Monday, October 20, 2008

Race to Execution

With recent and upcoming scheduled state killings where race may appear to be a major issue, here is a film to consider showing and discussing...and a strong issue we must come back to again and of "the line-up" from the film

About the Film
Through personal narratives and often unexpected results from research on race, justice and the media, Race to Execution follows the haunting stories of two death row inmates, exposing the role race plays in who lives and who dies at the hands of the state.

The film, produced and directed by Emmy Award-winner Rachel Lyon and co-produced by Jim Lopes, is a powerful documentary that enlarges the conversation regarding the death penalty, focusing attention to racial bias against black defendants that arise from unfair media coverage, race-of-jury and race-of-victim.

Race to Execution explores the deep and disturbing link between race and the death penalty in America. Following the stories of two Death Row inmates - Madison Hobley of Chicago, Illinois and Robert Tarver of Russell County, Alabama - the film interweaves their compelling personal stories together with groundbreaking scholarship.

Revealing how race infects our capital punishment system, Race to Execution invites dialogue into the larger community about this systemic crisis within our justice system.

Race to Execution reveals that once a victim's body is discovered, the race-of-the-victim and the accused deeply influence the legal process: from how a crime scene is investigated, to the deployment of police resources, to the interrogation and arrest of major suspects, to how media portrays the crime, and ultimately, jury selection and sentencing. Beyond DNA and beyond innocence, the shameful open secret of our capital punishment system is -- and always has been -- a matter of race.

View trailer, find information and purchase a copy of the film Here

The Race to Execution Outreach Project is an exciting new collaboration with the DePaul University Center for Justice in Capital Cases and Lioness Media Arts, Inc. that leverages the documentary "Race to Execution" to help build awareness and eradicate race bias in the criminal justice system and in the media.

Together, we are working with the film and filmmaker to reach new audiences and create new educational materials — including a brand new media module focused on racialized representation of minority communities in the news, entertainment television, movies and on the internet. Much of the activities culminate(d) in spring 2008, with several key partners presenting this work and related research at major conferences. DePaul University's Center for Justice in Capital Cases is the first of several (which hosted a major symposium on race and the death penalty in March 2008.)

Project objectives:

* Spark a critical analysis of the role of the media in disproportionate sentencing.
* Cultivate and engage new allies, particularly among communities of color, communities of faith and youth.
* Boost the work of those seeking to influence local, state and/or federal policies towards achieving a fairer justice system.
* Build support for a state-based Juror's Bill of Rights to address race discrimination in jury selection.

Project elements:

* A series of community screenings in partnership with organizations across the country dedicated to raising awareness about race bias in the criminal justice system, often generated within the media.
* Special presentations at conferences and other venues where stakeholders in criminal justice, law, civil rights, human rights, media studies and journalism convene.
* A brand new DVD module, Juror Number Six, with remarkable archival footage which focuses on the role of media representation in perpetuating race bias.
* Educational materials to help up-and-coming professionals in law and media to cultivate a set of "best practices" in presenting race and crime.

For more information about the campaign please contact

Or contact

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

'Race to Execution' is an amazing film for getting the discussion of the death penalty off the safe subject of innocence, onto the much more prevalent situation of "What do we do when the defendant is guilty. How do we be fair as a culture?"