Parents' Guide to


By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Powerful docuseries looks into incarceration's price.

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Gripping and incisive, this documentary series brings readers into a political movement, and makes them both understand the need for the protests and feel the tortured emotions of protestors. As we go behind the scenes of one particular Los Angeles action, in which a coalition drops off 100 prison beds in front of a Board of Supervisors meeting to protest a local plan to build new jails, Resist stitches together the activists' concerns in an emotionally resonant tapestry: the damage that mass incarceration does to black and brown communities, the LAPD's long and fearsome history with brutality, how cash bail and unlawful arrest affect the prison population, how an increased police presence on high school campuses winds up funneling teens into prison.

We hear from insiders, many of them ex-prisoners themselves, whose traumatic experiences are used to illustrate the social impact of incarceration, and are fed statistics: black students are suspended and expelled at a rate 3 times that of white students, 128 deaths occurred in California jails in 2016. All the while, we watch as Black Lives Matter and Dignity and Power Now co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors rallies her fellow activists, steering everything from the details on how to shut down a street (Khan-Cullors advises protestors to stay behind the set-up prison beds, because "No one's going to drive through steel beds ... but they will drive through humans.") to explaining to officials (and to us) how the $3.5 billion set aside for new jails could be used to prevent crime instead by investing in education, job resources, and housing. It's powerful stuff, and if viewers are inspired to protest unfair conditions in their own lives and communities after watching, it would be no surprise.

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