Well, last Thursday, we officially launched the Hope Not Hate/20,000 Dialogues Film Series that has been months in the making, and is only just getting started! Oh, and by “we” I mean not just AIDemocracy, but also our invaluable partner, Unity Productions Foundation (UPF).

Our first screening took place at Busboys and Poets and we screened Prince Among Slaves, a documentary about an African Muslim prince that was enslaved in the American south. It was actually my first time seeing the film, so I was just as anxious as the audience was, and at the conclusion of the screening, the film did not disappoint. I encourage everyone to see it if you haven’t already. Contact UPF for more details about acquiring a copy. Afterward, we then conducted a dialogue session about the film, the issues it raises, and how it relates to contemporary society and our relationship with Muslims and Islam today. UPF, through their 20,000 Dialogues program, has conducted approximately 300 dialogues so far, and we look forward to working with them to continue increasing that number.

I thought overall, the event was a great success! We had a good group of people come on out, despite the torrential rain that fell over the DC-MD-VA area that afternoon, which is always a good sign! And I know that here at AIDemocracy, we anxiously look forward to making the remaining events of the film series as successful, if not more so, as last night’s.

And speaking of the remaining events of the film series, you can find out more about them on the Facebook page for the event, of which I encourage you to Like and share with your friends! However, what I can tell you right off the bat is that our next event will be on September 11th and we will be screening On a Wing and a Prayer, a documentary about a Muslim-American trying to pursue his dream of acquiring his pilot’s license after 9/11. We also will be having a very special guest come and speak at the event as well, Dr. Akbar Ahmed, who recently published his book “Journey Into America: The Challenge of Islam”. If you want a little taste of what Dr. Ahmed will be speaking about, here he is on last Thursday night’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

And finally, no recap would be complete with some photos and video of the event! Enjoy it and share with your friends! And be on the lookout for further updates from AIDemocracy about the rest of the film series. If you should have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me – patrick@aidemocracy.org.

Peace to you all!