#WakandatheVote: Black women time voter education and registration project with Black Panther screenings in U.S.
Team Black Panther is filled with winners. The riveting storyline, beautiful cinematography, complex African characters and African American director, Ryan Coogler, undoubtedly created a cultural and financial success. Having raked in about $192 million during its three-day debut, the movie is also deemed the fifth biggest film opener of all time.
As many of us bask in, celebrate and dissect all things Black Panther, Blavity reported about Black women who timed a political mission called #WakandaTheVote with Black Panther screenings throughout the United States. Last October, Kayla Reed, Jessica Byrd and Rukia Lumumba kicked off their Electoral Justice Project (EJP), a Movement for Black Lives project focused on advancing Black rights through increased political education and voter registration to combat issues like gerrymandering and disparate policing.
“The Movement for Black Lives is an ecosystem of black leaders and organizations fighting every single day for the healthy and happy lives of Black folks,” Byrd and Reed told Blavity. “We are effective because we meet our communities where they are, whether that’s in the streets, at the city council meeting, or in the movie theater.
“This weekend we wanted to meet our people in Wakanda,” they said. “We know that for some it’s a superhero world, but we know that the world we deserve is still waiting to be built — and we want to build it! This upcoming spring and November 2018 midterm elections are an important step in building that new world, and we want to take every opportunity to engage our communities in the conversation of electoral justice. We will be registering people to vote at movie theaters across the country so that we can #wakandathevote at the ballot box.”
The Black women’s political brainchild will be transformative instead of merely transactional, they said.