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Aaron Davis Hall Hosts NY Debut of Hate Crimes Film

Aaron Davis Hall hosts the New York debut of Rachel Lyons' "Hate Crimes in the Heartland."

“Hate Crimes in the Heartland” aims to foster dialogue on race relations in the United States

“Hate Crimes in the Heartland,” a new documentary that explores the 250,000 hate crimes committed in the United States each year, will have its New York premiere 6 p.m. Thursday, February 6, in Aaron Davis Hall on The City College of New York campus. Presented by the City College Center for the Arts, a reception and a talk with national and local civil rights leaders will follow the screening.

The film, directed by Rachel Lyon, looks at hate crimes through the lens of two incidents that occurred in Tulsa, Okla.: the drive-by shootings in April 2012 that left three people dead and two wounded in Tulsa’s predominantly African American Greenwood neighborhood and the 1921 race riot in the same community, then known as “Negro Wall Street,” in which 300 people died and more than 10,000 became homeless.

“There has been a sharp increase in violent hate crimes, whether based on religion, sexuality or most often based on race. The film and outreach project speaks to media, race, crime and punishment in a way that encourages constructive dialogue,” stated Ms. Lyon.

“Tulsa’s story can help America heal our seemingly intractable racial wounds and help halt the cycle of violence that erupts all too often,” added co-producer Pi-Isis Ankhra.

Like no other documentary exploring this topic, “Hate Crimes in the Heartland” tells powerful stories of survivors, activists, leaders, and community members. The film explores current and past hate crimes in our nation, asking important questions related to social justice, our individual and collective responsibility, along with a true examination of the media’s influence on the justice system.

More than 90 years apart, the two crimes reveal the story of the racial animosity and inequality that have come to define modern American society and culture. “Hate Crimes in the Heartland” explores these events, exposing an All-American city forever divided, and revealing the dangerous connections among the media, power, race, and justice.

For more information about the film premiere visit or contact Amanda Hurdlebrink, 513-324-8610,


About The City College of New York
Since 1847, The City College of New York has provided low-cost, high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. More than 16,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in: the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture; the School of Education; the Grove School of Engineering; the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education, and the Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership. U.S. News, Princeton Review and Forbes all rank City College among the best colleges and universities in the United States.



Ellis Simon
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