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It was a full house on February 1 in the city council auditorium as the Friends of the Takoma Park Maryland Library and the City of Takoma Park’s “We Are Takoma” cultural series hosted a film screening of Robin Hamilton’s “This Little Light of Mine: The Legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer.” The film screening was followed by a discussion with Hamilton, an Emmy Award-winning broadcast journalist, and José Morales, Community Engagement and Projects Director for the National Democratic Redistricting Committee. The discussion was moderated by Andrew Penn.

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Fannie Lou Hamer was a middle-aged sharecropper living in poverty in Mississippi before she rose up to become a pivotal civil rights activist of the 1960s. She helped organize the 1964 Freedom Summer African American voter registration drive, working with the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee. She also helped found the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, which challenged the state’s all-white delegation to the 1964 Democratic convention.

We learned of the struggle and violence experienced by Ms. Hamer as she fought for voting rights for African Americans in Mississippi in the 1960s. In the discussion following the film, we were reminded that the struggle for voting rights continues, and how so many forces conspire to keep people from voting to this day.

Where can you learn more?

Head on over to the website of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee to find out how you can get involved.

Learn more about the film at fannielou.com, and you can find information about the filmmaker Robin Hamilton on the website of ARound Robin Production Company.

 

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