“Soldiers Without Swords” Jerrica Sanchez

4 Mar

This documentary showed a part of American history that many times is passed over. We’ve all taken numerous history courses in school, but I personally have never been exposed to the powerful influence the Black newspapers had on the civil rights movement. It was a beautiful story, showing how a people struggled to keep these small newspapers open, for the sole purpose of bettering their communities and educating their own people about the truth. They chose to present positive news to counteract the negative portrayal of blacks in the mainstream white newspapers. Here we see that a form of non sanctioned media which stands it’s ground against mainstream media, can be just as powerful in bringing about change.

There was a point in the documentary when one of the interviewees said that the people at that time really knew little about the circumstances and happenings in their own communities. I feel like this resonates powerfully today in minority communities. I feel as if music can be used as a modern form of expression for these communities. Erykah Badu said in one of her songs “hip hop is bigger than the government” and I see this idea as one that threatens the mainstream power. Music is universal, it’s distributed and listened to all over the world by all kinds of people, and if one analyzes the current Hip Hop industry you are bound to notice there are less intellectual rappers being played on the radio. This is one form of media which can be used to expose the realities of communities today, and empower minorities to look beyond their circumstances and find a new truth.

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