Marvel’s latest movie, Black Panther, is soaring to record-breaking heights. The largely-black film has tapped into the cultural zeitgeist. People crave diversity, fears that modern audiences wouldn’t respond well to a film carried by non-white actors were unfounded.
Activists are using the energy generated by the movie to inspire people to vote. Members of the Electoral Justice Project, a group with close ties to the Black Lives Matter movement, launched a nationwide voter registration drive at Black Panther screenings. They hope to inspire black voters to become more engaged with their communities.
Thank you all so much for sharing #WakandaTheVote. More than 50 cities are registered to host drives at #BlackPanther premieres. This is how we engage early! We will win. #WakandaForever https://t.co/bCNEE7I3cN
— Kayla Reed (@iKaylaReed) February 17, 2018
Dubbed #WakandaTheVote, the movement took off over the weekend. Wakanda is the name of the fictional country where the Black Panther, or King T’Challa, resides.
“This weekend we wanted to meet our people in Wakanda,” group members explained. “We know that for some it’s a superhero world, but we know that the world we deserve is still waiting to be built — and we want to build it.”
The project won’t die when the movie leaves theaters. Organizers hope to make a difference in the upcoming 2018 midterm elections.
“Over 1,000 people joined our launch call, and we’ve been building out an exciting campaign ever since. We will be engaged in actions all over the country to educate and motivate black voters as well as launching an intensive campaign manager institute this spring called the Electoral Justice League. We intend to have 1,000s of conversations with black people…”
Increased political engagement is a good thing no matter what’s driving it. It could be argued that activists would be more effective if they tried to mobilize all unengaged voters instead of focusing on specific minority subsets, but it’s hard to say that they’re doing something wrong.
Voter registration drives at the movie theater are a good thing for society.
(Source: The Hill)