A documentary that uncovers the complicated and often combative histories of the African-American and LGBT civil rights movements.
The New Black is a documentary that uncovers the complicated and often combative histories of the African-American and LGBT civil-rights movements. Specifically, the film examines homophobia in the black community%u2019s institutional pillar %u2013 the black church and reveals the Christian right wing%u2019s strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda. The film goes from New York to Washington D.C to California to document the stories of the gay gospel singer Tonex, and Sharon Lettman, the head of the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), who are challenging homophobia in the black church and confronting traditionally white gay organizations around issues of race. The film also follows some of the leading anti-gay black ministers as they fight efforts to advance gay rights. Through these stories and other secondary characters, the film reveals a political alliance between members of the black church and the Christian right that has shaped the fight for gay rights over the last 20 years. The film is coming at a crucial moment in the lives of the main characters and in the political state of the nation. For the first time ever, the black community is having a wrenching conversation about homophobia as the fight for gay rights is unfolding on the political stage and in the courts every day. Meanwhile the LGBT community is re-examining its strategy around how it works with African-Americans as it gears up for legislative battles in the 2012 election. The New Black captures these unprecedented dialogues and examines how the pursuit for LGBT rights has created conflicts both within the black community and between the black and LGBT communities. Ultimately, The film asks how and why is it that powerful members of the black church, which has historically been the moral center of the civil rights movement, have advocated to deny another minority group%u2019s rights.