It was 10 years ago today that Flex Your Rights was born. On July 12, 2002, Steve Silverman filed articles of incorporation in Washington, DC, making the organization official.
I’m not sure what I expected when I showed up to volunteer a year later, but what I found was just Steve. He was broke and living off of beans and rice because paying himself would have depleted the budget for a film he planned to make called BUSTED: The Citizen’s Guide to Surviving Police Encounters. The plan was for the film to put this new organization on the map. Maybe we’d even get paid next year. It was a good plan.
In the years since, Flex Your Rights has become a familiar name among freedom-lovers across the nation and beyond. We’ve produced two hit films, reached over 19 million viewers online, appeared on FOX News, written for major publications, and had the privilege of working alongside the greatest civil libertarians of our generation. Above all, we’ve helped make know-your-rights education a central part the broader movement for liberty and justice in America.
Steve warned me that we’d never make more than a modest living doing this work, and he was right. But he also said we could educate millions, defend the constitution, and even change lives. He was right about that, too.
I want to thank every one of you for supporting us and making it possible for us to continue doing the work we love. More than anything, though, I want to thank Steve, whose vision, commitment, and sacrifice are the reason this great organization exists.
If you’re as impressed as I am with everything Steve has accomplished in the last 10 years, I hope you’ll consider contributing what you can to help Flex Your Rights accomplish even bigger and better things in the years to come.