The Long Arc
Spooky Concert, 2008
NAACP treasurer Wharlest Jackson, Sr.'s bombed truck after he was assassinated by the Klan.
Americans like to think we’ve evolved to a post-racial society since the election of President Barack Obama. Yet one of the most egregious signs that we have miles to go are dozens of racially motivated Civil Rights era murders that remain unsolved. The Long Arc weaves together the story of Civil Rights veteran and Congressman John Lewis’ efforts to get the FBI to investigate these cases with the story of Wharlest Jackson, Jr., a day laborer in Natchez, Mississippi who was just 8 years-old in 1967 when his father was assassinated by the Klan. Both intimate and epic, The Long Arc explores the possibility of forgiveness and the power of truth, both in terms of its meaning for a society and for the people impacted by these murders. The film will follow both men’s aspirations to heal Natchez, perhaps through a truth commission that sheds light where the justice system has failed.
Brad Lichtenstein is president of Milwaukee-based 371 Productions, a media company creating projects for the common good. His recent film, …