July 24, 2014 at 12:42 pm EDT | by Steve Charing
New doc examines marriage fight, black church
The New Black, gay news, Washington Blade

‘The New Black’ is a documentary by Yoruba Richen that tells the story of how the African-American community is grappling with gay rights issues.

Equality Maryland is sponsoring the screening of “The New Black,” which will take place on July 30 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Chase Brexton Building Community Meeting Room, 1111 N. Charles St. in Baltimore.

“The New Black” is a documentary by Yoruba Richen that tells the story of how the African-American community is grappling with gay rights issues in light of the marriage equality movement and the fight over civil rights. The film documents activists, families and clergy on both sides of the campaign to legalize gay marriage and examines homophobia in the black church and reveals the Christian right-wing strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda.

Following the film, panelists will continue the discussion about LGBT issues in black communities. Among the panelists will be Vanessa Bowling, a member of Equality Maryland’s staff who was involved in the Maryland Black Family Alliance as far back as 2008. Another will be Mark McLaurin, who helped found MBFA and was integral to the work during Question 6.

“We’re excited to screen ‘The New Black’ and continue the momentum working on LGBT issues in black communities across the state,” Keith Thirion, director of advocacy and programs for Equality Maryland, told the Blade. “While Maryland’s LGBT community has gained equal marriage rights and anti-discrimination protections, much work remains to ensure everyone can live their full lives free from discrimination. This event is an important opportunity to reflect on the successes of the Question 6 campaign, and discuss the challenges and opportunities ahead.”

The screening is free of charge.

  • “The New Black” isn’t exactly a new documentary. It won the Audience Award as the most popular film shown during the 2013 AFI Docs Film Festival. Well worth seeing!

  • This is NOT a new Doc. This is something that occurred 2 1/2 years ago. Promoting this back during the 2012 presidential race. There has been many strides in the African American community concerning homophobia. But Why our non-Black LGBTQ brothers and sisters JUST CANNOT LET THIS DIE is beyond me. Why we will not address RACISM in this community is simply asinine. Why can't you give Blacks credit or you simply refuse to acknowledge it. If you're not going to engage the African American community in regards to this. Then go and change the hearts and minds in your own community. Whites and Hispanics have much homophobia within those communities. But obviously you seem to be okay with that? And even if the ones presenting this doc is African American they should be ashamed not to mention that changes are happening. Stop being a slave to the LGBTQ Community's constant bashing of this topic!

    Strange That The Blade and all the gay bloggers refuse to report this story about Ranzeno Frazier taking over to run a LGBTQ Center in Charlotte NC but our non-black gay brothers and sisters aren't happy about it and they didn't mind letting him know that in true Southern racist hospitality! Things that make you go HMMMMMMM!


    When this community realizes that RACISM is real and stop trying to hide it under a cover as if it doesn't exist. Maybe we can begin to understand one another.

  • negativity toward gays by the black community is shown be eg in PG county prop 6 to support equal marriage also lost by about 1%

    in heavily white and conservative AA county I knocked on doors and contacted about 4000 people. 70% of repubs and 80% of dems supported prop 8

    I realize your sensitive given the history of black people but eg the southern baptist head, now an african american, condemned not just gay marriage but gays in general at their last convention

    Its always interesting how via religion the people who were oppressed, when basically free, join with their past oppressors to go negatve on another minority group


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