Story by Jerell King. Photo from www.thedailybeast.com
NOV. 9, 2016: On September 19, 2016 all of Friendship’s high school campuses got together at the Community Theater to watch the amazing film, “The Birth of A Nation.” “The Birth of A Nation” tells the story of Nat Turner, who led one of the greatest and bloodiest slave rebellions in history. Not only was the film a story of violence, it was also a story of love, perseverance, hope, and family. This film would not have been created without Nate Parker, the producer of this film.
Nate Parker did not want to make this movie just for the money, he really wanted to share the amazing story of Nat Turner. Nate Parker actually grew up in the same area where Nat Turner’s rebellion took place. He didn’t get the chance to learn about Nat Turner in school like some students nowadays, so he had to teach himself. Nate Parker made this film for everyone, especially African-American youth, to show the inspirational story of Nat Turner and to show us the resilience that we all have in our blood.
Students who watched the film also engaged in a very deep discussion with some of Friendship’s staff, and people from the Nate Parker foundation. Everyone compared the emotional events of the film to our society today. For example, we compared the abuse from the white antagonists towards the slaves to police brutality and its effects today. We also talked about what we will do to break the chains surrounding our nation. Surprisingly, there were a lot of similarities to the effects of slavery and our lives today.
This movie has changed my mindset for the better. This movie showed me that it takes a strong man to fight for his freedom, even though a life is at stake. This movie was very powerful and inspiring to me and the many other students who got the special opportunity to see this life-changing film. I hope everyone who saw this film will use this experience as a guide to show that they can start a movement that will change our nation so we can make the title “The Land of The Free” actually mean something.
Jerell King is a 9th grade scholar at Friendship Tech Prep Academy.