On the Horizon – Be Heard!

Week to week we receive emails from comic book companies of all stripes. Taking those we present you with the things that we think will be the most interesting to you the listeners. If you have any news or announcements that you would like to share with Thinking Outside the Longbox shoot us an email at: outsidethelongbox@gmail.com
Be Heard! – Kai Texel a. – Comic Book Legal Defense Fund/National Coalition Against Censorship

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The voice of change is often the voice of youth, and we are seeing that today. In the wake of recent (and persistent) school shootings the voice of middle and high school aged kids is being heard in the form of class walk outs and demonstrations. So the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and the National Coalition Against Censorship have joined forces to help young people navigate the perilous legal waters of protest:
As millions of American students assert their First Amendment rights in protests across the country, advocacy groups Comic Book Legal Defense Fund and National Coalition Against Censorship today released a new comic book to help protect students’ rights. Be Heard! is a free comic by cartoonist Kai Texel that outlines best practices to help kids assert their rights to speech, protest, assembly and petition, warns about risks, and provides resources to get more help. Be Heard! is available for free from CBLDF & NCAC, who encourage readers to share it freely and broadly in advance of the National School Walkout on March 14, the March for Our Lives on March 24 and local protests across the country.
Judy Blume, a member of the NCAC Board of Directors says, “This comic book feels just right. It’s so important to support and encourage kids on issues that affect their own lives and their country.”
Neil Gaiman, who co-chairs CBLDF’s advisory board notes, “In the US, freedom of speech is paramount. The First Amendment states that you can’t be arrested for saying things the government doesn’t like. It’s important that students everywhere know that they have the right to be heard. This comic will help provide them with practical tools to raise their voice.”
Gene Luen Yang, whose distinctions include recognition as a MacArthur Fellow, the fifth National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature and author of graphic novels including American Born Chinese says, “A Chinese poet once described free expression as the mother of truth.  In our age of fake news, speaking truth to power is more important than ever. This comic is a valuable guide that teaches students how to ensure their truth is heard.”   
“Whether students choose to participate in this national movement or not, whether they walk out into the hallway or march to their Senator’s office, whether they wear orange or write an op-ed for the school paper, this moment is the ultimate First Amendment lesson,” said Abena Hutchful, coordinator of NCAC’s Youth Free Expression Program and Kids’ Right to Read Project. “We hope that teachers will engage with their students in productive ways and we want to make sure that students know what is–and is not–protected protest speech in schools.”
Be Heard! is available as a free download at CBLDF.org and NCAC.org, and through their social media channels. Follow #StudentsBeHeard for updates.
For Additional Information Contact:
Charles Brownstein, CBLDF, charles.brownstein@cbldf.org(971) 266-8212
Nora Pelizzari, NCAC, nora@ncac.org, Office (212) 807-6222, ext. 105 |  Mobile (708) 805-8289

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