In our effort to amplify the voices and stories of movers and shakers who are making their mark in their industry and who are worthy to be recognized all year round, we’re showcasing the documentary by Rae Santisteban titled 'The First Rainbow Coalition'.
About the Film
In 1969, the Chicago Black Panther Party, notably led by the charismatic Fred Hampton, began to form alliances across lines of race and ethnicity with other community-based movements in the city, including the Latino group the Young Lords Organization and the working-class young southern whites of the Young Patriots. Finding common ground, these disparate groups banded together in one of the most segregated cities in postwar America to collectively confront issues such as police brutality and substandard housing, calling themselves the Rainbow Coalition. The First Rainbow Coalition tells the movement’s little-known story through rare archival footage and interviews with former coalition members in the present-day.
While the coalition eventually collapsed under duress from constant harassment by local and federal law enforcement, including the murder of Fred Hampton, it had a long-term impact, breaking down barriers between communities, and creating a model for future activists and diverse politicians across America.