In 1965, a group of white organizers went into Newark's central ward to work with the black community, forming the Newark Community Union Project (NCUP). Traditional forms of protest--letters to city officials, demonstrations, electoral politics--were used as tactics for organizing. The film focuses on the action undertaken around three issues. The first is an attempt to get housing code enforcement; the second, to get a traffic light installed at a hazardous intersection. After many months of hallow promises, and inaction on the part of the city government an attempt was made to elect a third party candidate to the City Council. Lacking the resources of the two major parties, this was doomed to failure too The film is an absorbing, informative documentary of the frustrating failures of NCUP and the problem of getting even modest reform within the present political structure. But it goes beyond this--it shows clearly the contradictions in the concept of white groups organizing in black and other third world communities. A good study in some of the early New Left tactics--how and why they failed.
1966 - 53 minutes