The Rape Of Recy Taylor: A Film By Nancy Buirski
The number of women raped in the Jim Crow south were staggering. Because of the danger to their lives and the futility of getting justice most women didnt report the crimes and their stories when unknown.
Recy Taylors story was not part of this hidden history. As a 24 year old she was gang raped by six white man in 1944 in a small rural Alabama town. Mrs. Taylor spoke up and bravely identified her rapists.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the NAACP, sent Rosa Parks, later of the 1955 Montgomery Alabama bus boycott fame, down to investigate and build a movement to shine a public spotlight on the crime.
She rallied support and triggered an unprecedented outcry for justice. It ultimately was a failed effort. Despite widespread publicity in the black press including newspapers in New York City, Detroit, and Philadelphia plus a massive letter writing campaign which put pressure on the Alabama Governor, two grand juries failed to indict the rapists and an Alabama assistant attorney general issued a report exonerating the criminals.
This is the focal point of a new film titled, The Rape of Recy Taylor, written, directed and produced by Nancy Buirski. It recently had its North American premiere at the New York Film Festival.
Guest – Nancy Buirski joins us in the studio. The film won an award at the 74th Venice International Film Festival. Nancy has directed, written, and produced a number of award-winning films and is a member of the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Puerto Rico Hurricane Aftermath – Natasha Lycia Ora Bannan
Puerto Rico is the only remaining U S. colony in the western hemisphere. 3.5 million people live on the island. They lack representatives in Congress and the population is barred from voting in the US presidential elections. Although it is $73 billion in debt to American banks,by law it is unable to declare bankruptcy and restructure its debt. President Donald Trump said that the impact of Maria was partly the fault of Puerto Rico falling into a giant amount of debt that it has not repaid. With an already stressed out infrastructure the island in the past three weeks was hit by two extremely powerful hurricanes. Electricity and cell service are down, people are drinking water out of creeks, they have little fuel, little food, and the mayor of San Juan Carmen Yulin Cruz is sleeping on a cot. The mounting death toll is presently at 34.
President Trump accused the San Juan mayor of poor leadership after she criticize the American government for not helping Puerto Rico enough after Hurricane Maria. He said she was a politically motivated ingrate. Then he barred her from participating in a group phone call to talk about relief, telling her she could listen but not speak. He accused the Puerto Rican people of being lazy, saying that they want everything done for them.
Guest – Attorney Natasha Lycia Ora Bannan, Puerto Rican President of the National Lawyers Guild. She has recently returned from Cuba, which also suffered severely from hurricane Maria, but responded in a much more effective way. Support Puerto Rico to drive donations to the Hurricane Maria Relief and Recovery Fund at www.mariafund.org, set up by Puerto Rican lawyer/activist Xiomara Caro.