Culture

Does This Video Show Bernie Sanders’ 1963 Civil Disobedience Arrest?

Those who doubt Bernie Sanders‘ record of civil rights activism — which has been an issue of contention during the democratic candidate’s rise — may find proof in some newly unearthed images and video footage. Only a few days ago, Time spoke with a photographer who covered civil rights issues during 1962 sit-ins in Chicago. He captured much-disputed images (which are now used for the Sanders campaign) that claim to show Sanders during a protest against segregated housing. After a lengthy revisit to contact sheets from the demonstrations, the photographer told Time there was “no question” the man in the images is Sanders. In addition, many Veterans for Bernie have gone on record with memories of observing Sanders at protests during the early 1960s.

Now, a slice of unearthed footage has emerged from the Chicago Public School Boycott of 1963. The video, which is part of the Kartemquin Film’s ’63 Boycott project, shows a man who looks much like the Time images and (of course) strongly resembles Sanders himself. Kartemquin co-founder Jerry Temaner captured the footage, which took place as activists protested “Willis Wagons.” The Chicago Public School system wished to adopt these aluminum trailers for overflow purposes at black schools. Naturally, this move would have aided continued segregation by discouraging rezoning.

The man in the video certainly looks a lot like Sanders, and the video includes screenshots of a Chicago Tribute article, which listed the names of those taken into custody (“for resisting arrest”) at the protest.

After this video’s circulation, Sanders could pull in additional support from the African-American community. Killer Mike already has his back with a solid display of support, even if some take those words out of context. Now onto the Nevada caucuses, South Carolina primaries, Super Tuesday, and beyond.

(Via Kartemquin Films)

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