes, MD, Professor and Interim Chair of Pediatrics, Saint Louis University, Director of Pulmonology, SSM Cardinal Glennon Children's Medical Center

    "An amazing film that shows how lives can be impacted to overcome trauma and tragic starts to life by compassionate educators and people. Shows the good in humanity at several levels."
    Scott E. Walker, President and CEO, Kingdom House

    "DAY ONE remind[s] me of the power of community and solidarity, especially as we strive to be of service to one another...[It] narrates and weaves together the hopes, challenges, aspirations, and social-cultural complexities of our immigrant and refugee sisters and brothers. The movie left me feeling grateful and hopeful."
    Dr. F. Javier Orozco, OFS, PhD, Executive Director, Human Dignity and Intercultural Affairs, Archdiocese of St. Louis

    "DAY ONE brings humanity back into the focus. You will be inspired by a story about newcomers through the eyes of children, their families, and their support systems in a city that (like many metropolitan areas) has declined over the past decades, trying to find its way back through welcoming immigration and other strategies. DAY ONE encourages all Americans to remember how they got here and to investigate their own American lineage and discover that their ancestors' story was not unlike the modern refugee story. DAY ONE is step one to inspiration and hope that cities like St. Louis can and must create a better place for all."
    Al Li, President, Asian American Chamber of Commerce of St. Louis

    "DAY ONE reminded me of my own adjustment as a young immigrant in the United States and the challenges my own family faced...By coming together and working together we can and do make a difference...I believe that our city and region becomes stronger when our community is diverse and inclusive."
    Gabriela Ramírez-Arellano, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan St. Louis

    "This film reminds us of the beginning hardships and struggles of being immigrants in this country...Their stories inspire us to be appreciative for our fortunate life and to be supportive for the struggling new refugees and new immigrants in this country."
    Lucy Burns, President, OCA St. Louis (An Asian American Advocacy Group)

    "A remarkable view of what a welcoming community does to serve the children of refugee and immigrant families. The dedication of the teachers, the vulnerability of the students, and the predicament of their young lives is so poignantly captured...It is a film that should be widely shared, especially now when fear of the 'Other' seems magnified throughout the country."
    Dr. Frances Levine, President and CEO, Missouri Historical Society

    "Educative and inspiring. [I hope] the message will reach every household in America to enlighten people of the story behind refugees."
    Geoffrey Soyiantet, President and Executive Director, Vitendo 4 Africa

    "The film would seem to suggest that 'our nation's moral moment is upon us.' Do we have the capacity to fiercely love in the way that honors the Beloved Community that Dr. Martin Luther King so vividly envisioned from his mountaintop? DAY ONE answers that question and many others."
    Brian W. Thomas, Assistant Head of School, Mary Institute and Saint Louis Country Day School

    "DAY ONE contains life lessons that everyone can relate to at some level, and as an educator of foreign languages, the cultural connections and stories that are told weave a tapestry of human experience that is accessible and interesting to my students. They understand and value their own heritage better by glimpsing through the lens of the brave refugees in the film."
    Patrick Huewe, Chair of World Languages, Mary Institute and Saint Louis Country Day School

    "A very powerful film. It is beautiful and yet challenging. It clearly illustrates the diversity of backgrounds in St. Louis and the complexities this richness gives our educational system. I think it will be well received by all age audiences and especially college students."
    Edward Macias, Provost Emeritus, Washington University in St. Louis

    "I am empowered and compelled by this movie to continue to advocate for equity in education for refugee students. It was such an honor to be a part of this phenomenal movie."
    Donnie Harris, Former Principal NCNAA, Director of Higher Education Consortium TRIO Educational Talent Search

    "A powerful learning experience for our school community...The film refreshed our understanding of the power of schools to make a difference in students' lives. [Day One] encourages generosity and compassion for refugees at a time when some of our leaders stoke self-interest and fear."
    Frank Kovarik, English Department Chair, Director of Equity and Inclusion, St. Louis University High School

    "A remarkable documentary. It should be viewed by all school districts in the country...Thank you for your work in helping people understand the English learners, not only in the in the city of St. Louis, but all students coming to a new country. Great work!"
    Julie Hahn, 2018 Counselor Advocate/Administrator of the Year, Ritenour School District

    "Viewing DAY ONE was both awe-inspiring and challenging...I am in awe of the brave students attending Nahed Chapman New American Academy, many of whom are simultaneously learning a new language and culture while also dealing with their traumatic past experiences. I am challenged to more intentionally teach my students about the importance of empathy and compassion, as well as to show them all that we have to learn from the diverse immigrant community in our own city."
    Christy Keating, Spanish Teacher, Parkway Central High School

    "The City of St. Louis has a long and strong history of welcoming immigrants and refugees. Because of this, it has strengthened the diversity and richness of our city and community, both culturally and economically. DAY ONE illustrates how St. Louis has and will continue to embrace those who come to our city to seek refuge and find a new life. It also shows how our community of institutions and individuals will be there to address the challenges, to support them and to be welcoming. We hope other cities and communities will be able to view Day One and empathize with the unique struggles some of our neighbors face on a daily basis."
    Mayor Lyda Krewson, City of St. Louis

    "DAY ONE inspires us to be welcoming to newcomers...All communities that aspire to grow through diversity can learn from this documentary."
    Betsy Cohen, Executive Director, St. Louis Mosaic Project

    "I thought immediately about the impact and new lens views that my undergraduate nursing students would have if I used the film in my Population Health course. The messaging on how to approach all persons in a trauma...would be an enormous lesson in planning and executing health literacy programs in diverse communities. The film also brought to life the extraordinary strength and resilience of the human spirit that cannot be found in a text book."
    Dr. Kathleen Thimsen, Assistant Professor, Goldfarb School of Nursing, Barnes Jewish College

    "Impactful...Tells a much-needed and important story especially now, during this time of anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim rhetoric. The school and children are located in St. Louis, Missouri, but their stories are relevant in Minneapolis, Boston, and anywhere else that refugees are resettling."
    Anna E. Crosslin, President and CEO, International Institute of St. Louis

    "DAY ONE does a great job capturing the struggles faced by many young students who have been resettled in the United States language barrier, educational access, coping with trauma, overcoming systemic obstacles, and searching for a sense of belonging. The film not only discusses the realities of the education system in Saint Louis but is a fantastic educational opportunity for all those in the audience." Shannon Elder, Development Manager, GirlForward (Austin)

    "The stories told are inspirational and even, at the end, triumphant. We see friendships made, school lessons learned and past traumas overcome...You can't help but be inspired by Day One. It's a story of truly good people doing truly good work." Daniel Neman, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

    "The audience for the screening I attended was the more diverse in race and age than other films I attended. The film offered insight into a lesser known St. Louis community while treating its members with respect and individuality."
    Christy Gray, Executive Director, Whitaker Foundation

    "DAY ONE not only takes us along on their educational journey; it offers a glimpse into the various conflicts across the globe that have caused their forced migration and gives us insights into their dedicated teachers' lives as well as St. Louis' class dynamics and racial history. Perfect for courses on forced migration and refugee resettlement as well as communities interested in learning about those issues, the film fills in important gaps in our general knowledge...This is a beautiful and engrossing film that covers so much without losing its focus."
    Dr. Diya Abdo, Associate Professor of English, Guilford College, Founder/Director, Every Campus A Refuge

    "DAY ONE brings us the nuanced human stories behind the broad category of 'refugees' and shows specifically how schools can provide a 'soft landing for refugees.' At a time when harsh policies and harsher rhetoric have halved the numbers of refugees finding homes in the U.S., this important film gives credence to the idea that schools can indeed set refugee children up to thrive in their new home country." Deborah Cunningham, Senior Program Director, Primary Source

    "The narrative feels like a soft quilt, with pieces collected from fragments of war-torn lives, new-found friendships, and brave efforts to turn deficits into assets from refugee camps to a newcomers' school in St. Louis, MO. This is a truly multi-layered collage of humanity against a hard backdrop of desperate immigration policies, bigotry and violence. The film highlights the hopes and fears shared by teachers and students in a transition high school in inner-city America as they re-write the present while untangling the threads of the past and the uncertainties of the future of young refugees. This film is a looked-for resource for educators trying to make sense of the dichotomies of nationalism and globalism within their own politically divided neighborhoods."
    Dr. Flavia Ramos-Mattoussi, Senior Research Associate, Learning Systems Institute, Florida State University

  • published ONE BIG HOME 2020-05-19 21:31:48 -0400



    ONE BIG HOME follows one carpenter's journey to understand the trend toward giant houses. When he feels complicit in wrecking the place he calls home, Thomas Bena takes off his tool belt and picks up a camera.




    Gentrification comes in many forms. On the tiny island of Martha's Vineyard, where presidents and celebrities vacation, trophy homes threaten to destroy the island's unique character.

    Twelve years in the making, ONE BIG HOME follows one carpenter's journey to understand the trend toward giant houses. When he feels complicit in wrecking the place he calls home, Thomas Bena takes off his tool belt and picks up a camera. Bumping up against angry homeowners and builders who look the other way, he works with his community and attempts to pass a new bylaw to limit house size.

    88 minutes

    Directed by Thomas Bena
    Produced by Thomas Bena, James Holland
    Executive Producers: Steve Bernier, Jeffrey Kusama-Hinte, Arleen McGlade, Thomas Bena
    Editors: James Holland, Liz Witham, Jim Cricchi
    Cinematography: Thomas Bena, Jeremy Mayhew, Liz Witham
    Story Advisor: Mollie Doyle
    Music Composed and Arranged by: Paul Brill
    Produced by Elephant in the Room Productions

    "Tells a fascinating story of conflicting visions of economic development on Martha's Vineyard, and by extension, the entire country...In doing so it focuses on the broader questions of how we ought to live our lives as human beings and consumers...The film shows that residents of any community can organize and educate one another, work with local planning boards and elected officials, and help to shift their neighborhoods and cities away from ill-planned growth and its environmental impacts and toward a far more sustainable future."
    Michael E. Kraft, Professor Emeritus, Political Science and Public and Environmental Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, co-author, Toward Sustainable Communities: Transition and Transformations in Environmental Policy

    "This is a perceptive and moving account of the tension between individual property rights and community values, the importance of a sense of place and the hard work necessary to achieve political change. Never simplistic and always nuanced, the film raises important issues for all of the US as the conspicuous consumption of the superrich impacts all our lives. Vital viewing for those concerned with zoning, affordable housing and the changing character of residential America."
    John Rennie Short, Professor of Public Policy, University of Maryland, Author, The Unequal City: Urban Resurgence, Displacement and the Making of Inequality in Global Cities

    "Engaging and provocative...Provides a contemporary example of how the values of individual consumption are pitted against the values of preserving community well-being and, ultimately, social and environmental sustainability. This film raises important and challenging questions about the contested nature and boundaries of community, the exercise of political agency, and the complexity of the multiple dilemmas associated with growth, development and the 'tragedy of the commons.'"
    Dr. Kai Schafft, Associate Professor, Education and Rural Sociology, Director, Center on Rural Education and Communities, Penn State University

    "When it comes to houses, size matters...Reveals the deep divisions caused by the clash between current residents and new ones who have the money to build their dream homes. For students and others, it demonstrates how citizen participation on limiting residential development can help preserve community character, raising key questions on the balance of private property rights with land use regulation."
    Terry Szold, Adjunct Professor of Land Use Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Principal, Community Planning Solutions

    "Really stands out in the current climate and will give...cinemagoers something refreshingly different to engage with...Intelligent and thoughtful."
    Jennie Kermode, Eye For Film

    "Offer[s] viewers insights from multiple perspectives and an inside look at how one community decided together in determining its future."
    Kimberley Mok, TreeHugger

    "When will a small community fight to protect its character? Provides an engrossing case from Martha's Vineyard where the residents of Chilmark observe and debate the construction of giant homes. Students, activists, and community leaders will be inspired to consider their role in their own communities as well as both what Americans consume and what Americans value."
    Brian Miller, Associate Professor of Sociology, Wheaton College

    "A must see for architects, planners and activists. It is fascinating - documenting one man's quest over a decade, working with his community to restrict gargantuan homes on Martha's Vineyard."
    Keith Moskow, FAIA, Moskow Linn Architects

    "An indictment of our culture of over-consumption, ONE BIG HOME tells a story of rural gentrification...With lessons for architects, urban planners, and community organizers, the documentary describes the struggle for the preservation of community character and a way of life that is grounded, simple, and both socially and environmentally sustainable."
    Shannon Van Zandt, Professor of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning, Professor of Residential Land Development, Texas A&M University

    "A thought-provoking documentary that requires introspection upon seeing it."
    Melissa Michaels, L'Etage Magazine

    "The documentary's success is that it includes the viewpoints of multiple parties — avoiding a one-sided bias...Bena's film becomes not so much an indictment of mega-mansions, but a rallying cry to local communities to have a voice in the conversation."
    Michael d'Estries, Mother Nature Network

    "An absorbing account of a community's effort to deal successfully with the issue of protecting character and environment while supporting the local economy."
    Town Topics Newspaper

    "Aside from spotlighting the essentialness of local government, the film draws compelling connections between property ownership and oft-unexamined ideals of liberty...As the film's title suggests, the biggest home is one all humans share — and it can only satisfy unstoppable appetites for so long."
    Alexander Castro, Newport Mercury

    "ONE BIG HOME is not just a film about trophy homes on Martha's Vineyard, it is about the power of community activism, it is about grassroots change, it is a rallying cry for communities all over the country with similar plights."
    Mount Desert Islander

    "Exposes the scale of the issue...The film makes fascinating watching for anyone interested in site-appropriate and socially sensitive home design and the importance of appropriate planning laws. It could serve as a timely warning to many concerned communities."
    Sanctuary: Modern Green Homes Magazine

    "As the time elapses, we watch Bena evolve...Real significant change was enacted after Bena became passionate about his outcome...That was the key. Negativity. Complaining...He was not going to make a significant impact unless he changed the scope of his passion from fighting against to fighting for something."
    Billy Manas, Elephant Journal

  • published Join Movie Night Fridays 2020-05-13 14:06:36 -0400

    Join Movie Night Fridays

    Join Movie Night Fridays!

    All UCSD AS Office of Environmental Justice Affairs guests sign up here!

    After you click the "SIGNUP" button, please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account. After you click the activation link, create your user password. Then, go to your Film Screening Room and sign in (if prompted).


    Sign up

  • published AFTER THE SPILL 2020-05-12 21:25:10 -0400



    AFTER THE SPILL introduces us to some of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill's most aggrieved victims as well as those who are desperately trying to save Louisiana's eroding coastline.

    Louisiana Water Stories Part II


    Ten years ago Hurricane Katrina devastated the coast of Louisiana. Five years later the Deepwater Horizon exploded and spilled more than 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, the worst ecologic disaster in North American history. Amazingly those aren't the worst things facing Louisiana's coastline today. It is that the state is fast disappearing through coastal erosion caused largely by oil and gas industry activity.

    A follow-up to the 2010 film SoLa: Louisiana Water Stories, this new film introduces us to some of the spill's most aggrieved victims as well as those who are desperately trying to save its coastline. Writer and historian John Barry who launched a suit against 97 oil and gas companies attempting to get them to pay their fair share for reparations caused by their explorations. Consultant and native son James Carville who manages to find some hope in new technologies that may save the coast. And Lt. Gen. Russell Honore, the man who saved New Orleans post-Katrina, whose new passion is for a Green Army he has recruited.

    Fishermen, scientists, politicians, environmentalists, and oil-rig workers document how the coast of Louisiana has changed. What really happened to all that oil? What about the dispersant used to push it beneath the surface? How has the spill impacted local economies as well as human health and the health of both marine life and the Gulf itself? How much resilience is left in the people and coastline?

    62 minutes

    Directed by Jon Bowermaster
    Produced by Oceans 8 Films
    Editor: Chris Cavanagh
    Writers: Jon Bowermaster, Chris Cavanagh
    Director of Photography: Brian C Miller Richard
    Narrator: Melissa Leo
    Original Music: Sonny Landreth

    "AFTER THE SPILL documents the enormous price that society pays for its addiction to oil. This price is not paid equally by everyone; the people of coastal Louisiana know this all too well...If you care about environmental justice, our seafood, our dependence on oil, and the quality of our air and water, you will find this film relevant, insightful, and infuriating."
    Daniel McCool, Professor of Political Science, University of Utah, Author of River Republic: The Fall and Rise of America's Rivers

    "As one who lived through Deepwater Horizon and has studied its effects, this film should be mandatory to all natural resource managers, federal regulatory agencies, and politicians who push for more offshore oil/gas development in areas in reach of sensitive wetland resources that drive economic and cultural prosperity and those coastal communities that depend on these vital coastal resources."
    Dr. Mark Peterson, Professor of Coastal Studies, University of Southern Mississippi, Co-author, Impacts of Oil Spill Disasters on Marine Habitats and Fisheries in North America

    "AFTER THE SPILL demonstrates how far reaching and damaging the effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster, as well as the natural gas and oil extraction industries, have been...If the on-going catastrophe in the Gulf seems distant and abstract, watching AFTER THE SPILL will bring the oil spill story 'home' for viewers and call them to take action."
    Dr. Lisa Eargle, Professor and Chair of Sociology, Francis Marion University, Co-editor, Black Beaches And Bayous: The BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Disaster

    "This documentary stars the people affected by not only the Deepwater Horizon oil spill but decades of natural and mad-made environmental degradation. AFTER THE SPILL is a lesson in Civics, Economics, History, and Anthropology demonstrating the imbalance in economic prosperity of our citizens and the continued degradation of the environment they live in."
    Christopher Green, Associate Professor of Renewable Natural Resources, Louisiana State University, Co-author, Impacts of Oil Spill Disasters on Marine Habitats and Fisheries in North America

  • published PLAY AGAIN 2020-05-12 14:26:09 -0400



    At a time when children play more behind screens than outside, PLAY AGAIN explores the changing balance between the virtual and natural worlds. Is our connection to nature disappearing down the digital rabbit hole?


     This emotionally moving and humorous documentary follows six teenagers who, like the "average American child," spend five to fifteen hours a day behind screens. PLAY AGAIN unplugs these teens and takes them on their first wilderness adventure - no electricity, no cell phone coverage, no virtual reality. Through the voices of children and leading experts, the film investigates the consequences of a childhood removed from nature and encourages action for a sustainable future.

    80 minutes

    Directed by Tonje Hessen Schei
    Produced by Meg Merrill
    Executive Producer: Lowan Stewart

    "It is a powerful film, revealing that we are allowing our young people to be so profoundly disconnected from the natural world and denying them the opportunity
    to fully develop their senses.

    Robin Mann, President, The Sierra Club

    "The film captures the helplessness of a generation hooked on virtual life,
    and the freedom the children taste when that cord is cut, even momentarily.

    Tobin Hack, Portland Tribune


  • published PLANETARY 2020-05-07 23:30:31 -0400



    PLANETARY is a provocative cinematic journey that explores our cosmic origins and our future as a species.



    We are in the midst of a global crisis of perspective. We have forgotten the undeniable truth that every living thing is connected.

    PLANETARY is a provocative and breathtaking wakeup call—a cross continental, cinematic journey, that explores our cosmic origins and our future as a species. It is a poetic and humbling reminder that now is the time to shift our perspective. PLANETARY asks us to rethink who we really are, to reconsider our relationship with ourselves, each other and the world around us—to remember that we are PLANETARY.

    PLANETARY features interviews with thirty renowned experts including astronauts Ron Garan and Mae Jemison, Bill McKibben, Barry Lopez, Janine Benyus, Peter Russell, Sabonfu Some, Brian Swimme, Mary Evelyn Tucker, Paul Hawken, Mona Polacea, National Geographic explorer Elizabeth Lindsey, and Head of the Tibetan Buddhist Kagyu school, the 17th Karma.

    84 minutes

    A Planetary Collective in association with Reconsider Film
    Directed by Guy Reid
    Produced by Steve Watts Kennedy, Christoph Ferstad, Guy Reid
    Co-directed by Steve Watts Kennedy
    Executive Producers: Paul Hawken, Stephen Apkon
    Written and Edited by Steve Watts Kennedy
    Director of Photography: Christoph Ferstad
    Music by Human Suits

    “For the first time, I not only saw the fragility of the planet, I felt it.”
    Erin Sharoni, Huffington Post Entertainment

    “This film moved me to tears more than once with its sheer beauty.”
    TD Rideout, The Mind Reels

    “A call to arms for worldwide action to save the Earth.”
    Mark Hanson, The Toronto Film Scene

    “Thought-provoking...moving and beautiful”
    Michael D'estries, Mother Nature Network

    "A most impressive logistical and aesthetic feat."
    Dennis Harvey, Variety

    "A fabulous film that could have long-reaching impact and continue generating interest over many years...A gift to the rising consciousness among those who see and feel themselves as planetary citizens and for those who could benefit from such a worldview. Words of insight and wisdom from the thinkers progress here like poignant epigrams, each of which could front entire chapters of discourse."
    Tyler Volk, Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies, New York University, Author, Quarks to Culture

    "This film is a very useful guide, leading...audiences through the steps needed to recognize what kind of transformation in our thinking is needed...For those who recall first seeing the image of the whole Earth from space, the film is deeply moving. For younger audiences the history of how this idea first dawned - simultaneously with Lovelock's Gaia hypothesis - will be just as moving and inspiring of hope."
    James Strick, Professor of Earth and Environment, Chair of the Program in Science, Technology and Society, Franklin and Marshall College

    "The environmental crisis is manifest across many dimensions of ecology and ideology, technology and the economy, culture, religion, and spirituality, and both social and personal psychology. This film suggests there is a hope; transformation is possible...Understanding that we are planetary is the heart of a new story, a story fit for the Anthropocene." Allen Thompson, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Oregon State University, Co-Editor, Ethical Adaptation to Climate Change

    "Here is a documentary about our eco-social crisis that foregoes reiterating the standard litany of woes. Instead it goes right to the heart of the matter: the rupture of our relationship with the Earth and with one another and the spiritual awakening needed to change our historical course."
    Eileen Crist, Associate Professor of Science and Technology in Society, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

    "A beautiful film for birthing a planetary consciousness. Many are seeking to move beyond anthropocentric thinking and this film helps point the way."
    John Grim, Co-Director and Co- Founder, Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology, Yale University

  • published JUST EAT IT 2020-05-07 23:22:20 -0400



    In JUST EAT IT, filmmakers and food lovers Jen and Grant dive into the issue of food waste from farm, through retail, all the way to the back of their own fridge.


    We all love food. As a society, we devour countless cooking shows, culinary magazines and foodie blogs. So how could we possibly be throwing nearly 50% of it in the trash?

    Filmmakers and food lovers Jen and Grant dive into the issue of waste from farm, through retail, all the way to the back of their own fridge. After catching a glimpse of the billions of dollars of good food that is tossed each year in North America, they pledge to quit grocery shopping cold turkey and survive only on foods that would otherwise be thrown away. In a nation where one in 10 people is food insecure, the images they capture of squandered groceries are both shocking and strangely compelling. But as Grant's addictive personality turns full tilt towards food rescue, the "thrill of the find" has unexpected consequences.

    Featuring interviews with TED lecturer, author and activist Tristram Stuart, acclaimed author Jonathan Bloom, and food/agriculture scientist Dana Gunders, JUST EAT IT looks at our systemic obsession with expiration dates, perfect produce and portion sizes, and reveals the core of this seemingly insignificant issue that is having devastating consequences around the globe. JUST EAT IT brings farmers, retailers, inspiring organizations, and consumers to the table in a cinematic story that is equal parts education and delicious entertainment.

    74 minutes

    Directed by Grant Baldwin
    Produced by Jenny Rustemeyer
    Executive Producer: Melanie Wood
    Director of Photography: Grant Baldwin
    Editor: Grant Baldwin
    Composer: Grant Baldwin
    Writers: Grant Baldwin, Jenny Rustemeyer
    A Peg Leg Films Production

    "Hugely entertaining...Will leave audiences gobsmacked...have drawn attention to an important, overlooked issue."
    Maggie Lee, Variety

    "Offers unsettling statistics – for example, the water required to produce one hamburger is the equivalent of a 90-minute shower – along with striking visuals – a field full of wasted celery stalks, a dumpster filled to the brim with containers of not-yet-expired hummus. After watching, you might just rethink going out to eat while those leftovers sit in the fridge another day."
    Science Magazine

    "Welcoming and highly accessible...This film adopts an experimental and inclusive tone that makes one feel empowered and inspired...It can only be hoped that this educational, entertaining, and potentially life-changing film will reach a wide audience, for if it does, a revolution in the way we eat surely is inevitable."
    Talia C., The Arts Guild

    "Just Eat It is funny, thought provoking, and is bound to steer the ship in the next wave of environmental consciousness, one best-before date at a time."
    Montana Cumming, Link Magazine



  • published HOW TO LET GO OF THE WORLD 2020-05-07 23:01:17 -0400



    In HOW TO LET GO OF THE WORLD, filmmaker Josh Fox travels to 12 countries on 6 continents to investigate climate change and uncover the answer to a difficult and fundamental question: what is it that climate change can't destroy?


    In HOW TO LET GO OF THE WORLD AND LOVE ALL THE THINGS CLIMATE CAN'T CHANGE, Oscar Nominated Director Josh Fox (GASLAND) continues his deeply personal style, investigating climate change - the greatest threat our world has ever known.

    Traveling to 12 countries on 6 continents, the film acknowledges that it may be too late to stop some of the worst consequences and asks, what is it that climate change can't destroy? What is so deep within us that no calamity can take it away?

    127 minutes

    A film by Josh Fox
    Written and directed by Josh Fox
    Produced by Deia Schlosberg and Josh Fox
    Edited by Annukka Liilja and Greg King
    Associate Producers: Diana Meservery, Deborah Wallace, and Robert Silverman
    Cinematography by Josh Fox, Deia Schlosberg, Alex Tyson, Steve Liptay, and Matt Sanchez
    For HBO Senior Producer Nancy Abraham
    For HBO Executive Producer Sheila Nevins
    Presented by International WOW Company in association with HBO Films

    LA Times

    "A riveting eye-opening feast."
    The Globe

    "Ups the ante on climate change...Tough to ignore."
    Ken Jaworoski, The New York Times

    "Infuriatingly moving...without a doubt one of the most engaging documentaries of the year."
    Joshua Brunsting, CriterionCast

    “This is a brave film that pulls no punches in exploring the impacts of climate change on human society. Combining a personal perspective with a global survey of community responses to the challenge, it is simultaneously a tragedy about climate change and a celebration of human potential. Like the director, you may find yourself both crying and dancing.”
    Susan Clayton, Professor of Psychology and Environmental Studies, College of Wooster

    "Excellent. Filmed from the perspectives of those most impacted, the poor and indigenous people around the world, HOW TO LET GO OF THE WORLD puts a human face on the consequences of climate change. Although the film highlights the daunting task of confronting the overexploitation of planetary resources and the increasing threats of climate change, it nevertheless maintains optimism by focusing on the human spirit and the courage of those willing to take action."
    Dr. Paul Mohai, Professor of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Michigan

    "A wide-ranging and ultimately joyous documentary about environmental activism...Makes for an energetic and positive story about actions real people can take to engage in this important issue."
    The Salt Lake City Tribune

    "Potent...the movie takes heart in communities that have found small-scale solutions."

    "This film will make you want to be the change...Unshakeable images!"
    Pamela Powell, Daily Journal

    "INSPIRING!…It motivated me to be a part of the growth of change."
    The Daily Buzz