History

Will Smith schools us on the 14th Amendment with new Netflix docuseries

Amend: The Fight for America is streaming now.

words by: Kai Acevedo
Feb 25, 2021

We can count on Will Smith to tell it like it is. The megastar is teaming with Netflix to tell the story of the U.S. Constitution’s 14th Amendment with Amend: The Fight for America. The six-part docuseries hosted and executive produced by Smith will examine the impact of the amendment that was introduced in 1868 as an attempt to establish rights for African Americans, who had been legally freed from slavery in 1865.

 

“Our hope with this series is to illuminate the beauty that is the promise of America and to share a message of connection and shared humanity so that we will be able to better understand and celebrate our different experiences as Americans and promote progress toward the true equality promised to all persons under the 14th amendment,” said The Fresh Prince.

 

Adopted during America’s short-lived Reconstruction period, the 14th Amendment was supposed to guarantee equal protection of the laws for all Americans, no matter their race. Section 1 of Amendment XIV reads, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.”

 

Amend: The Fight for America wants viewers to “question what a ‘united states’ really means.” The hour-long episodes will feature appearances from Samuel L. Jackson, Yara Shahidi, Mahershala Ali, Diane Lane and Pedro Pascal and revisit speeches and writings from Frederick Douglass, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Larry Wilmore, the comedian, writer and producer known for his work on primetime hits like Black-ish, Insecure, The Bernie Mac Show and The Daily Show, also serves as an executive producer on the Amend project.

 

You can catch Amend: The Fight for America on Netflix now. In the meantime, check out the trailer Amend below.