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The New Black

The New Black tells the story of how the African American community is grappling with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights in light of the marriage equality movement and the fight over civil rights. We meet activists, families, and clergy on both sides of the campaign to legalize same-sex marriage in Maryland, a state with a 30 percent African-American population. Through this story, the film examines homophobia in the black community's institutional pillar—the black church—and reveals the Christian right wing's strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda. The New Black takes viewers into the pews and onto the streets as it tells the story of the historic fight to win marriage equality in Maryland and charts the evolution of this divisive issue within the black community.

Same-sex marriage is currently legal in 13 countries around the globe—Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and Uruguay —and in several states in Brazil, Mexico, and the United States. It is currently in the legislative process in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Boris Dittrich, advocacy director for Human Rights Watch's LGBT Rights Program, proposed the first same-sex marriage bill in the Netherlands, which became the first country to legalize same-sex marriage. Human Rights Watch promotes full equality for LGBT people, including the right to marry.