Show Racism the Red Card Scotland held a private screening of Kathryn Bigelow’s film Detroit on Tuesday the 22nd of August 2017 thanks to Entertainment One UK. The film is based on the true story of the ‘Detroit Rebellion’ in 1967 triggered by police brutality and oppression. The film focuses on the Algiers motel where three young black men lost their lives at the hands of police officers who subjected residents to hours of torturous abuse.
Community members from across Glasgow attended the screening in solidarity against injustice and filled the Glasgow Film Theatre. After the screening, Show Racism the Red Card held a Q&A panel session and were delighted to have Professor Colin Clark (University of the West of Scotland), Ude Adigwe (GMB Union), Academy Award winner and Sound Recordist for Detroit Ray Beckett Margaret Woods (Unite Against Fascism) and Tommy Breslin (Scottish Union Learning) sit on the panel and answer extremely difficult questions. The panel eloquently spoke of how Detroit captured the context and moral panics around snipers (post-Charles Whitman), the racialised segregation of a poverty stricken city and Police brutality and a culture of fear. The film also elicited interesting discussions around recent event in Charlottesville and we were also reminded of Sheku Bayoh who lost his life while in police custody here in Scotland.
Detroit is an extremely powerful film it was however very difficult to watch at certain points and you could feel the helplessness and powerlessness experienced by the protagonists.
Our data tells us that racism is on the rise in Scotland with 1 in 3 ethnic minority people experiencing discrimination based on their skin colour, religion, nationality and culture. We also however know that the number people standing against injustice is on the rise. People who were sat with us at the screening of Detroit. The people who call us up and want to get involved in tackling social injustice. The people who take our message and Show Racism the Red Card.
It is important to come to these events, its important to keep questioning the status quo and it is important that we keep the dialogue open in order to protect Human Rights especially in the face of the rise in populism and the far right. Great things happen when communities come together and we really can create a better Scotland for All.
A special thank you to Entertainment One for sponsoring this event, Ray Beckett who is the Sound Recordist for Detroit, as well as to Professor Colin Clark from the University of the West of Scotland, Tommy Breslin from Scottish Union Learning, Margaret Woods from Unite Against Fascism and Ude Adigwe from the GMB Union. A big thank you to Paul Yates for creating the marketing material for the screening.
We urge community members to go and watch this powerful and thought-provoking film and to continue to stand in solidarity with us against racism and injustice.