Activist Group Looks to Politicize "Black Panther"

Please don’t ruin “Black Panther” for me.

The anticipation for the latest movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is high, and reviews for the movie have been glowing, so far.


As a true, Marvel comics geek, I never miss one of the releases, and the long buildup to “Avengers: Infinity War” has been a wonderful ride.

And I just want to enjoy all the characters, all the movies, and all the goofy fun that comes with suspending disbelief.

But then there are always those who will latch on to something good and try to twist it for their own purposes. With the buzz surrounding the “Black Panther” movie, you had to know it was coming.

An activist group is using screenings of the movie for a voter registration drive.


Members of the Electoral Justice Project, an offshoot of the Movement for Black Lives, are seeking to “mobilize the black electorate” and increase political engagement with the #WakandaTheVote campaign, Blavity reported.

Oh. I get it. “Black Panther” is a black superhero. The movie is set in a fictional African nation called Wakanda, so this is just opportunism.

The founders of the project, Kayla Reed, Jessica Byrd, and Rukia Lumumba say they go where the people are, whether in the streets or at movie theaters.

“This weekend we wanted to meet our people in Wakanda,” Byrd and Reed told Blavity. “We know that for some it’s a superhero world, but we know that the world we deserve is still waiting to be built — and we want to build it.”

The project’s website notes that volunteers will be wearing “Wakanda inspired outfits” to help moviegoers register to vote.


I honestly don’t have a problem with organizations working in their communities, being civic minded, educating and enrolling new voters.

That can be a really good thing.

What I fear is that they’ll take what should be a fun, positive thing – such as this latest Marvel installment – and turn it hyper-partisan, and intensely political.

If this movie is as amazing as the previews show, it shouldn’t lose its luster by being attached to the political motives of others outside of the movie process.

The project intends to up their efforts ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

“We want to take every opportunity to engage our communities in the conversation of electoral justice,” they said.

Electoral justice?

Um, ok. Just let people enjoy the movie, though.


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