This Organization Is Proving You Can Fight Rape Culture And Celebrate 'Birth Of A Nation' At The Same Time

Photo by Jason LaVeris
This group of activists says celebrating the success of African-Americans in Hollywood can go hand in hand with continuing the fight against rape culture.

Actor Nate Parker has attempted to prevent the release of his latest film, The Birth Of A Nation, from being associated with the onslaught of backlash he's received since the recent resurfacing of a college rape charge that was later dropped, but one group of activists are making sure the conversation continues anyway.

While Parker has vaguely referenced the troubling incident in the past, many fans were unaware that it happened until earlier this year, when it was revealed that the woman who accused him of sexual assault committed suicide in 2012. 

The actor has maintained that the necessity of the film's undeniably important story and message should remain the focal point as promotion for the project continues, but the activist group Fvck Rape Culture has a separate plan in mind.

The Birth of Nation, which is heavily based on actual events that took place leading up to the epic slave revolt led by Nat Turner in 1831, is set to hit theaters this weekend and when it does, FRC says they will be on the front lines using their silence to speak volumes.

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According to Variety, the group plans to team up with filmmakers, artists and a host of women in Hollywood for a silent candlelight vigil in honor of sexual assault victims around the world just as the film makes its' debut.

Elyse Cizek, who organized the event, says as a woman of color and rape survivor herself, she wanted to be instrumental in standing for the voiceless women who are constantly shamed for their traumatic sexual assault experiences.

"I chose to be a part of a demonstration because as a survivor I wish for space to be held for myself and others who have been left voiceless in an industry that has the power to create change but refuses to listen to the needs of those whom they have silenced," she told Variety.

"We are a huge part of their audience and are continuously victimized and shamed for the crimes committed against us, yet too often used as accessories and plot points for those who seek to gain from our experiences in spite of us. I personally am saddened not only for my own experiences but for those who were directly affected by the actions of both Nate Parker and those seeking to glorify him despite his negligence in addressing the issue of rape culture while simultaneously perpetuating it.”

The FRC vigil is scheduled to take place at the Arclight Hollywood movie theater in L.A. this Thursday beginning at 7pm.

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