“You Racist, Sexist Bigot” Raises Awareness Through Storytelling
What began as an eight-minute short film is now turning into a full length documentary. You Racist, Sexist Bigot is the crowd-funded film that portrays diversity and the struggle people go through when they are perceived as “different” from everyone else.
Pita Juarez, journalist and filmmaker for You Racist, Sexist Bigot, talked to SmartFem about the film and gave us some information on how to support the endeavor.
When you first hear the title of the film, it may be a bit shocking. Despite grabbing your attention, the film is about people. Juarez emphasized that the film is about reality.
“This is a real story,” Juarez said.
Juarez and filmmaking partner Matty Steinkamp went out of their way to make sure the people portrayed were happy with their depiction. This is important in the era of new media as audiences are constantly exposed to social media, memes, and bias in every avenue they choose to consume media. To avoid confusion about depictions and to respect the stories of the subjects of the film Steinkamp and Juarez let every interviewee review the final edited clip of their story.
“Every single person is a writer,” Juarez explained. She described going back to every storyteller and asking, “Do you sound the way you wanted?”
Juarez pointed out that many people think Arizona is still a “racist state.” While some may argue this point, there are people who experience discrimination and racism in our state every day.
Regardless of gender orientation, race, lifestyle choices, and past experiences, Arizonans are so diverse and living this close to the border, citizenship is also a factor in discrimination.
Without giving away too many spoilers, Juarez spoke to a transwoman, a biracial couple, a rape survivor and many more locals who have different experiences with bigotry and racism.
“This still exists every day,” Juarez mentioned.
Juarez also mentioned that although the film will be marketed nationally in the festival circuit, there are still “little Arizona things,” that can be found throughout the film.
A film titled You Racist, Sexist Bigot will be hard to ignore once you know about it. Juarez mentioned that they hope they will be able to “create awareness.”
It is possible that audience members will have never met or even spoken to people with similar backgrounds that they interviewed for the film. Juarez used the example of a man who wears a turban for spiritual reasons in the film.
“The turban is often a symbol of fear,” Juarez mentioned. To combat this fear they let this man speak up and tell his story of discrimination and the reason behind his wearing the turban. Without a film like this, it is possible someone would have never bothered to find out about the rich history of this tradition.
Hearing stories from different perspectives will aid in audiences understanding of what these people go through and the importance of tolerance and empathy.
The first full trailer will show at the Crescent Ballroom in Phoenix on August 6, 2017. The event is called “Queer Frida” after the Mexican painter Frida Kahlo. There will be drinks, poetry, a drag show and a screening of the trailer for You Racist, Sexist Bigot.
To support the film contribute here.