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BARBARA LEE: SPEAKING TRUTH TO POWER is an intimate and inspiring portrait of Representative Barbara Lee, a champion of civil rights and a steadfast voice for human rights, peace, and economic and racial justice in the U.S. Congress. In 2001, in the face of extreme backlash, she cast the lone vote in opposition to the broad authorization of military force following the September 11th attacks and issued a strident warning in the House of Representatives, “Let us now become the evil we deplore.” Decades later, she continued that clarion call, demanding that Congress stand up to President Trump when he escalated tensions with numerous foreign governments while seeding division within his own country.


This feature documentary reveals the many challenges faced by Barbara Lee early in her life, including raising two sons as a single mother on food stamps and surviving domestic violence, which have provided her with the compassion, motivation, and commitment to use her position as an elected representative to improve the lives of her constituents. With unique access to a sitting member of Congress, this film not only introduces audiences to Barbara Lee, but to many others such as Senator Cory Booker, Representative John Lewis, Representation Ayanna Pressley, Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, CNN commentator Van Jones, actor Danny Glover, and author Alice Walker, who all share insights about what makes Barbara Lee unique as a public servant and as a truth-telling Black woman in America. Uncompromising and conscientious to the core, Barbara Lee paves a path of integrity for future politicians.

  • Year
    2020
  • Runtime
    82 minutes
  • Language
    English
  • Country
    United States
  • Social Media
  • Director
    Abby Ginzberg
  • Executive Producer
    Jonathan Logan
  • Cast
    Barbara Lee
  • Cinematographer
    Vicente Franco, Ashley James
  • Editor
    Stephanie Mechura
  • Composer
    Osei Essed