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Coming to the Morton: screening of documentary on Native American mascoting, panel discussion with the director

The Morton Theatre Corporation (MTC) takes on an important and timely issue with a free screening of the award-winning documentary, "Imagining The Indian: The Fight Against Native American Mascoting."

Hailed as a "pulsating documentary" by the Los Angeles Times, the film delves into the history and harmful effects of Native American mascots.

The screening will take place at 6:30 p.m., Friday, March 15 at the historic Morton Theatre in downtown Athens (195 W. Washington Street). Following the film, there will be a panel conversation featuring director/producer Ben West, who is Southern Cheyenne and an advocate for Native rights; producer Kevin Blackistone, a longtime sports columnist and ESPN panelist on “Around the Horn”; and producer Yancey Burns, a filmmaker and former practicing attorney. The panel will offer insights and perspectives on the film, and current issues surrounding Native American mascoting–providing a platform for dialogue and education.

"We are honored to showcase this impactful and thought-provoking film at the Morton," said Kimberly Davis, a member of the MTC programming committee.”We hope the audience will gain a greater understanding and perspective about this issue.”

Directed by West and Aviva Kempner, “Imagining the Indian” delves into the movement aimed at eliminating the words, images, and gestures considered harmful, demeaning, and offensive by many Native Americans and their allies. Through archival footage and interviews with key figures, the documentary explores this issue from the perspective of Native peoples. It highlights the clear psychological research indicating that the use of Native American mascots is harmful, not only to Native people but also to marginalized groups globally.

For more information, contact the Morton Theatre at 706-613-3771 or Please visit our website at for updates and additional details.

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