BlackBox: Matt Watches MLK/FBI

Date night and we are watching MLK/FBI. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, that “one day little black boys and girls will be holding hands with little white boys and girls.” Well we aren’t so little anymore but my date/movie curator and I are living it. She’s a blonde, light brown eyed white woman. I feel slightly ashamed that I didn’t know about this movie before her, but I get over that and prepare to watch some potentially racially charged history. 

The film covers a side of MLK’s life that I hadn’t often heard or been taught about. The worn exhausted look on his face in some scenes of this documentary weren’t images I was familiar with. And the look not from a source I’d suspect. We know the horrors of dogs attacking, church bombings, crosses burning on front lawns, and water hoses pushing men and women of all ages down the street like refuse. However, the soul draining torture of constant surveilance, recording your every move and word, in hopes to use your human nature against you presents a different kind stress.  That is the kind that creates this look you’ll see on MLK in this film. When all other attempts to find fault in this great leader failed, they went for the thing that had many lynched, burned at the stake, stoned and imprisoned, sexuality. 

The film gave me a new perspective on the civil rights movement leader, and his humanity. I was able to move though the racial identity I came into the film with, feeling separate from my movie night partner, and felt more connected in the recognition of our larger fight, to have freedom around our human nature.

Watch it here:

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