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Fred Litwin

Advice to students: Get up and get going

There’s a simple truth that every student should understand – it doesn’t take money to get things done, it takes drive and determination.As President of the Free Thinking Film Society, I am fairly busy showing films and bringing in speakers to Ottawa.But what really amazes me are the reactions I get regarding our events, particularly on Facebook. Political opponents, typically from the left, usually have one stock phrase they use to criticize me – ‘follow the money.’ How else could I possibly show films in support of Israel or films that question environmentalism, or any other film they easily dismiss as ‘right-wing’. The only viable explanation for why I show a film is that I have been paid; and that once you determine who my ‘masters’ are, you’ll understand what we’re ‘really’ about.My favorite comment was when one person asked what big ‘oligarch’ was behind the Free Thinking Film Society! I am flattered that I now become an oligarch.The major problem with their theory is that I have no big donors behind me.  Not one.Truth be told – most of our events cost very little. I try to find inexpensive venues and films that cost little to license. I have several retail outlets that sell my tickets for a small fee, and I do most of my marketing on the internet. I rely on unpaid volunteers to help out at events, put up posters, and perform various other small tasks. Even when we don’t get many people out, we rarely lose a lot of money.So, there’s nothing to follow. No hidden forces behind the Free Thinking Film Society.  Nobody pulls any strings except me and our Board of Directors.Last summer, I decided that I would like to focus on the CBC. My friend James Cohen and I worked all summer on… Read More