​Post submitted by Noël Gordon, former HRC Senior Program Specialist for HIV Prevention and Health Equity.

Last weekend, HRC teamed up with the Raben Group and the Brennan Center for Justice to screen Brother Outsider, a feature-length documentary of civil rights icon Bayard Rustin. Rustin was one of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s most trusted advisers and chief architect of the 1963 March on Washington.

Audience members gathered in HRC’s Equality Forum to watch the documentary and participate in a moderated panel discussion with filmmaker Bennett Singer and HRC Director of Youth & Campus Outreach Sultan Shakir. The purpose of the event was to commemorate the life and legacy of Bayard Rustin – a civil rights activist whose story has largely gone untold in history books across the country.

“It was truly moving to see the life of Bayard Rustin portrayed in a way that honored all of his identities: from an organizer of immense talent, to a passionate advocate of non-violence, to a mentor, to a man who sought companionship from other men,” said Shakir. “Too often we’re asked to only be part of ourselves, and this film did an artful job of depicting the entirety and the wholeness of one of the greatest leaders of the civil rights movements.”

The event was held as part of the inaugural March on Washington Film Festival, a series of film screenings meant to bring together the modern civil rights community and commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. For more information, visit www.marchonwashingtonfilmfestival.org. Brother Outsider is currently available on Netflix.

Photos (c) Kevin Allen/ HRC

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