Rock the vote? Wakanda the vote.
That’s the idea behind, well, #wakandathevote, a program from the Electoral Justice Project, an arm of the Movement for Black Lives organization that aims to fight for the rights of black Americans. Now, the EJP, led by Kayla Reed, Jessica Byrd, and Rukia Lumumba, is using the opportunity presented by Black Panther to register black voters.
“This weekend we wanted to meet our people in Wakanda,” Byrd and Reed bold Blavity.com. “We know that for some it’s a superhero movie, but we know that the world we deserve is still waiting to be built — and we want to build it! This upcoming spring and November 2018 midterm elections are an important step in building that new world, and we want to take every opportunity to engage our communities in the conversation of electoral justice.”
According to Byrd and Reed, their campaign received support from over a thousand people in their initial launch, and that the campaign has been building in anticipation of this weekend. And the hashtag, #wakandathevote, is good proof of that, full of conversations, pictures, and excitement from workers and Black Panther fans all over the country.
The program also has elements for those who haven’t gotten a chance to get out to see the film: if you text 91990 with the word Wakanda, the EJP will help you register to vote.
Personally, I’ve been so thrilled this weekend to see the response from fans, activists, and, well, almost everyone to Black Panther this weekend. It’s a great time for fandom, and for superheroes (and kings) like T’Challa doing good in their worlds and in the real world.