Dear Ms. Sekler,

I would like to thank you for the copy of your documentary, "Locked Out", which Dr. Kaysen (whom I had the good

fortune to work for from 2002-2007) provided me. I've been in New Orleans for the last couple of years helping with

rebuilding and I started recording a lot of what matters to me by snapping pics: he shared your work with me as an

example of how to REALLY go about presenting what you care about. And then what happened was: I saw this and

became a raving fan. I have watched it three times now, and will watch it many more.

You took on something nobody seems to want to touch: the steady shift of our working (middle) class into a shadow

population of day laborers thanks to employers like Rio Tinto. The refrain: "we just want a chance to raise our families"

really stuck. The message I'm getting is: hard work and dedication entitles these workers to the benefits and protections

they have chosen to fight for: it's what enables them to build communities, to have and raise families, to participate in

the American way of life, and it's yet it's so far apparently been ok with a lot of us to see the terms of such effort revert

to something resembling what they showed us in high school history about the 1900s factory age. I'm getting my friends

to watch this - not to impose ideas but just because most people I know don't think about this and don't feel the loss of

what, as the ILWU members point out here, is valuable about our way of life and what we supposedly stand for.

Yet, your work portrays this not as the 'plight of the American worker', but as a rousing show of derring-do: workers who

stick together, all the while showing a clear grasp of the risk they've accepted; who forego romantic notions of their

struggle in favor of the discipline and self-restraint necessary to outsmart Rio Tinto. Best line, from one of the locked-out

miners to Gettier guard videotaping them: "You're a SAD individual, buddy." Especially thrilling is how the ILWU chapters

and other unions pull together to ensure the lockout's success. Watching those Teamster trucks peel off one after another - wow!

It's like you're saying: "This is where our pride is as Americans: yours and mine - you're in this too."

I'm often frustrated, when I watch a modern documentary, by the filmmakers' use of direct testimony: the speakers,

regardless how expert, so often dither and are just uncaptivating. I was amazed at how you handled this: everyone was

clear, focused and compelling and I was thinking "how did she do this?". And Peter Coyote's narration was like--you

could feel the strength of his conviction.

Thank you again for this masterpiece.