I remember when Halle Berry won her Best Actress Oscar back in 2002 for Monster’s Ball; it was such a huge deal–she beat Judi Dench! It was the same year Denzel Washington won for Training Day, and everyone agreed that entertainment awards would never be the same because an actor and actress of color had both taken home a prestigious award.
Apparently, Halle and Denzel didn’t set a standard that year—they set a quota.
From last night’s Golden Globe awards:
Real white-out happening.
— Christopher Hayes (@chrislhayes) January 12, 2015
Is anyone else already exhausted? Twitter was:
MSNBC staff meeting?? RT @chrislhayes: Real white-out happening.
— GayPatriot (@GayPatriot) January 12, 2015
So cover up all your mirrors. RT @chrislhayes Real white-out happening.
— Jim Treacher (@jtLOL) January 12, 2015
“@chrislhayes: Real white-out happening.” From the PMSNBC anchor who doesn't care about skin color, caring about skin color.
— Ken Diesel (@KenDiesel) January 12, 2015
— CatsPolitics (@CatsPolitics) January 12, 2015
Your network's prime time line up? RT @chrislhayes: Real white-out happening.
— Stephen Miller (@redsteeze) January 12, 2015
It’s true, whitey ford took home the top four awards for excellence in performance. Selma—this year’s only halfway-intentionally controversial award-bait—didn’t take home an award for Best Picture—but did manage to catch the award for Best Original Song, which it probably deserved. “Glory” is emotional and culturally and contextually relevant (if not heavy-handed and annoyingly about Ferguson):
According to Mediaite, the only other non-white major award winner at this year’s Globes was Gina Rodriguez, who won Best Actress in a TV Comedy for her work in the (terrible, awful, going-to-be-cancelled) Jane the Virgin.
It’s getting to the point where we can’t even watch a movie anymore without worrying about whether or not the next AP notification on our phones is going to contain some sort of irrelevant accusation of faux-racism brought forth by an annoying white hipster whose job is to maintain a bully pulpit. Oh crap, are there enough black people in this? Is at least one of them gay? PREVENT MICROAGGRESSION!
Newsflash: not every movie is Rent, and not every award season will be peppered with entertainers who play successful black lesbians maintaining destructive relationships with bisexual white environmentalists who cheat on hipster filmmakers who live with tortured musicians who chase after strippers who have AIDS and sing songs with drag queens who date insurgent college professors. In the Village!
I still have a hard time accepting the fact that until the day I die, everything I do—every song that I sing along to in the car, every movie I pay for a ticket to see—will be examined under a microscope and trotted out as evidence of the impossibility of a post-racial America. It’s annoying, and it tarnishes the artistry and best intentions of those whose skin clocks in a little lighter than the next guy’s.
This is confirmation bias at its worst and most dangerous. Pop culture is probably the single most powerful medium for messaging that we have at our disposal, and this is what it’s being reduced to—a mental checklist of racial quotas and microaggression prevention tactics that draw more attention to race than a racist award show judge ever could.
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