Fair Fight Action brings civic education to a younger generation with the “Civics for the Culture” video series. Spearheaded by Chelsey Hall, Fair Fight’s lead on media and brand partnerships, “Civics for the Culture,” walks viewers through significant issues impacting free and fair Democratic participation for all.
In a new two-part series arc, “Civics for the Culture” explores the history of Democracy. Part one covers signing the Declaration of Independence through the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
Emerging from Fair Fight’s work during the 2020 election, “Civics for the Culture” engages viewers with trusted voices covering the ins and outs of American politics and government. During the 2020 election, Hall worked with entertainers like Issa Rae and Manish Dayal.
The success of engaging trusted voices showed Hall and her team that the work to sustain civic participation requires ongoing commitment and advocacy. She said there was a “huge gap” in many voters’ understandings of the electoral process from how to cast a ballot to what the different elected positions even do.
Bridging the gap includes building through media partnerships and working with celebrity influencers to help reach as many people as possible.
“One of my big missions has always been to make sure it’s authentic,” Hall explained. “And to make sure we’re speaking to the people that are number one most targeted by voter suppression, but also are young and look like us.”
Past guests include Georgia Democratic gubernatorial nominee, Fair Fight founder Stacey Abrams, actor Storm Reid, and Olympian Allyson Felix.
“It is hard for us day-to-day to realize what is real and what’s bullshit,” Hall said. “When we are engaging Storm, Stacey or Manish, we are leaning on the fact that number one, folks trust them. Folks can see themselves in them.”
Engaging potential and future voters could also mean reaching out to partner with sites like the Shade Room. While not the first platform one might think of when talking about civic engagement, the Shade Room is a source of information for a large segment of the population groups like Fair Fight are trying to reach. The national voter engagement group When We All Vote has also noted the Shade Room as a willing partner in sharing information about civic participation and Democracy.
“It is very hard for us to cut through the myths and disinformation that has been so prevalent in our elections and in Democracy over the past few years,” Hall continued. “And so leaning on these voices allow us to be able to talk to folks that might not be following Fair Fight.”
Hall says it’s essential to find people and work to earn their trust and attention.
“We have to meet people where they are, not expect people to be where we want them to be,” she said. “That is how you expand the electorate. That is how you make sure our Democracy is healthy.”
Hall also hopes the two-part lesson on the history of Democracy will awaken a sense of urgency about the upcoming elections. Much attention is put on presidential election cycles like 2020, but midterm Congressional and state and local elections are equally important, if not more so.
Stepping back and building the case for civic participation also reaffirms why ongoing participation is vital at election time and once people are sworn into office. As Hall notes, there is a “complexity” in the current election cycle that needs to be broken down and explained to people about why their ongoing participation is important.
“Knowing our history of democracy is only going to fuel us to make sure that we are locked in for what is to come,” she said. “If you really do care about the things that are happening in your community immediately, you can change that in these elections by voting for the right candidates, by actually participating and yelling from the rooftops what it is that we need. This is our time.”