This video extra from the Independent Lens documentary The New Black gives us an intimate look at how singer Tonéx, a.k.a. B.Slade, shifted gears in his life as a successful gospel artist when he revealed he was gay. The news set off a storm of controversy within the gospel music world and the church, but won him new fans as well.
See how the African-American community is grappling with the gay rights issue in light of the gay marriage movement and the fight over civil rights. “The New Black” documents activists, families and clergy on both sides of the campaign to legalize gay marriage and examines homophobia in the black community’s institutional pillar — the black church — and reveals the Christian right wing’s strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda. The film takes viewers into the pews and onto the streets and provides a seat at the kitchen table as it tells the story of the historic fight to win marriage equality in Maryland, charting the evolution of this divisive issue within the black community.