Let My People Vote
! VOTER SUPPRESSION IS REAL IN AMERICA !
Voter suppression is one of the painful legacies of hundreds of years of systemic racism. And, unless the story is told, it’s not going away.
In 2016, our film team set out to document the first presidential election since a 2013 Supreme Court ruling gutted Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Our cameras caught real-time voter suppression at the polls. And, it's heartbreaking.
Dr. King would not be pleased.
Thanks to Jim Crow laws from the 1800’s, Florida bans citizens convicted of crimes (including frivolous felonies) from voting for life, in spite of completing all sentencing requirements.
Almost 1.5 million Floridians have therefore been silenced and disenfranchised. (That's 1 out of 10 adults in a key battleground state!)
"LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" is the story of one man, fighting to get voting rights back for all.
In this award-winning short documentary, we follow the work of grass-roots activist, Desmond Meade
Desmond’s mission? To assist people in exercising their democratic right to a vote - something our “forefathers marched and died for.”
"LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" features an emotional roller-coaster of a storyline:
Act 1 begins as an upbeat day of faith in our democratic process during the 2016 presidential election.
Act 2 ends with Desmond's depressing realization - Jim Crow is not dead in Florida.
However, all that changes in Act 3!
In the 2018 Midterm elections, Jim Crow's control over the Florida polls was voted out.
On November 6th, Florida voters passed Amendment 4, restoring voting right to almost 1.5 million U.S. citizens.
It was the largest expansion of voting rights since the 26th Amendment lowered the voting age to 18 years old in 1971.
"LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" is a true story positive of social change, where grass-roots civic actions can, and do, victoriously succeed!
"LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" features DESMOND MEADE:
Desmond Meade is a "returned citizen" (former felon) who overcame many obstacles - including addiction and homelessness - to eventually earn a degree from Florida International University's College of Law.
Although he turned his life around many years ago - Meade's right to vote has not been restored, and he is among the 1.5 million citizens barred from voting in Florida, for life.
However, disenfranchisement from an old Jim Crow law did not stop Meade from participating in the democratic process!
As president of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition (FRRC), Meade and his team secured more than one million petition signatures to place Amendment 4, the Second Chances Voting Restoration Amendment, on the Florida ballot in the 2018 MIDTERM ELECTION.
With the help of John Legend, Common, Jesse Williams, and thousands of volunteers - THEY WON!
Gilda tells tales of underdog heroes.
She helped produce and direct Oprah Winfrey's ABC primetime special, "Building A Dream,"the acclaimed documentary on The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy in South Africa.
Inspired after meeting Nelson Mandela in South Africa, and filming in his prison cell of 27 years, Gilda founded VUSI Filmworks with a focus on filmmaking for positive social change.
ACCOLADES for "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE":
The current version of the award-winning "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" was featured on NBC's MEET THE PRESS Film Festival website past October. We were honored to be chosen for this exclusive opportunity by Chuck Todd, in partnership the American Film Institute.
Additional honors include:
2018 Winner at Florida Film Festival
2018 Winner at Downtown L.A. Film Festival
2018 Winner at Bronze Lens Atlanta Film Festival
The St. Louis Film Festival is featured "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" in their Human Rights Spotlight program at Washington University.
LEVI STRAUSS FOUNDATION & Google, in partnership with LIVE FREE, hosted screenings at their corporate headquarters - with Ben and Jerry’s donating in-kind sponsorship of iced treats to viewers.
"LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" was featured on KPFK Pacifica Radio’s The Lawyer’s Guild.
The composer Moby, and the rock group, United Pursuit ("Break Every Chain"), contributed to the "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" soundtrack.
Ari Berman, the critically acclaimed author of Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America, and award-wining of journalist for Mother Jones magazine, writes praise: “Let My People Vote is a must-watch story about voter suppression in Florida and a powerful look at one of the most important fights for democracy today.”
WINNING FESTIVALS IS SUPER COOL, but,
WE NEED TO EDIT A NEW ENDING AFTER 2018’s MIDTERM ELECTION VICTORY!
On the November 6th, a super-majority of Floridians voted to pass Desmond’s Amendment 4, and restored voting rights to the 1.5 million dis-enfranchised citizens in the state.
It was a glorious testament to grass-roots civic action.
Please DONATE to help us produce this new victorious ending to our current award-winning short film.
For your contribution, you name will be added to the "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" credit roll as a "Special Thank You."
Your generosity specifically funds editing our new ending:
- Salaries for Editor, Sound Mixer, Color Correction - and animated Graphic Credit Roll (with your thank you credit)
- Edit bay rental, and hard drives with loads of space for media management (the boring necessities).
In addition, YOUR DONATION helps sponsor screening at campuses nationwide:
University of Florida, University of Central Florida, CUNY, Tennessee State, Columbia U., Harvard U., Williams College, etc.
As an activist based film-project - if you want change at the top of our government - please consider this fact ...
Empowering almost 1.5 million Floridians with voting rights will be a game changer in the 2020 Electoral College.
And, by putting “a face” on real-time voter suppression, "LET MY PEOPLE VOTE" has motivated and encouraged voter turnout like nothing else.
JOIN OUR WINNING FILM'S TEAM & BE PART OF HISTORY!
THANK YOU for believing in us as film-makers,
and supporting every adult citizen's RIGHT TO VOTE!
In partnership with: