Your Debt Is Someone Else’s Asset

Student loans, medical bills, credit cards — Americans are drowning in a record-breaking $15 trillion in debt. Covering thousands of years in just under seven minutes, “Your Debt Is Someone Else’s Asset” ends with a rousing vision of the future: a world after a jubilee, an ancient term for the abolition of debts and rebalancing of power between the rich and the poor.

Deadly Shame – Parts 1-3

‘“Deadly Shame: Redressing the Devaluation of Registered Nurse Labor Through Pandemic Equity” is a new white paper by National Nurses United (NNU) which provides an in-depth analysis of the devaluation of nurses’ care work and resulting inequities, their experiences on the pandemic’s front lines, and ways to redress these issues through collective action.”
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Mariah Carey – Save The Day

The official lyric video for Mariah Carey’s “Save the Day”
PushBlack, the digital hub for daily inspiring Black stories, has partnered with award-winning singer, songwriter and producer Mariah Carey in a first of its kind partnership between a non-profit and recording artist. Carey has lent her anthem ”Save The Day” to PushBlack to serve as a call to action and to encourage Americans to enact social change.

Illustrated by Molly Crabapple
Directed by Kim Boekbinder & Jim Batt
Produced by Sharp as Knives
Executive Producers Mariah Carey & Kerry Washington

A Message from the Future II: The Years of Repair

Do we have a right to be hopeful? With political and ecological fires raging all around, is it irresponsible to imagine a future world radically better than our own? A world without prisons? Of beautiful, green public housing? Of buried border walls? Of healed ecosystems? A world where governments fear the people instead of the other way around?

Illustrated by Molly Crabapple, Narrated by Opal Tometi, Emma Thompson, Gael García Bernal, and Nnimmo Bassey. Written by Opal Tometi and Avi Lewis. Produced by Avi Lewis. Music and Sound by Kim Boekbinder. Directed by by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt. 

Reconstruction in America

Illustration of EJI’s report, Reconstruction in America ( The report documents nearly 2,000 more confirmed racial terror lynchings of Black people by white mobs in America than previously detailed, bringing the total number of confirmed lynchings to 6,500 with thousands more that may never be documented. The report examines the 12 years following the Civil War when lawlessness and violence perpetrated by white leaders created an American future of racial hierarchy, white supremacy, and Jim Crow laws—an era from which our nation has yet to recover.

Illustrated by Molly Crabapple
Narrated by Tera DuVernay
Produced by Sharp as Knives for The Equal Justice Initiative

Everyone Loves Someone Who Had An Abortion 

Access to reproductive healthcare, including abortion, largely depends on where you live and how much money you have. But abortion funds are taking the hassle, hustle, and harassment out of healthcare by helping people all across our network access and fund abortions. 

Illustrated by Molly Crabapple
Narrated by Padma Lakshmi
Directed and produced by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt

The Zo, Episode 3, “Retaliation” 

In The Zo, prisoners often face retaliation from prison administrators when they file grievances about ever-changing regulations or misconduct they uncover through their documentation. Our final installment explores how,even though administrators encourage incarcerated people to file these grievance forms, those who do are frequently punished for bearing witness with transfers, solitary confinement, or harassment by prison guards.

 Narrated by Michael K. Williams
Illustrated by Molly Crabapple for The Marshal Project
A Sharp as Knives production

The Zo, Episode 2, “Adaptation” 

When you’re incarcerated, how do you fight The Zo? The second part of our series covers the tiny concrete details and routines you cling to when prison rules and regulations shake their grip on reality.

Narrated by Michael K. Williams
Illustrated by Molly Crabapple for The Marshal Project
A Sharp as Knives production

The Zo, Episode 1, “Induction” 

Step into The Zo—a term coined by one prisoner who felt being in prison was like living in ‘The Twilight Zone.’ The Zo is not a place you can point to or a system you can fight. It’s the result of quixotic, arbitrary moves by prison wardens and staff that incarcerated people can rarely prove or defend themselves against. Our first episode, “Induction,” shows how prison guards and administrators use deliberate bureaucratic paradoxes to make you question your grip on reality and your sense of self.

Narrated by Michael K. Williams
Illustrated by Molly Crabapple for The Marshal Project
A Sharp as Knives production

Life at the Fenceline

There are over 12,000 high-risk chemical facilities in America — and roughly 40% of U.S. residents live within three miles of them. We teamed up with Rashida Jones, Molly Crabapple and to tell the stories of these vulnerable communities — disproportionately black and Latino — that live every day with the threat of chemical leaks, spills, and explosions that threaten families’ health, their livelihoods, and ultimately, their lives. Learn more:

Narrated by Rashida Jones
Illustrated by Molly Crabapple
Directed by Jim Batt and Kim Boekbinder

A Message From the Future with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

What if we actually pulled off a Green New Deal? What would the future look like?

Narrated by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez​
Illustrated by Molly Crabapple
Co-directed by Kim Boekbinder​ and Jim Batt
Music/sounds by Kim Boekbinder
Written by Avi Lewis and AOC
Produced by Naomi Klien​ and The Intercept​

The Truth About the Money Bail Industry

Between 1990 and 2009, the percentage of people charged with felonies rose, and those who were required to pay money bail for their release increased by 65%. By design the number of people jailed without even being convicted skyrocketed. These are people who deserve to be free but have had their lives ruined by jail even when their cases were dismissed or they won.

Narration by John Legend. Directed and produced by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt. Illustrated by Molly Crabapple. 

The Chainsmokers: Somebody

Animated music video for the Chainsmokers’ song ‘Somebody’

Directed and produced by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt. Illustrated by Molly Crabapple. 

We are America. Immigrants are us.

A year after a U.S. election marred by divisive rhetoric, thousands of families have been torn apart and millions are living in fear because of cruel and ineffective immigration policies. Every day, people who call the United States home – including the parents and spouses of U.S. citizens, tax-paying employees, and respected community members – are arrested, locked up, and deported, under laws that treat their deep and longstanding ties to this country as a thing of no consequence.

Full accompanying article here on Huffington Post.

Narration by Samantha Bee. Directed and produced by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt. Illustrated by Molly Crabapple. 

Time Marches Forward and So Do We

Only 18 states explicitly and comprehensively protect trans people from discrimination. Many other state lawmakers are focused on targeting us for more discrimination. In 2017, lawmakers in 22 states introduced more than 50 bills restricting the rights of trans people.Even as these lawmakers signal that we are not worthy of protection, we persevere. Most of us have already spent years in dark places wrestling with our truths, feeling ashamed of who we are. But when we manage to survive, and even to love ourselves, we are stronger than ever. Try as they might, these lawmakers cannot erase us. Our rights will be hard won, but we are winning.
More info at TIME.Com:

 Narration by Laverne Cox. Directed by Kim Boekbinder and Jim Batt. Drawn by Molly Crabapple.

The War on Drugs is ‘Epic Fail’

This short film, narrated by Jay Z… is part history lesson about the war on drugs and part vision statement. As Ms. Crabapple’s haunting images flash by, the film takes us from the Nixon administration and the Rockefeller drug laws — the draconian 1973 statutes enacted in New York that exploded the state’s prison population and ushered in a period of similar sentencing schemes for other states — through the extraordinary growth in our nation’s prison population to the emerging aboveground marijuana market of today. We learn how African-Americans can make up around 13 percent of the United States population — yet 31 percent of those arrested for drug law violations, even though they use and sell drugs at the same rate as whites.  -New York Times 09/15/2016
Full article available here:

Narration by Jay-Z. Direction and audio design by Kim Boekbinder and Animation by Jim Batt. Produced by Dream Hampton and Revolve Impact.

Slavery to Mass Incarceration

The elaborate mythology of racial difference created to sustain American slavery persists today. Slavery did not end in 1865, it evolved. #SlaveryEvolved
The legacy of slavery can be seen in the presumption of guilt and dangerousness assigned to African Americans, especially young men and boys, the racial profiling and mistreatment that presumption creates, and the racial dynamics of mass incarceration.
EJI’s Race and Poverty project explores racial history and attempts to deepen our understanding of the legacy of racial injustice. By telling the truth about our past, EJI believes we can create a different, healthier discourse about race in America.
More information here:

Narration by Bryan Stevenson. Script by Bryan Stevenson and Kim Boekbinder. Directed by Jim Batt. Sound design by Kim Boekbinder.  Shot by Burke Heffner.

Locking up Immig rants for Profit

The United States puts immigrants behind bars every day. Though the vast majority of these immigrants are not criminals, they are kept in conditions as brutal as those for any other prisoner. Congress requires Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also called ICE, to keep 34,000 immigrants behind bars each day in order to keep its funding. But, out of the 350 facilities it uses to incarcerate these immigrants, only 8 are owned and operated by ICE itself. For the rest, ICE pays between $122-$200 per person, per night, to for-profit corporations and local jails.

 Politicians love to bray that ‘illegal aliens’ are bleeding America. But the real leeches are the private prison companies who rake in billions in taxpayer money to ruin immigrants’ lives – including those with the legal papers to live and work in the US..

Animation by Jim Batt. Sound design by Kim Boekbinder. Shot by Burke Heffner.

How Police Profile and Shame Sex Workers

In May 2013, Monica Jones, a student and LGBT activist at Arizona State University, was arrested for “manifesting prostitution.” Monica said she just accepted an undercover officer’s offer of a ride home from her favorite bar. Monica is among the tens of thousands of people arrested every year for prostitution-related offenses. According to the FBI, police arrested over 57,000 people on such charges in 2011. The vast majority were women.

Animation by Jim Batt. Sound design by Kim Boekbinder. Shot by Burke Heffner.

Solitary Confinement

As of 2013, there were 80,000 men and women in solitary confinement in the United States, some of them as young as 14 years old. In this illustrated op-ed video, artist Molly Crabapple explains the psychological and physical trauma suffered by those forced to spend 22-24 hours a day alone — sometimes for arbitrary reasons, like reading the wrong book, or having the wrong tattoo — in a grey, concrete box. (According to the U.N. 15 days in solitary is torture.) “There is no limit to how long someone can be held in solitary confinement,” says Crabapple. “And very little evidence is needed to justify holding a person in solitary indefinitely.”

Broken Windows

Last summer, a New York city police officer choked a black grandfather named Eric Garner to death. Garner was suspected of selling loose cigarettes. The arrests of people like Garner are part of a controversial policing tactic called Broken Windows. Broken Windows claims to prevent large crimes by cracking down on small ones. But it’s really about controlling and punishing communities of color, through police encounters that can sometimes be deadly.

Written, illustrated, & narrated by Molly Crabapple. Directed by Jim Batt. Sound design by Kim Boekbinder. Shot by Keith Jenson.

How Ferguson Showed Us the Truth about Police

This is a short by animator Jim Batt and Molly Crabapple, explaining the events in Ferguson, and the events brought to light outside the city, since the shooting of Mike Brown.

I Have Your Heart

A Short Film by Crabapple, Boekbinder and Batt
A stop motion, paper puppet animation about love, loss and open-heart surgery.
Directed by Jim Batt. Art by Molly Crabapple. Music by Kim Boekbinder.