Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Message from Commissioner Silas Grant - Community Film Screening and Discussion

Do the Right Thing.
spike lee

This Friday, April 1st
Turkey Thcket Recreation Center
1100 Michigan Ave, NE

- As a follow-up to the "March for Peace" that took place on 2/12/11, Tony Lewis, Jr. and I will be hosting a viewing of the film "Do the Right Thing":

Please join us on Friday April 1, 2011 at Turkey Thicket Recreation Center (1100 Michigan Ave, NE) at 7pm as we view the film followed by a provocative discussion about diversity in D.C.

Do the Right Thing” is a concept that is derived from the 1989 Spike Lee film which placed a spotlight on gentrification and diversity in a big city. The District of Columbia has achieved a high level of diversity. From diversity in the areas of age and generation to diversity in the areas of culture and ethnicity, this city has truly become a “melting pot”. While we have achieved this diversity, accepting and respecting diversity is more important.

Segments of the city’s population congregate and interact based on similarities. Religion, economic class level, education and race provide platforms for those who are alike to come together. However, those same elements cause barriers for those who are considered different in these areas. “Do the Right Thing” causes a provocative conversation around diversity to take place. The goal of this event is to have all District citizens understand that we are more alike than we are different. Also, we share resources and common space and the need for coexistence with harmony is higher than ever.

The film “Do the Right Thing” was shot over 20 years ago at a time when New York City was experiencing gentrification, diversity and the ups and downs of sensitivity around these issues as well. The District of Columbia is now facing these same issues in 2011. At some point, the “elephant in the room” has to be addressed. The viewing of “Do the Right Thing” amongst a diverse crowd along with a conversation following will begin the process of accepting and respecting diversity.

It is our hope that you will be able to attend and take part in this discussion.


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