Why Should We Care About Diversity in Hollywood?

Why Should We Care About Diversity in Hollywood?

 

 #OscarsSoWhite? 

In stark contrast, #SAGSoBlack. 

In a great kickoff to Black History Month, Sunday night’s Screen Actors Guild Awards proved what we all knew — there is no shortage of talented actors/actresses of color in Hollywood. Idris Elba won an award for his amazing portrayal of Luther, as well as his supporting role in Beasts of No Nation. I was incredibly pleased because after a Netflix session of binge watching Elba’s portrayal of tortured Detective John Luther, I completely understood why everyone’s across the pond sings  his praises from the rafters. Viola Davis continued her absolute domination of Thursday night with another award for How to Get Away with Murder. 

So why should we care about diversity in Hollywood?

Hollywood spends a great deal of time in our homes, resulting in Hollywood shaping our psyche. By audiences not seeing positive portrayals of people of color, coupled with negative images in the evening news, stereotypes become even more ingrained. 

The naysayers say “be patient, this is subjective, considering diversity is racist against Whites”

Really? 

I understand that an individual actor has to be patient in their quest for greatness. You have to get the right role to shine. But if people of color are not getting roles (including white actors playing African American characters, cue Michael Jackson), and those who do great work are not being recognized, then it is clear who the racism is against. 

Take a listen to my thoughts on BBC’s World Have Your Say, where I was invited to discuss whether or not Chris Rock should boycott his hosting duties at the Oscars. Link is here, segment begins at 17:50. 

See who the diverse winners of the SAG Awards here

M. 

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