Sit-In vs. White Paper

729 Words3 Pages
Few times in American history have been more trying than that of the Civil Rights Movement. African Americans’ struggle for equality has been a long, hard-fought, and well documented battle that continues to this day in many areas across the country. The roots of the Civil Rights movement can be traced back to 1954 and the Brown vs. the Board of Education trial, which decided that segregation in schools was unconstitutional. Another monumental aspect of the movement is the idea of the sit-in. NBC’s documentary series White Paper in the 1960s covered a series of sit-ins throughout the heated south with the use of limited narration and straight forward editing of actuality footage that expressed an unbiased viewpoint of everything they encountered. “Sit-In”, the episode in NBC’s White Paper series, has a dedication to truth, an aspect of the film that is seen in its limited third party interviews. The individuals participating in these sit-ins across the south were mostly African American college students, and they, along with a handful of others are the subjects of the film’s interviews. Certain interviewees come from the spectrum of stereotypical white racists, expressing their hatred for a race they know little or nothing about. However, the innocence and peacefulness conveyed in the African American college students helps define the meaning of not only the film, but also of the Civil Rights Movement as a whole: we are all equal, no matter what color our skin may be. One interview in particular shared the story of a young white male who joined in a protest by a group of African Americans and was ridiculed and abused by other whites for his involvement. This also does the job of impacting the viewer to see that racism is extremely ugly and an unnecessary evil in America. The documentary definitely reinforces the saying “a picture’s worth a thousand
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