North Carolina has a strong history of people fighting for social justice from Reconstruction to the civil rights movement. The most current incarnation of this struggle is the Moral Monday movement. During the summer of 2013, seasoned activists, ministers, professionals and everyday people descended upon the North Carolina state capital to protest the radical policies of a Republican-controlled legislature and thrust the Tar Heel state into the national spotlight.
North Carolina has long been considered a progressive oasis within the conservative South, but protesters claim these new laws are turning back the clock on 50 years of progress towards economic, gender and social equality. To dramatize these setbacks, Moral Monday activists engaged in civil disobedience inside the General Assembly building, leading to more than 900 arrests. Although the movement was spearheaded by the NC NAACP under the guidance of its president, Reverend William Barber, it represents a broad coalition of activist organizations from around the state.
“It’s Monday and the South is rising” is an inside look at what it was like to be at Moral Monday, from the rallies to the arrests. Viewed through the perspective of four participants, the film depicts a movement that calls for a reevaluation of a rising South and North Carolina’s state motto: to be rather than to seem.
-Rev. John Mendez, pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, NC
-Saladin Muhammad, former international representative for UE 150, currently member of the Southern Worker’s Assembly
-Kim Porter, member of Occupy Winston-Salem
-Timothy Tyson, member of NC NAACP, author and historian at Duke University
-Eric Preston, Fusion Films